I’m back from a too-long blog hiatus, and a two-week trip to Orlando in celebration of my 25th birthday.
While hanging out with Mickey and the gang, I regret to report that I made some not-so-healthy choices…from the seemingly endless birthday cupcakes presented to me at almost every restaurant we patronized, to the “hey, I’m on vacation” fruity mixed drinks consumed in the evenings.
Though we spent 15 hours a day on our feet trekking through 12 days of theme parks, I’m fairly confident that the calories I may have burned off running from Space Mountain to Pirates of the Caribbean in no way justified my lackluster (at best) attempts to make somewhat healthy choices while dining out. How can you go to Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville without ordering the “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” or shell out $40 for a buffet lunch with Pooh and friends in the Magic Kingdom and not sample a little bit of everything?
On the upside, we did make eggs and cereal in our room, and we even toted sandwiches into the parks – a time-saving strategy that undoubtedly also saved us hundreds of calories and at least $30 a day on food costs – but I found myself struggling to refuse the dinner entrees (and desserts, and cocktails) that I really wanted at table-service restaurants. I threw caution to the wind, right along with my resolve to lose weight and my commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
Unfortunately, there is a hefty (no pun intended) price to pay when you allow yourself to indulge in french fries and cupcakes as often as I did for as long as I did. Needless to say, the scale wasn’t too kind to me upon my return home.
But what’s worse than that number is that I feel absolutely terrible – physically and mentally.
I am truly ashamed by how easy it was for me to return to my “I’ll eat whatever I want” attitude from before I lost this weight. It’s terrifying that I can so quickly throw my new lifestyle out the window and abuse my body the way I once did. There’s loosening the reins and indulging while on vacation, and then there’s giving yourself permission to eat fried fish followed by french fries followed by ice cream followed by margaritas, all in the same day. There’s enjoying great food at a relaxing sit-down meal, and then there’s stuffing yourself until you’re sick…just because the food is there.
My mind kept telling me “you can have that milkshake now, but you should probably skip drinks tonight with dinner,” but then I went ahead and completely ignored my better judgement. What’s so humiliating about all of this is that there’s no excuse for my behavior. I know exactly what I need to do, and yet I simply choose not to. Weight Watchers has given me the tools to know how to indulge in not-so-POINT-friendly treats without completely derailing my progress, but being the mere mortal that I am, sometimes I opt to purposely make the wrong decision.
I hate feeling this way. I hate feeling as though I’ve “fallen off the wagon,” and realizing just how hard it is to get back on. Even though I’ve put less than 5 pounds back onto my body, mentally, it feels like 50. I feel sluggish and heavy and just not myself. I returned from Florida six days ago, and I have exercised just once since I’ve been home. I went for a half-hearted jog around town, which felt like pure agony because nearly three weeks had past since my last run.
In the meantime, I’ve been snacking on goldfish crackers that were left over from our trip, and happily pigging out with co-workers at a recent staff barbecue…and making little to no effort to count POINTS.
“But it’s the end of the summer,” I’ll tell myself, or “I need some time to adjust, and then I’ll get right back on track.”
If there’s anything I’ve learned from a lifetime of failed dieting attempts, it’s that there is absolutely no room for “I’ll get back on track [insert vague period of time here].” With each and every day that passes, it becomes harder and harder to return to your healthy habits, and that much more likely that you’ve strayed for good. I lost 60 pounds as a teenager only to pile it all back on in less than 2 years because one day of eating junk food turns into two days, which turns into a month, and into a year…and suddenly all of the weight has creeped back on, you’re busting out of plus-size jeans, and you have no idea how it happened.
No more excuses. My vacation is over, summer is over, and it’s time for me to climb back on that proverbial wagon and assume control of my mind and body again.
(Starting with throwing out this coffee drowning in cream and sugar that a co-worker gave me this morning. It’s making me sick.)