Healthy By Choice – Anticipation, Battles and Victories

fresh salad in bowlWhen we are trying to develop healthy habits, every day consists of many battles, and hopefully a few victories.  Saturdays are some of the hardest days for me to make healthy choices.  

Normally I try to keep Saturdays as “me” days.  I don’t always succeed because I have such a busy lifestyle, but I try.  Being an introvert by nature, I love my “me” time.  The #1 rule for these special Saturdays is no alarm clock. I wake up on my own schedule, read my bible and some magazines or a book, and I just enjoy my morning.  Eventually I begin to anticipate a nice breakfast, or in most cases an early lunch, and because I’m in relaxation mode and I have the time, I always want to fix a large, hearty meal.  Then I usually eat while catching up on tivoed programs (another no-no is eating while watching TV and this is something I’ll eventually work on).  

So that I wouldn’t face too much temptation, today I had my meal planned in advance with the ingredients I bought last Thursday.  I fixed a salad that tasted quite good.  I used the items I bought that I listed in my first Healthy By Choice blog, Facing Reality.  

My brunch was filling, colorful, pleasant on the eyes, easy to fix, and it tasted really good.  The ingredients in the salad are listed under the picture above.  

As I mentioned yesterday, one reason it wasn’t as difficult to stick to the salad today was because I was going to eat dinner at my mom’s house this evening.  I ate the much-anticipated roast and mashed potatoes for dinner, and it was SO GOOD.  My sister Colleen, my niece Gabrielle and my mom worked hard and made a great meal!  But I did not eat the bread on the table, nor did I eat the following items that were in clear sight at my mom’s house:  cupcakes with chocolate icing; Kit Kat bars; peanut M&Ms; Hershey bars; Butterfingers, Oreos, and some kind of scrumptious looking coconut cookies.  And I didn’t look in the fridge for more treats that were on hand like ice cream and apple pie. I only ate what I was anticipating – the meat and potatoes – and that was enough (altho I did slip and ate a couple of potato chips – I must be honest – but not many).  

One thing I must do is stop thinking like I used to think.  In my normal mind-set, I’d think “ok, you’re going to blow it anyway at your mom’s house, so why not make it worthwhile and eat everything you want.”  Then after I would do that, I would of course feel guilty, stuffed, and like a failure, so I would give up.  Tonight I ate what I wanted to eat the most – the meat and potatoes – and didn’t sink into the “I blew it” mentality and eat everything else.  That is a victory in itself.  Because what I am trying to accomplish isn’t going to happen overnight. For now, I am aiming to develop healthier habits and make healthier choices that will last for a lifetime.  Maybe eventually I’ll be skinny and running marathons, but right now I’m just trying to make a few changes at a time.  This will be a battle every day with wins and losses. 

Today there were more victories than defeats.  So it was a good day.  

**NOTE:  The dried cranberries and chopped almonds mentioned in the recipe were in the same packet, found in the salad dressing section and cost $2.99.  This packet contained much less sugar than a packet that contained only dried cranberries.

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