I wanted to give you all an update on our progress after moving to "Clean Eating."
First off, WE LOVE IT! (I'm including Brian in this statement, though I know he'd agree).
I have never in my entire life been this content with food. God heard my cry and answered my prayer! I have spent the better part of my life planning my next meal at the meal I'm currently eating. I took joy in planning dinner during lunch! I craved food. Looking back now, I realize how much food consumed me. What I just thought it was a passion, was really it was an obsession. Isn't it interesting how we confuse the two? I have come to realize that my PASSION is investing in my family and not all things food.
I have a dear friend who has a gluten allergy and I used to crack up when we'd go out to eat... she would ask a thousand questions, pick food part and have a ton of special request. I have to admit, it was annoying...but now I realize that I've become her! My questions are endless when I sit down at a restaurant---I now try to make the best choices possible. I will say though sitting at a table and have to pass the bread basket on to the next person is one of the hardest temptations I face. I LOVE A GOOD BREAD BASKET!
I'm finding it natural now to say, "I'll have a water with lemon, does that salad dressing have sugar in it?, or do you know if that bread is 100% whole wheat?...." Yes, I have had to stay away from some of my old favorite restaurants (ex: Mexican and Chick fil A)---but the more time that passes and I haven't been, I don't find myself thinking about it...or craving it. It took a lot of willpower for me to pull up at the drive-thru at Chick fil A a few weeks ago and order an 8 count Grilled Nuggets and a water. I basically used to live off of the #5 combo, 8 pack with sweet tea and 3 Chick fil A sauces!
Throughout this change, we truly have enjoyed cooking and eating at home. Brian and I get in the kitchen together and cook. It's not just me taking over and being territorial of the kitchen ( I was looking for praise from him after I cooked a good meal). Its really turned into being our "couch time" as we call it in small group. It's our time to talk about our day,dreams for the future (like how'd we arrange the layout of the kitchen, if we could afford it!haha), what's going on the following day, etc. We both have found it challenging to go out and find stuff that we can eat. (I have more willpower than Brian with this...but I have a lot more weight to get off than him...so I let him slide!) I think the biggest thing is that at home, we have control over what goes into our food. Let me state, we have not sacrificed flavor during the switch...we now use REAL products. It's amazing when you use real butter or real sour cream, how much less of it you really need.
During my birthday weekend, I found myself almost having a panic attack about eating my birthday cake. I was scared that If I had a taste of the cake, that I would fall off the wagon and never get back on. (considering this is what I've always done before) I had to have a "come to Jesus" with myself and realize that IT'S OK to eat "bad" things every once in awhile. If I am going to really make this work for the long haul, I need to be realistic. So in the past Month and 25 days... I've had cake on special occasions (birthdays and at weddings), we've ordered pizza (when I've been too overwhelmed or tired to cook) and I have split a piece of cheesecake at Cheesecake Factory. Through all those times, I've still managed to bounce back and get back to my plan.
My biggest accomplishments have been that I have given up fried food and soda. Also that we have moved to 100% whole wheat and natural sugars. (Brian is still having a tough time with the pasta and rice...he loves white rice and pasta! I don't really taste a difference.) I would also say changing the way I grocery shop is another one of my accomplishments. We used to go to the store several times a week. Now we go once. I spend an hour on Sundays planning out our entire weeks worth of meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner). We shop on Sunday afternoon for an entire 7 days. Our grocery bills have been averaging $120-$150 per week. The majority of our shopping occurs in the outter aisles--- consisting of Veggies, Fruits, Proteins and Dairy. Our new "chips" are triscuits and occasionally we will have cereal (Cheerios, because I buy them for Grady) with a banana and walnuts. I've started a binder of "Clean/Whole Grain" Recipes that I reference weekly for inspiration, as well as I utilize Pinterest and blogs.
I'm officially down 15 pounds, Brian is down 8..But more importantly...what I feel like once controlled my life, isn't anymore. I'm not living to eat... I'm eating to live.
Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest for my collection of recipes.