For the majority of my adult life one of my major pet peeves has been people who constantly worry about their food consumption. I have been a big proponent of eating whatever made me happy in the moment for basically ever. I never understood why people could not eat at certain restaurants and why they would constantly talk about the nutritional value of everything that they were considering putting into their body. I am now that person that used to drive me crazy, and quite honestly, I don’t know how to feel about it.
I went to the casino the other night with my friend. We were looking to get dinner before the comedy show we were seeing, and she asked what I wanted. I immediately responded with, “I need to go somewhere that I can get a salad with grilled chicken.” As the words spilled out of my mouth I couldn’t help but wonder who I had become. We had to look at about five different places before we could find somewhere that I could eat. When it was time to order I had to ask the waitress to take a bunch of items off of the salad and to replace the dressing with oil and vinegar. I used to hate when people altered their food choice until it was basically something completely different, but there I was being that guy.
A couple of days later I decided I would go to opening night of roller derby to watch some of my old leaguemates play. Guess what I brought with me. A freakin’ lunchbox with plan approved snacks, bottled water, and a couple pieces of gum just in case I had a severe craving. No more beer and pizza while I screamed my brains out as the players knocked each other to the ground. I had my low carb bar and water so that was basically the same thing, right?
I ended up getting sick shortly after that. My throat was burning like whoa and I wanted a cough drop. Instead of just allowing myself to put a cough drop into my mouth to experience some relief, do you know what I did? I did a Google search to see how many carbs were in a cough drop. Can you believe that a regular ol’ cough drop can have 3 or 4 carbs in it?! I couldn’t believe it either. So rather than doing myself a solid and experiencing the lemon honey goodness of a Halls I popped some cold meds and hoped for the best.
I honestly have completely mixed feelings about this “new me.” I am happy that I am making healthier choices, and proud of the will power I have somehow accrued, but sad that so much of my life needs to be spent thinking about when and what I can eat. I liked being able to go out anywhere I wanted when I wanted and being able to order something directly as is off of the menu. I liked popping 75 cough drops a day until the burning in my throat subsided. I enjoyed my beer and pizza. At the end of the day, however, I know the fact that I just recently got the lowest blood pressure reading I have pretty much ever had, the most normal period I have ever had, and the fact that I have basically no anxiety since starting this plan tells me that I am doing something right for my body. Life needs to be a balance, and I am still struggling to find out what that means for me. I went from having no control to almost having too much, and I am working on finding a middle ground.
As for my friends who only eat at certain restaurants and constantly talk about the nutritional value of everything you are putting into your body, I see you. I now understand you, at least somewhat, and I say you do you. We all have to do what makes us happy. I will do my best to judge you, and myself, less because at the end of the day, we’re just trying to do right by this vessel that we live in.