For the last installment regarding mine and Jen's change in eating habits for the better, I'll go over the additional bonus habits that can be adapted into a daily routine. Then, this week I'll get back to the food, hooray!
Additional Bonus Habits to Adopt
- Keep Food Records
- Keep Activity Records
- Exercise for 60 minutes per day
- Eat 'Real Food' fresh, healthy frozen or canned
- Write daily goals
Keep Food RecordsI have started keeping track of the food I eat during the day on a spreadsheet, and I've found it helpful to look back over the past week or so and recognize some of my problem areas. Turns out I really struggle to get 4 servings of vegetables. What I have noticed absent on my spreadsheet is cookies, ice cream, and chips. I also no longer have a 10 pm, TV-time, full on breakfast of cereal, bagel, yogurt, and banana. Cut off time is now 8 pm for food (which I find I'm seldom hungry), and I now have some green tea during TV time.
Keep Activity RecordsI currently don't keep activity records even though my activity has increased since starting new projects and warming weather allows me to get out with the dog more. My activity record at this point is merely an estimated number of how much exercise I've gotten in a day. It's a guess, really. I would like to start incorporating more exercise into my daily routine as a complete some of the projects I've started, and it will be then that I track in more detail my daily activities.
Eat 'Real Food' fresh, healthy frozen or cannedWe've been working on this transition for some time now, and it does take time, years in fact, to fully transform your refrigerator and pantry. This can be hard on the grocery budget during awkward phases where you're still buying some prepared foods while beginning to stock long and short term fresh ingredients. I look at my grocery list from today and there's not a single item on there that's a finished, prepared food instead of just an ingredient for all fresh foods that I'll prepare this week. To think it was just a little over a year ago when I bought my last jar of spaghetti sauce. To me, this makes shopping fun, and one of the best things anybody can do for themselves diet-wise is just keep trending toward progress while continuing to explore and discover.
Write daily goalsI don't do this, but I can see why it would be helpful. The past few weeks have been a total transformation of my life, for the better. I know I sound like an infomercial or something, but truly I equate following this program to quitting drinking, and especially to quitting smoking. I have done both in the past decade, and both of these things require a complete and total behavioral change, a change in patterns, and a change in the way you do things. It's not easy, but when you get to the other side the rewards are tremendous, and I'm already seeing the benefits.
I think the benefit of writing down daily goals is to keep short term promises to yourself, especially if you're struggling with the new diet, and to keep yourself on task so that you don't find yourself bored and falling back into old habits.
So, I've been doing this habit program for 3 weeks now. How has it benefited me?Jen and those close to me are probably tired about hearing how good I feel lately, so instead of going into my monologue in text, I'll just make a quick bullet list.
- I've lost 10 lbs in the past 2 1/2 weeks
- I feel energized after eating rather than lethargic and fatigued
- I feel comfortable after eating rather than bloated and over-full
- I'm proud of Jen and myself for adapting this plan, making some drastic changes, and seeing this through as far as we have
- There are fewer dishes to wash every day
- I've been doing remarkably well with my IBS symptoms (knock on wood)
- I've been sleeping better
- I've been able to accomplish so much during the day because my blood sugar isn't on a roller coaster ride
- The dog has been getting more exercise outside
I don't foresee becoming like this extreme health food blog or anything, but I certainly look forward to exploring and sharing a whole new realm of healthier possibilities. Thanks for reading; I hope you found something useful in all of this or at least enjoyed reading about it.