*****Since the writing of this post I have become a BeachBody Coach. Click here for more information about Shakeology or to sign up for a 21 Day Fix Challenge group**********************
I finished Round One of the 21 day fix last week and here is what I learned. I am an emotional eater, and I can only avoid sweets for so long. Ok, these were not ground breaking things. I knew this about myself. What changed is I was forced to confront these issues and kind of (not totally) deal with them. I have done a ton of diets in the past and have had some success (but mostly not.) I think the difference was I was finally ready to deal with some of my food related issues.
I will started with moderation. I could not moderate the amount of food I eat. I was using food as a reward and crutch. I wrote about this in my post Eureka! Portion Control. Having to put all my food in specifically sized, color coded little containers gave me pause to ask myself why I was really hungry. If I was really hungry. Was my body giving my signs I was hungry? In most cases the answer was no. I really struggled with this the first week. My emotional safety net of food was gone. What was I going to do? It was tough to confront that. Removing the food from this equation left me with a giant hole of stress and emotion that I had to sort thru.
Having to stop and fill a container or cook something made me think and feel, instead of just reach for another cookie, then another, and so on. I thought about what I really wanted. Was it time alone? Was it for my kids to stop bickering? Was it to have some peace and quiet? In almost every case it wasn’t food I really needed. I was not successful on all the occasions when this occurred, but I was a lot more aware of what I was feeling when it did happen. Having to write out my feelings has helped me immensely. I felt I had a place for my feeling to go, instead of dulling them with food. I can’t express what a game changer this was.
The other thing was the visual aspect of the containers. It really helped hit home how much food I needed to feel satiated physically.It was no where as much as what I was eating prior. I felt I became more in tuned to what my body wanted and when it asked for food.
In the morning by week three, I found I was able to wait until I really felt hungry and my stomach was growling before I reached for a snack. This has never happened. I mean never on any other diet. Prior to this, I would count down the minutes until I could eat again. It was so freeing to not think about food all the time. To feel like I was in the drivers seat. I know your suppose to eat for fuel, but I never felt like that in my life. I eat for fun, for emotional reasons, for social reasons, but never for sustenance. After having kids, I rarely ever let my stomach feel empty. On this plan I didn’t feel overly hungry or overly feed. I just felt well…normal. I cooked and eat when I was hungry. Like a normal person.
The only really downside came in week three when I started to crave sweets BAD. The plan allowed for for some specially designed “fix approved” sweets in limited amounts, but that wasn’t cutting it. What I found was that once I had some sweets I would slip back into my old, over consumptive ways. One cookie was still not enough for me. I had to eat more. So this is still a sticking point for me. I know that is something I will have to work on in Round Two.
The other really interesting benefit was that I found I could only squeeze in the workouts early in the morning. So I got up early everyday and did them. I didn’t make an excuse because they are only half and hour and my son was getting up anyway.Once I made the decision to be consistent and not make up excuses, I found that I actually enjoyed it.
So all in all, I’m pretty happy with the results. I lost 5 lbs in 3 weeks. Not a grand weight lose but I lost more in inches around my waist, hips an thighs. The real change came in how I felt. I know I have far to go on my food moderation journey, but the 21 day fix really helped to set me on the right track. Round two starts tomorrow. I’ll check in again in another month.