What’s the plan?
I remember once laughing heartily at a smoking cessation advert on TV that featured the small print ‘willpower required’. Of course willpower is required, that goes without saying. Yet throughout 20 years of weight struggle it is the one thing that has consistently alluded me.
I have had bursts of success. The Body Coach plan was a solid eight weeks of following a strict food and exercise regime yet the wheels came off at Christmas time. Reflecting on my efforts to date it seems that it is either all or nothing. It is either 21 meals and 14 snacks planned for the week ahead along with exercise routines or no plan, no clue and no desire to eat well and work out.
Moving forward I’ve had the epiphany that it needs to be somewhere further down the scale for it to succeed. I need to regimentation of routine but a little flexibility built in to make it sustainable in the longer term. I need to realise than one bad meal doesn’t mean writing off the whole week.
Breaking down my current malaises should help me identify the first places to make changes. Some of these are going to hurt as they are some of my favourite things, but this isn’t going to be an easy journey.
Whilst it isn’t a pretty picture across the board, my main downfalls food wise are
- Fizzy drinks, in particular ‘full fat’ Coca Cola
- Sweets and chocolate
- Fast food
The list seems short yet the impact these poor choices have is huge. I can (and often do) drink more than one litre of Coca Cola a day. 420 calories and 27g of sugar before I have even had a meal or snack!
Add a few Haribo and a Toffee Crisp to this and the calorie and sugar count is rocketing.
These two issues on their own would be bad news, but coupled with a love of Chinese, Indian and Lebanese take away food plus trips to McDonald’s and Burker King are ringing alarm bells very loudly.
Rather than cut them all out completely I am planning to mitigate them and dilute dependency over time. I plan to replace fizzy drinks with diet or zero sugar versions as a short-term aim but ideally would cut them out altogether. Sweets and chocolate will be limited and downsized in the first instance. A fun size bar should meet the craving at less than half the calorific hit.
As far as takeaway and fast food are concerned, I need to realise that they are force of habit and not are nowhere near as satisfying as anticipated. Following the mantra of fakeaways (homemade versions of takeaway type dishes) I should be able to get the enjoyment of these dishes with the bonuses of lower calorie content, knowing exactly what has gone in to the dish and a better taste.
Roll on the sugar withdrawal headaches…