Thursday, 28 July 2011

The First Thing You Lose On A Diet Is Your Sense of Humour

Hiya! I’m so sorry not to have posted yesterday OR to have really upheld my ‘twitter feed’. My hen do was epic – both in terms of fun AND alcohol consumed so, suffice to say, I was feeling a little bit worse for wear yesterday. I had a lot of fun though and was incredibly touched by both the thoughtfulness and of my friends. I only have a couple of photos but once I get more from my friends I'll do a proper re-cap!
One thing I was really pleased with though was that I managed to uphold fairly healthy eating habits, even in the face of my blistering hangover. I ate A LOT – I always do when hungover, dehydration masking itself as endless hunger? – but most of my choices were super healthy. My best friend stayed over and we woke up middayish and headed out to get some snacks. She got stuff for a bacon sandwich whereas I got – get this- ingredients for the massive hummus salad I was craving. Say What? Of course I needed some hangover proper carbs, but I had them in the form of my leftover crackers from Friday night. I also ate some (2 in a row) of these delicious rice puddings with strawberries, plus some more crackers with peanut butter, plus some oatmeal with peanut butter and full fat milk, plus like 5 apples, plus… oh well you get the picture. I was a massive glutton, but I swear I feel better today as a result of being so healthy!
Now my hen do is over though I am realising just how soon my wedding is – help!! I’m really really looking forward to it but I can also feel my old dieting instincts getting more and more desperate to re-surface. I definitely had a few moments of -
‘maybe I could just lose 4 lbs before the wedding and then put them back on again, like if I only ate tuna salad twice a day and then oatmeal and hot water for breakfast I could totally lose 4lbs in 2 weeks and then I could put it back on if necessary so I wouldnt technically be doing anything wrong….’.
NO NO NO! Not only would that be super stupid because I dont actually need to lose any weight - it would also be stupid because mentally I find weight gain such a challenge. If you have my mentality putting on weight is actually harder than losing it.
I do want to look my best though - and there is nothing wrong with that. I just need to remember that looking my best equals looking my healthiest, not looking my most thin. In honour of that I've got to thinking about the steps I can take to ensure I look and feel my best. After years of analysing my response to just about everything I eat, as well as studying for a nutrition degree, I do have a pretty good idea of what works best for me. It's just following it that can sometimes be the challenge. Sometimes those ready meal pizzas look a lot more attractive than the raw salmon fillet! :).
However, this is a very special occasion and I think I can rise to the challenge. When I was thinking about pre-wedding diets I was also thinking about how these wedding photos are going to be something I keep forever - and hopefully show to my children as well. If I have daughters I dont want them to see photos of me maintaining a body weight that is too low for me - I want them to seephotos of me at my healthy weight, looking my best and feeling proud and happy to be me! I don't want them to have a warped idea of what women in my familys natural build is like.
So without further ado these are the health rules - rather than the diet rules! - that I will be trying my very hardest to stick to over the next 10 days. They are about getting my skin and body into the healthiest place possible and will be complimented by a commitment from me not to ever eat less than 1800 calories, or deny myself healthy food when I am hungry, however great the temptation may be.
Old habits may die hard, but at some point they have just got to go! :)
1. No Processed Foods - this shouldn't be too hard as I don't really eat many of them anyhow. But I'm going to throw store bought soups and baked beans - both of which I do eat occassionally - into the mix. I'll make a commitment not to eat anything with ingredient lists that include any additives; preservatives, flavourings, colouring and anything with added salt will all be out the window. This one is really important to me as I know processed foods are the worst things for making my face just look a little 'blah', and anything with added salt seems to activate little cellulite patches virtually immediately!
2. Fill up on Full Fat Milk - sounds a bit weird I know but I find milk to be so sustaining and filling, without ever leaving me bloated. It's also a wonderful post workout food particularly if you have tempermental blood sugar (like me!) - I'll only ever do long runs now if I can make sure I have milk within half an hour afterwards! Whenever I substitute some food for lots of milk I always feel slimmer and find it easier to build muscle, without running risks relating to my hormonal balance. It's a great way of feeling a bit more shapely without decreasing my calories or compromising my health.
3. Eat Oily Fish Every Other Day - have you heard of the face lift diet? I used to do it about once every two months, although I did a much more extreme version where I ate oatmeal and water for breakfast and dry baked salmon with steamed brocolli for both lunch and dinner. Yup, we're talking about 900 calories per day. I will however, admit that is was effective - I do think I looked younger virtually immediately! I now know I don't need or want to go crazy with the restriction, but I am going to try to eat salmon and green vegetables (with generous amounts of olive oil!) as often as my budget will permit it, over the next 10 days.
I will also be trying to pretty much eliminate all refined carbohydrates. I normally have bread a couple of times a week (not counting sprouted breads) and dessert a couple of times a week. I was going to make that one of my 'rules' but then I know what I'm like and I'm sure I would need to break that at least once in the ten days - but I'm okay with that. I'll just keep to fewer guidelines, but ones I know I can stick to. I'll also eating lots of olive oil!
Okay - I need to go get some more sleep – I’m still feeling a bit deprived! I’ll be back tomorrow with the Pad Thai recipe I was talking about before. Although I’m unlikely to have the time to cook it this week (plus I have detox-y style menu plan to live up to and its rather heavy on the salt) it is DELICIOUS and super healthy. If you are craving Thai food I couldn’t recommend it more. Speak soon! xox

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