Hello Paleo Friends!
I have been noticeably absent from my blog for almost two weeks! Yikes! As I have posted before, the "crunch" time of my busy Spring came with the move of my parents from Houston to San Antonio, then the state-mandated accountability test the following week for my students. All in all, everything went off as planned and I am past it all and finally back to "normal" life...if there is actually such a thing as normal life anymore! LOL! Despite the stress, travel, late night schedules, hectic and endless "to do" lists...I was able to stay Paleo throughout it all. It is funny how at first I was so consumed with planning our menus and making a detailed grocery list. I don't even give these things a second thought now. Eating Paleo seems to be easy and I don't really have to think of things to prepare anymore. I just throw something together every night or pick something up on the way home that follows the Paleo guidelines and we are good to go. Paleo has not only become easy, it has just become the default way we eat now.
All of this being said, I did encounter my very first time to "cheat" on the Paleo diet last weekend. I was out with friends enjoying good company and laughter. I was relaxing and decompressing (is that a real word?) from a very stressful weekend of moving my parents, getting them settled into their new home, and giving my students the HUGE test. We were at a local Mexican restaurant...sitting out on the deck in beautiful weather and it was just gorgeous and SO nice to have so many stressful events finally behind me. One of my friends ordered a bowl of queso. I have been at this same restaurant once before since starting Paleo and that time, I did not partake of any chips or appetizers or queso. But this time...for some reason...I just felt like I wanted a cheese covered chip. I had been through the most stressful month of my life and I guess there was a small part of me on the inside that wanted to say, "Heck, I deserve it!"
I continued visiting with my friends for quite some time while thinking about that darn bowl of melted cheese and peppers in front of me. At some point, I realized that I was thinking about that bowl of cheese much more than I was paying attention to the conversation. Seriously, what's up with that? If the thought of food, even just a particular bite of food, is consuming your attention that much, then maybe you should just go ahead and eat it. So....I did. I had 3 or 4 cheese covered chips as a matter of fact!
Were they good? Yes.
Were they delicious? A most definite Yes.
Did they satisfy my craving? Yes
Was I able to stop before devouring the entire bowl? Of course.
Did those few chips mess with my head and make me obsess about chips and queso for days? No.
Did those few chips with queso ruin my attempt to live a healthy Paleo diet? Nope.
Did I immediately give up and order a plate of enchiladas, rice, and beans? No way.
Did those bites of deliciousness ruin this attempt at a healthier life? Not in the least!
Was I able to wake up the next day still focused on eating Paleo and being healthy? Absolutely!
It's this last question that amazes me the most. I have a history of dieting, doing very well for a few weeks, sometimes even a month or two (like now), and then slipping off the band wagon. Once I get off once, I find it so hard to keep going. I am somewhat of an obnoxious perfectionist at heart. If I cannot do something perfectly, then I do not want to do it at all. I beat myself up and just give up. I am my own worst enemy. I have NEVER been able to just put a bad day behind me and go on like nothing happened. I have always eventually returned to my bad habits, have started sneaking food, have eventually regained any weight lost. In short, I have always been a diet failure.
I still can't put my finger on it...but this time there is something different. I woke up the next day with no desire whatsoever to "cheat" again. I just simply had some berries and almonds for breakfast and kept to my normal routine. This was 3 days ago and I still have been able to go back 100% Paleo with no desire to "cheat" again.
I have been so scared of that first bite that wasn't Paleo. I have always slid down that slippery slope faster than a speeding bullet. Once I falter, I have historically just given up and resigned myself to the fact that I will always be the ugly, fat girl.
Not sure why it is so different time. But that slope was not slippery at all for me. I had a few bites off and then was able to immediately resume my healthy Paleo lifestyle. I don't know why. I guess I need to do some more soul searching for the answer. But, all I can say at this moment is "I am glad that I am not sliding away!"