Friday, February 26, 2010

The Comfortable Stage

I've been doing the weekday veggie thing about a month now. So far I've been able to stick to it for the most part given a couple holidays and my justification of sushi. The last few days I've been thinking about what the point of the veggie thing is. Is it to be healthier? Is it to reduce my calorie intake? Is it to save cows? The answer is yes to the first two and kind of to the cows. Sorry cows.

I realize now that I'm slipping into the comfortable stage. This is the stage in anyone's lifestyle change (or any other project/change) where you stop thinking about what you're doing and start justifying doing things the way you did them before. It's the most dangerous stage because if you don't trudge through with stubborn force, you'll never come out having changed anything. Everyone should know what I'm talking about. I've hit this wall.

I caught myself at lunch yesterday really grappling with this. We went out to the Rogue Brewery for lunch since Paul got a free stein and a t-shirt for his birthday. Of course I had a beer with him because it would be wrong of me not to. As I searched through the menu I tried to stay honed in on the salads. When those didn't seem promising I tried finding vegetarian options. There weren't any outside the salads. So I looked for fish. That didn't sound too appealing so I started looking at the rest of the menu. Kobe beef meatballs, reuben sandwiches, meat meat meat, fat fat fat. I thought, it's Paul's birthday, surely it's okay to eat what I want today.

And then I caught myself. I began to think about the rest of the day. I knew we'd be eating dinner at Todai's and that I would probably eat mostly fish, but that in a buffet situation I was bound to consume far more calories than I could control. And they are expensive and I wanted to eat my money's worth! I knew that this would be enough to jeopardize my day and that if I ate a big burger for lunch I'd be weighing in the same again this week. Sure, it's one meal. But every meal is one meal. I have to start thinking about these little slips in weekly terms rather than in terms of that one instance. Because I choose to splurge more times than I choose to control myself. This is my norm. This is where I start to revert to when I've hit the comfortable stage. When I realized this, I chose to fight!

I ended up ordering the black bean and quinoa salad, the only real vegetarian option on the menu besides bread. I wasn't very excited about it, but when I finally got it it was so good! I had a tiny bite of Paul's meatball sandwich and I was actually happier with my choice.  At Todai'se I ate some crab legs, a shrimp, a small bite of beef short ribs, and some sushi. While I could have done even better than that, I still feel like I didn't overdo it and most of my meal was udon noodles and seaweed besides these tidbits. I feel good about having made conscientious choices even if I did eat more than I should have.

Now I just have to master my urge to eat cake and sweets and I'll be on the right track!


  1. Bethany: this is the most inspiring post I have seen,from you....
    It is SO TRUE...every meal is ONE MEAL... so much of what you said hit home with me. It is hard to look at the whole week,and not just "this meal"
    It sounds to me that you are arriving at some very valuable lessons. And teaching myself and others as you go. You should teach weight watchers or something.
    thank you!