Archive for May 6th, 2009

When Food Triggers Converge

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I had a fun weekend planned last weekend. I took Friday and Monday off from work and my daughter and I took a road trip to Virginia (8 hours on a good day) to visit my sister and family. The last time I saw my sister (while I talk to her every day) was at the very beginning of my weight loss journey. I think I’d dropped about 6 pounds then. Now it’s 52. It had been too long.

I had good intentions. I really did. I packed all of my Weight Watchers friendly snack foods (apples, Fiber One muffins, WW cookies and brownies for those moments when you just need something sweet) and had lots of water on hand. I knew Kate would want to stop somewhere for dinner so I didn’t bother packing “real” food. I was thinking pizza. I could fit pizza into my plan.

Yeah, ok. I ate a good breakfast but then we didn’t get on the road until 11:30, which on a good day would get us into Richmond around 7:00. It was Friday. That’s never a good day to travel. We did ok this day until dinner. And then one word… Arby’s.

I don’t do fast food anymore. Well, I didn’t before the weekend. Foodwise, the weekend went downhill from there…like a speeding train with no brakes.

It wasn’t until I got back on Sunday night with a stomach ache from all the crappy food we ate that I realized, my weekend was the perfect storm of food triggers and I just about drowned in the swells.

I was taking a road trip. Pre- “getting fit,” this always meant M&Ms and lots of other bad-for-you foods. It didn’t matter if we got in the car at 6:00 am. We started eating junk, along with diet coke, almost immediately.

I was visiting my sister. In my family, food was always the center…whether we were trying not to eat or celebrating, it was always the center. Some things never change.

I have a cold. My first couple of days off in a really long time, and I’m getting away and I’m sick. Not horribly sick, but headachy and coughing and congested. So I was feeling sorry for myself. I deserved a snack, don’t you think?

And I was PMSing, I realized yesterday, because, well, I stopped PMSing. And that’s the one time of the month, I have real resistance issues to anything with sugar. And I mean anything….

It was a bad food weekend. And no exercise… vacation, remember? But it was only three days.

And on Monday, even though I was still technically on “vacation,” I got back to a healthy eating and exercise regimen and I felt much better.

In hindsight, while I’ll probably tremble while stepping on the scale at WW tomorrow hoping the damage wasn’t too bad, it was a good test. Three days of food revelry left me feeling less than healthy….my poor tummy really resisted that last fast food burger; and getting back to “normal” felt, well, normal. And good.

So I failed the travel test. And I don’t know that I’ll ever vacation completely “healthy,” even though I did make some good food choices between the french fries and Whoopie Pies. But I passed a much more important test. I came home. And went right back to my healthy lifestyle, happily. I don’t miss the junk. In fact, I prefer my better choices.

And now I know. Next time, because there will be a next time, I’ll travel when I’m not PMSing…at least.