Who'd have thought an egg could bring me to the point of food meltdown?
One of the key components you find in folks who have long term success with healthy living and weight loss is planning. I like to say that fitness doesn't happen by accident, it happens on purpose. It requires a series of constant decisions day in and day out. I don't wake up every day and feel like eating right or exercising. It's a decision I make. Each day I have a choice- junk or no junk. I understand that there are consequences to each decision I make. Junk leads to an increase of junk in my trunk. I happen to like my pants, so in an effort to keep them fitting correctly I make a point of eating correctly and working out.
A key to making this process easier on me is prepping food in advance when ever possible. All hail refrigeration! With a fridge and freezer you can set up your food for a good chunk of the week ahead of time. I typically engage in food prep twice a week. Sunday I do the bulk of my cooking. Wednesday I usually engage in additional prep to make it through the week.
As part of my routine, I have to plan out what I'm eating for the week ahead. Now over the years I've developled a pretty consistent menu. It makes my life easier. The current rotation includes:
Steel cut oats, protein powder, blueberries, oat bran
Black beans, an Ezekiel brand sprouted grain muffin, green leafy bits, tomatoes
Peanut butter bison chili (contains ground bison, natural peanut butter, canned tomatoes, canned black beans), green leafy bits.
Granola recipe courtesy of Gourmet Nutrition, which contains nuts, oatmeal, cranberries, coconut milk, honey, and I supplement with protein powder
Tempeh (a fermented soy product), avocado, broccoli
Grapefruit and low fat cottage cheese
This is a pretty good, healthy menu. I'd been shifting to plant based foods over the last couple months in order to keep the budget under control. It's affordable and I'd set it up to meet the macronutrient ratios I've been using to plan my food intake. In a nutshell, the system of eating I used to get my weight down originally uses a roughly 40% carbohydrate, 40%protein and 20% fat ratio. By increasing or decreasing portion size I can raise or low my caloric intake. I know this works. It's worked for years.
But I also know it's not the only way to eat. Endurance athletes eat a much higher carbohydrate diet. Bodybuilders can go much lower carb. I know this.
So there's no good reason for my brain to have decided to run to a corner screaming when I entered a rough outline of my intended food for the week.
Steel cut oats, protein (gotta work on figuring out how to drop this), oat bran, flax seed, blueberries
Black bean burgers, green leafy bits, tomatoes, Ezekiel muffin, honey
Granola- oatmeal, nuts, coconut milk, cranberries and no protein powder (sloooooow breath in, slow out)
Peanut butter bison chili, made with grass fed bison, natural pb, and low salt tomatoes. Dried beans. Side of leafy green bits
Grapefruit, whole yard raised chicken egg (sloooow inhale)
Macro breakdown- 53% carbohydrate, 21% protein, 26% fat. Cue minor breakdown. My numbers aren't right! There's not enough protein, and there's an egg in there!
The egg. Long villianized as an evil food. Source of cholesterol and bad things. Yet, I'm being told that correctly raised eggs, not so bad. So I invested in yard raised chicken eggs at $4 a dozen. Supposed to taste better, and actually a good source of quality fats.
I go back and check my numbers. I'm still below the recommended 10 grams per day of saturated fat. So…what's my problem?
The same thing that was a problem when I started losing weight. Habits. In this case much better habits, but habits none the less. It's a new game, with a new set of rules. Which means I can't just default back to easy. I have to look at things and make the effort to make these changes work.
I have to put faith in myself and the knowledge and skills I've developed. I know intellectually that my meals are just fine. So I have to let go of the fear, take a deep breath, and move forward into a new little world. I don't want to forget what I've learned, but I have to learn how to reapply that knowledge. Which in this case means ignoring macro ratios and eating the darned egg.