Monday, August 1, 2011

Balancing My Weight Gluten Free–Treats

 

Previous Balancing My Weight posts:

Trifecta of Trouble

The Young Years

********************************************************

I’ve really enjoyed the emails that I’ve been receiving since starting this series. It seems that so many of us have struggled with the same troublemakers! And in writing it out for the post, I realized how long the trifecta was causing trouble before I even realized it.

Solutions!

Coming up in the series, I wanted to discuss my own personal solutions to the trifecta, starting with:

Trifecta

I was most surprised by how many readers were right there with me on this one! And I think it’s a very common feeling in the first few months…err…years of your diagnosis, to feel like you’re missing out with your new gluten free life. (I mean..hello…there is a magazine called ‘Living Without’…eesh)

It can be so easy to focus on what you can’t have, instead of what you can.

But I’ve never liked that point of view.

I like to focus on the positive, like how great I feel. And I consider myself lucky, there is a treatment for the symptoms of Celiac Disease. There are so many other diseases that have no treatments.

Positivity is also why I changed the name of my blog. Long time readers may remember that when I started blogging, the name was: gluten hates me but I’m surviving. But once I grew accustomed to my new diet, I didn’t feel like I was surviving; I was thriving.

At the same time, I was “treating” myself. And I knew it wasn’t in the right way, because 9 times out of 10 I felt guilty about it. But I was in a vicious cycle. I needed to make a change.

Then it happened.

I ran my first 5k.

5k 007

And on the ride home, I thought about stopping at Whole Foods for a treat, but then I thought again. I wanted something more special to remember that day, and so I swung in to Barnes and Noble instead and bought:

5k 022

a healthy cookbook.

And it sounds silly, but it was a light bulb.

I don’t have to treat myself with FOOD.

Duh.

I can treat myself with a new cookbook…or a membership at the YMCA…

or a massage…or new workout clothes, no gluten given up there!

And you know what was pretty surprising? The more I treated myself with healthy treats, the healthier I became.

About six months after that initial 5k, I was having a rough week. I was tired, stressed, and at the end of my work day I was just spent. In the past, I would have treated myself to a big bowl of pasta. The power of carbs. But I didn’t. Instead I stopped by Whole Foods on my way home and bought the latest issue of Real Simple and a sparkling water. It didn’t hit me until I was at home relaxing on the couch, that my first instinct hadn’t been a previous bad habit (PASTA), it had been a healthy one!

My only regret is that I didn’t have this realization before my wedding! Winking smile 

Planning a wedding, and buying a house = BIG stress.

Now I’m not saying that a treat always involves spending big bucks either. But I do feel that an investment in your health is always a good investment, no matter how big or small.

And I’m also not saying that you should NEVER treat yourself with food. Because let me tell you, somedays I deserve an iced coffee from Starbucks. It’s all about portions and balance.

But I AM out of that vicious cycle, because I don’t feel deprived and when I treat myself, I try to make it healthy.

What’s your favorite way to treat yourself?

****************

For the next post in the series, I’m going to talk about a change I made that really influenced my weight. It’s easy…and hard. Next Monday!