Friday, April 11, 2014

Travelling Didn't Make Me Fat

I just got back from a business trip to New Jersey.  I'll write more about what I did while I was there, but there's something else on my mind right now.  Travelling is always difficult with weight loss.  It disrupts my schedule so exercise becomes more difficult.  I have a less controlled environment, which makes eating the right things more difficult.  So I was concerned that my weight loss would hit a bump in the road this week.

I was particularly concerned because I've been at a bit of a plateau lately.  Even though I lost a full inch off my waist last month, my total weight loss for March was 0.4 pounds.  But in the first week of April, I lost an additional pound, so I was finally making progress again.  I didn't want this week of travel to undermine my progress so that I couldn't catch up again until the end of the month.

When I go on vacation, I often give myself a bit of leeway to just enjoy it, and accept that it might take a week or two to make up my losses.  But since this was a business trip and not a vacation, I wanted to save my free pass to eat for my cruise this summer.  (Because there is going to be some serious deliciousness on that cruise ship.)

I think I did pretty well.  It wasn't the easiest thing in the world.  The first thing that's difficult is that my normal routine includes eating 6 times a day.  I have breakfast, lunch and dinner, with 3 snacks on top of that.  I've read that doing that keeps your metabolism up all day.  But that's not why I do it.  I do it so that I'm able to eat small meals but not feel like I'm starving to death by the next meal.  I'm also able to keep all sorts of healthy snacks on hand.  I usually have apples, oranges and nuts at my desk at work.  I also love to cook up asparagus or other vegetables in the afternoons.  On this trip I spent 3 days in a conference room.  I didn't think other people would appreciate it if I kept a bag of apples on the conference room table.

This meant I had to eat more at my meals.  That's not terrible except for 2 reasons.  One is that I have trained my body to stop at a certain point, and I don't know how to go beyond that point to the point where I can last for 4 or 5 hours without a snack but without overeating as well.  The other is that the catered meals I was eating did not have very many options for fruits and vegetables.  But I did my best, trying to take reasonable portions, and eating whatever vegetables were offered.  The one day there was a salad option, I took a heaping plate of it and I was very excited.

One evening I went out to eat with a group of managers and other individuals who had traveled from out of town.  I was really proud of myself.  I ordered a dish from the lite menu that was mainly chicken and vegetables.  It was delicious and I was satisfied.  Then it came time to order dessert.

I'm used to being the weird guy.  I was already the weird guy that drank water instead of wine with my meal.  I was the weird guy who didn't order any coffee.  But being the weird guy who didn't get any dessert was just too much.  (I probably could have handled being weird, but I really didn't want to sit there and watch everyone else eat delicious dessert.)  So I did splurge that night, and got a delicious chocolate peanut butter mousse.  It was the greatest thing in my life and totally worth it.

I figured out after the first day that I could take a couple apples from the breakfast buffet in the hotel and put those in my hotel room for the evening.  That allowed me to have a healthy snack after dinner which meant I could eat smaller portions during dinner.

Even with a few splurges and without my normal routine, I totally didn't gain any weight this whole week.  I was very proud of myself.

That's probably way more details than you wanted to read about my daily habits.  I guess I wrote this just to illustrate the kind of mental shift that is required to lose weight.  Sometimes even with that mental shift, it's a lot harder without the tools that you've filled your environment with.  But it's still possible.

Sorry if this post bored you.  Congratulations if you made it all the way to the end.  I promise I'll write about some of the things I did on the trip very soon.  Hopefully, that will be more interesting.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so proud of you! I didn't do as well as you while you were gone. I guess you are part of my routine! It is a good thing I lost weight anyway (I'm not really sure how that happened)


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