Charting life's circuitous path

Eat. Live. Be. for a Better 2011 – Allowing for Weaknesses

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My update: I’m already beginning to yearn for the warm days of summer.  With temps in the mid-80s today, you’d think I’d be happy.  Not so when you can see the leaves turning gold and feel the crispness in the air that signals Fall.

We made sure to work in two walks this weekend and both were glorious!  The first was filled with warm sunshine, a white chocolate Snow Cap drink and cinnamon scone at our local coffee shop with good books via the library.

I’ve come to realize that as I embrace walking, I’m learning to love my local shops more and more.  We had the option of going into the Starbucks across the street but opted for the little locally-owned store with their rickety iron chairs outside and warm cakes inside.

I love a place that proudly sells day old cake for half off on top of the worn, wooden counter.  Something honest and good about a store that doesn’t try to be too trendy.

Unfortunately the mosquitoes reminded my husband that they weren’t giving up summer just yet.  We paid for sitting outside with our drinks, but it was a wonderful way to spend an afternoon.

The second walk on Sunday wasn’t filled with goodies, but it was wonderful to get out of the house and stroll for a bit.  A walk relaxes us and makes us think of fun topics to talk about – everything from future houses, latest gossip to weighty news stories.  Walking and talking flow together and its easy to discuss inner ideas outside of confining walls and narrow couches.

To me, there’s nothing more sad than a couple that doesn’t talk.  I saw a few of these couples and families recently and I marveled at how they could spend their entire lunch silently eating and avoiding each other’s gazes.  The hubby and I are only silent when our mouths are too full with delicious food to speak.

iChallenge 37 – Allowing for Weaknesses

(and not beating yourself up about them)

I have a confession.

In between all of the bok choy, egg substitute, oatmeal and skim milk lies a weakness.

Let me describe it to you:

  • it’s generally square in shape although it can be round, oblong or sharp-edged
  • it’s generally full of sugar, spices and, well, more sugar
  • it pairs with milk and makes the milk taste glorious (what with all of that sugar)
  • it’s crunchy
  • it’s soft
  • it comes in a box

It’s cereal.

I can eat cereal any time during the day, although I love it at night.  It’s my snack and I actually have it factored into my meal plan in advance.

It’s not an option.  It’s something I look forward to even when I wake up.

My cereal of choice?  Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

It’s like crack in cereal form and I hope they never attempt to make it healthy.  Personally, I love the sugar that gathers at the bottom of my milk bowl when I’m done crunching my way through every last square.

I don’t know why they bother with the health claims on the box.  No one is fooled into thinking that this is anything but what it really is:  sugar and more sugar.

But that’s what I love about it.  It’s sugar and cinnamon and crunchy and yummy.  It’s everything my sweet tooth craves, but it’s not going to undermine my calorie count.  I gleefully sink my spoon into the bowl for my next watering mouthful, or I stick my hand directly into the box and snatch a few untainted pieces.

My other weakness?  Cinnamon baked goods.

If it has cinnamon baked into it, I’m sure to eat it, and I’m even more likely to eat more than I should.  The coffee shop we went to Saturday?  Notice how we had the cinnamon scone rather than any of the other fruit cakes on offer?  I could have left without any baked yummy, but that would have been sacrilege and would require penance.

Trying to be healthy and eating cinnamon baked goods don’t really go hand in hand.

I realized this early on and for a while, I stopped eating it.  I kept myself from succumbing by not baking or buying it.  This worked only until I was faced with a deep craving for buns, rolls and cookies that left me unhappy and also unsatisfied with bland my rice krispies (I even ground some cinnamon on top of some at one point – yes, I’m pathetic and no, it didn’t work).

Now I just accept it as part of my “diet”.  I know my weakness and I’ve worked it into my plans.  I’ve made room for the extra calories, and I make up for splurges with exercise.  Since abstaining from buns is out of the question, I try to limit my consumption to those tasty treats that are worth my time.  Cinnamon buns from the ice cream parlor?  Never again.  Too bland and too “oily” for my tastes.  Cinnamon scone split with hubby?  Definitely!  Cinnamon rolls freshly baked at home?  Sure thing!  And I can make them healthier by subbing ingredients.

Foods don’t have to be completely off limits, especially if you love them.  We eat ice cream, but only when it comes from our two favorite parlors.  Store bought ice cream?  Not if we can help it.  I’ve given up on chips except at other people’s houses where the bag doesn’t come home and social pressure keeps me from eating the whole bowl.  Do I crave them when we get home? No.  Because they aren’t baked (heaven forbid!) and they don’t contain cinnamon and sugar.

I know what will trigger me and what won’t.  If I can safely forget about it, then I won’t buy it.  If deprivation leads to over-indulgence, then I allow myself that treat and consider it a crucial part of my plan.

It also gives me extra motivation to keep exercising. 😉


Author: iscribbler

A girl scribbling her way through health, love, food and life.

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