Moderation with Treats- Is It Possible?

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moderation with treats

Moderation is the single thing I struggle the most with in terms of this healthy living and weight loss journey. It’s actually kind of good in one way because lately, I have been REALLY into working out. It started at the beginning of July when I wasn’t quite ready to commit to tracking everything I was eating, but I was ready to commit to an exercise routine after being off the wagon and just generally feeling weak and unfit.

I made a commitment to myself to workout 3 or 4 times a week and to focus on not just running. And you know what? It stuck. Since that time almost 5 months ago, I’ve been consistently working out closer to 5 or 6 times a week, and something doesn’t feel quite right when I take a rest day. It’s almost like I have to force myself to, because I’ve been so fixated on exercise lately. I can honestly say, I have never in my life been in a place like this before with my fitness and certainly wouldn’t have guessed I ever would be.

I can’t say the lack of moderation is as good of a thing as it pertains to eating, though. Since I grew up having such an unhealthy relationship with food, my natural inclination is to classify foods as either good or bad. Back before I’d lost any weight, I would go  between trying to be “good” and then throwing in the towel when I had something “bad” and that cycle went on for so many years in my life that it is ingrained.

I know it goes against popular opinion to argue that food really IS good or bad, but I have a hard time moving myself away from that belief, even now. We all know that fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins are GOOD for us, and nachos, ice cream, pizza, and french fries are… well, not.

And even this far into my healthiness journey, I still majorly struggle with introducing treats in moderation into my diet. There are so many temptations all the time at work, at the grocery store, at parties, and at restaurants that if I gave into every single one, there is no way I could maintain or lose the weight to get back to my goal. So I normally just tell myself that I can’t have any, and if I don’t start, I’m usually successful in completely refraining.

The trouble is, when I DO start, it really is trouble. I think because I don’t allow myself to have treats very often, it feels like I’m being bad and I almost get into this ‘last supper’ mentality, when really, there will be many, many more opportunities for French fries, cupcakes, and nachos in my lifetime.

So herein lies the question that perhaps is the secret to this moderation thing that everyone talks about. Do I start allowing myself to have more of the treats that are in front of me, in hopes that once my mind and body accept that I can have these things whenever I want, that I’ll be satisfied at just a bite or two? Or, do I keep abstaining from them most of the time, so that I am able to maintain or lose more weight, but still struggle mentally with having treats (in moderation) as a regular part of my diet?

What are your thoughts on this topic? How do you allow yourself to be moderate and not overdo it with treats? How do you move beyond the good/bad mentality with classifying foods?

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Beth

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