I recently returned from a short trip abroad. I went to the Land of Thin People – have you heard of it? While there I saw and learned some amazing things which I want to share with you. Apparently Thin People wait several hours (three is the most common number) between eating. I was shocked by this custom as my custom is to eat continuously all day long, especially if I’m at work. I also discovered that Thin People tend not to eat dinner in front of the TV. Again, this was rather startling as I thought eating while you watch Downton Abbey or The Voice was a requirement. Furthermore, the natives of this foreign land apparently write down everything they eat, spend time on Sunday preparing food for the week ahead, carry healthy snacks in their bags, and always combine carbs (good ones of course) with protein. Their national motto is “Plan & Be Prepared.” Did I mention that I returned from my travels thoroughly exhausted?
The truth is I am in awe of the inhabitants of the Land of Thin People and I sincerely hope to return someday for a much longer visit. But timing is everything and right now is not the right time as I need to focus on figuring out what I want to do with my life! It was hard to adjust my expectations because I thought, prior to my recent excursion, that I was ready this time to change my eating habits for good. But, I’m not giving up – I’m just changing my timetable. I know I do best when I make changes incrementally. For example, when I started working out I used the treadmill for walking with no intention of becoming a runner. But after many weeks of walking I was ready to amp things up so I said to myself, “run for one minute and see how it feels.” So I did and it was OK. Gradually I increased the amount that I ran so that now I run four out of every five minutes. No one is more surprised than me at this turn of events. (Bonus – my brother, who passed away many years ago, loved to run so sometimes when I run I think of him and am glad for this association.)
So for now I am going to work on spacing out my meals and snacks. Once that becomes easier, I’ll move on to the next challenge. This pacing feels right. It fits in with the philosophy of #WYCWYC – “What You Can When You Can,” a philosophy that doesn’t get you off the hook in terms of working hard to live more healthfully, it just gives you permission to be human. Check out the #WYCWYC website.