What’s Your Diet Vice?
February 22, 2011 25 Comments
A few weeks ago I reconnected with my old pal Bobby through his very informative and inspirational website. Bobby and I met 14 years ago in Silicon Valley at a start-up tech company. He took care of the money (thankfully!) and I took care of the marketing communications. Working with young, eager, and energetic innovators, we managed to have a great time in the workplace; and, because we didn’t have children or many responsibilities outside of ourselves, we found plenty of time to stay fit and healthy.
That life may have very well belonged to someone else. Who was that person? Somehow, I worked all day, and then taught group exercise classes at a gym in the evening. I found time to run and compete in races, including a few marathons. I even worked on my strength in the weight room—not Mr. Bluford-style, of course, but I did my share. And, most importantly, I consistently stoked the fires burning at home with the hubby, managed to be a staunch supporter of Girls Night Out with my peeps, and was a smiling presence at all family holidays, births and birthdays. A skilled juggler!
Cut to the real world, real responsibilities: a home with too many toilets, a hardworking husband who appreciates and deserves a home-cooked meal, two tween kids with endless energy and interests and appetites, two rescue dogs (one undergoing chemo), a personal fitness training business and a part-time writing/copyediting business. How do we do it? How do we busy, working parents fit in the most important pillar of our existence—our wellness? That’s physical AND spiritual wellness, by the way—not simply jumping on a treadmill for 30 minutes every time a vapid new episode of The Bachelor is aired.
I certainly don’t claim to have all the answers, but my hope is that my contributions to Bobby’s site will move you to take a deep breath, honor yourself and your body, cut out that processed snack or soda, hug your loved ones and pets for no reason at all, truly connect with an old friend, and schedule YOURSELF into your weekly routine. If these ideas, meditations, tips and inspirations help you to accomplish just one of these goals and therefore improve or simplify your busy life, then we will collectively be moving toward a more peaceful universe.
Here’s my challenge for you this week. For the next 10 days beginning NOW, as you read these words, commit to refrain from all soda (regular and diet), and stay away from your “diet vice.” What? Your diet vice is your “go to” stress reliever, which in many cases becomes a daily habit. For some it is chocolate, for others it is potato chips, candy, fast food, bread and butter, ice cream (just one spoonful for me while I scoop a bowl for Junior!), cookies (the Girl Scouts WILL find you!), wine (a little more complicated, but alcohol is a diet vice too, if you find you pour a glass when your stressors activate).
You know what your diet vice is, so be honest with yourself. Now, think of a whole organic food alternative to your diet vice. I know this is not going to be as much fun as tortilla chips or Peppermint Patties, but you can think of something to have on hand—organic blueberries, mini Roma tomatoes, grapefruits, raw almonds (known to annihilate sugar cravings!) pure organic cranberry juice mixed with a little sparkling mineral water (it’s not wine, but it is full of antioxidants, fiber and phytochemical nutrients).
As for soda, do I really need to go there? Alright here it is: soda is toxic, lethal, poisonous, and venomous (too far?). You get the picture! However, I will tell you this for certain: you will age faster if you ingest soda regularly. The alarming amount of sugar/aspartame, harmful dehydrating additives like phosphoric acid (known calcium inhibitor) and sodium have linked soda to osteoporosis, obesity, tooth decay, and heart disease. If reading this you find yourself shocked by discovering the havoc that soda will wreak upon your body…well, you’re welcome. Now, stop drinking it!
Finally, make a list of 3 benefits you hope to enjoy once you have accomplished this goal of refraining from all soda and your diet vice for 10 days. Post this list of benefits in plain sight near your whole food alternatives. Some of you may find you are more energetic and less bloated. Or, you may find you have better mental clarity, you’ve lost a few pounds or you are sporting a more serene exterior. Whatever you hope to accomplish with this challenge, write it down, visualize it and make it happen.