Choosing Salad Over M&Ms

For the past two days, I’ve felt like this:

A little lazy and a lot unmotivated.

After working out five days in a row, I decided to take a much needed two days off. I haven’t been motivated to do much of anything except eat.  For some reason, taking days off sometimes makes me want to eat things I wouldn’t usually eat. Mostly I’ve been craving chocolate and peanut butter. Specifically in the form of Peanut Butter M&Ms. There’s a CVS around the corner from my office, so it takes very little effort to skip down there and pick up a large bag of candy. In the olden days, I wouldn’t have thought twice about buy the M&Ms. I would bought them and eaten the entire bag over the course of the afternoon, and then felt horrible about myself for hours.

So today when my chocolate peanut butter craving surfaced, I analyzed it instead of giving into it. As I’m sure you know, cravings can be caused by factors unrelated to the food itself. Someone craving carbs may really need a hug, or maybe they just need to incorporate more fat into their diet.  I’m attributing my cravings to hormones, stress at work, and the fact that I’ve fallen out of my usual routine. I always eat better on days when I’m working out!

On my lunch break, I fought my urge to eat M&Ms all the way to Whole Foods (a two mile walk round trip!). I wasn’t really in the mood to eat anything in particular, but I knew that my body needed something other than junk. I was hoping that by the time I got there, I would be inspired by the salad bar…

…and I was! Without a plan, or a taste for anything specific, I meandered around the salad bar and managed to make a pretty good salad. Spinach, red lettuce, beets, carrots, cabbage, sweet potato and cucumber topped with a scoop of tuna salad and an egg for protein.

To make sure that I stayed on track after lunch I picked up an apple and some maple almond butter. I’m really liking the honeycrisp apples right now! They’re a little bit sweet and a little bit tart and not mealy at all. I’d say that maple almond butter is a pretty good alternative to peanut butter M&Ms!

I’m still not totally feeling the vegetables. Hopefully that will change after my workout this afternoon. Exerting myself in a workout situation usually inspires me to make healthy food choices. I’m incredibly glad I made the walk to Whole Foods this afternoon instead of to CVS: I’d much rather be proud of myself for choosing healthy food than feel derailed by eating an entire bag of M&Ms.

For a great post about feelings associated with overeating, check out Katie’s post on Health For the Whole Self. Reading her post this morning partially inspired me to write about what I’m feeling right now…

Have you ever had days when you feel like you can’t stay on track? How do you cope?


7 Responses to Choosing Salad Over M&Ms

  1. Katie @ Health for the Whole Self September 22, 2010 at 3:42 PM #

    I’m so glad you found my post helpful! It sounds to me like you hit the nail on the head in terms of analyzing your cravings and finding healthier ways to give yourself what you really needed. 🙂

  2. Tina September 22, 2010 at 5:04 PM #

    That’s so fabulous you didn’t just give in to old habits. I know how hard it is to break from doing things like that. Way to go!

    • AllieNic September 23, 2010 at 10:41 AM #

      Thanks Tina!

      I just checked out your blog…awesome!

  3. April September 22, 2010 at 7:22 PM #

    I just discovered the Whole Foods salad bar. I love that thing!

    Great decision…it’ll make living with yourself easier.

    Thanks for the comment, now i’m off to check the recipes!

  4. Joslyn @ missfitbliss September 23, 2010 at 10:31 AM #

    This story is so true for me too. Whenever I take big breaks from working out, I get a ravenous appetite! I need to follow your example more often;)

  5. Nadine September 25, 2010 at 1:09 PM #

    Hi! Yes, I give in to my cravings lately. Could be the Fall and the impending dark days of Winter in Vermont. I really love your articles. They give me “food for thought.” Pasta cravings? Maybe I DO need a hug!


  1. To Breathe Convulsively or Laboriously « Frisky Lemon - September 24, 2010

    […] has weeks where they fall out of their routine. This week was mine. I was in a food slump the first half of the week and a workout slump the second half. I’m attributing my “not […]

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