Tuesday, August 21, 2012

my evolving bowl of oatmeal

This month is my two-year anniversary of my journey to better health, and I'm proof that small steps do add up to big change.

In two years I've lost 50 pounds, competed in a duathalon, stopped drinking coffee with sugar or artificial sweeteners, have packed the majority of my lunches to work, became a vegetarian, ran a 5K, am running every day, shop at least once a week at a local farmers market, and try to eat only fresh fruits and vegetables one day a week.

All that is not what I intended two years ago, and as a matter of fact, if I had known that much change would transpire (or that it would take TWO years!), I probably wouldn't have started. But for me, it was about one small step stacked on top of another and another until eventually I am where I am today. And two years from now, I'll be somewhere entirely different.

My bowl of oatmeal this morning is a perfect analogy.

I'd been eating those instant packs of oatmeal for breakfast for awhile, and then found out I didn't like the sweetener that was used in them. What I thought was a healthy way to start my day was actually pretty crappy given the amount of sugar I was consuming. So I switched to quick rolled oats, and my breakfast looked like this:

1/4 cup rolled oats, 1/2 cup of water, dash of cinnamon, a couple tablespoons of brown sugar and a swirl of half-and-half.

I cut out the half-and-half. And when I ran out of brown sugar, I didn't buy more. I bought honey instead.

My bowl of oatmeal is now this:

1/4 cup rolled oats, 3/4 cup of water, dash of cinnamon, two teaspoons of honey and fresh fruit (either a half a banana or fresh peaches).

Small steps = big change.

I should also tell you I'm not perfect.

I recently binged on Pringles and Wheat Thins, and ate a pint of ice-cream. And I ate way too much macaroni and cheese at a friend's house, precipitating a 36-hour fruit fast that I broke with salmon and summer vegetables. My body was SO GLAD for FRESHNESS after the crap I'd forced it to consume.

Oh yeah, and I'm also not a size 2, and I get frustrated (still!) by the numbers on the scale. I'm trying to make peace with it: maybe it's not about the numbers, maybe it's about overall health.

And maybe, in two years, I'll finally be reconciled with that notion. :)


The Logarithmic Spiral said...

I say the same thing whenever people balk at the fact that I'm vegan. It didn't happen overnight, people! Nor could it for this bacon-loving, lobster-munching, cheese-connoisseur carnivore. It absolutely is about baby steps. So proud of you!

Kimberly said...

This sound so exciting! John and I embarked on a dramatic food change two months ago and I have never felt better in my life! Or lost pounds so quickly. I am so excited for you and love watching your journey! (I would also suggest steel cut oats, which can be made in a crock pot overnight and are just. fab.)