Thursday, February 18, 2010

See Ya Suga!

It would appear that the season of Lent is already upon us. In the past I haven't really taken part in this. I think its annoying when people give up food that is bad for you and use Lent as an attempt to lose weight. I think you miss the point when you turn it into a 40 day diet. This year, however, I have decided to partake in this time of discipline and reflection. The reason I have decided to participate this year is because I really feel like I need some discipline in my life. I have been lazy and really focused on myself recently. And I really believe that being disciplined in one area of your life helps you to be more disciplined in general.

Side note: When I did Summer Staff (volunteered at a Young Life camp for a month) a few years ago our summer staff boss made us make our beds every morning based on the idea that being disciplined in one area of your life causes you to be disciplined in other areas. And it was so true. Sure it was annoying to take a few minutes every morning (and it was very early in the morning since my job was a baker) to make your bed, but it kind of got me in the habit of slowing down a little and doing things that I may not necessarily feel like doing. Sometimes I wish that I could still make my bed every morning, but unfortunately I am up and out the door before Derek even thinks about getting out of bed, so that makes it a little difficult.

Anyways, I definitely need some discipline in my life right now, so at the risk of sounding like a hypocrite, I am going to give up eating sweets for 40 days. I know what you're thinking - why in the world would you choose that when you began this post complaining about people who use Lent as a means to dieting. Well, I have several reasons and I think they are decent so please hold your judgement and allow me to explain.

1. I am not giving up sweets in order to lose weight. I am training for my first half marathon. During the 40 days of lent I will be running more than I have ran since my cross country days in high school when I could eat whatever the heck I wanted and I still had a 6-pack. If there was ever a time in my life where I could eat sweets and not feel bad about it and not have to worry about gaining weight, now would be that time.

2. A couple people whose blogs I read on a consistent basis have given up sugar (not like all sugar, but mostly sweets like what I am talking about) and have talked about how great they feel. After giving it up they realized just how addicted they were. And honestly, I am pretty sure I am addicted. Like, I eat a cookie or something sweet after every meal. And to be completely honest with you, I am not sure that I can stop.

3. This could possibly be one of the most difficult things I ever do. I seriously LOVE sweet things. Cookies, candy, cupcakes, ice cream, I love it all. And I am honestly not sure how my body is going to react. But, when I think about how often I eat sweet things, I realize that not eating these things is going to require constant attention and focus, which will hopefully remind me that while I need to be constantly paying attention to what I put into my body physically, I also need to be paying constant attention to what I put into my body mentally and spiritually. 

4. I am also hoping that by practicing self-control in this area of my life, I will be more self-controlled in other areas of life and realize that there are probably a lot of other things that I could do without that would probably make my life better and more simple.

Here is a list of things that I am going to have to do without over lent:
  • Anthony Thomas Mint Meltaways - my parents send me a box of these each year at Valentine's Day and honeslty its my favorite thing about the holiday. Because Valentine's Day was only a few days ago I have only eaten half the box. This means the other half must go in the freezer and not come out until after Easter.
  • Mary's Mountain Cookies - As I mentioned in my last post I am heading out to Colorado in a few days - Friday to be exact. And my favorite thing about Breckenridge, next to the skiing of course, is Mary's Mountain Cookies. They have these chocolate chip cookie sandwhiches with buttercream frosting that make my heart flutter. I will have to wait at least another year to experience this kind of joy.
  • Derek's birthday cookie cake - Derek's birthday is over Lent and every year his mom makes him a cookie cake which is something I always look forward to. This year, I'll have to watch everyone else eat it.
  • Gigi's cupcakes - Have you been to Gigi's yet? They have amazing cupcakes. And while Gigi's has just recently entered my life, it is going to be a long 40 days until our paths cross again.
  • A cookie or 2 after every meal.
  • Stealing Derek's reese's peanut butter hearts that I got him for Valentine's day.
Man, this is a long post. I feel the need for a little clarification of what I am NOT giving up before I end it though:
  • Maple and brown sugar flavored oatmeal - I eat this for breakfast every morning and I get the kind with 50% less sugar and I feel like it is probably healthier than many other things I could eat for breakfast. I will however abstain from brown sugar and cinnamon pop tarts. There, are you happy?
  • Starbucks - In the winter this is where I go to hang out with friends and catch up, and it would just be awkward if I didn't order anything. I will limit myself to carmel apple spices because there is no chocolate in them. (FYI - I can't drink caffeine after lunch or I won't sleep at night so that limits my starbucks choices, so I think between hot chocolate and carmel apple spice, a carmel apple spice is really the lesser of 2 evils.)
  • Fruit and fruit juices
  • Gum - I chew sugar free anyways (thanks to the semester when I chewed sugar-full and ended up with 12 cavities by Christmas) but I guess because its sweet it may be cheating - but all you do is chew it and spit it out, its not like you eat it, so I'm gonna keep chewing.
Ok I think that should cover it (and way overcomplicate it). Here's to hoping this is not a giant fail. I may have to take up smoking.

No comments: