They have their day to day boundaries, their special occasion boundaries, and their never to be crossed boundariesWhen I first moved into maintenance/weight loss after coming off of OPTIFAST, I had boundaries about food and physical activity. I can only remember two of them:
- NEVER eat at McDonald's
- Eat chocolate only if it is Godiva quality or better, only in the presence of someone else, and only if I have already worked out that day.
The second boundary, though, is crossed quite often. I do still eat high quality chocolate, but not necessarily in front of anyone or after a workout.
It's time to re-establish my day-to-day, special occasion and never-to-be-crossed boundaries. I want them to be easy boundaries - easy to remember and easy enough to meet. In other words, setting a day-to-day boundary like "I will never exceed 1500 calories per day" only sets me up for failure. It's not realistic.
Day to Day Boundaries. I like the NO S theory here. No Seconds, No Sweets, No Snacks except Sometimes on days that start with S. That means, I get a little leeway on the weekends. I need that with my lifestyle. So for food - with maintenance or loss - my boundaries are:
M-F: No Seconds, No Sweets, No Snacks. Alcohol other than the 1/2 beer I split with D at dinner - only on Fridays.
S-S: No Seconds. No Snacks. Sweets and alcohol (I love my wine) will be permissible in moderation.
M-F: I will strive for 10000 steps per day, plus 3x per week formal exercise.
S-S: When I'm in town, I will workout 1-2x.
Special Occasion Boundaries. I think first, Special Occasion needs to be defined. D and I went to the mountains almost every month this past year. I treated each time like it was a special occasion: I ate whatever I wanted, drank however much I wanted, and had no exercise. Going to the mountains needs to be treated like a weekend boundary. It's no longer a special occasion. That leaves holidays, vacation, birthdays.
At this point, I think Special Occasion Boundaries mean including a sweet or a snack outside of my No-S rule, ONLY if I have planned for it. If I am in active weight loss mode, it means for that day, I can eat to maintenance.
Never to be crossed boundaries:
No McDonald's (or equivalent fast-"food" establishment)
No crap out of a vending machine*
Never eat unplanned food that doesn't taste spectacular. (In other words, if I opt to break the above boundaries, and the food I chose is less than stellar, I MUST not finish it. I must stop eating it. It has to REALLY be good for me to break a boundary.)
I may add some more to the Never to be crossed category. I think it's very important to not put TOO much in that category. Life becomes about restriction instead of joy and peace.
And I do want joy and peace in my weight management process.