My focus isn't on dieting so much right now. It's on money. Credit card bill came and I didn't have any money in checking to pay it. I had some illness earlier this summer and some unfortunate scheduling matters prevented me from getting much/any work for a few weeks. I also got health insurance and a new laptop so far this year. Somewhere in the mix, my financial situation has depleted, so I've gone on a financial diet. I pay my bills and allow myself $100 per week for groceries and other discretionary spending. I started this thing by calling a halt to restaurants (I was eating nearly every meal at a restaurant), coffee shops (I was passing time by going to coffee shops and reading, and I'd buy a beverage while there), movies and DVD rentals, the odd 16-oz soda (I can drink water for free) and even restricting my driving so that I don't use up gas unnecessarily. I've also been taking all the work that comes to me, which basically means I go and spend hot horrible humid days from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. doing these rock and roll shows and its very physically taxing but the good thing is that they cater! Still, even as I try to hope that the money I'm making and not spending will make a difference the next time I have bills to pay, I face a car that needs repair (hopefully only $50), a laptop that needs repair (about $250) and everything is breaking and falling apart (need new frying pan, and new DVD/VCR player) and there's a beach trip coming up that I've promised to go to, before I knew just how bad things were going to be for me financially.
Anyway, the way this relates to my current relationship with food. A couple years ago I transitioned from eating out at restaurants and picking up candy and drinks from convenience stores and drinking out at bars, to eating on a meal plan which often called for me to buy more perishable foods than I was scheduled to eat, and pricey ingredients to fit whatever the meal plan called for. At the start I remember thinking I was willing to pay whatever they asked me to and I would submit to their plan. My roommate said "I don't know how you afford it" and I said "It's not ideal" but the truth is it didn't kill me. Berries are expensive but they were so worth it to me. I didn't go into the poorhouse. Although looking at the graph of my net worth over time, I've been gradually getting poorer all along, getting a boost in Jan 2010 from work or inheritance or something. Why did I not really notice it before now?
So now I'm living like most people already have at least once or twice in their lives, if not habitually. And I'm learning what to eat this way. The food may not be much different but the methodology is. Try to make sure I have some proteins and good carbs and fruits and vegetables to choose from. Then you can make a meal that mixes these things - eggs and grits with toast and fruit - fish and rice stew with celery and carrots. I have some cottage cheese in the fridge that needs to be eaten, what can I mix it with? Well I have some pineapples and some sliced almonds, that could be good. I've reconnected with the peanut butter and jelly sandwich and I haven't even checked to see how many calories it is, I just eat it sometimes. That goes for cereal too. Once a week I go to the grocery store and get myself something sweet (brownies or something) and a good special protein like chicken or steak.
I know this sounds funny to those of you who have always eaten this way. For me it sort of takes me back to my high school days, eating after school like I did. Bowl of cereal, can of soup, tomato sandwich... but with more protein, probably.
I have been quite inactive this summer except at work, which can be very active, or at least physically taxing. After three days of that mess, Thursday I soaked in the tub and applied lotion to my whole body (unusual in summer for me) and Friday I took my sore and limber body and did a very very gentle (wimpy) yoga session that limbered me up enough to do the warm-up section of my normal yoga DVD this morning. Miss yoga SO MUCH! And if I'm not trying to get all cardiovascular, yoga is SO GREAT!