After nearly a week of barely being able to eat up to my daily calorie burn, although we are still talking about an average difference of about 500 calories a day, I decided I needed to try to eat at least my calorie burn on this eating plan while still maintaining strict adherence to it. I was able to accomplish it, but believe it or not, it was quite a challenge.
The day started off with the usual shake and lunch was the usual large salad, this one again topping 1.5 pounds. It actually wasn’t until after lunch that I decided that I needed to try to hit at least a break even point for the day. This came about because I was thinking about how I usually plan my calories for the quarter. I basically stay in a moderate calorie deficit, between 200 to 500 calories, depending on the goals for the quarter and if there are any big holidays or vacations in that quarter. I then have my big eating days on weekends and these holidays and vacations. The problem is that although I’ve planned this out, I’m not really going to be eating the binge foods that I usually eat. It’s a lot harder to eat 1000 extra calories of whole fruits and vegetables. Even if I were to do it with other calorie dense foods like nuts, avocado or olive oil, it would still be tremendously hard. Try eating 1.25 cups of nuts, 5 avocados or 9 tablespoons of olive oil over the day. Funny isn’t it that it’s really just a slice of cheesecake to have the same effect.
Considering that, and considering that I had originally planned to have a 500 calorie deficit for the day, I decided the second half of the day would be to come up to level. After leaving a customer meeting mid-afternoon I decided to finish up the work day from home (ah the joy of being a software developer in the internet era) eating some good healthy food. I had been trying to figure out what to do with a nice big jar of chicken giambotta that my aunt sent me home with late last year. This is actually squarely within diet parameters. Think of a nice hearty vegetable stew made with potatoes, zucchini, tomatoes and red peppers with diced chicken breast added to it. I had at least four cups of that I could eat through, so I figured sure! I decided to up the ante a bit with that by adding some avocado to it. So basically from 4 pm until 11 pm I had a cup of giambotta with a quarter of an avocado once every few hours–and it was damn good!
Of course that didn’t count dinner itself. Dinner was a nice convenience food: Chipotle Burrito Bowl with avocado on top. You gotta love Chipotle’s selection of pretty healthy ingredients that are supposedly more sustainably raised. I’m not sure how much of that is greenwashing and how much of that is actual fact. What I do know is that their food tastes good and can be quite healthy with the right combinations. Mine, to stay consistent with the diet, was: white rice, black beans, chicken, hot sauce, tomatoes, lettuce and guacamole. That’s a lot of avocado for one day! I would typically add to that corn salsa and cheese, but that’s obviously not in the cards right now. I used to also get the brown rice over the white rice pretty consistently. Recently though I’ve been enjoying the white rice a lot more, and since conventional wisdom on the whole white versus brown rice is making sound like a bit of a wash I figure might as well “indulge” a little.
Just like yesterday evening I had temptation around me for most of the evening. The previous evening was all the beer I was making with my neighbor. This evening it was the beer everyone was drinking around me. I actually don’t mind it much, but I have to say I have a lot of sympathy for those that are suffering with alcohol issues. I love the smell and taste of beer and other alcohols, but I don’t feel the insatiable draw of them. I can’t imagine what it would have been like to have that other pull considering how much I was bumming on my perpetual tap of seltzer water.
The bottom line though is that I didn’t cave, and stayed true to the diet for yet another day. I also hit my calorie goal limit, being just barely over the line for the day. I’ll try to do that again tomorrow, again eating healthy whole foods not by finding some loophole to have me eating “compliant” ice cream or something like that.