We interrupt this broadcast for a test of the emotional eating system….

Today’s entry was supposed to be called “what not to (Foot)wear.” (A response to the very classy woman I saw on MAX this morning, wearing a men’s cut suit that suited (hee) her perfectly, great hair, great presentation – classically elegant without being feminine – and then, I saw her feet. Tevas. Seriously. I am really, really hoping that she had a great pair of shoes in her bag, and just didn’t want to get them dirty – however, I don’t believe that she had a great pair of heels in her bag, because the pants would have been high-water pants if she had a heel, and who carries their flats in a bag? Who?)

It was also going to have an exciting sub-plot cleverly titled “Why Amy shouldn’t pick out her own clothes in the morning, and should always do wardrobe planning the night before.”

However, those plans have flown out the window.

Instead, we are going to talk about emotional eating (and drinking).

This morning was kinda crappy. Everything is okay now – and yay! for okay. However, there was a touchy 45 minutes this morning when I was not sure that everything was going to be okay.

It’s been kind of a crap week.

1) Still can’t run

2) Have 30,000 mosquito bites which made for a restless sleep Sunday night

3) Had my bag & wallet stolen on Monday at the market (fortunately, my special shopping wallet had nothing in it but coupons, for some reason I’d put my ID & debit card in my pants pocket; and the intrepid thief actually dumped my re-usable Enviro-Sax [which were worth WAAAY more than the coupons & wallet put together] so I really didn’t lose anything except about 30 minutes of time at the market, and my sense of personal safety)

4) Work is busy this week. I am working on a very challenging project – trying to make something that is innovative AND brand new AND confusing easily explainable via a spreadsheet. This is challenging because a) there is no precedent and b) I’m not sure I fully understand what I’m supposed to be explaining

5) The CRISIS of this morning, which was a complete screw-up on my part, but was chalked up to a) Newbie mistake; b) Gaps in training; c) over-confidence in my ability to be perfect – apparently I’m learning so fast that people keep forgetting that I’m new and they have a false confidence in my ability to do things I’ve never done before. Doesn’t matter – I screwed up, but fortunately, it was able to be rectified

So – lots of stressors.

At 9:30 this morning, I said to a colleague, “I think I need a drink.”

And at 1 PM, when I went to the cafeteria for lunch (completely foregoing my extremely healthy eggplant, tomato & chicken leftovers in the fridge), I went for the fish tacos with beans & guacamole. And a lemon bar. And a Diet Coke.

I was about half way through my food before I realized what I was doing. I was shoveling in this food almost faster than I could taste it, because I was “stressed” and deserved a break.

I like to believe that I’ve pretty much conquered eating out of boredom, and rewarding myself with food for happy things, but I sure haven’t gotten out of the habit of looking for comfort food when stressed out.

My comfort foods are things with beans, and rice and cheese and tortillas (in other words, Mexican food). I like the carbs & fat. I used to smoke when stressed (and can I tell you how much a want a cig now – which, even if I had one, I work in an area where there is NO SMOKING ANYWHERE, so that’s not really an option), so maybe this is a little better. (Although I think having an emergency stress smoke stash isn’t so bad. If you could really, really limit it to times of extreme stress. That might work out about as well as my “I will only smoke when I drink” quitting methodology, which found me drinking WAAAY more than before in an effort to justify the number of ciggies I was smoking.)

I don’t crave desserts often, but I have been lately – I think it’s because I’m not running. When I run, I don’t crave sweets….weird, I think. (And remind me to tell you the story of how far I went for a piece of chocolate last night. I don’t even like chocolate.)

As soon as I realized what I was doing, I slowed down, put down my fork, and thought about what I was doing. The beans weren’t very good, so I didn’t finish them. The fish was greasy, so I pulled the fried part off and dipped the fishy innards in the guac. I did eat the tortillas. And I definitely ate the lemon bar – but I ate slowly & savored it.

And now, I’m still a bit too full – but at least I’m not stuffed.

It’s hard to rewire one’s responses.

(In good news, I did 30 minutes on the elliptical last night, and some upper arms strength training. I’m trying to remind myself every day that 30 minutes of exercise most days is better than nothing, and that I don’t need to run 4 days a week to be fit.)


So – question for the masses…..how do you handle emotional eating? What are your triggers? What are your comfort foods? What do you INSTEAD of eating in the middle of the day when you can’t take off for a quick run, or a martini?

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