Better With Sprinkles

The Colourful Side to Healthy Living.


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I Have Problems With You, Bob.

Good morning! I hope your Thursday is treating you well. Is anyone else finding that this week is going by particularly fast for them? I don’t really have any exciting plans this weekend, but I’m looking forward to a relaxing couple of days.

So for today’s post, I wanted to talk about Bob Harper’s the “skinny rules” that have been floating around Pinterest lately. I remember hearing a lot about the book when it first came out, and then Sara mentioned that it had been popping up again. Which of course, reinvigorated my anger and frustration on the topic.

So Mr. Bob Harper, I have problems with you right now.

I don’t believe in an all-encompassing set of food rules. Every body is individual, so the idea that one set of rules works for every body is ridiculous.

(source)

Your only saving grace right now is the adorableness of your dog.

 

In real life, food rules don’t work. I spent years following a prescribed set of diet rules for myself, and then wallowing in fear and anxiety if for whatever reason, I didn’t follow them. That was not an enjoyable way to live, so I have no intention of doing so again.

 

So…I’m going to show you exactly how I DON’T follow Bob’s ‘Skinny Rules’ Winking smile I won’t go through all 20 because then we would all be here forever, but these are (what I feel) are the worst offenders.

 

 

2. Don’t drink your calories.

Once in a while, you need sangria.

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Because sangria is delicious. And no one can drink water all the time.

4. Slash your intake of refined flours and grains.

Yes, whole grains are better for you than refined grains. But you know what’s good for your soul?

Refined flour-filled cupcakes.

if there is one thing I won’t turn down, it is a chocolatey cupcake such as this (note to self: go back to that shop and buy another cupcake).

6. Eat apples and berries every single day.

I remember when the book first came out and Harper was doing a lot of publicity, he was on some sort of celebrity show (I’m pretty sure it was Access Hollywood) and he explained that berries and apples should be eaten every day. Only these fruits. The host asked him about bananas, saying something along the lines of “bananas are healthy, right?” and Bob’s response was something along the lines of “I’d much rather you eat the apple!”

First off: berries in the middle of winter are expensive as hell and taste like water. No thanks.

Second: Sooo…no other fruit besides apples and berries. Not happening.

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Yesterday’s OIAJ breakfast included a sliced banana. Because bananas are awesome. Bob, you cannot take those away from me.

7. No carbs after lunch.

I HATE THIS RULE SO MUCH. Out of every diet rule out there, this one makes me rage the most. I like carbs. I don’t discriminate between breakfast carbs and dinner carbs. They are all delicious. And I refuse to go the rest of life not eating a proper sandwich or bowl of pasta for dinner.

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Last night’s dinner. French toast with berries, real maple syrup and a slice of bacon.

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Pure. Carb. Deliciousness.

9. Stop guessing about portion size and get it right.

Nope. I don’t even want to think about how many minutes I’ve spent carefully measuring out my food before consuming. In the end, is an extra 20 calories really going to matter because you didn’t measure out your portion of chicken exactly? Absolutely not!

10. No more added sweeteners, including artificial ones.

So..no more sugar, stevia, honey, maple syrup, xyla…not happening.

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And just wait until I find these again. The variety store that used to have them stopped carrying them. But, oh…I will hunt them down. And I will drink them, for no other reason than I think they’re wonderful.

11. Get rid of those white potatoes.

So…white potatoes are high in vitamin c, vitamin b, fibre, potassium, magnesium and iron. Research has indicated that they can be beneficial in lowering blood pressure, protecting cardiovascular health, and regulating stress. (source)

And Bob doesn’t want you to eat them.

So silly.

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So homemade baked potato wedges (with tons of ketchup) will remain a diet staple for me, thank you very much.

17. Eat your vegetables. Just do it.

What I’ve learned lately, is that I have two options when it comes to vegetables.

I can force myself to eat veggies, all the time when I don’t really want to and leave the meal feeling unsatisfied. Or, I can eat less vegetables, but eat them when I want them and truly enjoy the experience.

Option b sounds more pleasurable, doesn’t it?

18. Go to bed hungry.

No. No no no. My second most-hated rule.

Going to bed hungry is just so, so unpleasant to me. Because inevitably, I will wake up in the middle of the night with hunger pains, which is terrible. 98% of the time, I eat a dessert or snack an hour or two before bed. This has not caused me to gain weight or have anything terrible happen…and I get to sleep well.

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20. Plan one splurge meal a week.

This is one of those rules that I really don’t think applies to a lot of people. Myself, I need something sweet each day. Like real, can’t-be-satisfied-with-fruit need for sugar. If I tried to limit myself to one ‘splurge meal’ a week, I would go absolutely nuts and likely stuff myself to the point where I feel ill. So…yes. I’d much rather stick with my daily chocolate habit…and have a ‘splurge meal’ whenever I damn well want one.

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having four chocolate bunnies in the house definitely kept the sweet tooth happy for a while.

 

So really, what I’m getting at is this:

Don’t follow ‘rules’ when it comes to how you eat. Eat when you’re hungry, eat what you’re hungry for, and stop when you’re full (most of the time – sometimes, food is so damn delicious that you keep eating. And there’s nothing wrong with that).

Following someone else’s rules when it comes to eating is just going to lead to guilt and anxiety, and that’s not a fun way to live. Everyone’s bodies are so different, so there’s no guarantee that those rules are going to work for you anyways.

Just eat. Simple enough?

And Bob…I always liked Jillian better.

 

Have a good one!

<— What well known ‘food rule’ pisses you off the most? The no carb after dinner, or anything that deals with restricting carbs. Your body neeeeeds carbs!

<— Bob or Jillian? I did like Bob until he started putting books out. Not so much these days.


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WIAW: Eating in Real Life.

Good morning and happy Wednesday!

Which of course, means What I Ate Wednesday. We all enjoy our little bits of foodie voyeurism, don’t we? Winking smile

So for today’s post, I’m recapping my eats from this past Saturday. I was at a conference the vast majority of the day. I left the house at 8:45 in the morning, got home at 5:30 to rest for about 10 minutes before heading back out to the dinner/social. I ate breakfast at home, but my lunch, snacks and dinner were provided for.

Of course, a few years ago I would have driven myself nuts with anxiety over what my food options were going to be and peppering myself with questions. Were there going to be healthy options? Would I be able to resist the unhealthy ones? What snacks should I pack in case the food options didn’t meet my criteria?

But nowadays, I realized…I just don’t care. In fact, one of the organizers told me a few weeks ago what the food options were going to be, but I forgot. Completely forgot, because it didn’t matter to me. When it came time for meals, I looked over my options, picked what sounded good, and ate it. And that sort of freedom is pretty fabulous.

So, on with it!

Breakfast

My usual ACV mix and a quick breakfast before I left the house.

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One of my coconut-dipped baked banana donuts that I baked last week, and two fried eggs. Easy and delicious.

The conference was being held at the school, which was definitely convenient. This was actually the first one ever, put together by two school friends of mine. It wasn’t too big (about 20 presenters) but it was a success. They did a fabulous job putting it together!

My volunteer role for the day was running the Twitter account. Basically, being the official “Tweeter” (I need a fancier title though…Social Media Executive? Twitter Hostess? PR Manager? Something along those lines). Running an ‘official’ Twitter account is pretty fun…it makes me want to be more active on my blog twitter account.

And I was part of a group presentation, so I got some experience in that way. Note: I am such an awkward presenter.

I have absolutely no idea why my legs are crossed like that. My friend Zoey told me I looked like some sort of pretty flamingo. I suppose that’ a compliment, of sorts? Smile with tongue out

Another shot:

Apparently, I don’t know what to do with my arms either. So.awkward.

But moving on…

Lunch

Lunch was catered by a local deli, so that meant sandwiches, pasta salad, and egg salad.

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I went for two half sandwiches: roast beef and cheese (I think it was swiss?) on marble rye and salmon salad with cucumbers on what I believe is ciabatta. I also took a small scoop of pasta salad, because I’m always excited to see an oil-based pasta salad as opposed to a mayo based. Pretty tasty!

Exciting moment of the conference: over lunch, we got to see speeches from the Brantford Mayor, the local MPP (Member of Provincial Parliament) and MP (Member of Parliament at the Federal level).

Pretty cool stuff!

There were more presentations before breaking for afternoon snack.

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Apple and chocolate – gotta have balance, right? Winking smile And…I went back for a third chocolate. Of course.

There were more presentations before closing with the keynote speaker, one of the professors at Laurier. I have to say, I think what I love most about my program is the ridiculous amount of topics that you can cover, and they’re all so interesting to me. For example, my focus is on media representations (of crime and government, for the most part), but others in criminology focus on global issues, political issues, stigma, homelessness, mental illness, white collar crime and corruption, criminal law, cybercrime, sexism, Aboriginal issues…there are so many things to look at. Ahh, love.

Dinner

I headed home to rest my feet for a few minutes and pick up the boyfriend before heading to the Hawk and Bell (a pub in Brantford that just opened) for a buffet dinner and social. Dinner options were salad, garlic bread, perogies, vegetarian penne, chicken parmesan, and butter chicken with basmati rice. A good variety, clearly!

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(excuse the poor restaurant lighting)

I went for salad with balsamic, perogies, and butter chicken. Umm, that butter chicken might be some of the best I’ve ever had. From what I understand, the family that owns that restaurant is Indian and that was an old family recipe. It used shredded chicken instead of the usual chunks of chicken breast that I usually see in butter chicken, which was delicious.

Apparently, conferences made me hungry because I went back for seconds on the butter chicken.

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Amazing.

I was definitely tired after my day, so we didn’t stay at the social to long. We headed home, where I promptly collapsed on the couch and turned on a movie Smile

11:00 pm munchies:

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Graham cracker with peanut butter. Did the trick.

So the conference and eats there made me realize how normal my relationship with food feels. Generally, people don’t worry about what food is going to be served when they have a lunch or a conference (of course, different story for allergies or necessary dietary restrictions, but you get my point). They show up, they eat what’s there, and they move on. No concern about whether or not the options were healthy enough or met any sort of criteria…they just eat it. I love feeling that sense of normalcy around what I eat!

And still plugging away at papers today, but I’m almost done my final coursework paper. Light at the end of the tunnel!

Enjoy your day!

<— If you did/are doing post secondary education, what’s your degree in?

<— What was your favourite class in school? Interestingly enough, I think my favourite course that I ever took was the Greek Mythology course I took in my fourth year of undergrad. It was such an interesting course.

<— Do you get anxious if you’re at an event and don’t know what the food options are going to be?


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Breaking Down High Expectations.

Hello and happy Tuesday! How’s yours going so far? I’m slowly working my way through a law paper…and being incredible jealous of people who are done classes/schoolwork.

On the bright side, they’re calling for 15 degrees and sunny today, so I’m thinking I may take my laptop down to the Coffee Culture down the street and do some work on their patio today. Might be nice! 

So today I wanted to talk about perfectionism and expectations. I know I’ve talked about this on the blog before, but my expectations of myself are high. Really high.

I spend a lot of time thinking about what I ‘should’ do. Whether it’s in regards to my eating habits, my workouts, schoolwork, small decisions, big decisions…I feel like I have a tendency to follow a set of rules for myself. Expectations I have to reach, rules I have to follow…I’ve been aware of and trying to break these patterns for years. I’ve made a lot of progress, but I still haven’t quite escaped from my own high standards.

For example, I realized the other day that I’m going to get a 79% in one of my classes. When I saw that, I was disappointed because I was aiming to get straight A’s this year. Which got me thinking…why did I decide I needed to get straight A’s? I’ve made the decision that I won’t be moving on after I get my MA (I have no desire to work towards a PhD) so really, as long as I pass everything, I’m fine. Who decided that I needed straight A’s? Where is this pressure coming from?

This month I’ve been taking a laissez faire, unstructured approach towards my workouts, deciding the day of what I want to do instead of following a schedule or routine. Last Friday, I was struggling with this a lot. I had no desire to work out. None. I had a busy day planned, so I didn’t really have a lot of time for it anyways. But I still had a nagging thought at the back of my mind that I should go to the gym. Because I was physically able to (I wasn’t feeling sore at all), I should work out. I knew I wouldn’t be doing myself any favours if I went, so I didn’t. But I was frustrated with myself for feeling that sense of “I should.”

Last week, veggies were not appealing to me. It was sunny and warm out (some days, anyways) which is normally when I start to want salads and fresh vegetables all the time. But…nothing. Not appealing. But because I thought I should, I made myself a couple of big salads for a few lunches. And then would end up eating all the ‘good stuff’ and throwing the leaves in the garbage. Because I expected that I would want salads, I tried to force it. Which, of course, failed (And of course, as soon as I stopped trying to force myself to eat more veggies I started craving them. I’ve had monster salads for lunch the last two days and adored them).

The perfectionist extends to social situations as well – I’m always worrying about saying the wrong thing, or coming off as unlikeable. I’m pretty sure that’s why I have a tendency towards awkwardness in a lot of social situations. I just don’t know how to act natural, because in my head I’m thinking about what I just said and how it was portrayed. That probably explains why I’m such a fan of texting…I can think about my response, write it out, think about it some more, change it if necessary. Not so much in real life situations.

I don’t really have the answers for how I can fix this…I’ve been working on it for years, first through therapy and it continues to be my own work in progress. But being aware of and expressing a desire to change is where it begins, right? I think I just needed to write this out as a reminder to myself to push past that desire for perfectionism and high expectations. Whenever I put pressure on myself to do something, to reach a certain standard, There’s a few questions I need to ask.

Why do I need to do this/reach this standard?

Who says that has to be the goal?

I’m not very good at being content. Whatever I do, I tend to think of how I could have done it better, gotten a better grade, lifted more weight, made a ‘healthier’ choice…I could go on. But, I’m going to keep working on myself and breaking down that habit. It’s ok to strive for excellence and for my personal best, but complete perfection is not part of that picture. Because I would like to think I’m pretty awesome, even with some flawed aspects Winking smile

Have a good one!

<— Do you have perfectionist tendencies?

<— Texting or calling someone? I kind of hate talking to people on the phone. Thank god for texting.

<— Do you worry about being awkward in social situations? I’m actually pretty terrible. 

image source: 1, 2, 3, 4