Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Day 540 Evolving Food Choices, Chocolate, and The Mirror Tonight

Day 540

Evolving Food Choices, Chocolate, and The Mirror Tonight

I eat a banana everyday, sometimes I eat two. Bananas are often the first thing I put in my grocery basket. If you run into me at the store, chances are good you'll find bananas, eggs, mushrooms, mozzarella, tomato sauce, chicken breast, and if I'm inside one store in particular, then you'll find steel cut oats. I'm such a creature of habit! These items have become staples for me and further, have become a sign that my choices have evolved. I grabbed a couple of pears at the store recently too. I love pears! I have no idea why I haven't had them on a more regular basis. I always enjoyed them from a can in the past. Today I took a knife to work and cut up a fresh pear during my show. Nothing like a fresh pear, especially if it's a little soft. Last night I found myself gazing lovingly at the steaks. I hardly ever eat red meat anymore. But don't think I'm doing this stuff on purpose...I'm just developing different habits in a very gradual, natural way. And with warmer weather around the corner, I'll be firing up some red meat real soon on that grill of mine, you just hide and watch!

Those M&M's I enjoyed last night, well---they must have sparked a bigger inner desire for chocolate than I thought. Today I found myself wanting more. It was mid-day at work and it just hit me: I need chocolate! I didn't have any. But wait! Right above a co-workers desk, there's a basket of tiny Dove dark chocolate hearts. This co-worker is very generous and always says “help yourself,” and I hardly ever do. The first time she offered me one---I asked to see the bag they came out of first. 42 calories each. OK---I have to know how good these really are, you know? Today---I grabbed one. Then twenty minutes later I grabbed another. Then thirty minutes later I walked back there to her desk, looked at them, started to grab another 42 calorie shot of chocolate---and then I stopped myself. 84 calories was enough to invest in chocolate today. But man...sometimes that craving is so strong, it's hard to walk away. Then of course my brain starts trying to rationalize the choice. Sean, go ahead guy---do it, besides—-it's dark chocolate and full of antioxidants! See, it's good for you, you need this chocolate for health reasons! Hogwash—truth is, it didn't matter what kind of chocolate it was---I would have still been drawn to it today. I think about my old habits and how much better it is to grab a couple of 42 calorie pieces of chocolate instead of a king size Snickers bar. Yeah---Haven't had a king size Snickers Bar in a very long time. Well...think about it, it's just a horrible calorie value...really. I doubt I'll ever invest that many calories in a candy bar ever again. But a normal size Snickers? Oh---probably at some point. I've had two or three in the last 540 days.

While doing the weight machines today, I noticed my abs like never before. No---I didn't see them, but I will someday. I could feel them. They're strong and built. Who knew? They've been covered for so long...built by their role in helping me carry around over 500 pounds for the majority of my adult life. This machine that isolates the abs---Oh my...I love it! It's going to be a while before these abs are ready for a coming out party, and that's ok. It's just nice to know they're in there. I knew that already really...but this machine, wow--what a wonderful reminder!

I had a good nap this evening and then enjoyed a great dinner. I prepared a grilled chicken breast atop a bed of whole wheat spaghetti---and then topped with tomato sauce and mozzarella. It was a great meal and at 530 calories, it was a dinner I could be proud of. That's important really. It really wasn't important to me in the beginning, and some days it still isn't--But being proud of my choices makes me feel great. And when it comes to food, I feel great the majority of the time.

Before bed tonight, I stood in front of my bathroom mirror and just stared at myself. This is me isn't it? I feel like that kid in the youtube video after a dentist visit... Is this real life? And I know it is---it's wonderful really. Like a dream come true. No wonder I find it hard to push myself sometimes. This transformation has reached a point of comfort and ease---and then dealing with these fascinating glares into the mirror---seeing a version of myself I've never known. It's very tricky psychologically. I need to seriously get over this little comfort zone and get to where I really want to be. This isn't it. As good as I feel, this isn't where it's stopping. I deserve to reach my fitness goals. But you understand right? When 263 pounds at 6 foot 3 is pretty decent, and it's such a dramatic difference from 505---it's so easy to be satisfied. I fight that satisfaction every day. I've often written about "the line of least resistance," and how it kept me dangerously close to an early death for years. Now, that line keeps me far away from my fitness goals. Of course, all I have to do is get undressed to be reminded why I must push myself harder. Thank goodness for clothing.

Thank you for reading! Goodnight and...

Good Choices,


  1. You wrote: I need to seriously get over this little comfort zone and get to where I really want to be. This isn't it. As good as I feel, this isn't where it's stopping.
    And that is where I am, incredibly. I have so much weight still to lose, I am still obese, yet I look so different from what I did before I have to remind myself that I'm still in the middle of my journey!
    I have always incorporated chocolate into my day, from the beginning, because if I didn't it would have become a 'bad' food and I didn't want to create a huge mindless desire in my heart for it. Normalizing it worked for me. But I like being able to say 'no', to purposefully not walk down the Easter candy aisle at the store, to knowledgeably choose how when where and what type of chocolate I'm going to eat. That is the difference between now and then.
    Hugs Sean!

  2. Excellent decision about listening to your best self re: chocolate portions!! Myself, I like the 90% stuff. Isn't it funny how you enjoy food MORE when you choose to eat LESS? Just one more of the nice ironies in this journey. :-)

    Thanks for sharing your inner self talk. A very good reminder of the inner aspects of this awesome transformation.

  3. How great to realize that your choices are getting better... and that you have control over what you choose to do, even if it includes chocolate. Like you I eat a lot of the same things daily for breakfast and lunch. Over and over again. So when I get a craving for something specific I do try to have a little so that I don't go bonkers trying to satisfy it. Keep on keeping on Sean, that's all you can do.

  4. Yup...sugar+chocolate calls out for more sugar+chocolate. I've had to harness that one and only indulge in that food group with certain combinations which won't kick in the urge for more. And that's a step forwards, because I had to ban this stuff when I was first starting out.

  5. Good job, Sean. That cliche about "everything in moderation" is tough to do when chocolate is nearby.

  6. I bought 2 bags of Hershey's dark chocolate almond nuggets on sale buy one get one free a couple of weeks ago. They're like 45 cals each, and I have one a day. They're kept up in a cabinet behind a closed door so I can't see them out in a candy dish or something. But I like being able to have a little chocolate every day, and it's kind of fun to say one is enough...instead of eating 10 of them. I like wielding that kind of power over the chocolate! lol :)

  7. Thanks for the comment on my blog, you rock :) M&Ms can lead to scary results, good for you for being able to "just say no" to too much chocolate!

    You made me laugh out loud with "Thank goodness for clothing." Thank goodness, indeed!

  8. I was reading this magazine about eating anything you want but in portions. I thought of you. Good job on controlling the chocolate.

  9. Good job on controlling the chocolate. Although that is one food I can do with out, there are many other very tempting. I have often found myself going to the kitchen just looking through the cupboards and fridge. Then I just snap out of it and think...I'm NOT hungry get out of here.

    Keep up the good work!! You are an inspiration for many.

  10. I had two bites of my daughters mint choc chip ice cream last night and then debated begging her for more ( my mom announced coming into my home for dinner that she bought each girl a half gallon of ice cream gee where di all this come from?) anyway I was good with two bites I decided and sat and let the choc chips melt in my mouth awhile. It had to be an intentional choice.

  11. I used to binge-eat chocolate. It was one of my trigger foods, so I gave it up cold turkey (with the help of hypnosis aversion therapy) in 1996. Haven't had a piece since, and I don't miss it. Some people can have a "little" chocolate... I wasn't one of those people.

  12. Sean,

    I love to read about your daily victories and how things are going with your life.

    Thanks so much for taking the time to make us all feel like we are part of it!

    I constantly have "sean sayings" in my head. Love it!

    Have a great day!

    Diet Buddy Girl

  13. Ha ha! I have "Sean sayings" too. Maybe a book is in order???


  14. Hey, I know exactly what you mean.
    I was at the gym yesterday and I happened to glimpse myself in the full length mirror..and I stopped and stared. Because it didn't look 'like me'.
    I stare sometimes just trying to take it in.
    As if through pictures or just constantly looking, I could somehow allow the reality to sink below the surface.
    We'll get there.

  15. you did so well sean..im proud of you..you will to where you want to be..we all know that..dont we guys..lol i have been having a very bad migraine today or i would have looked at it sooner..loveyou kelli

  16. Felt every word of this one, Sean. Every word. Love ya.


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