In the final third of Junk Free June it got tough and it got tricky.
I now regularly dream of eating things on my forbidden list, which results in me waking confused and feeling guilty for something I haven’t even done. As mentioned previously food guilt is a thing I ever feel so I am not enjoying this element of the challenge.
My cravings are through the roof, instead of getting the ongoing satisfaction of things like ice cream and chocolate in random doses (whenever I felt like it, which isn’t often) I get no satisfaction. My body is now screaming I WANT DESERT, I WANT A DONUT, I WANT ICE CREAM, like a two year old child in a supermarket.
I’ve had a lot of work things on this week and so there’s been a lot of catered food so I’ve had no control over what options I have to eat. I made it work though so I’m proud of that fact. Even though at one point I was staring at the chocolate brownie so hard I lost my point mid-sentence.
Another tricky aspect is what exactly “counts”, as mentioned there are guidelines but it’s up to you (I didn’t exclude alcohol because I NEED wine). I listed a lot of baked goods on my list but, full disclosure here, I ate apple pie. My mother made it for my visit home and because she made it because she knows how much I ADORE it (actually I had 2 slices, I would of had 3 but my nephew beat me to it). I enjoyed it with no hint of guilt and I absolutely do not consider it “cheating”.
However other people might if you get all technical with it, I would say yes McDonald’s apple pie is as it’s ingredients are chemicals, but my mother’s apple pie is made with simple ingredients and love (true fact).
And this is one of the main aspects of Junk Free June, don’t eat processed, manufactured food, take the time to learn what goes in your food, enjoy food with your family and friends, nourish your body, don’t just refuel. What you put into your mouth does affect you now and in later life, and not just weight gain, but also energy levels, your ability to focus and could make to vulnerable to certain illnesses or diseases.
So what are my main takeaways (get it?!) from this experience?
- Banning food groups completely is stupid to do long term (Obviously this excludes vegans, vegetarians or anyone with food allergies). Yes it’s great for a challenge but if your doing it for diet reasons then reconsider. Humans aren’t perfect, and as such we will fail if we decide to label food good or bad, the result is an unhealthy relationship with food and serious guilt baggage when you inevitably fail. Eat a slice of cake once and awhile and it might stop you face diving into an entire cake.
- It was easier than I thought. In the beginning I had a feeling the inconvenience would see me wrong, as in I’d find it hard to find food on the go. This wasn’t actually an issue!
- I became slightly less lazy. All of a sudden I had to meal prep for work as going to McDonalds was out of the question! I started trying new recipes out in an attempt to try new ways of nourishing myself. Also it helped me kick start my gym and running program which I’ve stuck to for once.
I want to keep up this trend of shunning takeaways, I have a weakness for McDonalds, KFC etc and I felt like it was becoming way too regular to stop in there. It was hitting my wallet too, all of a sudden it all adds up.
Speaking of money, I raised $165 which is awesome! My goal was $100 but my lovely family and friends (you know who you are you wonderful people) helped me push it past that. Thank you so much to you all, and as mentioned previously it all goes to the NZ Cancer Society.
In saying that, I will be ordering desert in glee when I go out now, but right this second I’m off to Dunkin Donuts for that pink glazed, rainbow sprinkled donut that I’ve been dreaming about.