Last week felt like everything kept going downhill without stopping. I was an emotional wreck and by the end was just trying to take everything one day at a time. Thankfully, everything is resolved and I can move forward with a smile on my face confident everything will be okay.
Having said that, it probably means the title of the post is confusing. How could last week have been one of my best if it involved me being an emotional wreck? I certainly don’t wish to relive last week, but I learned some really important things about myself that make me feel even more encouraged regarding my health goals.
In the past I have always allowed bad days, weeks, or months to take over and consume me. I’m an emotional eater with a sweet tooth so my typical mode of operation is to go home and bake lots of desserts, or buy junk food, and sit on the couch watching lots of TV. It was an unhealthy practice that, a majority of the time, was the reason I didn’t succeed at my goals. Score one for me though because I didn’t do that last week.
That isn’t to say that I didn’t want to. I came to work last Wednesday morning with my running gear and every intention of going for a run after work and by 4 pm the last thing I wanted to do was put on my running shoes and go for a run. I kept reasoning with myself that I could put it off, one day off wouldn’t kill me.
I was right, one day off wouldn’t kill me, but I knew it wasn’t a smart decision. Ultimately, ten minutes before the end of my work day I dragged my butt to the bathroom and changed, reasoning if I decided in the car I didn’t want to run I didn’t have to. Then I drove to the park and I had one of my best runs. A slow and steady two miler, it allowed me to clear my head and really take in the beautiful springtime scenery around me. I felt so much better and refreshed, and was able to put some things into perspective.
That run was definitely a win, but the wins didn’t stop there. I was starving after running and remembered I was out of food at home. So I needed to go to the grocery store, while hungry and in a depressed mood, definitely not a safe move. I knew that junk food would be calling my name, and I was right.
I went to the grocery store determined. I was going to shop the perimeter of the store. I would only enter the aisles for a bottle of olive oil. Well wouldn’t you know it, I succeeded! I purchased a cart full of fresh fruit and vegetables, some meat and eggs and I didn’t even try to purchase anything unhealthy!
This was a HUGE win for me, and I was able to prove to myself that I don’t need food to help me feel better emotionally. It sparked a series of healthy decisions that continued throughout the week. I went for a five mile run that Friday, when again, it was the last thing I wanted to do, and I cooked lots of healthy and tasty meals to enjoy instead of junk food.
I know this isn’t the last time something difficult will come my way, so it’s encouraging to know that I can successfully handle my emotions without having to turn to unhealthy habits. Wallowing with sugar and lethargy may feel great in the moment, but it’s always left me feeling gross in the days that follow. Now when I think back to last week I’ll be able to remember how I didn’t let my negative emotions screw up a positive routine. Excuse me while I celebrate this major victory