Stream of Consciousness

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Competitive Eating

I feel better about myself when I eat healthier than my roomates. Or when I run more than they do. Or when I eat less than they do. There's some kind of satisfaction that comes through my inner monologue that says, "Yeah, you're WAY better than them. You're being healthy."

Last night was like that. I got home after a whole day in my cubicle and could not wait to get outside. I grabbed some sushi on the way home because I was starving and a big bottle of water. I found two of my roommates playing cards in the dark living room and I secretly gloated to myself.

I ran hard for about 2 or 3 miles (quite an accomplishment for me, but I want to learn/train to run farther). From my apartment out to MIT across the Charles and back. Some girls even (drunkenly) cheered me on as they thought I was finishing up the Boston Marathon on my trip back down Mass Ave. It was pretty fun to have people cheering for me, even if I didn't actually deserve it.

I felt great and energized and focused. All the annoyances and frustrations of the day washed away as I got lost breathing, listening to my feet pound the sidewalk as I dodged tourists and commuters.

And then there's this morning. Free breakfast foods at work. I just realized I've eaten a pastry, half a muffin, half a bagel, a slice of pizza, and coffee already today. What happened to my healthy eating? It frustrates me because I will eat it and then I will berate myself later. I miss the discipline and self control I had on Weight Watchers. I might go back just for the structure. Start tracking again. I miss how strong and full and energized my body felt when I ate salads, fruits, lean chicken, salmon, and gallons of water.

I think the competitive eating syndrome can be useful to motivate you to do things your body is craving anyways - healthy habits. But I think that if you're doing it for the competition then you lose your inner focus (and end up eating 80 grams of sugar before noon!). I also don't want to let the competition turn into an ED because I know that's entirely possible. I think I need more time for myself and less time working/volunteering for other projects right now. I need to streamline, I need to focus on me.

No comments: