Weight loss challenge: Discipline a struggle

Last month, like many Florida A&M University students, I went to Atlanta for the Classic.  I had a great time there; I enjoyed the game, and the band was superb, like always.

However, I did not realize how this weekend would challenge diet.

The days were action packed and there were parties every night. Unlike my Washington D.C. visit, I was able to make healthier eating choices in Atlanta, but quantity was the problem. 

When I ate out, I ordered salads but they didn’t fill me up. So I would often order something else to fill the emptiness which led to a setback in my regimen.

That weekend, I ate at restaurants like Gladys Knight and Ron Winans Chicken and Waffles, Cheesecake Factory and Hard Rock Cafe.

My first time at Gladys Knight’s, I tried eating a salad, but everyone who has been there knows you have to try the chicken and waffles. When I realized I was not full, I ordered of some.

My friends did not say anything about my food choices- they knew I was trying. When I ordered more food I felt a sense of satisfaction (I feel so fat saying that). And I didn’t hesitate at all. The food was great.

During Classic weekend, most of my friends tried to encourage me by suggesting healthier entrées. Others told me what I should not order.

Most of the time the advice sounded negative and degrading, as if they were responsible for “getting me together.” But right now there are two things I am trying to work on: controlling the quantity of what I eat and becoming disciplined with my exercise regimen.

Eating too much at once defeats the purpose of eating healthy all the time. I refuse to be my current size when my birthday rolls around. I’m constantly trying to reduce my portions. I’m eating enough food to satisfy my hunger, but not necessarily eating all the food on my plate. 

Sometimes I go the whole day without eating and when it is time for me to eat, I eat on the run. The biggest thing is that I am really trying to do is consistently exercise. 

Lately, I just workout whenever it is convenient instead of by a set schedule.

The best time for me to workout is in the morning but the campus Recreation Center does not open until 10am and that forces me to consider getting a membership at a gym that opens earlier.

This past Monday I worked out at the center for 15 minutes on the treadmill, 30 minutes on the elliptical, and 20 minutes with free weights.

After my morning workout, I felt great. I felt like I could run three miles once I was done! I was energetic for the remainder of the day.

Last week, I ran around the university track with one of my friends. Running really motivated me, even though I was tired and probably would not have gone on my own. If it were not for him, I probably would not have run that day.

My real problem stems from all my traveling this semester.  Two weekends ago, I was in Washington D.C., last weekend I was in Atlanta, this weekend I will be in Atlanta again and next weekend I will be in New Orleans. 

It’s really hard for me to stay consistent with my dieting. But to improve, I have started disciplining myself to workout everyday until my birthday.

It seems the closer I come to my goal date the more serious I am about my diet and exercising. So far, I have lost 3.5 pounds and I know I will be able to lose the next 26.5 pounds by my birthday, Nov. 29.