Fighting the Slow Gain
For me it was 100 or so. Not in one morning, but over ten years. I fell into the habit of rewarding myself after hard days with food. What is a totally encouraged mental health process became a habit, because each day got harder and harder. Not through stress (though certainly still a concern), but because it was physically harder to stay active all day. I kept eating and getting more and more out of shape to the point where getting winded after a flight of stairs was something I tried to excuse away as a bad knee.
We all need a cheat meal, comfort food, and a second to relish what we cook.
But relying on it as a crutch, instead of addressing the actual stress and issues that are the underlying cause of that day’s stress isn’t healthy. If you’re finding yourself always drained, never having the energy to get through the full day, take an honest look at what you’re doing. We can’t all quit our jobs and become sherpas or open a craft brewery (I’m still holding out for my bar someday), but we can take steps to limit how much work stress affects our life. Even small steps, like not answering emails after 5pm or on weekends, going for a ten minute walk every few hours, or adopting the Office Space mantra of “This job doesn’t define me” can help create a mental break for your recovery.
This is just the canned list every self help book or Buzzfeed article will give you. Because, quite frankly, it works.
- Disconnect and spend some “you time” doing whatever it is you actually enjoy.
- Get exhausted. Work out, physically tire yourself.
- You’d be shocked to see how quickly you recover and how much better you feel
- Change up your routine after work.
- Always go home, sit on the couch, turn on netflix, and throw a frozen pizza in the oven? Go for an hour walk. Read a book for two hours. Something. Throw your routine out and try something new.
I cannot emphasize the hour walk enough. Depending on your weight, walking can burn 500 calories an hour. If you do that 7 days a week, you’ve burned a pound of fat. Every day for a year and you’ve lost 52lbs. Without changing your diet AT ALL. It’s probably enough to offset that gradual weight gain we hit because of those occasional bad meals. Give it a shot for a week, lemme know how it goes for you.