Such a relative, subjective word. In a way, COMPLETELY meaningless, and yet we fully rely on it.
During my most successful weight-loss period (April to July, 2009 ~ lost 20 lbs in 15 weeks), I followed the Setting Captives Free eating plan. You know, the one I obviously can't decide if I'm going to follow ever again! I've sometimes had posted in my sidebar, but then I remove it because I'm not following it.... tsk, tsk.
Anyway, it's like this:
Monday ~ liquids only
Tuesday ~ half day
Wednesday ~ liquids only
Thursday ~ normal
Friday ~ fasting/liquids only
Saturday ~ normal
Sunday ~ half day
"Half days" are where you literally eat only half what you normally would. Fasting or liquids only days are pretty self-explanatory, but you still eat one light meal per day (I always ate supper). And "normal" days are when you eat like you normally would.
At the beginning, I often wondered what the Setting Captives Free people who thought up this eating plan meant by "normal." Both the "normal" and the "half" days DEPEND on knowing what they mean by NORMAL!!
Do they mean "normal," as in, what and how I have eaten until now? or do they mean "normal," as in, what I would like my normal to look like in the future?
For me, the temptation is to use those "normal" days as an excuse to fall into the comfort of bad habits and over-eating. Because that would be NORMAL. I believe, however, that that is NOT the idea behind "normal" days.
Ideally, these "normal" days are supposed to look like we'd like them to look ~ you know, like how they'll look when we're skinny! Eating anything in moderation, but never over-eating, certainly no routine fast foods or unhealthy snacking, and making sure it's our allowing our bodies letting us know when it's time to refuel rather than our habits and emotions.
I had a pretend conversation with someone as I walked one day ~ someone who, a few months down the road, of course, was commenting on how great I looked and asking whatever had been my secret. As I conversed and explained how I got to looking so fabulous, I realized that I was sharing a testimony. My testimony. My path out of slavery to gluttony, of taking up my cross and dying to self-indulgence, of kicking the devil and his lies to the curb, and giving my angels an excuse to party every day. To the point where the party ran non-stop.
I noticed, as I spoke, that my idea of "normal" eating in the future looks very different from the days I often have. And I realized, that continuing to allow "THOSE DAYS" will only delay ~ and most likely cancel ~ that future.
I'll never get to the point where "normal" for me is fruit and whole wheat toast for breakfast, homemade trailmix for a mid-morning snack, a bowl of vegetable soup or a salad for lunch, celery sticks with cheese for an afternoon snack, a small well-balanced supper, and a small yogurt for evening snack... That's NEVER gonna happen if I'm having a stack of pancakes in the afternoon, two greasy, deep-fried chicken breasts and fries smothered in gravy for supper, and wolfing it down like there's no tomorrow ~ simply because that WAS my normal!
I need a NEW normal.
How would YOU like your "normal" to look?
Let's you and me
LIVE OUR NEW NORMAL