This weekend, E.J. and I had short vacation in Nacogdoches, TX where we went zip-lining, hiking, and shopping. We also fell off the wagon a little bit, which is honestly bound to happen occasionally. As tough as E.J. is on sticking to his plan, travel (especially for vacation) just requires a little leeway. What’s interesting though is HOW we choose to go off the rails, now that we’ve been Paleo for over a year.
First, it is done with great care and consideration. Neither of us mindlessly eats junk anymore. We think about each option and opportunity, and consciously choose when we’re going to eat something off-plan. Here are a few of the things that go through my mind when I’m making that decision:
- When was the last time I had this food? Is there a Paleo analogue that I’ve enjoyed recently? Am I likely to have the opportunity to have it again in the future? Local delicacies and special occasions or holidays warrant some extra consideration too. (i.e. when they buy you a cake for your birthday at work, you eat a small piece of cake. Period.)
- When was the last time I had something non-Paleo? Today? Last Week? Last month? When on vacation, I try not to be bad more than once a day, and even every other day if possible.
- Am I willing to suffer the intestinal consequences of this choice? At this point, every time I eat something off the plan, I end up with bloating at a minimum, and in many cases, severe abdominal pain, nausea, and/or gas. Is the food I want to eat really worth it?
Generally, these internal questions guide me away from the common junk (chips & salsa, pasta, rice, bread, etc) and allow me to only step out of bounds when the occasion truly calls for it. This weekend, we stayed at a bed and breakfast where the breakfast included biscuits and pancakes. Was it worth it? Yes, if for no other reason than because it pleased the grandmotherly lady that ran the place (though they really were delicious), but I certainly suffered for it afterward. I was glad to be back on-plan today. I just feel so much better when I stay the course.