On Making Better Choices.

On Making Better Choices.

This is the second post as part of my participation in the ZonePerfect Blog Forward campaign. Mandatory disclosure is required for every program-related post. I hereby disclose to you that although I have entered the program and received complimentary product and ZonePerfect promotional items, I am free to comment about ZonePerfect in a positive, neutral or negative fashion.

And if you stick with me to the end on this one, there’s something in it for you. But you love me, so you’re going to keep reading, right? Of course you are.

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One of my resolutions this year (just like every year for the last 15+ years) is to lose weight and to get in better health. I go in fits and spurts. I do well, then I crash and burn. I lack consistency. Sometimes this happens because I go too far with my diet or exercise, other times it’s because I’m lazy and pizza tastes good. So do burritos. And ice cream.

Here’s the thing: I know better. I know that everything is OK in moderation, I just often lack the motivation to do things in moderation. So when I make these poor choices, I feel terrible about myself. Feeling terrible doesn’t exactly inspire me to do better, so I don’t. It’s a vicious cycle, you guys.

I haven’t lost any weight this year. I haven’t really gained, either. But holding steady isn’t what I want for myself and it certainly isn’t healthy. The only real option I have is to work on making small improvements, make better choices and lose the weight in a reasonable way. Those of you who make these healthy choices already are thinking, “Well, duh, Michelle, yeah.” And those of you who are in the same boat I am know how hard those changes are to make.

One recent change has been to include Greek yogurt as a major component of my breakfast. It’s filling and packed with protein, so I stay full longer than if I had, say, a bagel. (Mmm. Bagels…)

Another thing I’ve been doing, particularly on weekends when I’m running like a maniac, is to throw in a Zone bar. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, those things come in mighty handy. I can eat them while I’m getting stuff done around the house and since they come in a neat little wrapper, I don’t even have to dirty a plate, thus saving valuable time not washing an additional dish. Seriously though, they are packed with protein and are super satisfying.

You see, if I eat lunch at 11am when I’m hungry, I want to eat dinner at 4pm. We don’t eat dinner until usually 8pm or later (please don’t tell me how bad this is for me, I already know but this is just the way things are). The end result is I end up snacking way too much in the afternoon and it’s never healthy. I’ve found that a bar around 11 lets me hold off on lunch until 1pm and things fall into place better.

This isn’t the magic cure to all of my weight woes, but it helps. I feel like I’m more in control of my hunger, which makes me feel good. Feeling good helps me to not eat half a pizza for dinner followed by a pint of ice cream. This is one of the little things that I’m hoping will add up to bigger things later.

Also, if you’re obsessed with coconut like I am lately, I highly recommend the Perfectly Simple Toasted Coconut bar. Honestly, I could eat a million of them. They aren’t paying me to say that, they are just that good.

Are you interested in trying some? Become A ZonePerfect® VIP & Save up to $10* Your first coupon will be emailed to you. Join Now . *$10 in savings relates to savings spread across a one year period and may vary.

Oh, hey, one other thing! The good people at ZonePerfect sent me a neat little portable charger that I can charge, then take with me places to charge my devices when I’m not near a place where I can charge my devices in a regular outlet!

Guess what? They actually sent me two and I’m giving one of them to one lucky reader.

All you have to do to enter the giveaway is leave a comment on this post. Then I will use a very sophisticated method to pick a winner. By sophisticated I mean I’m going to write the names down on little pieces of paper, throw them all in a hat and pull one out. Maybe I’ll let my kid pull it out. Full disclosure: it might not be a hat. It could be a bowl. Or a vase. Or just a pile. But it will be random because I’m very honest. I promise. You trust me, right?

The contest ends at 8:00 AM Eastern time on Monday, June 2, 2014. The winner will be notified via email and will have to send me his or her mailing address so that I can mail the charger. It’s totally on the up and up and I will never stop by unannounced. Or announced even, because I’m not really the stopping by type.

OK. That’s it. I’m off to eat a healthy snack and you have some commenting to do!

6.4.14… Edited to add: The big winner is STACIE!! You can read Stacie’s blog here. She is awesome, so I recommend that you do that.

14 Responses to “On Making Better Choices.”

  1. Sam Merel says:

    We never eat dinner until after 8 either, usually closer to 9. When people carry on about how bad it is to eat late at night I just shove earplugs in and ignore it because it’s what works for us, so who cares what everyone else says? Also, I know this is totally the opposite of the point of this post, but I now desperately want a pizza.

    • michellelongo says:

      I always want pizza because pizza is so good. I feel better when I eat earlier just because I don’t have dinner sitting in my stomach when I fall asleep 15 minutes after I finish. But it’s highly unlikely that we’ll eat before 7 at best any time soon.

  2. Stacie says:

    I am so happy these little things are helping you! I believe that slow and steady is really the only way to go, to change habits. Otherwise, it’s a vicious yo-yo cycle. And-I am not just saying this to make you feel better-there are studies showing that the times you eat your meals (e.g. 8pm dinner) are irrelevant to weight gain/loss. Look at Europeans. They eat super late and are generally more fit than Americans. So enjoy your 8pm dinners!

    • michellelongo says:

      I think the bigger problem with my late dinner is that I go to sleep right after I eat. Maybe that isn’t really true, but it’s nice to have something to blame it on 😉 I’m sure it’s much more the quality and quantity of my dinner than the timing of it. But I’m starting with breakfast and working my way up. And if I could figure out how to not stress eat on the difficult days, I’d probably be set for life!

  3. Dawn Colli says:

    Michelle…I always enjoying reading your blogs….I feel your pain….every year I say I am going to eat better, lose weight, get healthy…blah blah blah….So here we are approaching June and ask me what I ate for dinner…and snack and snack after that last nite! I will not even tell you…that is how much I dislike myself about it right now. And dinner before 8? People really do that! Yeah, not so much in my house….by the time I make the 4 dinners I need to satisfy everyone, I am surprised it is not 10 pm…so hey, I am pretty proud of eating by 8! lol Never heard of this “Zone” thing…but may check it out…hey, I hope it works for you….sounds like it is giving you the little confidence here and there to help keep you motivated! And maybe enough motivation to get me to start doing some little things to help me feel better about myself and motivated to make the first step toward positive change!

    • michellelongo says:

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Dawn. I really do appreciate it! 4 dinners is a lot – I thought my two were bad! I think a big part of things is we have to stop beating ourselves up when we make choices we know aren’t the best. We can try to do better, but negative self-talk (and I am the queen of putting myself down!) doesn’t help the situation. The Zone bars are good – my store has them near the granola bars and fruit stacks and stuff. You might find them by the high-protein bars in the health aisle, too. I’m not really sure.

  4. Tammie Huppert says:

    We rarely eat dinner before 8pm and I know it’s bad to do that(I get scolded by my mom about it all the time). We also don’t really eat healthy either, lots of delivery which I know I know it terrible. I need to start going food shopping again and get healthier meals. I also have a terrible habit of only eating 1 meal a day and snacking on junk throughout the day. Maybe I will take some cues from you and the others that commented and whip my bum into a better gear. I don’t need to loose weight I need to gain, but the hubby needs to drop some pounds. Thank you for sharing. I am hoping to start eating healthier soon.

    • michellelongo says:

      Thanks for reading and commenting Tammie! I try not to focus on the weight but on the better health (which I know will lead to weight loss), but the weight is easy to see/point out. Delivery is hard for us, too. We’re so beat at the end of the day, but I need to stop with that excuse and find the time to cook. I felt my best when I was eating healthy 80% of the time. I was in shape, had energy, and rarely got sick. I need to stick to that!

  5. I’m putting the toasted coconut bar on my list for tomorrow’s grocery run. I need something that is a better snacking or between meal choice than gummy bunnies or cheddar crackers. It’d be nice to throw in some protein and vitamins into the mix.

    Thanks for reminding me I have choices!

    • michellelongo says:

      I hope you enjoy them! I really like the Simple line best – they don’t taste like candy bars. Some of the others are a little candy-ier. Glad you were able to take something from this!

  6. I am starting eating better, TODAY. Because it’s summer in LA and I’d like to at least fit into my shorts before another heat wave strikes again.
    Also, coconut is the best. I make coconut popsicles, I am that obsessed with it.

    • michellelongo says:

      You’ll have to tell me about these coconut popsicles. They sound wonderful. I have my fat shorts to get me through. The ones I bought two years ago and swore I’d never wear another summer because I’d be too thin for them. Good thing I kept them. I hope they aren’t tight.

  7. Cheryl Ives says:

    I eat breakfast at 6 a.m. so lunch is usually around 11. I have the problem of getting hungry between lunch and dinner since I don’t eat dinner until 6 (due to work schedule) I try to eat healthy snacks (peanut butter, yogurt) but don’t always make the best choices. I have added Greek yogurt to my breakfast/snacking choices and that does help.

    • michellelongo says:

      Yes, it’s the long stretches between actual meals due to scheduling that do me in. The protein seems to be the way to go, at least that’s what everyone’s saying. It seems to work. Thanks for reading and commenting!

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