I’m still not back on writing about the 12 Dimensions of Wellness, but I wanted to talk about restriction and dieting in the new year vs. limiting yourself and making good choices. Back in December, I can’t remember when exactly, I decided that I was drinking too much soda. When I was 17 I decided to give up drinking soda altogether. At the time I was living off of Blimpey’s footlong sandwiches, NutriGrain bars by the box, Skittles, Hamburger Helper, and Mountain Dew. It was not a good time in my life. I was overworked in so many ways and my wellness was not a top priority. For most teenagers it is not and I’m hoping that what I do for a living will help my own children to have wellness at the forefront of their minds more than most.
But, I digress. As I said, When I was 17 I gave up drinking soda and didn’t have it again until sometime during my freshman year of college….around the time I was 19. It was quite a feat for someone my age to go without soda for so long. And even after I added it back into my beverage choices, I still mostly drank lemonade. Neither is an optimal choice, but hey, no carbonation.
In December I decided once again to give up those fizzy beverages after I found that I was the one finishing them off all the time at home. I was the one not drinking enough water each day and opting for soda. I was allowing my children to have more soda than I would have liked as well. So, farewell soda!
I bring this up because in January a lot of people swear off things and start to live in a restrictive fashion. They give up carbs or dairy or meat or something else that’s a whole food group. Soda is not a food group and I am not losing any nutritional value by eliminating it from my diet. It’s also not something that brings me joy, so I don’t feel restricted by eliminating it.
What I have been shocked by is the lack of options at certain places I have been in the last few weeks. For example, we went to the movies and I got a large fountain drink for my kids and I to share, assuming that lemonade or fruit punch would be an option and I would water it down some. NOPE! I had to ask them to fill my cup at the bar area with what lemonade they had left. Luckily they put a lot of ice in it first so it started to water down on its own.
The airport is another place I found it hard to find other options and at a pizza place my family and ate at. Don’t get me wrong, I KNOW that water is the best choice for me, but every once in awhile I want some flavor. So, I have started drinking more tea. I’ve been an avid tea drinker in the mornings for the past 3 years or so. Now I’m doing the iced tea version during the day with either lunch or dinner, but not both.
Why not both? Well, because in NC the best option for tea has been sweet tea, unless I make it myself. I am working on breaking the sugar habit in the future, but again, at a point when it won’t feel restrictive. I tell you all of this because I encourage you to consider your New Year’s Resolutions in two ways:
- Does what I set out to do or not do promote my wellness?
- Does this feel restrictive enough that I am not going to want to stick with it?
Do any of your resolutions involve giving up anything?