Weekly Challenge #1: No Chocolate

Weekly Challenge #1: No Chocolate

I have come to the conclusion that I have been eating too much chocolate. Although this always happens around Halloween, the past two months might as well have been an extended Halloween. Like the 12 Days of Christmas, only it’s the 60 Days of Halloween.

So for my first Weekly Challenge (a new thing I decided to start doing, just because), I will not eat any chocolate. I will do this for seven days and see how it goes.

Um, you have a little, uh, just a little bit on your, um

I didn’t used to eat chocolate regularly. When I lived on my own (or with roommates) and was only responsible for buying food for myself, I never bought chocolate. I might eat it every now and then at like, a party, but it wasn’t a normal part of my grocery shopping.

For almost a year, I’ve been living with my mom because she’s needed medical care. She likes chocolate. She was always a super healthy eater, but she definitely likes her chocolate – to the point where at some defining moment in her life she fully embraced it as a personality trait. If you were ever stuck on choosing a gift for her, a CHOCOLATE LOVER t-shirt or an I BREAK FOR CHOCOLATE bumper sticker or just a REGULAR BOX OF CHOCOLATE were all solid ideas.

So I’ve been living in a house that has had an abundance of chocolate covered almonds, chocolate covered raisins, chocolate (non-dairy) ice cream, cacao nibs, chocolate chip cookies, and just plain old chocolate chips. It’s always around. For the most part, I’ve been pretty good about having it in moderation.

What’s made the chocolate cravings worse is actually being at work, a job I started two months ago. About 10 feet from my desk is a bottomless tub o’ candy filled with bite-sized 3 Musketeers, Milky Ways, Snickers, Peppermint Patties, m&ms, and my #1 fave, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

There is also a tub of Twizzlers and a tub of wintergreen Life Savers, both of which I’ll have every so often. But the choco-tub is usually where my hand ends up.

I’ve gone from having one or two pieces of chocolate a day to four or five. Since I input everything I eat into MyFitnessPal, and never go over my daily allotment of calories (I’ll write more about how I do this in a later post!) it’s not like I’m necessarily gaining weight from this. At the same time, a larger percentage of my calories is coming from sugar. Which… ain’t good.

So I decided it would be a good challenge to give up chocolate for a week! I know I can do this physically, but I’m curious as to how I will deal with it mentally. Especially after lunch. This should be interesting.

I also just love challenges in discipline. I think for the most part we tend to not trust ourselves and think we can’t do [insert thing we want to do]. But we usually can. It’s just a little bit harder than the path of least resistance. Unless we’re talking about something truly impossible (i.e. I want to become a NASA astronaut by this time next year), the thing you want to accomplish is most likely very possible. It’s might not be easy, but it’s possible.

By the way, I’m not saying chocolate is bad and you should never have it. I just want to reset my cravings so my body doesn’t automatically expect sugar immediately after my salad, or in the late afternoon when I want a snack and could easily have an apple or a cup of soup. It’s less “chocolate is bad” and more of a “cravings reset.” A palate retraining, if you will.

And wouldn’t you know it, as I walked into work, I noticed something odd: the chocolate tub is totally empty. I’m off to a good start.

p.s. the photo up top is a self-portrait from 2010 where I poured chocolate ice cream on my face.

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