I’m realizing my Thursdays are numbered so ramping up is necessary

When I started this yearlong project last September I compiled a list of about 40 things I thought I could/should quit.  Over the last 10 months I’ve added things as life happened as it always does and the list grew.  So the predicament I find myself in is I have 6 Thursday’s left and 17 things on my list.  I realize there’s a very, very good chance that the world won’t implode if I don’t complete the list (can’t speak for our chances during the eclipse though) but being my neurotic self I want to wrap this up as neatly as possible.

Up to this point I’ve quit numerous things that had a deleterious effect on my health.  There were the physical things like pop, candy, too much coffee, sweets, drive thru and eating out and all the mental things too numerous to mention.  I found the latter to be much more difficult to follow and keep in mind than the former, perhaps evidence of the difficulty in changing how we’re wired versus how we live.  In any event I’ve decided to check off three physical things this Thursday.  Two are daily things and one is a weekly.

I’ve never been a breakfast eater.  I didn’t grow up with much more than cold cereal in the morning, which was okay.  My mom actually threw me off when I was senior in high school by making me oatmeal on a fairly regular basis.  (Guess she was getting sentimental because I would be heading away to college soon, at least that’s my theory)  I just about didn’t know how to act.  In fact my best spouse ever (she’s my only one so far, we’ll see how this plays) offered to make me breakfast as a regular thing the other day and I declined.  Guess I figure I’m not worthy; it’s just seems like such a bother.  When you get down to it, that’s why I don’t eat breakfast, it’s a hassle.  Unfortunately if I don’t eat a meal then I’ve had a propensity to eat it late at night, hence the quitting eating after 9:00.  I know this m.o. isn’t good for me and it has to change.

Something else that has to change is what I drink during the day.  Sure, I’m down to only 2 cups of coffee and I’ve given up pop but I haven’t reverted to water like I should have.  I’m more of an ice tea drinker (yeah, I know, just a coffee substitute and caffeine source).  My kids talk about drinking a gallon of water a day, something I can hardly fathom.  To be honest when I have made sporadic efforts to up my H2O intake I’ve gotten more exercise albeit going back and forth to the restroom but the resolve has never held.  Sooner or later I get sick of the blah-ness of water.  If this is going to have any prayer whatsoever I’m going to need to invest in some sort of flavoring (and not Kool-Aid, although who doesn’t love Grape Kool-Aid).  I’m sure I’ll have to go Crystal Light or something like that to avoid drinking the equivalent of a soda an hour in sugar.  These two will be daily challenges so making them tough but the weekly habit is no easier.  It has to do with those titans; fat and salt.

My wife and I are very regular movie goers.  We started going on Saturday mornings years ago to take advantage of $5 movies.  Now, I think we go for the recliners.  Me personally, I have to admit I’ve gone to some movies just for the popcorn.  Believe me, I realize the stuff they put on popcorn at the movies is tons worse than butter.  I think it might be some oil blend with butter flavoring and crack cocaine for good measure.  In any event I’m hooked on it.  And not a sensible, realistic amount of it either; we’re talking I eat this stuff by the gallon volume.  That’s the large one in case you didn’t know.  But it just has to stop.  Between the fat, carbs and salt and a little digestive disruption thrown in I’m probably taking a half hour off my life with every matinee.  It has to stop.

So, this Thursday I’m going to make a plan (and a breakfast item) the night before to grab as I go out the door in the morning.  I’m going to get some MiO to make water more palatable and keep me coming back for more.  I’m going to stop eating popcorn every time we’re at the movies and limit myself to the small every other time we see a movie.  I’ll avoid the “buttery-flavored topping” (btw, this is how you know it’s not butter and probably worse for you) every other time too.  These are all habits and habits are creatable as well as breakable.  I’ll be shooting for the trifecta on both accounts in the coming weeks.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

It’s taken me almost a year to get to these three probably partly because I hate giving up fat, salt, caffeine and breakfast muffins from the vending machine (there I said it!).  It’s time though and if the past 10 months have taught me nothing it’s that I can beat these old habits.  If you know someone who needs some encouragement to break a bad one, please pass this along.

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