I ate a box of Girl Scout cookies by myself the other night. That’s right, a whole box. By myself.
I work at a clinic for women with eating disorders, so I know quite well how terrifying that experience could have been for someone. Heck, there are quite a few women generally regarded as fully confident, healthy eaters who, at the thought of eating seven servings of chocolate and peanut butter cookies, fight the desire to go sweat off those extra calories.
And, for a second, I considered doing just that. I mean, I’m studying to be a dietitian so I know full-well what over consumption can do to a person.
But then I remembered how much I love cookies. And if I eat a whole box of Girl Scout cookies one night because I was too distracted watching The Bachelor while working on my Advanced Nutrition assignment to notice that I just ate fourteen cookies, the odds are that I’ll make it to see another day. And I won’t wake up with a tire around my waist either. More realistically, I’ll have a stomach ache and maybe even a cavity. But I won’t suffer serious consequences from one box of cookies.
Don’t be fooled, this isn’t a message from your future dietitian saying that what I did was a healthy thing. That’s hardly my point. Instead, it’s a gentle reminder to all dieters, calorie-counters, and weight-conscious people (me included!) out there that slips happen. And when they do, it’s so important that our knee-jerk response isn’t to cut calories the next day, or to abuse ourselves for eating something that tasted good at the time. When slips happen, we need to acknowledge them, and then move on and live our life as we know is best. That’s all.
So, maybe tomorrow I’ll set my alarm early and run before work. Or maybe I won’t. But I will start my day with breakfast and I will do my darndest to get in all of my food groups. And while I'm watching Grey's Anatomy tomorrow night, I'm leaving the snacks in the kitchen, out of reach.
I’m not perfect, nor are you. Even that chiseled beauty on the cover of the fitness magazine indulges in her cravings every so often.
I don't know what you eat, or why you eat, but I do know that we all must eat in order to survive. That being the case, we should try our best to enjoy the whole process. So if you're craving something sweet, don't be cruel to yourself - have at it.
Just remember (and I will too!), everything in moderation. A cookie or two never hurt anyone ;)
Today and every day, be good to yourself.