It’s Friday, a day that has been known to turn many otherwise serious and rational people into giddy, adventurous versions of their normally staid selves.
I am no exception. Which is why I gave in this morning and got a — GASP! — cheese danish from Starbucks. And scarfed down all 420 calories of it in probably under a minute.
These moments of backsliding can be quite frequent if I don’t have a meal plan in place. Sometimes even if I do. The cereal just wasn’t calling to me this morning. I thought, “It’s Friday, live a little!”
But that kind of thinking can be dangerous. I’ve been known to lead myself down the path of temptation with these clever maxims as well:
“It’s hump day. You need massive amounts of chocolate to get through the rest of the week.”
“It’s Monday. Fried foods are OK to start off the week. You’ll work it off later.”
“Of course you need a half a block of that gourmet cheese to go with that wine.”
See where this is going? I can always find a reason to eat poorly and wrap it in some “I deserve it” sentiment, sprinkled with just enough guilt to muster some penance exercise later. (That punishment never seems to fit the crime, by the way.)
So my introspection into why I allow these occasional (OK, frequent) guilty pleasures makes me wonder: When is giving in giving up?
I’ve known of a lot of people who throw in the towel without even realizing it because they don’t make a wholesale change in their approach to getting healthy. Or those who see one setback as irrefutable evidence that a diet plan is just not for them. I don’t want to fall into those traps.
But I also don’t want to give up the part of myself that enjoys the epicurean pleasures in life.
It would be ideal to strike some sort of balance, or so I tell myself in my more rational moments. Most diets take into account such weakness and allow for “treating oneself” so as not to fall off the wagon completely.
Additionally, there are many low-fat, low-cal versions of my favorite treats out there that I can erase some of the guilt by just choosing wisely.
Including, I’ve found out, that cheese danish.