So I had my first official weigh in yesterday and I’m down 7.4 lbs from my starting weight, which was technically a week and a half ago. I literally jumped off the scale, did a little happy dance, and immediately texted two friends, my WW Coach and the Hubs with the good news.
Yes, progress is a reason to celebrate.
Although I totally get that you typically experience bigger losses at the start of ANY new program, I needed that little burst of momentum to push me forward with the new Weight Watchers SmartPoints plan. The Hubs is tracking points too and he’s actually looking forward to his weigh-in tomorrow! (Miracles are happenin’ around here, people.)
I also celebrated a major win on the professional front, so it was an all around peachy day.
That is, until I felt the need to celebrate my success with food.
What is that about anyway? When did food become such a prevalent part of our rewards system? Can we blame this on Eve and that whole Garden of Eden business?
I don’t think we get off the hook quite that easily.
The idea of food as a reward starts before kids are even out of diapers. Way back when, I worked at a daycare and we used “potty treats” to motivate kids during potty training. The concept was simple: Go poop in the potty and you get an M&M. Or a gummy bear. Or [insert snack food/candy of choice.]
As our kids get older, we continue to reward good behavior and achievements with food.
“Great job cleaning up your toys buddy! Here’s a cookie.”
“You got all A’s on your report card? Let’s go get some donuts.”
“Your team won the big game! Who’s up for pizza and ice cream?”
We get a promotion so we go out for a big dinner to celebrate. We work really hard on a project at home, so we’ve earned ourselves a big juicy burger. We’re mothers managing a house full of kids, pets and carpools…for the love, surely we deserve a sweet treat or a big glass of wine for that, right?
Here’s the thing. There’s nothing inherently wrong with enjoying good food with good people or having an occasional indulgence. I’m not even suggesting that we nix the reward system. We’re pretty much hard-wired to think in terms of work/reward, and I’ve got enough stuff to unlearn without adding that to the list.
I do, however, want to think a bit more creatively about what I use to reward myself (and my family) in the future. This week, why not brainstorm a list of things or experiences to use in lieu of food when we need a little extra motivation?
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to “treat” yourself to something other than food. Ladies, if you can, invest in fun accessories, makeup or things that make you feel beautiful no matter what size you’re wearing these days. (Jane.com is a great resource for SUPER affordable accessories. And no, that’s not an affiliate link. I just love their site!)
Don’t underestimate the power of using experiences as rewards, either. Try going to the park instead of Krispy Kreme. Linger over a good book or an episode of your favorite show instead of devouring a Starbucks cake pop. Incidentally, that was my “reward” yesterday. [Insert dramatic sigh.] I’ve tracked it and moved on.
Whatever you do to reward yourself and your kids, be creative, work within your budget and find what make sense for you and your family!
As I celebrate my little victories this week, both on and off the scale, I am going to LIVE IT UP. From now on, though, I’ll think twice about using food to do it.
Pin it for later.