Struggling to come back…

From July 1 to August 22, I was all over England and Ireland.  Study abroad, you know, plus some traveling on the side. Truth be told, I miss it horribly.  Part of it was not concerning myself with WW. I was in a new place and I wanted to experience it fully, food included. And I did… Probably more than I should. During the first few days when I was in London, I actually lost weight seeing as I had to buy new jeans because all of them were loose after walking all day every day for four days.  Plus during that time, I had a good hearty breakfast that usually included tea, OJ, yogurt, berry cereal, and home made bread and jam (which was so good!)… My B&B owner was getting her Masters in Nutrition so I did pretty well there.  Then if I found time or even remembered to eat lunch, I’d get something small like a wrap or something similar. I was far too busy seeing things and being fascinated by everything to eat at that point. For dinner, I’d almost always try something new (that is, once again, if I remembered to eat!) and I ended up trying Italian, Turkish, Indian, and Chinese food.  I quickly discovered that pasta and pizza was ten-times better than in America though. And of course, I had to try the British staple of Fish and Chips…. Yeah not so much a fish fan (unless it was slathered in tartar sauce), but I did enjoy the chips very much!  Since the drinking age there is 18, I tried a few drinks as well–a particular favorite being cider.

There was one thing about the food in England and Ireland that I LOVED… Everything was so fresh and tasty!  Nearly everything was all-natural and without preservatives. Like the vegetables and fruits, I’ve never tasted anything like them. I got home and had a salad and was horribly disappointed in the quality.  Ok back to the other food stuff, since I feel all of this should be said.

When I got to Cambridge, I didn’t have the meal plan so I was a frequent shopper at the nearby Sainsbury’s. My stock normally consisted of probiotic fruit yogurt (which was divine because the fruits tasted so fresh!), breakfast bars, Alpin low-cal fruit snack bars, bread, turkey, low sugar oatmeal, low fat cheese, peanut butter, raspberry jam, instant soup mix (particularly tomato), carrots, and apples. Sounds pretty good right for not being able to really cook anything?  When I stayed to the confines of my room to eat, I generally did okay!  It was when I ventured out to experience new things that I got in trouble. I found several restaurants that I loved… and some desserts that I soon figured out would be hard to give up (like my caramel slices and English chocolate).  Like the pizza and pasta, the chocolate and sweets over there were amazing! Nearly every meal had a dessert… either that, or it was at least one chocolate bar a day. Ooooh, or the yummy cookies that the buttery made daily and were only 35p each or 1.50 for 5. Then there was the amazing tuna paninis at the buttery as well as the hot chocolate from Cafe Nero and the late night burger runs with the guy that I ended up really liking near the end of the program. Not to mention the pizza and cola I used to keep myself awake and alert enough to write coherent essays the week they were due. And the chocolate bars that were constantly available. I seriously brought home 5 pounds of English chocolate for my family to try… we still have leftovers. In fact, I just finished a bar. Yes, I’m that addicted. I need help.

In London I was constantly active, from 10 in the morning until 10 at night.  Whereas in Cambridge, I didn’t walk as much because of classes and hanging out with friends at the bars, downing ciders, vodka mixers and other alcoholic treats. Yeah– in the world of WW — all of this would be considered NOT BEHAVING! To be honest, I really couldn’t care less. I was having a blast and I still fit into the clothes that I brought with me.

Ireland became a whole new ball game… well in one way at least. With Ireland came Guinness… with black currant (as pointed out by a new friend I made my first night at a pub). Divinity! Oh my goodness… I will forever owe Nadine a debt because of her invaluable drinking tips. So pretty much, I had one every night of the five days I was there if not more! The locals were surprised how easily I managed to down a pint of Guinness. It was love at first sip :P

The after hellish airport experiences, I flew to Minneapolis over night and wanted to get a drink only to realize, “I’m not old enough to drink here yet!” Yeah, pretty sure I was pissed as it was the only time in my life that I ever felt I actually needed a Guinness. Well, I only have one more month left (exactly!) until I’m 21 then I won’t have this problem.

So now I’m home! With my resolve and determination for WW completely shot. My first week back, I didn’t go to a meeting because my normal WI day is Saturday and my schedule doesn’t really allow me to go any other day (I started school not even two days after returning home… I’m crazy, I know). So I had that week to try and get all my bad eating habits out of the way. Weighed in that Saturday to find that I gained about 8 pounds back from when I left.  Considering how much food and alcohol I consumed, I’m surprised it wasn’t more.

First week back, I did pretty well… losing .8 pounds.  But this past week, I just lost it! I seriously don’t know what is going on. Could be the stress I’m under at school and work, or the drama with the fact that I’m falling for someone I shouldn’t and it’s taking all my restraint to not kiss him.  Chocolate is the only real cure for that… Friends don’t cut it. Mine don’t anyways because they all have boyfriends or hubbies. It doesn’t really help that my family buys candy or makes sweets often because I have the biggest sweet tooth in my family. I know people will say “Only you can control what goes in your mouth and it’s not their fault.” That does NOT help. In fact, it just worsens my problem!
My mind has been going back and forth on quitting WW because I’m young and I shouldn’t have to worry about this kind of stuff. And then I rebut myself by saying well you’ll be back there if you gain more weight back! It’s a horrible cycle and I don’t like it. Somehow, WW has lost its appeal for me. I need something to rejuvenate my enthusiasm for the program.

I know this is uber long but I really needed to get this all out. I’m really struggling… and I never thought I would struggle with this. Up until I left for the UK, I was always quite enthused about the program and I loved it. I want it back but I’m finding it difficult to bind myself back in.

Here’s to trying to get my drive back up! *clinks empty Guinness glass*

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