Last night Jerry and I grabbed a Chik-fi-A sandwich as we rushed to hear our daughter sing. We’ve eaten out more than I’m used to. A quick trip through a drive-through when life has us panting with its busyness, a few lingering experiences in a nicer restaurant.
There was a summer when I was still fighting to shed the pounds when life was very different. The work ran dry. I didn’t share much about it here, but I struggled greatly. I’d found this new, healthy lifestyle that included a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables but was unable to buy them. We spent most of that summer eating out of our freezer or pantry and from the food given to us by a couple of friends who have food bank ministries. It was a paradox. Intense gratitude for the provision mixed with anger about our situation. How was I supposed to keep losing weight with the high calorie foods coming our way and without the ability to buy fresh food to balance it?
Finances profoundly affect health and weight loss/maintenance. My journey into crushing financial struggle gives me more compassion for those in America who fight poverty. While there are those in our country who go hungry, there are also resources for food. There’s a point above having nothing where you exist on whatever comes your way. The cost effective food tends to be high in calories–like pasta and rice–and the options from food banks are often the same.
On the flip side, the ability to eat out has challenged me as well. It feels like a treat, and I rarely make low-calorie choices. It’s given me more compassion for those of you who struggle with weight loss from this perspective–whether your busy life means you order out/eat out a lot, or your ability for finer dining subjects you to all of those amazing, high calorie sauces, drinks, and desserts.
Money–on both ends of the spectrum–affects our eating habits. My goal is to be intentional about noticing the unique challenges my financial situation has on my health/maintenance goals and to respond to those challenges!
How about you? Do finances affect your health/weight loss journey? Is there something specific in the abundance or lack thereof that is undermining your goals?
Until Next Time,
PS After that summer of crying out to the Lord my husband ended up with a new job at Door to Door Organics. Not only do we now get fresh ORGANIC fruits and vegetables at a reduced price, but Jerry is sometimes given extras. Today my home overflows with fresh produce. Even on the weeks when money is tight, my fresh foods come like clock work. Isn’t that just like our God?
Absolutely, YES!! Before Ron had this amazing job we were on food stamps and I- despite my husband’s objections- ate the cheapest stuff that no one else would miss so that the rest of my family could eat decently. Needless to say, I wasn’t eating good food and that combined with constant stress and crushing depression resulted in me being obese. Now that Ron has this blessing of a job we are able to eat out once, sometimes twice, a week. It’s hard to look at some of the choices and tell myself “this isn’t only a once in a great while thing anymore. If I eat that every week, I’m going to kill myself- literally”. So I try to balance it out and eat better at restaurants and at home. Except for last weekend. The kids all did super well during the first quarter of school- Gloriana even made honor roll, so we all got desserts and Ron and I split the brownie sundae at Applebee’s. It wasn’t even a little healthy, but it was divine 🙂
You totally get this post! I’m glad things have eased for you now. I understand how easy it is to gain weight when the world is suffocating you with its difficulties. And yes, a brownie sundae sounds divine! Thanks for chiming in! Always good to connect.
I know last night we went to rib crib all you can eat ribs with some friends. No we shared a medium order of the wings and fries and water. Then we shared a peach cobbler Alamo .It stressed me out in my heart because when we were pulling in the restaurant ,I commented to Carolyn that I hate eating out on a night that I watch my calorie intake. I blew it last night. Then today I was suppose to watch my calorie intake and we went up to the senior center for thanksgiving dinner. I helped serve and the guy I worked with gave me extra for helping out. I did not eat it all but I sure felt guilty for what I did eat. I abstained from the desserts. Tonight we had surviving the holidays grief share group. There were all kinds of snacks, I had a cracker with a piece of turkey and cheese. I felt guilty. You know Thanksgiving is coming and I am dreading the urge to overeat. It comes down to choices for me. I lost 50 pounds, glory to God and I do not want to gain it back. I was down to 192 I now weighed in this morning at 197.6. Holiday eating along with stress from losing my daughter and the holidays without her. I am entitled to overeat. Not…… I lost this weight with God’s help and to his glory, that I would be healthier for my family and myself and more effective witness for Christ. Feeling better about myself transfers to those I am witnessing and engaging daily, I have some choices to make and some exercising to do. I want to stay the course. It seems to me that when I eat out I tend to eat it all because the food is so expensive. One reason we always share a plate. That and the serving given at most places is always more that two people can eat,so we just split a meal. We had a restaurant charge us for a extra plate the other night. It bothered me because most do not charge to give you a extra plate. I sucked it up and took the restaurant off our list of restaurants. No one in the restaurant business wants to help you lose weight and maintain your health. At least in Oklahoma it seems. So on my prayer list is to pray for all you good folks going into the holidays trying to say fit so you don’t have to make another stupid new years resolution of losing all those extra pounds. Holidays are stressful exspecially if you have lost someone . I will lean unto the Lord and take his yoke. I will get through to the glory of God.
PS thank you for the job for Jerry and the extra verge’s you send along and for helping us to say healthy. Also bless this kind woman (Paula) for ministering to and challenging us to stay healthy.
Much love Tom
Ah, Tom! I love your heart. Thank you for your sweet prayers and consistent friendship. Having lost two people dear to me in the last 6 months or so, I can attest that grief makes it harder to stay focused on healthy eating–and while I am grieving I know that your loss is so much more traumatic and unexpected. I can’t imagine losing a child. Be patient with yourself. Let go of the guilt. Here’s what I believe. Guilt is an overwhelming disappointment with self. You feel almost helpless to change when guilt kicks. Conviction is different. When conviction comes the Lord is in it and there’s a sense of hope, that HE is working to empower you to change. Praying that you’ll feel empowered and that the guilt won’t creep in to defeat. But be kind to yourself in this process, ok? Praying for you, too!
paula we have been traveling and our Internet has been sporadic. While I have the chance I wanted to share with you. I read your post the other day about your finances and life’s bumps and bruises. I cannot tell you how humbled and touched I was by your honest and open heart. The fact that your are so thankful for the small things in you and Jerry’s life made me smile. Life can be what we make it. I want preach a sermon you already have. It is one all of us could hear over and over. God is good all the time. How we cannot see that every breath we take comes from him. Thank you for your kindness and for caring so much. I pray your Thanksgiving day with family was a wonderful day.
Be blessed Always Paula and Jerry
Sadly, losing weight has very much affected my finances. I’m still playing financial “catch-up” after having to pay “out-of-pocket” for the doctor, dietician and counselor at the bariatric clinic, as well as for my Optifast products. Though I was overweight for years and had a plethora of health issues that my health insurance regularly paid for, they didn’t pay a dime toward help for losing weight. At least after all of my years of attempting to get healthy, this worked and I don’t regret the debt I’m in to be 98 pounds lighter.
I completely agree with you that eating healthily is quite expensive and I am rather spoiled by loving fresh and not frozen or canned foods. However, I have to find a balance that serves me financially.
After the holiday’s are over, my new goal is to become more financially healthy. I’m going to be doing some spending fasts, getting rid of extra credit cards, and really making a solid go at getting out of debt. 🙂
It is so frustrating to me that insurance will pay thousands for the resulting health issues, but nothing toward preventative care or weight loss . . . I’m impressed with you choosing to become more financially healthy. I became quite creative when I was on spending fasts. It’s amazing what becomes a decent meal that I wouldn’t have known how to put together had I been able to go to the grocery store.
I’m really impressed that you are taking your life back! You are an inspiration to me!
Aw, thank you, Paula! I wish I would have taken my life back sooner, but better late than never! 🙂
I hope to make a game of the spending fasts. I’m going to begin with doing one for a week then expand from there. My biggest temptation is shopping with friends. I never seem to be able to just look when I go to Target or craft stores–and don’t let me near TJ Maxx!!
Have a lovely weekend! 🙂
When I was at home and money was tight I think it was easier to eat better. I’d walk to markets to buy my fruit and veg or grow my own and my shopping basket didn’t contain so many treats. Now I’m working again time is the enemy and it’s hard to cook from scratch or resist the takeaway meals when I’m tired. I wish there was more of a balance but I suppose we can’t always get what we want.
I hear you. When I feel overwhelmed and tired I tend to drop the important things, like eating well. I just don’t have the energy to figure it out. I also too often drop my walking routine. I’m impressed that you don’t! Honestly, when money is tight it is probably easier to be healthy if time is also more open. But when money is worse than tight, then you eat whatever is available . . .
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