Early to Bed, Early to Rise

On Tuesday night I stayed up way too late trying to find some new recipes, finding coupons, meal planning and making my grocery list.  Last night I was up too late also.

Tuesday night I found myself hungry around 9pm

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Luna Bar & an Apple

Last night I found myself hungry around 9pm

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M&M’s and a Quaker Granola Bar

We all have our diet down falls.  Mine was/is late night snacking.  Now, there is nothing wrong with having a little snack after dinner but when it begins to sabotage your healthy eating plan, it can become an issue.

When Jeremy was working nights right after I had Aidan, I found myself staying up until 12-1am.  I couldn’t go to bed because because,  1. I was worried about him,  2. I was lonely and 3. It was the only time I had to myself to read, watch T.V., chat with friends, and eat in peace.  I found myself eating more late at night than I did all day.  Pringles, Diet Cokes, snack cakes, you name it.  Anything salty, sweet, salty & sweet.  I was using food to soothe myself late at night when the loneliness was too much.

In Jan of 2010 when I started Weight Watchers,  I ate really good all day, and then when  I would be up late, I found myself fighting the Late Night Snack Monster.  One of the things I did while I was on the diet was make excuses for myself.  I deserve this bag of Goldfish, I am exhausted, I have been doing so good, I just need to have this and then I will be extra good tomorrow.  Jeremy had gone back to the night shift and subconsciously I was looking for a way to soothe my loneliness and stress again.

When I decided to lose the weight, I had a resolve that I had never had before.  One of the things that I did was make a list called “Solutions For My Excuses.” I wrote the excuse or problem;  ex. Not Exercising or Late Night Snacking.  And then underneath it I would brain storm solutions.

Excuse/Problem: Late Night Snacking

Solution:  “MAKE myself go to bed early.”

This will  be beneficial for two reasons:

  1. If I am in bed asleep, I can’t be in the kitchen eating.
  2. I read that being sleep deprived is one of the main culprits behind unhealthy cravings.  If I get more sleep, maybe I won’t be so hungry in the afternoon and at night.”

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I started putting the boys to bed by 8pm and I was in bed by 9pm.  I wasn’t necessarily asleep, but I was on my way.  I wasn’t going to get up and eat if my teeth were brushed, I wasn’t going to get out of my comfortable bed and put down my gossip magazine to eat.  Over time this became easy for me.  I began looking forward to going to bed early and began counting the hours until my own bedtime.  I began getting up very early in order to have some time to myself, instead of staying up very late.  Now I get up at 5am and I am in bed as soon as I can get there.  Sometimes, I am in bed before Jeremy even gets home.

This brings me to the last two nights of late night snacking.  Even though I was legitimately hungry, I do get hungry every 2-3 hours, I wouldn’t have been if I was asleep.  Those snacks didn’t send me over what I try to keep my daily calorie intake at. I was legitimately hungry and I wasn’t emotionally eating.  However, it was a good reminder of  those days long ago and of why I changed my sleeping habits to the old saying, “Early to Bed Early to Rise”

You may also enjoy: WebMD – How sleep deprivation affects you weight.

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