I have a confession – I overate at lunch on Friday.
It’s not something I do often, and afterward, I remembered why. Here are my 3 biggest reasons for disliking overeating.
Back in Old Patterns
I used to overeat all the time, although I didn’t usually recognize it, since I was in the mindless eating phase. I was also very out of touch with my body, so it was much harder to tell if I was eating too much.
I don’t enjoy going back into those old patterns of not recognizing my hunger and fullness cues. Although in this case, if I’m being honest, I knew I was overeating and did it anyway.
Not that choosing to overeat is bad, per se, but I did it without thinking much about the consequences. And that’s not a pattern I want to repeat.
This happened when I went out to eat at a restaurant serving Columbian street food. I got chorizo and vegetable skewers, though they were quite heavy on the meat, and light on the veggies. (This isn’t an exact photo, but it gives you a good idea.)
It was very good, which was part of the problem. I had a feeling it wouldn’t be as good if heated up again, and I wanted to enjoy it.
Also, I’d parked a ways off, and it was an insanely windy day. I didn’t feel like carrying a takeout bag and having to hold onto it for dear life.
Nor did I want to just leave the food. I’m usually not too bad about the “waste” issue, but it was the amount of meat that got to me. I kept thinking that this animal gave its life for me to eat, so I should honor it and eat everything.
In reality, I should have just taken it home and risked the wind and figured out a good way to re-heat it, but I didn’t. I ate it.
Postpones Future Eating
This brings me to my next complaint.
Since I didn’t want to stay stuck in my old patterns, I decided to wait to eat again until I was actually hungry. But that took longer than usual, and I didn’t like it.
Part of the reason I prefer small meals is because it means I can eat a little more regularly, with meals and snacks. When I eat too much, though, I have to postpone those times. It makes me cranky to see my normal meal or snack time come and go, while I’m still digesting.
Then I get this weird fear about not getting hungry again. I know some people are afraid of being hungry to begin with, but for me, I’m more afraid of the opposite, since I enjoy food more when I’m hungry for it.
Of course, the rational part of me knows I will get hungry, it will just take a while. I guess I need to practice my patience on this front.
So finally, I did get hungry, but I didn’t want to overeat again. To be on the safe side, I had a light dinner and called it good, since it seemed like enough.
And at the time it was enough, but then I woke up around 3 a.m. feeling hungry. Sigh.
That’s the other part I don’t like about overeating. It makes it harder for me to gauge my hunger and fullness levels the next time I eat, and that causes problems.
If I overeat again, then I often don’t sleep well because I’m too uncomfortable and my stomach is working too hard.
On the flip side, I still don’t sleep well if I don’t eat enough – it’s a very fine line. (It doesn’t help that I was sleeping poorly to begin with due to worrying about kitty health, so my brain would have used any excuse to wake up.)
Much as I don’t like overeating, occasionally it’s useful, because it reminds me of these lessons. Ideally I wouldn’t need the reminders, but hey, I’m only human.
So now that this is fresh in my mind, I’m less likely to do it again.
It doesn’t mean I won’t misjudge other situations, but at least I can hopefully do better on the overeating front. At least, I hope so, since I’m going out for birthday gelato tomorrow – we’ll see how I do.