I empathize with you, OP. Throughout my teen years and the majority of my twenties, I could eat virtually whatever I wanted and I never gained weight. At 5’8 and 110lbs I was actually underweight, but I never dieted, it was just the size I had always been. Even throughout my disgusting college years of eating nothing but cheese pizza, beer, peanut butter, and mac ‘n cheese – I stayed that same weight.
Now at 28 I’m noticing that, while I’m still slim (I hover just below 120 now), what I eat makes an impact. I’ve really had to rein it in a bit over the last couple of years. I’m well aware that at my height I would be fine to gain more weight, but I don’t want it to spiral out of control. And more than anything, I just really don’t want to have to buy a whole new wardrobe. So to answer your questions…
1) What kinds of foods you eat in a typical day?
Breakfast: smoothie (recipe: 1/2 frozen banana, 3/4 cup dark chocolate almond milk, 1/2 cup 0% greek yogurt, 2 tbsp PB2 powdered peanut butter, handful of ice) or Special K Protein Cereal w/ skim milk.
Lunch: it differs; sometimes dinner leftovers, sometimes a multigrain english muffin with almond butter, sometimes a Sweet Earth frozen veggie burrito.
Dinner: I cook 4-5 nights per week. I’m pescetarian (vegetarian + fish), so vegetable stir-fries, baked fish, vegetable pastas, quinoa or brown rice casseroles, or vegetarian tacos are in heavy rotation. On the nights that I don’t cook, it’s usually because I’m working late (in which case I’ll just find something in the fridge like my lunch options above), I’m going out to eat with my husband, or we’re visiting a friend or family member for dinner.
Snacks: Think Thin Lean Protein & Fiber bars (I LOVE these), Kind sweet & salty nut bars (good “treat”), carrots, fruit, smaller versions of my breakfast smoothie (or versions with just fruit and greek yogurt).
2) Do you only eat a “normal” meal times, or do you snack in between?
I definitely snack in between.
3) Do you eat all 3 meals or do you sometimes skip meals here or there? (I know when I was smaller I rarely ate breakfast)
Sometimes my day more closely resembles 6 small meals/large snacks, but I wouldn’t say I ever completely skip a meal – especially breakfast.
4) How often do you “indulge,” be it with sweet things, salty things, other junk food, etc.?
At home, almost never. I don’t keep junk food or sweets in the house unless we’re entertaining. But my husband and I do love to go out to eat and I don’t restrict myself when we do (well, within reason – it’s not like I’m ordering fettucini alfredo every time, either). My big indulgence is wine, and we do keep that in the house – but one of my favorite wines (Argyle Pinot Noir) is only 60 calories for a 5oz glass, and I’m usually more than happy with just having 2 glasses.
5) Do you exercise? What kind and how often?
Yes. I do about 30 minutes of cardio (elliptical) roughly 4 times a week. In the summer I get some supplemental exercise from going for bike rides and playing golf with my husband, both of which we do roughly once a week. In the winter I try to kick up my indoor workout routine to make up for the loss of those activities.
6) And the last one that I tend to struggle with: Do you only eat when you feel physically hungry?
I’m definitely guilty of “boredom eating,” but not keeping snack food in the house has helped immensely with that. I also find that I need to make sure to keep myself occupied! If I’m just sitting here doodling around on my computer (oh, hmmm, like right now?), I predictably get the urge to snack. So after I write this post, I’m probably going to go do some yard work and I’ll probably forget all about wanting a snack. 😉