Ah, Spring Break. The time of year when school is closed for a glorious 10 days and I have the delightful privilege of entertaining my two young boys without driving me and my family crazy.
We decided that in lieu of spending thousands of dollars on the usual kid-centric vacation (i.e. Disneyland, Atlantis or Universal Studios) we would put that money toward fixing up our beach house. The windows needed to be replaced, our deck had seen better days, our fence was rotting away and the interior of the house was in dire need of new paint job.
Being the complete control freak that I am, I was determined to source all the materials myself and buy the best quality materials at the lowest possible prices. This decision ended up saving me almost $2K, however nearly drove me bonkers and took me WAY off the I Love FOOD diet.
It’s a well know fact that FRESH food is hard to find along the myriad fast food eateries that line the highway. Most of what you will find at the local fast food joint is over-processed franken-foods that clearly do not qualify as F-O-O-D on the I Love FOOD Diet (please see my post What is FOOD? for further explanation.)
Running between the hardware store, the lumbar yard, the stone center, Lowes and 2 different Home Depots left me tired, cranky and hungry. I had no time to go home and prepare a healthy meal and no time to sit down at a proper restaurant.
I did what I would strongly recommend you all NOT to do. I did not plan in advance and ended up indulging on gas station junk food.
I knew that I would be schlepping from one home improvement store to another, my husband volunteered to stay home with kids. As I was sans enfants, I was free to start my expedition first thing in the morning. The first mistake of the day was that I skipped breakfast. My usual breakfast of 2 organic eggs and some protein was replaced with a bottle of Diet Coke.
I had a meeting with our contractor at noon and wanted to get all my ducks in a row, before then. I did not have the time nor inclination to cook breakfast for myself and just ran out the door with my bottle of soda in hand.
My 11:00 am, I was famished. I stopped by the grocery store to pick up a few things on my way home and was accosted by the most delicious smelling fried chicken. I reasoned that I would buy a few pieces to offer the contractor. On the way to the house, the aroma wafting from my bucket of poultry was too irresistible to resist. I pulled over to the side of the road and devoured 3 chicken wings and 1 thigh….Sigh.
As I immediately regretted my carnivorous consumption of the carb and fat laden poultry, I vowed to eat properly the rest of the day. I skipped lunch as I already inhaled it in the car and proceeded to meet with the contractor, take measurements, visit a few more home improvement centers and scheduled several deliveries. By evening, I was spent.
I scanned the roadside restaurants searching for something to eat. I decided that I would try and tough it out and wait till I got back into the city to eat. I needed to refill my tank so I stopped by a roadside gas station. Upon entering the greasy smelling gas/convenience store, I was welcomed by a large grey cat. Red flag! The unusually hairy and questionably clean attendant did not strike me as a pet enthusiast. The only other reason to have a cat in such an establishment would be to ward off rodents!
I scanned the shelves looking for some sort of healthy snack and finally found a dusty old bag of mixed nuts. Nuts are a great source of protein and are naturally low carb. As I double checked that the bag was still hermetically sealed, I bought them plus another Diet Coke and quickly hightailed it out of there.
Now although nuts are indeed a great low carb snack, when they are honey roasted, and salted, the situation changes. As I was voraciously munching on my bag of nuts, I neglected to notice that this bag has 5 servings. So the 12 grams of carbs and the 160 calories that I thought I was eating was actually 60 grams of carbs and 800 calories, not to mention that copious amount of sodium that this bag contained.
By the time I got home, I was bloated, tired and slightly nauseous. I had not eaten anything remotely healthy all day and was definitely suffering. I ate some leftovers and crawled into bed.
The next morning… well lets just say, the scale was NOT kind to me. Even though I did not eat that much the previous day, the quality of the food was less than stellar.
The next time you are going to be on the road, don’t do what I did. Do yourself a favor and plan your meals ahead.
Chow for now.