The Lunchtime Epiphany

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Image Credit

Yesterday, while eating my lunch at 4pm, I had a bit of an epiphany.  Some may call it a brain fart and they may be right but let’s not get caught up in the details.  I’ve talked before about knowing how to lose weight, and that it’s not the theory I have trouble with but the practical application.

Contrary to what some psychiatrists think, I also don’t emotional eat.  If am feeling emotional I am more likely to not eat, or have my calories in liquid form.  I have had issues with food and eating for a long time, and the common theme has always been not the volume of food, but the types and time the consumed.  I’m not making excuses, I’m just telling you what my eating habits are.

I have some days where (like yesterday) it will get to 4pm and I won’t have eaten a thing, either through being too busy, being too lazy to make something or just purely not feeling hungry.  This means that my body is more than likely in constant starvation mode, it doesn’t know when it’s going to get fed, so it hangs onto every calorie, fat and sugar that I consume.  Added in is the fact that my food choices are less than desirable and we have the inevitable weight gain.

That’s where my idea for the Clock Diet comes in.  It’s not really a diet, I don’t have a meal plan, or an exercise plan or even any real plan at all.  It’s not a quick fix, hell I don’t know what the hell to call it, so I went with diet.  I’m not going to go into why you need to eat xyz food and it’s benefits, because frankly, you aren’t stupid.  I can bet that 99% of you, like me, already know how to lose weight, you just have trouble with actually putting it into practice.

The only thing you need is an alarm clock.  Most phones, even the basic ones have an alarm function, which means that you can take it with you wherever you go.  The idea behind the Clock Diet is to set an alarm at regular intervals to remind yourself to eat.  We all lead busy lives, with kids, jobs, housework, partners that we sometimes forget about ourselves.  It’s so easy to lose track of time, and before you know it, it’s 4pm and you’re having lunch.

My thought is that with regular reminders, and regular meals, I can help to stave off the negative side effects and begin to feel better about myself.  The regular, healthy food will also of course have the added bonus of feeding my brain, ensuring that I am able to work at the best of my ability and have more energy to spend with Mr 4.

Are you like me and forget to eat? Do you think setting a reminder at regular intervals to eat would help you to manage your health better?

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49 thoughts on “The Lunchtime Epiphany

  1. Sarah@Slapdash Mama

    Good idea! I do emotional eat. SO HARD to stop doing that. Weight loss is the freaking hardest thing in the world. Good luck with the clock diet. I think one of the keys for me is not having snacky chocolatey thingies in the house, otherwise I cannot STOP myself eating them ALL. Moderation is not my middle name…

    Reply
  2. Zanni Louise

    Sometimes, but I find I don’t really need much food during the day as I have a very substantial breakfast. I am kind of leaning the other way if anything, towards fasting. In prehistoric days humans would have fasted then feasted depending on availability of food. Generally we all probably eat more than we need to. Sorry, slightly controversial. x

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      The trouble with us now is that we eat our biggest meal at night, when really we should be eating it for lunch.

      Reply
  3. Julie

    Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) I never forget to eat!! And my kids never let me forget about eating either. Sounds like the clock diet might work for you though!

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      Mr 4 is a grazer and tends to eat small things throughout the day, things that he can get himself. It’s funny that I have no issue with getting him something to eat but then kind of think screw it when it comes to myself.

      Reply
  4. Aroha @ Colours of Sunset

    I hope this helps! I don’t think I have ever forgotten to eat! I eat 5 times a day – breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner. For me it’s choosing the right foods that is often the trouble, but I put in a conscious effort every day. Except for when I too have my brain farts and eat the cake! Good luck! Let us know how you go! x

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      Mine is a double edged sword. I rarely eat, but I make crappy choices when I do, so making sure that I have healthy options to eat regularly will also be one of the things that I implement.

      Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I saw a few people talking about it on twitter. The trouble with not eating for me though is that it doesn’t support a healthy mental health. I know in myself that when the eating gets worse, that the depression is getting worse too. So by eating regularly I am hoping to make positive steps to help bring myself out of the slump that I am in at the moment.

      Reply
  5. Dannie (A Dose of Dannie)

    When i was younger and being busy with my Dance profession ,I ate small things little bits here and there 6 times a day. Mainly Fruit,nuts no meat . At times i did not have time to eat as training was from after school at 4pm and finished by 10pm got home did another hour of school HW went to bed too tired to eat.

    Now days i struggle at times to eat really I could live on coffee all day long and i do. I force my self to eat at times. I am trying to work on it better too.

    I had an eating disorder when young through my training dance schedule so i think that is why i am now like this today.

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I had disordered eating when I was a teen as well and a lot of the thoughts behind it still stick with me today. It’s a hard habit to break.

      Reply
  6. Miss Cinders

    I’m a 4pm lunch person too! I always forget to eat!

    This morning I ate breakfast for the first time in ages, I’m hoping to make it a regular thing.

    MC xo
    #teamIBOT

    Reply
  7. Jody at Six Little Hearts

    Breastfeeding is keeping me hungry at present so I don’t forget to eat. Normally I have a poor appetite though. I am petite so it’s probably just my makeup. I do eat a good breakfast every day and would never skip this meal. I can’t function without it!

    Reply
  8. Zoe Amy

    I think its interesting that you mentioned the “conventional wisdom” of eat less calories = get slimmer.

    More and more research and anecdotal evidence is showing that isn’t the case.

    If anything I think the weight loss industry is selling us a bunch of bogus bullturds and causing people to have unhealthy relationships with their bodies.

    I like your plan. It is saner than most diets!

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      My unhealthy relationship with my body started long before I started calorie counting, hence why this plan is more about eating regularly first and then worrying about everything else later. The trouble with purely calorie counting too is that not all calories are created equal. You could eat a block of chocolate and have your calories done for the day, but you are going to feel hungry and lethargic an hour later. Or you could eat foods that are rich in protein, antioxidants and healthy fats, so while you may appear to be eating more, you are in fact probably eating less calorie wise but feeling better for it. Weight is just a number to me, you can be a healthy weight and have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and a myriad of different health problems because the food you are eating isn’t supporting a healthy body.

      Reply
  9. Pip (bub sweat and tears)

    Ooh really hope this stimulates your metabolism to burn your fuel better. I can totally see how eating more regularly will definitely assist – as will eating nutritious foods. Will be curious to see how you find it 🙂

    Reply
  10. Lisa@RandomActsOfZen

    I”ve found that since I’ve started eating a substantial breakfast, the weight has been dropping off. I was in the bad habit of letting myself get hungry, then eating whatever I could grab, usually chocolate!
    This sounds like a good plan, Tegan x

    Reply
  11. Vanessa

    I hate it when I see people at work who say they’re too busy to eat. Um, no. Eating is compulsory. Work is secondary to such things. I think some people in my office could use a phone reminder to eat…

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I think my biggest issue is just being lazy, sounds strange but it’s true. I just couldn’t be bothered making anything and so don’t eat.

      Reply
  12. Lara @ This Charming Mum

    That’s a pretty cool idea – copyright it and get the book out NOW! I did Weight Watchers for awhile and one thing I learned was that having protein at breakfast really helped (who knew?) stave off cravings and mood swings. I find breakfast a big annoying hassle and I’m often too busy dealing with kids to feed myself, but it doesn’t do me any favours to skip it. I probably need an alarm to get up a bit earlier if nothing else! Once again, I love your honesty and straightforward approach to this fraught topic.

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I did Tony Ferguson for a while when Mr 4 was a baby and having protein was a big issue for them as well. Breakfast is my worst meal because I am not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination so have no desire to make an elaborate (or any kind) breakfast.

      Reply
  13. Josefa @always Josefa

    In its simplicity I think your idea might just be the trick for most of us! I often get to 5pm and realise then that I have only had tow coffees that day!! Then I binge. Then I feel guilty. Horrible cycle. Might try this regular reminder, might just work xx

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      Yep I get caught in the horrid cycle too. It also makes me feel lethargic and tired because the food that I do binge on is carb loaded.

      Reply
  14. Kathy

    A very smart epiphany I reckon – it aligns with the whole ‘eat smaller meals regularly’ theory too and it encourages discipline. Maybe the next thing is setting your alarm to eat certain (good) things at different times of the day – a big boring maybe, but if you mix the variety throughout the day it might not be too bad. Good luck with the new plan. I think my big thing is planning ahead so I make good choices. Some days I’m great, other days I get tired and lazy and the choices aren’t so goo.

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I have that issue as well Kathy, I tend to go for easy over healthy so unless there is something prepared I tend to either not eat or eat junk.

      Reply
  15. joanne

    A clock diet. How brilliant…I sometimes get the kids day of eats confused for my own. I ate a banana, a yoghurt, a kiwi fruit. Oh shit. No, Noah ate that. Not me! An alarm to eat would help overcome this problem. I start my clock diet tomorrow. Thanks for the idea.

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      As cliche as it sounds I am starting Monday. Mr 4 will be home from my parents and I do my grocery shopping on a Friday so at the moment, the fridge doesn’t have a lot of food in it that leads to healthy eating.

      Reply
  16. Grace

    When I’m super super busy or excited I forget to eat.
    But I’m trying really hard to get into the habit of having 5 small meals throughout the day. Sometimes it’s only 4 but I can always feel that my body’s better for it. Having an alarm clock’s a great idea!

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I think for me it will take a lot to get used to because I have been eating one meal a day since I was 14. Old habits die hard.

      Reply
  17. Emma Fahy Davis

    I don’t forget to eat, my problem is that I don’t prioritise eating so I’ll sit and inhale a bag of chips while at the computer rather than take the time to prepare a proper meal and sit and enjoy it. Dinner is really the only proper meal I eat most days and that’s only coz I have to cook for the rest of the family.
    Keep us posted with how your alarm works for you!

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      Eating in front of the computer is one of my issues too. Before I know it, the chip packet is empty and I have no idea where it went!

      Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      I think that I am going to have to make sure that I have healthy foods prepared as well as the making sure to eat regularly as I am prone to just either eat nothing because I couldn’t be bothered or eat crappy food because it’s easy to prepare.

      Reply
  18. Pinky Poinker

    There’s no way I could last until 4:00pm without eating. I’d faint! I can easily skip dinner though. By the time I’ve cooked dinner for the others in a hot kitchen I lose my appetite. Good luck with your very sensible plan Tegan 🙂

    Reply
    1. Tegan Post author

      Thanks! I usually don’t realise just how hungry I am until I eat something and then I realise I am famished.

      Reply
  19. Rachel

    This is EXACTLY Brook’s problem. Being a chef he’s working when everyone else is eating. And he often doesn’t have breaky so when he finishes cooking during his day shift it’s 3.00pm and he is STARVING. So then of course eats way to much and usually goes for someting quick and easy – like hot chips. This happens all over again when he goes back to work for his night shift. He’s starving again when he get’s home at 10.30pm and then empties the fridge – which means he goes to sleep on a full stomach.
    I’m going to get Brook to give this a try – so let me know how you go and we can compare notes 🙂

    Reply
  20. Becc

    I did exactly that and lost 16kgs!
    I was always good at 3 meals a day, but when I went to 6 small meals instead, I just would forget. So I set the calendar on my mobile to remind me when it was morning tea, afternoon tea and supper.
    I still use it to this day and give or take a few kilo’s I have maintained that loss.
    Definitely not a brain fart, it was a major epiphany and I am proof of that 🙂

    Reply
  21. Danya Banya

    Good idea! I think you have to find what works for you – the answer is different for each person. Personally I put on weight when I eat beyond full because I have too much food on my plate and I have a problem leaving the plate “unclean”. Somehow it feels like “waste” to leave half the food on my plate, or I eat without thinking and don’t even realise I’ve eaten too much. Sigh.

    Reply

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