Even though I haven't reverted back to my pre-diet/lifestyle change ways (nearly six years of no drive-thrus and no fast food, go me!), I have slowly let other things become more of the norm instead of the exception over the last year or so. Where I used to only have frozen yogurt once a week, and with no toppings, having it more often AND with the addition of candy toppings became routine. Where I used to have a big salad as my dinner most nights, that fell off my radar and eating less vegetables became normal. Where I used to watch my bread intake, I stopped thinking twice about eating sandwiches or bagels. Somewhere along the line I realized I wasn't drinking water on a daily basis like I used to. I could go on, but you get the picture. I wasn't exactly going crazy, but I wasn't doing what I knew would work for me in terms of keeping myself at the size that I liked.
So I went back to the basics. I looked back in my blog archives to remind myself what I used to eat, and I made some changes. Instead of my bagel with cream cheese, half a cinnamon twist and 1.5 pieces of bacon after running on Saturday morning, I went back to having a multigrain bagel with spinach, egg and feta. Instead of splitting a pesto chicken pizza with Jeff, I went back to my Tejas Blue sandwich (turkey, spinach, avocado and hot sauce) - and I eat it open-face, so I'm having less bread. No splitting a cookie after. Instead of making a nonfat latte every day, I went back to drinking a ton of water and treat myself to a latte every once in a while. I could go on, but you get the picture.
Somewhere along the line I realized that I wasn't feeling true hunger most of the time before I ate. And it's not like I only have limited opportunities to eat - my schedule is pretty open. So I started waiting to eat until I was really hungry. Some mornings, black coffee holds me until 10:00 am or even closer to 11:00 am before I'm hungry enough for my yogurt/fruit/granola breakfast. On those days, I don't bother with eating lunch...I might have a quarter cup of raw almonds, or some fruit, but other than that, I'm good until dinner. And I started scaling way back with dinner - I've been having a turkey burger (no bun), some avocado or guacamole, and salad most evenings.
For me, it's becoming aware of my hunger cues, of what I'm choosing to put in my mouth, and what happens when I make less-than stellar choices. I wouldn't say I'm dieting, but I am bringing the basics back to maintenance instead of treating way too many days as a party. I have to remember that I'm the only thing standing between my new self and the Shelley of yore - she was a good person, but I don't care to become that size again...and if I'm not careful, all the "unbasic" way that I was eating will catch up to me...and it won't be pretty.