Surviving a Fair in Maine: Going Sugar Free

Yesterday was my fifth day “sugar free”. I had a great 7 mile run in the morning, a quick meditation session, and did yoga before I went to bed. Meanwhile, the afternoon was spent taking my 3 and 5 year old girls to the fair in Topsham, Maine.

 

Fair Time in Maine

Obviously, going to the fair is a challenge for anybody trying to eat healthy. My usual fair foods of choice would be mini-donuts, kettle corn, and ice-cream. Do you think those have sugar in them?

So, the going to the fair process needed to be addressed with a plan in mind. I made sure to eat before I left the house (apples, nuts, bread), drink plenty of water or herbal tea throughout the day, and focus on having fun with the kids. We did all of the kiddie-rides first (merry-go-round, kids cars, big jumpy slide, tea-cup bears, and ferris wheel). The girls then played darts to win a prize. Feeding them was easy since I don’t impose my eating restrictions on them to a great degree (basically, they do not get soda, limited juice to a few times/ week, and no junk food in the house). But what do I eat at the fair?

Luckily I found a baked potato stand (Really!?) and I ordered the potato with sour cream and broccoli. I thought he lady felt bad for me; she frowned at the potato and she wanted to make sure I didn’t want some delicious (Velveta?) cheese sauce on the potato. Unfortunately, the broccoli was cooked down to an unattractive green-gray mush, but some of it was edible. While I was waiting for the kids’ dinner, a man asked me what in the world I was eating. I felt apologetic and sort of sorry for myself while I told him it was just a baked potato. We watched the karokee competition for awhile and then visited the animals: cows, pigs (is there anything cuter then a piglet that is only 10 days old?), ducklings, rabbits, baby chicks, and an alpaca named curly. The girls wanted ice-cream on the way out, and the pregnant lady behind the counter, after serving up the girls choices, asked me, “don’t you want some ice cream too?”.

So, I survived the fair remaining sugar free. Afterwards we drove out to our summer home (here in Maine, everybody calls them “camps”) and their was more temptation on the way. Dairy Queen had a special $0.79 for a blizzard (must…drive….by) and then the biggest temptation, the local home-made frozen custard stand. The sign out front said “Just made: Moose Tracks”.

As my mouth watered and I drove on by, I thought back to the conversation I had earlier in the day with my yoga teacher. Julie was very encouraging and supportive, and yet there is still this sort of personal ambiguity of whether or not I need to remain sugar-free, will I turn into a martyr, etc. She offered the sage advice of perhaps going for 21 days sugar free, and then thinking about moderating the sugar intake, or perhaps doing honey or cane sugar only. We spoke about controlling the environment and simply not having the foods available, which is an old weight loss trick that works. Also, we chatted about how to get enough food and calories in without the sugar-fat foods to maintain my weight. I think it will mean eating frequently, and focusing more on protein and fats.

This morning hubby said, “So, no more mochas for you…”. I felt a bit sorry for myself for a minute and sighed. In all honesty, I felt angry that he would say that first thing in the cool morning when nothing could be more delicious, soothing, or inviting then a warm quadruple mocha. He is usually quite supportive of my endeavors, so I know he was just making conversation and that an attitude of love for myself and others will get me through any mocha withdrawal symptoms.

As part of the yogic lifestyle, one has to notice, be aware… so if do moderate sugar, how do I feel before, during, and after eating the sugary-treat? If I fell angry about not having a usual treat, what is that about on a deeper spiritual level? When I get passed the 21 days, I think I will try and moderate to a treat once in awhile (perhaps no more then one/ week), though I will focus on my awareness before, during, and after.

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