The Fast Food Temptation on the Commute Home

I would happily throw my face at this.

I’m proud of myself.

I’m gonna let that linger for a moment longer and allow myself to sit in the discomfort I feel whenever I acknowledge that I’m proud of myself.

Whew. Let me out. Okay.

The reason I’m proud of myself is because I have a 44-minute commute on my way home from the office. I’m going to visualize that commute, as I pull out of my office parking lot, drive down Main Street and head toward the highway that takes me toward my house. What I’m visualizing is that I only have to take a little left or right turn to venture into bad territory. In that stretch to my front door, I pass (among others I’m going to forget!) in no particular order:

  • McDonald’s (three times!)
  • Dunkin Donuts (three times!)
  • Burger King (twice)
  • White Castle (twice)
  • Raising Cane’s (twice)
  • Starbucks (twice)
  • Skyline (twice)
  • Chipotle (twice)
  • Wendy’s (twice)
  • Penn Station (twice)
  • Popeyes (twice)
  • Arby’s (twice)
  • Subway (twice)
  • Taco Bell
  • Chick-Fil-A
  • Five Guys
  • Firehouse Subs
  • Panera Bread
  • Dickey’s Barbecue
  • Rapid Fired Pizza
  • Long John Silver’s
  • Speedway Gas Station (yes, even this one)

At one time or another, every single one of those, and often (of course) on more than one occasion, has tempted me on my commute back home. Or at least, with Starbucks/Dunkin, it’s usually on the way to work, but there’s been times I’ve been tempted to get that evening White Chocolate Mocha or a thing of the Dunkin munchkins.

Tonight, I was particularly wanting to stuff my face into a greasy burger and the delicious fries of Five Guys, and then I also considered Skyline because it’s Skyline, and then I also considered Starbucks because of that late night craving for some coffee.

Then, I’m like, no, I’m going to be good. I don’t want to ruin what’s been a relatively light day of eating — I had a cinnamon bagel with honey pecan cream cheese and a banana for breakfast, a PB&J and some spicy mango candy for lunch and otherwise, I’ve been sucking down coffee and/or water — by crushing something heavy at night, particularly this late at night.

As I come off the highway onto the final stretch toward my house (which again, is a lengthy stretch through a good number of those fast food establishments with their tantalizing lights), I actually was in the right lane, ready to turn right into Skyline. Instead, I got over into my usual left lane to my house (it’s a left turn off that stretch).

That’s when my head started going: Okay then, jerk, when I get home, I’m going to have that processed, 700-calorie frozen lasagna. While I didn’t save calories, at least I saved money on eating out, right? Or, I’m thinking, maybe I’ll just have an omelet and be light, so I can reserve more calories to knock back a few stress-relieving mango beers.

Folks, this is what my brain does.

I finally settled on a good ol’ bowl of cereal. Yes, sir. I’ve previously written on the blog about the glorious appeal and satisfaction, and rebelliousness, of having cereal for dinner and that’s what I fell back on: Mini Wheats with a heaping bit of my Silk vanilla almondmilk. I kept to the portion of precisely 25 biscuits (what am I, a dog? Yes). And I’m good! It didn’t “fill me up” in the sense of a freakin’ Five Guys burger or a Skyline three-way chili would have, but that’s sort of the point of trying to eat good (and not spend frivolously). As I’ve also written about on here, one of my “secrets” to cutting fat is to lean into the discomfort of being mildly hungry instead of always overdoing it. I’d rather be mildly hungry than to be feeling the pangs of regret and shame from overdoing it.

So, yeah, I’m proud of myself! I could, of course, close off this blog post and go eat something bad, or grab those beers now, or whatever else. But nah. I’m empowered now, gosh darnit! I’m done for the night! No more food, only that late night cup of coffee I used to power through this blog and some more water.

The main method that helps, I think, avoid the temptation on that commute is my brain mush. I’ve had a long day of writing and looking at a screen, so on the drive home, my overriding desire to get home and veg out out overrides my stomach’s desire to pig-out.

What method(s) do you use to avoid fast food temptation?

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