The Challenge

I decided to join in on the fun of the Brown Bag Challenge. For those of you who don’t know, it’s a task sponsored by Healthy Eats, and the specifications are:

The challenge:

  • Bring your lunch to work each weekday for the month of September (Thursday, 9/1-Friday, 9/30).
  • A Healthy Eats editor will blog several times per week about the challenge. We’ll offer recipes, tips, and inspiration to help with the struggles of packing a lunch.
  • Each Tuesday, we’ll post on Healthy Eats with a roundup of links from other bloggers participating in the challenge. If you’d like to be included in the round-up, links are due by 5 pm ET each Monday.

Well, as far as the challenge goes, I already pack my lunch every day, and have ever since my seventh grade year. This is partly because I boycotted the school cafeteria for not listening to the student’s (ok, maybe just my) demands for healthier options, and more-so in the last few years, because that way I could eat my “safe foods,” and have an excuse to never order out with my co-workers.

Since I am pretty experienced in the brown-bag arena, I figured I would add my own little twist, or at least something more beneficial to my personal struggle.

Now this probably sounds pretty simple, but my task is to NOT pack the same exact thing every day.

In the past two weeks I have eaten over a dozen salads with hummus, some form of Popchip or Whole Wheat Crackers, a Clif Mojo Bar, a piece of fruit, and a greek yogurt, for my midday meal. Of course I love all these things, but I have had several inquiries from my students as to why I never eat anything but lettuce.

Well, that is a great question! I do love salad, but is it necessary to have one EVERYDAY? Probably not. So, since today is Thursday, starting Monday (September, 12th) I am going to pack at least two lunches next week that are NOT salads. Maybe the following week I will go for three…and then four…and hopefully then I will be eating a variety of meals that only include salad when I really feel like it.

At this time its pretty difficult to decipher if a huge Tupperware full of lettuce is what my stomach actually wants, or if it is just a comfortable thing to throw in my bag.

Since I have attempted to eliminate calorie counting, I find myself reverting back to some old habits, like maintaining a very small list of foods in my grocery cart, measuring more obsessively, and treadmill sessions that are a bit more intense than necessary for my body’s current state. In my mind this signals that ED is trying everything possible to hold onto his hold over me.  Sorry buddy, not happening.

With the colder days, soup sounds like a very reasonable addition to lunch…maybe packing myself dinner leftovers rather than sending them with Ryan all the time…or if I wanted to get REALLY crazy, maybe I would even pack one of those Kashi frozen meals I spoke of this morning!

There are a ton of possibilities, and I have shared them with you all in my older post “Breaking the Brown Bag Blues,” so why not implement my own suggestions for myself? Fear is all that is holding me back, and from what I told you all in my previous entry, why not take a little baby step and change-up two lunches next week? How hard can it be and what is the worst that could happen?

Maybe even you could send some advice my way!? I saw some delicious looking things on Jen’s WIAW link-up!


10 thoughts on “The Challenge

  1. Since I always brown bag, I am anxious to get some new ideas for a healthy lunch. Salad is not one of my favorite dishes, but I love fresh, cut up veggies and take them every day to snack on during my shift. Wraps are a choice sometimes, as well as a goood home-made soup. More suggestions please, Thanks CJ

  2. I take my lunch everyday. I guess I could go to the cafeteria, but I’m afraid of lunch ladies, and lunch is too short to spend time fighting the crowds in the cafeteria. I also take the same food everyday. I’m intrigued to see what kind of stuff you end up eating!*

  3. My friends always ask if I ever eat anything but lettuce 🙂 You are so right, keeping the small grocery list and only eaing salad is just the eating disorder. Its so easy for me to get trapped into weird OCD things like that as a way to control things. Ill have to give this challenge a try as well just to challenge myself (and save some money!!) I so ready for some awesome new lunch ideas too!!

  4. Do you usually eat that combined for lunch or spread it apart during afternoon? I’m combo queen and worried I definitely overdo things.

      • I wish I felt hunger. CJ, I am really worried, cause my doctor (just a random doctor) said 2 lbs/week…insane…I don’t do any exercise (excuses and depression i feel). I just sit ALL the time. Gaining 2 lbs per week, no exercise? How many cals do u have to take it? Can I ask your bmi, or tell you mine? Are you triggered easily by that or not (i don’t want to trigger you). Email me if you can. I understand if I am a pest though.

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