Grocery shopping and fast food

It is no big secret – I am not (yet!) a fan of grocery shopping. That said, up until the past few weeks, I had done well in the grocery shopping department. Every Sunday after work, I would immediately head to the bank, make my weekly deposit, and then head on over to Sprout’s Farmers Market. I even had a list – organic bananas, sweet snap peas, dark chocolate covered almonds, Luna protein bars, organic peanut butter, plums, apples, angel hair pasta, a jar of arribata sauce, meatballs, coconut milk, honey graham cereal, yogurt, and blueberries – or some combination of these items. Granted, the grocery shopping list could use some variety and be expanded. BUT, but, but! You have to remember that this is the grocery list of a not-too-long-ago eat-three-fast-food-meals-a-day kind-of girl. It’s a work in progress.

Then I decided to see how long I could go without going grocery shopping to “use what I had in the house” rather than spend money on groceries. I was attempting to save a few dollars and see if I would be able to make things stretch. NOT a good idea. As my at-home supplies began to dwindle, my craving for fast food ramped up. I held off for three days, and then found myself pulling up to the drive-through at Arby’s. At 10:35 at night. And I spent $12 on a “small” number 19 combo with a value-sized side of mozzarella sticks AND jalapeno poppers. I ate it all. In my bedroom, by myself, behind a locked door. That was Wednesday night.

Now, if I had gone grocery shopping, I know I wouldn’t have had that fast-food craving for three days. I would have nixed the craving by eating a piece of fruit or two, a protein bar, or some dark chocolate covered almonds.

Well, knowing and DOING are two very different things. With the weekend approaching, I figured I could make it through with what I had on-hand. And I did. I was missing out on my fruits and sweet snap peas, but I made it through without issue. What I didn’t do was go grocery shopping on Sunday. You would THINK I would have learned my lesson from last week; however, I didn’t have a grocery list prepared and with Brian coming down on Friday I knew that this shopping trip would need to be different – that I would need to stop at a big box store for some household necessities as well as Sprouts. And maybe it’s me being new to the area, but I was honestly intimidated. Yup, I was intimidated of going shopping at a new-to-me Wal-Mart. So, I didn’t. Still haven’t. Blargh.

So tonight, I once again found myself pulling up to the Arby’s drive-through. At $8.50, I didn’t spend as much this time around, but I was kicking myself for not manning up, making a list and heading out into the world to pick up my weekly supplies. Lesson learned from today? HONOR MY SCHEDULE and do things when I am suppose to. There is a reason I make a list one day and go shopping the next (so I only pick up what I need and will use for the week and so that I stay within my budget).

I also need to make my grocery shopping more interesting by trying new foods and perhaps even COOKING a meal or two. I think by adding variety – without overwhelming myself with recipes having tons of ingredients – AND honoring my schedule will actually have me looking forward to picking up groceries and cooking for the week.

And I share this with you because learning to respect time, intelligently grocery shop, and cook meals is a learning process. I’m not beating myself up over my trips to Arby’s. (Although their “Good Mood Food” tag line irks me to no end! Obviously, the company KNOWS that their food is addicting and temporarily elevates a person’s mood for a short period of time before crashing. And now they’re getting customers to associate good moods with Arby’s food. Somebody stop them, PLEASE!) What I am doing is understanding why those trips happened in the first place and how I can prevent myself from going that route in the future.

How many meals a week do you cook at home?

About Sara

Sara Hefty (B.B.A. and H.H.C.) teaches workaholic women how to have it all and flourish without burning out, binging or being spiteful. As an expert in transformational health coaching, she holds women accountable for letting go of unwanted weight, being brilliantly nourished, grounded in truth and feeling confident, happy and playful every single day.

As a woman with her own weight loss story, wide-ranging family heritage of cancer, and a graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, Sara’s appreciation for convenient nutrient-dense food, personal growth, inspiring design, financial responsibility, and social entrepreneurship led to her “Pursuit of Ownership: Health, Home, and Legacy” model of heart-on-fire-hot empowered living.

Sara is the founder of PROJECT LUX and She currently lives in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, with her husband Brian and hound-dog Raja.