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Guest Post: Sue’s Holiday Buffet Thought Process

Sue Boyles is an alumna of the Big Change Program, and a plant-powered dynamo in her own right.

Her before-and-after-and-after photos (below) capture not just the weight loss part of her journey, but the real, meaningful changes have all occurred in Sue's Inner Game.

Here's a post she shared with her Big Change cohort this morning. It was so smart and empowering and inspiring, I got permission from Sue to share it with you. 

I was thinking today about pressures (external and internal) we put on ourselves at functions, gatherings, etc. It was triggered by an article in AARP about what to choose at a holiday party buffet.

The last party we went to the ONLY thing on the table, with the exception of the dish I brought, that was vegan (not even Whole Food, Plant-Based was Doritos. Yes, they didn't even have a veggie tray.

I imagined a conversation over the buffet table at the family Christmas Party (this is all in my head, by the way…) Here's how it goes:

Them: “Aren't you eating anything?”

Me: “No thanks – not for me.”

Them: “Come on, a little of ____ wouldn't hurt – you can't tell me that eating one plate full of ____ would be that awful.”

Me: “Yes it would, and here's why:

“Yes, it tastes really good – YUM – the mouthfeel is amazing and the flavors are exploding in my mouth. Wow – that dopamine hit is AMAZING! Damn – bring it on! Ten minutes of pleasure.

“Fifteen minutes later, my stomach starts to feel weird. A little churn here or there. Another 15 minutes and I'm looking for a bathroom on the other side of the house, praying they have air freshener in there.

“Twenty minutes after that, I start yawning. Uncontrollably.

“In an hour, my stomach feels like a huge lump.

“That night, the regret sets in. I reason with myself that it was a special occasion and I rarely do something like that.

“I wake up with a mild food hangover. Remembering what I did the day before, I curse myself and those who eat that way all the time. I vow to exercise and eat clean, even threatening my body with a fast. That afternoon, the cravings start, but because I've eaten so well up to the point, I give myself permission to eat a snack – vegan, but not whole food, plant-based – which leads to snacking for the rest of the night since I've already blown it.

“This goes on for between 3-7 days, until I realize that these cravings are caused by the dopamine hit I got at the party. Then I know I have to power through the cravings and get the final vegan shit out.

“I have 2-3 days of grumpiness and white knuckling through to have a clean diet again, not to mention the 3-5 pounds I gained over the last week of eating this way.

“So, in answer to the original question about “you can't tell me that eating one plate full of ____ would be that awful…” YES is would be!”

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Music

The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website, WillRidenour.com.

Gratitudes

Thanks to Plant Yourself podcast patrons – Kim Harrison – Lynn McLellan – Brittany Porter – Dominic Marro – Barbara Whitney – Tammy Black – Amy Good – Amanda Hatherly – Mary Jane Wheeler – Ellen Kennelly – Melissa Cobb – Rachel Behrens – Tina Scharf – Tina Ahern – Jen Vilkinofsky – David Byczek – Michele X – Elspeth Feldman – Leah Stolar – Allan Kristensen – Colleen Peck – Michele Landry – Jozina – Sara Durkacs – Kelly Cameron – Janet Selby – Claire Adams – Tom Fronczak – Jeannette Benham – Gila Lacerte – David Donohue – Blair Seibert – Doron Avizov – Gio and Carolyn Argentati – Jodi Friesner – RuthAnn Funderburk – Mischa Rosen – Michael Worobiec – AvIvA Lael – Alicia Lemus – Val Linnemann – Nick Harper – Bandana Chawla – Martha Bergner – Molly Levine – The Inscrutable Harry R – Susan Laverty the Panda Vegan – Craig Covic – Adam Scharf – Karen Bury – Heather Morgan – Bonnie Lynch of Plant Happy Oregon – Sabine Kurtzhals – Nigel Davies – Marian Blum – Teresa Kopel – Julian Watkins – Brid O'Connell – Shannon Herschman – Linda Ayotte – Holm Hedegaard – Isa Tousignant – Connie Haneline – Erin Greer – Alicia Davis – Heather O'Connor – Carollynne Jensen – Sheri Orlekoski of Plant Powered for Health – Karen Smith – Scott Mirani – Karen and Joe Crabtree – Kirby Burton – Theresa Carrell – Kevin Macaulay – Elizabeth Rothschild – Ann Jesse – Sheryl Dwyer – Jenny Hazelton – Peter W Evans – Justine Divett – Joshua Sommermeyer – Dennis Bird – Darby Kelly – Lori Fanney – Linnea Lundquist – Valarie Hummel – Emily Iaconelli – Levi Wallach – Rosamonde McAtee – Dan Pokorney – Stephen Leinin – Patty DeMartino – Mike and Donna Kartz – Deanne Bishop – Bilberry Elf – Marjorie Lewis – Tricia Adams – Ian Cramer – Nancy Sheldon – Lindsey Bashore – Gunn Marit Hagen – Tracey Gulledge – Lara Hedin – Meg from Mamasezz – Stacey Stokes – Ben Savage – Michael K – David Hughes -Coni Rodgers – Claire England – Sally Robertson – Parham Ganchi – Amy Dailey – Brian Tourville – Mark Jeffrey Johnson – Josie Dempsey – Caryn Schmitt – Pamela Hayden – Emily Perryman – Allison Corbett – Richard Stone – Lauren Vaught of Edible Musings – Erin Hastey – Sean Owens – Sagar Naik – Erika Piedra – Danielle Roberts – Michael Leuchten – Sarah Johnson – for your generous support of the podcast.

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