Friday, August 7, 2009

On Conferences and Free Food

Weight: 260.6
BMI: 45.73

(-.2 day to day, -17.4 overall, yada yada yada.)

One of the things I've always loved about my job is that I get to go to lots of events and conferences. Up until a month ago, "free food" was a wonderful, wonderful perk. These days, it's a bit closer to a nightmare.

For all of today, I've been at a conference. We had a continental breakfast where I was just able to grab a piece of fruit, but lunch was a sit-down, 3 course ordeal. Throughout this journey, my willpower's held relatively well, but lunch was just a disaster. I ate the whole salad, over half the lunch (of salmon, risotto, and asparagus in some unknown cream sauce), even a few bites of desert. There were pastries and other goodies provided throughout the day, but I was able to resist those relatively easily.

I wouldn't be despondent if I could, you know, just have something very light for dinner and stay within my calorie limits. But I'm not going to: I have to go to a dinner for the conference. And it's going to be a seated meal of at least three courses, lasting 90 minutes. In other words, it's going to be bad.

I've become excellent at resisting food temptations when left to my own devices. I'm even pretty good at not eating food when it's optional. But at a served meal in a social work situation, you can't really choose to just not eat. You have to eat something, to not do so would be some combination of weird and rude. Which isn't to say you have to eat the whole plate, but you have to have a decent bit.

And that's where the problem starts. I always, always, always end up eating more than I mean to at these events. It's like 90 straight minutes of sitting with food! Good, free food. That others are eating. It's badness.

So I'm probably going to overeat tonight. My gym stays open till 11, so I may try to go after dinner.

Oh, and bonus: the conference is a half day tomorrow, too. So, truncated weekend and a fattening lunch on Saturday. Oh joy. Grrr.


  1. That's a tough situation. What I try to do is strike up conversations while eating and really slow down. If it's not too awkward, I'll have the plate taken away when I'm about halfway done. Having food just sitting there in front of you for an hour and a half is brutal. I feel for ya...

  2. Try to remember that its only a day of bad eating, as long as you remember to go right back to eating healthy first thing tomorrow. And if you hit the gym tonight, thats awesome and if not, DONT beat yourself up over it! Guilt always seems to lead to binges.(At least for me!)