Thursday, December 4, 2008

In the Zone

I'm not referring to the famous diet, I'm talking about a state of Zen, a sort of meditative state of consciousness whereby I become entirely focused on exercise and simultaneously impervious to temptation. It is a powerful feeling, and a wonderful state of being. I got a flash of it a minute ago and it sent shivers (pardon the unintentional pun) down my spine.

When I am in the Zone, I feel no hunger, nor cravings such as sugar pangs. I drink water and herbal teas continuously. I refuse starchy foods, preferring fresh ingredients and as much vegetables as I can fit on my plate. I feel full of energy and completely guilt-free!

Strangely enough, when I'm in this mental state, I love to bake. I can maintain a sort of mental separation between the ingredients and myself (though I do admit I have licked my sugar & butter-covered-fingers on more than one occasion!). I think this just emphasises the fact that I don't bake for the finished product, I bake because I love the action of baking, and of course I love sharing the spoils with my colleagues/TKD buddies. Thankfully I have enough of them that I can't be accused of trying to fatten anyone up!

I think I'm going to bake Banana Bread tonight... It's a sweet loaf cake, made with bananas and walnuts. If I'm not already in the Zone, then hopefully this will push me in to it.

Does anybody else notice stark contrasts in their behaviour when they're training hard/restricting food? Or experience that zen-like state I'm referring to?


Charlotte said...

I have totally been in the Zone before like that. I love it! Everything just seems to run so smoothly - like my body is a well-oiled machine. Sadly something - quite often PMS - intervenes and once I'm out of the zone it seems devilishly hard to find it again, you know? Still, good to know it's out there.

Sagan said...

I LOVE that feeling! It's great. I actually share your thing about baking when I'm in the Zone too- there's something very calming about the process.

Of course, I have to make sure I get it out of the house fairly quickly. Otherwise I'm liable to fall out of the Zone and start munching on the baking. But while I'm in it is sure is wonderful:)

Shivers said...

Charlotte - I know what you mean, it's so hard to get back into it! When you're in it, everything seems so clear and simple, you can't ever imagine not being so focused. I always wonder how I ever lost my way. Then something happens, like PMS, or a back spasm, or just a stressful day where I accidentally get too hungry and then *BAM* I'm back to square one, on a rampage for carbs! :o) It is really good to know others feel this though! :o)

Sagan - It really is calming! And yes, this tray of Banana Walnut Muffins (quick change of recipe plan) has to leave my house tomorrow morning! It's funny, I hadn't thought about it until today, but I do the majority of my baking when I'm restricting my eating. I think it's a therapeutic way of still being surrounded by & involved with food, without stuffing my face with it.. :o)

tokaiangel said...

I love that feeling too! It's where I am now. However, I know it's also a danger signal for me because it's not just about healthy eating, it's about sticking to a regime and seeing results, and I don't always know when to stop. I get so hooked on that feeling that I start cancelling on my friends and family because I don't want them to ruin my plans.

So I'm keeping an eye on myself!

TA x

Tricia said...

I love the feeling. I tend not to be as exclusionary: I still eat starches, etc. but it tends to be in smaller amounts, and less often. I also tend to not miss dessert if I don't have it.

Not quite the "zone", but as close as I'll probably ever get.

Shivers said...

TA - I know that feeling. That's the kind of feeling that made me not go down to my friend's dept. here in work on Friday when they were having a birthday party for her.... I just felt a bit weak on the old willpower and didn't want to risk it... I did pop down and see her later, and I'm glad I wasn't around for the cake etc., but I wish I had felt strong enough to brave it for her. :)

Tricia - I think everyone has their own form of a Zone, it's just a focused form of conscious exercising and eating, in fact your normal state of being is probably equal to my Zone state! :)