I recently mentioned that I was in the midst of my second 30 Day Challenge of 2016, this time it’s a Nutrition Challenge. You know, the one where you promise yourself, and others that you will be eating well for a month.
For the sake of brevity, I will not define exactly what “eating well” means.
Whenever I have a conversation with someone about “eating well” , I hear, “Oh, I love Tofu!” or, “Are you vegan? A vegetarian?” I reply, “No, I’m a sexagenarian!” That usually forces them to change the subject, because many of them don’t know what that means, and they are afraid to ask.
If one is not careful, the simple conversation about food ends up the same way a conversation about religion or politics goes. No matter your position, your partner in conversation holds the opposite position, with unrelenting passion.
Now your food choices have become a source of polarization in the workplace, all this because someone asked what you were having for lunch!
One of the biggest challenges with changing your diet (I hate the connotations of the word “diet”) is the reaction of those around you. Last month, you were the Office Forager. Constantly on the lookout for who brought in donuts or cookies. You knew every woman in the office with a candy jar on her desk. (FYI – that is not sexist. It’s just a fact, guys do not bring stuff to share.)
If you start to bring your lunch to work, and you no longer forage for free sweets in the office, people immediately notice. It has been weeks since you have been spotted eating co-worker’s peanut butter and jelly out of the jars, in the lunchroom fridge.
People know you are serious, and they are afraid.
Why are they fearful? They smell a zealot in their midst. A former junk food junkie, like themselves, has just gone to the dark side.
Now they hear you discuss where to buy local eggs from range free chickens. “Oh, let me tell you about the wonderful local grass-fed beef I found last week. I think I posted my steak to Instagram. Or was it Pinterest? I think I posted it on my board called, “Why I eat better than you!“.
You wander around the office with your lunch, waiting for someone to ask what you are having. You then elaborate on your primal ingredient list, macros, micros, calories and your fat-burning and muscle gain goals.
Your colleague looks at you with a glazed look, and says, “Sorry, I don’t get it.” And you reply, “Oh, it’s easy. It’s kind of like CrossFit, but with food!”