I love chocolate, and I’m almost positive it’s something I could probably never give up completely. Chocolate is scrumptious, and call me crazy, but I feel like chocolate “gets me”. Chocolate knows my name. The only problem is that it calls my name way way way too much!
For about the last 30 minutes of my 2 hour workout this morning, I could not stop thinking about chocolate. I’m not even going to lie about it… I almost got off the elliptical so I could go to the market and buy chocolate donuts, which I would have of course scarfed down secretly in my car before going back home.
Sometimes I ignore it or busy my little mind into forgetting about it, and the calling will lessen. But other times it doesn’t matter what I do. I can’t ignore it. I can’t trick myself into forgetting about it. And that’s when it really sucks because I only have three options:
1. I can torment myself all day thinking about it. Sure the craving goes away, but it always comes back. I’ve found that if I ignore a craving too long I usually end up over-indulging. Not good. Not worth it.
2. I can just give in and go buy a candy bar or chocolate cake or brownies, which will slow down my progress and make me feel icky and disappointed. Granted, having those things is perfectly fine, but for as often as I have chocolate cravings, I’d be eating them a few times a day!
3. I can incorporate chocolate into my healthy eating plan. That way I’m still getting the yumminess but doing so in a much smarter way.
I’ve chosen options 1 & 2 several times. They never end well.
But option 3… oh how i LOVE option 3.
I didn’t entertain the idea of the chocolate donuts for too long, and thankfully it was pretty easy to tell myself to get serious and stay focused. But it was mostly easy because I decided I would eat chocolate for breakfast when I was finished with the workout. Once I decided that, I stopped thinking about it and was able to focus on finishing strong.
And after the workout?
Unsweetened cocoa powder is almost always the answer to my chocolate cravings. Sometimes just a few chocolate chips satisfies my craving, but nothing comes close to fulfilling the craving like the cocoa powder does. I put it smoothies, sprinkle it over pancakes or apple slices or bananas or oranges or strawberries or……..
But here’s what I did today: (I thought about taking a picture to share, but honestly I couldn’t put it down long enough to do so!)
Chocolate Banana Smoothie
Blend together: 1 frozen banana, 1 cup almond milk (or any other), dash of cinnamon, and a few dashes (like 4 or 5) of unsweetened cocoa powder.
This smoothie ALWAYS hits the spot.
Today I added 1/4 cup of oats, 1 tsp of chia seeds, and a few splashes of this morning’s coffee. MMMMMM!!!!! I like adding oats to my smoothies because it makes me feel fuller longer, and it thickens up the smoothie nicely.
Craving chocolate (or anything else!) doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. Sometimes it’s perfectly fine to indulge and not feel guilty about it. But for every day eating, finding healthy ways to incorporate what you’re craving into your diet is the way to go.
How do you incorporate your cravings into your healthy eating plan? Or maybe you don’t but would like to? Or maybe you don’t and don’t really care either way? What works for you? Any favorite recipes you’d like to share?