I have come to the conclusion that writing and dieting definitely do not mix. If you have been writing for any length of time, you may have found this to also be true in your own life. If you have an answer for this problem, please let me know—seriously.
First of all, I find that when I am heavy into writing—especially when writing something that is very exciting—I find it difficult to get adequate sleep. I’ve tried 1) staying up late so that I am very, very tired when I lay down 2) stopping writing at least an hour before I go to bed so that I don’t have my story on my mind.
Both of those help…sometimes.
I also find that I wake up in the middle of the night, thinking about my characters, and cannot get back to sleep. I give it a half hour. If I don’t fall asleep, I just go ahead and get up. What’s the use in tossing and turning for the rest of the night?
What does sleep have to do with weight control? The latest research says that getting a good night’s rest helps with weight loss. The reverse is also true. Not enough sleep results in weight gain.
Secondly, writing—again, this is especially true of writing something exciting—causes me to snack. The faster I type, the faster I shovel it in. The more suspenseful the writing, the more I am likely to go for something small and easy to pop into my mouth. My favorites are popcorn and nuts.
Finally, writing is a sedentary activity. We writers need to get up and move around every hour or so to clear our brains, stretch our muscles, and burn a few calories (especially if we have a snacking problem to counteract).
I belong to an exercise group which meets, daily. I feel successful if I get myself there twice a week. Because it meets at the beginning of the day, I often find myself skipping it and going directly to my writing, thinking that it is wasting precious time, when I know, in fact, that it is good for both my body and brain.
I guess I will never write a cookbook. I can just imagine what might happen to my weight if I focused on yummy recipes all day long!