I played lacrosse in college and was burning monster calories for a lot of years, i seroiusly believe i never learned how to eat like a layman, i eat like i've got a three hour practice ahead of me. i always work out hard too, and i consider myself pretty fit, but could stand to lose a little bit of gratuitous weight, given how much i excercise and play soccer 2x a week etc.
How do i train myself not to eat like i'm 19 and a D1 lacrosse player?
Gradually, I'm afraid. First you replace the high-octane food with high-volume/low-calorie versions filled with veggies, and then you reduce volume.
Either that or you apply the "strict discipline" approach where you pre-plan all your meals and calorie intake for a few weeks and don't deviate from an appropriate intake level. Once you've been able to maintain a diet for 3-4 weeks it becomes much more a matter of habit so you can relax your watchfulness a bit more ;)
I had the exact same problem. I swam my entire life, including 3 years D1 and I never learned to eat like a non-swimmer, which means I always ate as much as my body could physically consumer. Not swimming and not changing eating habits resulted in 30 extra pounds.
I basically did what Melkor suggested and planned my meals and calorie intake for a couple months and it has really helped me get a handle on how much food is appropriate for the amount of calories I'm burning now. I still work out hard everyday so I never feel like I'm not getting enough food, but planning definitely helped open my eyes to the fact that I was eating way more calorie dense foods than my body needed before.
Good luck with the change! It took me a while to realize that I needed to make a change, but now that I have I am 15 pounds lighter already and feeling much better.
Take this with a grain of salt, it might not be appropriate for you, but perhaps you could try doing the 'six small meals per day' deal. I think that something like that would be enough of a change in your habits that it might be easier for you to be conscious of what and how much you're eating. For me at least, a lot of changing my calorie intake has been training myself to actually THINK about what and how I'm eating.
i too was a D1 athlete and 6 small meals a day is not gonna work. I was easily eating 3000+ calories and eating whole pizzas sometimes for a meal. Going from that to basically saying eating that pizza throughout the day into 6 small meals would be pretty ridiculous expectation. Melkor is right. You need to re-train yourself. Takes some discipline that's for sure. You need to eat more high fiber food in each meal so you actually feel full even though you may only be taking in a few hundred calories.