Friday, January 03, 2014
You know that saying 'The road to hell is paved with good intentions'?
Yeah. That was the holidays for me.
Going into it, I thought yeah, I got this. I've dealt with lots of my 'issues' and developed all these 'tools' so I can handle something as innocuous as several days off in a row, a hiccup in my routine and a few family dinners.
Yeah not so much.
Turns out, and of course you and I both knew this, that nothing has really been fixed in this grand idea of 'control' around uncontrolled circumstances. I was still amazed at how quickly I returned to my old habits. Habits like choosing the cheesiest thing on the menu, eating it all, eating until I was SO full, and mainlining chocolate because it's on EVERYONE's coffee table and given to me as gifts by the bucket load.
So after a few days of eating poorly and not fitting in a workout it was 'starting tomorrow', I'll get back on track. But tomorrow never comes of course. It being a few days after New Years, I still haven't really gotten all of my habits back under control. When this happens, I have to return to the basics and the one thing that really works is to incorporate those changes one at a time. It's not a light switch, I can't flip it and be perfect. So I go back to step 1 - stop drinking diet pop. The pop creates the cravings etc. etc.
I'll move through each step just like I've done before when I faltered. I don't like to use the term 'fall off the wagon' because when I visualize that saying, I see the wagon as being this high place of sober living, the protected area where it's hard to get to and once you do, no one can reach you unless you fall off. But that's not where I can exist, I have to exist in the real world, with my feet on the ground, pounding the pavement on this journey through life. And sometimes, there's this big-ass rock right in the way and I trip over it. And then I lick my wounds, along with some ice cream and a bunch of chocolate and candy and movie theater butter-coated fingers and then I stand up, pull up my now tighter big girl panties, and I keep going. And I slowly pick up all those great habits I had that I dropped when I faltered. Oh! Here's my no-pop habit. Oh! There's my 10 freggies a day habit. And here's my yearning for exercise! It's splayed out like a yard-sale and I just have to pick them up again.
It hasn't been a total and complete gongshow in that I did get some exercise. My brother was visiting (which was awesome) and he worked out with me a few times and went on a big 2 hour hike.
But I haven't been on a scale since before Christmas and I think I'm going to hold off until BLC starts. I'm not quite ready to deal with the damage yet. Not to say that I'm just going to keep going on this dangerous path. I'm working on picking up my good habits again so that hopefully when I do get on that scale for BLC that it the ultimate holiday damage will be kept to a minimum.
So welcome to the New Year folks. I've missed you all!!!
Let's rock 2014.
Monday, December 09, 2013
I've been having a rough week. A rough few weeks really. While I'm continuing to get my exercise in every day, my food issues seem to be rearing their ugly head (just when I thought I'd gotten a hold of them and started to 'master them').
I've been doing a lot of 'comfort eating' and a lot of 'just this once'. Except 'just this once' isn't supposed to mean just-this-once-a-day-along-with-a-bunch-of
-other-crap. And I've been bingeing which I haven't done in a while. I've actually tracked all my food in spite of my bingeing and it's always such a gut punch when I do track it and realize that I've had almost a 4,000 calorie day. Such as going to a movie on Friday and having a large buttered popcorn and m&m's for lunch. Or on Saturday night when I'd spent the day eating within my calorie range (gotta get back on track after the popcorn fiasco from the day before!) and then became obsessed with the thought of chocolate chip cookies. Warm, soft, gooey chocolate chip cookies. So I got up and made them. I should never even have had the ingredients in the house to make them - but I did. And then I ate most of them.
Does anyone else suffer from 'obsessing' over a type of food? I'll get something into my head and then I can't stop thinking about it. It's FOOD for gawd's sake. Why am I focusing on it so intensely? Why is the thought of it all-consuming sometimes? Like with the popcorn - the night before I had decided I was going to go to a movie on my day off and then I immediately thought about the popcorn. Mmmm buttered popcorn. And then I literally thought of it all evening and all morning and had decided that I was going to have it for lunch. And not just a little bit, a LOT. And I looked forward to it the whole time.
In terms of the bingeing, I know that these choices have not been just because I wanted them, they've been me trying to deal with feelings. I've been trying to figure out what it is that's wrong - why I'm turning to food to medicate myself. Some of it started around 'his birthday', some is because I know I'm not going to get to my weight-loss goal for the year (which is dumb because it's JUST a number!), some of it it loneliness, some of it just shear boredom - so many of my friends have moved away and are busy with their own families, I don't have as many people to just do things with.
But I think a lot of it has to do with the holidays approaching. I hate the holidays mostly because it becomes painfully obvious that I'm single. My family even gives me extra gifts because they literally feel bad for me that I don't have someone special buying me something special. I miss my brother and feel like I'm alone at Christmas and that it's all about my stepsister and her husband and their kid - that I'm just an add-on. I get annoyed because Christmas makes me broke because buying all these gifts for people on a single salary is difficult. I get sad because I'd like to have a family and carry on fun Christmas traditions that my parents did with me but I can't because I don't have kids of my own. I get sad because New Year's is coming and I don't have a New Year's kiss waiting for me. As you can see, basically I'm throwing a giant pity party and I'm the guest of honour.
I've recently met a counselor that specializes in depression, body issues and self acceptance techniques. She's running an 8-part course on body acceptance and learning to love yourself and I think I'm going to shell out the cash to take it. I think it might be worth it. My goal for this year was to learn to love myself. I haven't quite learned that yet - I'm still obviously working on it.
I'm not engaged as much on SP as I was - the last few weeks I've been pretty absent. I know one of the reasons is that I just don't like how they've changed things. They've taken away some of the things that I used most often, so I'm not enjoying my experience on the site as much. If it wasn't for BLC I might not have even been on the site at all!
Anyway, just a rough few weeks. Struggling to regain my footings and momentum. It happens to all of us at some point or another. It's staying with the commitment to change my life and my habits that I'm working on. It's not a perfect science.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
So with today’s weigh-in, I have officially lost 20% of my starting weight. It took a little longer than I had hoped or planned (doesn’t it always) and every day was a struggle but I eventually got here. I have a long ways to go but that’s why it’s important to make interim goals so that you feel like you’re accomplishing something. My next goal will be to get to my lowest adult weight – that’s in another 16 lbs. Things are starting to slow down now, more like an average of 1 to 1.5 lbs a week rather than 2 or more (and the ‘average’ is important because some weeks it’s nothing, or even a gain and then some weeks it’s 3. So unpredictable this weight loss stuff hey?) And I have expected a slow down (though it sucks) so I know it’s going to take a little longer and require a continued concentrated effort on my part to make this next goal.
I think back to when I was at this lowest adult weight that I will be striving for again. It was close to 10 years ago now and I was only there briefly, maybe a few days. And something in my head clicked and gave me ‘a pass’ so to speak to just hang out at this range for a while. I stayed within about 5 lbs of it for maybe 6-8 months before I really started gaining weight back. I had reached this semi-goal and for whatever reason, which I know was psychological and not physiological, I didn’t get past it.
I sometimes wonder if we sabotage ourselves because we’re scared of finding what’s left after we remove the layer of fat that has been insulating us. That all our flaws will finally be really visible when there’s no unusual body size for people to be distracted by and which we can blame things on. That we’ll find people will actually dislike us for just being US and we can’t chalk it up to them not liking us or discriminating against us because we’re fat. Or scared we’ll find that men don’t want to date us anyway and it wasn’t just because we were fat. Or that we were passed up for jobs because we just were and not because we were fat. Or a million other things that we either consciously or subconsciously blame on the fact that we’re fat. We’re scared of removing this layer, announcing to the world ‘THIS IS ME’ and finding ourselves rejected.
And I haven’t even made it anywhere near it, but I’ve already found myself thinking …I’ll just get to the 100lb lost mark and then I’ll stop. I don’t want to lose more weight because then I’ll have really saggy skin and that will make me feel as unattractive as being fat did. I mean, gawd forbid I get down into one-derland! I’d look like an elephant! So there’s my brain ALREADY giving me a pass on reaching an (arguably) healthy weight.
So I’m trying to concentrate on the now and the very near future. The next 5 lbs, not the next 50. I’m trying to not get too wrapped up in ‘what life will be like when…’ and concentrate on making more and doing more with my life now. With my body as it is right now. None of it’s easy and I fail at it on literally an hourly basis.
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Since March my weight has been slowly going down, falling under ‘the yellow line’ on the weight loss report. Sometimes it’s a lot under it and sometimes it was just a little. But since I returned from my trip in early September, that yellow line is now BELOW where my weight loss is. Meaning I will likely not be hitting my goal for the year by New Years.
Yesterday was my 3rd week of weighing in where I hovered in this same 2 lb range. And I was a total saint most of those weeks. I had upped my exercise with lots of cardio. I had stayed in my calorie range. But then got on the scale and get a loss of 0.4 lbs. It’s so incredibly frustrating. And for the first time in a long time, I ‘compensated’ myself by eating foods that I didn’t need. Lots of carbs. And pizza. And grilled cheese sandwiches. And ice cream. With chocolate sauce. I went way over my calories and I was uncomfortably full. And in the end, how did I feel about it? I thought about it and acknowledged that yesterday I was feeding emotions of frustration to do with my lack of movement on the scale and on some crap that was going on at work that was getting me really angry.
And then that turned into guilt and anger at myself for not sticking to my cardinal rule of not making it all about the number on a scale. I let an inanimate object that displays a number dictate how I felt all day and influence what I put in my body. When you think about it objectively like that – it’s completely ridiculous.
There were a couple things this morning that helped me refocus. One was a facebook post from a girl I went to high school with. She was ‘the other fat girl’ in high school. We’ve stayed in touch over the years, not the best of friends, but certainly called each other if we were going to be in town (she lives in Calgary now). Anyway, she was announcing that she had finally reached 100 lbs lost. And she looked fantastic. Unlike me, this was her first attempt and accomplishment at a big weight loss. I private messaged her and told how great she looked and encouraged her to keep it up and NEVER gain it back. Because if you’ve lost a great amount of weight before and then gained it back and you’re staring down the barrel of doing that loss again, you KNOW how much work it’s going to be in terms of blood, sweat and tears. And it makes it that much more foreboding. She remarked to me that she never realized just how much commitment and dedication that it would require. I told her about my journey, being some pounds behind her and that she’s an inspiration to me. And then we made an agreement that next year at our 20 year high school reunion we were going to show up as the formerly fat girls, now thin. And laugh at the former thin girls, now fat. (I know, I’m going to hell. I was only kidding. I won’t literally laugh at them.) She eagerly agreed and so this is something that’s fun to think about. Showing up at the high school reunion with her and having people barely recognize us. I don’t know if they’ll even have a reunion (they didn’t have a 10th) but it’s fun to think about.
The second thing was a blog post from STEPH-KNEE this morning that helped me remember that it takes time. Today she’s celebrating 85 lbs down (congratulations!!) and it took her 19 months to do that. That there is no timeline, no deadline and we’re all on our own journey. And I have to remember that.
I decided that maybe it’s time to re-examine some things as they tell you to do when you hit a plateau of some sort. So I entered in the exercise minutes I’ve been doing for the past 3 weeks consistently along with my goal for the year and it upped my daily calories by 370. So maybe I wasn’t eating enough to sustain the exercise I was doing. I wasn’t hungry at all, but for the next week (and just pretending that yesterday never happened…except the lesson I took from it), I’m going to up my calories with more protein and healthy choices and see if it makes a difference.
I’m mostly writing this blog entry to mark that I am acknowledging that I made poor nutrition choices yesterday in direct response to how I was feeling emotionally and not physically. If I’m going to overcome my emotional eating tendencies permanently then I need to start by acknowledging when they do still happen and know that I didn’t just flip a switch one day and solve my problems with feeding my feelings. That it still needs to be monitored and managed.
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