Tuesday, May 25, 2010

While I'm Thinking About It . . .

Okay, so still thinking about my food choices - a few things come to mind. First, the reason I had such success at the beginning is because I didn't trust myself so I didn't allow myself even a TASTE of something. I didn't lick my fingers when making a sandwich or a cake or anything. But now, I've muddied the waters and I allow myself all sorts of tastes of things. I know the carbs of those tastes add up along equally with the loss of willpower. So NO MORE TASTES - this is where my black/white thinking pays off. If I want to go off plan for a reason, an occasion, then go off, but otherwise get back on and let the program work.

Second, it occurs to me how much the idea of rewarding behavior with food is so entrenched in my thinking. My whole life good behavior was rewarded with food. So yesterday I had a couple hours of stress so the idea of going home and grabbing a bar was just not enough of a reward for the few hours of stress I had just endured. "Rewarding" myself with Subway was much more in line with what I had sat through. Just like when I finally passed my state exam I "rewarded" myself with Mexican food and a beer. The reward seems to be equal to the event - so a little stress = Subway, fairly healthy food whereas big stress = Big dinner & alcohol, paying for it the next day. So back to asking myself, "What am I asking food to do for me right now? Entertain me? Reward me? or Nourish me?" Before putting anything in my mouth, I'm going to go back to asking that question.

So far, so good today. No cheating - no "good except for that . . ." Onward & downward!

There's a Saboteur Among Us

Yesterday was a bad day trying to stick to program. The initial decision came down to going to Subway or running home & picking up a bar. I chose Subway. Then it went downhill after 9 pm. So as I was sitting there @ 2:30 am thinking why I am making these choices. I thought, "Why did I go to Subway instead of going home? Why was eating a bar not fulfilling enough?" Fulfilling - does it come down to trying to feel fulfilled? Why is being a good mom (not that I totally think I'm a good mom), being a friend and co-worker with my God, being a good wife, being good at my job, being a good friend - why is this not fulfilling enough? Why is Subway needed to help me feel fulfilled? Why is eating necessary to feeling fulfilled? The truth is, the system in which we live isn't designed for us to feel fulfilled - we all feel something is missing. We all feel as if we don't have the time to relax & enjoy the ride. I just think it's sad that somewhere in me I think food will help me enjoy the ride - whereas feeling good about myself and my decisions will help me enjoy the ride even more. I wish I could get it through to my "FEED ME WENDY" side that you can eat at Subway or eat those cookies again, if you just cooperate for another few months and let the rest of us get to our goal. I deserve to get to my goal!! I am worth the effort this is taking!! My family deserves to see me reach my goal - they have suffered the consequences of my bad choices and subsequent illnesses. All of my internal voices will need to get on board with this process and I need to help myself reason that eating out will not help me feel fulfilled. I will feel VERY fulfilled reaching my goal. I will feel relieved to reach my goal. I will feel a huge weight lifted off of me, literally and figuratively, by reaching my goal. If it's about fulfillment, then actually get fulfilled - not a quick 5 min fix. That's what addicts do.

It was the COOK! (go figure)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Mom's on board

So after 9 months of my showing the success of TSFL & Medifast, after losing 80+ lbs, my mom jumped on board this week - but only for a week! LOL! She cracks me up. She's made numerous attempts of losing weight during the past 9 months and had a great stint of walking and working out - and she's in the same place she started. I thoroughly understand!! And I thoroughly understand the resistance to this program. It takes away the food frenzy and obsessiveness - really, I understand. The nut doesn't fall far from the NUT TREE! :-) Love ya mom. So, day one is done & she has proclaimed, "I didn't HATE the food!" So let's see how coaching my mom goes. The fun part of this job is knowing that success and/or failure is thoroughly out of my control. And for being such a control freak, as I am, it's a great feeling of freedom to just do my job and not sweat the rest. I look forward to her success and realization that having a reasonable program, not obsessing about food, and giving in to your body's rhythm (ALWAYS have to look that work up!) of eating actually works. I'm thinking positive people!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

E.D. (no, no - not the medical problem)

"Comfort Eating", "Emotional Eating", "Food Addiction" was the first issue to resolve and now I'm coining a new phrase - "Comfort Eating Out" no - how about "Comfort Dining" or "Emotional Dashing"- E.D. for short (ha!!). I'm going to have to work on this a bit. Anyway, this is the next thing I'm struggling with. I'm finding such a link between keeping to a budget and keeping to my eating program. I really like to eat out. I'd be a natural in NY where people don't even know where their kitchen is in their home. They eat out every day and have the option of delivery of 50 restaurants. But there aren't as many fat people in NY because they walk everywhere. Any time I've ever traveled to NY I lose weight. (Same with a cruise ship, but that's because the ship motion makes me slightly sick the whole time and I can't eat very much) Back to my point - so we're going over our budget and seeing how much we spent so far this month on food and it's discouraging. We NEVER keep to our budget - but Kurt says, "You've been so stressed with work, it's seems okay to eat out as long as you're earning money." Here's the problem - if that were the end of it - GREAT - but it's not. I just don't lose weight that fast while eating out. Even when keeping to the "plan" because of salt and fat added to everything. But, of course, I don't stick to the plan when eating out because it's too tempting to eat that little thing here or there. I'm going to have to figure this out before I drive myself nuts!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

It's okay to not be HAPPY

"Right after I got sober (the first time), an interviewer asked me if I was happy, and I said, "Among other things."

Happy is one of the many things I'm likely to be over the course of a day and certainly over the course of a lifetime. But I think if you have the expectation that you're going to be happy throughout your life - more to the point, if you have a need to be comfortable all the time - well, among other things, you have the makings of a classic drug addict or alcoholic." - Carrie Fisher
Wishful Drinking

I related to this. One of the first lessons learned in my recovery of Emotional Eating is that I can handle this discomfort without eating - without trying to find comfort. It's OKAY to be uncomfortable. I can handle this intense emotion on my own. It's a bizarre lesson, isn't it? I mean, of course I can handle it - but for some reason most of us try to soothe the discomfort with substance abuse. Life is uncomfortable and messy - I'd like to think I would want to make the journey as pleasant as possible whereas it depends on me. Not add to the discomfort by creating an enormous pain-ridden body. It's okay to not be happy right now - I will be again later - but for now, survive the moment while taking care of yourself along the way.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

No More Dieting

The big "headline" for emotional eating is the movement of NO MORE DIETING. I totally agree and disagree with what's being said. I agree with the fact that we use "dieting" as a way to obsess about something else. Many of us obsess about something or other, so it's just another way to obsess and keep our minds running at a million miles per hour. "Dieting" is a way to avoid looking at ourselves and what's really going on - we just look at the food and blame the food and lack of self-control. We also use "dieting" as a way to make our behavior today "okay" because we tell ourselves - "Tomorrow I start my diet" and we live in a constant state of denial. Also, most "diets" don't work - they are not sustainable nor do they teach us how to live in the normal world. They are fads and quick fixes and feel like taking on a PT job - soup to make, points to calculate, diaries to keep, meetings to attend - it's all way too much for the average person.

What I don't agree with is the fact that people like me never learned a normal relationship with food (which is most people in the world) and we NEED to learn a new way of eating that is sustainable, healthy and non-emotional. This new way of eating is then termed "diet" and then shunned as well. I spent a few years and LOTS of money figuring out my emotional eating. I then spent a year and LOTS of money going to Pilates. Both of these things have been life changing, but didn't help me lose weight. I still didn't have a clue how to eat and not obsess about food. I still felt crazy when it came to food - not because I was eating junk but because I was supposed to eat what my body craved and what was healthy for me. When you've never been taught how to have a healthy relationship with food, that's not possible. There needs to be more guidance than that. It's not about getting thin as much as learning a healthy relationship with food. Learning what it feels like to eat well and actually create a desire to feel that way.

The reason this plan has worked for me is because - it's SO simple, I can't obsess about food. The lack of thinking about food all day was a real challenge because I didn't need to keep a diary, go to weekly meetings, calculate points - I felt a void at first because "What do I think about if not obsessing about food?" That's how this blog came about - I needed to actually think about life and my relationship with food and I decided to get it down on "paper" - screen. The other reason this plan works is because, I think for the first time in my life, I don't feel the up and down blood sugar plunges my old way of eating created and I feel balanced, more healthy. I feel the actual nourishment of food - for the first time in my life. I actually think about eating junk food or sugar and CHOOSE to eat nuts or another bar because I WANT to feel better after eating and not gross. I actually see my food as nourishing and sustaining myself instead of feeding my emotions. AND I will eat this way forever - at least that's the plan and the possibility. Unlike most plans, this plan can be sustained forever. Besides adding back fruit and healthy grains, this is basically how I'll be eating. I've been able to make the same dinners for me and my family - and they are healthier as well. I have seen a difference in my kids because they are eating healthier and less carbs. My daughter's little stomach pooch has gone down and the boys' rashes have improved considerably.

So I agree that figuring out the emotional reasons for eating is a great first step and a necessary step to sustain a healthy way of eating. But I do think that using an eating plan (diet) is also EXTREMELY necessary because we need guidance and won't learn how to relate to food if we aren't taught.

Body Image

I went to lunch with my mom yesterday and asked how her out of town friend was - she said, and I quote, "She's REALLY wrinkled and weighs about as much as I do now." WOW! There was nothing said as to how the friend was doing but only about how her body looked. It really struck me how frustrating it must be to go through life putting so much emphasis on body image. I also wondered how I came through my childhood as well adjusted as I like to think I am. Then I watched Oprah and saw woman after woman talk about how they HATED their body. So sad.

One thing I realized a LONG time ago was that my body was thoroughly separate from what I had been doing to it. It's not my body's fault that it was fat & falling apart - it was my fault. In fact, I began to admire how well my body was doing at supporting all that extra weight. I would carry my child up the stairs & thought it was going to kill me and yet I carried around an extra 150 lbs around all the time and my body has distributed it so well that it doesn't feel like 150 lbs. My body has been resilient and wonderful in these years of crisis. How dare I blame my body and disparage it when it's MY choices that have made it less than desirable. NO - I'm not about to HATE my body. I HATE some of the choices that I make and I am less than pleased with some of my genetics but I LOVE my body and am grateful every day that it tries its best to keep up with the negative decisions that I have made. Wonderful, God given, Vibrant, Resilient body of mine!

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Update on the breakfast obsessing - didn't go out. As I was typing the blog I was thoroughly planning on going out to eat. Then about 10 minutes after I was done typing, I didn't want to go anymore. It really does help to get it out. I know we underestimate the power of getting it out - thinking about something is not the same as getting rid of something. We really need to get it "out of us" either through counseling or journaling or blogging. I'm always surprised how much it helps. Later that day, though, I did go off plan. But since Wed I am 100% back on. I dropped 2 lbs yesterday and am feeling better about things. My plan is to be 100% on until our anniversary dinner on 5/28. So that helps me stay on track - knowing the plan and knowing when I'm allowed to eat out. I'm going to get this done this year!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


It's 6 am & I'm obsessing about going out to breakfast. I've been comfort eating for a few days & I keep telling myself that illusive lie "Just for today - I'm going back on plan tomorrow!" The thing is, I don't know what's going on. I had a mini breakdown a few nights ago thinking of having to get the boys up to date with their vaccinations for school - they cry and cry and cry - like for 3 hours afterward (it hurts their feelings that we would allow someone to hurt them - every time they remember the shot, they start crying again!) It's horrible and I can't imagine going through that several times this summer! And I think I'm severely stuffing some stress that I don't even know I have. I've been feeling a strange sense of impending doom recently but nothing real is going on. I think it has to do with summer coming and then the boys starting school is freaking me out a bit. Kindergarten was not a good year for Em (even though preschool was fine) and I think I'm really nervous about the boys. Between that and not liking the change of schedule that happens every few months. As soon as we figure out a new schedule, it changes. Not sure what to do with Em this summer. Not sure if I should put her in summer school for a few weeks but then that costs $300 - don't really want to spend that!! But the 3 kids for 3 months is a bit overwhelming as well. I have 1 1/2 months to worry about this - am I really going to comfort eat for 1 1/2 months? Really? I need to figure out another way to deal with impending stress without eating my way through the year.

I started this plan in August so maybe I shouldn't be surprised when certain times of the year are tough. Like winter break and Christmas were tough - I REALLY felt deprived eating on plan when everyone was eating to their hearts content and had a "vacation" day. Then Spring break and our vacation were times "off". So now I have impending summer, which is always a stressful time for me. I was hoping I would exercise my way through this stress (did good last week) but even typing that makes me laugh. I've fought for so many years the genetics my family has passed down. Too funny. I'm thinking I'm part of Jack LaLanne's family tree or something - exercise my way through stress - HA. Not to take away what I'm accomplishing - I guess I should be more proud of my success seeing the genetics I have.

Okay, on with the day - another day to decide how I want to treat myself. And it's only 6:30 am - it's going to be a long day!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Cardio Resistance

I was able to do interval training 2 times this week. The first day I had to fight off "the voices" - "15 minutes is fine for the first day" "Don't hurt yourself - take it easy" "Even if you walk the rest you still are doing more than usual" "This isn't meant for 250 lb women" "Are you trying to kill yourself?" SHUT UP!!

The second day I started off by saying, "Empty mind, empty mind" and thought what a waste that was so I started repeating, "You are worth this" over & over & over. When it became really hard I repeated, "You can do this". Much better attitude overall. Also, I found that I started suffering a bit later into the jog, like at the 45 second mark instead of the 10 second mark. I also knew I wasn't going to quit, so no need to try to convince myself of that.

But then I started to get sick. This is the 3rd or 4th time that I got sick after a few days of walking. So I took tons of herbs/vitamins/silver & slept 12 hours & fought it off. I don't think it's a coincidence that I get sick when I walk - I think cardio is just harder on me & I need to take better care of myself if I'm going to push myself. I need to drink all my water the day before, the day of & the day after. I need to sleep at least 8 hrs and I need to avoid stress. It's not going to work if I don't take care of myself.

I wanted to do it 3 times this week, but will settle for 2 & do it again next week & take care of myself! My body can no longer burn the candle at both ends & not pay the price!