Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Binging and night eating are tough for me. When I get the urge to eat when I'm alone, it can be extremely difficult to break the chain between the urge and getting up to go to the refrigerator.
It appears I have problems with impulse control, or deferred gratification.
According to this article, skills in this can be taught, but it's not clear how long the delayed gratification behaviors persist:
It seems the key, at least in this article, is self-distraction. There are a number of techniques I've heard of that people can use to break the chain when the urge to eat strikes:
- Doing sit-ups or push-ups or going for a walk
- Logging the food in the "I didn't eat that" tracker
- Making sure that preferred trigger foods are inaccessible (locked or not there in the first place)
- Setting a timer and telling yourself that you can have it if you still want it after 20 minutes
- Meditating on the feelings you're having at the moment
When I'm successful at dodging the urge to eat, it's usually due to a combination of factors:
1) I've usually had at least 150g of protein
2) I've avoided starches and sugars
3) I've eaten enough fat and fiber
4) I'm not dehydrated
5) I've exercised in the past 2-3 hours
These things help prevent the physical sensations that trigger the urge to eat. And even if I do get the urge (and I do, believe me) it's not as strong if I've fueled myself in the above ways earlier in the day.
Once I'm alone at home if the urge to eat strikes there are things that have worked for me with varying degrees of success:
1) Engineering my environment so that tempting, easily eaten food is not there. My pantry at the moment consists mostly of dried beans, which take too long to cook to satisfy an intense short-term urge. I do most of my eating at work, where there are people, and I'm less likely to slip.
2) Logging what I *don't* eat in a separate tracker
3) Drinking a glass of water or Crystal Lite or having a diet soda if the urge for a treat is really bad
4) Not having cable in the house so if I want to watch TV it has to be streaming over the internet. (TV is a big trigger for me.)
5) Exercising after work. This minimizes the time I spend alone at home before going to sleep and also provides those appetite-suppression effects of exercise right when I need them the most.
Is this normal behavior? Probably not. But if I were a normal person, I never would have had a BMI over 50 three years ago.
I will do whatever it takes for me to continue to be a healthy, active size so I can continue doing the things I like to do (white water kayaking, cross country skiing, cycling, snowboarding, swimming, etc.)
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Now that I've been discharged from PT I'm going to try and resume my original exercise schedule:
M - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Tu - XC ski at lunchtime (if there is snow), Spinning in the evening
W - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Th - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Spinning in the evening
F- XC ski at lunchtime (if there is snow), Cardio & lifting @ home (or kayak pool session) in the evening
Sa - Playing outside (kayaking, XC skiing, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.)
Su - Playing outside (kayaking, XC skiing, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.)
Since there isn't snow at the moment in this hemisphere there won't be any XC skiing or snowboarding for a while. And given that I prefer my rotator cuffs intact there won't be any snowboarding AT ALL anymore except in good (powdery) conditions.
According to my HR monitor I'm not supposed to train until Friday (because I rode 100 miles on my bike last Saturday). But given my personality I know it isn't a good idea to take lots of rest days in a row on purpose because they tend to lead to lots of rest days in a row not on purpose.
So I did my last PT session yesterday and a spinning class last night but I did it gently without going all-out. I definitely felt the fatigue in there. I didn't have as much oomph to draw on.
Today I can't go to Tae Kardio but I will do Body Pump in the evening.
Tomorrow I won't be able go to Tae Kardio or spin class and plan on paddling in the evening instead.
As far as food goes, I seem to be in night-time munchy mode again so I had to dump the rest of the cornmeal and corn flour because I ended up cooking it as cereal last night. I don't think there's much else left in the house that takes as little time to cook, so I should be safe, for now.
Yesterday I made the mistake of starting the day with mangoes and spring rolls, which was too much carbs and not enough protein and seems to have set me up for cravings the rest of the day.
Today I started with my usual Greek yogurt, wheat bran, and whey powder and I feel a whole lot more sated.
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