Thursday, June 10, 2010
It is now June 10, 2010 and I have been working on my new changes for 10 days. So far I have done fairly well in the weight and school departments.
I am down 4 lbs. The last two days have been a little off. Bad calories both days and not enough fruits/veggies, but I have exercised every day except 1 and I have had 8-10 cups of water every day. Even though I knew my calories and f/v goals were not where I wanted them I still made sure I got my exercise and water goals accomplished. Part of my problem with my eating troubles was due to running low on fruits and salad lettuce. I went shopping this morning so I now and stocked up again. I need to learn how to better plan my shopping, but that will get worked out easily enough. One point I am particularly proud of is the fact that I have had only 2 small swallows of soda since May 23 and have had NONE since June 1st. This is a tough one for me. I have been craving soda for the better part of the last week, but I am resisting and I think it is getting a little better. I hope that by the time June is over I will not think about soda as much.
I am not staying on top of my homework quite like I had planned, but everything is getting done on time and I think I am doing alright with the grades. I will have a better idea once I get more grades. I really need to stay on top of the reading better. It all adds up and so if I get behind by only a little bit in my reading each week it only takes a couple of weeks to get extremely behind and then my grades will fall. It can be tough doing all the reading and homework while taking care of a toddler. I hate putting him in front of the TV or making him play by himself most of the day. I always feel guilty and feel like I am ignoring him. It is not fair to him. One the other hand I am too tired by the time he goes to bed to read for a long time and get homework done. It's all just a balancing act. Spreading everything out so I am not ignoring my son too much at a time and still making sure I get everything done on time. At least I am already 1/4 of the way through the class. Only 5.5 weeks to go and then I can take a little time off. In the long run this is better for both of us and he is fed, cleaned, loved, and cared for so a couple hours here and there without mommy's attention will not hurt him. I make sure that I am aware of his actions so he does not get hurt, and he learns something new nearly every day. Over all, I'm doing the best I can and I think we are doing well.
I hope to lose another 4 lbs this next week, but realistically I think it will probably be closer to 1 or 2 between my two bad days and just the fact that I am not trying to be extreme. I will be happy with whatever I lose just so long as I lose. So here it goes. I am off to get through the rest of the week and to get closer to my goals in all aspects of my life.
Tuesday, June 01, 2010
I find the struggling is my middle name these days. I have set some loft goals for myself, I have a full schedule, and up until yesterday I had no motivation and was letting myself feel overwhelmed. The thing with being overwhelmed that is my biggest problem is that I sort of panic, doubt myself, and then wallow in the feeling blaming my full plate (metaphorically speaking) for my failure and lack of motivation. I am finally taking strides to overcome this feeling of being overwhelmed, the feelings of failure I have, and the weight that weighs on me both literally and figuratively. No more can I blame being overwhelmed. No more can I wait for the actions to motivate and call to me. No more can I live like this and complain all the while not taking any real actions to change.
I have always had the opinion that if you do not vote you can't complain about the results, or if you do not help than you can't complain about the outcome. Well, I have not been helping myself truly and so I have no right to complain about this weight. If anything, I am the one who put this weight in office. Well no more! I am taking my life into my own hands, I am taking control and I am admitting that the only one I have to blame for the trial ahead of me is myself.
I have set up a few streaks for myself which I will start reporting weekly. I will be in here blogging once a week. The goal is to take baby steps, not let the feeling of being overwhelmed drag me down, and just make healthier choices. This is going to be a hard and long journey, but it is worth it and not only will I be bettering myself physically, but emotionally and intellectually too.
It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me...
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Alright, so those of you who have been reading my blogs know that these last few weeks have been up and down for me. I have not been as committed and thus will pop in for a two or three days then disappear for a week. Well, I am hoping things are about to change.
Monday I start all my new classes for the summer semester. One ofthe classes I am taking is a Phys Ed class called Choices For Life. It is supposed to help us all make better choices in our lives with our health, physical and mental, and learning how to change and prevent things. I do not know exactly what this class will entail, but so far in my readings I am getting the impression that we will be asked to set new goals for helping ourselves.
This class is an 8 week (normally 16 weeks during spring and fall) class along with my other ones so this is going to be a VERY busy next two months. I am hoping to take advantage of my PHED class and to take advantage of the distractions provided. My goal is to be down 10 lbs. I will weigh myself Monday and post it in my blog.
I can't promise that I will blog daily, but I will keep updating as often as I can. I will also be sharing any interesting or helpful facts, ideas, etc. when I come across them. I KNOW I can do this, I just have to keep at it. You can do it too!
Love to all my friends and followers.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
8 cups of water: 3
10 minutes of exercise: 3
3 veggies/fruits: 3
Blog/Post Streaks: 3
Aches and Pains: 2
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
8 cups of water: 2
10 minutes of exercise: 2
3 veggies/fruits: 2
Blog/Post Streaks: 2
Aches and Pains: 2
Energy: 3 (stupid book kept me up most of the night. lol)
I just finished an English class and thought I would share one of the essays I wrote for it. I am not saying it is very good, but I think many people will be able to relate to the topic.
Hippo on Skates: Theories of a Food Addict
Three sisters overjoyed to be together again after so many years gather to make plans for the day. These three excited ladies decide to go skating and are quite pleased with their decision. That is, until the dark cloud appears. This dark cloud takes the form of the husband of the heaviest sister. He is quick to share his opinion of his wife’s plans, “Who wants to see a hippo on skates?” This is a well known story in my family that involved my grandmother and her sisters. Many people have thought this and worse about people deemed to be obese like my sweet aunt, most of the women in my family, and I. The next thoughts are inevitably, “Why don’t they diet?” It is not so simple a task losing weight when you actually have an addiction problem that is unidentified, such as food addiction.
To many people, even most doctors, addiction seems like a strong word to use when referring to food, but in many cases it cannot be describes as anything let than an addiction. I must be included in this group of addicts and it is something that I have to come to terms with and fight on a daily basis. Some people would blame it on a lack of self control, or even laziness. This is an accusation made by someone who does not understand what it is like to want something so bad that it is all they can think about, to deny themselves this item all day long only to wake up in the middle of the night or even to not be able to sleep until they consume this item, and to not be able to stop themselves from doing this over and over again. A smoker or alcoholic can tell you what I feel is the same that they feel when they are trying not to light that cigarette or take that shot.
The AA, or alcoholics anonymous, handbook has been leant to all kinds of addictions since the 12-step program is a good universal guide. Also common across the world is denial. To fix a problem you must first acknowledge you have a problem. Most of us do not see ourselves clearly or choose not to see ourselves clearly and so are in denial. I certainly have gone through this and have been untruthful with myself because I was afraid or appalled. We have a tendency to ignore the signs and rules. The suggested serving size on a package is perhaps one of the most commonly ignored rules. How often do you only drink 2/5 of a 20 oz soda? We tell ourselves that if it is liquid, fat free, or diet then it does not matter instead of admitting the truth, facing reality, and being accountable for our actions. It was many years before I started looking at drink nutritional information and realizing that I should watch my soda intake and food serving sizes. I still fight with serving sizes. I measure everything, but a heaping cup is the same as a level cup, right? Nope! Ass all the extra fat, calories, and carbohydrates from the heaps and it can quickly change your entire intake for the day, even to add up to an entire extra meal. Not many people want to admit that they eat an extra 7 meals more than everyone else every week.
After an addict admits they have a problem the next impulse for many is to go cold-turkey. This is not possible for a food addict, so they will have to deal heavily with temptation and self control on a daily basis. Unless we start walking around attached to an i.v., which I hardly see happening, humans have to eat food and drink water every day. It is preferable that we eat multiple times a day and consume 8 glasses of water, making it impossible to give up food. Every day we are faced with having to plan meals, shop for them, cook them, and try to do all this without giving in and eating too much and all the wrong things. Most addicts are not addicted to broccoli, carrots, celery, and apples. I, for one, am a carbohydrate addict. I have to make myself eat vegetables and meat while limiting my rice, pastas, breads, and sweets. This is rather hard to do when you can’t stand the taste or texture of something you are supposed to eat and crave the things you should not eat every second of every day. This is a battle fought at a minimum of 3 times a day every single day.
As if the need to eat was not a large enough hurdle let’s point out another one. One lovely weekend I was hanging around the house just watching a movie on television when it went to a commercial. The screen was suddenly filled with the image of a big juicy burger, the kind that makes a mess while eating it, a large serving of hot, perfectly seasoned fries, and a nice cool refreshing soda with all those little bubbles. I was sitting there fighting the urge to jump in the car and find that burger when the doorbell rang. I opened the door to a little uniformed girl with a huge smile on her face. Yes, you guessed it: Girl Scout! The money goes to a good cause, so how can I say no to those cookies? So now I have failed to resist the purchase of something I should not be eating, but can I resist eating all these cookies? Not hardly! All this is just a small example of how much food surrounds us. We are confronted with yummy and not so healthy food everywhere we go or look: billboards, TV, fundraisers, books, social events, etc. A food addict feels as though there are hurdles everywhere and this can wear a person down to the breaking point. Imagine facing a battle you know you will lose every day of your life.
I can’t tell you how many times I have felt that I had reached the bottom, survived and then started to gain a little ground. Success can be one of the best motivators, but if you stumble it’s just that much harder to forgive yourself because you have thrown away that success you cherished so. So many times I have felt that I was finally making progress when it was ruined by my favorite and yet least favorite time of year: winter holidays. In my family it is common for the woman to have only one wish for Christmas, “Please, do not let us gain the usual 10-15 lbs over the holidays.” We start justifying our cheating at Thanksgiving and it is all down here from there. Next thing we know we are greeting the New Year and feeling depressed because we slid back into our old eating habits and have destroyed all our progress which inevitably depresses us greatly.
Depression is a common emotion with addicts of all kinds and often is a part of the reason the person is addicted to their substance of choice. To beat this depression, it is sometimes necessary to delve into our pasts to identify where it comes from. Are we feeling guilty, angry, hurt, or betrayed by someone in our pasts? Is there something or someone causing us harm, physical or emotional, in our present lives? Why are we being self destructive and how do we make it better? If a person struggling with weight gain can figure out when he or she started gaining weight then maybe the cause can be identified. The relationship between the afore mentioned lady and her husband was what caused her weight gain. Furthermore, the insensitive comments like the one stated above are one of the reasons she will likely never be able to overcome her problem with weight and food. Until emotions are identified and resolved, the chances of success are slim.
Changing our emotional status, trying to beat the food habit, and trying to gain control of our lives must be a life style change, just like with any other addict trying to kick a habit. We food addicts can’t go into this looking at it as a diet. Diets are temporary and when you have a problem with a substance, whether it be drugs, cigarettes, alcohol, or silly old food, you have a problem for life. You will always be the addict and the only thing you can decide is if you are recovering or letting the addiction take control. Being an addict means you will always be hanging on to the side of a cliff where all it will take is one gust of wind, or one bite of food, and all of a sudden the grip you thought was firm on the wall is lost and you are falling again. Giving something up for an afternoon can be easy because you know it is just a short period of time and then you can have your fix again. Quitting for life is much harder and the only way to not be overwhelmed is to take baby steps. Realizing these changes are for the rest of my life, but I do not need to accomplish them all in one day is the only way I can even think to keep my grip on that cliff.
In my opinion, one of the most important parts of the 12-step program is the sponsor. When we go through our lives and all the changes that come along it is always nice to have someone to talk to, especially if they have also been or are going through the same things. Friends can be wonderful supporters in many things, but when it comes to addictions the best supporter is someone who knows what it is like to walk in your shoes. When you can relate the relief you feel can be great because you know that you are not alone. Without my grandmother, who has fought her weight her entire life, I don’t know who I could go to that would understand, have advice, and give me strength. My battle would surely have been lost long ago.
My Uncle Tom is a person I admire, look up to, and whom I always want to be proud and approve of me. Needless to say, I welcome any advice he gives me except on one topic: weight loss. As a teen he decided to get into shape and has stayed in shape ever since. I know he could easily gain weight as fast as I if he was not so disciplined, but since he has been fit for his entire adult life I don’t feel he can relate to me. When he tries to give advice all I can think is, “He does not understand what it is like to be me, and he never will.” Right there I have automatically isolated myself and shut him out, but I do not do it on purpose. No matter how sound his advice I will never feel comfortable talking about my food addiction with him because from my position it just all sounds like theory and not his experience. I want help from someone who speaks from experience.
If more obese people could recognize that they have a problem, get a friend or sponsor, and follow the 12-step program then maybe more of us could control this problem and help ourselves life healthier lives. Food addiction is a problem that needs to be conquered and like any other addiction or problem it requires someone to take that first step, to leap that hurdle, to stand up tall and say, “Hello, my name is Nicole and I am addicted to food.”
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