Sunday, September 28, 2014
When I decide to completely abstain from a food, i.e. sugar, it feels hard at first, then it feels like freedom because it takes away so many other hard choices. But somehow, it doesn't last forever, and when I go back to my "forbidden fruit," I eat it in excess. I then think this is because I am trying to make up for all the time I went without it. So, I conclude that I shouldn't ban it, I should just allow it in moderation. But then, when I allow it "in moderation,", I still eat it in excess and then I decide I need to ban it again because it is easier to not start than it is to start and stop. This cycle seems to repeat itself over and over....and yes, the similarities to alcoholism definitely come to mind. I see slender people enjoying their treats in moderation and I want to be those people, but maybe that is not me. Some people enjoy alcohol in moderation, but some people simply cannot. (Thankfully I don't drink!)
My first day of tracking, I ate one home-made chocolate cookie and stopped. I thought, "This moderation thing is going to work. Yay!" But then the past two nights, I have gone to parties and started munching on the treats, and not stopped. Then I've come home and eaten more treats! It's ridiculous, it doesn't make sense. The obvious solution is, "Stop doing that!" But I can't seem to stop. No amount of reason seems to help. I have all kinds of internal dialogues going on in my head about why I shouldn't eat what is in front of me, but the food goes in my mouth anyway. If that isn't addiction, I don't know what is. I don't like to say I can't control certain foods, but the evidence does seem to support that conclusion over and over again.
Now, on the other hand, all of this non-stop nibbling has happened at night. Maybe I just need to make a commitment not to eat after a certain time at night. I have done this before and it most certainly saves me a load of calories. Also under consideration, both of these non-stop eating experiences have been triggered by food at a party, so maybe I need to stop eating food at parties, especially when I've already eaten my dinner and hit my calorie count for the day!
One thing is for certain, some restrictions need to be set. As much as I love the theory of "all things in moderation," I haven't managed to make it work in practice. It seems so simple, but some monster seems to take over inside of me and keep putting bite after bite into my mouth, in spite of all logic that says it is time to stop.
So, what restrictions to set? I'm going to call them "boundaries" instead because everyone needs boundaries. I'm contemplating "No sugar" again, and/or "No eating after 8:00." I have been successful in the past with "one treat a week" and feel it's much more live-able, but maybe it just feeds to the problem. Ah....I don't know, but I'm going to decide on something right now to commit to for the next week, then I can assess after one week.
Commitment 1--No eating after 8:30 with an exception for fresh fruits or veggies if I really feel hungry. Light popcorn allowed on the weekend.
Commitment 2--Only two servings of sugary dessert a week (we'll try that first before total restriction).
I'll continue with my commitment to track daily for 2 weeks and exercise 6 days a week.
Now it's time to go enter all of those calories from the party last night!
Saturday, September 27, 2014
I once had a health coach who encouraged me to write something each day in the "What I did right" category. She told me this because I am hard on myself. It is easy to be hard on yourself when you eat over 3,000 calories on the second day of re-committing to health and fitness. That is what I did today. I planned diligently for breakfast and lunch, but when hubby brought home my favorite pizza for dinner, I dug in. That alone cost me 1,000 calories, but then we went to a party. I avoided the snack table until we were about to leave, but then I started nibbling. That set off a chain reaction of nibbling (as it so often does), and I came home and continued to nibble. My thought process went something like this: "I've failed today anyway, I might as well keep eating." Crazy mentality! Then when I decided to "face the music" and track my food, I saw that it wouldn't have been so bad if I would have just stopped at the pizza. I need to overcome my "I've blown it, let's continue blowing it..." mentality. This brings to mind something from the "You on a Diet" book. The authors said when you find yourself going to the wrong direction, instead of berating yourself, be like the GPS voice and kindly say to yourself, "You've made a wrong turn. Make a u-turn at the next available opportunity." I am going to try to keep that in mind the next time I overeat at one meal. I will try to remember it doesn't have to carry over into the rest of the day.
Enough of what I did wrong. Here is what I did right today:
--I exercised at 6:30 this morning, even though I really wanted to sleep.
--I knew I was going to be eating out for lunch so I picked a place that would be easiest for healthy choices and looked at the menu ahead of time, planning what I would order.
--I tracked my food/calories for today, even though I knew the grand total would frighten me.
--I was REALLY tempted to abandon my goal of tracking for 2 weeks straight since I didn't want to face the numbers of my choices today. But instead, I am facing the numbers, and I'm choosing to blog about what happened instead of walking away from my goal and not blogging again for 2 years! I am gaining awareness of how quickly nibbles add up. I'm gaining awareness about how much I really eat. I'm gaining awareness of my thought patterns, faulty mentality, and hopefully learning how to change that mentality. If I keep this up, I believe I will be able to change, and one day I just might stay in my suggested calorie range! :)
Thursday, September 25, 2014
I often laugh when I read my childhood journal entries because they almost all begin, "It's been a long time since I last wrote..." Well, this blog is no different! It has been sorely neglected and I need to change that.
I have not been having any success in the weight loss department lately, in spite of continually trying (and quitting) new programs. I battle daily with emotional eating and just an affinity for overeating in general. The good--I have added so many healthy foods to my life and most days I get more than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables in. I have yo-yo'd on the exercise, but still feel I've exercised more in the past 3 years than in the previous 3. I haven't given up on losing weight/being healthy, but I've had many setbacks and re-gains and it's super discouraging at times. I have tried all kinds of food restrictions (other than calorie restrictions) as a way to lose weight without having to track. At various times in the past few years I've given up the following at stretches (and not all at once)--sugar, white flour, all flour, dairy, meat, processed foods. I was able to maintain my weight loss as a vegetarian (without calorie counting) if I exercised enough and watched the sugar, but I eventually gave that up too because I wasn't losing. I wasn't happy at sustaining weight loss, but now that I've been gaining, I wish I would have been happy with that.
Anyway, I've come to the conclusion, many times, that I need to stop restricting any specific food and just do traditional calorie counting, (it has always worked), but it bugs me. It makes me feel like I'm not living a normal life when I have to weigh and measure and calculate the nutrition content of every recipe. And then I get hung up on not knowing the EXACT calorie count of foods, so I just give up. I also find it to be time consuming, unless I eat everything from a box that already has the calories listed. Since I'm trying to focus on whole foods, this is not what I want to do. When I don't have time to put in my EXACT recipe, I give up. Then I read stories about people who've lost weight without counting calories and I think , that can be me. So I try that program, fizzle out, read another story, try that program, fizzle out, and on and on. So, those are my excuses for not counting calories, and excuses they are. Is this mentality, this refusal to track, helping me reach my goals? No. Will tracking my food on SparkPeople and keeping within a specific calorie range help me reach my goals? Yes. There is it, plain and simple. Yes! It has always worked for me before, and I expect it will work again, if I'll just do it.
So, this is my new commitment. Track for 2 weeks. Just do it and see what happens! What if I mess up and eat the wrong foods or overeat? It's okay, just track it. What if I don't have time to put in the recipe? Just pick something with a similar title and track it. What if I didn't measure the exact amount? Just guess, it's better than not tracking at all. I can do this. I can track my food for two weeks and see if it makes a difference. I've tried almost everything else, why not give this a real effort?
Second commitment--exercise. Exercise makes me feel great, even if it's just a tiny walk on the treadmill. Even if I put aside the physical benefits (which are sometimes debate-able since my exercise regime is pretty low key), I can't deny that exercise boosts my morale, it makes me feel better emotionally, and it's easier for me than battling the food addiction. Perhaps it helps me in that battle. Why don't I do it? I am busy. I am super busy. So are most of the other people I know. It's about commitment, it's about priority, it's about choosing it over other things. I know it makes me feel great, but it is still tempting to choose sleep, or lying on the couch, or other activities over exercise. Well, I'm going to make it a priority. I've done it before, so I know I can do it again.
Okay, so I'm going to keep it simple and start out with 3 goals:
1--Track my food daily for 2 weeks.
2--Exercise daily, six days a week.
3--Post on my SparkPage once a week.
Hooray for starting today!
Tuesday, March 06, 2012
It's 10:30 p.m. and I really want to eat something but I've already gone over on points. It's amazing how quickly you can go over on points even when you're eating vegan. I had a veggie sandwich on a whole grain bun that was 8 points (thanks to the avacado), and I certainly didn't feel like I had eaten 8 points. I could have a big hunk of chicken for 8 points that would surely satisfy me more! I had a big veggie meal at dinner and I wasn't necessarily hungry afterward, but I definitely felt like something was missing. I waited a couple of hours, then made a "shake" with almond milk and frozen bananas to try to feel satisfied. It hit the spot and was delicious, but I was still hungry pretty quickly afterward. I just ate 1/4 cup of pistachios (in shells), and it felt like a tablespoon. I love nuts but I can't eat much of them and stay within my points. I'm just not feeling very satisfied, in spite of going over on points. I feel like I have to eat a lot more food to feel satisfied and I'm never quite satisfied. I don't think this vegan trial is going to last more than a week! I'm interested to see if I'll lose any weight. I hope so!
My food for today:
Breakfast: Kashi Cereal, Almond Milk
Lunch: Quinoa Salad, Rice, Curry sauce, stir-fried veggies
Snack: Veggie Sandwich on Whole Wheat bun with avacado, green pepper, cucumber, lettuce, and pickles; 1 graham cracker
Dinner: Spaghetti Squash topped with Marinara sauce, sauteed mushrooms, spinach, and zuchini (I really wanted some parmesan cheese on this).
Snack: 1 cup almond milk, 1 1/2 frozen bananas, 1 tsp. maple syrup blended together, 1 graham rectangle crushed into it. (This was super yummy!)
Snack again: 1/4 cup pistachios
I better go to bed so I don't eat again! Tomorrow I'm going to try to get some legumes in to see if it will increase satisfaction.
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