Thursday, June 19, 2008
It's never about the food, not really. There's something underlying our skewed relationship with food -- and that something is always emotional. We're using food to fill some need in ourselves.
I'm still trying to figure this one out, personally. I know it's true, but I also am not quite sure about what need I'm trying to fill with food. I wasn't heavy, or thin, as a child, but I did begin to binge when I was a teenager. Not huge ones, no purging, but my mom would bake something, freeze it, and I'd hunt it down and eat (my poor mom). I'd buy whole boxes of cookies & eat them in my room & hide the box. In college, I'd eat an entire box of poptarts instead of going to dinner (just makes me sick thinking of that now).
I know some of it has to do with loneliness. I was never popular, never part of the "in" crowd.
One thing I know for sure: until you work on what's eating you, you're never going to keep off the weight for good. You may learn to eat right, you may learn to enjoy exercise, but the same old problems will be there waiting for that cookie, or chip, or ice cream -- whatever your drug of choice may be.
That is why the HALT tool is so effective. Whenever you're about to eat, ask yourself four questions:
1. Am I hungry?
2. Am I angry?
3. Am I lonely?
4. Am I tired?
If the answer is yes to anything but question #1, it's time to do some other activity than eat.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
I live in TX. My parents live in NY for most of the year, and in CA for about 3 months of the winter. My in-laws & SIL live in Seattle. My in-laws used to live on Cape Cod, and sometimes we'd be able to visit both my parents and my in-laws in one fell swoop.
But now that they live on opposite coasts, it's a little harder.
We were thinking of going to Seattle this summer to visit. Seattle in the summer is great -- in fact, I've been there 3 times -- always in May! And the weather was always nice.
Then they were making noises about going to the Cape (they haven't sold their house there yet).
Then suddenly my SIL tells my husband that my MIL wants us all to go on a cruise to Alaska (something we have always wanted to do) in August. Talk about little notice! But I got on Expedia, and found some that still had rooms available. We talked some more, and they all want to do it -- so we may be going on a cruise in August. Maybe. If we can work out the details.
We like to cruise. This would be our fifth cruise (sixth, if you count the one day cruise to Ensenada, but I don't -- altho it was actually fun). We went on a cruise for our honeymoon. It was almost ten years after that until our next cruise, but it's speeded up since then. Our last was a cruise around the Hawaiian islands for our 20th anniversary. In fact, we'd always said we'd go to Alaska for our 20th, but when it came down to it, we both just kind of looked at each other & said "Hawaii!".
I'm pretty self motivated all the time, but something like this definitely kicks up the motivation a notch. They take photos of you as often as they can on cruises. Of course you want to look your best. I probably won't look as good as I did on our Pacific Northwest cruise (and I thought I was fat then!), but I should look better than I did on our Hawaii cruise.
But I also need to find balance. Push too hard, and something's gonna fall. I've had times in my life where I so desperately wanted to lose weight for something, only to be more out of control than ever. I don't think I'll have that problem this time; this time feels so different for some reason.
I have to find the right balance between a little extra effort and pushing myself so hard I burn out. I'm pretty sure I will. Wish me luck -- in finding balance, and in just getting to go on the cruise in the first place!
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
I was never in denial about my weight gain. Even without a scale, I had a pretty good idea of what I weighed -- although, being an optimist, I'd hoped it wasn't that much.
Many people, after losing weight, look in the mirror and still see a heavy person. I look in the mirror and still see a thinner (not thin, but thinner) person. That was why seeing myself in photos was/is always such a shock.
And isn't it weird how sometimes I can look in the mirror, and really see the changes in my body and be happy, while other times the only things I see are the rolls and the dimply skin and the stretch marks. Luckily, the times I see the changes usually win.
Perception isn't only important with how we see ourselves. It also is important with how we see our food. Portion size is always a struggle for me. In fact, I think that is at the bottom of my weight gain, because in general, I've been eating healthy for a long time now.
But my eyes tend to be bigger than my stomach, especially when it comes to sweets. I go to the farmer's market almost every weekend. I do get some veggies (although it's hard sometimes, because I bring the dogs); I also stop at my favorite "health" food stall.
And the food is pretty healthy -- mostly vegetarian, gluten free, doesn't used refined sugar, and so on. Their latest product is cupcakes. And oh boy, they're awesome. I bought two the week before last, and sadly, I ate both of them during the week. These aren't small, either, they weigh in at 4 ounces, so I would be much better off just buying one and eating half at a time. I still did lose weight, but not as much as I'd like to.
I didn't buy any this week. Maybe next week I'll buy one, although I may wait til the following week when my husband is home and we can share.
I know part of my problem was being afraid I wouldn't be able to get them the next week, because sometimes they sell out of my favorite stuff very early. Which is silly, isn't? It's not like I'm going to die if I don't have a cupcake; quite the opposite, in fact.
But portion control is something I still struggle with, especially with sweets. It's probably something I'll always struggle with. You can learn something from every experience, though, good or bad.
Monday, June 16, 2008
This really has nothing to do with weight loss at all. Except maybe that when I'm painting I usually -- or at least often -- totally lose myself in it. It's too bad you don't burn more calories while painting, although it is hard to eat while you're painting!
This is the tshirt I'm working on. The design needs a few little tweaks -- but in general I'm fiarly happy with it. Not quite happy with the way the cat came out, but at least it's recognizable.
This is for a catswap. On a forum I frequent, a few times a year we send packages to a partner (a new one each time), with things for the cats & the humans, if desired. This is my partner's cat (or at least it's supposd to look like her.
I really like painting on fabric; not sure why. This is the first tshirt I've tried, but I've done some other fabric painting.
And now to return you to our regularly scheduled program . . .
Monday, June 16, 2008
The other day I was wearing one of my favorite tshirts. There's nothing really special about it, I just happen to like the cut. Boxy, but not huge; slightly cut in at the shoulders; and because it's boxy, easy to wear over jeans (rather than having to tuck it in). And one of my favorite colors, purple.
I don't wear this tshirt out, though, because it has several holes in it. Put there by one of my cats when I took her to the vets. One of my cats that's gone; in fact, she's been gone three years already. I hold onto the tshirt, holes and all, because it has sentimental value to me. It reminds me of Puss, and her feistiness.
In this case, I think it's okay to hold onto this tshirt. Some day, no doubt, I'll throw it away (too worn to be donated), or maybe make it into a rag; altho I doubt I'll make it into a rag, that just doesn't seem right.
But what are you holding on to? What's in your closet right now (aha, you knew I had to have a point somewhere)? Do you have multiple sizes hanging there? Why? Are you afraid that you'll regain the weight? Afraid to let go of something you might eventually fit into?
You have to have confidence in yourself to lose weight. Holding on to clothes that are too big for you says you don't. It's almost permission to regain the weight. Donate your clothes that no longer fit.
You should be able to walk into your closet and fit into anything comfortably. There's nothing more frustrating than not being able to find anything to wear that fits. It tells you what a failure you are. Donate your clothes that no longer fit.
I do think it's okay to hold onto a small amount of clothes that are too small as motivation. I have just a couple of dresses that are too small for me that I'd dearly love to fit into again. And one pair of jeans that are the next size down. But I don't have a lot of different sizes in my closet just waiting for me.
It's not easy, I know, believe me. But you'll feel better if your clothes fit you. You won't spend so much time trying to put together an outfit to wear if everything fits.
And if all your clothes are too big for you, it's time to go shopping. Even if you'll only wear your new clothes for a short period of time. You deserve to have clothes that flatter you; you worked hard to have your body. You don't have to buy a lot, but a couple of pairs of jeans, some nice tshirts and blouses, and maybe a skirt or a dress.
Give yourself the gift of flattering clothes, no matter what your size (not always easy, either, I realize, but you can do it -- the Internet is your friend).
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