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Beck Day 15 - Monitor your eating

Thursday, August 30, 2012

On day 15, Beck tells us to monitor what we are eating.
Every evening we should write a detailed plan of what we are going to eat tomorrow.
And then every day we should track what we actually eat.

I have been tracking most days since May last year - but I tend to track on the fly. Because I am home with the kids, it is quite easy for me to track either just before I eat - or shortly after.
Tracking after can be risky - but mostly I sort of know my meals are under 400 calories - with few snacks, which fits into my daily target.
Its the impromptu snack - which then leads me to have to juggle the rest of the day - or put it down to a bad day.

So, tracking ahead of time seems like a good idea.
It will help me to make enjoyable meals - since I can always go and buy something if I am missing it. Rather than have to make something from what I have on hand (my usual technique) which leads to 'same old, same old'.

I look forward to learning about how to deal with meals that I can't plan (like when hubby cooks, or when I am eating at a friend's place, or a restaurant where I don't know the menu in advance) - but let's not get ahead of ourselves.

Today I went for a jog, and am about to do a quick spark ST video.
I will be within all my ranges.
I sat down for my meals - which I took my time over.

OK - so I grabbed a non fat milk coffee and a handful of walnuts. Not a problem - but I think I would have felt better if I had planned them in advance - rather than reacting to a perceived 'need'.

Pretty good!
I hope you are having a great day.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 8/31/2012 10:12PM

    It took me a while to figure out that the nutrition tracker will let me track a day in advance. And of course during the work week I generally make my lunch the day before. Gotta admit, however, that I do eat the same things day after day pretty much: and National Weight Loss Registry says that people who take weight off and keep it off also eat the same things pretty much day after day. I don't get tired of it because "salad" can mean a huge range of different vegetables; and so too "soup" for supper is a different pot every week.

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ILIKETOZUMBA 8/30/2012 10:59AM

    Ooh, this makes me feel good - I already track all my food the day before! :) That makes me feel like I'm doing something right! I just find it easier to figure out what I'm cooking for dinner and all that in advance so I don't spend time the next evening hemming and hawing as I poke through the pantry or the fridge. I can just get to chopping!

Anyways, you are just SO focused and in control. It's amazing.

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GHOSTFLAMES 8/30/2012 5:00AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Update - Beck (Day 14) and holidays

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I was on Beck day 13, then we left on our holiday to NZ.
Day 14 turned out to be about preparing for your new eating plan - including tracking all your food in advance. Of course, I was staying with a big group of my in laws, with very little control over food. Planning food a day ahead was not going to happen (I did what I could).
I decided to spend the 2 weeks holiday consolidating what I had learned during the first 2 weeks with Beck - to begin the next stage upon my return.

The first week of my holiday was terrific.
Everyone was having a drink or two before dinner - I just had a glass of wine with the meal.
Everyone was going out for coffee - I had a tea instead (a dash of milk, instead of a whole cup).
The occasional cake was on offer - I would just have half a piece.
I did at least 40 minutes cardio, and some ST everyday.
I was so in control - feeling good.

The second week, my hubby and I took 36 hours out, leaving the kids. We went skiing for a day, and took a 90 minute hike on the second day. No ST - but the skiing is pretty full on. Which gave me an excuse (or so I thought) to relax my food choices. And when we returned to the fold, my sis in law had arrived with 4 (YES - FOUR!) tins of baking, and all of a sudden I was off the rails.
The next week was not an all out binge - but I definitely put my Beck thinking to the back of my mind. Giving in to cravings (repeatedly), eating when not hungry etc etc. I kept up the exercise - maybe not quite as disciplined - but still pretty good.

We arrived home last night, and I weighed in today (my official weigh in day) a half kg (pound) heavier than the last weigh in. Still well within my maintenance range - and I often go up or down a pound or two - so no damage done . . . . except to my giving in muscle!

Those who know Beck will remember she talks about strengthening your resistance. I can see how the 2 days away when I allowed myself to splurge gave my giving in muscle a real boost - which I failed to turn around for the rest of the holiday.

Definitely have some homework to do.

Oh - and the holiday was so great. The kids had a ball playing with their kiwi cousins, and we had plenty of exercise and fun.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANOE10 8/29/2012 7:57AM

    You did great only gaining one pound over that vacation. Now is the time to get back on track and develop that resistance muscle. It is very hard when you are not the one doing the cooking and you are away from home.

Hang in there. You are doing great. You are still focused on being healthy and learning about yourself. Great job.


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WATERMELLEN 8/28/2012 9:05PM

    Really, you should give yourself credit. You learned something, you consolidated, and you did no significant harm.

Beck has a chapter about planning your eating when you will be travelling . . . next time!

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SLENDERELLA61 8/28/2012 7:30PM

    You did SO MANY things right, you should be celebrating!! What a great, active vacation. I do understand wanting to do EVERYTHING right, and maybe next time you can exercise that resistence "muscle" one more day. Really, give yourself a break. You did great!! As you get back to Beck you'll be improving your eating and your thinking, and perhaps that will make next time a little easier. Hope so, for both of us!! -Marsha

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Beck Day 13 - Overcoming cravings

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

At first, I am thinking that I don't really suffer from cravings. Uh - yeah, I am completely delusional! My cravings are associated with having food in my vicinity that I normally would avoid. I don't have a lot of junk food in the house - but going to a friends place for a party, or afternoon tea - and I can hardly participate in the conversation because I have one eye firmly on the cake, nibbles, chocolates etc.
Yeah - I don't suffer from cravings!!

I am visualising the next 12 days staying with my parents in law. I know one time we stayed with them my mother in law had made about 4 different kinds of slice (probably not an american term - imagine brownie type products) that were produced for morning tea, afternoon tea and supper. Everyone enjoying 2 or 3 of the treats at a sitting - and at about 200 calories a go I would guess.
These are going to be screaming at me VERY loudly.

I already talked about how I plan to buy some fresh fruit and veg to cut up and serve along side these treats, so I can have a serve of fruit instead. I will aim to have just a single treat in the evening for supper. So, this exercise in overcoming cravings will be very useful.

Beck says that the more you give in, the more you strengthen your giving in muscle. The more you resist, the more you strengthen your resistance muscle.

Mindset techniques
LABEL IT - This will help you to recognise you are in a risky situation
STAND FIRM - if you um and argh about it, your craving will intensify. If you say you are absolutely not going to have it - the craving will lessen
IMAGINE THE AFTERMATH OF GIVING IN - a few seconds of pleasure, some self recrimination, a gain on the scales - or how good you will feel when you don't give in
REMIND YOURSELF YOU WANT TO LEARN TO WITHSTAND CRAVINGS - The more you practice this, the better at it you will become

Behavioural Techniques
DISTANCE YOURSELF - if the slices are on the table, take my cup of tea and go sit on the couch
DRINK A LOW CALORIE DRINK - herbal tea, tea, water etc. Sometimes thirst manifests itself as hunger/craving
RELAX - deep breathing, visualisation etc
DISTRACT YOURSELF - play with the kids, do the dishes, make plans for the rest of the day, go to my room and read Beck Day 13 to myself etc

Along with hunger recognition & hunger tolerance - I think this will be another really important technique for me to focus on.

Did not get a walk in yesterday - so did a quick Coach Nicole kick box 10 min video last night. Today I have some ST planned. I think I will do another Coach Nicole video for that too.
I might not be able to check in on my holiday - but I will be taking Beck with me, and will use that, and my 1000 fitness minutes goal to ensure I return from my holiday still in my maintenance range.

Thanks for all the support so far!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 8/15/2012 8:02PM

    Great distillation of the Beck techniques for dealing with cravings. If your MIL makes these goodies, I'm thinking you may also need to rehearse Day 29, Resist Food Pushers. It's OK to disappoint your MIL by not accepting the treats!!

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TEENY_BIKINI 8/15/2012 4:00PM

    Amazing! This is a great blog with great insights!


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ROSEWAND 8/15/2012 12:05PM

    It is also a good idea to pre-visualize your response
to a temptation. Picture yourself in the presence
of the treat and feeling relaxed and in conscious
control of your response, i.e. respond not react
to the potential trigger.

Years ago, when I had a serious sweet addiction,
I would visualize the candy section at the store
with a large black X in front of it. It really helped
me break the addiction. I have no interest in
the candy or sweets section. I can walk into
our wonderful nearby bakery and ignore the
sweets as well. I can now even have them
in the house and forget they are there. In
the past, that would never ever happen.

Comment edited on: 8/15/2012 12:11:22 PM

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ANNABELLMARIE82 8/15/2012 6:59AM

    drinking a lot of water definitely helps me with cravings ... that and fruit.My only down fall really is CHOCOLATE lol so for that a fudge-cicle or a pudding cup are great both low cal and enough to curb the craving :o) Stay strong and have a great holiday.


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WENDYJM4 8/15/2012 5:50AM


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SHEILA1505 8/15/2012 1:50AM

    Thanks for sharing these Beck daily notes - I've copied this one! Big time problem when I'm not home :(

I think you have some great strategies for fending off the In Law damage - damage control! Good luck on your holiday. Keep on keeping on

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Beck Day 12 - Practice Hunger Tolerance

Monday, August 13, 2012

Just in case you are interested, I am following the "Beck Diet Solution - train your brain to think like a think person'. It includes 6 weeks of activities and ideas to help you start to change your thinking, and thus your behaviour.

I am up to 'practice hunger tolerance' - where she suggests skipping lunch for a day, just to experience hunger, and learn that hunger is not an emergency. In fact, she says hunger is not nearly as bad as you might think.

She suggests choosing a day in the next few to run the experiment. I feel like I need to defer this, until after my holiday. Is that being slack? Maybe.
I don't feel like a want to do it on a week day when I am looking after the kids on my own - since I imagine I might be a little grumpy. Late afternoon is already a difficult time for me - don't want to add to the stress. Sunday is the best day for me.

I am therefore going to take a raincheck - but I am going to do it. I actually think this is a really good thing to get my head around. Just because I am hungry, I don't have to eat.
Of course, I don't like to be too hungry if I am going into risky environments (like a restaurant, where I may decide to order too much and the wrong things) - but in general, when I have my next meal planned and ready to go, then I want to get used to waiting.

Yesterday evening was not good. I started nibbling bits that the kids were not eating.
Luckily, I was able to modify my own dinner to compensate.
I was going to have shrimp stir fry with brown rice - but I skipped the rice, since I had already nibbled a serve of pasta - and I changed my late night snack from a museli bar to half an apple.

Yay me, recognising my bad decision, and fixing it as quickly as possible.

Today I feel like more food. I have just finished lunch - so I am desiring more food. I am not hungry. I'm going to make a cup of tea, clean away the lunch dishes, and see how I go . . .

Have a great day!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ILIKETOZUMBA 8/14/2012 11:38AM

    I don't think it's being slack at all to wait a bit. It will definitely affect your mood to be hungry, and your energy levels, so you want to make sure you do it at a time where those won't be a problem for you.

That's a good idea, practicing being hungry. I certainly have a tendency to go a little crazy and stuff my face when I'm hungry and waiting for my next meal to be ready. I'll have to try it sometime myself!

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CELIAMINER 8/14/2012 9:28AM

    Although I haven't read Beck Diet Solution, I do remember pondering hunger early on in my weight loss effort. When I experienced hunger pangs, I checked in with both my body and my mind and visualized hunger as a box that I could take off the shelf, see, smell, feel with my fingers, and then return to the shelf. It helped me to work on retraining myself to know that hunger pangs would pass if I gave them a few minutes and that I didn't have to rush to the pantry in search of a snack. Hope you have a good experience with the exercise!

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*MADHU* 8/14/2012 4:23AM


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Beck Day 11 - Distinguish between hunger, desire and cravings

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Today is about getting in touch with our real feelings with regard to food.
I must say, when I was doing a little pre-reading of about the Beck book - I read something about her thoughts on hunger - and it was a bit of an 'ah-huh' moment for me. And I am becoming a little more aware of this. All of a sudden I am not feeling that hunger is a bad thing that should be avoided at all costs - since I live in a land of plenty. My next meal is never more than a few hours away,

So hunger is when you have not eaten for a few hours, and feel that empty feeling in your tummy, possibly accompanied by rumbles and growls.
Yep - understand that.

Desire is when you have just eaten, but still want to eat more.

Cravings is when you have a strong urge to eat - accompanied by an unpleasant yearning sensation.

So today I am concentrating on being aware of my true feelings. Given I am eating 3 good meals a day, with plenty of fibre and protein - I should only be feeling truly hungry just before a meal. If I have eaten my planned food, and still want more - that is desire. Have a cup of tea or a glass of water. Tidy up the kitchen. By then, the full effect of my recently consumed protein/fibre will have taken effect - goodbye desire.

And if I want food between meals, then that is a craving. But I don't need to give into it.

Exercise wise, I did really well on the weekend. I will try to do what I can in the next few days before the holiday - but I wont be able to get away for a decent spell.
Food wise I was a bit slack over the weekend. I gained 2.5kgs (5 lbs) in 2 days - of which some will be water weight. Next 2 days I am going to be eating well ahead of Wed official weekly weigh in.

I bought some new walking shoes for NZ - and hubby is going to support me to get out as much as I want to.
My mother in law was complaining about cooking - so I see a real opportunity when we are in NZ to step up and make some healthy meals. Some big pots of soup for a start.

Have a great day!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEAUTIFUL_REINA 8/12/2012 7:39PM

    Good points., I must start eating when I am experiencing true hunger and not at other times. You could add a fruit or veggie snack in there a couple of times tho

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WATERMELLEN 8/12/2012 7:18PM

    Hunger is not an emergency. Hunger is a signal that I"m going to enjoy my next (scheduled) meal even more! Thin people experience hunger every day. Hunger is normal and desirable. I don't need to eat "preventatively" just in case I might get hungry!! There will be healthy food available when it's time to eat again.

Oh, yeah. One of the MAIN(taining) things I learned from Beck that has helped me the most . . . and about which I need to continue to remind myself over and over again!

My "big pot of soup" this week: brown rice, broth, canned tomatoes, celery, carrots, onion, green beans, corn, a little chicken, chick peas seasoned with rosemary, sage, thyme. It's great!! Your MIL will be so glad to have some cooking help!

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