Wednesday, February 02, 2011
There is a heck of a storm blowing outside our windows: thunder and lightning in the winter time, snow blowing hard and sticking in the window screens.
And I've got a little bit of an internal storm going on too because I know: today is about pushing further on the "sitting down while you eat" skill. And there is no way this is going to feel "natural".
Yesterday I did mindlessly pop two blueberries into my mouth while standing up and preparing my dessert after dinner (blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and fat free sugar free vanilla yogout). Calorie count? negligible. Better than a big hunk of cheddar cheese? or a heaping spoonful of peanut butter? Yes yes yes: give myself credit. But this is at the heart of learning to think like a thin person for me and the key impediment to maintaining without yo-yoing.
So: sitting down exclusively while eating requires more than just sitting down. I've got to:
--take small bites and chew slowly;
--finish chewing and swallowing each bite before putting more food on my fork or spoon;
--put my utensil down between every few bites and count to 10;
--take a sip of water every minute or two;
--above all: not to give in to the impulse (strong) to skip learning this skill: do it anyway!
OK, this will be tough tough tough for me. Today I'm to practice by eating my breakfast and my lunch alone. No conversation, no reading. I usually eat breakfast with my husband over the newspaper; it's storming so hard, our newspaper wasn't delivered today, which has to be a "sign from the universe" this matters!! I usually eat lunch with work colleagues while talking about work issues or life in general. Or catching up on professional reading. I do often eat dinner alone (or with Charlie) while reading another whack of newspapers. You're seeing where this is going -- a whole lot of mindless eating even when I'm sitting down!!
Lost my first version of this blog and have had to rewrite it; second little sign from the universe this matters!!
All right then. Here goes breakfast!! Sitting down. Slow. And mindful.
Tuesday, February 01, 2011
Hmmm. Beck is telling me to give myself credit every time I "engage in a positive eating behaviour": such as, sitting down while I eat.
I did manage to sit down while I ate absolutely everything yesterday. Yay me!! Weird, though -- particularly while eating my tiny container of yogourt at work for mid afternoon snack.
So today I've got my "Give Myself Credit" card tucked into my purse with my other Response Cards. I've reread my reasons for losing weight. I've slipped an elastic band on my wrist to remind myself to give myself credit. I've had (and tracked) my breakfast of oatmeal, flax seed, cinnamon, raisins, 1% milk.
I've told myself it's OK to praise myself, just as I would praise a good friend and give her credit for adopting new diet behaviours. "Good job". "Great". Even though I haven't done much deserving of praise so far: eating sitting down, one day. Big deal. (Feel a bit like I'm speaking to my dog, Charlie -- "good boy". But after all, Charlie gets a lot of praise: and Charlie has become the best dog ever. So: must work!!).
Actually eating sitting down IS a pretty big deal for me -- and will continue to be difficult.
So: good job!! With feeling: GOOD JOB!!
Monday, January 31, 2011
This has to be one of the most important new techniques for me. I will struggle with it. And I've already made myself a Response Card: SIT DOWN TO EAT.
My "sabotaging thought" about this is, of course, that it's not my fault because it's "automatic". But eating is not automatic. It's not like my heart beating. I decide to eat, and I decide not to eat. Standing up is not an option. There is no choice. Not even "just this once".
I am going to notice and I am going to savour every bite that I eat.
Sitting down. Every time. Every bite.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
Day Two: I've picked two reasonable diets. The primary diet plan will be to continue nutrition tracking on Spark, which I've been doing for some 20 months or so now: calories, carbs, proteins, fats and a whack of other nutrients including calcium, Vitamin C etc.
And in the alternative, if for some reason Spark nutrition tracker stops working, I'll sign up for a course of home delivered meals from Healthy Heart, Toronto based food service endorsed by the heart and stroke people -- so not prefab, but low in sodium, without preservatives, portion and calorie controlled and very delicious actually.
The Healthy Heart plan is relatively expensive so I don't want to go there again -- I had used it a couple time before I found Spark!! But I do know it works, particularly as re-education concerning portion size. So that's my secondary plan.
I've considered modifications to my primary plan -- because it's important to plan modifications in advance, not just on impulse. I'll be planning for 1 square Lindt 85% cocoa chocolate a day after workout and two snacks -- probably low fat sugar free yogourt most of the time -- mid morning and mid afternoon at work. Both modifications are incorporated into my calorie range.
I won't be skipping breakfast or loosening up my plan on the weekends . . . I will be sticking with my plan today even though I'm attending a party this afternoon. Now that should be a bit of a challenge but the hostess is well aware that I watch my weight carefully. She is also a breast cancer survivor, and I can be sure she won't enagage in any "food pushing" activities, so it's up to me.
I'm confident that either or both of these plans would meet with the approval of a "health care professional": didn't "consult" this time but have done so in the past.
I've read my list of reasons to lose weight and will do so again!! I have them on a Beck card in my wallet and will review them just before I get out of the car at the party address!!
Going out for a cross country ski this morning . . . yesterday's was glorious in full sparkly sunlight and fresh snow, today is soft grey with drifting snowflakes and will be lovely in a different way.
Saturday, January 29, 2011
We don't use the word "diet" much at SP -- right? Because we're making life style changes and not temporarily depriving ourselves.
But I'm adopting the language of Judith S. Beck in her book, "The Beck Diet Solution, train your brain to think like a thin person". The incomparable SLENDERELLA has been blogging about Beck -- and got me totally intrigued. So I bought the book and the workbook, have read through both, gathered my tools (sticky notes, food scales/measuring cups, bathroom scales, index cards) and am ready to roar.
Beck doesn't provide a diet plan: she says any reasonable diet will work. She provides tools derived from cognitive psychology to train the brain so we can stick with that diet, or eating plan. There are two weeks of preparation before commencing a diet; she says that you would not sign up for a marathon and expect to be able to run it tomorrow, and similarly it makes no sense to launch right into a diet before learning how to stick with an eating plan for life.
The first step is to Review the Advantages of Dieting -- in a chart in the workbook -- ticking off the applicable ones.
Most important for me: to reduce the likelihood of recurrence of breast cancer.
But I ticked off 18 more from her list -- and also added that I want to be able to wear everything in my closet -- not just the 10s and the 8s but the challenging 6s --
I'd lost 80 pounds in 2001-2002 and kept it off, then gained 20 with the cancer dx in 2009: and took it off again in months with the support and resources of Spark People. And I've been consistently within that maintenance range and healthy BMI since September 2009, never once going over. SLENDERELLA's a maintainer too. And Beck is all about maintenance.
However, I've become concerned about how hard I have to struggle to stay within that maintenance range, and the number of times I've had to peel off the same 5 or so pounds. With a history of an estrogen positive tumour, even mild yo-yoing is not what I want. When I'm up in weight, I can't wear everything in my closet and that annoys me. With Beck, I'm hoping to explore the psychology of maintenance more thoroughly and feel in better control of the life long maintenance which is my goal. I want to be more confident that I am maintaining, rather than panicking with every fluctuation. I want to see whether I'd be more comfortable at a lower weight than my maintenance range.
Yup: I want to learn to think like a thin person!
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