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WILLOWBROOK5's Recent Blog Entries

Excellent First Meeting with Dietitian

Monday, December 03, 2012

So a mere 21 months after embarking on a healthier lifestyle, I finally decided to see a dietitian about improving the overall quality of my diet. I did this with some trepidation because my very limited experience with dietitians has been all about restrictions, what you SHOULD eat and what you MUST avoid. I am not much (as in not at all) for following a restrictive food plan. The main thing Iíve done since March 2011 is to limit calories and sodium. In the past few months, I have also increased protein and fat grams to assist with losing increasingly hard to shed pounds. But then I started to worry I was getting too much protein.

Fortunately, I found a dietitian, Susan, who sounded very positive and encouraging on her web page and I did a brief interview with her by phone before setting an appointment. I knew we would be a good fit when she said the minute people say they are never going to eat certain foods, she feels they are setting themselves up to feeling deprived and going back to harmful ways of eating. Another good sign was when I said every time I read how carbs were evil and sugar was death, it made me want to go eat a big piece of cake, she laughed and said sheíd be right there with me. At any rate, her approach is to individualize the plan based on what each person is currently doing, incorporating the foods that they enjoy and want to eat.

Our first appointment was over an hour and a half during which Susan asked a bunch of questions about what I typically eat and how my approach works for me. Protein bars have been a very big staple in my diet and lately Iíve added to yummy protein shakes to the rotation. I have no desire to give either up, but would like to add in some more ďwholeĒ foods. In addition, I want to have a better handle on the number of carbs, protein and fat I should eat each day. SP Guidelines give me really huge ranges for each category. I am usually in those ranges, but what does it mean? There are so many opinions on what to eat, so much conflicting research out there, that I wanted an expert to offer some guidance. Lastly, I am in the process of figuring out what my maintenance range of calories will and could use some assistance there as well.

Susan looked a little alarmed when I told her I wanted to nudge my maintenance weight range down a bit more. Iím sure her concern is not that I am wasting away (despite what my mother and some others insist) but because the lower my weight, the fewer calories I will be able to eat to maintain it, given my height (short), age (older by the minute), gender and sedentary job (slumped in front of a computer). So she asked why I wanted to be a lower weight and I told her partly it was I just liked the numbers better. But more importantly, with my knees being severely arthritic, I honestly feel the lighter I can be, the longer I can delay knee replacement with my goal of scheduling the surgery as Never.

We didnít spend much time quibbling about what my weight should be, but she did state her calculations were based on me being 130. Currently, I am hovering a pound or two under that. Susan compared how much a person can eat to a checking account. The vast majority of people do not have unlimited funds so the amount of money they can take out is dependent on what they have in their account. Likewise, the vast majority of us have only a certain amount of food we can eat without running into trouble. Instead of bounced checks, overdrawing on our calories results in weight gain. The trick, Susan said, is to find the balance between over-spending so that you have problems and being too frugal so you arenít really enjoying what you have available.

I liked that analogy a lot. Susan calculated that my maintenance range, or calorie account is 1500-1700 which is a bit below what SP suggests of 1600 -1950. Since Iíve been losing weight at 1600, I imagine my calories will be more around 1700 or above, unless I manage to get down to 125 (my latest secret goal), which may reduce my daily intake a bit. The ranges she gave narrowed protein to a target that makes much more sense to me rather than the huge range SP offers. The range for fat is a bit higher and carbs a bit lower and much narrower than SPís. I am comfortable with these ranges and feel they can be achieved with only a little extra effort on my part. As I always aim for very achievable goals, that made me happy.

Susan noted, and I agree, that I am very much about numbers. I like to record grams and calories rather than food exchanges. After all this time, that is how I think as far as planning and tracking my food. She included a few days worth of suggested meals and snacks as a starting point. It really seems pretty easy to incorporate. Today is the first day I am trying the full plan (weekends I am active, happy and relaxed so tend to eat less and like it that way).

The biggest challenge for me will be planning snacks into my day. Susan felt I went too long between meals (4-8 hours), and this contributed to my urges to mindlessly eat. I can usually beat back those urges, but they arenít much fun. She suggested a snack of fruit and nuts at around 3 or 4 would help me feel less like Godzilla rampaging through my kitchen in search of tiny Tokyo residents when I arrived home at 6 (my words, not hers). Best of all, she made sure that I can continue to incorporate my much loved protein and fiber bars and the protein shakes I now adore into my daily eating plans.

I will meet with her in a few weeks to go over how this plan is working. My biggest curiosity is about how the snacks and a slightly larger breakfast will fit into my days. I decided I do not need to wolf down a huge lunch and then wait 7 or 8 hours for dinner. I can spread the food out a bit and see if that ends up being something Iím comfortable with. Right now I am watching the clock (1 hour, two minutes until an apple and cashews, LOL) but I am guessing snacks will feel more natural with some practice. A smaller dinner and snack a bit later also will be quite a change for me.

I am happy I finally got around to seeing a dietitian and that I chose one who is such a good fit for me. I feel more confident about what ranges I need to stay in and hope to run into fewer urges to mindlessly eat. Plus, it is great to have someone both knowledgeable and flexible to work with me as I fine-tune my diet. I really appreciate Susanís positive attitude and encouragement and am relieved that she was not appalled by my diet.

I do believe this is a significant new step in my healthy lifestyle and one that will increase my comfort and ease in maintenance.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PINKIE78 12/15/2012 3:22PM

    Thanks for sharing all of this. Sounds amazing and gives me some helpful things to think about. Best wishes!!

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ARTROSSIE 12/13/2012 3:08PM

  Hi my name is Rossie Istarted sparks but stopped I have trouble with computers. I want to start again in the New Year. You are the first person I have spoken with on a computer. Are you real? I would like to congradulate you. I am impessed about your story. Thank you for giving me something to say when food is given? And all the candy I get at Christmas?

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PYNETREE 12/13/2012 8:56AM

    emoticon Thanks for sharing. I would love to work with a dietician. Smart move on your part.

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LRSILVER 12/13/2012 8:05AM

    Wow. I think the advice you got was spot on. It sounds like you have a great plan in place. I hope it works out for you and your lifestyle.

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KANOE10 12/8/2012 8:14AM

    She sounds like an excellent advisor. Good luck with your new plan. I eat a large breakfast also...and have nuts for a snack in the afternoon. It helps.

Thanks for sharing all of her tips.


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CHRISTINASP 12/7/2012 1:03PM

    Thank you for sharing. It's interesting to me because I also recently started seeing a dietician, be it for different reasons. It's nice indeed to be able to talk to someone about topics like this.

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SLENDERELLA61 12/5/2012 7:32PM

    I've been thinking about seeing an RD and I'm very appreciative of your blog telling about your experience. Best wishes for increasing health!!

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1CRAZYDOG 12/5/2012 4:20PM

    Good job! Sounds like a successful meeting and you'll get a good plan together!

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NUOVAELLE 12/4/2012 2:30AM

    Susan sounds like a very caring dietitian with an approach that is professional and friendly at the same time. I like the checking account analogy. I've used a similar one while losing weight. I always thought of meal planning like going shopping with a wallet that has a certain amount of money - mind you, no credit cards allowed!
I hope her guidance helps you work everything out. Good luck!

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MJZHERE 12/3/2012 8:26PM

    So glad to hear she turned out to be a good fit. Sounds like the visit was a real confidence booster. Snacks are very important to me - I eat smaller meals but I have a snack inbetween. The timing on the snacking varies - especially the one between lunch and dinner. I have it when I start getting hungry - if I go too long after I am hungry before I snack, then I tend to eat much more at dinner. Good for you for going to someone.

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BIGPAWSUP 12/3/2012 7:19PM

    How awesome for you! I'm so happy this is working out for you. You really found a good fit.

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TINAJANE76 12/3/2012 4:36PM

    That sounds like a fantastic plan! Good for you for working to develop a manageable maintenance plan with a professional--and one with a sense of humor to boot. I absolutely love her Godzilla reference and will definitely have to steal that.

Good luck implementing your plan and keep us posted on how everything's going.

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MANDELOVICH 12/3/2012 2:34PM

    Wow Liz, sounds awesome! I'd love to have such a meeting with a dietician to tell me just what to do!!

I hope it goes really well for you. You are so positive and have such a can-do spirit, and you've been doing so well with your weight loss, I'm sure it will be great!

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SQUIRRELLYONE 12/3/2012 2:33PM

    RDs are a wonderful resource to consult whether you need to make big changes or little ones! I'm glad you spoke to one who works well with you!

You'll get used to snacking, I promise! Then you'll discover the joys that one teenie little snack can give you!

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    So glad that you took the step to get the guidance that you felt that you needed!
Thanks so much for sharing!

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"Love Never Ends"

Sunday, November 25, 2012

I was going to blog about Thanksgiving, how my long weekend went (great), the wonderful walks I had in the forest preserves where I often hiked when I lived in the Chicago suburbs, and maybe share some thoughts about how challenging this time of year is for those of us trying to lose or maintain weight.

But instead I keep thinking of the end of my walk in the woods yesterday. We were almost back to the car and I remembered being on that stretch of path with my dad. He didn't do much in the way of hiking since he had a partially paralyzed leg from Polio. And for the last 10 years of his life, he dealt with Post-Polio Syndrome and Congestive Heart Failure, making walking harder and harder. So that trip together to the Forest Preserve was a long time ago and not very typical of times I spent with him.

Yet, as I traveled up the trail through the starkly beautiful November woods, I thought of walking with my dad long ago and how much I miss him. And even though we probably only went down that path together once, it felt like yesterday he walked it with me a second time.

My dad passed away four years ago today. I thought of him some more this afternoon as I watched the movie "Lincoln." The storyline was partially based on the book Team of Rivals, which my dad read and thought highly of. I think he would have enjoyed the movie. I wish I could discuss it with him, to hear his thoughts, insights and dry sense of humor.

So, anyway, back to things Spark. Let's all take good care of ourselves so we can spend as much time with those we love in this life. And let's not take for granted our loved ones but enjoy them as much as we can for as long as we can. In the scheme of things, at the end, love is what is important. Good days, bad days, the holidays (good or bad) come and go. Love never ends.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

L1ZB3TH354 12/13/2012 8:34PM

    My dad has been gone 15 years now, he passed on my birthday. It is always a bitter sweet day for me. I was a daddy's girl. I still remember the walks we took together on Carlsbad Beach, CA. I have also lost my mom and my only son. Your blog touched my heart. I miss them all, everyday. I started exercising to relieve the depression I felt from losing my son 9 years ago. He was only 18. I still find things that reminds me of him everyday. He will always live in my heart. The holidays are especially hard. Through this journey I lost 50 lbs., but have gained back 15, I am fighting hard to lose those 15 again. Good luck with your journey.

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BEBOP4ME 12/13/2012 2:24PM

    Sorry to hear about your Dad! I lost my Mother almost 8 years ago and I still miss her dearly. Now as a mother myself, I wish time and time again I could ask her how she raised 8 kids so lovingly. I lost my Mother too young also. She also had post polio syndrome, made worse by smoking for many years and lastly by radiation for breast cancer. I still believe that is what hastened her death most of all, as she went from no oxygen to full time oxygen soon after her treatments ended.

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MANDELOVICH 12/3/2012 2:35PM

    I'm so sorry to hear about your dad. Love always lives inside of us!

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CARRAND 12/3/2012 8:21AM

    What a lovely blog. I talked to my Dad yesterday. He is 98 years old (almost 99) and he lives in a VA home in Iowa, so I don't see him often. Sometimes when I talk to him he's really confused about where he is. His short term memory is almost entirely gone. But yesterday he seemed calm and happy, so it was a good conversation.
I know you must miss your Dad a lot. I'm glad you were able to remember him during your walk in the woods.

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CLAIREINPARIS 12/2/2012 1:49AM

    A beautiful, meaningful blog. Thank you.

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HAKAPES 12/1/2012 2:10PM

    Well said. Thanks for this!
Oliver (from Maintenance group)

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BROWNCOFIDDLER 11/30/2012 5:37PM

    Bravo on another wonderful, insightful blog. It's so true. It's this time of year especially that I so miss my parents and all of those family members (and my dogs) who have gone before me. We have to cherish every minute and take every opportunity to share time with them while both we and they are still here. It's so important to make memories. Thank you. emoticon

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SUSIEMT 11/30/2012 11:49AM

    I loved this blog! It brought back some good memories for me of my dad. Keep up the good work!

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KANOE10 11/30/2012 8:12AM

    Lovely blog. Love does not end. We need to stay healthy and be around our precious loved ones as long as we can. emoticon

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NUOVAELLE 11/30/2012 4:41AM

    People only die when we forget about them. In that sense, your dad lives through your memories and your love for him.
Thank you for such a moving blog with a really wonderful message.

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MILLIE5522 11/29/2012 2:12PM

    My Dad died of heart failure too. He is always in my heart. I particularly think of him when I am out walking with my dog in the countryside. My Dad was a farmer and loved working in the fields. We are so lucky to have good memories of our Dads. emoticon

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ADRIENALINE 11/29/2012 1:16PM

    You certainly have a knack for writing, For me it's my sister and she's with me all of the time.

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THOMASINA57 11/28/2012 5:07PM

    Well said! I think of my Dad alot and all the good times we shared!

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ILOVEMALI 11/27/2012 3:51PM

    Thanks for this timely message. You are correct -- love never ends.

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BIGPAWSUP 11/26/2012 7:20PM

    That is wonderful that you could feel your dad with you again. Such a blessing and so much love.

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MJZHERE 11/26/2012 3:08PM

    This is a wonderful message. Nothing is more precious than time with loved ones

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SADWHITEWOLF 11/26/2012 10:34AM

    I lost my Dad when I was 18 (heart attack), this time of year actually. I would give anything for a conversation with him.
His and my best friends (both due to heart attacks brough on by being overweight, smoking, and out of shape) death give me motivation to keep at this.

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TORTISE110 11/26/2012 6:03AM

    Such a moving blog. I would give a lot for another afternoon with my Dad. emoticon

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3016DEBRA 11/25/2012 8:39PM

  emoticon You are so right on!

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TRAVELGRRL 11/25/2012 7:37PM

    What a great blog and wonderful message! I know your dad is very proud of the kind and gentle soul you are. emoticon

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-AMANDA79- 11/25/2012 7:21PM

    Missing my Dad a lot lately too. I think they call it anniversary grief... emoticon

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Not Gonna Relax -- Gonna Beat the Odds

Sunday, November 18, 2012

I've had a few interesting comments made to me recently.
1. "Oh, come on, it's the holidays. You can relax a little now."
2. "So? What's the problem? " (At a buffet meal, when asked why I passed on eating the flank steak and I said because it was covered in creamy sauce)
3. "I'm going to drop off a piece of a dessert I made. You can eat it or throw it out. "

The first two comments, I simply looked at the persons with my best "Seriously?" expression and the subject was dropped. With the friend who told me she was bringing by a dessert for me, I asked her "Why would you do that? It's just going to make me feel bad." When she asked what I meant, I explained I would feel bad throwing out her dessert that I no doubt would want to eat and I'd feel worse if I ate it. She immediately said, "Ok. I won't bring it over, then. "

I have a lot of support from the people in my life, but not always a lot of understanding of the odds I face. They figure since I am now at my goal range, I can go back to eating "normally." They don't get that normal eating isn't my strong suit. Or the strong suit of lots of us, for that matter. And they really don't get how much the odds are against me to maintain my weight loss. When I tell them the most optimistic percentage I've seen that people can maintain their weight loss is 20%, they are astonished. When I tell them I've seen that percentage cited as low as 5%, they gasp.

And gasp they should. Whether my chances are 20% or 5%, those aren't great odds, so I am very grateful for all the knowledge and information I have gained here at SP from members and articles. For example, there has been a lot of discussion about the study on behaviors of successful maintainers. I'm doing my best to copy as many of those behaviors as I can. Behaviors like:
-Tracking food daily
- Burning a minimum of 2000 calories per week in exercise
- Weighing daily
- Keeping eating out to a minimum

You know what behavior isn't on that list? Relaxing! So, no I'm not going to relax this holiday season, eat like the average, clueless American and gain weight that I fought so hard to lose. Those last 10 lbs were killers to get rid of and I want them to stay gone. And no, I'm not going to make stupid choices like the flank steak with the mystery sauce. I was already stuck at an all day work retreat. There was no point in making myself more miserable by wondering how many calories I just consumed.

These are such early days for my maintenance. I reached my original goal September 1st and then decided to lose a bit more which I accomplished at the end of October. I'm still figuring out what my calorie range is! I'm not saying I am stressing about maintaining this weight. I'm not. I love being at this weight and how good I feel. I'm just being very careful as I add more calories. I know this is going to be a lifetime effort.

I'm thinking of maintaining as a new hobby or maybe a second job. One I am passionate about and that brings me amazing benefits like increased fitness, improved health and some really cute clothes.

Not something I am going to take for granted or get lazy about. So don't mind me if I don't relax about eating, exercising or my weight. I am beyond happy with my decisions and the results they bring.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUPERSYLPH 6/23/2013 11:37AM


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ELAINE725 4/3/2013 4:36PM

    Way to go! Keep up the GREAT work!!!

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SHIELDAC 1/28/2013 9:56AM


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SNOOPYANJ 1/13/2013 2:33PM

    Thanks so much for putting yourself out there & sharing!

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1954MARG 1/13/2013 9:02AM

  Well done. Maintenance is about deciding what your new habits for life are, weight loss is the first stage.

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ONSLOPIERRE 1/8/2013 9:39PM

  Thanks for your comments! I gained 40 pounds back of my original 70 pounds lost....because of listening to all of those people who said I needed to relax, not be perfect all the time, etc.

I am back on the wagon, and I am determined this time to get back to where I felt good about myself and was healthy.

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223DAISY 1/3/2013 3:35PM

    Stick with it! emoticon

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SERASARA 1/2/2013 5:12PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FLUTTER-BY)L( 12/30/2012 1:22AM

    Way to go. I think it is hard to be blunt with friends. However it helps them help us. If they want the best for us they will help. If not then they don't have our best interest at heart anyway.

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MCFITZ2 12/24/2012 3:46PM

    You and do it and more importantly, you WILL do it. emoticon

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AGAPEJOY 12/24/2012 1:10AM

    emoticon Very encouraging!!


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WRITINGDIVA1 12/23/2012 4:20PM

    Good for you on 1) reaching your goal and 2) demonstrating the need to maintain the weight loss once you reach it. And of course, good for you for confronting your (possibly unwittingly) saboteurs. When we make changes, people love for us to become the "old" person we once were. Good for you for embracing the new you and sticking up for her!

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AMANDEES76 12/21/2012 11:06AM

    AWESOME way to put that. Sometimes we have to educate those that aren't on this journey because all they see is the outside of it. You are doing great and I'm sure you will succeed at maintaining.

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YICHE12 12/20/2012 9:58PM

    Keep up the great work! emoticon

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ARUSHING2 12/19/2012 11:34PM

  Great quest that you are on. Thanks for sharing your story with us. Very good blog. Happy Holidays - take care and enjoy.

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MONAMAC1 12/19/2012 4:49PM

    You go girl! emoticon

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LESCANTOONOW 12/19/2012 10:11AM



MS. L. (LESCANTOONOW) emoticon mmmm emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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YBOKANE 12/19/2012 9:58AM

  Congratulations on your weight loss. I am just over half where I would like to be and I know that keeping it off will be the hardest part of this journey for me. You had an excellent post - one I need to remind myself of all daily now and in the future. Keep up good work.

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SRULISHAFFREN 12/19/2012 1:20AM

  What a fantastic post! Thank you for sharing, it was really the kind of motivational kick in the pants I needed right now!

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SJKENT1 12/18/2012 6:49PM

    Diligence will win this battle.

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MISSCALFO 12/18/2012 11:24AM

    Thank you for sharing! I need to stick to my guns too... Some people still don't care even when you tell them all this and I have to realize that these people maybe just don't want to see me succeed. So thank you so much for staying dedicated, this will help me too! :) emoticon

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TULAA3 12/18/2012 11:18AM

    Thanks for posting! Not many make it to where you are, and so it's nice to hear what it's like from that side. Be strong, you can keep it up!

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MIZINFO2003 12/17/2012 8:33PM

  I think your attitude is wonderful!

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PORTIAWILLIS 12/17/2012 3:03PM

    Thanks for the input. I have lost 100lbs 20lbs at a time and usually gain it and more back with etch diet. I had not heard those stastics about maintaining my loss but sure is true for me. I have every intention that this time will be different. With spark people I am learning so much more about myself and being more open about my problems. You can only hide for so long. I'm tire of hiding from myself and others. It is time to take control of my life and not let others control me.

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222NICHOLE 12/17/2012 11:41AM

    emoticon Thanks for this post. It helps me remember that I can and should stand up to people and stick with my goals rather than let them convince me that one little thing won't be that bad. You are a great example. Thank you.

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ILOVEROSES 12/17/2012 7:43AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HEYGIRLG 12/17/2012 12:54AM

  Good for you! You are an example all of us need to follow.

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MICHELLE_391 12/16/2012 11:01PM

    emoticon and emoticon !!!

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TKRYSTINA 12/16/2012 6:34PM

  emoticon emoticon I really like your blog.

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MOREPOUNDS 12/16/2012 3:53PM

    Keep up the good work your doing!

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CYDNEYLEECH 12/16/2012 3:38PM

    I understand how you feel. When I reach my goal weight, everyone will know that it is is because of a life change, not simply a one time diet.

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LYNNIERN 12/16/2012 1:12PM

    Excellent, excellent blog, thanks for the four tips to get through not only the holiday season but every day!!

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REGSHAR 12/16/2012 10:04AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WINEALITTLE 12/16/2012 9:30AM

    Admirable perspective and determination. Keep going strong! emoticon

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FROMNDTOGA 12/15/2012 5:43PM

    Good for you for sticking to your guns on the Spark People plan.
emoticon emoticon

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GBSLIM 12/15/2012 5:03PM

    Congratulations on reaching your goal! And for having your blog featured in the "Community Highlight".
This is a very informative blog. I think the behaviors of successful maintainers you mentioned are good for all those trying to lose pounds.
Thanks for sharing.
Best wishes for your continued success. emoticon

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ANGELN325 12/15/2012 4:49PM

    WTG! You are so right. It's one of the hardest challenges. My dad's side of the family has the obesity gene, but my Mom's side does not. It's very hard when I'm there because they get to eat "normal" and I can not. This Christmas my game plan is to eat very slowly so that when they ask if I want "this' or "that", I can point to my plate and respond, "I'm good. Thanks." Or "Ya...I was going to try that later."

Comment edited on: 12/15/2012 4:50:12 PM

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DALID414 12/15/2012 3:59PM

    I don't plan on telaxing either. It's what got me in this mess in the first place.

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HOLLYM48 12/15/2012 3:24PM

    For me it isn't about achieving weight loss, it is about achieving a different lifestyle along the way. Once the weight is gone, unless you have gone thru this and still going thru it people just don't understand. They may think those few extra pounds just don't matter but to me, they matter. I want to be the best that I can be for me and for my family. It doesn't mean I won't enjoy the splurge every once in awhile, but that is all it is, once in a blue moon. We work too hard and have learned to much to ever go back down the road again. Good for you for sticking up for yourself. Don't we all wish we could eat anything anytime we want, but most people can't. We just learn to eat different and I for one am so happy that I have.!!!!!!
Great job reaching your goals, good luck with maintenance! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ROSARIODLT 12/15/2012 3:23PM


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PINKIE78 12/15/2012 3:15PM

    Awesome! I agree with you. Thanks for your inspiration and wisdom. Congrats on getting to where you are and working hard to stay there. Folks around me don't seem to "get it" with the desserts this time of year. I am grateful for one understanding friend who, upon seeing that someone had given me a box of candy, encouraged me to get rid of it saying, "You don't need that." That encouragement was an awesome gift.

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LAINYC 12/15/2012 1:06PM


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MSEMILY88 12/15/2012 9:24AM

    Bravo! During the holiday season it can be so hard to stick to healthy eating habits. Many times people mean well but they just don't get it. You are an inspiration. Keep up the good work emoticon

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JIBBIE49 12/15/2012 9:15AM

    emoticon Great to see you blog featured in the Spark Mail.

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MYBABYGIRLS 12/15/2012 8:42AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FLORNH 12/15/2012 8:07AM

    Fantastic Blog! And so true!

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CONCHA77 12/15/2012 7:47AM

    Your blog caught my eye this morning and I am glad it did. Thanks for sharing!

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NANETTEWARN 12/15/2012 7:45AM

  Go get em girl !!!! emoticon

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JULESMARIETTE 12/15/2012 6:59AM

  I feel the same, like it's my new hobby. I know I will have to count calories the rest of my life in order to maintain. Thanks for sharing. It's nice to know there is someone else who feels the same. emoticon

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LEANMEAN2 12/15/2012 6:32AM

    Thanks for sharing

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Binge :-/

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Monday, I binged for the first time since I began my weight loss journey in March 2011. I've had a few days where I went too high in my calories, over-eating a bit, some binge quality to my eating but not a true binge for over 18 months. It was a pretty good run.

I'm still not entirely sure where it all went off the rails on Monday. It was a stressful day at work, but I have plenty of those. It was an especially long day at work, which I rarely have, and I had brought food for lunch and dinner with me. Before 2, I had eaten all my food already and I knew it was mainly stress related. Still, I figured I'd make it through the long day and have a small meal when I got home of about 200 calories and be ok.

In addition to the stress eating, I did have a good amount of actual hunger. I've been very hungry the past couple of weeks for some reason. When I finally got home, it was after 8. I briefly considered riding my exercise bike for 15 minutes because I recently discovered that helps me feel less like eating too much. But I was tired, I was really hungry and that morning I had done a vigorous hour on the the treadmill. I figured I could skip the bike for the night.

And then after my small meal, I started binging. I didn't even binge on anything approaching delicious or indulgent because I am pretty careful what I let into the house. I knew I was binging. I knew I should stop and yet I didn't until I felt fairly ill.

At that point, I went to bed and had a bad night's sleep.

Recovery strategy: I kept to my new habit of weighing myself every morning and was up 2 lbs. I expected something like that and accepted it. I went for my usual hour walk that morning. I ate very lightly all day and only when I felt truly hungry. I also only ate "real" food, skipping any of the protein bars I like and which were part of the binge the night before. I enjoyed the food I ate and didn't want to any more than I consumed. Then, at my acupuncture appointment (for my arthritis), I asked for some help with appetite control. I figured it might help.

What I learned: While I don't fully understand why this happened after so many months of not giving in to the desire to binge, I have come to a few conclusions. While I definitely do NOT recommend anyone binge, this experience was so unpleasant, even as I was eating (when you'd think there'd be some enjoyment) that right now any idea of over-eating does not appeal to me. That might prove helpful heading into the holidays! :-)

I am impressed by the way my body was able to recover fairly quickly from the assault it suffered. I am renewed in my desire to treat my body with respect, kindness and excellent care. I am not going to gain weight and put increased pressure on my knees. I am going to maintain in my weight range (which I haven't left, despite the 2lb gain) and keep fitting into all my cute new clothes.

I will not go so many hours without eating, especially when I am stressed. I am going to be very careful about what food I bring with me to work since I am much more prone to mindless eating there than I am at home. I'm not going to bring any cereal into the house for now since the binge started with a fairly bland cereal. It is just too easy for me to grab a handful, or two or four of cereal.

And I'm going to ride my darn exercise bike or do some form of exercise for at least 15 minutes the next time I feel like over-eating. I'm going to continue reading Full Filled, which addresses emotional eating and our relationship with food.

So, the binge was a really bad experience but I feel like I have learned a great deal from it, including how much I do not want to go through another binge or any serious over-eating. I love being at this weight. I love how I feel and how much I can accomplish. In a way, the binge has renewed my commitment to healthy living.

I say that, fully aware there will always be some part of me that wants to binge, to treat my body like a garbage disposal. I'm now a little wiser, I hope, in how I can keep that part from taking over again. Wish me luck!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MADERINERUE 12/4/2012 8:36PM

    Dang, this was perfect and timely. Thank you.


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ADRIENALINE 11/29/2012 1:22PM

    Another great post! Sounds like you really have it together!

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MOBYCARP 11/29/2012 6:48AM

    I haven't had cold cereal in the house for years, but your blog brings to mind an advantage of hot cereal: I prepare it in single serving portions. When I'm done, it's more effort to fix another bowl of oatmeal or grits or steel cut oats than just dumping more cold cereal from the box into the leftover milk, then adding more milk.

I'm not sure how much this has helped me lose and maintain, as I never thought about it before now; but I offer the observation in case you might find it useful.

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MJZHERE 11/19/2012 9:44PM

    Wow, you really learned a lot from this one experience. Great job reflecting and being proactive with plans. You definitely sound a whole lot "wiser" and I believe you are!

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KANOE10 11/17/2012 9:46AM

    You sound like you have learned some positive things about yurself and are ready to stay on your healthy track. I well know the feeling of eating until you are sick and spending a bad night of sleep do eating. I also know when you are stressed and tired, your old habits resurface.

Great job on taking positive steps to stay motivated and focused.

I know you will be successful!
emoticon emoticon

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SADWHITEWOLF 11/16/2012 8:57AM

    I also have been really struggling to control my food intake. I not only in fighting binge eating urges for emotion reason but I feel Actual hunger very frequently lately.
I am often hungrier in the fall. I don't know if it is psychological or instinct.
Congratulations on counteracting your binge so quickly. Seems like you have good recovery and preventative strategy!

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KOOKYCOOKIE 11/15/2012 10:16AM

    First of all, way to go on not bingeing for so long! Thank you so much for sharing this, I have problems with bingeing a lot (my longest run without bingeing is my current one..4 days).

Good luck with everything, you can do it! :)

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CHRISTINASP 11/15/2012 8:23AM

    A wonderful post, thank you for sharing.
To me it's amazing that you managed to not binge for soooo long. Maybe if you have the time, post a bit about how you did that!
I can relate to the long day, eating all you brought too soon, etc.. I had days like that last year when I had to travel quite a bit to get to a training I was doing. After bingeing once I got home at night a few times, I consciously started picturing myself going through the day, and arriving home feeling content for not overeating. That helped.
Another thing that I did was make sure I'd eat slowly and really taste my foods. Being away from home, eating with other people and so on really distracted me from realizing I was actually having food! So that contributed to the tendency to binge, also, I think.

Comment edited on: 11/15/2012 8:25:29 AM

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FEB_SHOWERS16 11/15/2012 6:57AM

    The lessons learned seemed extremely positive! You have a great attitude!

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MELLIE1030 11/14/2012 7:55PM

    good luck to you.

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BOOKWORM27S 11/14/2012 7:41PM

    My eating has been out of control lately, too. I think it is the stress of the upcoming holidays and the cooler weather that has effected me.

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A-NEW-NURSE 11/14/2012 7:36PM

    Good luck. I always have binge cravings. So far I have not succombed (but I am only 3 weeks in)

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Obsessed with fit

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Ok, this might sound shallow. And when you look at my photos, which are mostly at the beach where I am dressed so as not to care about sunblock stains, you could easily be thinking, "Say what?" But for a while now, I have really been fairly obsessed with wanting my clothes to fit, if not perfectly, then pretty darn close. I have low tolerance for baggy clothes. A little loose is fine. Baggy makes me look sad and worn. Not that I am a fan of tight, mind you!

This obsession has cost me a good deal of money though I look for bargains as much as I can. I honestly never expected to land at a size 6 and so overbought 8's and 10's. I think after all the years of wearing clothes that ended with X, clothes that covered two sizes, featured a lot of elastic and I still sometimes didn't fit into them, I now need my clothes to fit very, very nicely.

It is sort of like a little kid clutching a favorite toy for security. My clothes are my transitional object as I adapt to my new size and look. A way to reassure myself that I have accomplished more than I ever dreamed I could when I began this journey. I'll never argue that I am especially deep. This blog no doubt proves that point, LOL.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BELADINAH 12/13/2012 10:59AM

    So I guess I'm not the only one!! I've gone down from a 12 to a 2 in six months (and have had to purchase a few new things on the way down) and now I'm a clothes horse. I worked very hard for my new figure and don't like wearing the styles I used to wear. All of a sudden, I love pencil skirts and close-fitting jackets and sweaters. I've spent more money on clothes in the past two months than I have in the last few years. I kind of feel like I deserve it - and yeah, maybe it's a bit shallow to focus on this so much, but at the same time, it just feels good to look at myself in a mirror and like what I see. It's still a fairly new experience!! I still am astonished that my thighs no longer rub together when I walk (I actually never thought it would be possible). So wearing a slim-fitting outfit is a way to celebrate all the positive changes in my life. And I totally relate to making those mistakes at first - buying a size too big even though it's way below what you used to wear. It took a while before I actually believed I was a true size 2.

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MJZHERE 11/19/2012 9:48PM

    So it's not just me! I, too, want clothes to fit - not big, baggy (even had a hard time not wearing my "good" jeans hiking cause all the rest are too large). This is new for me - mostly wore clothes too large always (except swim suits) and it did take me a while to feel ok in clothes that fit. Kanoe10, you and I can all shop together!

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LJR4HEALTH 11/14/2012 4:14PM

    Well fitting clothes is part of a healthy attitude towards self I would not say its obsessing but more of a having self confidence i still have not gotten there I still like baggy ot hide me in though I am getting to the point where I am tired of wearing elastic bands and now buying better fitting clothes

You have a very healthy mind set YOu have done great

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LADYPIXEL 11/12/2012 10:27PM

    The sad thing for me is that I've had a tendency, over the years, to buy clothes to 'remember' something... like the special Leap Day Disneyland shirt I've got that is now baggy on me. Oops. I guess I'll end up keeping those 'special clothes' to sleep in once I've lost more weight, but I know how you feel!

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CHRISTINASP 11/12/2012 10:01AM

    Well, I can imagine that wearing clothes that fit contribute to a feeling of wellbeing. And if you feel well, you will be better company! So there's a good reason to look for a good fit!

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KANOE10 11/12/2012 8:57AM

    I did the same thing. I bought a lot of clothes in 8 and 10..and now many of them are too big. Like you I do not want to wear baggy clothes. I also have spent lots of money on clothes ..looking for bargains. Clothes are a transitional object as one adapts to one's new body.

Enjoy your new clothes and the new you! We can shop together.

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