Tuesday, August 28, 2012
I haven't blogged in a while and thought I would take a minute to take stock of where I am in my quest for health.
I just finished a challenge with the STOP team. I am co-leader of the STOP team and truly love all of my team mates. It is the most supportive group I have found on spark. We are a private spark team but if you are interested in joining just ask and I will send you an invite. Challenges tend to be 8-12 weeks long- usually right around 10 weeks. A new one starts next week and it should be a fun one.
Anyway, I started the challenge ready to go I was at 194 pounds and ready to drop some weight. Hoping to get back to the low 180's, high 170's. Well, that didn't happen. What did happen was that I gained weight. I spent most of the challenge (June to August) clinging to the 190's with all I had. I ended at 199.2. I have been as high as 199.8 on official weigh in days. On non weigh in days I have seen the scale go into the 2's. When I got back in the 1's I made a promise to myself that I was never going back to the 2's. I am trying with all my might to keep that promise. Except when I am not... sometimes I forget about promises and goals. Sometimes it is all just too much and I just don't care anymore. I want to eat what I want and I want to eat it now. I can be a real 2 year old from time to time. I had some rough times this summer. My head wasn't in the best place.
For reasons that are beyond me all of that seems to be lifting now. I am feeling good and ready to take on the challenge again. I have been here before and I am under no illusion that this feeling will last forever. I know ups and downs are part of life. I will have dark days again but for now I am going to enjoy every minute of it. For now my heart is filled with compassion and love for myself and others.
So I ask myself what will be different this time? Why will I succeed this time? I answer myself with: I don't really know. All I can do is my best at any given time. The key is to dig deep and really ask myself- is this my best? The biggest thing I lack is commitment. I know how I want to eat. It took me a year but I have decided on the road I want to take. For me that road is basically following Eat To Live. My goal for the immediate future is a plant based, vegan, gluten free diet. I am putting all my effort into making that happen. I am not saying I will never eat meat, dairy, or wheat again but I am saying I would like to save those foods for very rare, very special occasions. Dairy is the biggest no no for me because I have linked it to increasing my allergy symptoms. I am not sure gluten is a problem but I am willing to go without it for a while and see how I feel. I am not particularly attached to wheat so going without it is a more of an inconvenience than anything else. Meat in the form of chicken or fish I could take or leave. I do love steak and to a lesser degree turkey. I do miss having both on occasion.
The thing is I generally love the healthy plant based foods I make. I am not really sure why I feel the need to eat junk. Junk tastes good and on one level it makes me feel good but it also makes me feel bad. Sometimes physically bad but almost always emotionally bad. I recognize the cycle it sets up. I feel bad so I eat junk which at first makes me feel good but soon makes me feel bad and this makes me want to eat more junk for that brief period of feeling good. I hate to use the word addiction but I realize junk food promotes addictive behavior.
So what am I doing? I am staying the course and following my eating plan. I am tracking what I eat in a sense. Mostly I list it in an app. I am more concerned with what I am eating and not really focusing on calories. At some point I might want to track calories but I am not there yet. If I eat healthy foods like fruits, veggies, and beans and include but limit nuts and seeds and other higher calorie foods like dried fruit and avocado, I lose weight. When/if the weight loss stops I will think more about calories.
I am also making more of an effort to understand my feelings about food and why I want to eat certain things. I am keeping a private journal and it is helping.
So that is basically where I am at. I seem to have made peace with my food demons for now but I am still on high alert. At any minute the sleeping giant could wake up.
I am ready to start a new challenge with renewed energy and tempered optimism.