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My (very fit and athletic) friend keeps saying that if you do something faithfully for 3 months, it becomes a habit. I need to buckle down and MAKE new habits....

On the scale, this last year, I weighed more than I ever have in my life. Thank goodness that I have a plan ...I have written before about how with my schedule and having ADD (minus the hyper - dang it!) and the fact that there is so much in the world today to distract you, I forget constantly that I am even supposed to be watching what I eat and upping my exercising. Even though I have Spark, that I love, I am starting to journal. I can decorate it up and take with me everywhere with my goals and reasons I want to lose weight (that I have on Spark), just so I can have a reminder with me 24/7. What a great way to start a new year, 2017!
I have to become obsessed basically in order to develop healthy habits. Obsessive, but with the right things instead of the destructive ones.

I am 48 years old. I am a night shift nurse. I have an autoimmune disease that is similar to rheumatoid arthritis. I know people who have it affect them a lot worse than it does me, so I am just thankful every day that I can be active when I chose to be. I have no energy, I feel miserable and like a failure on the inside and out. My self-esteem has been in the toilet! No more. I deserve better than this and it has been MY CHOICE and my choice alone, to keep letting food control me.

I am a food addict, a compulsive over-eater. The proper name for it is binge-eating disorder. It still boils down to a food addiction. I am lucky enough that my family Dr. is working on it with me.

One day years back in my semesters in the Nursing program, for one of my clinicals, I attended an AA meeting at a facility for drug treatment. As I sat through this meeting, I had to fight the tears. Even though they were referring to alcohol addiction, everything they talked about was me and my addiction to food. I felt like I belonged there as much as those that were attending. I went home and told my husband this (who happens to be an alcoholic, but does not go or try to quit completely). I told him I felt like I belonged there. I did make a phone call to a local OA about a meeting but never went. I do know that we can have lots of tools in front of us, but band-aids do not fix the real problem. If the underlying issue is not dealt with, all of the things we use to try to change it will not change it inevitably. I am working on that through therapy. I will rise back up. I have come to the conclusion that--- The food is not the problem, it's ME! :)

Mostly I have been lazy. I am changing that. My weight is affecting every aspect of my life. My eating has been so out of control for so long. One day I am determined and the next it seems I forget what I had planned.. Sometimes, I find it ironic that I am a caregiver for others, but don't care for myself as I should. I have read that this is not uncommon for my personality type and for nurses. I need to make myself my own patient

My husband is disgusted with me. I don't blame him. It is affecting our relationship and I see it. He is the best man that I have ever had and I want to do this first and foremost for myself, but also for him. I want to make him proud of me once again. He has told me before that whatever I have to do as far as food, he is willing to do with me. He is about to get tested on that. 

I am sure that cravings and loneliness at night mixed with less affection from my husband when off work are the things that drives me into consuming massive calories and a lot of it high-sugar foods. Although, I do not blame him. This is my own fault. I just know that it contributes. What a vicious circle. Less affection ---More eating-- Gain weight -- Even less affection.......My biggest challenge will be when I am working my 12-hr shifts. We always order food out and I usually end up getting high carb foods. I am going to have to start making better choices. I am worth it. Time to "LOVE THYSELF”!

I am working on a new mindset. I started going to counseling to try to sort out the reasons why I binge eat. It is amazing what can happen when you have a good therapist! You see, I am usually the one that people seek out when they need advice but in this area, I have been so lost for so long, I need encouraging people to give me a hand up. I am not ashamed! Shame is another thing that I have been living with and I'm done with feeling it. :)

I am now 2 1/2 years smoke free. Has it made my binge-eating even harder to control? Yes it has. I refuse to use it as an excuse, though. I have many bad habits that I am trying to break (like drinking pop constantly and never water).

A couple of years ago, I got up before one of my therapy appointments and posted this on Facebook. Something just urged me to do it and I am putting it on here so I can re-read it when I need to encourage myself or even if it may encourage someone else.

"Today, I am one month SMOKE FREE!
Just over a month ago I decided it was time to seek out some help with a problem that I have and always have had but that has gotten way out of control. Food addiction. Throw in the shift that I work with some underlying depression (probably mostly related to that shift) and some other things, and you have the equivalent to an alcoholic or drug addict. No one really understands unless they have been there. I am learning that there are far too many people who deal with the same problem but live with it in shame as I have been for years. Anyway, I am slowly climbing out of the hole that I have been in and making changes to a better ME! Getting really sick helped me to quit smoking, but regardless, I have stuck with it. I have rode around with that last cigarette in my car and it sits there. (Driving is the hardest time for me not to smoke!)

I am tired of living with shame for how I look, not wanting to go anywhere or have people see me out of embarrassment. It's a prison and it really sucks when you are the one who holds the key and can't seem to turn it. It just seems so stupid and weak to me. I know it's all for a reason.

No more shame. It is a powerful force.

Self-analyzation can drive you a little mad, but it's also catharctic.

I can't even begin to tell you how fortunate I am to have people who love me just the way I am and don't make me feel judged. I judge myself enough.

Look out. Quitting smoking is just the beginning. I am working on turning all of my trials into treasure!"

I got so many comments from people and I felt so loved and supported that I cried on and off for 2 days!

My therapist, after hearing what I had written and the comments made thus far, and through all of the tears, said, "I can see chains falling off of you." She also mentioned that when you live with the darkness, in secret, it has power over you, but once you bring it to the light, the darkness has to flee! That's what you did, by bringing it to the light." That all to me was a Divine word and I am still proclaiming it!! Years, YEARS I have not been able to get this under any control at all and I am doing it! I now completely understand what it is to have "strongholds" in your life and I finally feel something I haven't felt in soooo long, HOPE!

It has taken me some time to get back here, but here I am.

I feel that my disconnect from God has been a lot of my problem, I have fallen away and allowed the enemy to come in and get a stronghold on me, but strongholds are meant to be broken. :) God says "I set before you life and death. Chose life." Up until now I have been choosing death by mistreating my body and feeling the repercussions of it. Now I am choosing life!!! He gave it to me, I cannot throw it away.

I know this for a fact because, painfully, my husband has told me several times. I don’t even like to eat in front of him anymore. I want that gone. I want to sit in a room full of people and feel ok with myself. Not to always know that I am the biggest person in the room. I want to feel pretty again. I want to look and feel good when I walk into my patient's rooms so I can make a difference in their lives.

Life Goals

Goal 1: Make changes!
To unlock this door of this prison cell of a FAT BODY that I have been in for soooooo loooong. I feel that God has put people in my path that have mentally and spiritually energized my battery. A jump-start if you will. I have been in a slump for such a long time. I had spent some time being angry about certain things that happened in the past and I can't say that that anger is totally gone. I have spent time feeling like I am not worthy of the affection I deserve. I have spent time feeling uncomfortable pretty much every minute of every day in my body. Even in the position I sleep in in bed when my husband is home. I'm totally embarrassed if I wake because he is walking through the bedroom and I am in some exposed position, knowing he has looked at me. How freakin stupid is that!!

But I feel as though God has sent people to motivate me by telling me that I am beautiful on the inside, that I am no less worthy of love and affection if I am overweight (my friend Ray mostly) and that I just need to stick with a plan for 3 months and it will be a new habit!! (Steve, my athletic friend).

I have spent years now, feeling unattractive and abstaining from many things that I enjoy, for fear of how I will look doing it. (Prison!) It's time to look in the mirror and see something that makes me proud. It's time to hear others notice and keep noticing. It's time. Period. I want to make these people who genuinely care and do not make me feel judged, PROUD!

Goal 2: Connecting with loved ones
I am going to make a point to either see or reach out by phone or text or message, to people I don't get to see enough. In my profession (nursing), you see just how short life can be or how you can end up in a situation where you are not as free to visit people as you once were. I don't want to live with regrets, so I am making this year different. My job also makes this a challenge as I work 12-hr shifts and the night-shift on top of that. People are always thinking it has to be so easy, because it is only 3 days a week. What they don't realize is that it's more like 5. You have a day of sleeping before, you aren't able to do anything else on the days that you work, especially if you live an hour away, and you have to pretty much keep your schedule even when you aren't working if you want to feel any kind of good at all. This is what I do. Most of the time, by the time I am up and ready to tackle the world, the world is gently getting ready to sleep. You can't imagine my excitement at Christmas time when stores stayed open until midnight for shopping. I was in heaven and wished it could be that way all of the time. I am thankful for 24-hr stores, so i can still grocery shop (and in peace, mind you :)). But it poses a challenge when wanting to keep up with people. There is nothing saying that I can't pick up the phone, though. Oh, and I may complain about the disadvantages of working the nightshift, but I chose it because it is the lesser of two evils. I would not want to work day shift where I am and I am committed for 2 more years by contract to work there. When that time is done, I will be looking for a day shift job closer to home.

Goal 3: Stepping Up My Exercise
I will get out of the house for a walks and enjoy some sunshine and fresh air. I know I will feel completely self-conscious walking down the road, feeling that I am being judged by the onlookers, but then I remind myself that in order to see the difference, they can see me now and then see the hard work as it starts to fall off of me.

Sometimes I like to stop at one of the houses where I played as a young girl and sit on the steps leading down to the lake. I used to go there as a teenager to visit an elderly lady who lived there alone. She always enjoyed my visits and after she was put into a home, when my world seemed to be falling apart for any reason, I would go there and sit on the steps and have some solitude to think about things. too. It’s always a nice revisit and I will be doing more of it. I enjoy the lake breeze on my face and smelled the familiar smells. There is no reason why I can’t do this on all of my days off.

I have a gym membership to a 24-hr facility (Planet Fitness). I haven’t used it in a year. It even has a chair massager and a bed massager, oh! And a tanner. Why have I not gone back? It doesn’t matter. JUST DO IT! A tan always makes me feel better even by itself.

I have memories of how I used to feel. I want that back.

Goal 4: Use all of the tools at my disposal!
I know, in this life, that I have UNENDING tools for FREE, that can only reinforce my success. I have made attempts in the past and not stuck with them. That is why I end up in failure. This time I am setting up rewards for myself. I am tired of living in a prison that I really have the keys to just walk out, painful as it may be. I have to admit that no one has put a spoon to my mouth.

I will be using them constantly even if I have to put sticky notes all around my house to remind me of what I am doing so I don't get off track... and, Oh, how I love my MP3 player!! :) Music motivates me, so I need to utilize that also!! OFTEN!

Goal 5: Take my Vitamins!
I had a Spark gentleman comment on one of my blogs a while back about vitamin D and how I am probably lacking, being a night-shifter. I decided to get out a DVD that I ordered several years back in one of my stress management classes that I thought was excellent (but hadn't watched again - it was still in the wrapper). Dr. Michael Roizen - "You, Inner and Outer Beauty"). This doctor gave wonderful advice for a "beautiful day" pretty much hour by hour, the things we need to be doing for self-care, such as skin, diet, vitamins, sleep, etc.) I forgot how much I loved the DVD. He gave a list of vitamins that we should be taking every day. There it was, that Vitamin D. So I now have a collection of vitamins I will be taking daily. I am sure I will see a difference. I have only taken my RA meds for years, knowing as a nurse, that I should at least be taking a multi-vitamin at my age.

I added the list of vitamins to my Sparkpage under my plan if you are curious.

Added motivation goals:
-Set alarms on my phone and sending emails to myself to keep me focused.
-Read my bible daily before anything else (first fruits can only make the rest of the day better)...
-Pray/ Make a warrior room to do even better praying
-Practice stress relief activities that I have recently learned to keep myself from
feeling like binge-eating.
-Do a deep STUDY of the books I have bought on Binge-eating disorder and journal at the same time as I am reading/studying them about things I learn and relate to.
-I believe in one magic word in life. BALANCE. In all things. This is my biggest goal. If I follow that, all other things will fall into place.
-See my list of things that I have spent money on and not put to use and put them to use!!

Member Since: 3/27/2007

Fitness Minutes: 4,547

My Goals:
Get down to 165 lbs and reward myself with a CRUISE!
To go to Cedar Point and ride the rides. All of them!

My Program:
I am starting today to add the following vitamins/minerals to my diet. Per Dr. Roizen:

-Half of a multi-vitamin (with at least 500 IU of vitamin D) 1/2 in morning/ 1/2 in evening.
-600 mg of calcium
-200 mg of magnesium
-600 mg of omega-3 DHA
-162.5 mg of ASA a day

I have found out that my BMR is only 2560 and you are supposed to eat 500 calories less than that a day so knowing that:
-2060 Calories or less per day

I am going to use the tools that Spark has to bring on my success!

Personal Information:

Other Information:
Things I can do to help!
-Pray/meditate/speak verses out loud
-Exercise and record it
-Read books or on computer about weight loss
-Watch programs like Extreme Weight Loss
-Cook/bake something
-Clean/organize something
-Do something creative

Read More About GAYLEHOUSE - Profile Information moved here. (Updated February 20)

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Team Keto! Ketogenic        
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 Pounds lost: 21.2 
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  • v CELTGIRL1974
    Hi!! We keep missing each other!! I am glad to see you back!! I have been crazy at work but must find time to encourage friends and get the motivation that I need from amazing people like you!!!
    480 days ago
  • v SIMCYN
    Gayle... there's talk about setting up a team in our 5% challenge for keto folks. Would that be something you would be interested in? If you aren't familiar with the 5% challenge, it's where we compete against each other to lose 5% of our body weight within 8 weeks.
    483 days ago
  • v SIMCYN
    Hey Gayle emoticon Just checking in with you after a couple of days. I'm in the kenogenic's group and being that I am a nurse who used to work 12 hour night shifts, I have an added need to see you succeed. Have you started Keto yet?
    484 days ago

    Comment edited on: 2/25/2017 8:50:00 AM
  • v SIMCYN
    Hey Gale emoticon Just checking in with you after a couple of days. I'm in the kenogenic's group and being that I am a nurse who used to work 12 hour night shifts, I have an added need to see you succeed. Have you started Keto yet?
    484 days ago
    Hi Gayle!!! you can do this!! if i can help Sparkmail me!!
    Thanks for your comment on my page..if i can find a picture i'll post it...our goal weights are the same we can do this together!!
    490 days ago
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