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Doing Battle Within Myself

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I've been at this weight loss thing for more of my 49 years than not. I've tried every diet known to man, done every program, spent thousands of dollars on gyms, programs, equipment in my life. I have succeeded at times, been determined to never gain weight again, and then done just that, usually plus more than I did the last time.

A little more than a year ago, I found SP and its message of lifestyle change versus "diet" really resonated with me, because goodness knows I'd done the diet route and that doesn't work, or at least it certainly hasn't worked for me. So, I came up with this mantra of "baby steps," and certainly have found many friends here that live by the same mantra.

I have changed much about my lifestyle in a good, healthy way over these last months. I've lost about 30 pounds, and I have incorporated regular physical activity into my life pretty consistently.
The war certainly continues to be waged, as I have much, much more weight to lose, but I can live with that, I can live with the gradual weight loss that comes from the gradual lifestyle adjustments that I believe with all my heart are here to stay. I have won many battles.

There is one enemy that continues to get the best of me. I have talked about it, I have joked about it, I have studied it, I have analyzed it, I have tried all sorts of modification techniques, and yet, there it is, still waiting for me every single night. The urge to eat everything in sight at night, after dinner is over and the kitchen is cleaned up and my son and sometimes my DH are in bed.. I have this restless sense...what can I eat? And, because much of the worst choice food is not even in my house, I improvise..and I just keep going and going, till I feel yucky and finally drag myself upstairs.

For a long time, I just didn't come back downstairs after I would go up with my son for his nighttime rituals, this went on for a long time. But, I don't want to admit defeat, I will not give into the idea that I cannot master this, that I have to avoid it. First, avoidance is just not healthy, and second, you know, sometimes it's nice to be in my house when it's kind of quiet, relaxing on the couch, watching some grown-up television, reading the newspaper, hanging out with DH... all that stuff. .

Gotta figure it out..otherwise, all this great work will be for naught..
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Hey there, Buddy! First of all (despite on-going challenges), you are doing great and you are my hero in so many ways... you've been a HUGE inspiriation to me finding my own sense of 'lifestyle'. I think what you've accomplished is exactly what everyone should aim for.

    I would echo a lot of what Lynn has already said (great questions... and your answers will guide you in considering what I have to add). In addition, I would encourage you to look at what you eat during the day, and consider:

    What if you were to view your desire/impulse/behaviour as a sincere message from your body, instead of as a 'bad habit' you have to gain control over?

    First of all, is your protein high enough? Some people do better if they eat at the top of their protein range... cuts cravings and the need to eat later in the day.

    (I know there are several confliciting viewpoints on this) How long is it between supper and bedtime for you? One school of thought says that ideally we should eat every 2-4 hours, and stop eating 2 hours before bedtime. If it's 5-6 hours between supper and bedtime, it makes sense that you would want to eat in the evening. Perhaps try spacing your food out differently throughout the day. As long as you are staying within your calorie range, eating anytime in a 24 hour period is not bad for you. That your body is burning your 'fat' all night if you don't eat after supper is a myth.

    "avoidance is just not healthy" you are SO right, and perhaps all you need to do is give yourself permission to eat a SMALL balanced 'meal' (all food groups included - fat, carbs, protein) a couple of hours before you go to bed (telling yourself you can eat if you want to, instead of feeling badly that you want to). Plan it, and look forward to it.

    My Dad eats in the evening... always has... every night... and he has never had any difficulty regulating his weight. I've decided to take a page from his book for myself. I have a small bowl of cereal with milk, or fruit and yogurt, or a small sandwich every evening (a hard boiled egg in a half high fibre pita is GREAT, hummus and veggies), 2 hours before I go to sleep. If I'm at a party and I'm up until 2am, I eat something evey 2 hours throughout the evening. I just make sure that my choices are always good, clean, healthy food. I find I'm sleeping better in general (when I'm sleeping) and I don't ever feel bloated and over-stuffed. I also wake up STARVING and HIGHLY motivated to eat my breakfast (which I used to struggle to do) which means my metabolism is revving HIGH. Another benefit for me, is that when I'm not sleeping (insomnia) I actually do better mentally and physically if I feed myself this way... I just make sure I keep my carbs in range and that my protein is very lean.

    Food, and eating, aren't the enemy... it's just really about learning how to feed YOUR body most effectively.

    Check out this blog... you might find it interesting:
    'My Five Steps to Food Freedom'
    You ARE doing this... you're the BEST baby-stepper I know!!!

    {{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}
    4146 days ago
    My dear T,
    As you can see by my time stamp, we postponed the camping due to impending thunderstorms. I will resume painting with Abs this afternoon. I just logged on while eating my lunch of McDonald's (but I'm supposed t be supporting you on your "demons" not unburdening with my own.

    First of all...You have gotten a handle on so much this year, and have so many of the right things in place. Let's celebrate your exercising , weight loss and the fun you're having with Tony. You will continue to loose and get down to where you want to be. I have no doubt about it. And what you lack in speed, you make up for in spades with the true lifestyle changes you've made that will enable you to live so much healthier (and longer).

    What is with this night eating? (Asks "Dr. Lynn")

    Is it from your childhood? .... so many cultures use food as reward, food to sooth, food a ritual.
    Is it that you're not eating enough during your busy, busy days.
    Is it that you don't like to eat in front of Brian/people?
    Is it an ingrained habit.

    These are questions my sister had to think about when facing a similar challenge.

    As for suggestions... since you (like me) don't keep much of the "crap" you really want to eat at home, can you sit down with cut up veggies or fruit, or fat free popcorn to mimic the small pieces of the foods you crave but won't eat. (Kind of like a smoker snaps a rubber band on her wrist when craving a cigarette.)

    Would you "doodle" to keep your hands busy or log on? (I sometimes log on because I can't eat if I'm tying.)

    You can baby step your way out of this one (with your goldfish around your neck just like Bill Murray... I loved that movie.) just like you have in the other areas. And, you can always call me if you want to talk. If I'm not running around like a chicken with my head cut off, you know I'm here for you!

    Love you,
    Lynn emoticon baby steps!!
    4146 days ago
    I feel for you, because I know how hard it is to break routines and as you said, that time is your time without children restrictions. Have you thought of trying to drink more water at this time? That is what I am trying to do, along with diet drinks (I know we shouldn't drink sodas but for myself, I am getting urges out of boredom and I find this helps me).
    4146 days ago
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