Monday, June 27, 2011

love of structure

I love structure.  I'm a planner, and I don't adapt to change very well.  This is true in most areas of my life, especially with food.  I have found that three meals a day works well for me.  Adding snacks somehow throws me off kilter.  I know there are many experts who recommend eating six small meals a day rather than 3 meals a day.   When I eat a smaller meal or snack, it's like my body asks "where's the rest of the food??"  It's too easy to turn those six mini meals into six large meals, or simply eat all day.

I even tend to eat the same foods most days.  At least for breakfast and lunch.  Dinner varies.  I don't really get bored with the same types of foods for breakfast and lunch.  I guess maybe I derive some sort of comfort from the continuity.

I also eat my meals at almost the same time every day.  I feel like that is almost more of a physical thing than a structured thing.  Since I do eat at about the same time every day, my body simply expects food at that time.

For the most part, I like all of this structure.  However, it can cause a problem if something interrupts my routine.  For example, I took my daughter and one of her friends to a movie last night.  (Soul Surfer was much better than I expected.  Very inspiring.  If that young girl can do what she has done, then I can certainly overcome my struggles!)  The only time that we would be able to go was in the middle of my normal dinner time.  I'm sure to most people, this would be absolutely no problem whatsoever.  In fact, most people probably wouldn't give this a second thought.

I certainly didn't avoid the movie because of the timing, but it did concern me.  In situations like this in the past, even with careful planning I've the results haven't been good.  I would wait until later to eat, then binge or over eat because I was starving.  Or I would eat a snack before the movie, and that snack would somehow trigger a binge.  I've also tried eating the meal earlier than normal, but then I'm starving later.

I'm proud to say that last night went well!!!  I took some almonds with me, and ate them about mid-way through the movie.  After I got home, I ate a healthy dinner.  I didn't have cravings or anything!!

Friday, June 24, 2011


I was running a few errands yesterday, and I started craving junk food.  It was close to dinner, and I began thinking about Cheetos.  I don't know how that thought process began, but I wanted Cheetos.  The airy, puffy kind.  Oh, how they melt in your mouth.  Then I began thinking about chocolate.  Then ice cream.  I stuck a piece of strongly flavored peppermint gum in my mouth, and that actually worked for a while.

My mistake was stopping at a drugstore.  I didn't really need to stop there; I could have waited until another day when I wasn't experiencing cravings.  Of course, a drugstore doesn't have a large selection of food.  However, when craving junk food there's plenty that can be purchased.  I found the few things that I needed, then battled with myself.  The same old thought processes.  "Why can't I eat junk food occasionally like everyone else?"  "I've lost a lot of weight, one small binge won't hurt."  Of course, I know better, but the call of the fat and sugar in junk food can be strong.

I started toward the check out line, then went back to the food.  I put a small back of Cheetos, a package of cookies, and three Snickers bars in the shopping cart.  After all, the Snickers bars were buy 2 get 1 free and they were the new peanut butter kind that I haven't tried. Then I added a Diet Dr. Pepper.  How ironic.  I started rationalizing that I probably couldn't eat all of this junk, so the binge wouldn't be as bad as prior incidents.  I rationalized that at least I didn't decide on the super size bag of Cheetos, I didn't include the Pop-tarts, ice cream, and Reese Cups that were so tantalizing.

I almost made it to the check out line when I turned around and put the stuff bag on the shelf.  I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't even put the items back in their proper places.  I just stuck all of it on the same shelf in the candy aisle. How pathetic.  I knew that if I didn't immediately get that stuff out of my sight, I would purchase it and eat until I felt sick.

While waiting in line, I texted my son.  "Having trouble. Craving junk food."  A bit later he texted me back and told me to go home and immediately begin exercising to combat the cravings.  I wasn't in a position to do so because I had to pick my daughter and her friend up from roller skating.   We texted back and forth for a while, and he both encouraged me and gave me some tough love.

I wish so much that there could be something else that could take the place of this addiction to food.  Something else that would give me the same feelings that I have while eating junk.  It would also be nice if somehow I could fully remember the awful feelings after the binge.  The too-full, why-did-I-do-this-again, guilty, shameful feelings.

This will probably always be a struggle for me.  I will overcome, though.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Deep Fried Kool-Aid????

I heard on the news this morning that the latest food craze is deep fried Kool-Aid.  Does anyone else find this crazy??!!!!  Why would you even think of this?  I live in the South, and we deep fry everything.  Of course there are the standard foods like chicken and french fries.  Then there are other things that probably are only deep fried in southern states like pickles and Oreos.  But Kool-Aid.  Then we wonder why so many Americans struggle with obesity.

On another note.....

I got a really nice compliment today from someone at work.  "Is it just me, or are you just a mere shadow of the person that you used to be?"  I was in a hurry, and it caught me off guard so all I said was something to the effect of yes, I've lost some weight.  I felt like I'd sort of brushed her off, so I sent her an email later and thanked her for the compliment.

When she responded, I got some insight into her struggles.  She lost 80 pounds about 15 years ago.  She indicated that she basically starved herself and exercised excessively for about 6 months, and then she thought she was done.  Oh, no.  She found that maintaining was the hard work.  It took her 10 to 12 years to "unlearn" all of her previous bad habits.  She said that she still craves junk food.  It's hard work, but not impossible.

It was nice to get some encouragement from this person's experience.  Some would say the fact that it took her so long to learn to eat healthy and that she still craves junk food discouraging.  I feel that it is inspiring that someone can maintain a large weight loss despite struggles.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

How do people treat you?

My weight has varied widely over the years.  For the past twenty years, it has very seldom been within the normal range.  It has varied anywhere from normal to morbidly obese.  If you are in the same or similar situation, do you feel that there are people that treat you differently when you are at a normal weight (or slightly overweight) than they do when you are obese?

When I got pregnant with my first child, I was slightly overweight.  Actually, I was probably more than slightly overweight but I always "carried it well".  I gained 60 pounds during that pregnancy.  I very clearly remember when my son was probably one or two months old that a family member told me that I should make sure I lost all of the weight I had gained.  "You're too pretty to be this heavy."

I've mentioned before that there was a time that I lost a huge amount of weight, and I stayed at a healthy weight for about a year or two.  Perhaps it is only my imagination, but I feel like that family member treated me entirely different during that time than any other.  I feel as if he were nicer, more affectionate, more talkative at family functions.  Again, maybe my sensitivity about the issue has caused me to mis-judge the situation, but I don't think so.

I'm very blessed that my immediate family has always loved me regardless of my weight, and they have treated me very respectfully.  My parents, sister, husband and kids have always been very supportive and never judgmental.  If this person is treating me differently based on my weight, then intellectually I know that it is his problem rather than mine.  That doesn't mean that it doesn't hurt, though.

Have you experienced this?

Saturday, June 18, 2011

73 pounds gone!

Wow.  I've lost 14 pounds this month, which makes a total of 73 pounds gone.  It looks like the healthy eating and exercising are paying off!

As usual, the self doubt is quick to creep into my thoughts.  "Yes, you've lost 73 pounds but you have so much more to lose."  "Yes, you've lost 73 pounds but can you continue to lose until you're at a normal weight and maintain it for the rest of your life?"

This is when I have to make the conscious decision to take this one step at a time.  I have to tell myself - yes, you can do this!!  I have to remind myself that the healthy choices I'm making now are setting the pace for a lifetime of good health.

Yes, I can do this.

Friday, June 17, 2011

how to shop while losing weight

I'm finding that many of my clothes are too large now, which is a nice feeling!  I've posted before about the challenge of shopping for clothes while losing weight; specifically the challenge as it relates to someone such as myself who has a lot of weight to lose.

There are two other struggles I have that relate to this.  First, there is a large part of me (no pun intended!) that doesn't want to get rid of clothing as it becomes too large for me.  I've been on this journey so many times I've lost count.  Despite the fact that I'm committed to being healthy, and that this is a lifetime commitment, I guess I still doubt that I will never need these large sizes again.

When shopping for clothing, I often see great items at good prices that I'd like to buy even though they would be far too small right now.  This is especially tempting when I find a brand new item at the thrift store for $3.  I know that I will eventually need clothing in these sizes, but since I've been unsuccessful at this battle so many times before I don't purchase the item.  There are some items, such as sweaters or jackets, that I don't really know what size I will be during the season that I will need them.  This is the excuse I use for not purchasing an item in a smaller size rather than facing the fact that I still don't have  complete confidence that I will lose the weight I need to and keep it off for the rest of my life.

Does anyone else struggle with these issues?  Self doubt?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


We had a health fair at work today.  We were encouraged to take advantage of different types of screenings that were offered.  There were incentives such as gift cards for having your weight, blood pressure, diabetes risk assessment, BMI calculated, cholesterol checked, etc.

I had absolutely no desire to do any of these tests.  I do go to my doctor once a year, and despite being  very overweight my blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, etc. are fine.  That doesn't mean I want to subject myself to these tests in public, at work, when I don't have to, though.

A few of my co-workers took advantage of the screenings and were very surprised at the results.  One of my co-workers appears to be a relatively  normal weight.  I wouldn't categorize her as thin, but I definitely wouldn't say that she is overweight.  She was very upset after she went to the screenings.  She was supposedly told that she was overweight, and that at 5'7 she should be 111 pounds.  She went on and on about how fat she was and how depressed the results made her and how she wanted to go eat a ton of junk food.  Of course, myself and others assured her that she was not fat but she continued to talk about this.

All of this was so awkward!!  Despite loosing 60 plus pounds, I'm still rather overweight.  To have someone who is relatively thin complain about fat while at a desk beside mine makes me so uncomfortable. I suppose I shouldn't let it bother me, but it did.  If she thinks she's fat, what must she think of me?  During one of the many conversations that resulted, someone mentioned the obese word.  That made it even worse.

I've read on other blogs that thin people don't typically talk about being overweight around an overweight person.  Perhaps it's just the people I'm around, but I've been involved in numerous conversations like this.  Maybe I should feel good that they don't mind talking about this while I'm around?

Ok....enough rambling.  It was uncomfortable and awkward, but not overwhelmingly so.  I will move on and continue with my life.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

stayed on plan!

I'm proud to stay that I've stayed on plan during this week while on vacation from work!!  I've eaten healthy, no binges, and I've even made healthy choices when I ate at restaurants a few times this week.

It's an amazing feeling to end a week like this with no guilt about what I've eaten!

Exercise habits

I've been walking for a while now, and I've come to enjoy it rather than dread it (most days).  I generally walk in my neighborhood in the evenings for about 20-50 minutes.  I don't always take the same route.  Sometimes my husband and I walk together, sometimes my daughter will go with me, and sometimes I walk by myself.

When I walk with my husband, we take a more challenging route.  It's much easier to do that with him because I'm enjoying our time together rather than focusing on how hard the hills are to climb.  If I walk by myself, I don't usually take the most challenging route so I attempt to compensate by walking longer.

This week, I got out of the habit of walking.  I walked Monday, but then didn't walk again until yesterday. Tuesday I did mow the grass which is likely comparable exercise since I use a push mower.  Wednesday and Thursday night I was busy and Friday it rained.

Anyway - all of this rambling is to say that walking was a hard yesterday since I'd missed so many days! In some ways it wasn't as challenging as I expected, but it was difficult.   It can be so hard to maintain a healthy habit.  I think I've read it takes about 21 days to form a habit.  Why does it seem like only a few days of discontinuing that healthy habit is so detrimental?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


This week is going well!  I'm staying with my healthy eating plan, and I've been getting in some type of exercise every day.

Yesterday, I went to Panera for lunch with my sister, my nieces, my daughter, and one of my cousins.  I chose the "pick 2" option.  I got a 1/2 serving of black bean soup (very yummy) and a 1/2 ham sandwich on whole grain (no cheese) and an apple.  Everything tasted wonderful, and I was very full when I was done.

Today, I'm tackling some painting projects around the house.  To make a long story short, we recently added some insulation in the 2nd story of our house which required cutting several medium to large holes in the walls.  The holes have been patched for a few weeks now.  It seemed silly to hire someone to paint these areas since it's a relatively small job.  My husband is a far better painter than I, however he simply doesn't have the time to paint right now.  I volunteered to paint since I have the time this week.  So far, it's not looking too bad!

Back to work!

Friday, June 3, 2011


Jennifer has kindly given me an Adorable Blog Award!  As a relatively new blogger, I am very flattered.  Thanks Jennifer!


The rules are as follows:

*Thank the person who gave you this award, and link back to them in your post.
*Tell us 10 things about yourself.
*Nominate your bloggers.
*Contact these bloggers, and let them know they received this award.

Ten things about me:

1-I'm a very private person.  I know this is extremely ironic to post on a blog, but it is true.  I don't like sharing things about myself.  That's one of the reasons I haven't posted pictures yet.  I started this blog for my own benefit, but I do hope that eventually it will be of help to others who struggle with overeating.
2-I love shoes!! Flip flops, sandals, flats, kitten heels, you name it.
3-I hate bananas and I hate eggs.  Yuck!  I think it's the mushy texture.  
4-I love to read, particularly suspense/mystery novels.
5-My favorite movie is The Sound of Music.
6-I am a Christian, and value my relationship with God above all else.
7-My favorite place to pray is in the car.  Out loud.  I guess that people passing by think I'm talking to myself, but I don't care.  
8-I live about 10 minutes from my childhood home.
9-I'm afraid of heights!
10-I'm a devoted I Love Lucy fan. 

Who I am nominating:

Thanks again Jennifer! 


I don't have to go back to work until June 13!!!!!  We're not really going on vacation, per se, for a variety of reasons.  My husband and son have to work this week, so my daughter (today is her last day of school) and I will spend time together.  We'll do some fun things in our area.  Movies, shopping, spending time with friends, etc.  I'll also do some of the chores that I know, the deep cleaning and stuff like that.  I also might do a little bit of painting.

I've mentioned before that I have to be very careful with weeks like this.  In the past, one of the things that I looked forward to while I was on vacation was eating.  Bingeing to be more accurate.  Lots of sugary, fatty foods.  Lots of eating out.  I am very mindful of this and refuse to succumb to any temptations to fall into old patterns and habits.

There are so many non-food related ways to have fun!!