Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Yes Body, I Am Listening

One of (the many) issues I have had with food is listening to my body.

Am I hungry?

Am I full?

Are there things missing that my body needs?

I think this sorta goes hand in hand (or hand to mouth) with binge eating.  Though binge eating has  mental aspects to why I do it, I have also taught myself to ignore my body and what it really needs when it comes to food.

I have been SO FULL and yet I have just kept eating.

I have gone without eating and been so hungry I scream and cry and act a fool.

I have ignored those items my body needs for a craving of something that i don't need.

But now, I am trying really hard to LISTEN to my body.  Know what it needs and what it doesn't need.  I am retraining myself to stop and listen.  

For decades it has been about my desire for food, the love of food, the comfort of food, the taste of food, the way food makes me feel well before learning to respect food and make it one part of my life and not MY life.

I remember a few weeks into this journey, I started going to bed with this feeling that was new to me.  I was satisfied by what I had eaten all day, but i also had this bit of hunger in me.  For years I had gone to bed after eating a full meal and I was always stuffed, so stuffed I could feel it most of the night.  But this new feeling actually felt great.  So this is what it feels like to not feel stuffed.  So this is what it is like to eat ENOUGH and no more.  

Part of this journey is creating a new lifestyle.  It is keeping my love of food but learning to respect and be aware of what I put in my body.

So what I am doing, exactly?

1. Don't Eat on Auto-Pilot (Also known as mindless eating.)

I am an emotional eater.  I tend to go on autopilot when it comes to food.  But now I have started counting out my snacks based on portion size.  So instead of bring the bag of baked cheetos or almonds to the living room and going on auto pilot with the food and 30 minutes later realizing I ate 3 servings, I count everything out.  Bring out my 34 pieces of cheetos in the living room and eat that portion.  Then I wait at least a half an hour.  Am I still hungry?  Then I get more.  But normally I have been satisfied with what I ate and I move on.

2. Eat When I am Hungry

When counting calories I have had guilt when I go over.  But I have had to learn that some days I am just hungrier than others, while other days I barely hit my calorie goal.  Not sure why, but if I am hungry I now eat.  BUT I now know the difference between real hunger, boredom, or eating because I think I should eat.  In fact, I ask myself those questions to see why I am eating.

3. Stop When I am Satisfied and Before I get Too Full

Sometimes I actually WANT to eat more.  Recently I really wanted food, it was one of my emotional/stressed days.  I was eating my meal and noticed I was satisfied and starting to get full.  I actually got angry with myself that I was getting FULL.  I WANTED TO KEEP EATING.  It was my comfort.  What will happen if I just stop.  What about the food I didn't eat, what will happen to it.  I don't want to wait to eat the rest of the food later.  I want it NOW.

I got mad all because I was full but wanted the rest of my meal.  Logic goes out the door for those moments.  In the past I would have kept going because it would comfort me and I would eat to the point of feeling sick.  But I stopped.  I told myself that I can eat the rest for lunch the next day and it would be amazing!  Yeah, I sorta had to reason with myself like I reason with my 3 1/2 year old.  I also told myself that if I was hungry later, really hungry I could have a snack.  You want to know something, I didn't feel I needed the snack later.  Now don't get me wrong, I wanted a snack because I was thinking about it...but I also knew I was fine.  I wasn't feeling hungry.  I then went to bed and felt good all because I stopped when I was satisfied.

4. Enjoy What I am Eating (aka SLOW DOWN)

Being a binge eater you tend to be a fast eater.  Eat as much as you can in a short amount of time.  With that, it takes your stomach and mind awhile to communicate to each other that you are infact DONE eating.  When I am eating now I really try to slow down.  Put my fork down in between bites.  Taste the food and not rush.  This. Is. Hard. and something I am still struggling with every day.  But I am working on it.  I had some cheesecake the other day and it took me 20 minutes to eat it.  I intentionally slowed down.  Anticipated and then enjoyed EACH and EVERY bite.  Snacks, I eat one at a time instead of stuffing a handful in my mouth.  Dinner I sit and eat slowly.  I am respecting the food and savoring what I eat.

5. Eat What Your Body Wants

I still snack.  I still eat some bites of chocolate every day (thank goodness for Hershey kisses!!) I still eat carbs.  I still drink my lattes in moderation.  But I am also eating lots of lean meats, fruits and vegetables.  I am keeping my diet balanced, without giving up those things that make me happy.  Moderation and balance and eating the things my body wants....just in WAY smaller portions and not all the time.

So this is where I am now.  Learning to listen to my body!!!  And on the eve of my 35th birthday, I am finding that now, more than ever, I need to stop and listen!

Monday, April 13, 2015

100 Days - Keep Going (Subtitle Motivation)

I logged into My Fitness Pal on Sunday and was congratulated with logging in 100 days in a row.  Surprisingly (or not so if you know me) I had mixed feelings about this.

Part of me was excited as it meant I have been doing this diet for 100 days and have managed to, at least try, to stay with it for a 100 days.  This is big for me!

But then part of me was disappointed as I thought I would be at least 30 lbs down by this date, instead of 21.  The past month has been tough, I haven't been as strict with my diet and I haven't been working out, so I felt disappointment for not being where I thought I should be and not working as hard as I know I can.

And just when I was feeling bad I woke the next morning to see comments from my mom and friend that made me feel so happy and encouraged me to keep going and not think lightly of how far I have come and what I have done so far.


I have to remember this weight has been put on over the last 10 years, it is going to take awhile and a lifestyle change to get it off.

And then I thought of what my sister told me when I started.  I think of this every time I start to get down.

For me, this is what motivates me and keeps me going.  People.

As I have said before, I have always closed myself off from people in the past because my weight issues are embarrassing and I feel so vulnerable talking about it.  But more than ever I have realized that I need these amazing people and they are truly on myside, and I know they need me too because we are all trying to become healthier and better ourselves. I feel so grateful to have SO much support, and I hope I am able to make others feel motivated as well.

Yes, I have to do this on my own, but I don't have to be alone while I do it.

Now, the hardest part for me is staying motivated.  Those times when you try so hard and do not see any results, it is so frustrating and discouraging.  Those are the times I turn to my friends/family as well as, the other things that motivate refocus me.  Yes, I think that is the best term....refocus.  Sometimes I just need to get out of my own head, step back and refocus.

To help with this I created a Pinterest board of things that keep me going.  It sounds silly and consists of things like quotes, outfits I want to wear, before and after weight loss photos...things that inspire me.  But it works.  Just like texting a friend at 9:30pm when I want to binge, going on this board has also stopped me and allows me to refocus.

I refocus on the clothes I so desperately want to wear some day and not have to pay $60 for a shirt that is so bulky and unflattering.  And I want to wear boots with jeans or leggings like ALL THE TIME!

 (Ok, I will never wear this but I a girl can dream, right?!?!)

I have never worn a little black dress, I want to so bad.


We have a beach trip planned next year and I want to wear a swimsuit and go swimming with Henry and not think twice about.

I want to post my before and after and have people go WOW and feel motivated and encouraged by my transformation.

this is me currently 20 lbs down...don't laugh :-/

I want this little man, my biggest inspiration, to know as he gets older that he can do ANYTHING he sets his mind too.  And even if it seems hard or impossible or takes a long long time, he can do it.  And I can show him this because I DID IT.

So to all of you who are supporting me on this long journey I have to say THANK YOU.  I can't even begin to tell you how much it means to me.  The check-ins, the emails, the "likes" it all means so much.

So what motivates YOU?!?!  What/who are the things that keep you going?  How do you stay motivated??