Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Burst Into Summer Challenge - Week 2 Check In

Having started the Burst Into Summer Challenge at The Sisterhood of The Shrinking Jeans a bit late, this is my first check in although it's the second week.  I'll let you figure out the math.

I'm happy to report a 2 pound loss as of this week's weigh in.  I do my official weigh in on Mondays, and this is the weight that I use for our check in for this challenge which happens on Wednesdays.  Despite a DISMAL weekend food-wise, I still posted a nice loss so I'm counting my blessings and building on them. 

Since Monday everything I've consumed has been logged and SHARED with people.  That's right, SHARED.  I have a small group of ladies who are helping each other along on this journey via FB and it's been really helpful for me to share my food/activity log with them.  I've been making good choices, I've been kicking it HARD at the gym (did I mention I'm in love with the elliptical?  I know I did, but who cares - I'll throw caution to the wind and declare it again:  I LOVE THAT THING.) and I have been feeling good in general. 

I soaked up some sun today outside and I swear to you there really is something about fresh air that makes me feel so alive. Traditionally I've been the "I hate the outdoors and I want to stay inside where it's cool" kind of person but I have been LOVING being outside lately.  AND, might I add - I did so today in a tank top, which I have NEVER, EVER worn outside during daylight hours.  This is huge for me.  I've been assured that my backyard is considered "public" since people COULD see me.  So that's a big step for me.  YAHOO!

Overall, fabulous week.  I have only heard from one teammate but that's ok.  I'm going to rock this challenge no matter what!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Friend Making Monday - 6/27/2011

If you've taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you're new, please take a moment to answer this week's question on your own blog then add a link at the bottom of this post so we can all see your post. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Be sure to head back to Kenz's blog - All The Weigh and check out the rest!

  1. List a few common items that can always be found in your fridge.  Onions, yogurt, water, Laughing Cow French Onion cheese wedges, apples
  2. What kind of milk do you drink? 2% but I drink way less of it than I used to.  In olden times I used to drink glasses and glasses of it.  Now I just use it with cereal.
  3. Do you prefer fresh or frozen vegetables? I like both, but I hate canned vegetables.
  4. What do you currently have to drink in the fridge? Water and milk
  5. How often do you clean out your refrigerator? Once a week on Wednesdays
  6. What’s the healthiest thing in it right now? Fruits and vegetables
  7. What’s the most unhealthy thing in it right now? Hi-C 
  8. What do you wish you had in it that you don’t have now? I'm good - I went grocery shopping on Friday so we're pretty stocked up.
  9. How often do you shop for groceries? Once a week is the "big shopping" but I usually always need milk at least one extra time per week.
  10. What’s the weirdest thing in your fridge right now? It's all pretty normal, really.  Boring, eh?
Okay, now it’s your turn to answer the questions! And these are easy, right?  Don’t forget to come back and link up!  And have a happy Monday! =)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

What Eating Ice Cream 2 Days In A Row Taught Me

I made the mistake of falling off the wagon yesterday face first - and the wagon ran over me.

It's not that I ate so horribly, really.  Ok, yes - I made some very poor choices.  But unlike the roughly six million other times this has happened, I tracked every last thing that I ate.  Every bite.  And as I sit here writing this, I am feeling regret and remorse but I am not feeling the shame that so often accompanies such days for me. 

So what did I learn over the past few days?  As much as I have a love affair with ice cream - as much as I adore it's cold sweetness and creamy does not love me.  For me, there is no "one serving."  Did you know that one serving of ice cream is 1/2 cup?  And while some days that may seem like a lot to me, it's totally not.  Not for someone like me.  Because someone like me is the type of person who thinks if a little is good, more will be a whole lot better.  Yesterday, I ate a peanut butter cup blizzard.  It tasted....well....heavenly.  I'm not even kidding around here.  It rocked my damn socks.  But you know what else?  About six bites in, I felt like crap.  I was so full from the other stuff I ate that I should have stopped and just tossed it in the trash.  But I think you all know me better than that.  I didn't throw ANY of it away.  I ate every last bite.

I was so physically uncomfortable I thought I was going to vomit.  I thought I was going to die having to sit up straight.  My pants were tight, and my stomach was so full I felt horrible.  I thought - I will never eat ice cream again.

And I didn't.

Until about 20 hours later.  I tried to get around the thought of "no more ice cream" by ordering a milkshake.  Yes.  Not so bright.  I totally justified my "I WANT" mode.  Guess what?  Just because "I WANT" doesn't mean "I WILL."  I drank the milkshake, yes I did.  And while I hadn't stuffed myself beforehand, I still felt like total ass afterward.  Just because every one else in the family is eating ice cream doesn't mean I have to. 

Understand me, though - it's not anyone else's fault but my own that I wasn't in control these past few days.  It was my own doing.  It's also my own responsibility to right the ship.  Consider it righted.  And consider me ice cream free for the foreseeable future.  And if I tell you I want some ice cream, please refer me to this post. Please and Thank You.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Transformation Of My Attitude Toward Shopping

Quite sometime ago (approximately half a lifetime ago - or around 6 months ago), I wrote a post called "Honesty."  In it, I detailed how I always took the stance that I hated shopping for clothing and that was true.  I hated the whole ritual of it - the driving to the department store, the selection of clothes to try on (totally made my hands sweat), the actual trying stuff on, the crying after in the dressing room at how I looked in the clothes I "tried" on (I'm not kidding about the "trying" part).  When you're 100 pounds overweight, clothes shopping sucks balls. 

In the recent past, however, I have taken a few VERY short shopping trips.  And by short I mean we happen to be in the town that has the Kohl's store and I happen to have a 20% off coupon or a $10 off coupon and I want to see what I can do with it.  I LOVE Kohl's for housewares and the girls clothing.  But for me?  Usually a little pricey for my taste (did I mention I'm a cheap-ass?) and then there was the whole "shopping" thing I was hung up on.  But guess what? I tried a few things on in a size 1X.  They fit.  I looked pretty.  Did you hear that?  I felt like I looked pretty.  I didn't cry in the dressing room after trying stuff on.  I smiled at myself.  I LOOKED at myself in the mirror.  All angles, ya'll.  I'm very happy to say I'm the proud new owner of three new shirts, all a size 1x, that fit me and look good on me.  And I got great deals on them.

After I bought the last shirt, I said to my husband, "I actually like this shopping thing.  Better watch out!"  With the emergence of my beloved collarbones, I feel more feminine.  I feel more "normal" (not a word I usually use).  I feel more LIKE WHO I REALLY AM.

All I have to say is my friend Beth better look out.  20 more pounds lost and I'm taking her shopping with me!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Friend Making Monday - 6/20/2011

If you've taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you're new, please take a moment to answer this week's question on your own blog then add a link at the bottom of this post so we can all see your post. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Be sure to head back to Kenz's blog - All The Weigh and check out the rest!

FMM: Yes or No?
  1. Do you use coupons? I try.  I really do.  And I'd love to be an Extreme Couponer, or even a Sort Of Extreme Couponer....or really - just a Couponer.  But I'm trying!
  2. Do you like football?Not really.  Maybe I don't understand it.
  3. Are you in a relationship?  Yes...celebrating 14 years together with Aron this July
  4. Is your phone always within arm’s reach? Pretty much, yes
  5. Do you like thunderstorms? I used to.  Now, if I'm being honest - they kind of scare me.
  6. Can you cook? Yes.  And eat.  That's only a very small part of what got me into this mess.
  7. Are you – or have you – lost weight? 31ish pounds SO FAR.
  8. Do you know how to read a map? Yes.
  9. Do you wear makeup?Sometimes, yes.  But honestly I have no clue about makeup.
  10. Do you read regularly? Yes.
  11. Are you publicly affectionate? Yes.  We're big hand-holders and smoochers.  But not we're not public maker-outers (another made up word) because that's private bidness.
  12. Do you like picnics? Yes, when they actually begin.  The prep work involved kind of blows.
  13. Do you have a/c?Yes!  Never had one growing up, so thankful for it now!
  14. Have you ever been out of the country? Just to Canada and Mexico.  We're going to The Bahamas this summer, though.
  15. Do you know how to ride a bicycle? Yes but I'm not batshit crazy over it.  It's ok.  I haven't owned one in many many years.
Okay, now it’s your turn to answer the questions! And these are easy, right?  Don’t forget to come back and link up!  And have a happy Monday! =)

Friday, June 17, 2011

Bring Your Own Crazy Friday (on an actual Friday!)

My friend Joanna at Diary of A Mad Fat Woman turned me on to BYOC, or Bring Your Own Crazy, which Drazil over at It's Just Me, Drazil & Shaniqua hosts each Friday.  I thought I'd throw in again this week!


1. Do you make your bed every day? Tell us about or show us a picture of your bed comforter?

Between Aron and I, the bed gets made EVERY DAY.  Aron's home office is also in our bedroom and I'm sure he doesn't like looking at a rumpled bed all day.  And I know that when the bed's made, it's this completely (free) luxurious feeling when I slide under the covers.  That being said - it's not like it's a monumental task to make it.  We have the fitted sheet on there, and the comforter (that goes to the set) on top of that.  We lay ON TOP of the comforter and the cover up with our own individual blankets.  We do that because somehow, some way, Aron gets ALL OF THE COVERS, EVERY SINGLE NIGHT over on his side.  We snuggle a bit under one blanket, then we go our separate ways, as it were.

2. Johnny Cash or Elvis? Thin crust pizza or deep dish? Coke or Pepsi? Beer or wine or neither?

• Johnny Cash, hands down.  Love the early stuff (grew up on it) and his later stuff that he recorded with Rick Rubin is just f-ing awesome.  One of my very favorites is "Mary of The Wild Moor" - an old traditional song that is haunting and beautiful:

• Deep dish pizza with really good sauce and lots of cheese.

• I don't really drink soda.

• Good, wonderful dark beer.  Or cheap wine like "Boone's Farm."

3. I recently went through my list of blogs I follow and was at my limit so I unfollowed bloggers who haven’t blogged in at least 6 months. I want to start following some more new blogs. Who’s your fave lately? Funniest? Most inspiring? Can you link them for me??

I love my friend Jessie's blog at A Last Confession . She better not delete her blog or I'll kick her square in the ass.  It's just wonderful. Plus, of course, Fattyboobalatty at Fatty Made A Funny is also incredible as well.

4. Repeat question: Summarize your week in blog land and in real life.

Real life has been great.  I've had one of those weeks where I'm just thankful as hell for every blessing I have in my life.  My youngest daughter fell ill last night with a mystery fever which spiked in the middle of the night to 102.9 which prompted a visit to the doctor today.  A double ear infection and pharyngitis was the diagnosis and in the past 24 hours she has eaten 2 bites of frosted mini wheats, 1 bite and a half of a pbj roll-up, some mandarin orange segments, and a good bit of water.  Doc said let her eat whatever she wants for the next 24 hours or so.  Her throat was red, raw, inflamed.  So tonight she says, after eating about 2 bites of a breadstick dipped in "ketchup" (marinara) that she'd like to have a milkshake.  Aron and I said yes and I sent him and our friend after one for all of us.  He decided he didn't want one and neither did the friend so the girls and I both had one.  After the pizza I ate and all the Doritos, I sure as hell should have skipped the milkshake but didn't.  I ate my feelings for the first time in a while.  Since my children rarely get sick, when they do I have a mini meltdown on the inside and sorta freak out in private.  It SCARES me.

But guess what?  Once again comforting myself with food was a flop.  I was still scared after and all I felt was bloated.  But the upside is that I wouldn't consider what happened today a binge.  I was trying to self-medicate with food but I stopped and never did have the glazed look in my eye that's the hallmark of a binge.  So learning = good.

As for blog land, I'm trying to get back in the swing of things.  I signed up for the Blast into Summer challenge over at the Sisterhood of The Shrinking Jeans but never got an email about what team I'm on so maybe I joined too late.

I'm trying to get on a more regular blogging schedule so you can all breathe a sigh of relief.  HA!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Burst Into Summer Challenge

Today I'm starting the Burst Into Summer Challenge that's going on over at The Sisterhood Of The Shrinking Jeans.  To be entirely honest with you, I'm still reading about all that it entails and what I'll be doing but I figured why not?  11 weeks of accountability to other teammates?  How awful could that be? (The answer - not very). 

There's a FREE online bootcamp (totally my favorite price) that's posted every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  And support.  And accountability. And people going through the same crap I am.  What's not to love? 

In exploring the site over there, from what I can gather it's a wonderfully supportive community and I"m really looking forward to being a part of this challenge!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Push Past The Pain

Before this year hit I was somewhat of a half-assed worker-outer (yes, that's a word I totally just made up.)  I would go to the gym, half-ass some time on the treadmill, take a shower and go home, claiming I'd "worked out."  Mostly, I was just watching the news while walking at a leisurely pace.

Now, however - and this is just as shocking to you as it is to me - I like to sweat when I go to the gym.  It's the mark of a good workout.  My love affair with the elliptical is still going strong and I've been treating it like a game.  Each day I push myself to go a farther distance in my allotted time.  More resistance.  Longer times.  And you know what?  It's FUN.  I'd wondered in the past when I'd become that person who loved to work out, and while I don't know that "love" is the word I'd use for it, we're getting much closer to that than ever before.

Fast forward to the end of last week when I started doing Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred DVD with Joanna from Diary of A Mad Fat Woman.  Day 1, I was doing good.  It was a Thursday which traditionally I don't go to the gym on those days.  I actually finished the level 1 workout which is something I hadn't ever done before.  I've had the DVD for many months, and even "tried" it once.  And by "tried" I mean I got dressed in my workout clothes, tried a few moves and watched Jillian do the rest.

Day 2 brought with it a workout at the gym, followed by about eleventy billion (another made up word - you're welcome!)  hours of gardening....pulling up new mulch, digging, dragging heavy bags of mulch and planting and placing full containers where they needed to go.  By the afternoon I was sore.  By the evening I could barely walk, so I skipped my date with Jillian.

Day 3 brought a busy day with family, much recovery from the day before and although I didn't want to even one single bit, I completed the Level 1 workout again.  I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO SORE IN MY LIFE.  In addition, in the morning I completed a killer 30 minute elliptical workout.  When I started it, I swear to you, I felt like I couldn't even go 3 minutes, much less 30.  But I worked through the pain and the truth is, after both workouts I felt incredible  INVINCIBLE. 

Day 4?  A lot of stress and a little overeating but still - I completed my date with Jillian.  And on this day more than any other I felt a sense of accomplishment for sticking with it.  Yes, I was sore as hell, but am coming to relish that. 

Yesterday was Day 5 and honestly, I just wanted to crawl in bed and call it a day, but I dragged my ass in front of the tv and did my workout anyway. 

I love the feeling of pushing past the pain and achieving things I never though I was capable of.  I love not giving up.  I love the sense of pride I feel in a job well done.  Pushing past the pain reminds me that ALL OF THIS - this whole flipping journey - is indeed possible.  I know in my heart I can do what it takes to FINALLY make myself a success story instead of a "could have been."

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Bring Your Own Crazy Friday (on a Sunday?)

My friend Joanna at Diary of A Mad Fat Woman turned me on to BYOC, or Bring Your Own Crazy, which Drazil over at It's Just Me, Drazil & Shaniqua hosts each Friday.  I thought I'd throw in this week!


It’s Friday (or in my case, Sunday morning) so that means it’s BYOC day – Bring Your Own Crazy….to five questions we all answer in an effort to get to know each other better and to give our blog brains a break! Copy and paste to your own blog and ENJOY!

1. How and why did you first start blogging? And how long have you been blogging?

I first started blogging out of desperation.  I thought, quite literally, that my blog would be a private place for me to express my feelings/frustrations about weight loss.  I felt like I had to scream or something, and that maybe my blog could be my own little private place to do that, because seriously - who would want to read the bitching and complaining and whining and crying of a then-35-year-old woman who was carrying around 100 pounds of extra weight around. 

I started blogging on August 5, 2010 with the post "A Single Step." It was a big leap of faith for me and 189 followers later, I still can't believe anybody would want to read my stuff but I'm SO glad that you do.  The motivation and inspiration I get from the folks who take the time to read what I've written is immesurable.  THANK YOU!

2. Tell me about your perfect mate – if you could invent him/her?

I like a man who I can talk with and laugh with and who gets my slightly (ha!) off-color sense of humor.  Someone who won't make fun of me because I'm overweight or because I can't do something and someone who is kind and gentle with me.  He's someone who doesn't view spending an afternoon alone with his children as "babysitting" and doesn't mind getting his toenails painted by his daughter because it brings her such joy.

He relishes spending hours and hours with me playing board games and watching Battlestar Galactica.  He likes to have a good time and loves making me and our children laugh.  He writes me love letters on important days and never fails to tell me he believes in me when I need an extra boost.  He shares the ups and downs of his work life with me, even if I don't understand them.  He never complains if I've "forgotten" to shave my legs.  He likes to do things with me like read the same book at the same time so we can discuss it.  He tells me I'm sexy even though I don't believe it.

In short, my  perfect mate (for me), is the one I already have.  I enjoy taking care of him and he enjoys taking care of me.  In July we celebrate 14 years together.  We've had our ups and downs like all couples do, but I couldn't imagine my life with anyone else.  For realsies.

3. Do you wear fake eyelashes? Do you want to? Do you use glue or self-stick ones? Do you like how they look?

No - never really entertained the idea.  But then again, I don't really know how to apply makeup properly so maybe when I enlist Charlie over at Operation Shrink Charlie's Big Butt to help me pick out fancy pants for my 70 pounds lost goal, I can get her to teach me about makeup too.

4. Let’s say money was no object and neither was time off to recover – are you an advocate of plastic surgery after weight loss?

I do worry about extra skin as I lose weight.  I notice things becoming wobbly and shaky.  I'm doing my best with strength training and lots of water so as much of my skin will shrink with me as possible.  I don't know if I could justify the cost of surgery after weight loss but I would certainly consider having things tucked and nipped afterward if money was no object.  And I'll be honest with you.  I'd LOVE to have perky boobies again.  No lie.

5. Repeat question. Summarize your week in blog land and in real life.

My blog has suffered a bit lately since I've been back from vacation but I'm slowly getting back into blog land.  In real life, though, my weight loss life has been great.  Although from Friday at dinner until last night when I went to bed I ate more than I normally would but nothing I'd be ashamed about.  I still expect a loss this week and quite honestly I've worked out more this week than in any single other week before, so I feel great!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Psychology of (My) Weight Loss, Part 2 (Control)

You may (or may not!) remember that about three weeks ago, I blogged about The Psychology of (My) Weight Loss, Part 1 - which dealt with the highs and lows of my weight loss journey, and primarily focused on the lows.  It's no secret that I struggle with my self-image and mild depression now and then.  My focus at those times targets everything I perceive as "wrong" with myself and I let my imagination run wild and think up 10 new things I suck at or that are wrong with me.


There are times when I feel like I could take on the entire world and WIN.  My water intake is spot on.  My exercise is incredible.  My food choices are EASY and within my range.  On days/weeks like that, I feel like it's absurd that I ever felt down about myself.  I feel pretty, I feel empowered, I feel like I can do anything I put my mind to.

What's the secret?  Control.

I will admit I'm a bit of a control freak. I like things to be done "my" way because surprisingly enough I'm egotistical enough to think that my way is the right way.  That may sound funny coming from someone like me who is socially awkward and has little confidence in many situations.  But in my own head?  I'm a fucking dynamo!  I am HONESTLY trying to let go of a lot of this.  I'm consciously trying to let my daughters do things in a manner that makes them feel comfortable and empowered and not "my" way just because that's what puts me in my comfort zone.  If my husband is gracious enough to put away the dishes when they're dry, I consciously try not to put them away in the "right" places when he's not looking. 

And while I'm relinquishing control in other parts of my life, my weight loss journey is something that is all mine.  Mine to succeed or fail at.  Mine to tailor to my needs and interests.  And so I must remember on the down and cloudy days, that there will be days of sunshine, like today.  On days like today (and the three days that preceded it) I am in total control.  And that control is better than any birthday cake or ice cream sundae.  That control feels like success and success always feels good.

Anyone know how I can bottle this? 

I mentioned to a friend last night that when I'm in the zone like this, I sometimes get shaky.  To me it feels like a person with Alzheimers must feel, knowing that in a matter of time, everything they know is going to be turned upside down on them.  Sometimes I keep waiting for the "other shoe to drop" (seriously, who came up with that expression?) and I think that it's just a matter of time before I start a binge and start the cycle over again.  Maybe so, and maybe not.  But really, isn't the point that I'm having these days of clarity at all?  There was a time in my not-so-distant past that these days of clarity and determination didn't exist at all.  Now, it seems like they are edging their way to becoming the norm rather than the exception. 

That seems pretty damn exciting to me.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Addictive Behaviors in Relation to Eating

Over the past several months I've come to admit and even (partly, at least) embrace the fact that for some reason that is still unknown to me, I turn to food for comfort.  I say that I embrace that fact because 1) It is part of my psyche and 2) it  helps me to know that I'm doing something for a reason even if I don't know what that reason is yet.

The absolute truth is that I honestly believe this comfort seeking I do with food is part of a broader spectrum of addictive behavior.  I don't say this lightly - I have been doing a lot of reading on the subject and the addictive behaviors I've been exhibiting for many many years sort of speak for themselves.  Read on:

I found the following in an Indiana State University study, and the passage was Adapted from Engs, R.C. Alcohol and Other Drugs: Self Responsibility, Tichenor Publishing Company, Bloomington, IN, 1987. (c) Copyright Ruth C. Engs, Bloomington, IN, 1996:  The study findings are in black.  My responses are in red:

    There are many common characteristics among the various addictive behaviors:
The person becomes obsessed (constantly thinks of) the object, activity, or substance.
This is true with me.  I'll be honest with you.  I ALWAYS have food in the back of my mind.  I think about it all the time.  Whether it's what we're having for dinner or when the next time we'll go out to dinner is, it's always there.  Even when I'm doing really good on my food plan, I'm still thinking about GETTING TO EAT THE MOST FOOD I CAN for the Weight Watchers points I have for the day.  It's constantly in my head.
They will seek it out, or engage in the behavior even though it is causing harm (physical problems, poor work or study performance, problems with friends, family, fellow workers). 
The manifestation of my addictive behavior is evident.  I'm carrying around  70 pounds of extra weight because of it.  However, when I binge, I can FEEL the harm it's doing to my body.  I feel painfully stuffed, slow, sluggish, and full of self-loathing.  When I start a binge I know all of those feelings are coming but I do it anyway.  Sometimes I tell myself that I need to feel those feelings so I won't do it again in the future, but I always do 

The person will compulsively engage in the activity, that is, do the activity over and over even if he/she does not want to and find it difficult to stop.
When I start a binge, I have never really been able to totally stop it until ...for lack of a better explanation....I'm done.   There's almost a peace that comes over me when it's time to be done, I guess.  I will be full, to the point of nausea, but will still continue to eat until I'm "done."  Don't get me wrong.  I'm not saying it's ok to continue and continue.  I whole-heartedly believe that I need to stop, and I want to stop with everything that I am.  But I have not been able to yet.  Once it starts, it's a fight until the bitter end.

Upon cessation of the activity, withdrawal symptoms often occur.  These can include irritability, craving, restlessness or depression.
Once I have a binge, I'm usually calmed and can focus again on my weight loss efforts.  I have a period of hating the hell out of myself and  then I focus again.  Within about 2 - 3 weeks, though, I'm starting to get the "itch" again.  I'm trying hard to figure out what this itch is and why it visits me.  Is it hormonal?  Is it psychological?  This is key, I know - but so hard to figure out.  Once I get the itch it's very hard to stop the momentum of the itch.  Depression comes with it and I do get irritable.
  The person does not appear to have control as to when, how long, or how much he or she will continue the behavior (loss of control). (They drink 6 beers when they only wanted one, buy 8 pairs of shoes when they only needed a belt, ate the whole box of cookies, etc).
So true.  When I prepare a favorite food I tell myself, "Only one portion!  Exercise self-control!"  Then I proceed to devour whatever it is.  Cookies?  Forget it.  I can't eat only one.  Pasta?  I can't be normal with that either.  Ice cream is equally as tempting as is cheese.  But it's not the food that's the culprit.  It's the emotional associations I've made with the food.  Yes, all those things are freaking delicious.  But there are other delicious things I can stop with at one portion.  But somethings I can't be trusted with yet.

He/she often denies problems resulting from his/her engagement in the behavior, even though others can see the negative effects.   
For many years I didn't address my weight problems.  I let them go and just played the part of jolly fat funny girl.  It's when I got sick of being the fat funny one that I decided to do something about it.  I always attributed my weight to simply loving food.  Now I know that it goes much deeper than that.

The person hides the behavior after family or close friends have mentioned their concern. (hides food under beds, alcohol bottles in closets, doesn't show spouse credit card bills, etc).
Uh.  Yeah.  Binges always happen in secret.  Nobody has mentioned their concern but I can't fathom binging in front of anyone.  Ever.

Many individuals with addictive behaviors report a blackout for the time they were engaging in the behavior (don't remember how much or what they bought, how much the lost gambling, how many miles they ran on a sore foot, what they did at the party when drinking)  
I often feel like my eyes roll in the back of my head while I'm binging and the amount of food I've consumed completely gets away from me until I'm done.  I'm totally not in my right mind or - duh - I'd stop.  I feel powerless, hopeless, useless, and in all other ways like a waste of space when I engage in this  behavior. 

Depression is common in individuals with addictive behaviors. That is why it is important to make an appointment with a physician to find out what is going on. 
I do struggle with depression at times.  Totally not ready to discuss that with my doctor, though.  
Individuals with addictive behaviors often have low self esteem, feel anxious if the do not have control over their environment, and come from psychologically or physically abusive families.
Here's the thing.  Yes, I have low self-esteem.  I think most fat people do.  I never felt good enough to be out going, I never felt pretty enough to flirt with the guys I was truly interested in while I was in school, and I still find it amazingly sweet that my husband tells me I'm beautiful but I always feel like he's just saying that to be nice.  I do feel a bit anxious if I'm not in control of my environment, that's also true.  If something's not being done "my way," I have an overwhelming urge to take over and complete the task (getting better at this, though).  However.  I don't know that I'd classify my family as psychologically or physically abusive.  My mother's absent, that's true - and she was somewhat when I was a child, too.  My father was always around and my siblings and I tend to put him on a pedestal now that he's gone but the man also had his faults - but he was not an abusive man.  So I don't know where I get this from.


There  are lots of times when I eat for pleasure or nourishment.  I'm "off the wagon" maybe three or four days out of a month.  But those three or four days are fucking HARD.  Emotionally they are draining.  I feel like I am letting everyone down when I'm so far off plan.  I want to be there for others and help other people on their journey but when I'm off plan I feel like such a fraud when I offer support to others.  If I'm not walking the walk, I find it very difficult to talk the talk.  

I have been trying, though, the reach out when I need help.  This is very difficult but I'm trying.  These addictive behaviors are shameful but being honest with all of you about them is very liberating.   In all reality I think I will struggle with my relationship with food my entire life.  But I can get better at dealing with it and that's what I'm trying to do every day.

I'm human.  I'll falter.  But I have got to get back up.  I have got to remember that I'll be able to fight another day.  Being kind to myself isn't something that comes naturally, but it's so imperative not only in my weight loss journey but in the journey of my entire life.

As always I thank you all for listening.  Many peaceful wishes to each of you.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Guest Post: Jessie Talks About The First Rule of Weight Watchers (and coming out of the WW closet)

You've missed me, haven't you?  I knew it!  I'll be back soon with a recap of my travels and some reflections on the topic.  In the meantime, I'm bringing you a guest post from Jessie - who blogs over at A Last Confession.   She's a big source of support to me and without her, I don't know if I'd be working as hard as I have been lately.  Sit back and relax - you're in for a treat.  And be sure to head over to her blog and check her out.  I swear that you won't be disappointed - she's a great writer.


The first rule of Weight Watchers is: Don't Talk About Weight Watchers.

What? That's not the first rule? I have it confused with Fight Club? Are you sure?

Let me explain. I'm not new to this whole weight loss thing. I've been on and off of Weight Watchers many, many times over the past ten years. I kept it a secret from everyone except my immediate family because I was ashamed. I was overweight, unhealthy, and I didn't want anyone to know that I needed help. That once a week (or more, if it was a rough week), I sat in a room full of men and women who all had issues with food. That once a week, I stepped on a scale to measure my progress. I also didn't want people to know about my Weight Watching because if they knew that I was “dieting,” they would watch my progress.

They would be aware of my failure.

And fail, I did. I'd lose some weight, and then leap back into the arms of my pals Ben & Jerry. (Have you tasted their Bonnaroo Buzz? I swear they made it just for me, to try to woo me back). And because no one knew I was on Weight Watchers, no one was there to support me, remind me of my goals, or take the pint of ice cream away from me. I didn't give them a chance to support me.

I re-joined Weight Watchers in November 2010, and I swore this time would be different. And it has been. Not just because this is the first time I reached my 10% goal. Not just because I've started to exercise and I kind of like it. Nope. There's something much bigger, and more important, that has made this time different. And, I suspect, it will ensure that this will be the last time I join Weight Watchers. It will ensure that I will make my goals of losing the weight, and getting healthy.

Ready for the secret?

I tell people that I'm on Weight Watchers. I ask for help and support. And, most importantly, I listen. I take advice. Easy, right?

In real life, I don't hide my Weight Watchers journey. My family knows about it and supports me. My friends know. I got to the point where I realized that if my friends have a problem with my desire to be healthy, they're not really my friends. No one has made fun of me, or said anything negative. When I'm struggling, I let them know. They're all very encouraging, and remind me of my goals when I want to sit on the couch with a pint of Bonnaroo Buzz (seriously, it's magical, and I'd marry it if I could). 

My main network of support comes from Twitter. I was one of those people who didn't “get” Twitter, but decided to give it a try on a whim. I'm so, so grateful that I did. I met other folks out there who are on the same journey to health that I am. Some are on Weight Watchers, some are on different plans, and that's fine with me. We all face similar challenges. And even if we can't relate to something someone is going through, we can still support them. Give them virtual high-fives for their accomplishment, and a “you can do it” when they feel that they can't. I'm inspired every day by the people that I follow. 

Ultimately, this is all up to me. I know that. I control what I eat, my exercise, and how well I follow the program. No one else can do that for me. But people can be my cheerleaders, drill sergeant, amateur therapist, or whatever else I need at the moment. All I need to do is pick up the phone and call, text, or tweet.
So, please, whether you are struggling or succeeding at your weight loss journey, don't hide. Share your successes and inspire others. And if you need help, just ask for it. You just might get what you need.

Update - since composing this post for me to use while I was on vacation (I totally forgot to post it!) Jessie has reached her 25 pounds lost milestone at Weight Watchers!  Great job, Jessie!!
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