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Monday, 10 April 2017

Is this my rock bottom?

If you are following me, waiting to read how well I have done, stop reading.

I can honestly say that for the last little while I have been feeling a level of hopelessness I have never experienced before. Not hopeless like I want to die, or do something rash or drastic, but hopeless like I have let my life pass me by and I have fucked up my body and metabolism so much that there is no going back from this. I feel hopeless in a way I imagine a drug addict feels hopeless. I know what I want, I intellectually know how to get what I want but I seem incapable of taking those steps for any constant period of time to get there. I know what foods to eat to be healthy. I know I need to move my body. I even know that neither or those things need to be on any extreme level. I know that moderation in all things is the key. I know that slow and steady wins the race. I know that if I want to live a long and healthy life I need to make changes. I know that I want to be healthy. I know that I want to be more fit. I know that I want to feel and look better. I know all this but it seems the desire for these things is not as strong as the desire for what can only be described as death wish behavior.

It is no secret that I am lonely. But there is a catch 22 here. I am a social person and I want to meet more people. I want to be in a romantic relationship but I can't meet new people the way I look and feel now. The more isolated I am, the more lonely, sad and bored I am and so the more I make excuses to eat.

Something really weird happened to me last week. I was feeling like crap, I had just dropped my kid off at their fathers, which meant a few days alone for me, so I was sad and feeling lonely. I had been doing nothing consistent for months to try to get healthy. I needed a few groceries and driving to the store I had that old familiar conversation with myself about how it was time to get back on track. How my May deadline was coming up and I hadn't lost any weight or inches. I told myself I was going to get busy. How I know I will feel absolutely shitty at that event in May if I don't do something. I pepped talked myself into not wasting any more time. I got to the store and started shopping with the best of intentions. Then the weird thing happened. I started to think about how maybe I should have one last day and enjoy the foods that I loved and craved before I got back at it tomorrow. I convinced myself that since it was already afternoon it would be fine to finish out the day eating those things I know are triggers and will avoid for the next 7 weeks. I completely rationalized buying ice cream, a couple donuts and some chocolate chips to make cookies. I even convinced myself that buying the smaller ice cream carton so I wouldn't have any left over in the house was sound judgement. All this wasn't even the weird thing that I earlier referenced. I have probably convinced myself that tomorrow would be a new day hundreds of times in the 37 years I have struggled with my weight. I would just get this out of my system, blah, blah, blah. No, the weird part was what happened while I was driving home. I suddenly noticed that I was looking forward to going home and eating all that crap with the same feeling of excitement I have felt before when I was getting ready to see my former boyfriend.  I realized that I felt happy and excited in a way that I hadn't felt in a long time. It was weird and it freaked me out! I felt happy and excited about going home and eating a bunch of crap! Once I realized how good I felt about this, it made me feel bad. It made me seriously question what the hell is wrong with me? It made me wonder if the idea of eating food could make me feel this good, how was I ever going to battle that? It made me realize that I haven't felt happy since I ended things with my boyfriend. Don't get me wrong, I have had pockets of happiness and good times since then, but they have been too few and too far between. I would like to say that I don't need a man, or more specifically 'that' man to make me happy but the fact is the only time I have ever felt truly happy, day in and day out, for an extended period of time was when I was with him. It was the only period of my life that I felt like I was enough. I never felt it with my husband. I may have felt it with previous boyfriends, but I don't remember that feeling of belonging and acceptance as profoundly as I did with him. To be fair, that may have been because I was quite young, or it may have been that I didn't notice how important it was when I was young because I always felt it, or possibly because I hadn't gone through any lengthy period of profoundly not feeling it like I did when I was married.

So realizing all this on the drive home made me sad. One might think that seeing all this clearly would have made me more determined than ever to stop using food to make me happy, one might think... Truth is I felt shitty, so I went home and ate those feelings too.

The next day after eating the ice cream and the donuts and the chocolate chips, (I couldn't be bothered to make the cookies so I just melted a bunch of them and mixed in some peanut butter,) I did, once again resolve to do better, and I did. I ate well all day. I had three good meals with snacks and it was a good sensible day.

Then the final reason for  my current despair occurred. For some reason that I can't even figure out I started to tell myself that it would be ok to have a package of sesame snaps for my evening snack. Now a package of sesame snaps in of themselves is not all that bad. I had eaten well all day, why not? So despite having a lengthy conversation with myself about if I really should have them or not, and about how I wasn't really hungry, and about how it would feel great to have a really good day of good eating behind me I got up and walked to the cupboard and got the sesame snaps. It was almost like an out of body experience. I didn't really want them. I knew I didn't need them. I knew that it could possibly set things in motion that I didn't want. I got up and I got them anyway. At the risk of sounding even more crazy, it was like there was a second person there trying to talk me into it. I wasn't hearing voices, per se,  but there was a voice in my head that no matter how much I said no, would not drop it and shut up. So I had the package of sesame snaps, then I had another. Then I had a granola bar I wasn't desperately craving or even particularly wanting, then I had some more chocolate chips with peanut butter. I hated myself I little more with each thing I ate, but I couldn't stop! Ok, I could have stopped, if the stakes were real and immediate, (gun to head,) but without something that extreme I carried on until any remote chance of calling the day a win completely evaporated. So that is why I feel so hopeless. How do I combat so many years of yielding to that voice in my head? I'm 54 years old, every day my metabolism slows a bit more. Everyday I become more and more ensconced in my habits. Everyday I feel older and more like there is no hope for health, for fitness, for thinness, for happiness.

I have never felt this way before. I definitely did feel a degree of hopelessness when I was in my dysfunctional marriage but not like this. I could stand that because I had a family to raise and I believed it was important to keep my family together. I also had more social interaction because little kids get together to play, so their Mom's get together to talk. The difference now is that my family is all but raised and I don't have as much social interaction.

I know I can't spend the rest of my life feeling and looking this way, but for the first time I feel like it's hopeless. Before I always knew that when I was ready I could lose weight and get fit but now I wonder if I have waited too long. I wonder if that ship has sailed. That makes me so sad and it scared the shit out of me.

Monday, 27 February 2017

February 27, 2017

I always re-read my last post before I start a new one, just to remind myself of what my mindset was. It seems that there is a re-occurring theme. I have big plans, I'm going to really do some damage to the extra weight I carry. I have a timeline. I have goals. I do well for awhile then I mess up and throw the baby out with the bathwater. The most frustrating thing for me is that when I look back I always think, "what if...?"

Jan 5, 2017 I weighed 220.0 This morning I weighed 220.2. That would be great if I was trying to maintain a weight, however I am trying to lose weight. I will acknowledge the fact, and believe me it's no small thing, that at least I'm basically at the same place. I'll admit I'm having a really hard time not dwelling on where I could have been if I had been consistent for these last, basically 2 months. I know I need to stop that. I know that I should be celebrating the fact that I didn't gain 20 lbs in 2 months like I have at different times in my life. I know all this, but I'm having a bit of trouble talking myself into feeling it.

Actually now that I think about it, I may have gained almost 20 lbs in the last couple months. Let me explain, I did what I always do. I get all gung ho and lose 5 lbs fairly quickly. Then maybe because I get complaisant, or some event comes up that throws me for a loop, or maybe I just get hungry, or on some level I fear success, whatever it is, I lose my motivation and I gain it back in a week of weakness and gluttony. Then I get pi$%ed off at myself and start again. Lose five more lbs fairly quickly then the whole cycle is repeated over again and again.

I'm honestly really, really sad and stressed that I am not going to be looking and feeling better for the event that is coming up this week and over the next month. It is going to be so humiliating for me to see a bunch of people that I haven't seen since I gained all this weight back. Under my normal MO I would just make up some excuse and not go, (and believe me I have thought of doing that,) but that isn't possible this time. I have a old and dear friend that needs my help dealing with the clearing out of her parents home. I have seen the friend since I have gained the weight, but I haven't seen her siblings or their spouses. I'm so dreading it. I feel so ashamed. I'd like to say that the shame will work as a motivator for me, I'd like to say that, but the truth is I don't know for sure if it will or if it will just send me into a spiral of shame and eating. I guess that's up to me isn't it?

I'm also very, very sad that there is a huge, literally once in a lifetime event, coming up at the end of May and I will not be physically where I wanted to be. Yes I can make some significant change between now and then, it's 13 weeks away, but again I am a bit consumed by the fact that I wasted so much time. I've wasted so much life.

I have had a few epiphanies of late, hopefully they will stick. The first one I didn't think up, I've heard it before but I never really applied it to me. It is "Progress not perfection." I have let my desire for perfection mess me up in a few ways in the past. One, as I've mentioned, is that something comes up, and I lose my way. I have a day where I get off track and it becomes 2 days, then 3, and away I go. The really silly thing is that it might be a bad thing, like my ex being as ass, (although that honestly has very little effect on me anymore,) or me being sad or lonely. It could also be a good thing that happens, like I get together with friends or family. As happens with these events food is often a significant component and eat more than I should. Then I allow myself to think,"Ate too much yesterday, maybe just one more day before I get back on track." And you know where that goes. Another way my perfection messes me up is that I do so "well"  for a number of days that I suddenly find myself truly and actually hungry! When this happens I feel like it is more of a physical response than a psychological one. I need to eat! Then the above pattern repeats, one more day... So if I can let go of the perfection and just take one good day at a time I know I will do better. One good day, not a perfect day... so "progress not perfection."

The second thought/epiphany I had was, "I need to start to live like my life depends on it!" Because it does. The quality and longevity of my life anyway.

So once again I will write my plans and goals here. They are more realistic and attainable than before in that they don't depend on a number on the scale but on my actions in the move towards progress no matter what the speed of that progress is.

I will do my best to;

-walk 7000 steps every day. Obviously this makes my weekly goal 49,000. The reason I state that obvious fact is that I am going to give myself permission to use steps from a previous day, or make up steps on following days if I'm just not feeling the love for my treadmill sometimes.

-I am going to drink 2L of water every day. My body needs this to help my metabolism and general well being. My skin needs this to help with elasticity.

-I am going to put lotion on  my body at least once a day and I'm going to say loving things to myself  as I do.

-Because more and more studies show a link between successful weight lost/weight maintenance and getting enough sleep, I am going to strive for at least 7.5 hours per night.

-I am going to do at least 10 mins of Pilates exercises every day. When I lost 90 lbs before, waking up a little early and doing 20 mins of Pilates every morning really helped to set the tone for the whole day. I love how the Pilates makes me feel stronger and more flexible. I haven't been doing anything for flexibility for sometime so that is why, for now, I'm starting with 10 mins per day.

-When I brush my teeth 2 times a day, rather than just standing there, I'm going to do something to strengthen  my legs and increase  my balance. This will be something like squats, leg lifts or going up on my tip toes over and over. Just moving someway.

-At least some of the time when I watch tv I'm going to sit in the rocking chair and rock, or sit on the Swiss ball and gently bounce or move. Obviously this in of itself isn't going to make a huge difference but it will mean I am moving, at least a little bit more.

-I'm going to track what I eat. I'm not going for perfection here. I'm going to eat what I want, but I strive to be accountable and eat at least reasonable well. I hate to harp on this, but when I lost the weight before, I wasn't on any diet. I ate what I wanted, I just ate it in reasonable amounts.

I have never been a post every day kind of gal, but I do wonder if I made a commitment to post more if it would help me to be accountable? I'll give that some thought. Be forewarned, you may be seeing more frequent and more, (is it possible?) boring posts from me.

As always, thanks for reading and feel free to post a comment.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Happy January 5th, 2017!

Last time I blogged I weighed 213.4. I made plans for a 2 week challenge, and I actually stuck to most of the things I challenged myself to for the 2 weeks. I was good with what I ate. I did a pretty good job with the water and the steps. I worked on saying nice things to myself while I put lotion on my body. I even got quite a bit done on that never ending "to do" list. I didn't blog, but my goal was pretty loosy goosy on that one.

So for 2 weeks I did quite well I'd say... and I lost (drum roll please...) 1-half pound! That's correct. 0.5 lbs. O.K. so I was on a plateau, I had lost almost 30 lbs all together mind you. Plateaus are normal, natural and to be expected. Yes I knew they happen, Yes I knew that it's a common occurrence, maybe even scientifically necessary. Yes I knew all this but that didn't stop me from being thrown for a loop. Or rather allowing myself to throw myself for a loop. I was disheartened! I want results and I want them now!! It's not like I have never heard the expressions "slow and steady wins the race," or "it's a marathon not a sprint." Sure I knew all this but it didn't stop me from becoming frustrated and hopeless. So I kind of said "screw it." I stopped making an effort to get those steps in, or drink the water, or work on the 'to do' list. My couch became more appealing than my treadmill and I started to coast. Interestingly this time I didn't say screw it and eat everything in sight. I was kind of still watching what I was eating, not diligently, but it was on my mind. I didn't want to gain the weight I had already lost but I certainly wasn't "working at it." A strange thing happened. I really didn't gain weight back. I didn't lose any more, but I didn't really gain. I was still weighing myself everyday and that was motivation enough for me to keep things between the lines, so to speak. I just danced around the 212.9 lb mark for a couple months. I made it through Halloween and didn't gorge myself on candy, even though there was tons around here. I made it through November, and December. I was staying where I was all the way through Christmas. It was a miracle! I was pretty pleased with myself for only gaining about 1.5 lbs in the couple months I had just been coasting.

Then an interesting thing happened, We had to have our Christmas celebration on Christmas Eve this year because I'm a divorced Mom. My family and extended family was here for our dinner on Christmas Eve. I made all the usual dishes, I didn't overindulge at all, food wise or otherwise, it was a successful day. My kid and I hung out on Christmas Eve after the extended family left. Christmas morning we got up and opened our stockings then I had to drop the kiddo at my ex's at noon. My family did come back for our traditional Boxing Day lunch of leftovers, (on Christmas Day this year.) We visited and played games, but everyone left about 7.

Then BAM!! A black cloud of sadness, loneliness and self pity descended on me like the lead vest they put on you when you are having an x-ray. In my delusional state I felt like the only thing that would make me feel better was to eat. I had tons of chocolates and nuts and cookies and baking in the house before Christmas and I didn't eat even one thing, I honestly didn't want it, but on Christmas Day, and every day since then, I have been eating like I may never eat again. I'm not really even sure how it's physically possible, but in the past 12 days I have gained 5.6 lbs. Now maybe some of that is water since I have been eating a lot of salty nuts, but still. Wow.

I guess the up side is that unlike other times in  my life when I've lost weight, then lost my way, I didn't wait until I gained all the weight back, or a huge chunk of it back, to get back on track. I need to count the fact that I am ready to put a stop to this foolishness now at 5.6 lbs,  as a victory.

So here we go, again...

I've got a few things coming up this spring and summer that I really would like to be looking and feeling good at. (Not to mention I have the rest of my life that I would really like to be looking and feeling good at.) First thing is the 3rd week in March, approximately 10 weeks away. It would be great to be 30 lbs lighter by then, lol, hell it would be nice to be at my goal of 75 lbs down by then, but neither of those things are going to happen so I am going to do my best and work for somewhere between 10 - 20 lbs down by then. The next big thing is at the end of May, 20 weeks away, after that it's the end of June, 25 weeks away. Then first week in July, 26 weeks away. I can't predict how much weight I'll lose but I can say that I am going to do my best to keep my eye on the prize so when each of these events come I will be able to say that I did the best that I could.

Jan 5, 2017 - 220.0 lbs.

Another long post, but I think it helps me. Maybe it helps you too, to fall asleep, haha. Glad to be of service. ;)