Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Beast Within

Having an off day. Not in the eating -- well, at least not yet. But mentally I'm not 100 percent.

It started last night, actually. When hubby asked me what was wrong I had a laundry list of causes: long day, messy house, PMS, which left me tired, frustrated and cranky.

And today I'm still off-kilter. I've been fighting off a full-blown headache for hours, as well as fighting off the urge to eat. When I walked into the house after work, I had a split-second thought of sneaking out my husband's leftover calzone, the half-empty ice cream container and going to town on them. Who would know? But instead, on auto-pilot I went through the motions of making my healthy lunch (a low-carb tortilla warmed in a skillet with soy cheese and leftover grilled veggies inside, topped with salsa and 1 Tbsp. fat free sour cream), ate it and made a beeline for the computer instead of the freezer.

All the while I've had these thoughts in my head, those insidious little thoughts that lead me to trouble: "Everyone's been saying how great I look. Maybe I should just stop where I am and learn to maintain at this size. Besides, the holidays are here, why not just maintain for the rest of the year, and if in January I still want to lose weight, start anew then?"

I know those thoughts. They are devious little things that sound so rational. But underneath that reasonable cover is the beast within, saying, "I want to EAT! I don't want to count calories and fat grams! I don't care how much fiber something's got. Trans fat? The more the better! I don't want to limit myself to the correct portion size! Fill me until I'm bursting at the seams!"

I could write it off as PMS, but that would be a cop-out. The truth is I've got a solid month under my belt, have been inundated with compliments, and my fortitude is weakening. I'm still coming down off the past weekend's food extravaganza and I have whetted my appetite for the upcoming "eatadays" (although in my family eating and holiday already mean the same thing).

I have to tell myself -- convince myself -- that this feeling will pass, as long as I wait it out. I don't have to give in to these thoughts and cravings. In a day or two the hormone surge will pass and I'll feel a whole lot better knowing I didn't sell myself short -- or fat.

Because the truth of the matter is, even though I am getting all these compliments and know I look and feel better than I did a few years ago, I'm not done yet. And I'm not just talking about the number on the scale, although I admit the goal to bypass 200 is a big factor. This may sound weird, but I want some extra insurance. If I'm maintaining at 190, it'd take a bit longer to balloon back up to 240, 250, etc., then if I was at 225. So if I did stumble and fall a little, I would have a little buffer there.

Besides, I really, really want to quit shopping in the plus size section! I'm straddling the fence right now depending on the store and brand, and I'd like to just tip myself right over the edge into the "regular people" section. The last few months I've really hated shopping for clothes: I feel too fat to be in the misses' section, but at the same time I don't feel like I belong in the women's section, either. It's clothing purgatory!

And most important of all, I know that mentally I still have a long way to go until I'm sane around food. In fact, I may never be a "normal" eater after all the years of overeating, dieting and other food issues I've dealt with. I've improved in certain areas, but I know I will always be prone to stress eating, party eating and entertainment eating. The trick will be learning to plan around those moments and do as much damage control as possible.

So, for today, I'm doing the best I can to quiet the beast, in my head and in my stomach. And I can hope that tomorrow will be a little easier.


Vickie said...

One of the biggest factors that has helped me stick with IT - is being unhappy with certain body parts.

If these body parts had been proportional/in line with the REST of my body - I am sure I would have stopped long ago. And you are right - others feed back has LOTS to do with this - because in the right clothes others can't SEE these problem areas.

So, I thank heavens for my belly and my other little problem areas that keep me going . . .

And you do look GREAT - wouldn't you be sad if you had come all this way and you didn't???

Vickie said...

My National Weight Control Registry packet came yesterday - I haven't had a chance to look at it yet!

Lori said...

The beauty of each day is you can decide if you want to count calories or points or say forget it. It's hard to remember how much fun you had like at the wedding and the compliments when you want your food.

You're tired, stressed out, PMSing, and these things make you more susceptible to the hidden persuaders around your house that say "eat me."

I hope today is better....