Tuesday, May 01, 2007

A Different Way

Thanks for all the encouraging, supporting comments yesterday. It really helped pull me out of the funk I was wallowing in and made me see the positives that are there, even if they're hard to see sometimes.

The crazy thing is, as out of control I felt on Saturday and Sunday, I seem to magically return back to sanity on Monday. For example, somebody dropped off some doughnut holes at my office yesterday for the Pastor and me to share; I wasn't tempted in the least and gave the pastor the entire bag when he came into the office. And this morning I had to go the bakery across the street (they recently got bought out and I had to talk to the new owner about getting communion bread); I found myself walking out and realizing I hadn't even taken a good look at what was in the display cabinets and hadn't even considered buying anything.

The only way I can explain it is that my weekday routines are so ingrained that my brain immediately falls into that groove I've created where Monday thru Friday= no compulsive eating. Yet when Saturday and Sunday come it's like a werewolf under the full moon. All my rational, higher thinking processes fly out the window and I revert to some starving animal who must consume everything in my path to survive.

I am learning that I am falling into a common syndrome of dieting and binge eating that becomes a vicious cycle. While I have tried hard not to be a "dieter," I have still adopted the general mindset that involves legalizing certain foods and banning others, which leads to rebound eating to compensate for that feeling of deprivation.

There has to be another way. As luck would have it, my package arrived yesterday full of books on Intuitive Eating. I started in on the first one and I'm already getting caught up in it. I've read other books that touched on this subject before, and I've learned things from each one, but I always felt I needed to lose some more weight before I could really do it. Even though these books say most people will lose weight once they give up dieting and eat in response to their bodies, the skeptic in me was sure I'd wind up gaining a bunch first, and I wanted to make sure I was low enough to give myself some "insurance," if that makes any sense.

I'm still not at that insurance weight, but it's becoming more clear to me that I need to find a better way to live, regardless of what I weigh right now. It's also getting to the point that my mental wellness and a saner relationship with food is becoming more important than a number on a scale.

This Intuitive Eating process involves cognitive behavioral therapy, which I really embraced early on in this journey. But the truth is I got caught up in the euphoria of the weight loss and became more and more of a dieter. I may not have joined WW or followed a specific plan, but I started limiting, started counting, started labeling foods and my eating behaviors as good or bad.
I don't regret this, because I did learn a lot about nutrition, portion sizes and feeling my hunger. The latter was really important, because for years I never quit eating long enough to ever let myself get hungry. Sometimes I let myself get too hungry, but that was a learning experience, too. A lot these intuitive eating methods are based on following a scale of hunger, from absolutely famished to overstuffed. At least now I've gotten in better touch with my body and know what these things are.

The other good thing about limiting and weighing food was coming to the realization that I could often be satisfied with much smaller portions than what I previously ate. I now can do a good job at eyeballing a regular portion of meat or a cup of grains and know that I can often be quite content eating that amount of food.

The problem has been my perfectionism, my all-or-nothing thinking, not to mention my low levels of OCD that drive me to take things to the nth degree.

So I'm hoping I can take these books and make a serious effort to try their techniques. That means letting go of the dieting mentality, which means, at least for now, putting this Onederful Bound goal on the back burner. I'm not totally giving up on the concept of reaching 199, but if it happens, it'll occur in a different way, not with dieting. If my brain can grasp these concepts I'm reading about and my body wants to go in that direction, then it'll happen. But I'm just tired of forcing the issue and putting myself through this rollercoaster.


Ty said...

I totally agree with everything you have posted. Though I do use the Weight Watcher's points system to keep track of my intake, I try to only eat when hungry and stop when my body has had enough.

I'm also trying not to focus too much on the scale because the numbers on the scale really aren't a true reflection of my progress.

As you know, I'm trying to stop the binge eating/emotional eating. That is just as important to me as losing weight.

I've also learned that while all foods are ok for me to eat, some are not good for me to eat.

Take care!

Beula said...

I'm with you. This weight thing has taken over my life. Is that good or bad? Feels bad. I want to get to goal weight so I can quit thinking about it every damn minute. Is this possible? Is it a lifelong battle or at some point have you learned this lesson and get to move on to better things? I am so ready to move on.

lisa jane said...

lovely to 'meet' you. I adore Lori ;)
send me your email adress and I can give you an invite to my other blog, but I'm not sure that it has a whole lot of IE stuff anymore, it is my private blog for stuff that I can't really talk about on my other one.But you are still welcome to read if you wish.

come over to Peaches and Cream @ ning .com, an IE discussion board, its lovely and I post there a lot.

see you soon :)