Friday, April 29, 2011

Eating in Secret

I used to do this a lot. Even when I was a child, especially when I was a child, I'd sneak food. Hide the evidence that I'd eaten it. Take it outside and hide the wrappers, or hide in my bedroom.

When I became an adult, I'd hide my snacks, my indulgences. I'd do it alone - maybe not hiding from the public, but certainly my friends. I'd go to the food court for a treat, or hit the drive-thru on my way home and eat in the car. And then I'd feel such incredible shame, and guilt, and ultimately - disgust with myself. "This is why you're fat, why don't you get it?" I'd say to myself.

I'm proud that I have stopped doing this. For a full year now, I don't hide food. I don't go out of my way to put myself into situations where I can easily sneak in some fatty, fast-food snack.

But I still hear the little voice in my head telling me to do it. This weekend it was really bad. "Just pop in to the store, buy some candy. No one will know!" and "You've got enough time to go through the drive-thru, the fast food will be tasty and make you feel better..."

I didn't give in. Now, you know that I certainly soothed myself with food, but I didn't hide it.

Are there any other secret eaters out there?

Thursday, April 28, 2011


The past week has not been a good one for me. I would say that at this point, I don't define a good week as one that shows a loss on the scale - a good week is one where I track what I eat more often than not, one where I go to the gym more often than not, and one where I feel positive about myself, my appearance and the change I've worked so hard for.

No, this week was not a good one. I'd actually say that the last 10 days were actually not very good.

It started with a shopping trip, to pick out bridesmaid's dresses for a wedding I'm in this coming September. Someone I desperately didn't want to see me looking ANYTHING but my absolute best was there and of course, the sample sized gowns didn't fit me. It was mortifying, standing there, being too fat to fit in the dresses, looking like an idiot, in front of the one person I never, ever, ever want to lose my cool in front of.

Added to the experience of the day - which, let me sum this up as neatly as I can: Because of said unique circumstance and the notion that some friendships are stronger than the circumstances that originally defined them, I went dress shopping with a friend and my fiance's ex AND her mother for seven and a half hours - I was a mess. A 'let me drink an entire bottle of wine and eat an entire box of assorted chocolates RIGHT NOW' mess.

Then my future mother-in-law came to visit. Which while it was really nice to see her, the visit was too long. And some feelings occured. And I didn't like them, so I ate them. In the form of cake. And pie. And pasta. And french fries. And more cake.

Throw in a holiday that is celebrated mostly with chocolate, an impending move, waiting for our lawyer to call us to sign away our lives for the next 30 years, and more work stress than I'd care to share in this forum, I'm a mess.

I don't like having feelings. I don't really know how to deal with them.

So I ate them.

Now I'm trying my hardest to make this week a good one. I'm ordering a bridesmaid's dress that flatters, I'm packing my lunches and counting calories, I'm going back to the gym. I've got Zumba tonight, which always makes me feel sassy and confident.

It's the best we can do, right? Try for a good week. Do what we can to make a good week, or a good day, or even a good afternoon happen.

And somehow, maybe, learn to deal with those feelings by talking or journaling or yelling at the ocean or something, instead of mowing down on three bags of chips and a whole lot of margaritas.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I'm just really not that into you

Dear Weight Watchers,

I need to tell you something, something I've been thinking a lot about lately. This isn't working for me. We're taking a break.

It's not you, honestly. It's me.

You've been a great program. You worked for me in the past, and I'm confident that when I need you again, you'll work for me in the future.

But right now, you're just not what I need.

Please understand,


So I've made a decision. This morning, after I meticulously copied my 11 months of weigh-in results and measurements over to an excel file (no export function?! thumbs down), I cancelled my Weight Watchers membership.

This is not to say that I don't think it's a great program. It's also not to say that I think it's "not working for me" - I'm not working for it.

I've always liked the Points system. I like that I don't have to count calories and fat grams. Because that seems hard and messy and it's so much easier to say, "I get 34 points a day!" rather than "My daily caloric intake is between 1400 -1700 calories."

But lately I've felt that it's just too simple. I'm not really paying attention, day-to-day, to what I put into my body. I think "meh, I can have this giant plate of fries, I've got the weeklies for it!" instead of "what have I eaten today, am I on target, have I fulfilled my basic needs first before I have treats?"

Not only am I, and all Weight Watchers users, capable of counting calories, and fat grams, and my daily percentage of carbohydrates - I want to. I want to see what percentage of my daily intake is coming from protein. I want to know if I'm eating a balanced diet, not just checking off boxes beside veggie servings. I want to be able to look at charts and graphs.

So I've decided to start using SparkPeople to track what I'm eating. It's not perfect, because nothing is. It is free, but I have no problem spending $25 or $50 a month to lose the weight. For me, that's not the issue.

I need a change. I've been tracking with SparkPeople since Friday, and I like it. I like the daily reports - at a glance, I can see if I had too much fat that day, or not enough protein. I like that it breaks out the daily calorie intake by meal - so 30% of my calories that day went to breakfast, etc.

And, I like that yesterday morning I weighed in at 205, down 2.2 lbs, and now an even 25 lbs lost.

I know it has nothing to do with not being on Weight Watchers - I could have achieved the same results if I'd been thinking really hard about what I was eating and diligently tracking - but I haven't been doing those things. And even when I have been, I haven't been seeing results.

So here it goes, the experiment. I need you guys to keep me accountable, though. I'm giving myself 3 months. If I fall off the bandwagon for more than 2 weeks, it's back to WW. If my weight gets up to 213, it's back to WW.

I'm not giving up, I'm trying something new. And I think that this might be the kick in the pants I need to make it to Onederland and beyond...

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Reasons Why

When I got up this morning, I was thinking about why, exactly, I want to lose weight. Last year at this time, I made a list of all the reasons why I wanted to make weight loss a priority, and I think the time has come to re-evaluate that list and make a new one.

I want to wear a bikini on our honeymoon.

I want to be able to do active, exciting, adventurous things and not feel like my weight or fitness level will hold me back.

I want to be healthy and fit.

I want to have a healthy pregnancy (many years from now).

I want to be proud of myself.

I want to feel like I've achieved a goal I've set.

These are just a few of my reasons. I have a strong image in my mind of myself on vacation, somewhere hot, wearing a cute sundress and dancing and just generally being happy and healthy and glowing and confident. I think that the next time I want to binge on poutine, I'll try my best to remember that mental image, and that it can be a reality. I can be that woman.

Do you use visualization to help you stick to your goals?