(yes, that's my big bootay-after losing 100lbs.)
Today, is a struggle within myself. I will win. But, it is a struggle. I started to reply to another blog and decided just to write this instead. This is mostly for me and it is long and winding. But if this helps you , then great. If not, fine. If you want to criticize it , keep it to yourself.
I did many things to lose the 135 lbs I have posted in my blog header. I'm not counting all of the multitudes of diets in the past or the boxes filled with old food journals, diet magazines, the 5 or 6 weight watcher memberships, the Biggest Loser booklets. I start counting at about 2006 when I got scared and got serious.
I did it with diet and exercise and not surgery.( Though many doctors generally think that surgery is the way to go. I am a true addict and I don't think it's my way.) But this is what worked for me in the past: Sometimes very restrictive, sometimes 1200 calories, then at different times 1400 calories to 2100 calories based on a dietitian's guidance. Sometimes not eating out for months at a time. At times, I counted carbs, counted calories, counted exchanges. I ate foods from 3 different meal delivery programs. I allowed sugar , I didn't allow sugar. More things, many more. At times I saw a nutritionist, group therapy , therapy , OA, not OA. I prayed a lot. And the mainstay: gradually increasing and consistent exercise.
It all worked. And then at times , it all didn't. I had to change the game , lower the calories, increase the calories, increase the intensity of exercise, and whatever else. Give up control. Take back control. Will power. Failure again. Renew and restart and renew and restart . Over and Over and Over.
What actually worked, and the core of what works for anything is when my mind and spirit and body were joined together for this purpose. I was in a zone of doing it, loving myself, and believing I could do it. This involved unveiling the crap inside me and underneath, and overcoming fears. And it always involved being willing to adapt the game plan whenever it wasn't working. So, all those different tools and restarting over and over and hope and renewal actually did work.
Sometimes I had to shut out what people said to me or suggested to me because I knew it messed with my head or was not right for me. Sometimes I had to listen. I'm learning still that sometimes things I read in blogs or media are right for me or deadly wrong for me. I have to discern. I look back at my journey in awe of myself at times. How did I do that? or that? Other times I look back with anger and shame and guilt.
I would sometimes get SO in to "the zone" of the food/ weight loss life, that things got way off track too . Maybe a little over the edge in the excessive compulsive way that had me going to the gym 2 to 3 hours a day several days a week and feeling guilty if I missed a workout for the day. Getting afraid, actually afraid, of driving down a street where I passed trigger places. Let alone going to a trigger place ( Whole Foods, Starbucks, Trader Joes). Realizing that I knew that I was freaking out inside when I shared a piece of a dessert with a non food addict friend and she cut it in half giving me the half without the icing. How could she not realize it should be cut so that we get equal portions of the icing?
It really didn't occur to her.
I haven't kept the whole 135 lbs off and that disappoints me. Even when I'd lost the 135, I didn't get to a size 10 or 12--I was squeezing in to 14's and 16's for the first time since grade school. I think my body would look freakish if I got too small. I'm fighting most days to prevent gaining and other days I'm losing the battle and eating what feels good. Regaining and losing the same 10 lbs. I've maintained about a 100 lb weight loss for close to 3 years now. But , some of the clothes I wore last year are tight or don't fit at all. I'm scared I'm going in the other direction. Scared. That's what motivated me in the first place.
My baseline of abstinence is not to binge and not to obsess on food. Bottom line, those are the lowest of the low for me and what I most want to avoid. 90% of the time I can be right on a healthy eating plan with the right calories intake and expenditure to lose weight when something goes haywire. Then there is that 1 evening binge that throws me off course or a trip or meal out that shifts the balance. I analyze through and try to pick out the how , why, what , when , and wheres that throw me off course. I work on it, but it's not working. And I realize that much of the time I don't even focus on dieting or weightloss because I really just want that baseline abstinence of no food obsessing and no binges. Afterall, I am powerless over food.
Something my therapist said to me makes sense to me. I know how to be a strict dieter/exerciser and I know how to lose control and be "in the food". What I don't know how to do is to be in the middle of all that. To maintain that space between or to be a little closer to the losing weight / maintaining lifestyle without going over the edge or all the way back to full binge mode. It was that mind / body / spirit of being "in the zone" that didn't let me dip in to forbidden foods and behaviors which made me push through so that I could lose weight in the first place. Where did that go?
As I write this I guess I'm defining for me where I've been and where I'm at today. I know it will never be perfect. I'll always really,I mean really , love food. I'll always have to exercise my body. My body isn't allowing me to over-do exercise any more ..... Hello, pain. But the body requires exercise and the right kinds and I'm working towards that. The body requires food and water and many other things and I'm working towards that too. My spirit and mind require their own food and water and energy too and I work at that more and more these days. So much. Again, it is finding how to be in that pesky middle ground.
I recognize that whatever I had that allowed me to harness the ability to push through and be "in the zone" isn't gone but is not connected or is maybe dormant or ready to be reformed or maybe will remain ever-shifting. And then there are all those tools I've used in the past. What next? Which one? Hmmmmm , much to consider.
Makes sense? No? That's ok. It helped me a little to put it out there.
My attempt at stand up paddle in Kauai
2 hours ago