No Sugar “Sweets” aren’t so sweet

Posted by lettucelose on December 9th, 2011 |Filed Under Keeping It Real |

Week of May 20, 2011:

Well, I have already had about 1/2 of my daily calories and it is only 6:45 a.m. I would call that emotional eating. The more I eat the more I want to eat too. I slept 1 hour before getting up to take some additional Tylenol PM. I had a cup of milk to wash that down with, one serving of sugar free chocolate chip cookies and 2 cold hot dogs. Then, I started to feeling somewhat hungry so I had 2 servings of cold cereal with some lite soy milk. Soon after that I made some toast with natural peanut butter. Now, all of these foods are healthy (the hot dogs might be the only questionable one due to fat -although this is a lower fat one-and the high sodium) but I am eating and I would continue to eat if it weren’t for the fact that I know that I shouldn’t. I’ve stopped for now but I know if I allowed myself I could continue eating until I had eaten several more hundred calories. Why am I doing this?

For all the reasons that I shouldn’t be. Maybe, the cup of skim milk could be “justified” because I take that with my sleep/ pain medicine and coating my stomach isn’t all that bad of an idea but the rest is partially because the food is readily available, my guard is down (I’m sleepy but not yet that sleepy) and because I have “allowed” myself to do so. It just goes to show you that I have my work cut out for me when it comes to eating when I am not hungry. This habit alone will keep me obese, if I allow it to. In fact, right now, I feel like going into the kitchen and eating a lot more until I am very full. That is the set up for a binge so that tells you I am feeling emotional right now even if my eyes are getting sleepy and I really couldn’t tell you what I am feeling emotional about.

I would not have labeled this “emotional eating” until I read the Day devoted to that in the BDS pink book. I began calling it “distracted eating” but Dr. Beck labels that as “emotional eating” so I guess it is. Actually, any reason you are eating other than hunger could/should be labeled “emotional eating”. Well, I will return to bed shortly and I will probably sleep through the time I would normally eat lunch so when I get up I will probably eat either an early supper or, if I can, hold off and eat a later dinner. However, this sets up long stretches where I am not eating as a result. It is not the healthiest way to eat, that’s for sure.

Well, at least, I am detached enough about this that I can observe my behavior as it is happening and see how the dots are connecting with each other. As she states so emphatically, stop at that moment and then proceed with your next OP meal when it is scheduled to happen. Well, time to give myself credit. I managed to go through several nights this past week without “emotional eating” so I have to acknowledge I have done it so I am capable of doing it again. Right now, I am going to return to bed. When I get up I am going to take a shower and maybe what might be a good thing to do is put on a Richard Simmons STTO dvd and that might help me sweat off some of the sodium-induced weight I gained over night and also maybe help drop  1/2-1 lbs besides.

I am very grateful that we can “afford” to buy the food that will “support” my food plan and healthier way of eating. I hope that I will be able to continue to do this “moving forward” and not have to cut back so I’m not able to try new recipes and foods. I just love to look into our cupboards and refrigerator and see all of the healthy choices I have available. Since we do not have health insurance nor can we afford to be self-insured, I have often “drilled” P about how eating healthy is our “assurance” in avoiding seeing the doctor.

I received my sugar free food I ordered online. It came within 48 hours. I was hoping that the assorted snack pack were of everything they offer. Instead, it was two of the things I had bought on Monday and a third one: pecan walnut brownies. I gave one to Paul to sample. He didn’t think they were half bad. I didn’t either. What I like even more is that I can truly stop at one package without feeling like I have to eat more and more. That is another advantage of eating no sugar and an important one: I have better control over how much I eat when I do eat it. However, the main disadvantage is that I have been quickly substituting eating sugar free cookies, brownies or a Klondike bar for healthier alternatives like raw vegetables or fresh fruit as my snacks.

I began reading the “Biggest Loser” Fitness book. According to this book, this is the workout that they put the contestants through while they are on the ranch. Or it is implied anyway. Essentially, it is a combination of circuit training followed by cardio. So, that is exactly what I am going to do. They have several different levels even within Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. I think I could follow up with doing a RS dvd afterwards. That should make a person good and tired after doing that! You’re supposed to do it in such a way that you are moving very rapidly through the different “core” exercises so I would say that by the time you get to the cardio you are well warmed up and ready to hit the ground running when it comes time for the cardio. All of this is supposed to be done at 80-85% of your target heart rate.

Well, we have a heart rate monitor on our treadmill and I could take my heart rate with my fingers like the way everyone “used to do in the old days” but now everything is electronic so I decided to go ahead and order a heart rate monitor. With an extended one year warranty and taxes, I paid $65. In order to deflect the cost of the extended warranty, I decided to have it shipped to the Dunwoody Wal-mart. I was going to wait on this until I had lost 50 lbs or more but I really do want to get the full benefit out of these workouts. It did have some medical questions that it asked beforehand: have I had chest pains when working out (I have some very mild ones when I start up the first time after a long absence but they go away within a few minutes and don’t return the second time I work out), do I have any joint problems (yes!), etc. but I can take it slow and work my way up too. I really want to do this. I know that it will help me sleep better, feel better emotionally and it will definitely help me burn up calories and I won’t be so worried if I stray a little bit from my food plan. After this past weekend, where I just really felt like I couldn’t face another strict day of dieting, I knew it was time to bring this part of my plan back into full force. I logged what I ate late last night but when I do that it “cheats” me of the calories I need for “today” and now here I am right before bed, snacking on cereal and sugar free cookies.

I continued to read through the Biggest Loser Fitness Program. As soon as I have become more acquainted with it I am going to start it. I am sure that I won’t be going at 80% of my target heart rate at the beginning anyway but I might have worked up to that by the time the heart rate monitor comes. I think it will help me burn enough calories where I can eat about the same amount of calories that I am eating now and lose weight. At least, that was the case last summer. I do not look forward to eating any less than what I am eating now. There is an overview of their food plan and the calories are really low. Which surprises me because they have me at such a high calorie range right now. Well, time will tell how much I need to cut to see a consistent weight lose. As I mentioned to P, if their calories are that low on the ranch how do they manage to do the workouts? When I was going at my peak a few months ago I was so wiped out I had to take a nap shortly afterwards.

5/24/11:

Before I went to bed I finished off an open bag of the sugar free cookies. They don’t have a lot of taste–remind me of vanilla wafers–but they were hard and had that “crunch factor” that I like when I want to eat indefinitely. I knew while I was eating them that I could end up with a lot of intestinal gas because of the sugar alcohols. By the time I finished it off I really had an off after taste in my mouth. I slept for awhile but I was quite restless the past hour so I finally got up. I still feel full to my stomach from those cookies. I’ll take some more Tylenol PM and go back to bed shortly after. I hate to log those cookies but I will. I think I had around 20 cookies, which is around 475 calories. No sugar but still calories. Well, it feels like they are just sitting in my stomach so I am not feeling hungry right now so I guess that will be considered my breakfast calories!  I am hoping that once I begin exercising daily and actually work off some of this free floating anxiety some of this “emotional eating” will cease.

I got that book “Treat Your Own Knees” yesterday in the mail. It is a very small book written by a physical therapist. I hope it has some good tips in it. What awoke me an hour ago was the muscles in my thighs were hurting along with my knees. If I could both get my pain subsided before I go to bed and then while I am sleeping I am sure I would be able to move forward on all of this. Well, I will do all I can to try different home remedies. I would love it if I could get to a place where I could walk without the cane and have strong enough legs to carry me through a level ground walk.

I’m still waiting on the green book for Beck Diet Solution. According to the time frame, the latest expected delivery would be May 31st. I think this is the longest that I have ever had to wait for a shipment. Wal-mart’s “site to store” can also be lengthy but I got the extended warranty so I figured that I would have to cut back on shipping costs. I think I am doing the right things to move towards a healthier life. I just have to be patient with the process.

Well, another thing I have to be patient with is my sleep patterns. I felt that I was only up less than two hours.  I ended up sleeping from 7 a.m.-3:30 p.m. I awoke rested but still I feel “weird” that I am not sleeping throughout the night but it seems like I can sleep in the later morning and through the mid-afternoon. Last night I slept lightly and awoke a couple of times because of the muscles in my upper legs bothering me and then, of course, my knees.

Well, after eating the rest of the opened package of sugar free cookies I waited expecting to have diarrhea and a lot of gas. I did have gas and I felt like I had a rock in my stomach for several hours! I didn’t eat anything until around 4 p.m. and even then I wasn’t very hungry. Does this sound very sane? No, but I did log it and I did share it with the others in my Beck group, especially when someone asked if it were okay to eat intuitively. My answer was yes since Beck Diet Solution does not endorse any particular diet as long as it is healthy. I think you can eat intuitively and eat healthy. I told her that I felt that to some extent I do eat intuitively since I don’t plan my meals the day before. I just don’t like to. However, I do log what I eat as the day goes on. I am very good about doing that. I also make sure that I am not straying far from my food plan and I do try my best to eat within the recommended calorie range. I keep what is known as a “clean kitchen”. In other words, I don’t have anything that is considered not healthy in either my cupboards or refrigerator.

However, my biggest obstacle to losing weight is the fact that I am not only a couch potato, I am fast going to seed. Well, I plan on doing something about that very soon. I am almost finished reading the Biggest Loser Fitness book. The last time that I worked out that hard I got so tired I got in the habit of needing to take a nap afterwards. My appetite also increased. However, the biggest benefit I know that I will gain from exercising is that weight will come off plus I will also be able to eat more without regaining what I lost. That is very good news!

Tonight was the finale show of “Biggest Loser Season 11-Couples”. One of the two sisters won the grand prize. Both looked amazing! Probably the best looking of all the final contestants on any of these shows. In fact, one of them got down to 120 lbs which I think is almost unheard of on that show. I think what was to their advantage is each other so their motivation remained high throughout the entire program. They also managed to hang in there and not get eliminated like a lot of the other contestants. Also, one used to play volleyball so she had some muscles underneath all of that extra fat. The other one was an opera singer and I am certain that she knew how to be disciplined in order to succeed in that field.

I also noticed that a lot of the people, including one person(C) that I really thought would return home and blow the rest of the people away, didn’t do as well once she got home. There were some exceptions though. One woman, aged 59, won the $100K at home prize, and I think she lost half of her body weight. One guy who was at the ranch almost to the last couple weeks also did remarkably well. Then, there was one who left almost 4-6 weeks ago that lost a significant amount of weight. I could tell by the reaction of Bob and Jillian that they were both surprised and very pleased with those at home “losers”. So, I would say that the “at home” losers were a divided group. Half did really well and then there were some who probably struggled more once they got home. My guess is that they couldn’t find enough motivation on their own to keep it going.

Well, inspired by that show, I decided that, in spite of 1 hour of sleep during the night, I would push P and I out the door today. He didn’t have any work and rather than he sit around all day and I sleep all day that is what I did. We did find the D Green Market. It was amazing that we even found it at all because there were more twists and turns to the road than you can imagine. We got fresh Swiss chard and arugula. I think we paid too much for them ($4 a bag) but these types of market do have a tendency to run kind of high. Then, we found (also another twist and turn) the D Nature Preserve. I did something I haven’t attempted in quite a long time. I got out and I walked (with my cane). I knew P wouldn’t be all that interested if I sat on a bench and he “explored” on his own (we’ve tried that before).

Anyway, we ended up our “running around” by eating lunch at GC. I have a good handle on eating there. I am able to find what works on my food plan and then I eat it. I don’t even consider going over to the bakery area. I did pose the question to the Beck support group about pre-planning meals. I am not so sure that I am really deviating all that much from what they do. However, one person made a note that they really ramped up their exercising which is what I am going to do from now on. I did tip over 3000 mg sodium today and my calories were at the top of my calorie range but I also moved, even if it felt laborious at times. My knees felt swollen after I laid down for a brief light sleep nap. I also noted that I was breathless just moving around and I felt my heart although I wouldn’t say it was chest pains. It made me feel sad a little because it really shows how inactive I have been and what a toll it has taken on my “heart health”.  The “good news” is that with persistence I should be able to strengthen my heart muscle as well as the rest of my body. Once I get that heart rate monitor I will know how much I am working my heart but also how many calories I will be burning. Both were be important pieces of information in helping me to know how I am using the calories I am taking in but also what I need to do to lower those calories taken in so that I am losing on a steady basis.

So, for under $20 I have two dvds on the way here. They are scheduled to come within a couple of weeks. I’m not in any hurry really since I doubt whether I am in good enough shape to even crack them and I want to get my heart rate monitor first so I can see how “unfit” I am so I won’t push myself too fast too soon, I am more than okay with that.

What I am hoping I will be able to do is have all of this come together at about the time that I am able to really put it to practice. In the meantime, I also hope that I can slowly get back to being more mobile around here and in general. So, any kind of working out that I can do in the next couple of weeks will only help me prepare for the more rigorous working out that I am sure these two dvds will be. The 30 Day Shred (Jillian Michael) is really hard on the knees so I also hope that I will have finished reading that book I got recently and whatever it says to do to “treat my own knees” I will be doing that as well. Although I feel a little sheepish about ordering all of this stuff, given our present financial circumstances and the fact that we are living on one income, I do know that I will use this all and it can only help me move beyond my inactivity and how that impacts not only my joints but also my weight lose too.

Speaking of which, I am still hanging around 267-269 lbs. Again, I think that once I start working out more diligently I will begin to burn up some of those extra calories that I am finding so hard to “resist”. I am not sure if the “falling off the wagon” this past weekend was hormonal-driven or emotion-driven or both. It seemed to correct itself yesterday and I found myself being able to stay OP(on plan) relatively easy. I wasn’t tempted at all when we ate at GC although because of the amount of food I ate, I did end up being at the top of my calorie range and over my sodium range. Still, I felt it was a more “sane” day of eating overall.

We are also well aware of how precarious our financial situation is. I think, on one level we are in denial. I think it helps to get through what has been a very long and protracted period of  financial hardship. We have gone from the frying pan into the fire and we’ve been walking on hot coals, especially for the past 7-8 months since my unemployment ended. Looking back on it, I think I did the right thing for me but that also points out how stressful being so strapped can be for people and how that in itself becomes a struggle besides the rest of  the things you are dealing with. I will say though that at times I am “proud” of how well I/we have done in spite of the formidable challenges we have faced. It certainly does bring out your resourcefulness. We try to do the best with what we have.

[Note: I have been keeping a ongoing private journal separately from this diet blog which I am now incorporating some of that material into this blog. Dates written are actual although published at a much later date.]


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