Hi everyone. I read through all the posts and it is such a mind provoking discussion. I have been thinking about everything you have all been saying to the point where it was honestly quite hard to work yesterday because I was having difficulty concentrating on my work
Maybe I will start be just saying how my last few days have gone. I can definitely say there is alot to be said about really listening to your body and asking yourself if you are hungry. I had hoped for confirmation that my previous eating structure was in line with my physical hunger but have definitey discovered that while sometimes it is, sometimes it is not. There is a pretty big difference between my work days and my days off, and also smaller differences from day to day. And this is also confirmation that by following pre determined diet or calorie counting or anything predetermined would mean denying certain hunger signals as well as eating when I wasn't really hungry. There is no structured diet that exists whether it be calorie counting, carb cycling, etc. that could ever perfectly align with actual physical hunger. I am hoping I will remember that last sentence next time I decide I should eat X amount of calories per day, or eat X amount of meals and X amount of snacks. So in that respect I feel quite liberated and my overall stress has definitely decreased in wondering if I am "at a calorie deficit" or "within maintenance".
However, there are other things I am still feeling conflicted about. And that is to do with specific types of food prevously on my "avoid" or only have in controlled amounts list. A couple of my work days there were as usual donuts and lemon squares in the lunch room. I asked myself did I want these and I felt like the answer was no. All week I had been taking a massive amount of food to work (I should note all "healthy, previously allowed" foods that were within my psycological comfort zone) to demonstrate to myslelf there would be no calorie limits and that I could eat as much or as little as I felt satisfied me). Also, towards the end of the day a coworker handed me a fun size chocolate bar (which happens every day routinely) and I asked myself was I hungry? And again I felt no and throughout the week the fun sized bars stacked up in my pocket where i forgot all about them. Previously when I put one into my pocket (which I did automatically because I did not allow myself to actually eat it but didn't want to be perceived as weird or ungrateful) It would literally burn a hole in my pocket I was so acutely aware it was there. Now what I am wondering is did I actually want those things and was just telling myself I did not want them. Was I really being honest with myself. The fact is, no I was not physically hungry for them. I had eaten a substantial meal not long before that I had deemed to be "the amount that would satisfy me". However, I do know most people I work with eat these treats. I know they are probably not physically hungry for them as they had also just had a substantial meal from what I could tell. I would also say I would suspect most of these people do not have eating disorders (middle aged men with average bodies, not overweight, not overly thin). So it would appear they are eaitng these for "pleasure" not for hunger. And that whole topic just brings up so many more questions for me. If normal people eat things sometimes for just pleasure sake and not for hunger, should I be doing that too? I mean yes, I could have easily eaten the chocolate or the donut or the lemon square on top of my meal like they did and yes I am sure I would have enjoyed the taste sensation, but I wasn't hungry. What do you all say to this. I have often found myself conflicted by this very question. So all I can say is this troubled me because I am not sure the answer to this is. I could eat alot of things just for the sake of pleasure.
Also something else happened that troubled me. I am also at times conflicted about wine. I really do love red wine, but I rarely indulge because it has always been difficult for me to drink it and stay "within my calories" because it is pretty high in calories per volume like all alcohol. I do love it though and could drink it every day if it wasn't for the calories. When I do decide to have it I will often make up for it somewhere in the day like skipping a snack or having a smaller meal to compensate. But one day after work my friend asked me over for dinner, and I thought what a good opportunity for me to exercise this new way of thinking and give up the control of making my own meal. He was going to pick up a rotisserie and then make other things like salad, roasted veggies etc. to go with it. So I said great, that sounds like fun and was really stoked. And it was such a nice day I thought it would be so nice to enjoy a glass of wine outside on the porch while the sun sets and before dinner. And I heard that little voice immediately say "are you sure you want the wine, it is pretty high in calories and you have already had a substantial lunch of unknown amount, and your dinner is also of unknown amount" and I recognized that my inner voice was attempting to "control" and obviously what I really wanted was a nice glass of wine. So at this point I felt really liberated and happy, just smiling like crazy, feeling like I was making so much progress. Even my coworkers were wondering why I was so happy. So I picked up the wine, got to where I was going and everything was going perfectly. I even let him pour my glass of wine which is something i almost never allowed and was a little alarmed by how big a glass he gave me but I said i will just drink what I want, no more and no less. Things were just going great and we were talking and not really realizing the time passing. Then suddenly it started getting cold outside and suddenly I started getting sooooooooooooo hungry. And then I realized that although the chicken was there, he hadnt even started on the other stuff. AND I WAS SOOOOOO HUNGRY!!! and so he then brought out the chips and salsa and my alarm bells went off so bad. I had negotiated the wine, but i had not at all considered these chips! and then i said calm down, just have some chips, not big deal. So i had some chips, and more and more and more and more and started feeling really uneasy. i started feeling urges to binge. I was panicking. i just wanted to ge out of there and hit the store. but i didn't and had dinner and then went home and went to bed. but i felt so bad. I felt like why was i overeating the chips when i had had everything in the world i wanted that day. I wondered okay what could i do to prevent that from happening again. Maybe i could MAKE SURE dinner was ready on time or bring a veggie platter in case in which case i could munch on the veggies, or maybe even a soup appetizer. Then I realized that no situation can be controlled. Sure I could make sure dinner was ready, but what if someone else was coming and we had to wait for them. Sure I could bring the veggies or something else healthy just in case but what if i still wanted the chips or both. I also thought "next time just have a handful". I then realized a truth I don't like to admit. Sometimes people just overeat for no reason. Sometimes people just want the whole bag of chips. Overeating at times is a "normal" part of like. I recall many times as a lean athletic kid with no weight problems or disordered eating being able to eat an entire bag of chips, or alot of haloween candy in a sitting, or two slices of pie after dinner when at my grandmas house. I realized that probably part of getting over my disordered eating would be to realize that overeating takes place from time to time. And I can see that that is probably my biggest hurdle to get over and honestly I'm not sure If I can. I just don't know how I can give permission and feel good about eating a whole bag of chips. And I know that is likely why now I always want the whole bag of chips, because deep down I know it is "not allowed". I've known for awhile that binging is due to restricting amount and types of food. I'm not having difficulty with not restricting the amount of my previously allowed food. I never want a bag of apples or 5 tubs of yogurt or 5 plates of brocolli. So I know when I'm saying I can have as much as i want that it is the truth. But when I say sure you can have that cookie or the chips, I am really saying "have one cookie" or "have 2 cookies" or have a "handful of chips". And I just don't know how I can change that part of me. So I am a bit discouraged with this. I was feeling maybe I should give up on all this and get back to my confort zone. it is not helping things today that I am feeling gross and bloated from an impending TOM.
But I am still trucking along. I will admit that the binging urges have gone down greatly by not being obsessive calorie counter or limiting the AMOUNT of food. I can see it will be a challenge to let go of controlling the TYPE of food and not so much even type becuase it's not overly hard to say I can have a cookie or piece of pizza, but I can not seem to let go of limiting the quantity of these food.
So I am wondering with all you who have stopped binging if you do exercise any control over these things. You said krampus that with the cookies you had two and told yourself you could have more tomorrow. Was this a negotiation? was there effort in limiting yourself to two? also, bingefree2013, I know you don't binge anymore, but do you overeat things like chips etc. and feel bad about it? And Southernmaven you said you told your daughter you stopped lowcarbing but now just "are careful what you" which sounds like there is some effort taking place there.
There is so much you all said that I would like to comment on but for now I need to stop writing (and thinking) for a bit. I am also getting hungry and "neeed to eat"
))))) Thanks again everyone.