I have been practicing IE since I first posted in this thread last year. I have definitely had some bumps along the way. But, I have lost about 20 pounds. And, unlike with dieting, I haven't only been able to maintain it for a week and then shot right back up, I have been hanging out around this weight for a while. I think I started losing weight again recently though. I haven't weighed myself in a while, but I am fitting into pre pregnancy pants and today for the first time in over 2 years, I was able to put my wedding ring back on!
Key for me has been to allow myself to eat whatever I want. I had a hard time with this. I had to kind of work up to it. Like first, instead of any treat type thing, I started out with protein bars, then granola bars, then chocolate,then oreos, and then my ultimate ice cream cake. I also made sure to buy a LOT of those, enough where I didn't worry about running out or decide that I needed to stop eating so I would just eat the rest of the box to get it out of the way. When you have 5 boxes in the pantry, that urgency just goes away. Well, it did for me and all those foods lost their forbidden magic. Then I started noticing that I felt like crap after I ate a lot of sugar, wheat and dairy. So I naturally started to look for food that didn't have it. I stopped craving sugary treats all the time and started eating more vegetables and protein. All on my own! And I have tried diets before that tell you not to eat wheat or dairy or sugar and I have lasted only a few days on those before rebounding into mountains of treat food. But when I am doing it for myself because I recognize that I just feel better, well its amazing. I enjoy it. I eat a salad almost every day for lunch now because its delicious and I love how it makes me feel, and gives me energy where as after lunch I used to be dead tired. But, these guidelines couldn't come from outside, they have to come from inside.
I also started tuning into my hunger and trying to eat only when I was hungry and stopping when I was satisfied. This took a LOT of practice. In fact, I feel like I only recently got the hang of this. It took months before I was able to leave the table without the feeling of a hurting stomach because I ate too much. But, I just kept on trying and trying to be mindful. Eating used to be stressful because I was concentrating so hard on if I was full, if I was satisfied, if it still tasted as good. Now, I barely think about it, I just eat until I am satsified. I can tell now. My body actually speaks to me and I finally hear it. I am still working on eating slower though. I still want to race through my meal. Probably because I have 3 small children that I am always dealing with and sometimes eating with. And sometimes, I still do emotionally eat, but that is ok, I just recognize that that is what I am doing and then later try to figure out why I did it. It's totally a process, and not an overnight process. Im still working on it.
Just this week I finally decided I would like to do some exercise. I have been really resistant to exercise because I used to treat exercise like food and when I finally let myself eat anything I wanted, I also gave myself permission to never exercise again if I didn't want to. But, lately I find myself enjoying moving more and I like the feeling I get when I exercise. So I started again. Im hoping because it comes from inside me, that it will be more lasting, like the eating is.
Anyway, sorry for the extreme novel.
eta: I just read my last post here from last year and I have to say I was on the right track but I only THOugHT I was legalizing foods. I didn't fully commit to the process and so eventually I ended back up craving sweet things and eating things when I wasn't hungry. It took me a long time to get out of "diet" mindset and even today I sometimes think maybe I should count calories... but I can't bring myself to do it. So yeah, its a long process, at least it has been for me.
eta2: I am obviously not saying it is neccessary to cut down on wheat sugar or dairy, I just noticed that for me I feel worse when I have wheat dairy or sugar right now and I feel better when I don't. That could change at any time, and I am totally open to that. One thing I do notice for me, is when I eat bread I don't feel satisfied and it makes me feel more hungry, the same with sugar. But I still have it if/when I want it. Like yesterday I still had a slice of my birthday cake and enjoyed it. But noticed later that I felt lightheaded, with a sore throat and was hungry again. But still, I chose to have it.