Weight Loss Support - I'm quiting tomorrow and I'm terrified
11-17-2008, 06:32 PM
I have been a smoker for a year and a half. I have decided for weight loss/health/financial reasons that it's time to quit. I literally can't afford it anymore, I don't have a job and I'm a student. I am also sick of being sick. I've had 3 colds in a month and a half, bad ones at that. I was going to wait untill December 1st but it's now or never. So I'm quiting tomorrow....and I'm really scared. I don't know how I'll handle it. I've been working really hard on not bingeing, its been 28 days and I'll be so upset if I cave because I'm not smoking.
So I need some advice, I've read a few posts here about quiting. I don't know how to stop myself from stuffing my face. I don't want to gain, I want to keep losing.
I'm scared I'll be really horrible to everyone as well.
But despite these fears I know its for the best, and I do really want to quit. I'm going to try cold turkey and see how it goes, it was my strategy with binges as well. If it doesn't work I'll cut back.
I'd appreciate any words of wisdom!
11-17-2008, 06:39 PM
Eating is not going to make it any easier to quit. Cake, cookies, and chips do not have nicotine, which is what you're actually craving for the first few days. After the addiction wears off, you'll be left with a situational/psychological addiction - for instance, I had a very strong association between eating dinner and smoking. Every day for years I would smoke after dinner. This is the hardest part to overcome in my opinion, and you'll be successful so long as you plan ahead and develop a coping mechanism for these situations. Some people chew gum. Some do something to occupy their hands, some get their minds off smoking by reading or walking. I stocked up on sugar-free popcicles and had one of those if the urge got too bad.
You can definitely do it, and it is so worth it! Take it one day at a time and after every day passes, think, "I've made it a day (two days, three days). Do I want to give in and have a cigarette, thereby erasing all my great progress, or do I want to pull through and keep moving forward?"
Or, set it up as a personal challenge. "I've made it a day. Can I make it to two?" This was my grandfather's strategy when he decided to put aside his 40+ year old habit!
11-17-2008, 06:41 PM
Hi Maddie! I just quit last Friday after over 20 years of the dumb habit. I sure wish I had been as smart as you and quit before I wasted so much of my life on the stupid plant. It's just like the weight loss - you have to really want to do it. It's not easy but it can be done. I'm not particularly having a fun time but I'm learning how to do things like drive to work without a smoke. Also had a couple of scary close calls but managed to think of the things I've already managed to change about myself and hung in there - only 3 days down and a lifetime to go ;) It is a pretty scary venture but you can do it!! It's every bit as important for our health as losing weight is!:^:
11-17-2008, 06:47 PM
Maddie Good Luck! Congratulations on making a healthy decision! You CAN do it! Tomorrow is my 3rd year anniversary of quitting... not one puff. It can be done! I smoked since I was 12 and quit at 35, count... 22years! I was so ingrained with what I saw life as, my habits! arg!
Anyways, heres what worked for me. Determination. I knew I had to quit! I was not going to light up again!
Also, deep breathing! Everytime I wanted a cig I would go outside and take a deep breath... filling my lungs with life giving oxygen instead of life taking chemicals.
Next, prayer. LOts of people praying for my quitting!
And lastly, guided imagery. A cd that helps you do self hypnosis. Guided imagery every night for about a week from the cd, then on my own whenever I needed it... mostly as I did deep breathing.
Ohhhhhhh, I feel your anxiety! I am in your corner, rooting away! Keep checking in, let us know how your doing, ask for help/support anytime you need it! I quit cold turkey too. It was the best way for me. I tried patches, gum and tapering off slowly, none worked. But the last time I quit, I was COMMITED!
Someone once told me this... quitting is easy, you quit every night when you go to bed. Its when you wake up in the morning that you decide to START again.
Be good and good luck!
11-17-2008, 06:48 PM
Also, I started knitting and crocheting... do something with your hands! ;)
11-17-2008, 07:06 PM
No advice, since it's not anything I've had to do personally (I have other bad habits. :)) but I do want to say GOOD LUCK and congrats on the decision. It's a huge undertaking (I am the only non-smoker in a family of smokers) and I have seen how hard it can be. I'll be sending good positive vibes your way.
inspired by you
11-17-2008, 09:04 PM
What worked for me was white tic tacs. Every time I wanted a cigarette I grabbed a tic tac. It still wasn't easy, but the mints kept me from wanting to stuff my mouth constantly. oh, and walk, walk, walk. Good luck. My thoughts are definitely with you. And you too yoyo.
11-17-2008, 09:31 PM
Maddie, I too will be sending you vibes of strength and support - :hug:
11-17-2008, 09:46 PM
It has been 18+ years since I quit my 2-packs-a-day (!!!) habit. I went through Smoke-Enders(-Stoppers? I forget.), and there was several things that stuck in my mind. One was wearing a rubberband around my wrist - negative reinforcement - every time I had an urge, I snapped (ow!!):yikes: my wrist - sometimes it took several times before the urge subsided. The other is if your habit is associated with certain actions (lighting up when driving, after a meal, 1st thing with your morning coffee) - change the actions. That is, change your route while driving - your focus on the different/unfamiliar roads keeps your mind off the habit. Or, right after the meal, get up and brush your teeth/leave the room - something you wouldn't normally do. Drink your coffee with your other hand (the one that held the cigarette) - er - hold the cup with your other hand:coffee2:. Just having to focus on not spilling the coffee/tea on yourself :fr:will keep you busy! ;)
And, yes, I can appreciate just how DIFFICULT this time will be - my darling husband is in the process of quitting as we speak - and does NOT want my suggestions :devil: He has been a wee bit, hmmmm, shall we say, cranky:tantrum:? But, Lord willing, this too shall pass. Keep us in mind when you need to vent!:hug:
11-17-2008, 11:05 PM
Good luck. It will be 11 years in March of 2009 that I quit. I too quit cold turkey. What I found to be the best deterrent from lighting up was to take an old dirty ashtray and sniff it....oh, and a lot of gum. I wish I could tell you that your habits will quickly go away, and by habits I mean the habit of having a cigarette after a meal, or a cigarette when you drink coffee, or a cigarette when you are stressed. You will find yourself reaching for something that is no longer there. But then I had Lasik and I still find myself a year later pushing up glasses that are not there. Good luck and share each day's achievement with anyone who will listen, because it is hard to then let them all down as well as yourself. Hey, maybe I need to listen to myself about my eating!!!!
11-17-2008, 11:26 PM
I quit 24 years ago. It only took 3 hospitalizations for asthma for me to give up my 3 pack a day habit.
Smoking is a form of suicide, by a teeny tiny gun. One day I realized that I really did want to be able to live and breathe, so when I finished that last pack, I just didn't buy any more.
It wasn't easy, but I can honestly say it has been worth every moment. The only side effect I still have is that I sip water all day long - makes drinking my 8 glasses really easy, but I am so totally orally fixated.
Good luck, sweetie. If I can do it, anybody can.
11-17-2008, 11:35 PM
Wow you guys are amazing. Truely I mean that. I keeping all of your words and I'm going to read them when I'm struggeling. I'm still scared but your stories are inspirational.
I just had my last cigarette. This.Is.It.
I'll let you guys know how I'm getting.
Thank you, again:hug:
11-18-2008, 08:12 AM
Maddie, you continue to astound and amaze me. I am just so impressed. You are really going to get your life on track this way. Each day and moment is a small victory. Kudos.
Consider the patch, gum or even zyban if it helps.
11-18-2008, 06:07 PM
I quit in April 2007. I had smoked for 9 years at that point. I stocked up on gum, broccoli, cauliflower and celery - crunchy things that helped A LOT when I was tweaking out! I also began drinking a lot of water as well.
Good luck - you can do it! It's hard the first week or so but then it does get easier. I don't even want one anymore and haven't since last Christmas. It just seems like one day the urge disappeared completely!
11-18-2008, 06:35 PM
Wishing you the BEST and tons of good mojo to you! Isn't drinking alot of water also suggested, does that help rid the body of nicotine?
I was able to quit 26 years ago, but I won't suggest you do what made me quit! (becoming pregnant)
What a lot of great suggestions the other chicks have given...like drinking your coffee with the 'smoking' hand...very imaginative and sound extremely helpful!
When you are clean you will be SO happy at how you can take a d-e-e-p breathe and how good it feels; and how many LESS colds you will get. And think of the $$$ not wasted! good luck to you! :hug:
Holly, A Reformed Smoker (we're the worst, aren't we :D)
11-18-2008, 07:14 PM
I'm going to be really honest with you guys because I feel like I need to be, I feel I've let you all down, and I'm sorry. I smoked today. I'm so ashamed of the fact that I did. I couldn't even make it a day. I felt like crap. It was the worst feeling. My head was foggy. I was miserable and a b**ch. I don't know if I can do it cold turkey. It was so hard. And stressful. I noticed straight away that all I wanted to do was reach for a muffin or some chocolate, I needed something to fill the void. I'm so ashamed.:(
No I know I CAN do this I just don't know if I can do it cold turkey. Do you think thats the only way to do it? I had another idea of cutting back. So I normally smoke 20 a day. I smoked 5 today. I have to see that as an achievement, even tho I'm ashamed of it. Maybe if I do 5 for a week, then 3, then 2, then 1. Then soon I should be able to do 1 every other day and then once a week. Then gone all together.
Do you think I'm clutching at straws? Is it a bad idea, I just couldn't handle nothing at all.
I'm sorry guys you've been great and I f**cked up.
11-18-2008, 07:41 PM
Well, there are nictotine patches you could try. These take away the craving, but you'll still be breaking the habit of sucking on a ciggie. And they come with instructions for lowering the usage.
If you go the gradual route, I warn you, it is all too easy to decide that 1 is OK, and another 1 won't really matter. And then along comes a party and buying a pack is really easy. So don't think in terms of getting down to 1 a day and then every other day and then every week. That will just keep you hooked. Cut down, yes. And then quit completely after the 1 on one day.
I see young people smoking, and I think how sad it is, because they have no idea how hard quitting can be. I know I never gave it a thought.
Good luck--keep trying--you can get past it.
11-18-2008, 08:15 PM
Hey you know what ... we aren't going to abandon you because of this. This is an addiction and your body is fighting your brain here. It's ok. :)
I do agree with Jay that by allowing yourself 1 or 2 or 3, it's easy to say "one more is ok".
I'd just keep on keeping on. You are smoking less than you were and that's better than nothing, but keep aiming high. You can do it.
And we'll keep encouraging you!!!!
11-18-2008, 09:01 PM
Hey girlie, stop beating yourself up! quitting cold turkey is HARD. I think by cutting back you're totally in the right direction. We're here for you :hug:
11-18-2008, 10:04 PM
Oh Maddie, Maddie, Maddie! Poor baby! You didn't let us down! The only person you let down is you. I'm dying on day 4 here and realizing that the quitting smoking is so amazingly harder than quitting brownies! And we're trying to stay off of both! Yesterday I was honestly scared to drive to work because my head was so foggy and disoriented I thought for sure I'd either get in an accident or get pulled over because the cops would think I was drunk! Please don't let a little set back turn you into a 20 year smoker! Please!
Don't want to be the Grim Reaper here but it's never going to get any easier - only harder with every butt you light. If I were going to be totally honest, I'd be admitting that I'm jealous of you for giving in - that's how insidious the habit gets! Please hang in there with me - we've been dumping pounds, we can dump nicotine too!!!!
OK, didn't mean to sound quite so desperate and put pressure on you :o Just wanted to let you know you aren't alone in this battle either :hug:
11-18-2008, 10:10 PM
I'm proud of both of you! (Ok, so I don't really *know* either of you ... so that sounds a little funny, but you know what I mean.)
I grew up the only non-smoker in a family of smokers. My mom, dad, and brother all smoked. My dad died of lung cancer 5 years ago, after finally quitting about 3 years before. I spent my whole life watching them struggle with quitting, smoking less, everything. I have seen how hard it is for them.
So you guys deserve kudos. And don't give up!!!
11-18-2008, 11:01 PM
You didn't let me down - you just didn't succeed this time. You need to keep practicing quitting until you get it right.
You don't think any of us got it right the first time, do you?
11-19-2008, 09:11 AM
Congrats on your decision to quit smoking. YOU CAN DO IT!
Two of my friends, who were quite "active" smokers, quit a while ago. One has kept it up for almost 2 years and the other one (who tried to quit many times in the past) quit this February (and is still smoke-free). I am so proud of them. For both, the ciggy was something of a ritual - like have a coffee, light up, etc.
Both went cold turkey.
Myself, I quit smoking some 20 years ago but I was never too addicted in the first place so it was very easy for me.
11-19-2008, 01:03 PM
Today is another day. Just keep trying. My DH still hasn't quit despite his promises and I see just how addicted he is. I often wonder how I did it successfully and he couldn't. I can't figure it out except that I just really WANTED to be done with it once and for all.
11-19-2008, 01:11 PM
I quit 3 years ago this August. Like VermontMom, I quit because I got pregnant but it was still really hard. I had lots of gum around and anything that could keep my mind off from cigarettes.
Cutting back is a great way to quit! Dont beat yourself up too much. Good luck, you can do it!! :)
11-19-2008, 02:32 PM
You didn't let anyone down.
I am a non smoker now for 6 months or so after smoking for almost 22 years. I tried quite a few times before finally being successful. Here are some tips that helped me.
It does get easier with each attempt because you are learning how to deal with the withdrawals.
Once you quit it takes 72 hours for the nicotine to fully leave your body. After that the major withdrawal symptoms will subside at around 2 weeks.
The foggy feeling you had is very common and I also had it. I found drinking lots of water and juice helped alot.
Cutting down basically just keeps your body in withdrawal for longer.
Set a quit date and stick to it. Make a list of why you want to be smoke free and the benefits of not smoking.
Change your daily habits....if you have a coffee and cig while on the computer in the morning then jump on the computer at a different time of day and have your coffee while you clean the kitchen or fold laundry etc. The basic idea is to change your smoking habits.
You can do this and if you want I can give you the link to a site that really helped me quit smoking and also my sister and a few friends.
Good luck and you can do it!
11-19-2008, 06:29 PM
You can do it! It took me several attempts to finally get it right. You have to find what is going to work for you. Asking around is probably the smartest thing to do. You'll get it eventually. Just keep on trying!
Just think... your giving your hard earned money to a bunch of jerks so they can live high on the hog while you slowly kill yourself!
Love your life!
You can do this!
11-20-2008, 12:04 AM
I quit for the second time 24 years ago. The first "quit" lasted six months. We had a big snowstorm, I managed to get out to the store on day three and it was all over for another two years.
A couple of things helped.
1) Find something to do with your hands. (Sometimes I play with tape, I fiddle with things, I have desk toys. All of those are leftover from my quitting smoking days.
2) Anticipate the hardest moments. When did you typically smoke? I always met a friend right after work and we shared a cigarette...we smoked the same brand. She never smoked another cigarette in front of me. If you can substitute something it helps.
3) I didn't do this, but some programs suggest you put a rubber band around your wrist and pull on it every time you want to reach for a cigarette. Makes the association very concious. The other thing folks I know have done is to wrap their cigarette packages in paper and rubber bands. (Which makes it harder to get at,) Personally cold turkey worked best for me, but lots of folks find a tapering to minimize withdrawal easier.
Good luck...you can do this!
11-20-2008, 04:09 PM
I quit a 2 pack a day habit in 1997 - after getting a tooth pulled. After 3 days cold turkey I decided if I could do 3 days maybe I shouldn't start again. It CAN be done. We are all rooting for you!!
I keep my mouth busy with sugar free Altoids smalls. My exercise habit started pretty much right after I quit - it's a fabulous way to break an unhealthy habit with a healthy one. When I craved a cigarette I went for a walk. Let's just say I did a LOT of walking. :D