100 lb. Club - Help, I've fallen and I can't get up.




thinpossible
05-23-2009, 09:41 AM
I've have not been doing well. It seems like I just can't stay on plan, and since I'm the only one responsible for what goes in my mouth, I guess I have to say I don't, or won't stay on plan. I want to lose the weight. I want to look better and feel better. I don't want to have health problems, but if I'm confronted with a craving all that goes out the window. I don't have any junk at home, so I have to go get the stuff.

I feel like an absolute idiot for admitting that an ice cream cone or a piece of cake takes precedence over a better life, but the cake is right there, the better life is pounds away. Wow, I just reread that last sentence. Am I really that kind of person? So immature with so little impulse control? I guess I am, because that's how I got to 215lbs.

I guess my commitment just isn't that strong. So how do I strengthen it? How do I make a rock solid commitment? What is it? What does it look like, and how do I get there? How do I put my commitment above what I want at the moment? How do I achieve the "no matter what" level of commitment? That's the level I really want.


chickiegirl
05-23-2009, 10:04 AM
Thinpossible I empathize with you. It can be so frustrating to slip more than once in a short period of time. But don't let it discourage you. Don't let the food take you down.

You know what you want (otherwise you would have written what you did). You know how to get there (because I've read enough of your other posts to know you are actively engaged in this process). Now you just have to push past this.

To be honest, I did not start with that "no matter what" mentality. I just forced myself to do what I supposed to be doing and my commitment really started to grow from my success.

If you have to drive to get the food, there must be a point of second guessing on that trip. Even if you go out the door, turn back at the second guessing moment.

Don't give up!! :hug:

willow68
05-23-2009, 10:45 AM
i take it one day at a time.

the general commitment is there/here (!), and it grew with getting more active. i just don't crave sweets and fat as much anymore as i used to.
i guess for me that is the key.

don't ever DRIVE if you're craving anything, if it all then WALK to wherever you need to get your fix. :)


Rosinante
05-23-2009, 10:56 AM
Yea, I don't think most of us get to the pitch of commitment you hope for, it's just a case of plodding. I've been plodding for 117 days now and yes, it has become second nature. Mostly. I don't feel splendidly committed, it really has just become the way I eat. Mostly.
There are still days when a huge wave of 'I want that' sweeps over me: only today I got a whiff of what smelled like deep-fried, battered potato slices, and Oh, I wanted a bucketful of them; but I kept on walking home with my healthy veg shopping.
Feeling committed doesn't come into it (for me). It's an emotionless plod. That plus the highs of something fitting that didn't.

Musicgal
05-23-2009, 10:57 AM
Hi, thinpossible, I want to thank you so much for posting because you have accurately put into words my problem as well and the problem of so many others. Your title caught my attention as I hope it will catch the attention of someone with the answer! However, I will try to help you as best I can. First of all, it does not make you immature or an idiot when you reach for food on impulse. What it does make you (and me and many of us) is"reaching" for something. We want something else but the food is there, never to judge us or deny us and yes, we can have it, right then and there. Chickiegirl offered good advice in that there must be a moment when you can turn back. Before you take a bite or maybe even walk out the door to buy something, you take a deep breath, count to 10, even say a prayer or something or write down what you are about to do...you need a moment to pause and ask yourself if you really want this or something else. In most cases, for me, it is the feeling of calm and zoning out that I want (and so easily get with icecream, cakes (albeit lower fat but still not what I should be eating), so I take a few minutes to do that without food and then I do the chores or work or whatever I really need to do. Thinpossible, you probably heard this all before but I hope maybe I can help a little...the problem with me is following my own advice. Also, having somebody to hold you accountable is a good idea. What most people that I know have lost weight and kept if off say is that something usually clicks with them and they get themselves into a healthy lifestyle and it becomes habit...it's a journey to get to that point, though. Have a very nice holiday and I will check this thread again for more advice. Thanks, again for a very honest post and a very good question.

Windchime
05-23-2009, 11:31 AM
thinpossible, I can sympathize. Like Ailidh, I don't feel some Rocky-esque level of committment; I just keep trying to do the right thing day after day. I'm not nearly as consistantly on plan as she, and my rate of weight loss shows it. But we all have to do this our own way.

For me, committment and motivation doesn't come first. Action comes first, and then when I start to see results, the committment to keep going starts to kick in. I know that's not terribly helpful to you right now, but can you start by just making small changes? Sometimes all it takes is a TINY success to light the fire. Maybe focus on non-scale victories for now; setting an exercise and water-drinking goal, for instance.

Is it possible that there is something you are eating that is making it so difficult for you to start? From what you're describing, it sounds like you may be eating a trigger food of some kind that is causing you to have a physiological inability to control your eating. Carbs, maybe? I don't have the carb issue (I don't think), but so many people have reported it here that I believe it to be real.

Maybe others will come up with concrete suggestions, but I just wanted to offer my moral support to you. Hang in there. You will figure this out!

jab91864
05-23-2009, 11:57 AM
Have you tried having substitutes in the house ?

Sugar free or low fat treats to use in place of your original craving. Sugar free popsicles or other single serving "diet" frozen treats might take care of the ice cream craving.

Maybe make a batch of diabetic or high fiber low fat muffins and have one in place of cake.

It's hard, I know because I have fallen my entire adult life and then some. I've never been thin and seems like I've spent my entire life trying to get to some place I've never been. Just take it one day at a time and keep trying, don't let the "shame" of the moment get you down.

If you can walk to where you have to go get your treat that is a good suggestion. Also guzzle a big glass of water before your treat.

Maybe you need to adjust your plan or your path to your goal and find a way that is a little easier to handle so you don't feel so deprived. A lot of ppl are successful if they have one day a week as a day off it helps to keep them on the straight and narrow the other 6 days a week. Something to look forward to.

Don't give up, just do it one step at a time.

Best of luck

CLCSC145
05-23-2009, 01:54 PM
Think about what you are feeling at that moment aside from the craving. Are you lonely or bored and the first thing you thought of was to fill the need for comfort or something to do ice cream?

If so, consider that at that moment you aren't craving the ice cream so much as you are craving the feelings that eating ice cream brings you mentally, emotionally and physically. Sure the taste is great, but if the need/desire to eat it is enough to knowingly keep you from the life you want and sabotage your efforts, it's NOT about the ice cream.

You need to identify the emotions that trigger your cravings and work on finding new outlets for those other than food just as much as you are working on your eating and exercise plan. It should be a huge part of your plan if you are a compulsive eater. Otherwise, you are kidding yourself that you can keep the weight off long term - it becomes like building a house on unstable ground. No matter how much you focus on the house, eventually it will fall if you don't address what is going on beneath the surface.

The flip side to all of this is planning to eat the things you love like ice cream and cake etc. If you consciously make room for those foods in your week, while making sure they don't derail you, then that's terrific. For example, I love McDonalds vanilla cones. They have 150 calories and satisfy my love of ice cream. I plan those into my food every once in a while. It's not an impulsive trip and there is no guilt involved.

Now I say all of this, fully aware that I have have been a slave to my cravings for as long as I can remember. But I'm learning to pause and really think about my feelings in the moment I am dying for something that I will regret later. At first, I couldn't even put a label on those feelings, so entwined with food they were. But I'm slowly learning. Anger, feeling alone, wishing I had something fun to do, wanting to put off a task (avoidance), frustration, even celebratory feelings all trigger my desire to eat. By pointing it out to myself, it does take some of the wind out of the craving's sails.

Science Lesson!

So here's the some of the science behind what I wrote above. Your brain is made up of different levels of functioning: Reptilian, Limbic, and Neocortex (it's worth doing some Googling on these to understand how they work! Fascinating!). In a nutshell, your Reptilian and Limbic levels are primitive and control all of the "autopilot" functions: breathing and heart beat (Reptilian) and associations of good and bad experiences and unconscious decisions (Limbic). Your Neocortex controls abstract thinking, consciousness, imagination, and language.

Your Limbic brain knows that eating foods you crave is the quickest and easiest route to feeling good for you (not for everyone, which could explain why not everyone is so ruled by food). That's all it's concerned about - you experience an emotion and your Limbic brain's automatic response is to make you feel good, something it associates with ice cream or cake, so the craving is triggered.

So what you are trying to do during this weight loss journey is to override your VERY POWERFUL lower brain functions. To do that, you need to build new associations to good feelings that don't involve junk food. Those new associations are built by repeatedly using your higher brain functions (Neocortex) to consciously reason out the situation, identify your true emotions, and make a conscious decision to meet that need in a more productive way. You do this enough, and you create a new automatic response in the Limbic brain. That's where the concept of "do something consciously for 3 weeks and it becomes a habit" comes from.

Unfortunately, the deeper the unwanted associations are ingrained, the longer it takes to undo them and build new associations - often significantly longer than three weeks. The good news is, it can be done!! But it's very hard work and takes a lot of personal examination and conscious decision making. The reason it's so hard is that our brains are highly attached to those automatic, unconscious associations. They take almost no effort at all. Using the Neocortex to override the unconscious decisions takes a lot of effort and is exhausting, sometimes physically so and definitely mentally. But it gives us the best chance of getting out of the cycle we're in and living healthier lives.

rockinrobin
05-23-2009, 02:39 PM
How do I achieve the "no matter what" level of commitment? That's the level I really want.

If that is the level that you want, then you must go out there and TAKE it. Reel it in. Because it will never, ever fall into your lap. It is for you to go and TAKE.

You have to want to lose the weight so badly, that you are willing to pass up on "those foods". Your desire to be thin must outweigh the desire for the food. You must make the decision, once and for all that you are going to "do this". Then you must be WILLING to do "whatever it takes to get you there."

For me, I don't know about others, but for me, successful, steady, consistent, permanent weight loss could not occur until the above things happened.

There is the "Fake it till you make it mentality", which some people find successful. Perhaps you can promise yourself that you will be perfectly on plan - no matter what - for "just one day" and take it and build it from there.

Delve deep. Real deep. Decide what it is you really want from life. Shorterm gratification or longterm satisfaction. Then make a plan - and go out there and get it. It's yours for the taking. :hug:

Glory87
05-23-2009, 02:59 PM
I know it sounds backwards - but not eating those foods eliminated my cravings for those foods. Due to other goals, I basically said "I'm not eating any of those foods anymore" I didnt' have the deliberate intention to eliminate sugar/white carbs, it was a byproduct of what else I was doing.

My cravings vanished, it was a little miracle for me.

I know it isn't for everyone, but I find it much easier to just say "I don't eat that" and put foods on a "no" list. That doesn't mean they have to be "no foods" forever (although I still have a few). It just simplified the equation for me, I didn't have to worry about special cases or "what if, maybes" or "how can I fit this into my plan for the day" I just didn't eat it. Black and white is simple!

Not eating those foods, freed me of most of the desire to eat those foods.

rockinrobin
05-23-2009, 03:09 PM
I'm with Glory. Definite NO's are a definite MUST for me. Very, VERY strict with it the year I was losing. It took away that "maybe just one bite, should I, shouldn't I?" equation. That was it. There were no ifs and or buts. IT WAS OUT OF THE QUESTION. It wasn't restrictive at all to me - just the opposite - it was freeing. I hated that powerless feeling that certain foods had over me. Once I took away the decision making process, it's like a huge weight was lifted from me.

And miraculously so, upon eliminating the foods that I craved the most, the cravings decreased IMMENSELY. They no longer held power over me. And the longer I went without them, the less and less I wanted them. I resisted that "method" (the elimination of the foods that I overate)for soooo long , but after being sick and tired enough of being fat, I figured *finally*, that it was worth a shot. I was willing to give it a try. And boy oh boy am I ever glad that I did.

EDITED TO ADD: I just wanted to mention here, that planning "those foods" into my calorie budget wouldn't have worked *for me*. By doing that it just kept my tastes, wants and desires for "those foods" alive. I needed to dry up, eliminate & kill those wants. I needed to "detox" from them so to speak. I knew (hoped) that eventually, waaaay down the road, that I would be able to add a few certain of "those foods" back into my life in small quantities under controlled circumstances.

Okay. That is all. Edit over. :)

Rainbow
05-23-2009, 04:36 PM
I have always been the same when trying to lose weight - except this time. I'm calorie counting - done that before but this time I fight the cravings by not banning myself from chocolate etc. (tried that before but my husband brings those things into the house anyway and eventually I would binge on them so I thought it important to finally try and learn to have just 1 piece of chocolate and to ignore the overwhelming urge to have more) but working it into my calories some days. If I crave it at other times I remind myself it will still be there the next day or the next day or the next day and maybe I can have it then. Yes I am committed and motivated and that helps a lot but I'm not committed to thinking I want to be healthy more than I want the cake. That doesn't work for me. My motivation comes from previously being over 300lb and crying looking at photos of myself or in the mirror because I look so bad, and deciding I just can't live like that anymore and there's no point crying in the mirror feeling sorry for myself and not doing anything about it. Being healthier would never motivate me - other than my weight I've always been fairly healthy and I just rebel against anyone who says i need to lose weight to be healthy and then eat more. You need to find motivation which works for you and helps keep you on plan. I remind myself every day why I'm doing this - that I can't go back to being 300+lb - if I don't I would quickly go off my plan.

You can do this. Find what works for you.

Cinnamon
05-23-2009, 08:50 PM
I don't have all the wise and wonderful words that everyone else has...BUT

can I just say....I so understand.

hang in there. you CAN do this.

thinpossible
05-23-2009, 11:28 PM
Thanks for your help and words of wisdom everyone. It's nice to know that I may not have to have a giant dose of commitment to make it. At least I keep trying.

If that is the level that you want, then you must go out there and TAKE it. Reel it in. Because it will never, ever fall into your lap. It is for you to go and TAKE.

You have to want to lose the weight so badly, that you are willing to pass up on "those foods". Your desire to be thin must outweigh the desire for the food. You must make the decision, once and for all that you are going to "do this". Then you must be WILLING to do "whatever it takes to get you there." I guess I'm not sure HOW to "take it." What I described in my original post is that when push comes to shove my desire for the food is stronger than my desire to be thin, so I'm not sure what to do about that.


I know it sounds backwards - but not eating those foods eliminated my cravings for those foods. Due to other goals, I basically said "I'm not eating any of those foods anymore" I didnt' have the deliberate intention to eliminate sugar/white carbs, it was a byproduct of what else I was doing.

My cravings vanished, it was a little miracle for me. I definitely want to give those foods up. I don't need them, and I want to eliminate them. I have sworn them many times, but I don't seem to be able to stick to it.

cfmama
05-23-2009, 11:39 PM
I'm in the HAVE TO ELIMINATE them camp. I NOW am able to have the odd and I do mean odd cupcake (like at my mothers day tea) or something and it's okay. Not great but okay. I will fight the craving for a day or two after and it sucks. Again. But not as bad as the first three weeks I spent detoxing from all the sugary crap.

I built on my small successes. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that I could actually lose weight. Never. I just took it one day at a time. One day perfectly on plan led to two days and so on. I just did it. Because I did. And now it's not an option to NOT do it. It becomes second nature to not indulge every time you want to.

I wish you much luck hon. I know it's hard... boy do I know it.

KitgetsFit
05-24-2009, 12:08 AM
First of all, I love your username: thinpossible. That's so clever and funny. :)

Now, to be honest, I didn't read all of the replies because there were a lot. So I hope I'm not repeating anyone. But... I relate to your struggle with giving in to just this one cookie or one piece of pizza when it's in the here and now, and the ultimate goal of weight loss is pounds away... days away... weeks away... months away...

I crave the instant gratification too. So I try to find other instant pick-me-ups instead of food. Preferably healthy ones. There are so many things in life that we have to slowly work towards. It's frustrating. But whenever you reach a long-term goal, it's so worth it.

Try to figure out what makes you happy. Maybe make a list of things that make you instantly happy and things that are more abstract or long-term happy. I.e. instant happy would be playing with your dog or talking to a friend or going shopping. Long-term happy would be reaching your goal weight or saving up enough money to go on vacation, etc.

Once you figure out enough things that make you instantly happy, hopefully you can substitute those things in place of food.

Hope that helps. :)

rockinrobin
05-24-2009, 12:16 AM
Thanks for your help and words of wisdom everyone. It's nice to know that I may not have to have a giant dose of commitment to make it. At least I keep trying.

Yes, at least you keep trying. Don't ever stop.

I guess I'm not sure HOW to "take it." What I described in my original post is that when push comes to shove my desire for the food is stronger than my desire to be thin, so I'm not sure what to do about that.

Work on it. Think about it. Really, really think about. Decide what direction you want your life to take. Where you want to be a year from now. 2 years and further. Start journaling. Get your thoughts on paper. Write down your goals and dreams. Remember, if you can dream it, you can achieve it.

Now, I have a question for you. If you were given the choice to be fit, thin and trim for life or to remain overweight, which option would you take? I'm betting you would take the first option - you would choose to be fit, thin and trim for lfe. If you did say that yes, you would choose that, then I would say to you - CHOOSE it. You do have the choice. It IS up to you and the choice is yours for the taking. So choose it.

I definitely want to give those foods up. I don't need them, and I want to eliminate them. I have sworn them many times, but I don't seem to be able to stick to it.

Make a pact with yourself. Maybe even write it on paper. Make a contract. Do whatever it takes. Make a VOW, A PLEDGE, a WHATEVER - take it one day at a time. One hour at a time if need be. And then you keep on building and building. You've got the power to do so. I promise you it's there. Dig deep. Challenge yourself. Make a game of it. Discover who you were meant to be all along.

And don't forget, though you may be eliminating certain foods, you get to ADD in many others. FIND delicious, healthy low calorie alternatives. Get creative. Make a plan. Map out your food schedule in advance, leaving nothing to chance.


The truth is, no one can "talk you into this". This is something you have to want for yourself. I urge you therefore to decide what it is you really, really WANT. :hug:

Farseashore
05-24-2009, 07:17 AM
I guess I'm not sure HOW to "take it." What I described in my original post is that when push comes to shove my desire for the food is stronger than my desire to be thin, so I'm not sure what to do about that.

I definitely want to give those foods up. I don't need them, and I want to eliminate them. I have sworn them many times, but I don't seem to be able to stick to it.

This is where that Nike slogan "just do it" comes in. I haven't eliminated foods, but I use this with exercise. I don't feel like taking a walk right now? I put on my sneakers and go. No arguing with myself. I just do it.

It's not a feeling ("I want to give those foods up") it's an action. That's how you start to "take it". You don't eat something or not eat something based on whether you want to or not. Wanting is irrelevant.

I hope you find what works for you.

rockinrobin
05-24-2009, 08:06 AM
You don't eat something or not eat something based on whether you want to or not. Wanting is irrelevant.


This was a HUGE, GROUND BREAKING realization for me. I finally realized that I didn't have to have something just because I wanted it. We're not spoiled children after all. Nothing terrible would happen to me if I didn't have it. No limbs will fall off, no harm will come to me. JUST THE OPPOSITE IN FACT. You don't have to give into a craving. PERIOD.

Not sure why food is the last hold out of responsibility and maturity. You go shopping for a pair of shoes, you see 6 pairs that you LOVE. You want them ALL. You have to have them. But you can't have them. That would put you way over your monetary budget. You don't come home with 6 pairs. It's not an option to do so. If you were to do so, let's say you charge it on a credit card, well then, you'd have to pay the price further down the road. There is always a price to pay. Most likely a better head will prevail. You'll talk yourself out of it. Because we're responsible adults. We know there are consequences to our actions. We don't have to give into momentary desires. Food is no different. This is your new mantra.

EDITED TO ADD: Farseashore, it's good to "see" you again. You've been missed! You are such as asset to this site as you are very wise and articulate. Hope all is well and that you are back for good. :)