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Old 06-16-2009, 12:11 PM   #1
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Default Have you accepted it yet?

Yesterday as I was coming home from my 5k run, I started thinking about pizza. Pizza is my arch nemesis. The bane of my existence. I would marry pizza if it were legal. For a while, I had to give up pizza because I couldn't limit myself to just one or two slices. We did end up having it for dinner yesterday, but I only had two slices. You know, what a normal serving is.

It just got me thinking - have I accepted yet that I can't eat junk for the rest of my life? Have I accepted that exercise HAS to be a part of my normal routine in order for to lose/maintain weight? Have I accepted that - when I do reach goal - that I can't go back to eating ice cream, drinking Dr Pepper by the liter, eating out all weekend? I think a part of me has not. A part of me goes "Oooh - maintenance! I can eat crap and as long as I exercise, I won't gain!"

Halfway to my goal, I still feel like I struggle so much with wanting to eat junk and making better choices. I still have at least one day a week where I want to throw in the towel, eat pizza until I'm stuffed, and forget all about weight loss. It's getting easier with time, but I wonder if I will always feel this way. I wonder if I will always struggle.

Why is there still so much satisfaction and comfort and good feelings from food? Are we wired differently?
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:43 PM   #2
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Yeah, as a matter of fact, we are wired differently. Repetitive behaviors lay down neural pathways in the brain. That's why athletes envision a race or swim or ball game for hours at a time, anticipating how they will react. That's why the psychological addiction to cigarettes is so darn tough to kick...the nicotine is gone from the body within 3 days, but the agony of quitting goes on for months. We've done the same thing, only we envision food.
I have the same feeling about ice cream that you have about pizza. Chocolate-peanut butter Haagen das is the finest thing ever created by mankind, and whoever came up with it deserves a Nobel Prize. Alas, it's now on my banned food list because I just cannot fight my hardwiring with small amounts. It's all or nothing for me.
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:53 PM   #3
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I've been fighting this issue for years. Being too restrictive, then binging. I had to take the time to tackle the emotional issues by going to an eating disorder site (something-fishy.com).

Even with that, in January I had to go gluten-free for health reasons. I had a temper tantrum for a few months, eating tons of gluten-free sugary sweets (probably made payroll for Haagen Dazs a few weeks there.) I'm stuffing down all this sugar, which is incredibly bad and stupid idea, being diabetic.

So I'm gluten-free but feeling like total crap. Decide to check my sugar - WHOA!!! 3 times normal. I didn't come to a crossroads, my crossroads came to me. Was I gonna continue to eat myself to death? Were there any options left? One - get my act together and do what I have to do. I started taking care of myself because I had no other feasible choice.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:01 PM   #4
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Peep Smith, you bring up a good point. My husband can put pizza in the fridge, and that's the last he'll think about it. I, on the other hand, hear it calling to me for the rest of the night.

I too feel like sometimes I want to throw a temper tantrum and say "WHY CAN'T I HAVE THE FRIED CHICKEN?!" Why, why, why do I have to exercise in order to see the scale budge? Do I really have to eat this way for the rest of my life?!

And then I wonder why I'm even complaining. I make good food for dinner. I'm not exactly eating rabbit food here. I allow myself to eat out sometimes on the weekend. The problem isn't so much what I'm eating, it's how much I'm eating. I think I'm missing the "stop! you're full!" filter in my brain.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:05 PM   #5
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What is the nicest non-life threatening food you can imagine eating?

The other night I had toasted rye bread with a one teaspoon of butter. I cut one ounce of cheese, a tomato and onion. I put it all under the broiler for 5 minutes. Then I took it out and sprinkled basil on it.

Every time I think about how good it tasted, I am developing a "new" neural pathway for my brain.

I also found an absolutely awesome fruit salad recipe. A 1/2 cup of that with a dollop of low fat vanilla yogurt is heaven on earth.

Or how about a cool smoothie on a hot day: made with 1 cup frozen berries, 1/2 cup of yogurt, ice cubes, and 1/4 cup friut juice. Oh migoodness. It's wonderful.

Find food you will love more


'cause that other junk will kill you. Literally.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:27 PM   #6
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alana--i get your point. I realized this earlier this year when I was doing much better with my weight loss. As I ate healthy foods every day, I developed favorite healthy foods and would crave those. I'd never even think about french fries.
But god, I put a french fry in my mouth and it is OVER.

As for OP, I've got to say that no, probably not, my body has not quite adjusted to the idea of being healthy, forever. I'm 19, so hopefully forever will be a very very long time, and the idea is, indeed, daunting.
But what's more daunting is the idea of spending the rest of my life overweight and miserable. I know that if I'm struggling with my weight now, I have to fix it because otherwise I'll be struggling with the same weight issues when I'm 40 and 60 and 80, if i make it that far. I know I've got to figure this out now.
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Old 06-16-2009, 02:27 PM   #7
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I've been in maintenance mode for 18 months. I've definitely gone through those periods where I feel: I'm TIRED of having to be conscientious all of the time, I just want to eat and not have to THINK about it any more ... Why can't I just eat cheesecake and bagels and pizza like everyone else !!! But then I look at how far I've come, and how so much better I feel now, and realize that the new lifestyle is well worth the self-constraint.

And, in reality, I CAN have pizza and bagels and cheesecake. Just not in large quantities, and not very often. If I eat more calories here, then I have to balance out there by eating less or burning more. I still have the tendency to go overboard and then have to work hard to compensate, but I'm getting better at finding the moderate ground. I'm still working on it.

And the longer I'm in maintenance, the easier it gets in many ways. Maybe I am re-wiring my brain, or maybe it's just finally establishing firm new habits. But, it's gotten easier over time, if that's any consolation.
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Old 06-16-2009, 02:54 PM   #8
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I adore the new healthy foods I've discovered, and I absolutely love challenging my body with exercise everyday, but there is always that twinge of a craving for fast food. It scares the **** out of me that I'll never be able to sit in front of the TV with a bag of chips and just eat with abandon. I'll never be able to get my old favorite meal (2 cheeseburgers and a large fry from Burger King) anymore. I think we all know that being healthy and slender is a huge reward in itself, I just hope it really does get easier with time.
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Old 06-16-2009, 03:05 PM   #9
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MBN - that gives me a lot of hope. It just seems like I still have days where I want to stuff my face with everything and I feel no different in how I think about food than when I was 35 lbs heavier. Some days it just feels like I'm fighting a losing battle, ya know?

And you are right - I love calorie counting because I don't have to say "that's off limits," but it does teach me a lot about proper portion control, how to balance eating well 90% of the time, and how to incorporate daily exercise so that it becomes a habit and I feel weird or off when I don't exercise.
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Old 06-16-2009, 03:43 PM   #10
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Ahh yes the thrill of coming home from work and going on a binge...especially of my favorite corn dogs... yum! Or having one little cookie, because it's only one, too often. If I lose focus, I go back into old ways, but I try to weigh myself every two weeks or so to notice variations of weight, that way I can catch it early and get back to it.

I never ever weighed myself. I knew what I was doing was destructive, but I didn't want to admit.
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Old 06-16-2009, 04:20 PM   #11
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I think it was one of rockinrobin's posts that really drove it home - this really is "forever" and I can never not be mindful of what's going in my mouth ever again. That being said ... calorie counting and journaling have helped tremendously in learning portion control and what was actually satisfying to eat. I have a whole list of foods that require extra vigilance to eat sensibly, but I truly believe that I am laying the foundation for a healthy life.
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Old 06-16-2009, 04:42 PM   #12
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As far as not eating junk food, (which for me is anything sugary, or anything that comes from a drive-thru) Yes, I have accepted that I cannot eat that stuff. I have tried eating it in moderation before and that does nothing to help my fixation. If anything, it only makes it worse because then I'm focused on WHEN I can have it and HOW MUCH I can have. Now I can't have it, so there's no debate, no hemming and hawing about whether I should or shouldn't. I just dismiss it out of hand.

But, just because I accept it doesn't mean I like it, or that I crave it any less. At least not at this point. Maybe it will get easier. The fact is that stuff was killing me, and I refuse to put it in my body anymore.
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Old 06-16-2009, 04:47 PM   #13
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I have accepted the fact that exercise will have to be part of my life - I have no problem with that. I have accepted the fact that I can no longer eat junk food - but there are days when it's hard to stick to that decision. I, for one, have never had a problem eating junk food. I never felt naseous, bloated, etc. My body loves junk food. It just can't have it. I have learned to eat pizza in small doses - one or two slices max (depending on the size of the slice), not half of the pizza at a sitting.
And even though I love my clean eating, sometimes I am just dying for french fries or for a burger.
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Old 06-16-2009, 04:48 PM   #14
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I accepted that it was forever before I even started this venture *this time*. I did that in the months leading up to the "start" of my journey. I made peace with it. The thing is, I no longer wanted to BE a person who didn't care what she ate. I had had enough "of that food" for way too long. It wasn't doing me any good. Besides, all "that food" never, ever made me happy. Not even close. Sure it tasted good - but then what? It was over so quickly, half the times I was sick to my stomach, had a headache, was lethargic and sleepy from it. And that was just within an hour or so. The long term ramifications were worse then that. My life sucked back then. I apologize for the harsh words, but that's just how strongly I feel about it. My life is waaay better and easier now. Full of much more joy and less worries. I'm a social butterfly, a clothes horse, full of confidence, energy, stamina. Oh I could go on and on. Yes, I've accepted it.

Luckily, I fell in love with the foods that I now eat - I made it a top priority to FIND those foods. I'm a bigger and better cook then I ever was and I'm a bigger and better foodie now then prior. The foods I eat now gives me pleasure while I'm eating them, and this is the big difference - and long after I'm done chewing. I no longer settle for foods that just taste good - they've got to work double duty for me. Yes, I've accepted it.

Now of course, every now and then I do get those "why the heck can't I have this and that like every one else? Why do I have to plan so dilligently?" feelings. But it fades pretty quickly as I remember my "former life" when I didn't care what I ate, had whatever I wanted - was miserable - and I never, ever want to go back there. Never. Yes. I've accepted it.

I do eat "those foods" every now and then now that I'm in maintenance by the way. And I enjoy them and move on. They are a once in a while thing. Just like a vacation. Vacations are great - but if we took one all the time, well that would be out of the question. Too high a price to pay. All that time off from work, and family and other obligations. Too much money. I view "those foods" in the same way - they're fine every now and then. Yes, I've accepted it.

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Old 06-16-2009, 05:20 PM   #15
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Robin - I just need to say thank you again for your very thoughtful posts. They make me think about why I am really doing this.
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