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Is this a lifestyle change or a phase?!

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Old 11-28-2010, 02:34 PM   #1
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Default Is this a lifestyle change or a phase?!

So I've pretty much been on plan (i.e. eating responsibly, regular exercise, keeping track of everything) for the past few months.

Over Thanksgiving I realized I'm now doing it without thinking about it. I ate what I wanted, but where I'd have 4 full plates of Thanksgiving food, and THEN dessert, this year I was perfectly satisfied with 1 plate of my favorite dishes and 1 slice of cheesecake. When I was done, I was done. I didn't have that urge to keep eating even though I was full.

Over-eating or non-hungry eating is now something that I have to actively remember to do, if indeed I wanted to do it. It was the exact opposite before. I used to have to actively think about NOT over eating or eating when I was bored. I had to really buckle down to avoid over eating. I had to really make an effort to get a workout in. At first I felt deprived and a little resentful, then some switch flipped or something. I don't know. Suddenly I have a better relationship with food. Even when I *try* to trigger myself, I have no inclination to binge. I did that out of sheer curiosity, btw, because I hadn't wanted to binge in a long time. It was weird, lol.

It's not that I've suddenly realized THIS is how to lose weight, because honestly, I haven't lost a whole lot. I do feel better about myself, but I don't have any outward changes to substantiate a real change due to the changes I've made in my life.

A part of me is scared this is just a phase and I'll go back to scarfing down bags of Oreos and 4 slices of pizza for dinner. Or at least desperately WANTING to do that.

Have any of you gone through this? Did it last or was it just a phase? Maybe I feel like this because I finally put my foot down in real life, and it impacted my relationship with food? I don't know.
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Old 11-28-2010, 02:50 PM   #2
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Quote:
Did it last or was it just a phase?
I think for some it lasts and for some it is temporary (a phase). It's all what you make it to be. It lasts if you make sure that it lasts.

Quote:
A part of me is scared this is just a phase and I'll go back to scarfing down bags of Oreos and 4 slices of pizza for dinner. Or at least desperately WANTING to do that
Wanting to scarf down all that food and actually doing it are two completely different things.

I want to buy 6 pairs of shoes at times, but I don't. I talk myself out of it. Because the cost is so high. A better head prevails. It's fairly simple to talk myself out of it. I'm not willing to pay the consequences.

The same thing about the food.

Yes, there will be times when you want it, but it will be easier to talk yourself down. At least that has been my experience.
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Old 11-28-2010, 03:02 PM   #3
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Robin, that 6 pairs of shoes analogy is genius. Absolutely genius. I guess I'm just afraid that I'll end up going back to my old ways. I've never gotten to this point before, so I guess I'm just in new territory, LOL.

Thank you for your response.
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Old 11-28-2010, 03:42 PM   #4
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I am fortunate in that I wasn't terribly off this lifestyle to begin with. My new way of eating is really quite on par with my personality and the way I strive to present myself. I'm a hippy at heart, so whole foods fits in quite well. My problem has always been about portion sizes. I only wish I'd known that sooner.

So for me, it's definitely not a phase. My past "health kick phases" have been phases because I made them too hard. Anything I am able to stay committed to for a full year is definitely sustainable in my book. I am not eating the way I HAVE to...I am eating the way I WANT to. Big difference.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:26 PM   #5
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I think it's pretty permanent. As much as I would love to eat a bag of oreos I physically couldn't. I suppose I could work myself up to it over time, but I physically could not put that much food in my body and I couldn't put that much sugar in my body without feeling ill. Binging is even different for me now. I've struggled with binging for a long time and the amount and types of food I binge on now is completely different.

I also would not allow myself to get back to where I was before, I like this new lifestyle too much to ever go back to bags of anything - but I would buy six pairs of shoes
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Old 11-28-2010, 10:00 PM   #6
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I go through various phases within my lifestyle change. Sometimes, I'm perfectly content to stay on plan, and I do so without any conscious effort. I don't crave anything, and I don't even consider deviating from my plan to be an option, I don't want to. Other times, I want to eat eeeverything, I lose my motivation, I feel angry that I can't eat like I used to, but I stick with it because that's just what I do now. Other times I drift between the two extremes. But ultimately, I stick to my plan no matter how I feel about it and no matter what my mindset on that day is. This is my lifestyle, and it's my habit.

Like robin said, wanting to do something and doing it are two different things. Before, eating tremendous amounts of junk was my everyday normal. Now, eating on plan is my everyday normal, it's just habit, whether I want to or not that day. Eating any junk at all or eating over my calorie limit or not counting...even if I want to...that's a deviation from normal. It feels different and weird.

In my new lifestyle, I do have rare indulgences. Indulging in eating whatever I want on the rare planned occasion is part of my plan, in fact. But even though I enjoy it, and do it guilt-free as long as it's planned, it feels "odd." Odd not that it's bad, because it's part of my plan, but odd that it's not my habit to overeat junk. It's different than what I just naturally do now. And that fact pleases me.
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Old 11-29-2010, 11:35 AM   #7
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It is both. It really depends on what the reasons were before that you gained weight, how long you were overweight and how many times you gained and lost weight....how many cycles.

Sometimes we get very deeply stuck in cycles of losses and gains because we never truly attempt to understand the whole process, or develop better coping skills for life's difficulties. Some just need better nutritional guidance, some need therapy, some need to find the right balance in their life and the changes come easier for them.

I spent most of my adulthood (30 years of it) struggling with obesity AND in thinness. The damage has been done and my ways of thinking are very resistant to change at this point. I am doing my last hurrah as far as a diet is concerned, after this, I am done with massive gains and dieting to fix it.

When I lost a great deal of weight before, it did not fix my mindset. I still struggled with food and eating issues. Even now, with all the years behind me and another solid year of dieting....the old tapes still play and I could easily give in to them.

The difference this time is that I take nothing for granted. I don't assume I am cured and won't have the problem ever again, I don't sweat the fears of regaining lost weight, frankly because I am sick of the cycles. I am finding a balance between the two extremes. I accept I must be ever vigilant and ever aware of my food choices, I must continue to monitor my weight and if I gain 5 pounds, it's time to adjust my eating until the 5 pounds are gone. I can live with this as the alternative is obesity and I know how that feels.

So I see it as a phase, because I am currently doing it and what I am doing at this moment will be temporary, until I have lost the rest of the excess weight. I see it as a lifestyle change, because even in the future, at a normal weight, I will have to continue to closely monitor it.
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Old 11-30-2010, 05:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pint Sized Terror View Post
So I've pretty much been on plan (i.e. eating responsibly, regular exercise, keeping track of everything) for the past few months.

Over Thanksgiving I realized I'm now doing it without thinking about it. I ate what I wanted, but where I'd have 4 full plates of Thanksgiving food, and THEN dessert, this year I was perfectly satisfied with 1 plate of my favorite dishes and 1 slice of cheesecake. When I was done, I was done. I didn't have that urge to keep eating even though I was full.

Over-eating or non-hungry eating is now something that I have to actively remember to do, if indeed I wanted to do it. It was the exact opposite before. I used to have to actively think about NOT over eating or eating when I was bored. I had to really buckle down to avoid over eating. I had to really make an effort to get a workout in. At first I felt deprived and a little resentful, then some switch flipped or something. I don't know. Suddenly I have a better relationship with food. Even when I *try* to trigger myself, I have no inclination to binge. I did that out of sheer curiosity, btw, because I hadn't wanted to binge in a long time. It was weird, lol.

It's not that I've suddenly realized THIS is how to lose weight, because honestly, I haven't lost a whole lot. I do feel better about myself, but I don't have any outward changes to substantiate a real change due to the changes I've made in my life.

A part of me is scared this is just a phase and I'll go back to scarfing down bags of Oreos and 4 slices of pizza for dinner. Or at least desperately WANTING to do that.

Have any of you gone through this? Did it last or was it just a phase? Maybe I feel like this because I finally put my foot down in real life, and it impacted my relationship with food? I don't know.
I've been reading threads on this forum for a couple of months now, but this is the first time I've tried to post (I hope I get it right!). I too have been experiencing a radical change in my attitude towards eating, & I'm also afraid it won't last. I'm 54yrs. old, & have been losing, & gaining back, weight for about 40 yrs. Last year, in June, I got on the scale & found out I'd ballooned up to 250lbs., & I decided this has got to stop! By the end of the year I'd managed to lose 50lbs. & felt pretty good, so I decided to focus on maintaining - something I'd never done before (I guess I thought if I lost the weight it would somehow magically stay off??!!!). I made one hard & fast rule for myself - "if you're hungry eat, if you're not - Don't!" At first I had to constantly argue with myself, my first instinct when stressed, or bored, or sad, or happy, etc., etc.... was to grab food. In the last couple of months though, I've been noticing I'm not even wanting to eat unless I'm hungry, & I drink lots of water - thats new, & I'm eating a little healthier. Now I keep wondering "who is this person" & "will the old me suddenly come back?". I don't really know how I made the change, so I don't trust it to last (but I sure hope it does!). Oh, & I've lost 25 more pounds this year & still seem to be losing!
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Old 12-01-2010, 01:50 PM   #9
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I think a big part of it for me is learning to do something different, other than eat that is, with my stress.
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