Is this time different?

In maintenance since June 1, 2012


The fourth week! This time it is different!

I am now jogging 3.5 minutes without stopping! I could never jog that much! Last week I thought I would not make it because the effort I had to make was huge, but here I am, jogging in the park, watching the birds in the morning, feeling an enormous sense of achievement.
I have lived some hundred meters away from a beautiful park for 20 years and I rarely visited it. Now I am going there every other day, and I am slowly learning my way among the winding paths, the ponds and the bridges. Jogging gives me a lot of peace, and is helping me keep slightly below my maintenance weight. Now that my muscles are harder and there is less fat to complain about, I got into the habit of taking care of my skin more systematically, so I think that soon I will even dare to wear a swimsuit! I have not bought one in around 15 years…
Why do we wait so much to make these changes in our lives? When I started this blog I thought of giving it the title “Is this time different?” because I doubted it would be different this time. Now I know it is, and a lot different: I could never stick to a food plan for six months before, I could never undertake an exercise program seriously, and I kept bingeing and then trying to fast –I never could fast, by the way–, so I could say I waited for around 35 years to build the habits I believe in. Why this long, I wonder? My youth is over and I did not enjoy it! I guess I had to learn many many things before I could build the habits I believed in.
I still need to learn a lot: to plan meals, to choose better, but also to be more politically aware, to manage my time better, to read more. Maybe the key to success is that! Not to think only in terms of food and exercise, but in terms of learning, of growing!

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By susana
On June 28, 2012
At 7:36 pm
Comments : 0

It is better to be older

I don’t have much to tell, but anyway I want to remain accountable and here I am, after some days of not posting. I have been thinking that it is so much better to be older –at least as far as eating is concerned.

I have not lost more weight, but I have learned to be very patient with the scale. Last time I plateaued it took me a month to lose again, so I go for my second month… I learned to think in terms of months and not of weeks. When I was younger I used to think “I want to lose six pounds next week”, and now I say “I want to lose two pounds next month”. When I was younger I always regained what I lost and could not stay on track for more than two weeks –most of the times I started on Monday and quit on Thursday. Now I can proudly say I have been on track for three months, not bingeing once, not feeling deprived or anything. If I ate something “forbidden” one day, I just moved on, went back on plan immediately after the slip, and kept going. That is my victory… It is not weight related –seven kilos in three months is not that bad, though– but life related: now I know I can eat and stop when I am not hungry any longer, that I can go without food for some hours if my options are not healthy –I can wait till I get home, I mean–, that I will feel fine if I have to speak in front of a lot of people, that I am able to finally do the most difficult thing I ever had to do: eat well.

So, it is better to be older, sometimes. You find your balance, you know what makes you tick and what makes you sad, you know where you are heading. You learn to think about today, just today: make the most of the day, be the best you can today, do good to others today. Live as there’s no tomorrow, but staying healthy and not asking food to do for you what you should find somewhere else. It is not good entertainment, it does not do the difficult tasks you are postponing, it does not give you the love you need. It just feeds you.

We need to find affection, to have fun and to obtain our little achievements. We all need that. But food is not the answer…

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By susana
On March 31, 2012
At 3:46 am
Comments :1

And finally, a reward

After weighing 56 kg for almost three weeks, after struggling yesterday with a neverending hungry day, today I wieghed in and discovered I weigh 55. I have not weighed this for around 5-6 years, so it is a day to celebrate! I am only 3 kilos away from my goal, which may not look much to taller people, but we shorties/oldies find it very hard to lose, and 3 kilos really show on us. My intention is to maintain on 52 for several months and then try to lose a couple more if I think I need to. But losing 10 kilos and maintaining would be fantastic for me, since I spent my life losing and gaining always for emotional reasons: I lost weight whenever I felt too bad, and then when I felt only bad or good I ate like crazy. Now that I can eat sort of normal –and go through hard days like yestarday– I feel capable of doing so many other things! I feel empowered, willing to help others along the journey and I am even considering buying gym clothes!

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By susana
On March 5, 2012
At 5:11 am
Comments : 0

On track

I haven’t posted anything for a while, mainly because as I am back from the holidays I am working 24/7 as usual. I have some good news I would like to share:

– I haven’t binged for 8 weeks, which is a LOT for somebody who thought she was abnormal –I didn’t know many people also ate huge amounts in secret. This is good, because one of my objectives is to learn to be in control around food. I have two St. Valentine chocolates in the fridge which I am not touching… Although I am back at work, I don’t feel the need to eat a lot before going to the office.

– The allergies I developed, which I first attributed to food and then to stress, are going away. Once I discovered I itched like crazy when thinking about my job, I started to relax when it started to itch and it is slowly working. Now I am writing about this my arms are starting to itch, but I just let them itch without scratching, which makes it worse… Undoubtedly the stress I worked out via food is trying to find a new outlet!

– I haven’t lost any weight in the past week, but I haven’t gained either. Just giving the scale time to get convinced. This is good, because now I know that if I don’t lose but stay stable, the new weight is “setting in” and my body is getting used to it, getting ready for more loss. I prefer staying stable to bouncing.

– Nobody has noticed -or said anything about- my weight loss. I lost 10 % of my weight, but apparently that doesn’t show. This is good, because I would feel embarrased if people gossiped about my weight. Maybe they are gossiping, but fortunately they are not making any comments in front of me. Shy, ha?

– Foodwise, it’s the usual 1200 cals and no refined carbs. Working slowly, but working. Exercisewise, not doing much yet apart from walking, but as soon as I find the possibility of scheduling time at the gym, I will. I need to by clothes for the gym, which makes me a bit nervous. I bought the running shoes, but nothing else yet. I feel really self-conscious in training gear… Very shy, ha?

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By susana
On February 26, 2012
At 11:18 am
Comments : 0

New use for trail mix: force-feeding!

And I thought I had seen all things weird…

Until last year, whenever I opened a package of trail mix I would consume it all and think that I had contributed to my well being because it was a healthy snack and because nuts are low carb. Now that I understood that low carb works only if it is also low cal, I started to lose weight more successfully. I also understood that trail mix had a huuuge amount of calories and just stopped eating it.

One of the consequences of eating low carb + low cal is that if I don’t eat meat/chicken I don’t pack many cals, so it is quite hard to get to my 1200. I sometimes have to make an effort to get to 1100. Yesterday evening after dinner, when I revised my log and added up my numbers I got to a meagre 650. I was not hungry, but I had to acknowledge that 650 is really little. I suppose the low number was caused by the fact that I ate a lot of cabbage, tomatoes and pumpkin, yogurt and some oats: filling, lots of vitamins, but really low cal.

I then discovered that trail mix may be used to force-feed a lady who is not very hungry but needs to take extra calories without much effort… And I thought I had seen it all! Me, forcing myself 1) to eat; 2) to get to 1200; 3) to finish a package of trail mix!!

Sleep-wise, I changed my stategy: I did not force myself to turn off the light or the TV at a certain time, but finished watching a show and then did it (12.30), when I was sleepy already. As I had not slept well the night before, I had no problem going to sleep. Let’s see what happens tonight!

A little achievement: my holidays are over and I have started to work again; I have not felt stressed yet, neither have I thought of eating without being hungry. Hope it keeps this way!

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By susana
On February 9, 2012
At 6:33 am
Comments : 2

Finally, many kudos for me

After two weeks of not getting below 59 kg, I got to 58 today. Probably I will go up a little again, but at least it seems I have started to break the plateau. Kudos I.

I bought a beautiful chocolate cake with lots of chips and other interesting things, and it is sitting in the fridge for my boys to enjoy. I give them a treat like that once a month, and as they are sportsmen they can eat that kind of food without putting on weight… Good thing is I just don’t think about that cake. I think I don’t even like that taste any longer! Kudos II.

I seem to have found the way to beat constipation too, with mechanical massages. It takes patience, but if I can keep away from laxatives, I don’t mind being patient. Kudos III.

And what I find most important: I am trying to seduce a friend into dieting, just by telling her I am doing well and showing her it is not that difficult. Yesterday we went for coffee and she ordered a huge piece of cake and a smoothie while I had just coffee. She is overweight and getting fatter… So I made jokes about my dieting adventures, we laughed a lot and on leaving she told me she would make an appointment with her nutritionist. Isn’t that a great step? I did not ask her to do it, she just came up with the idea herself after having laughed about my constipation massages and my two-week plateau and the fact I know how many calories you can find in a multi vitamin. I played at being “funnily obsessed” and we had a good time together, never mentioning her weight. I hope she will start to think about losing some , because it will be harder for her if she gets heavier. I won’t speak about this with her again for some weeks, but who knows? Maybe I got her thinking about having some “adventure” like mine! Then, it will be kudos IV.

Well, now for some house cleaning and cooking, sinceĀ  my DS and her fiance are coming to visit. They will love having that chocolate cake for dessert, and I will be sipping tea! I feel great about it!

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By susana
On February 4, 2012
At 5:13 am
Comments : 0

Food and me

Journey2skinny asks if I have tips about changing my relation with food… I don’t know if I can give any kind of advice, but maybe what happened to me may get to be help somebody understand their situation better and find their own tools to eat to live and not the other way around.

I never did any therapy and always wondered what had triggered a behaviour which was far from “normal”: growing up I sneaked into the kitchen to steal cookies, I ate everything I could find when I was home alone –not often, but as soon as my parents went on an errand I started eating–, and in my teens I tried to lose weight by any means: I pretended to eat and hid the food in my napkin, I took diet pills in secret –I was 17 when I started to do that–, I pretended to eat out with friends and skept the meal… and then I would binge when alone. I got married very young and thought that leaving home would fix things, but I got worse: I used to walk to the baker’s to buy pastries “for my husband”, and would eat more than half on the way home. I put on weight, but not so much that people would think it a problem –I was just chubby, not yet overweight.

My marriage was awful. When I was really sad I lost weight because I couln’t eat, but then when things got better I would go back to bingeing. Finally I divorced and stopped caring much about my weight. My normal weight is aroud 110 pounds –less than 100 at 18–, and my heighest was in December 2011, around 124. As you see, it is not obesity but overweight. In a woman who is short, clothes do not fit well with that weight. I have a thin upper body and wide hips and heavy thighs. The fact that I always felt ugly meant that I did not play sports or go out much just because the clothes I used to wear –and still wear– were not appropriate for leisure activities. For instance, in my town many people go boating. I never did, because you cannot go boating wearing a tailor suit, can you?

And then something happened in December 2011. I started to be able to acknowledge how I felt and to be able to stop and ask myself what was going on before attacking the fridge. I came to realize that when I thought of food when not hungry, something was happening to me: instead of covering things up with food, I started to probe into my soul to find out what it was. That, coupled with a low carb food plan, has allowed me so far to keep away from comfort food. Keeping blood sugar low makes it easier to control yourself, and that is what I am doing. I don’t know if I will ever recover completely, but I wish I could some day feel in control of that aspect of my life. I know I have to keep away from cookies and bread –they are my triggers– if I want to think straight. If flour finds its way back into my life again, probably I won’t be able to think clearly.

I notice that now that I feel more in control I am gaining in self-confidence and dare say things and do things I wouldn’t have dared before, though the scale has not moved much. If I ever lose the extra pounds and can dress in a way that makes me feel better, I know I can accomplish a lot. So, I am glad I found this site where I can vent and maybe help somebody else find shortcuts to healing. I thank all those who read this and participate in the forums! I hope you all have very happy lives!

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By susana
On February 1, 2012
At 11:50 am
Comments : 2

A trip and a good challenge

I am back from my trip and guess what? In two days I only went off plan once, and for a croissant. That was it. I ate it because I would still be eating less that 1200 calories that day, and I felt a lot in control. I could have also eaten toast, and cake, and cookies –all there at the hotel, at my hand’s reach– but for breakfast I chose fruit salad, skim yoghurt, and that croissant. I am quite proud of the fact that I could eat carbs and go on being in control the rest of the day. Challenge met! And today it’s my third week without bingeing!

My only problem these days is still my pottywise lazy tummy, but I will dine vegetables to see if it wakes up.

Now for a new week! Wish you all good luck with the plan you have chosen, and a wonderful week as to exercise, family and frieds! Make the most of it!

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By susana
On January 22, 2012
At 3:47 pm
Comments : 2

D + D + A

That title stands for Discouragement, plus Discouragement, plus Achievement.

Discouragement I : Though my scale day is tomorrow, I peeped and I have not lost a pound along the past week. I know it is normal, but I feel discouraged all the same.

Discouragement II : My supervisor sent me her comments on my thesis and she utterly destroyed the first chapter. She corrected things she never objected to before, and is asking me to go back three years in my research and do something different. Huge, ah!

Achievement : I did not binge or break my food plan. I just sobbed a little –I am very tired of studying, and there is still a little girl inside me asking for daddy now and then– and then started to see how I could carry out what she wants. When hungry, I grilled chicken breast, made a salad and ate that. I also ate a raw carrot for fiber.

And… that has been my day. I have one more year to finish my thesis, so I am starting to think that BY THEN I will be thin, right?

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By susana
On January 19, 2012
At 4:24 pm
Comments : 3

Another lunch and a new achievement

I have a lunch buddy who is also a friend and a co-worker. When we have some free time we have lunch together… After a light dish, we used to go for icecream and coffee or order dessert at the restaurant. Today we met for out first 2012 lunch, and we ordered salad as usual. My salad had pinapple in it, which left untouched. When the waitress came for our plates I told her I was keeping the pinapple as dessert… My friend ordered icecream, and as she ate that I ate my pineapple pieces. Then we ordered coffee, the bill, and that was it. I never mentioned I was on a diet, and she did not ask either. Again, I confirm that when I ordered fattening food and blamed others for my choice, I was SO wrong. You can enjoy a delicious meal and a nice moment with somebody you love and not have pasta or pizza. Isn’t that fantastic? It gives me some hope about the possibility of maintaing after I lose the weight.

Today, then: yoghurt for breadfast; fish, celery and hearts of palm for lunch; pineapple for dessert; nuts as snack… and heading for a steak and onions dinner.

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By susana
On January 17, 2012
At 3:45 pm
Comments : 0