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Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Weight Loss Continues

Life is a series of 'ups' and 'downs' with periods of 'evenness' in between.  That's just the way it is. Nothing we can do about it, and nothing we can do to change it.  Except for the problems that arise as consequences from poor decision making on our part, the only thing we have control over is the way we react to the 'ups' and 'downs'.  It is our reactions, our responses to these 'ups' and 'downs' that can, for some of us, influence our diets and eating patterns.

I am working on separating my desire to eat from my feelings.  There have been times when I find myself walking into the kitchen to get something to eat, knowing that I'm not hungry because it's only been and 'hour' since I had a meal.  That's not hunger, that's a response to feelings. Permanent weight loss will be impossible for me as long as I'm 'eating my feelings'.

Fortunately these last few weeks.....so far....every time I'm about to get something to eat, just because I'm 'feeling' it, I have stopped myself from indulging and turned around and walked out of the kitchen.

Therefore, the weight loss continues!!!!! Yea, me!!!!!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

One and Two

As I mentioned in my last post, in my opinion there are two essential parts to being successful with conscious eating, or 'eating the way slender people eat'.  Those of us who are trying to eat consciously must consciously be aware of both parts at every meal and every snack.  Here goes:

1. Eating consciously means eating only until you are full.  I have had friends say to me, "But I don't always know when I'm full."  I understand that statement and most of my life have lived by the "I'm eating till my plate is empty" model, because I don't recognize this full feeling. 
     The truth is that our bodies will give us a signal for when enough food has been eaten during a meal.  In order to eat only until we are full, we must learn to recognize and acknowledge that signal no matter how much delicious food is still on our plate.  We must be willing to admit that it's there, even when we want to ignore the signal. 

2. Again, eating consciously requires that once you feel the signal for fullness that your body gives you, eating must stop.  In my opinion this is the hardest part, because sometimes we just don't want to stop.  Oh, man. There's still baked potato with all the trimmings on my plate. There's only half a slice of garlic toast left; surely I can eat that. That won't be much. In order to do this with integrity, you must stop eating once you feel that full signal.  If the food left on your plate can't be saved for whatever reason, it goes in the trash.  That's hard if you were raised with the starving children in China, as I was.  However, no matter what, conscious eating is not conscious eating, and you will never be slender, unless you are willing to throw good food in the trash.  It is a difficult, but critical lesson to learn.

Yes. This is hard.  But you know, so is living with knee problems, diabetes, back issues, heart problems, and a myriad of other health issues that are caused by being overweight.  Those of us who live our lives with too much girth can give you a list of ways that said girth has affected the way we live.  We choose our challenges. We choose our rewards.  Let's choose wisely. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Two Parts, Both Essential

Ok, so today I had a small bowl of left over spaghetti for lunch. It tasted great, and my intention was to eat some watermelon after I finished the spaghetti.  Well, when my bowl was empty, I was full, but I still wanted the watermelon. No matter what, I wanted the watermelon.  I love watermelon.  Nothing was going to keep me from my serving of watermelon.....

I put some watermelon in a bowl and sat down at the table, still feeling the fullness that came after eating the spaghetti, but dadgumit, I wanted to eat the watermelon.  I ate about three bites, and then I decided that the watermelon would taste better in the middle of the afternoon as a snack.  I put it back in the refrigerator to save for later.  There.  I felt better.  I didn't over eat, nor did I deprive myself. I'm looking forward to some delicious watermelon in a couple of hours.

Conscious eating (eating the way slender people eat) has two major components that are essential to the success of this plan.  Naturally slender people don't think about this.  They do both parts, uh, naturally.  Those of us who are challenged in the area of controlling our food intake must consciously be aware of and be compliant with both components.

Next post: A discussion of the two components.

Monday, June 11, 2018

This War is Not Won in a Day, a Week, or Even a Lifetime, But It Is Worth Fighting

There are some problems that are easily solvable. You can flip a switch, replace a valve, write a letter, make a phone call, or any number of easily done things, and boom; that problem is solved. Some problems/challenges/wars are harder to solve and take longer to get the job done. Those might require a series of battles that have to be met head-on and dealt with on a number of occasions. These might include health issues, relationship issues, as well as work issues or a variety of problems.

Those of us who have weight issues have a different sort of problem.  This type of challenge is more akin to drug and alcohol addiction than anything else, in my opinion.  This problem/war lasts a lifetime and is never, ever won.  However, please do not be discouraged.  It is a war worth fighting.  Getting control of my eating approximately 3 months ago has made a huge difference in the way I feel, as well as the way I now view food. It has also altered my eating habits.

I realize that eating like a thin person might one day make me a thin person.  Won't that be awesome! I further realize that if I quit eating like a thin person, I will never, ever have a chance of being thin. 

If anyone reading this blog, (and I thank you for being one of my readers) can relate to my food battles, please take heart.  This takes work. No one can force you into anything when it comes to food.  You must decide for yourself and for your own reasons.  Please consider stepping into the eating world of thin people.  Eat what you want, but eat only when you are hungry, and eat only till you feel full.  That's it!

Friday, June 8, 2018

20 Pounds! 20 Pounds! I've Lost 20 Pounds!!!

Yes, a milestone has been reached.  In terms of weight loss, those numbers that end in a 5 or 0 are significant.  It has taken me about 12 weeks to reach this level. I can do the math and figure out how much longer it will take me to reach my overall goal, but right now I just want to enjoy the moment and be reminded that consistently doing good things in small ways, in seemingly insignificant ways eventually leads to large, significant differences in our lives.

Yes. Yes. Thank you for your congratulations.

Now, on to the next 20 pounds. I got this.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Too Stressed to Eat? I Wish!

I have a precious friend who is one of those naturally thin people. Always has been. Always will be.  Naturally thin.  We were talking about stress one day, and I shared with her the problem I have always had with overeating when I'm stressed or when I've been through something traumatic like the death of a family member.  I remember quite well her reply, "Oh, not me.  When I get stressed, I can't eat." Really. Too stressed to eat.  What a concept! When I get stressed, I want a hamburger, no, a bacon cheeseburger.  Who's with me on this?

I was reminded of our conversation a couple of days ago. In the middle of the afternoon I found myself in the kitchen looking for something to eat.  I'm only allowing myself to eat certain things for snacks between meals. A handful of nuts, a banana, or an apple.  On this day I didn't want any of those things, and I really wasn't hungry.  It had not been long since I had eaten, and I knew hunger was not the reason I was in the kitchen.  I was just stressed for some reason.  I was feeling the stress, not hunger.

This has been a dilemma all my life. I have covered it in previous posts from an emotional angle. I've heard it described as 'eating my feelings'. Obviously as a 'conscious eater' I can't be governed by my feelings when I eat.  I must be guided and controlled simply by whether or not I am truly hungry. 

As I have written about these challenges that are ever present, serving as pot holes and speed bumps on my weight loss journey, I have also tried to write about a strategy that I plan to implement to assist me in dodging these obstacles.  My strategy for this dilemma of the desire, the compulsion to eat when I am stressed, is simply to borrow and modify my friend's reply, "Eat? Oh no, I can't possible eat. I'm too stressed right now."  I'll let you know how well it works. ;-) 

Monday, June 4, 2018

My Forever Challenge? Popcorn?!?!

So I have been doing very well with this weight loss approach ("the eating only till I get full" approach). Yesterday my husband and I ate lunch at a Chinese cafe with friends. I ate about a third of my broccoli beef and rice meal, and then I was full. The rest went home with me and will be eaten in the next day or two.  I'm so looking forward to those delicious leftovers.  Yes. That is working out fine and is not hard at all.

Well, last night my husband and I were watching a movie, and he said, "Would you like some popcorn?"  We love to make popcorn. We have an old, old popcorn maker that we bought at a thrift store for $5, and we are getting more than our money's worth from it. We enjoy the popcorn from it much more that microwave popcorn.  The problem? I have no stopping place when I eat popcorn.  My husband make a lot of popcorn last night and I ate my share and more.  I got full and kept on eating simply because there was more popcorn to eat.  Needless to say, my weight was not at 'a new low' this morning when I stepped on the scales. :-////

I have always loved popcorn.  I have often said, "How much popcorn can/will I eat?  However much popcorn there is!" Not great grammar, but you get the idea.  I can/will eat it with or without salt, and butter. I can/will eat it air popped or oil popped. I can/will eat it microwaved or popped in our wonderful old popper. 

Yep. I must admit it. Popcorn is a problem for me. I asked my husband to please make half as much popcorn the next time. I think that will be the best solution for me.  If there is only a small amount of  popcorn available, then I will only be able to eat a small amount! Right? See, problem solved. Unless I decide to make a second 'batch'.   ;-/