Thursday, October 18, 2007

A good week, so far

I've been doing really well on food and exercise since Sunday. Weekends are hardest for me, so I know I can get through the rest of today and Friday, but Saturday and Sunday will be my real challenges.

Exercise is going pretty well, although I would like to get to the point where I can do a lot more with a lot less resting. I've done something every day, though. Monday I jogged, Tuesday I did a few toning videos off the cable OnDemand that added up to about twenty minutes. Wednesday I should have jogged again, but the shoes I bought on the weekend had made my toes go numb on Monday, so I had no shoes. Instead I did more OnDemand videos for about 30 minutes total, including a Tae Bo one that made me feel about as graceful as an elephant. Tonight I will probably be doing a couch potato-esque workout: toning exercises while watching TV. Not ideal, but it's what fits in right now and it's better than nothing. Tomorrow will be a cardio day again, but it'll undoubtedly be another video day.

I found this site today that I love, although I think it's been around for a while. I wish I had known about it before! I found Hungry Girl while I was looking for these Tofu Shirataki noodles, and I love it. I haven't seen it all yet, but so far I've seen recipes that look really good and a section called Chew the Right Thing. They list a "bad" food, like a patty melt or a sausage breakfast sandwich, and then show a healthy food that can be a commercial product or a recipe. I'm looking forward to seeing it all, I think it'll be a really big help for me since I love food so much.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Not-so-startling revelation

Yesterday DH and I were in the car riding home. I was eating a rice cake, and after a few bites I realized I didn't like it--normally I do, but this one tasted funny. So I threw it out the window. When DH asked what I was doing, I said "I didn't like it, so I stopped eating it. I should do that more often." Then, like a lightbulb that should have come on a long time ago, I thought, "Hey. I really should do that more often." I stuck with it all day yesterday, even through a birthday party with cake. (I had no cake--I had decided that before it was even cut. It was a store bought cake and I don't ever really like them. I always have a piece, but the frosting always leaves a residue and the cake usually tastes fake.)

This brings me to another thing I saw online the other day while I was messing around. Paraphrased, it said "No one ever wakes up in the morning wishing they'd eaten more the night before, but most of us have woken up wishing we'd eaten less." It was another "so-obvious-why-didn't-I-think-it" moment. How many times have I eaten something at night just because I was bored and woke up in the morning wondering why I ate all of it when it wasn't even that great and I wasn't hungry?

I went jogging this morning--well, I jogged some and walked some. It was much nicer than walking on a treadmill or riding the exercise bike. I may try and see if I can get in one last round of golf before it gets too cold. I once saw something on Oprah that said that it was great if you played tennis, golfed, swam, whatever, but those were "activities," and "activities" were not to be confused with or used in lieu of "exercise," which is apparently to be done in a gym and preferably with a trainer. I say that's crap. It may work for some people, but in the past when all my exercise has been in a gym or on a machine I've just found excuses not to do it. I'd much rather look forward to playing a round of golf or taking a swim than dreading my hour on the treadmill. It may be different for others, but this is what I have to do to make it work for me.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Excuses, excuses, excuses

Today and yesterday were bad days as far as diet is concerned--and exercise, too, but I've got an injury to explain that. Anyway, I spent most of the day(s) frustrated and feeling defeated and thinking that I just wanted to quit, when it occurred to me that what I was thinking was nothing but a bunch of excuses that would allow me to eat what I want, when I want. Which means all the time.

Here are some of the defeatist attitudes that I need to get rid of if I'm ever going to succeed.

1. I'll start tomorrow/I screwed up so I can eat what I want for the rest of the day. Any good dieting article or book should include the advice that when you screw up, you get back on the horse right away. Not tomorrow, not the next day, not next Monday. This very minute. I cannot tell you how many days I've eaten something "forbidden" (a term I really don't like, because that just means you want it all the more) and decided that meant that I had messed up, so I could eat want I wanted for the rest of the day and start again tomorrow. For me, and I suspect many other people with similar problems with food, this translates to "eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die."

2. I don't really care if I'm fat/This is how I'm meant to be. Some days I really wish I could make myself believe this one. Life would be so much easier if I could accept myself the way that I am: fat and addicted to food. I would be happy. But I would also be happy to be "normal," with food having no control over me.

I once had a professor mention in a lecture that if he could he would rather not have to eat, that food for him was an annoyance, something he had to stop working to do. He didn't like to eat, he didn't care what his food tasted like. To me, this was a shocking thing to say for many reason. First of all, how could you not like food or not care what it tasted like? Second of all, how could you have something more important than food that you would be annoyed to have stopped so that you could eat? Didn't everyone look forward to each mealtime from the moment they woke up, planning what they would eat, how they would prepare it, what order they would eat it in?

I want to be like that. That is my fantasy of normal. I don't think it will ever happen for me so completely--I was raised to love food and eat beyond full, and I don't know if I'll ever be able to fully overcome that--but I would like to get to the point where every day, every meal, every bite, is a struggle. I would like to be able to eat and stop when I'm full without having to sit and stare down the remaining food for twenty minutes. But maybe I'll never get to that point. I think if I got to the point where I at least won the staring contest I'd be happy. Or happier.

I actually tried to convince myself the other day that my dad's history of diabetes wasn't that big of a deal. It may be, it may not be. I have never had a problem with blood sugar, including during my two pregnancies, so it may be that I am not going to have a problem with diabetes. None of the women on my dad's side do, after all.

It may be, though, that it just hasn't happened yet. My dad's diabetes came on when he was in his late forties, and I'm pretty sure that's when my uncle's came on, too. I'm in my mid-twenties, so it may be twenty years before I have to face the diabetes monster. I'd rather have things under control long before that time comes around. And, to be frank, I have been struggling with food and weight for over half my life now--my first diet was when I was twelve. When I think of doing the same thing for the next twenty years or more, I want to cry or hit something. (Or have some pasta.)

3. I can eat a TV dinner if it's under X calories. While this may be true for some people, it's not for me. In fact, processed food should be removed from my diet as much as humanly possible. I am way too sensitive to sodium to be eating most of it. I'm tired of having fingers swollen up twice their normal size in the morning and not being able to wear my engagement ring for fear I won't be able to get it off.

Also, even if I didn't have a problem with sodium, there is a lot more satisfaction available in 500 calories of homemade food and 500 calories of TV dinner food. Usually you can get a lot more bang for your buck by making it yourself, and in more ways than one. Homemade food is cheaper and you'll get more food for your 500 calories. And the absence of a plasticky or chemical-y flavor is nice, too.

4. I'm hungry, so I should eat. If I've just eaten a big meal and I'm still hungry, I should not eat. If I just ate an hour ago and I'm hungry I shouldn't eat. If I'm getting ready to go to bed I shouldn't eat. This is a hard one for me, because everyone keeps saying things along the line of "if you only eat when you're hungry, you'll be fine." Well, my body is used to running on a lot more calories than it needs. If I cut it off, it's going to protest and think that it needs that extra food. It doesn't. The thing is, I have to convince myself not to eat when my stomach's growling and I feel hollow. I have, to some degree or another, been able to do all the other things on my list at some point in the past, when I had been doing really well with my eating and exercise. I don't know that I've ever done this one. It's so contrary to what I've been taught and what I myself believe. I think this is going to be one of the most difficult attitudes/habits for me to break.

That's it for now, although I'm sure I have a bunch more that are so ingrained that I don't even recognize them for what they are.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Mmm, food

That is my attitude this morning. I got up at 5:30 but have accomplished just about nothing. Well, the kids are both bathed. And I'm dressed. That's it.

I've been feeling very food-oriented today. My meal plan is off for the week since DH couldn't find (or forgot) a few very important things on the grocery list. When I went in to eat breakfast this morning, I found that we had no oatmeal. For a second, I was seriously tempted to eat a piece or two of leftover pizza. Then I realized how ridiculous that sounded. "We didn't have any oatmeal, so I had pizza instead." I settled for cereal, but I did eat some pieces of krab meat a few hours after that. And they were good. I could go for some more.

Sometimes I think that I would rather be fat than moderate my eating. If it weren't for my family history of diabetes, I think that might very well end up being the case. As it is, I'm apparently becoming hypersensitive to sodium since my fingers are swollen every morning when I wake up. (30 or 40 ounces of water usually makes it go down, but it's annoying.)

I'm going to try very hard not to eat until lunch. I have no idea what we'll be eating, but I do know that I have plenty to do to keep me occupied until then. It's just a matter of doing it.

Monday, October 1, 2007

We're free!

We are finally in our own apartment! Sunday night was the first night here, and it's so nice. Of course, when I asked my mother what she thought of it she said "I'm happy if you're happy." And I am happy. So I guess everyone is delirious.

I actually have tried to post in the last month, but apparently Blogger and dial-up don't get along very well. Now, though, it's back to cable internet. I also need to get back to dieting. I've been trying to just kind of self-regulate without a food diary or any journaling and I think we all know how well I do with that sort of thing. I did get an excellent toning workout yesterday, though--our apartment is on the second floor and I must have taken those stairs fifty times. I shall have buns of steel yet.