Friday, October 11, 2013

Food Issues

A few days ago, I was talking to a CP about doing a treat reward with writing. Write so many words and then get a yummy treat! Sounds like a great idea but I opted out.

Why? I've got food issues.

It didn't used to be this way. All through high school, I could eat pretty much what I wanted and stay the same weight. I was never the skinny-mini, nor was I overweight. I gained the freshman fifteen at college (and after) but lost it on a very unhealthy diet of a supersized McDonald's meal once a day (no joke). Even during four pregnancies, I gained the appropriate amount of weight, 30-35lbs, and even though it got harder after each birth to lose it again, I always did.

Once number four was born, I decided I'd really get in shape. I'd exercise. I wanted to look good and lose that baby belly. So I went on Weight Watchers. I didn't actually go to the meetings or get weighed, but I did it all at home. I kept a food diary, keeping track of every single thing I put in my mouth and how many points it was worth. I obsessed over food. It became all I thought about. On cheat days, I would gorge myself so bad on junk, I'd make myself sick.

I'm not gonna lie, Weight Watchers worked. And I'm not knocking the program- if you use it right, you get results, while still getting to eat foods that you love. I weighed less than I did in high school. I thought I had it all under control so I went off the program. I already knew what I should and shouldn't eat and how big portion sizes should be. It would be easy, right?

Hahahahahaha. (That's me, laughing maniacally at myself.) I gained it all back plus some. DUH. For awhile, I didn't care. I thought, no one else cares about how much I weigh except me, so why bother? I want to enjoy life, not starve. I felt sort of like this:

Then I saw a picture of myself while in Hawaii and thought ICK. So I tried the LoseIt app. Then quit. Then tried again. Then quit. I exercised. Then quit. Then exercised. Then quit.

See what I mean about issues? I eat when I'm stressed. When I'm tired. When I'm in a bad mood. Not only that, but I LOVE food. The good stuff as well as most of the bad. In fact, I'm surprised that I haven't been bigger, gained more. (Thank you metabolism. I guess you're still chugging away.)

I needed a change. I didn't want to go back to obsessing over food to the point that it controlled my life. Nor did I want to go back to not caring. So I decided that I needed an in-between. I needed to just Make. Better. Choices.

I don't keep a food diary, I don't measure out portions. But I go for healthier things. Instead of a two cheeseburgers meal and regular fries at McDonald's, I eat a grilled chicken snack wrap and a small fries. Instead of eating chimichangas for lunch (LOVE those), I eat a lot of salads. (Funny enough, I eat more salads now than I did on Weight Watchers. I think it's because I don't have to measure out each portion of vegetables.) When I eat something I probably shouldn't have (like last night's mozza sticks and Whopper Jr.), I don't beat myself up about it. Also, I've exercised pretty consistently since January. I've gotten enough into a routine that it doesn't take much thought to do it. I even enjoy it- or more likely, I enjoy the TV shows I watch while doing it.

I'm trying to get a better mentality when it comes to food. I'm trying to make those better choices. This is something I know I'll wrestle with my entire life, and it doesn't just have to do with food, but with my mental state (that sounds bad). This is something I definitely cannot connect with my writing.

So wish me luck, or give me a kick in the pants if you see me eating chips.


  1. i know exactly how you feel! I gained more than the recommended weight gain with my babies, but it came off fairly easily...until number three. Then number four came along and it became impossible. Even while working out, my eating was out of control so I made very little progress. Weight is such a sensitive issue, especially for women, and it shouldn't be! I'm glad you've found what works for you, it's different for everyone, but as long as you're being healthy and love yourself despite your love handles and cellulite, it's all good :)

  2. Same boat, right here. I used to be able to eat whatever I wanted whenever I wanted, but my metabolism has slowed down a lot. That and the fact that I'm far more sedentary that I ever used to be makes for a bad combination if I'm not careful. The problem is, I like food that isn't good for me, and I'm not willing to cut it out of my life and live solely off of roughage. The key is, like you say, to make better choices while not completely cutting that stuff out. And not to beat yourself up if you do eat something totally crappy. I think rewarding ourselves with food in any way is almost always a bad idea. Linking these treats to writing is, as you say, one of those bad ideas. You're not alone, Melanie. I think a lot of use can relate to this. :-)