The Battle Continues

Three years into owning this new, slimmer body, it seems things have only gotten worse.

I’ve put on a couple from my lightest, and now I feel like a normal-sized woman who has put on a few, instead of a heavier woman who proudly dropped three sizes. My self-worth seems tied to a number on the scale, versus how I feel.

I find I am far more critical of myself than one ought to be. Instead of admiring my leaner, stronger legs, I’m obsessed with the number on the scale which has gone up the past year. I’m bemoaning the fact that my clothes still fit, but don’t fall as nicely. I’m staring at my midsection in the mirror, poking at “fat” that wasn’t there at my leanest.

(The irony is, when I was heavy, I never noticed fat on my hips…and since I lost several inches from them… clearly I wasn’t preoccupied with them before).

I think about food all too often: what I’ve eaten, what I will eat, if I’m hungry or bored, where we’ll have dinner on Friday, how many calories I’ve eaten today or how many I have left in the bank.

And when I’m not thinking about food, I’m thinking of my workouts. Did I burn enough calories today? If I lift, will I have time for cardio? Did I eat enough to get in a good workout? Or did I just eat back my workout? .

I have used the analogy with friends that I was an A student (at goal) and now that I’ve gained, I’m a B student. And it’s my attitude of not being ok with getting a B that is probably standing in the way of a lifetime of joy for me…and a lifetime of unnecessary obsession.

I share my story today because this is my goal for this year…to change these destructive thought and behavior patterns and hopefully raise awareness about this very real condition that privately plagues so many women.

I want to overcome disordered eating before it ruins my life. It’s not a healthy way to live, and to overcome this I need to be happy with my body as it is now…not as it was at my leanest. Only then will I be able to tackle my demons.

As they say, awareness is half the battle. The other half is making the change.

The first step in my action plan is coming clean, today. Putting this down on paper makes it real; I can’t hide behind this curtain of shame anymore. Talking about it in a group format or therapy are two notions I am toying with at the moment, as well—both were recommended in the SELF survey following my alarmingly high score.
 
Secondly, I am going to start journaling my feelings associated with food and exercise. More often than not, my eating is emotional and not always physical. So to get to the root of why I am eating when I am not hungry, for example, I will include notes. Did I overeat at dinner because I was in a social setting? Or did I eat ice cream I didn’t need before bed because I was upset about work? Pin-pointing the “why” will help me as I go forward.

Finally, I have created my own blog to guide me, and other women who can relate, along this journey to physical and mental well-being. Writing has always been therapeutic and I hope it will continue to be. The advice in Beck’s Diet Solution has also been a great help to me as I cope with emotional eating issues. I plan to incorporate some of those messages into my writing—and my actions.

I am ashamed of the “me” I’ve become, but I am not discouraged. All hope is not lost. I have faith in myself that with the commitment and energy I invested to lose weight, I can use it to find gain some of “me” back.

7 thoughts on “The Battle Continues

  1. Hey, I am enjoying reading your blog. I relate to a lot of what you say.

    I have lost about 30 pounds over the last few yeras, but instead of being proud of that – I’m always obsessing over the next 30. Instead of being proud of how much stronger and leaner I am, I am more disgusted with my body than ever. I wonder why we are like that?

    Keep blogging – maybe we can figure it all out someday! 🙂 You are a great writer! I’ll definitely be back.

  2. Thanks Carolina Girl and congrats on your losses! It’s hard not to always want more. It’s the American way, isn’t it? A double-edged sword and possibly a blog topic for next week!

    Keep reading and blogging will be an integral piece of this proverbial pie for sure!

  3. It amazes me that someone feels exactly the way I do. I feel ashamed of myself most days, especially seeing as my family and boyfriend has to put up with it. Eating/health/nutrition isn’t just an interest or a lifestyle anymore…it’s an obsession for me. It’s all I think about and it interferes with every part of my life.

    When you described how you watched other people eat all their points in one meal, I do that with calories and I think how good i am doing and it makes me feel better about myself, which is sad and it’s hard to admit.

    It’s good in a bad way though to know that I am not “Crazy” and that there are other’s out there going through the same thing.

  4. Hi,
    Scales are the abomination of the planet. I run a clinic treating people with eating disorders. As a qualified hypnotherapist and licensed NLP practitioner I spend most of my time battling the issue you have raised here.
    Step one – throw the scales away. Now I know that sounds impossible. But the only thing a set of scales do is to confirm to yourself how much of a failure you think you are. The cannot tell you on any given day how much your lean muscle mass, body fat, water have changed due to what you have eaten. Even the best body composite monitor in the world will tell you what it is today but not why.
    Your body will naturally adjust all of these for a whole host of complicated reasons that no scale is ever going to tell you. So stop relying on it like it can.
    Step two – Believe in yourself!!!! I can’t say that enough. Every single person I work with is with me becuase they don’t believe in themselves.

    If anyone wants specific advice, please contact me at Info@weighlessway.com

  5. Thanks so much for your input, Mark — I really appreciate it and will add you to my blogroll, if that’s ok. Thank you!!

  6. It’s scary how much I can relate to you all! Gives me hope! Makes me feel like I am not so alone in this! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s