Changing my mind

Well, I have lost some weight.

And as I’ve gotten on the scale to see, the whole fear and old haunting voices have come out to challenge me:

You're no good!
You'll never succeed!
What if everyone sees the real you - 
what will you hide behind then???
What if you get so skinny, you get sick and die?
What if I choke and get so skinny - and die?

Yes, these are the thoughts running through my head.  And I have become painfully aware of my power.  My power to choose.  To choose to believe the lies.  Or to reject the lies and search for the truth.  And what is the truth?

The truth is that I can step out into the sun, I can feel the gentle breeze on my face.  I can break down the walls I’ve been hiding behind my entire life.  In Jesus, I am safe, loved and accepted.  I can embrace my husband and my life as blessings from God.  I can embrace God who loves me completely.  I can trust in who God created me to be.  I can trust God will always guide me saying, “Here is the path.”  I can trust God has created me fearfully and wonderfully.  I will NOT give up.  I will reap the harvest of blessing if I do NOT give up.

So, as tempted as it is to follow the well-worn paths in my brain to believing the lies, and falling down the well again, I can choose to believe the truth.  This time, I am focusing on God’s word, His truth and His unending love for me.

My reasons for wanting to lose weight!

Yesterday, was a tough day for me.  I had sugar lows that I was shaking, but I had eaten.  And I had eaten what I would normally eat – so it wasn’t like I was missing out or anything.  Then, I had a protein shake to help stabilize my blood sugar – then I felt so full, I couldn’t even eat supper last night.  Okay, I did – but it was a small portion.

And once again, I just go despondent, but then I thought of my post from last week.  I can’t tell you how much that helped.

There is a reason why I am on this journey – stinking thinking got me into this mess.

Correct, positive and healthy thinking will go along way to getting me out of this mess.

And one of the ways to correct your thinking is to remind yourself why you’re doing something in the first place.

And I have TEN solid reasons for wanting to lose weight:

  1. I want to lose weight to get back to my true self – before negative thinking and destructive self talk took over.
  2. I want to lose weight to be fit, slim, trim and healthy.
  3. I want to lose weight to run faster and better.
  4. I want to lose weight because I want to look like an athlete – not a wobbly, middle-aged mom wannabe…
  5. I want to lose weight because I want to give my husband who he married -a slender, healthy wife.
  6. I want to lose weight because I don’t want my life to revolve around food, and eating at every opportunity – that’s not how I want to live my life.
  7. I want to lose weight because I don’t want to live my live succumbing to cravings that I seem unable to control.  I am stronger than this!  I am made from sterner stuff – I don’t have to be controlled by my stomach!
  8. I want to lose weight to give glory to God for my victory over negative thinking, and destructive self-talk.
  9. I want to lose weight to give my daughter a healthy concept of what it means to be a woman.
  10. I want to lose weight to prove to myself that I can do this

Even now, just writing these reasons over again, it helps – I still find it quite ironic that before I had Baby Girl, I was wanting to gain weight, believing I was too skinny.  Now, I’m wanting to lose weight.  Whether you want to gain or lose, you need to know the why…  It helps!

What is your reason for wanting to lose weight?

Giving up Sugar… and trying to be an Athlete!

This is not easy…

All I’ve done is give up sweets & chocolates…  And on Saturday I did a new Parkrun (which was very, very tough) and I craved simply everything sugary and sweet in sight.  I mean, I even drank a Fanta Grape and I never, ever drink fizzy cool drinks.  But, the craving was so strong, I actually – quite simply – could not help myself.

Then I had milk.

Then I had a smoothie from Kauai.
Then I had some more Fanta Grape.

Clearly, after running my body is needing something.  But, I have no idea what that something is or what I can give my body that isn’t sugary and sweet and completely unhealthy for you.  After the craving subsided, I have been fine since…

I need to come up with an action plan that I can actually stick to, but I think the one thing that I try to remind myself to do is to list the reasons of why I actually want to lose weight:

  1. I want to lose weight to get back to my true self – before negative thinking and destructive self talk took over.
  2. I want to lose weight to be fit, slim, trim and healthy.
  3. I want to lose weight to run faster and better.
  4. I want to lose weight because I want to look like an athlete – not a wobbly, middle-aged mom wannabe…
  5. I want to lose weight because I want to give my husband who he married -a slender, healthy wife.
  6. I want to lose weight because I don’t want my life to revolve around food, and eating at every opportunity – that’s not how I want to live my life.
  7. I want to lose weight because I don’t want to live my live succumbing to cravings that I seem unable to control.
  8. I want to lose weight to give glory to God for my victory over negative thinking, and destructive self-talk.
  9. I want to lose weight to give my daughter a healthy concept of what it means to be a woman.
  10. I want to lose weight to prove to myself that I can do this…

There we go – 10 reasons to remind myself of why I am doing this whenever the cravings or the anxiety hit…  10 good and solid reasons for wanting to lose weight.  Let’s hope and pray that I can now make this happen.

Giving up Sugar – and battling with my decision!

Oh, man, last week in my quest to quit sugar, I decided to start off slowly and cut out just sweets and chocolates.  Bread, biscuits, donuts, etc can come later.  So, I have not had one sweet or chocolate since last week (basically, the beginning of February).  And last week was okay – I felt strong.

However…

This week has been a battle.  I have craved, completely craved chocolate.  I have managed to hold out and they do say I need to swap out the need for something sweet with something I can have, like an apple.  So, I have had more apples in the last week than in quite a while

But, the taste of chocolate – I am really battling this week.

I have had a few side effects though – a little anxiety, a little sleeplessness (could also be the heat), a little thirst…  But nothing too bad.  Oh, and headaches, and feeling a little faint and light-headed.

But, I have to persevere…  At the moment, I don’t have diabetes or any weight related problems, but if I keep on my current trajectory, then I will definitely develop all of these things (especially considering old age diabetes runs in the family).

Hubby and I have also given up having a glass of wine with dinner during the week (i.e. from Monday to Thursday), but allow ourselves to have a glass on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  I read that white wine (my favourite) has a much higher sugar content than red, and if I want to drink wine I need to opt for red.

So, this past week has been tough.

And on Sunday, my brother and his wife came to visit.  My brother has lost 12 kg’s since the beginning of the year.  I’ve been trying to lose weight for the last seven years.  The difference is though all he had to do was give up drinking coke (or any fizzy soft drink) and bread.  I don’t drink coke, and I don’t have sugar with my tea or coffee (he has THREE teaspoons of sugar with his tea).  So, I kinda feel cheated on – my one little enjoyment in life I have had to give up to make headway in the battle of the bulge.  Just doesn’t seem right somehow…  He is looking amazing though!  And I truly believe that any weight loss just helps keep your body healthy and strong.

After this, I hope to give up bread or biscuits!

I’m addicted to sugar…

We all know that we shouldn’t eat too much sugar, and while I have taken great lengths to go from two or three teaspoons of sugar in my coffee to none, I haven’t given up chocolates (I mean, who gives up chocolate), biscuits, sweets and ice-cream.  I guess there’s my weight right there…

Anyway, I have now decided to cut down on my sugar intake and to start eating more sensibly.  I fear my brain may be so fried from all the sugar intake that this may be a more difficult feat than what I realise.

After my lunch at work yesterday, I had a slab of mint chocolate (my favourite).  And I thought I would just have a small block or two.  I finished the entire slab.  The whole thing.  In about five minutes I had flattened the entire slab of chocolate and that’s when I realised that I have a sugar addiction.  I couldn’t get enough of the chocolate and I couldn’t get it fast enough.

It scared me.

I was always the girl who didn’t have a sweet tooth, who probably only ate one meal a day, who was teased for “eating like a bird”, who was the “naturally skinny” one in class – in her group of friends…

Me…

Now wolfing down a slab of chocolate in under five minutes flat.

This is not who I am.

It is only because I had this thought in my head that I have nurtured my entire life that there is something wrong with me, and that I had to start eating as much as I can to “fix” me!  And that thought has grown and grown and now I see myself as this fat person – I feel comfortable where I am.

But, it is not me…

Because it hasn’t resolved any of my issues.  I’m still completely body conscious, shy, insecure and overly analytical.  Picking up weight and eating everything in sight has only caused me to well, pick up weight – I’m still just me.  Well, a rather larger me.

So, now, I have to wean myself off sugar.

My first step is to stop eating chocolates and sweets.  In fact, with Lent coming up, it’s a good thing to quite over the 40 days (and then to maintain it going forward).  I’m also giving up wine from a Monday to a Thursday, and just having a glass over the weekend.

I do believe though that no diet or calorie restriction is going to work until I re-work my mind.

Ephesians 4:22-24 New International Version (NIV):  22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self,created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

So, while I am reducing my sugar intake by starting off with cutting out sugar in sweets and chocolate, I need to renew my mind to see myself as a new person who weighs less and eats well.

I came across this article in a simple step plan to combat sugar cravings – the idea is to distract yourself:

1. If at All Hungry, Eat a Meal

2. Take a Hot Shower

3. Go For a Walk, Distance Yourself

Here are some other methods you may find useful.

  • Have a glass of water.  Some people say that cravings can be caused by dehydration.  I am quite good with drinking water every day.

  • Eat a fruit. Having a piece of fruit may help satisfy sugar cravings for some people. Bananas, apples, oranges work great.  I am going to try this – just this afternoon I had an apple, which hopefully will help.  It’s not going to help though if I keep dreaming of chocolate so I need to distract myself and focus on something else.

  • Avoid artificial sweeteners.  If you feel that artificial sweeteners trigger cravings for you, then you might want to avoid them.  I have never in my life had artificial sweetener – I can’t stand the taste, and would rather just cut sugar than resorting to using artificial sweetener.

  • Eat more protein.  Protein is great for satiety, may help with cravings as well.  Not always easy to do at work, but I am trying…

  • Talk to a friend.  Call/go meet someone who understands what you’re going through.  Explain that you’re going through a craving and ask for a few words of encouragement.  If this doesn’t help, or if I don’t have anyone to call, I will talk to myself and reinforce the fact that I am not hungry, I have eaten, but I am having a craving that I don’t need to give into, because that is not who I am.

  • Sleep well.  Getting proper, refreshing sleep is important for overall health and can help prevent cravings.  Although I do have Baby Girl who loves to wake me up all the time, I do try sleep a healthy sleep when and where I can.

  • Avoid excess stress.  Same as with sleep, avoiding stress can help prevent cravings.  I find this sad, because stress used to make me not eat.  Now I grab anything and everything.

  • Avoid certain triggers.  Try to avoid specific activities or places that give you cravings, such as walking past McDonald’s.  Once again, I never had any desire for fast food – at all.  It used to make me feel queasy – now, I can quite happily have a burger every day.  How is it my brain has changed so much.

  • Take a multivitamin. This will help prevent any deficiencies.  I don’t like popping pills…

  • Read your list. It can be very helpful to carry with you a list of the reasons you want to eat healthy, because it can be hard to remember such things when you get a craving.  This is important.  Why I am doing this?  Why can’t I just be happy as I am?  Well, firstly, because its’ not me.  If I was going to be overweight, I would’ve been as a child already.  Secondly, the only reason that I am overweight is because I believed a lie – and now I’m paying the price and I want to get back to who God created me to be.  Thirdly, I want to be healthy.  Fourth, I want to be attractive to my husband, and finally, I want to run faster and look like an athlete instead of a blob.

  • Don’t starve yourself. Try to prevent yourself from becoming too hungry between meals.  Nope, I get too hungry to even contemplate this…

I will keep you posted on how my combating the sugar disease is going.

One Foot Forward at a time...

Weight Gain.

I have gained weight.

Seriously!

I am trying to watch what I eat.  I am trying to exercise more.  I am trying – but clearly what I am trying to do isn’t working.

Perhaps it’s hormonal.  Or laziness.  Or sugar resistance.  Or something… Isn’t it so much easier to blame something outside of ourselves?

The truth of the matter is that I eat too much.  Quite simply, the inflow of food exceeds the outflow of energy.  It really is that simple – even I, who was quite useless at Maths, can figure that one out.  But, I suppose more importantly is the WHY…  Why do I consume so much food?  Or more importantly, why do I not see just how much food I am consuming?

It’s simple…

The first why is that I am scared.  I eat because I am scared.  What am I scared of?  Not existing, making a fool of myself, being teased (that one stems from my childhood): I eat all the time because I have this fear driving me to eat.  It’s not a fear of any one particular thing; its more that I have a fearful nature and eating helps to calm that nature.  Kind of like carrying around a heavy sack just filled with a boat load of fear and anxiety.

And as for the second why – well, when you’re hungry (whether actual physical hunger or emotional hunger), when you see food you tend to eat it.  I’m always asking for more…

And my why for asking for more?  Just in case…

Just in case I’m hungry later…

Just in case I have a sugar low (yeah, fat chance of that happening)…

Just in case I can’t eat later…

Just in case I’m bored…

Just in case I’m scared…

Just in case…

Just in case…

Just in case…

I think I need to rather try:

I’m not going to have seconds just in case I gain more weight.

I’m not going to eat that sugar coated food item just in case I get diabetes.

I’m not going to eat and eat and eat just in case it incapacitates me from truly living life.

Why is health and weight and diet so difficult to manage?

Why can I see all the why’s and what if’s, but I feel so powerless to do anything about it?  Where do I get the power or discipline or focus or whatever is needed to eat a healthy, sustainable, organic diet and actually want to do it?

Where?

 

A losing battle…

Towards the end of last year (end of November’ish), I put my back out after one particularly hectic boot camp session.  And I still have not been able to go back.  Sigh…  I just can’t seem to win.  Anyway, I’m off to the Chiropractor on Monday (had to wait for the New Year so we had new medical aid benefits).

But…

All is not lost.

Hubby and I were in Cape Town over Christmas and I ran the Durbanville Parkrun at Meerendal, as well as the Greenpoint Parkrun.  And I ran a couple of trail runs in between, which considering my rather substantial size at the moment, is quite a feat.  So, while I can’t do the strenuous exercises of Boot Camp, I have been able to run.  I’m still eating everything in sight, and my goal for this year is just to learn to eat slowly: take small bites and eat slowly.

You have to change your mindset about diets and the way you eat, otherwise you will always follow the same old habits.

And that is what I am trying to do…  Change how I think about my health, my weight and getting fit…