Tuesday, June 06, 2006

I am a complete fraud

I saw my therapist last week for the final time. To be honest, she can't help me until I help myself and so far I am unwilling to do that. I am a total fraud. I talked the talk to her -- all about how I was trying not to emphasize losing weight and trying to eat healthier for other reasons, just as Gillian Riley says to do in the book Eating Less. Blah, blah, blah. I've been exercising regularly but not obsessing on burning calories, blah, blah, blah. Then I went home and binged that night.

All weekend I did well on eating healthfully, eating small portions, talking myself out of eating crap -- until evening. Then I fell apart. Last night I ate a small dinner and was satisfied, but really wanted ice cream. I gave myself "the script" -- ice cream will always be around, I can eat it whenever I want, I don't need to eat it, I want to be a mature grown-up and control my greed and not have food control me, etc. I made it as far as leaving the table, going upstairs, and changing my clothes. Then I caved and had a very small dish of ice cream with chocolate sauce. I felt a bit like a failure because I had typed in my food intake into fitday.com and knew that by eating the ice cream I was going over the 1800 calories I wanted to eat for the day. But I didn't beat myself up because it was a small dish of ice cream. Then we took a trip to Lowe's to buy stuff to stain the deck and T surprised us by taking us to a new ice cream store. ARGH. I got a baby cone, but still felt like a total failure. Adding to my failure was the number on the scale this morning. I tried to resist, but hopped on anyway. It was 166.6. I haven't weighed this much (unless you count pregnancy) in 15 years or so.

I'm foundering around here at a loss. I don't want to "go on a diet". It has never, ever worked for me and somehow I don't think it's going to start working suddenly after 25 years of not working. I am allowing food to control me -- perhaps because I don't have faith in myself. After all, I've never been able to leave sweets alone unless I was in the "weight loss zone" and invincible to all temptation. So why should I be able to now? Yet, I can't make the solution to never be around tempting food. That's giving food way too much power and I can't live my life that way. I refuse to live constantly obsessing about what I've eaten and when, when and what I'm going to eat next, and whether or not I ate too much. I refuse to stress over going out to eat, or to a party, or on vacation, or anywhere I can't control what is served. That is a completely ridiculous way to live.

Gillian Riley says that you need to focus on eating non-addictively for reasons other than losing weight. Losing weight is an external thing -- you really want to do it to please others. You sacrifice your desires to please others. So you lose your motivation as you lose weight and your motivation is dependent on how others are treating you. If they let you down, the thing to do for yourself will be to return to addictive eating to soothe yourself. To make lasting change you need to find more pleasure in controlling your eating than in overeating. You need to concentrate on building your self esteem by making your eating healthy for non-weight related reasons. So she said to make a list of non-weight loss related reasons you want to stop eating addictively, a list of what it costs you to eat addictively, and a list of what will happen if you take 5% more responsibility for your eating -- all non weight related. Boy, was that hard!

My list of what it means to be in control:
--feel lighter & less weighed down by being too full
--lower cholesterol
--less knee pain
--easier and freer to move
--more energy
--no indigestion or "stuffed" feeling
--feel strong and successful
--feel honest

what it costs to be out of control:
--feel heavy
--knee stress and pain
--high cholesterol
--feel cranky
--avoid social situations
--"afraid" of food
--stuffed feeling
--feelings of failure
--feel weak
--feel sneaky
--yucky "ate too much sugar" mouth taste

If I take 5% more responsibility for my eating:
--I won't mindlessly eat one chip here and one chip there
--I won't feel out of control
--I will feel strong
--I won't obsess about what I eat
--I will stop eating when satisfied
--I will choose NOT to eat sometimes
--I won't eat when I'm not hungry

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