4.21.2010

What is your biggest weak spot?

Okay.
I started writing this because this is HOW i have lost my weight...You can take or leave any of this...it's what worked for me...
So, once you have identified what you are good at..
Now, you identify your weak spot.
To win the weight loss war, this is key (or was for me_.
The key to losing weight forever.
This is the thing that sabotages you every.single.time.you.try.to lose weight... 
This may seem simple on the surface.
Say...you like food.
alot.
lol.
Now, you might like food...but not enough to eat yourself sick.
But you eat yourself sick anyways.
I used to.
I was past full and I would still be eating.
Then you get to...
"Well, I am an emotional eater".
Great, that is a bit closer.
YOu know you eat when you are happy..or sad....or angry...or confused...or lonely...
That's great.
But now comes the hard part.
A.) What is triggering the emotions?
B.) Why are you using food?
C.) How can you stop?

So, maybe it's just habit formed over many years to use food for comfort or celebration.
That can be hard to kick.
Harder, maybe your fat is doing something for you above and beyond the food.
If that is the case...You have some detective work to do.
I really don't think people get to the 'morbidly obese' state without the fat serving some purpose.
We don't keep anything in our lives unless it serves some sort of purpose..that includes our fat.
So, we have tracked down that we eat emotionally, that we have triggers...
Find out what those triggers are.
Is it when you have a conflict with a  spouse?
Is it when you are feeling unsure about the future?
Is it when you are facing increased expectations at work?
Is it right after talking to your family about your childhood...or after dealing with your parents, or siblings or a particular friend?
I know I used to do so well when my husband was away or deployed.
When he came home, I would eat eat eat.
We would have conflict and I would get very uncertain..
To take away that feeling I would eat it.
I would feel better momentarily.
Now, For a while I was convinced it was HIM.
It wasn't.
It was my reaction to him based on fear of abandonment left over from my childhood.
I was very afraid of being left.
So when we would argue, I would have this huge amount of anxiety.
I would eat to cover it or not feel it.
If I got angry I would eat to soothe myself because I didn't want to express it.
The first step to overcoming this is simple, and quick (and really hard).
You have to stop eating...
Set a calorie cap and before long, all your emotions will be right there...in your chest.
Where  you will be tempted to eat them.
Don't.
Identify them.
Sort through them.
Start asking yourself...
Good brother, why am I SO ANGRY!
WHY AM I SO FRIGHTENED?
WHY AM I SO LONELY?
You may know why..or not...
Then you have a choice...stuff it down with food, or sort it through.
If you sort it through, and this is based on my personal experience..you need to deal with IT.
whatever IT is...
Before you can ever get to the food part...this has to be dealt with or you will lose it and then when 'inspiration' or determination runs out...so does  your 'new lifestyle'.
I have started many diets.
I would go strong for a few months...my 'inspiration' would wither...
Usually coinciding with my triggers hubby's return
Nobody can live their lives with that much anger, or disappointment, or loneliness or sadness...
You need to 'fix' it.
Either face the problem (I had letters to write, people to confront and boundaries to draw.) sometimes there is a toxic relationship to end. Sometimes it requires forgiveness. It may require you to make new friends and find some hobbies... or in regards to disappointment, you do what it takes to overcome it.
If its low self esteem, then know that keeping that negative tape that was recorded either by you, or someone else...will continue to hold you back until your record a new inner tape. 
Just because someone at some point had a negative opinion of your worth as a human being...doesn't mean you need to accept the validity of their opinion. They are one person. I don't care if they were your parent...if they were saint frickin francis of assissi...
It's still One Persons Opinion.
and opinions are like @ssholes.
It isn't what they think, it's what you know.
If you don't know yourself..now would be a good time to write down things that are great about you.
Say only positive things to  yourself.
If you have things you need to improve...calling yourself dumb, or fat-so, or idiot or moron or other things will not help you improve...it will keep you stuck.
If  you have issues that you don't deal with, they won't go away.
They will keep on coming back until you deal with them.
It sucks all the energy out of any momentum  you might have gained.
I call it my "bring it up and kill it" philosophy.
Like my fear of men, I had to do what it took to take my power back.
So...identify your biggest weakness...and make a plan of attack to start conquering it..
this is a long process.
That is why I think developing one positive, consistent habit through this period can really help you build momentum. Once you start dealing with the things standing in the way of progress, you will start feeling more capable of handling the crap life throws at you on a daily basis regarding your weight loss struggles.
If you know how your brain will respond in certain situations,you can head alot of crap off at the pass.

Tomorrow, I will deal with what to do if you are using your fat as a tool.


Have a great night..
Last night I did my workout...an hour on the elliptical and my situps and my weights.
tonight I did my 5.6 mile hike.
My calories are in under 1500.
Hope you all are doing good,
hugs,
Chris

20 comments:

✯FiTCETERA✯ said...

Another insightful and inspiring post, Chris.
You've done so well at getting to the nugget of this thing.
My word ver tonight is "shero" can you believe that? Isn't that great? :)

Laura said...

Very timely for me. I've just been struggling with this issue and then of course, ate a bunch of my emotions this afternoon. Thanks for sharing your point of view :)

Mrs. Happy Pants said...

Well.
I'm especially enjoying these posts.
At any rate, I am there. I've been "not using" and watching to see what's hunger and what's a "craving" (and treating it as such) on a pretty consistent basis lately. Like for 4 months. And of course, bam. Those fun feelings. You seem to be on the same mental track as I am lately. Now if I can get down to your hot ass size...:-)

Kim said...

Yeah, I'm with the lady above me...you're on my same mental track too. I quoted your last blog post in my previous post. Gosh, you help me so. I'm hoping this next step I take will be the one that gets me out of this funk and I'm hoping that my little revelation is going to be key. Thanks for your posts...so thought provoking. :)

MargieAnne said...

Great post. I wish everyone who is struggling would read your whole Journal, from start to now.

You have a way of writing that cuts to the heart and helped me to face a few demons that I was sure were in the past. Life can be like an onion peel with layer after layer but once the initial skinning is done it's a lot easier from there.

There's nothing like serious weight loss to expose the #$%&&*&^% in our lives. I couldn't agree more that every person who becomes morbidly obese is using their fat to hide something and their weight loss efforts will never be completely successful until they begin to deal with whatever they are trying to hide.

I'm so glad you decided to journal on-line.

AJ said...

I sincerly enjoyed this as my GF said I would. I know that alot of weight issues can be linked directly to emotional consuming. I for one thought that is what it was for me.

oddly enough though, after some soul searching found that it was more a comfortability for me. I grew up in a lard and butter home. Fried foods, mashed 'tatoes or something closely related to it and collored greens in lots o' butter.

Veggies was a bad word in my house when I was a kid. Three cups of mashed potatoes and a 16 oz steak or a fried half chicken was NORAML in my house. So it wasn't the emotion for me, it's when I found myself straying into a zone of food that was found to be in the proverbial "scary dark deep end of the pool" I would quickly go back to what I knew from my kiddie days so I wouldn't feel like I was doing something wrong.

It took quite a bit of cold sweats and restraint to reprogram myself. I now stay as far away from all that as I can. Even in those difficult family get togethers when there are 19 out of 20 people that will eat five punds of chicken slathered in bbq.

So as much as I understand emotional eating and the triggers for it....I know there are some even more deep seeded and sometimes very twisted reasons that people eat the way they do and as much as they do.

And I very much look forward to seeing your input on how people use their fat as a tool. Because I have seen it done and I still know people that do.

/cheers

Heather Coyle said...

Wow, you're good! Thanks for sharing. This is exactly what I need to do; deal with 'my stuff'.

Onewhocares said...

Yeah this is a really insightful post, thanks! I really identify with this - I eat my emotions, all of them, every single day. I'm a very emotional person! Just as I am trying not to let my emotions rule my behaviour, I need to stop them ruling my food intake too. I will certainly try to focus on what I'm good at and to look at what my weaknesses are.

I didn't comment before but congrats on reaching 100lbs lost - that's a special achievement - well done!

Rettakat said...

This is excellent! I agree with everything except one eensy point.

You said: "We don't keep anything in our lives unless it serves some sort of purpose..that includes our fat."

That may be true for some people. But for some of us it is not the FAT we want to keep, it was the FOOD.

The fat was just the unhappy byproduct of abusing food.

Example: if I abused cigarettes, you can't say I wanted to keep yellow teeth and bad breath in my life. No, I want the cigarettes. The other is the byproduct of abusing cigarettes.

I know some people like the buffering, protecting layer the fat gives them, some kind of protection. Lots of us don't relate to that. But we want to use the food as our drug of choice, and tagging along with that comes the byproduct of FAT.

We don't want the FAT... we want to feel better. So we eat. Then get fat. Then eat. Then get fatter. Then eat. Then... well, I know you know.

Just another perspective, another color in this multi-colored beast called Obesity.

Good post!
Loretta
=^..^=

Tammy said...

I love your insight Chris. Thanks for breaking it down and putting it out there for us....you're helping a lot more people that you even realize...and God knows we need the help, lol. You're the best. :)

Helen said...

Another insightful post Chris.

I'm definitely a food is my habit girl. I have spent a lifetime using it for varied things: relaxation, celebration, depression, etc. I have to become very, very aware, especially right when I walk through the door after work. Otherwise I find myself just grabbing a handful of this or that. But those handfulls add up you know?

Splurgie said...

Great post! I really liked the idea of "bring it up again and kill it." Squashing our feeling doesn't work!

The_Exquisite_Christine said...

Great post. Hope you don't mind me printing it out. ((hugs))

bbubblyb said...

Great post Chris!!!

Roxie said...

Should be required reading for each of us who thought that our problem was our weight. If we could just lose the weight, things would be so much better.

Great post, Chris.

Putz said...

you know pople so well chris, do you get paid lots and lots of money to get the insights you do on us and then carefully teach us how to live?????????are you one of those professionalls who know so much and then go on in their{my} lives to be our special trainer and confidant , who have it made and then want us to have it made also??????one of those??????

BEE said...

great post very insightful

Bloodwell said...

Nice post. You're really good at putting your emotions into them. Have an Ok day.

Sandy said...

Thank you Chris, for helping us through this! To know you've been there and got through it, makes me feel so much less alone!

Linda Pressman said...

Chris,
I can't believe I'm days late on this post. Glad I didn't miss it completely!

Well, with this one post I think you've completely worked a 12-step program for weight! Truly amazing insights about going deeper and deeper, working out resentments and getting to the point of forgiveness. It's pretty powerful stuff.

Thanks.