I spent last night having a look over some of my old blog posts…I was in the mood for reminiscing!
I wrote a post in July last year in which I was trying to explain my fears regarding my old food habits.
Mr WLB and I had spent a couple of hours back then discussing the concept of ‘normal’. ‘Normal’ is one of those elusive words for me – on a par with ‘average’…what exactly is normal and what exactly is average? Whilst I understand the dictionary definitions I don’t think that I have ever seen a normal or average anything!
We were referencing food when we discussed normal – no surprise that it was about food I guess?! This was prompted by a comment on a blog post from a friend, who said that she could now eat off plan occasionally and eat like ‘normal’ people. I began to wonder if I could ever hope to eat like a normal person – considering that I reached over 43st, is it too much to ask to ever be able to eat normally? Will I ever be able to loosen up and let my control slip a little? Or should I just accept that if I want the kind of life that I do, then control needs to be part of that? Maybe the way I eat now is normal for me?
Mr WLB argued that of course I could loosen up every now and then. He feels that my guilt over food is pointless, and that if I want a bowl of ice cream after dinner, then I should be able to have this without a concern. However, as I mentioned in last years blog post, for me this would be the equivalent of offering an alcoholic a drink, or a drug addict a hit. This may sound dramatic, so I tried to explain it to him – he has lived with me for over twelve years now and has seen me at my worst, yet still doesn’t quite grasp the importance of my current food control. Which is another tick in box for getting help from people who have ‘been there’…as they do grasp this kind of thing!
Have any of you ever watched ‘Ghostbusters’? For those that have, you will remember the little box – or trap – that they used to shut the ghosts and ghouls in. It was a box with a top that opened and sucked them in! This box held some pretty powerful beings that were capable of wreaking all sorts of havoc and disruption. My ‘trap’ is the control that I have at the moment. That control takes many forms – attending group, going to the gym, writing my blog, updating my Facebook page, being accountable to a number of people, having the prospect of having to resort to surgery if I fail this time…so many little elements which culminate in me remaining in control.
Think about a time when you have watched a horse race, before the horse is on the home straight. If you watch the jockeys closely, you will see that they are really struggling to keep hold of the reins. The tension in them is visible – you can see the tautness of the rein, the angle of the jockeys arms, the pull of the bit in the horses mouth. When the jockey lets the horse have it’s head – or gives the reins up and allows it to really go…boy does the horse go!
For me, I worry that if I let the reins go or open that trap, the power of this would be like unleashing the ghouls or trying to stop a racehorse at a flat out gallop. I discussed how stupid this was with Mr WLB. I have said before that there is nothing wrong in eating a meal off plan and that the trick is just to put it behind you and move on…one meal out of the twenty one you have in a week is not going to jeopardise your weight loss campaign. And I stand by this – I discuss it with coaching clients – if I went off plan I would hope that I could pull myself back in time to refocus straight away. But hoping to pull myself back means that, for me, there is no ‘if’…I am doing my absolute best not to put myself in the way of temptation. For me, with the magnitude of the situation I was in, avoidance of certain types of food works for me.
However we all know that there is far more to weight loss than just the food!
What really bought home to me the fact that I am not ready to allow myself to eat off plan was the choices I would make. Mr WLB asked me last year what I would chose if I had tomorrow off plan – and here is the list that I gave him back then…
Breakfast: Double sausage egg McMuffin with hash brown and hot chocolate…if I am being honest, I would probably order two!
Lunch: Breakfast batch – known as a ‘Belly Buster’ – along with a pork and stuffing batch…complete with little pork scratchings.
Dinner: Chinese chicken and beef curry with egg fried rice, crispy squid, mini spring rolls and prawn crackers.
Evening snacks: McCoys multipack, six sausage rolls, family bag of peanut M&Ms, and a couple of scotch eggs.
This was the ‘menu’ I chose last year. Again, if I am being honest, I think I would find it hard not to choose this kind of food if I was allowed a ‘day off’. This goes back to my ‘all or nothing’ mentality.
I don’t know if this was my overly dramatic and shock-tactic response, yet uttering those words freaked me out – the thought of that food freaked me out…and still does. Would I really eat it? The fact that my mind took me to those foods though is scary. I am not having massive food cravings really. I don’t miss many of the old foods that I used to eat…I think about them, but I don’t miss them. Perhaps I would have the breakfast and feel so ill that I wouldn’t continue. Perhaps I would eat the lot and be ill for a few days. Perhaps I would eat the lot and get the taste for it again. Who knows? I just can’t take the risk – especially when the estimated calorie count for that lot is over 6000 calories excluding the Chinese meal…this equates to over 300 syns!
If I am being honest, I also uttered the words ‘Hotel Chocolat’ and ‘Bens Cookies’…and it wouldn’t have been just one cookie either! Although I have just found out that the Bens Cookies shop has closed…I am now concerned that my change in eating habits has put the poor buggers out of business!
I have no idea how I would really behave if I was given a day of freedom. I have an inkling that I would go wild with my choices – like a kid let loose in a sweet shop – yet make myself sick as a kid would do…and I don’t think that I would get past lunch! I remember Mr WLB dissolving into fits of laughter, and between his gasps for breath I could just make out him asking me where the superfree was in that lot…I do remember a bit of tomato and some mushroom on the Belly Busters that I used to eat…that counts surely?!
Seriously though, my food tastes have changed dramatically in the past couple of years. In last nights blog post I showed what I ate on that date a year ago…it was very different from what I ate 12 months on. Yet my honest to goodness choices would still be the same as a year ago…old habits die hard. I would love to think that if I woke up tomorrow, and decided to go and have food fun, that I would make better choices. But as there is no guarantee, I am not even going to go there.
I still have a long way to go – both mentally and physically. I am proud that I have managed to make the progress that I have to date, but my main focus is – and always will be – the head issues, as tackling these are absolutely crucial. I have managed to get over the ones that caused me to eat the way I did; I just need to work towards that elusive ‘normal’.
So today saw me tackle the hill climb challenge that my PT set for me. I can’t say that I was thrilled about it…especially given that Mr WLB had no idea of the route when the PT told me ‘he knows it’…and then we were accosted by a half-naked drunk man who decided some verbal ranting and slurring was in order. Once we got into it though, it was quite therapeutic. I decided that I would take the hill route circuit the trainer and I did the other day…and did it 5 times for good measure. It definitely covered the 5k. This was something that I could only have dreamt about doing at my biggest. The dog came with us…she is currently crashed out on the sofa…when we had done the second lap she wanted to head back to the car I think – but we all carried on going! I got very hot, very sweaty, very ratty – I am a shite exercise companion as I just want to focus on me…these group climb and group race things freak me out as I think people would disown me! As we headed back, the sprinkler systems were watering the football pitches and I couldn’t help but stand in it’s path…it was lush! Then we had the pleasure of the drunk man again, who was now in the gym car park being given a cup of water by a member of staff…he fell over with it before heading onto the main road…ignoring the offers of guidance. Mr WLB then went off to complete his ‘Tour de France’ challenge for the day – a quick 10k on the bike – whilst the dog and I took some water on board and relaxed. Then we headed to Morrison’s to spend our fruit and vegetable vouchers – and came out with this little haul…
…I got a graffiti and a white aubergine and am hoping to rustle something up with those tomorrow, and some raspberries and cherries. Mr WLB bought some bits and pieces to juice…beetroot, parsnips, asparagus, apples…it was a bargain too. We spent £3.86 and got £13.86′s worth of goodies! I was far too excited, but not as excited as I was when I spent a fortune on joint supplements this afternoon. What happened to spending money on Hotel Chocolat?!
This afternoon has been fairly relaxed. My Dad came round to help Mr WLB sort his new bike out. So we had a good catch up. I have done a bit of washing, completed a long old questionnaire, done some compassion-based work, and I am about to read a book and relax even further!
Today’s food has been lovely…
Breakfast: Banana and boiled eggs.
Lunch: Smoked salmon fillets with spinach, beetroot, spring onions, cherry tomatoes, and rye toast (2 x HEB).
Dinner: Spicy beef burgers with mushroom buns and cheese (2 x HEA) and roasted butternut squash and onion with rocket.
Snacks: Nakd bars (13 syns), cherries, and raspberries.
I have to say that the burgers were lovely! It was the first time that I have tried using those big field mushrooms as a ‘bun’…and although I kind of deconstructed it to eat it, it was really good!
Exercise: 5k hill walk.
Thank you for reading,
Weight Loss Bitch xxx