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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
1/1/20 12:23 A

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Day 100!!!!!!

Today, we're supposed to compile our top ten lessons, so this gets really long...

Day 1, "I Used to Be That Way..."
A really important day for me, and even more inspiring now, when I feel like I've lost some of that motivation... At any moment, I can decide, "I used to be that way, but now I'm different!" Your future starts whenever you say it does.

Day 5, Magic Notebook
The Magic Notebook is one of the more controversial lessons in 100 Days of Weight Loss, but it wound up being really helpful. I tweaked it in a way that works for me. When I feel the need to binge, I get out my phone and open up the Walmart Grocery app, and I fill my cart with anything and everything that I'm craving. It feels like I'm giving myself permission to eat all of those things. And then eventually, I delete them. Sometimes I delete them within the hour, sometimes it's the next day. Sometimes I delete all of the binge foods, and sometimes I allow myself an alternative or a smaller size. But this has really helped me a lot!

Day 26, When Food Disappoints You
I needed to re-read this. I've been eating way too many things lately that just aren't good enough. When food disappoints you... don't eat it!

Day 52, Food is an Instant Fix
I loved this lesson just because it made me feel seen and understood. I also gave myself some really good suggestions here that I had forgotten about!

Day 55, Food Is The Consolation Prize
Reading this lesson again, I get this visual in mind of a game show... "What do we have for our lucky contestant, Wink?! Door #1 is an active lifestyle full of hiking, biking, travel and swimming! And Door #2 is fast food!!!!" Like, who in their right mind would choose Door #2, right?!

Day 68, I Had a "Pause"
This was another lesson I really needed to read again... I have been using a lot of negative language lately about my holiday eating. Which is funny because going into the holidays, I felt like I was making a conscious decision to take a pause... Here at the end though, I'm just bloated and disappointed. So. Deep breath. I took a pause to celebrate the holidays with my family, and now that the festivities are wrapping up, I'm ready to press 'play' on my healthy lifestyle again! (Okay, that felt powerful. I don't have to 'start over.' I just have to pick up where I left off. Press PLAY again!)

Day 73, All-or-Nothing
Goes hand-in-hand with Day 68, in a way. It's all about progress, not perfection. Letting go of perfectionism has been a challenge this year, and I'm sure it'll be a challenge in 2020, too.

Day 79, Live as a "Healthy" Person
This was a fun day because I got to dream of life as truly healthy person. It was a great lesson on visualization and positive thinking.

Day 84, The Perfection Square
Yet another lesson I needed to be reminded of... Another skill to help let go of perfectionism.

Day 88, I Do Care!
For me, this was lesson was about the difference between "I don't wanna!" and "I do care!" It helped me for about a week, lol, and I need the constant reminder that I DO care about my life and my health!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


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LIFECHANGZ's Photo LIFECHANGZ Posts: 99
12/31/19 2:22 P

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"what is it that you really need?" this was such a huge skill that began to help me ~ when I realized to look for non-food things to deal with non-food things... and begins with asking, just what am I looking for and why... I can tell when it's an irrational urge to soothe/binge because nothing in my pantry/fridge looks good... the nourishing foods stocked and available... I get the urges for junk food... it's a big trigger/red flag for me, and is something I will continue to work on going forward ~ more practice getting real about what I really need and want...



emoticon Thank you for sharing the lessons and discussions here... it has helped inspire me on tough days... and helped me clarify my thinking.

emoticon Happy New Year! Here's to another year of progress with our hopes & dreams! Turning our can'ts into cans and taking our wishes into do's! SparkCheers :)



When the world says “Give up,” Hope whispers ‘Try it one more time.'


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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/30/19 9:39 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 99: It's Not In Here!

Really glad that today looks like a simple, straight-forward lesson and not one of those soul-searching ones...

Today's lesson is reminding yourself that when you're searching through a fridge, pantry, or looking for the nearest drive-thru... what you're *really* looking for isn't in there. Tell yourself, "it's not in here!" and use sticky notes if need be.

I do actually practice this fairly often. If I find myself rummaging around looking for a snack, sometimes (not all the time), I am able to ask myself, "what is it that you really need?" And then I'll do a little assessment. Am I thirsty? Am I upset or sad about something? Or am I truly hungry? If I am truly hungry, taking this pause helps me to choose something more nutritious than just snacking on whatever I can find.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/29/19 11:26 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 98: New Year's Resolution

More perfect timing! Today's lesson is to time travel one year into the future. Imagine you have achieved your goals and fill in the blanks. (I think the point of this is to write a positive self-fulfilling prophecy. Visualize your future success and make it come true!)

***
It's one year from now, and the date is: December 29, 2020.

I now weigh: 335 lbs.

My body feels: stronger and more capable, with more endurance and balance.

I'm exercising by: walking my dog, doing HASfit and DDPY yoga videos. I enjoy strength training and being more active in my lifestyle, too. I completed my first 5K in 2020!

I'm pleased with: so many things. I have more energy, and I'm in a smaller clothing size. I sleep better, and I have a much fuller life nowadays.

I've learned: how to better manage my stress and anxiety! I have learned more strategies for handling eating in tricky situations. I manage holidays with ease. I've learned more recipes, and I've got a new appreciation for the foods that make me feel my best.
***

Reading the list out loud makes me feel... hopeful and excited to start the new year!

The other task for today's lesson is to create a collage... But I just don't feel like it right now. I will try to get one done sometime this week though. I'm thinking about printing up that lesson and including it. That is *exactly* how I want to feel in one year's time.

Two more days to go!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/28/19 11:59 P

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I'M GOING TO DO IT! I'M GOING TO FINISH THIS BOOK IN 2019!

There are three more lessons in the book and three more days in 2019.

She could. Go. All. THE. WAAAAAAAAAAY!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/28/19 11:58 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 97: Use What Works

I feel like Linda Spangle designed this book to follow the calendar year almost... Because the last few days are very "getting ready for the new year" type things. Today's lesson is about thinking back on alllllll the things you've done to lose weight and seeing what you can still use.

This is a great lesson for me today. I am feeling really adrift lately, and I am longing for those like, two months in the fall where I felt really good and was losing weight quickly... So obviously, that's the first place I need to look.

Luckily, I keep data... And the first thing I see is that it was NOT "two months in the fall." It was mid-July through Thanksgiving! Wow, that's a lot longer than I thought it was! This gives me hope... Looking through my blogs, I had the same emotional ups and downs, but I feel like there was a definite shift in my self-talk.

Things That Work For Me
- Keto
- Bacon & Egg Fat Fast
- Intermittent Fasting
- Making one meal a salad every day
- Drinking 10+ cups of water
- Blogging
- 100 Days of Weight Loss
- Participating in teams
- Going to church
- Exercise. (It doesn't seem to make a difference one way or the other, really, but I want to try again, specifically focused on the stress relief aspect. I do like the feeling of accomplishment I get from having even a small streak of exercise days. And I like walking in nature.)

Today's lesson doesn't involve all those things that didn't work, and I like that. Stay focused on the things that DO work. Why waste time thinking/blogging about the stuff that doesn't? I can look at this list and it gives me a very broad roadmap back to wellness. So when I'm feeling ravenous and want to make a late night run through a drive-thru, I can look at this list and think, "Ohhhh, yeah... Now I remember how I did it!"

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/27/19 7:05 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 95: Set Your Intentions
100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 96: What Will It Take?

I'm combining these two days since 96 is just a continuation of 95, and I want to finish this book before the end of the year!

In Day 95, we rephrase our goals as an intention. "I intend to fast 16 hours a day."
And in both days, we learn to really pick apart at that intention and figure out exactly what it takes to accomplish it. It's like excuse-proofing your goal and plotting out every single little step we need to take.

I intend to fast 16 hours a day.
WWIT? Stop eating late in the evening and postpone eating in the afternoon.
WWIT? I could stop snacking after dinner and eliminate bedtime snacks.
WWIT? I could set an alarm on my phone to remind myself to stop eating, and I could make that an evening tea time instead.
WWIT? Set the actual alarm...
WWIT? Do it now!
Is there anything else I could do to help me accomplish this task? Yes!
WWIT? Eating dinner at around the same time every evening!
WWIT? Planning meals and knowing when to start cooking.
WWIT? Setting another alarm.
WWIT? Set the actual alarm...
WWIT? Do it now!

So I now have two additional alarms on my phone. At 6PM, it will remind me to cook dinner. At 8PM, it will remind me that it's "Tea Time."

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/13/19 9:08 P

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I completed Day 92 today, but it was insanely long, so I left it over on my blog. My page is set to private. I'm pretty sure I've added everyone who reads this as a friend, but if I missed you, please message me, and I'll add you.

Hope everyone is doing well! What do you want to read in 2020?

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/12/19 5:10 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 91: Obesity is a Condition

Today's lesson can be kind of a downer. The main point is, there is no finish line. We're never going to be "done." Even after we lose weight, even after we reach goal and we take all the fun comparison pictures... We will ALWAYS be susceptible to gaining the weight back. It doesn't just go away. We will always have to be vigilant. It is a condition, and we will always be at risk of this condition flaring up again.

That can be a really depressing thought, and it's one that I have struggled with for years. I've been dieting since junior high, and I've always had difficulty with changing my lifestyle. I'm only *just now* starting to be able to do those "lifestyle changes" things. I'm only on my second week of working out with any sort of regularity, and I almost feel like six minutes on a recumbent bike doesn't count, except that I can feel the difference it has made... I am just now getting comfortable with throwing away excess food at a restaurant. In the past week, I've thrown away french fries and left mashed potatoes on my plate. Six months ago, that was unthinkable for me.

In order to change your life, you have to... change your life.

The thing that I really like about today's lesson is that it de-personalizes it. It's better for my self-talk to think, "I have obesity" versus "I am obese." We don't personalize and "own" that many diseases and conditions. We do it with obesity and diabetes. "I am obese, I am diabetic." "Arthritic" is a word, but we say, "I have arthritis" and not "I am arthritic." Interestingly, we do "own" mental illnesses... "I am depressed, I am bipolar, I am schizophrenic." (Hmm. This is very interesting...) But my point is, we don't have to describe ourselves this way. We don't HAVE to "own" obesity (or mental illness, for that matter) any more than we own any other disorder.

I am not my illness, I am not my disorder. I am Mermaid, and I am everything that I said I was on Day 89. I have obesity, and I'm controlling it well. My numbers are improving every month.

Say THAT at your next doctor's appointment.

*mic drop*

MERMAID OUT.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/12/19 4:46 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 90: Live "As If"

I demand a refund. This day has absolutely nothing to do with the 1990's cinema classic, "Clueless."

Today's lesson uses our list from Day 89. When we're having an off-day, look back at that list, pick one of those great things about ourselves, and then live "as if" we actually felt like that way... I've had ample opportunity to practice this the past couple days. In typical Mermaid fashion, I'll have a couple outstanding days, and then I'll have a couple lousy days... I no longer beat myself up about this. I no longer hate myself for it. For whatever reasons, this is just how I am, so I try to just ride out the lousy days. It has been helpful to remind myself that just because I don't want to, that doesn't meant that I don't care... And it's useful to remember that some days, I really do have my act together!

My self-talk has transformed into something like, "Okay, it's gonna be one of THOSE days... It's alright. We're going to ride this out. Now, what would you be doing if you were feeling better? Can we do that today, even if we don't want to?" And sometimes, yes, I can! I've had a pretty decent track-record of getting on my exercise bike in the morning, and I can actually notice the difference.

Last night, I was bored. My fiance is still working overnight, so I feel like an awful lot of my time is spent just waiting for him to wake up... Normally, I would have spent the afternoon and evening on the couch, barely moving. But I asked myself, what would you do if you were really feeling on top of it...? So I got up, tried out a new workout DVD (hated it!) and then played a little bit of Wii Sports for the first time in like, seven years. Altogether, I got in an hour of activity yesterday! So yes, I'm calling this lesson very successful!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/8/19 8:44 P

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GRETCHEN! So great to hear from you! Please feel free to say a few words, no matter what day you're on. Just jump right in!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/8/19 8:43 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 87: Old Habits

This is a lesson that I have struggled with, and I know I will continue to struggle with it... But I'm trying to just think about it and move on to the next days because I don't want to get too hung up on it.

Today's lesson is about those times that we eat out of habit. Some of the solutions suggested in the book are really quite simple. If you know you eat as soon as you get home from work, even something as simple as entering your driveway from the other direction can throw off that routine in a good way.

My biggest, most harmful eating habit is that any time I'm with my mom, I eat, and usually overeat. I combated this during the holiday baking thing by wearing my best jeans. I was going to wear a set of Christmas cookie pajamas, but then I decided jeans were my best bet. I'm not sure how to handle this for every future visit though. I was also thinking about taking a selfie whenever my mom and I hang out, just something to small to show that we spent quality time together without having to eat. The problem is, it's just automatic to plan a food around whatever we're doing! This one is going to take years of practice, so I consider today's lesson complete... I have thought about it, I tried one technique, and I will definitely try more.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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4_MY_GIRLZ_N_ME's Photo 4_MY_GIRLZ_N_ME Posts: 1,347
12/8/19 5:15 P

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I'm continuing to work my way through 100 days. Today, I read day 78 which was about using positive language with ourselves. SO IMPORTANT!

~Gretchen

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Phil.4:13

EST





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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/5/19 6:37 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 86: Minimize the Damage

So appropriate for the holiday season!

I just spoke with a SparkFriend about this recently, too. Being a recovering binge eater, food addict, whatever you want to call it... Sometimes, I do feel the need to binge, and I try to counteract that with a controlled binge. I'll try to binge on something that won't make things worse. Like my big pot of vegetable soup, a bag of baby carrots, or choosing two bowls of pumpkin spice Cheerios over a pint of ice cream. Binge-eating is, of course, a harmful behavior. But this is a long journey, and we don't have to strive for perfection right away. "Better" is always an admirable goal. As we learn more and continue to prove, we can change "better." Since thinking about it this way, I've really felt a lot of relief. I just try to be "better." There are a lot of things I used to do that I don't anymore, and I celebrate that progress. I am thankful for how much I've learned and how much I've changed.

Ways to minimize the damage... Binge on more nutritious foods. When confronted with treats at holiday parties or cookies at the office, only allow the ones you really want. (No store-bought cookies for me.) If you take a bite of something and realize it's not what you wanted, throw it away. (Should have done this today with a cookie at work!) Try to balance your choices. If you're craving a soda terribly bad, maybe allow one can and one glass of water. (I used to do this when I had a burger in a restaurant. I'd order a Coke and a water, and I never let them refill my Coke.)

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
12/5/19 6:36 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 85: Let It Go

Unfortunately, today's lesson is not about Disney movies...

It's another lesson about handling your emotions. The idea is to write down what is bothering you on a small piece of paper, determine how long you're going to hold on to this annoyance, and then for that time, focus all of your negative energy on that problem, on that piece of paper. When the time is up, you throw the paper away, you let it go, and you move on.

I can see where this might work for small things. Someone who cut you off in traffic, a moment of social anxiety that haunts you, a schedule change, an annoying customer at work. But a lot of my stress and anxiety comes from big things, things that I can't let go of in five minutes... Then again, if I could learn to let go of the little things, it might make it easier to deal with the bigger things. One of the things I like about this activity is that it makes you ask yourself, how much of my time is this annoyance actually worth? Just thinking about it in that way is helpful!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
11/27/19 5:31 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 84: The Expectation Square

I have been thinking about this little technique for about a week now... The Expectation Square is about dealing with rigid viewpoints and expectations. For a control-freak perfectionist like me, this hits close to home. In our marriage counseling quiz, I scored low in "flexibility" and "open to change." This was not a surprise to me. I have a hard time accepting change and managing too-high expectations, and I have for as long as I can remember. (Which is hard on me, because I feel like my expectations and standards are terribly low. So it's even more disappointing when I, or others, fail to meet them.) This is a really great lesson for the holiday season, when our expectations and desires are so easily influenced by commercials, movies, memories, etc.

So what Spangle suggests is, visualize a small square fitting around the expectations of whatever situation. And then widen that square and ask yourself, "Could it be like this and still be okay?" I feel like this question serves two purposes. One, it helps you stretch your viewpoint and allow for things like reality... And two, it helps you figure out what is really NOT okay.

It's similar to one of the earliest lessons about the narrow path versus the wider path, but I feel like this can be applied to LIFE and not just food or dieting. I have been asking myself, "Could it be like this and still be okay?" frequently the past couple weeks, and I'm sure I'll continue using it. I'm planning a wedding, after all!

It's really hard for me to let go of perfectionism. I actually worked myself up into a good bit of beating myself up yesterday over some burned pies. I was convinced that I was an absolute failure, that I am literally not good at a single thing, and that I was just generally a waste of space. Over pies. PIES. Like, this was not life and death... This was maybe $7 of pie ingredients... I was still a little bummed about it this morning, and I told my dad not to expect anything great for dinner tonight... He said, "It's just like working on cars. We'll cut off the bad parts and slap some filler in it. It'll be fine." And he's totally right.

Small square: Perfect pies. Dutch apple and pumpkin. Cover of Martha Stewart magazine. Beautiful, epic homemade pies.
Large square: Pies with the burned parts cut off and covered with homemade whipped cream. Could it be like that, and still be okay? YES. Yes, it can.

Small square: I need to be perfect. I need to achieve all my goals. These are easy goals, and I should be able to accomplish them.
Large square: I manage to accomplish maybe 3 out of 10 goals. I berate myself and make myself feel awful. Can I be like this and still be okay? YES, because I am a work in progress. No, it is not okay to talk to myself poorly. But yes, I can be like this and still be okay because "progress not perfection" needs to be my new battle cry!

Wishing all of you a very happy Thanksgiving! Widen your expectation square. You miss out on a lot of great things when you're stuck in the blinders of perfectionism.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
11/17/19 5:50 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 83: No More Deprivation

I kinda like how Spangle titles these days because there's sometimes a twist on words that you don't always expect... Today is NOT about moderation or the "horrors" of deprivation. Today is about choosing your hard, choosing your deprivation, really choosing what you want from life. It's about accepting that deprivation and choices are part of life.

The timing of this lesson is again, pretty good for me... I think my recent struggles are strongly related to that feeling of deprivation and wanting to eat "what everybody else does." The exercises for today are to write a list of the ways your eating plan deprives you and then to write a list of what your weight deprives you of, and to compare those lists... I don't really want to do this activity because I don't want to dwell on the negative too much, but I do see the value of this lesson, so I will make short lists. Enough to do it, but not so much that I depress myself.

Things I'm deprived of because of my dieting efforts...
- Food, obviously. Cakes, cookies, chips, pies. Seasonal foods. Cocoa, apple cider. Greasy fast food. Pizza.
- Convenience. I dislike having a limited number of restaurants to choose from, and it's annoying that I have to make something special for things like book club. (We used to just order pizza or Chinese, and now, I have to either make the whole meal myself, or bring my own food, and watch everyone else eat something that I'd rather be having.)

Things I'm deprived of because of my weight...
- So. Much. I don't want to make a huge list because it will start to feel overwhelming.
- Any event in a stadium, arena, or auditorium. Concerts, sporting events, plays, ballets, etc. I miss that kinda stuff so much. Like, me at a hockey game or Nine Inch Nails concert is my truest self, and I haven't been in over ten years!
- Better employment. I love my job, and I'm really grateful for it. But I am missing out on things like financial freedom (mo' hours, mo' money), benefits, etc. I'm just not healthy enough and I don't have the physical endurance to work more hours.

Yeah... When I compare the lists, it's a no-brainer. No cupcake is worth my bigger overall life. But I do appreciate just writing out and acknowledging that yes, sometimes dieting sucks. There are things that you miss out on. It's okay to be annoyed about being deprived of something. That's a totally legitimate feeling. But you have to keep the big picture in mind, and you have to choose what you really want to be deprived of, ultimately.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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CELTLADYMN's Photo CELTLADYMN SparkPoints: (8,894)
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11/14/19 3:39 P

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Jumping back in where I left off!

Day 16 Nurturing power of food
~As you know, the first two bites of any food have the most impact on your taste buds.
But they’re also the only ones that have any emotional power! Once you finish those first
bites, you’ll have received whatever benefits the food can do for you. Eating more of it
simply won’t bring you additional satisfaction or make you feel any better.

Today
• Intentionally eat something that will help you feel better. Eliminate any thoughts
of guilt or remorse as you eat this food. Write down what you ate and why you
chose it.
---I chose leftover ham/cheese/hashbrown casserole.

• After two bites, stop! Remind yourself that your needs have been met and eating
more of the food won’t increase your healing level. Then give away or toss
whatever food is left. Describe what you did with this part of the food.
--Knowing I wanted to do this exercise, I packed a VERY small serving of the leftovers & brought it to work with me. It felt good to savor the flavors of the food (salty, comforting, creamy)

• Write about how you felt doing this exercise. Also, notice what level of
satisfaction you experienced as you ate the first two bites of the food.
--I really wanted to bring a BIG container of the leftovers, but packed that up for hubby instead. I brought a small (2-bite) serving and a HUGE salad for my lunch.

I felt IN CONTROL, which is a very empowering feeling for me. I have spent so much of my adult life being controlled BY food...not using it as fuel, but as an attempted CURE for whatever might be ailing me. I'm ridiculously proud of myself when I actually use food to power my body, instead of as a drug. Today, the salad tasted great...very filling. The 2-bites of the casserole left me sated with the comfort food & feeling like I can manage my food intake by planning better.


2019 is my year to work on ME!

~Laura

2019 End of Year Challenge! (Goal: 339)
10/27: 351.6
11/03: 348.8
11/10: 347.6
11/17: 348.2
11/24: 346.6
12/01:
12/08:
12/15:
12/22:
12/29:
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11/11/19 9:36 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 82: Last-Straw Eating

This is another one of those lessons that feels like a repeat of the day before. But in church, our pastor says that when the same story or phrase gets repeated, it usually means to pay attention, so that's probably what's going on here... And I avoided doing this lesson because for the past few days, I've struggled, but I didn't hit that "last-straw" level. I struggled with making too many planned exceptions. (Too many special things, too many treats. I want to allow these things in my life, but I probably had too many, and the specialness of some things could be debated...) Anyway, last night, I did hit that "last straw" feeling, and while it wasn't a binge, it was pretty damn close.


So, let's CSI this crime scene...

I went over to my mother's. Let's be honest here. My mother's house is a massive food trigger for me. She keeps snacks, drinks, all sorts of stuff. Sigh. And sometimes, it's "legal" food, but oftentimes, it isn't. So, there was definitely opportunity. Ample opportunity.

I should have eaten before I went over there. I had eaten a couple hours before, so I wasn't really hungry enough to have a meal before I went, but after being there for awhile... Yeah, I was hungry. Aha! Motive!

But what else? What else drove me to eat the way I did?

Well... A few other less-than-great choices made in the days prior. It's always easier to stay on track when you're in that groove.

I was cranky when I went over.

I really hate my fiance's job.

I'm stressed about wedding planning and a suddenly expanding guest list.

So... This again, all points to stress management and time management. Nothing new here, really... But it feels good to blog it out. I guess that's all I'm really looking for with today's lesson. I need to try to identify these frustrations before they multiply, and I need to handle stress in productive ways. And for me, blogging is one of the best ways to do that, so I just need to type out my feelings, no matter how whiny and annoying I may sound! Ha!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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emoticon nods, I agree, a profoundly helpful skill ~ at any point we can break the chain and make a choice and head towards a different outcome! Well done :)



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10/31/19 1:16 P

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*Another really long one. Sorry!

100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 81: Unhook the Chains

Today's lesson is about figuring out what really causes our over-eating by looking at all steps of the behavioral chain. It helps us to examine what *really* set us off. It's a more beneficial way of figuring out what we could have done better.

This is good timing... I was making some Halloween treats last night for our church's cake walk tonight, and I wound up eating a lot more candy than I had originally planned to allow. It wasn't a full binge, but it was more than I wanted. Examining the chain of events, I can identify several things that caused me to allow more candy than I intended, and I can see things I could have done better. I really like this process. It's a form of constructive criticism and not just beating yourself up for not doing better.

Going to work backwards and try to type this in a way that makes sense...

Eating too much candy.
^
Buying too much candy AND being hungry
^
Baking fail caused stress.
^
Already a little stressed because sink full of dishes from making a more complicated meal this evening.
^
Fiance spending too much time on computer/phone.

Okay, there's my chain. Now I'm going to copy/paste it and add ways I could have improved the situation...

Eating too much candy. (Fixing anything in this chain would have helped me to eat less candy. The desirable candy wouldn't have even been in my house! And if I had managed my stress better and eaten more at dinner, I wouldn't have been as hungry or agitated. I could have stayed better hydrated, too!)
^
Buying too much candy AND being hungry (After the fail, I sent Fiance to the store to pick up more ingredients to try to fix it. They didn't work either, and then there was additional candy in my house, desirable seasonable candy.) (I didn't eat enough at dinner. I should have eaten just a little more.) (Made Ina Garten's roasted chicken last night, but I didn't plan enough vegetables. A salad would have worked.)
^
Baking fail caused stress. (Don't. Trust. Pinterest.) (But seriously. Plan something simpler, read all the packages and directions, and when in doubt: do something easy from my repertoire of tried and true recipes. It's a Halloween cake walk. Kids don't care about new and different. I could have easily done cake mix cookies or a couple 8x8 pans of cake from a box. They would not have cared. And it would have been cheaper!) (Could have taken a short walk, gotten on exercise bike, or meditated for a few minutes to manage stress.)
^
Already a little stressed because sink full of dishes from making a more complicated meal this evening. (Could have planned an easier meal! Would have been a great night to go out or pick up something easy from the grocery store.)
^
Fiance spending too much time on computer/phone. (This is something we're trying to handle better. I don't need to monopolize his every waking hour. He should be allowed his own free time. My free time happens to be when he his either asleep or at work. I shouldn't feel resentful when I'm doing chores and he's on the computer. That's just how our schedules work. We can fix this by managing our time better. We can make our together time more meaningful and plan his free time better, so that I don't feel ignored or resentful. A little more structure would help.)

Okay. I hope that wasn't too difficult to decipher; it really did help me figure everything out! Like, I just now realized that I don't handle my stress on an as-needed basis. I handle stress by letting it pile up until I HAVE to handle it. But I don't do anything to handle daily stress.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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10/25/19 5:25 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 80: Get a New Title

Ohhhhhh, snap, y'all! Today is a good one. I've been thinking about this all week, and I finally feel like today is a good day to tackle it. In today's lesson, we... give ourselves a new title! We no longer use the words we used to use to describe ourselves; we eliminate that old, negative job description that we used to have.

The tasks for today are: give yourself a new "name tag" and then to also pick a word to describe yourself that can be like a goal... So you can use it to help yourself stay on track, like, "How would a 'healthy' Mermaid handle this situation?" It's suggested to create a list of several positive words to describe yourself, and then just pick one or two that you'll be comfortable using long-term.

Name Tag: Mermaid, A Strong Woman.
I chose "A Strong Woman" because in encompasses so much that I want to be. Yes, I want to be physically strong and capable, but I also want to be emotionally strong and resilient. I want to be strong in my faith, my values, and I want to be a steadfast wife, daughter and friend. I want people to hear my name and think, "oh, yeah, Mermaid can handle it!"

Goal Word: Healthy.
I chose "healthy" because that, too, encompasses a lot of areas for me, and it's my ultimate goal. I want to handle my emotions and problems in healthy ways. I want to eat healthy foods. I want to have healthy attitudes towards myself and my life.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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10/23/19 4:50 P

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That is AWESOME, Laura! emoticon emoticon

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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408
394
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10/23/19 2:16 P

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100 Days...Day 15 First two bites



~With any food that you love, eat the first two bites very slowly, noticing details such as the cinnamon in the apple pie or the soft caramel swirl in the cheesecake. Allow yourself to completely absorb the texture and flavor of the food. After you finish those two bites, decide if you truly need more. In most cases, you don’t.



Today

• Choose one of your favorite foods such as carrot cake, and then focus on all the details and tastes of the first two bites. Let yourself appreciate the flavors. Write down the food you choose for this exercise.

• After the first two bites, stop eating and get rid of the rest of the food. In the space below, describe your response to this experience.

• With each food you eat today, pay close attention to the first two bites. Notice how they taste in comparison to the rest of the food. Write a few notes below



It's been a long time since I've worked my days, but I'm glad to be back.



The timing on this one was great.  I'm off work today, but had to run into the office for a few minutes.

I drove thru McD's and got a cheeseburger & small fries.  The fries smelled awesome.  Luckily, I read this daily thought before I started eating.  I had TWO BITES of fries...the salty, greasy yummy.  But, I know if I eat the whole things (even a small one), my tummy will rebel.  So, I savored the yummy decadence & threw the rest of it in the trash.



VICTORY!

2019 is my year to work on ME!

~Laura

2019 End of Year Challenge! (Goal: 339)
10/27: 351.6
11/03: 348.8
11/10: 347.6
11/17: 348.2
11/24: 346.6
12/01:
12/08:
12/15:
12/22:
12/29:
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10/18/19 4:47 P

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emoticon very thoughtful heartfelt dreams! wonderful :)

the 1st one on food was particularly important epiphany for me as well... food for nourishment and not to solve non-food reasons... it is taking way more practice to develop that than I ever anticipated... and I think Spangle's thought is important... what is normal anyways? I like the idea of healthful... my life/needs are entirely different than the few people who I perceive to have a normal eating approach/relationship to food... we could be from different planets... so along the way, decided, I just need to start where I am, go from there towards better/good for me... and as I keep practicing, this evolves with progress...

emoticon Mermaid, methinks you are also evolving with progress... and appreciate the thoughts you share... gives me a chance to (re)visit the ideas again, and so often find myself nodding along, sometimes with new little epiphanies of my own ;)

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10/16/19 1:33 P

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This got really long when I blogged about it, so I'll try to trim this down a little...

100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 79: Live as a "Healthy" Person

So today is basically about learning the difference between "normal" and "healthy." I know I have struggled often with, "WHY can't I just be able to eat like a NORMAL PERSON?!" And Spangle points out... In today's society, where soooo many people are obese and diabetes is the norm... We don't really want to aim for "normal." Like, there really IS no NORMAL. Whatever idea we have of what "normal" is either doesn't exist anymore, or never really has. Our concept of "normal" isn't very informed. The alternative is HEALTHY, and we need to personalize that!

The exercise for today is to draw a stick figure of yourself and brainstorm/write out all of the things that look like a HEALTHY life for YOU. I took this seriously, and I really spent some time on it. (I even drew a stick figure version of my dog and my fiance, lol.) Around this simple stick figure depiction of my family, I have headings for several categories. Here are some highlights from each.

FOOD: I eat when I'm hungry, and I never ask food to do the job of anything else. Food is not my therapist, friend, or entertainment. I cook delicious, nutritious meals of vegetables, healthy fats, and healthy proteins.
STRESS MANAGEMENT: My first choice coping mechanisms are fitness, meditation/prayer, and creativity.
FITNESS: I can walk, explore, hike, and enjoy nature. I can learn to ride a bicycle and walk a 5k. I am not intimidated by stairs or full parking lots. My body is strong and capable.
WORK: I continue learning and working more hours, with a goal of finding suitable full time employment sometime in 2022.
FINANCIAL: We (because this is a marriage thing, too) continue budgeting and continue our financial education. After meeting our emergency savings goal, we strive to pay off credit card debt sometime in 2022.
PARENTS: Provide useful support and help to them, while maintaining proper boundaries. Don't get overwhelmed, and prioritize the friendship and enjoyment of the relationship with them.
SOCIAL: Work at maintaining current friendships by not being a flake! Go to more church events to expand social network.
HOME: Spend my energy to create an inviting, calming home. Organize, declutter, don't buy useless or disposable crap. Make home purchases with quality and longevity in mind. Make the most of what you've got.
MARRIAGE: Continue practicing effective communication! Make marriage a priority. Better health/fitness means more things to do, which equals a better quality of life for both of us!

I have had a quote on my bulletin board for months that goes well with today's lesson:

"Look closely at the present you are constructing. It should look like the future you are dreaming." - Alice Walker

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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10/13/19 9:27 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 78: Ditch the Critic

Today's lesson is about using a particular phrase to silence your inner critic and stop negative self talk.

"I don't care what you say or do to me, I am still a worthwhile person."

This is a good one for me today... Even though I planned to eat off my program, I am still feeling guilty for going beyond my pre-determined limits... I also know that I tend to binge eat AS a form of self-harm, so I particularly like the front part of this saying. No matter what I say to myself, no matter what I force myself to eat in order to hurt myself... I am STILL a worthwhile person. And this is still a worthwhile cause. I AM getting better.

In the book, Spangle says that when we put ourselves down, the brain attempts to make whatever we're saying true. I don't know if that's backed by any neurology or psychology, but it feels about right... It would be wonderful if I could rewire my brain through positive self-talk! It doesn't feel as unnatural to me as it used to. On most days, I can find nice things to say myself. It's not always the case, but it happens more often than it used to.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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10/9/19 8:21 P

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emoticon these last 2 days/lessons were helpful for me, especially first couple times I pondered them... as women, we often spend so much time caring for others, putting job 1st, needs of others... that it kind of actually felt guilty to make time for myself & self-care; to destress, to sit and enjoy a moment, 2 or more...

emoticon love the idea of sparkling water with furbaby outside! my shep used to blow bubbles in his waterbowl and loved to play in waves... it is easy to enjoy/laugh/smile at those times ~ and it helps to actually choose to make those moments as part of our daily self-care/routines ~ even teeth/face washing :)

I remember on airplanes - lemon scented warm washcloths... nothing quite like it!

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10/9/19 2:26 P

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emoticon
100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 77: The Healing Power of Rituals

Let's go ahead and knock out one more day, since it's a similar topic...

I love rituals as part of self-care, I just have a hard time sticking to them consistently. One of the things I've been doing lately is hand-washing my dishes at night, and then watching an episode of The Golden Girls. My dishwasher is kaput, and I'm actually not in a hurry to replace it! There's only two of us, so it doesn't get too bad, and I find that I enjoy the peace of it. I usually listen to some soft jazz, easy listening, or old vocal standards. I put my dishes on the draining rack, and then I turn on some Golden Girls before going to bed.

I also have the same basic routine for going to bed and getting up in the morning. Brush hair, brush teeth, wash face. The skin care routine changes up for AM and PM, but the basics apply. I'm a bit embarrassed to admit that I'm brushing my teeth more regularly than I ever have in my life... But this little ritual is serving me well. During periods of depression, hygeine is the first thing to go for me, and I feel like keeping this up has helped keep me from slipping. Like, for me, just going to bed without washing my face can encourage a slip into depression, and the more little things I don't do for myself like that, the worse it gets. One day it's not washing my face, then it's not brushing my teeth, then it's not being able to get out of bed and go to work... It's a slippery slope, and little rituals help me.

One of my favorite rituals, I've blogged about before: I love getting home in the afternoon, grabbing a can of sparkling water, and sitting in my yard with my dog. He's such a good boy.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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10/9/19 2:26 P

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emoticon
100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 76: Emotional Safety

Sometimes, I come across a day in this book that either trips me up or doesn't speak to me, and instead of just trying to knock it out, I put it off for a week... Which is exactly what happened with Day 76...

Today is about creating an emotionally safe place in your environment, somewhere you can go when things get icky. It doesn't have to be anything big. It can be a room, a corner, or something even as small as a special coffee cup, or a certain CD to listen to in the car. I think I struggled with this day because it's something I already do so much of! From having migraines so often, I've tailored a lot of things in my life for comfort and safety. I have blackout curtains on every single window, I use aromatherapy, I listen to soothing music. Most recently, and inspired my Marie Kondo, my bedside area is designed to bring me comfort and spark joy. I have a few special knick-knacks, a Himalayan salt lamp, a special dish for my engagement ring, and my current books. I have a special Snoopy cup. I try my best to make my home a safe haven. Now, if I could just keep it clean and de-cluttered...

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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9/27/19 5:18 P

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emoticon like that song Mermaid

emoticon Laura, I hear that... my thoughts/mind turns often to food ~ whenever I am mad, sad, bad, glad.... things like this study help us work on it! even if we go slowly with it...

emoticon several events this week triggered stress and strong emotions for me, and that is when self-care and food choices get wonky and I struggle. so this weekend, I am focused on r&r (rest & recovery) including limiting real world news and adding miles of smiles



I have found that my mood often follows and intensifies where my thoughts dwell, so I am working on actively re-directing my thoughts to happy and positive. once, when I was listening to a Dr Laura broadcast, a caller mentioned she was hyper-focused on something (for example a particular food)…

dr Laura said... hey! look! see the pink elephant over there?

bet you looked? right? she went on to say that your mind switches to the pink elephant and can't stay dwelled on the fixation... and although I find my brain reverts to the negative thing... very actively... I sometimes have to get up and totally change what I am doing... after the negative news, I was trying to concentrate on something I was watching and my thoughts kept going to the negative news... so I got up and did something totally else/active to focus on... in this case it was go talk about it with someone... which helped because I expressed my emotions... but I noticed at dinner that I wanted to dive into the food. same with inbetween dinner and snack and inbetween snack and bedtime... and that wonky URGE and strong emotion has stayed with me, but is easing, like waves of the ocean on an outgoing tide...



so, this weekend, more re-directing my thoughts to something/anything that will help me laff!



Hope you all have a good weekend, I will be playing with pink elephants :)



Edited by: CHANGZWALK at: 9/27/2019 (17:25)
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9/23/19 12:48 P

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I can't believe it's been more than a month since I've done a "DAY". In the past, I know I would have given up & beaten myself up for once again quitting on something I committed to following.

Instead, I read all your posts in between & am ready to pick up where I left off.

PLEASE know that your posts are very helpful to me & I often find myself nodding along with things you've written. Even though we are all walking this path for ourselves, it is always great to realize that someone else out there gets it. I don't think any of us got to be this size by practicing self-care & kindness to ourselves. I have a lot of self-hatred and shame bubbling under the surface & ready to pop out at the slightest provocation!

Day 14~~Morning affects evening

If you eat breakfast every day, you’ll eventually retrain your stomach to manage food
better in the mornings. It may take time for your body to adjust, but after a week on your
new schedule, your all-day hunger will disappear. You also may need to evaluate the
timing of your fuel stops and begin eating more often.

This isn't really an issue for me. I generally wake up hungry & 99% of the days, I start with a healthy breakfast. The rest of the day...not so much! I rarely feel actual physical hunger, but my mind messes with me that I "need" food, when I don't actually.

An easy "DAY" to get my head back in the game!

2019 is my year to work on ME!

~Laura

2019 End of Year Challenge! (Goal: 339)
10/27: 351.6
11/03: 348.8
11/10: 347.6
11/17: 348.2
11/24: 346.6
12/01:
12/08:
12/15:
12/22:
12/29:
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9/20/19 5:29 P

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emoticon empowering :)



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9/19/19 7:50 P

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www.youtube.com/watch?v=wh1ZJ8OYpLQ

This song helped me get through a particularly bad depression. I listened to it every single day on my way to work. I have a hard time listening to it now because it just belongs in 2014 for me... But I am extremely grateful for it.

Edited by: MERMAIDLIFE at: 9/19/2019 (19:55)
2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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emoticon I have found this to be life-changing and profoundly helpful...

when I 1st tried, I felt silly/childish... I bought some pretty sparkly stickers & colored pens to keep track of days I exercised, if I tracked (at all) and if I accomplished other little things like not eating between meals - which was a process/practice that helped me release bingeing... (and realized when I was struggling - like middle of the night or with strong negative emotions or when I did paperwork/paid bills/etc...) at 1st, it was like 1 sticker is cool... eventually, thought, i'd like to see more days than not this week and ok if not... it gave me permission to goof up but also helped me realize I was beating myself up with wet noodles for anythings I perceived as bad... instead of recognizing that I do way more right than wrong... 1 tears down self-esteem... the other restores and strengthens it and self-confidence.... 1 sends us to a hole to weep, the other to meet & greet the day and get on with life... it is something we claim when we say hey! I done did good! I am a good person. I have the right to live, breathe, smile and be happy! Let's get on with it!

I hope you find it helps too Mermaid!

back when biggest loser started, there was that song by Heather Small ~ what have you done today to make yourself proud? (London version) Not in a selfish/vain/obnoxious way... but how have you helped yourself today... it is truly a different perspective in how we view ourselves... do we take up criticisms where others leave off or do we become our own helper!

www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEoxGJ79PMs



emoticon I also like Hero

www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntuqTuc6HxM



Edited by: CHANGZWALK at: 9/18/2019 (16:08)
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9/18/19 2:56 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 75: Small Wins

Today's lesson is about taking the previous one (about finding rainbows) and making it personal. We're supposed to be looking for "small wins." It can include all the positive things we do to stay on track in our diets and healthy lifestyles, and it can also include all the nice things we do that just make the world a better place. The point of the lesson is to give ourselves credit for the efforts we make, while also helping us balance out those crappy things in our day. Basically... Accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative...

The little task for today is to keep a list of these small wins and let them accumulate. At the end of the day, read the list before bed, and declare yourself to be a great success! It's kinda like a self-gratitude journal. I have never kept a gratitude journal, not for any significant period of time, but it might be a good idea to start one... I can at least give it a week. My hope in keeping a self-gratitude journal would be to view myself less critically. My self-talk has greatly improved, but there is still work to be done. This lesson feels like a good next step in the process.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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emoticon & emoticon has helped me acknowledge the rain/thorns and see past to the petals & sunshine



this also has been difficult ~ to accept the ick... and be thankful it's not worse! I also adore having a washing machine in the home.... having too much food to eat (compared to starving with a distended belly) ~ to have people to share life with... including here, doing things like these readings, together with you :)

emoticon hope you're feeling better soonest Mermaid! emoticon

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9/14/19 6:04 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 74: Watch for Rainbows

Today's lesson is really about gratitude and appreciating the small moments of joy and happiness in our lives. When we are attuned to noticing these things, we're less likely to reach for food when those rough days strike.

For me, today has been another rough day... It has seemed like it has been weeks upon weeks that I have felt lousy. I checked my blogs. It has only been a full two weeks! I was sick with another migraine yesterday, and I woke up cranky again this morning. I was snappy with my fiance, and eventually, I just had a full-on breakdown, a big ol' cry. Then we ate lunch, watched some TV, and I made a list of things I needed to get done, and started checking them off... I feel outstandingly better.

My rainbows today... My fiance, obviously. That man is exceedingly kind and patient. Also, my front yard. I don't take care of it well enough, and it's not pretty. But it is shaded in the afternoon, and I have a bird feeder. I like to "crack open a cold one with my best bud" in the afternoons. That means: I like to enjoy a can of sparkling water when I take my dog outside... He sniffs around, I watch the sparrows at my bird feeder, and usually read the Bible or play a game on my phone. I am also grateful for my washer and dryer, right inside my home. I love being able to do laundry without leaving the house, and I love having my laundry area right inside. I'll be putting fresh sheets on my bed tonight, and I'm looking forward to that!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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CHANGZWALK's Photo CHANGZWALK Posts: 8,500
9/14/19 4:38 P

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emoticon day 72 sneak eating... nods... looking back, I can see how & when... usually in response to "restriction" imposed on me... so it is liberating to "reassure" myself that "I" (me, myself & I) can and will choose how, when, what, where & why to eat... I don't have to explain, defend or justify to any other person... it has helped to look my eating in the eye and be direct about the choices... the process helped me recognize some times/places/ways that were very/hard to break...

which leads me to

emoticon day 73, all - or nothing...

I rarely can do perfection... so I would whisper to myself... more practice! forget about the goofups, try more... and think of a person learning a complex dive or gymnastic skill... try. goof up. talk to coach about what happened and what to try next.. don't beat myself up... and go try again.

it helped... and... taking on this approach, helps me also recognize when sometimes it's like the wide/narrow road... different approaches at different times/needs :)

emoticon I do wish... what I know in my head would mean I conquered all these issues and no more problems or utter collapses and failures... I had a monumental struggle & collapse this year... is what it is... I tried, I struggled, I felt horrible, but... just means I need more practice! so I'm here... looking forward & trying more :)



emoticon emoticon emoticon next year, come January, I want to read Spangles next book 100 more days of weight loss... 3 chapters a week... that would go January though March. Would love to talk about it here :)



MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
9/12/19 1:08 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 73: All-or-Nothing

Today's lesson is about perfectionism! *cackles madly* Oh, this one hits close to home... It is definitely something I am working on this week! I am still struggling with my program, and it's super-aggravating. I just want the magic that I had a few weeks ago back. In the past, I would get more and more frustrated, blame it on the program, go completely off track for a few weeks, and then find a new program to try...

I am not doing that this time. I am choosing to do as Spangle suggests in the book: strive for excellence, not perfection. So while yes, I am struggling, and I'm not eating all of the correct things, I'm still eating about 90% of the correct things. I am drinking the correct amount of water about 5 out of 7 days of the week. I am participating in my Spark Teams. I am blogging. I am still doing most of the work of weight loss.

This gray area is kinda new to me. I don't really want to be here for long because I'm not losing weight, but it's not a terrible place to be. It's kinda like a clean gas station bathroom on a roadtrip... It's not where I want to spend all of my time, but it's pleasant enough...

The activities suggested for today's lesson are things like, "hang a picture crooked all day and see how it makes you feel." Lololololololol. Look, I can't do that, okay?! But I am learning to live with some imperfection. I am going with the ebb and flow, allowing myself some breathing room, and when I'm ready to kick it into high gear and take it the next level, I'll be ready. And I won't be undoing any damage! I'm avoiding the perfectionist guilt spiral that leads to bingeing, so I'm not causing myself any great harm. That's a big step for me!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
9/11/19 4:31 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 72: Sneak Eating

I definitely used to be guilty of "sneak eating." I made a rule awhile ago that I do not go through a drive-thru by myself. In fact, on the rare occasions that I go through a drive-thru at all anymore, I usually text my fiance about it. I text him what I'm going to order, and that gives me some accountability. Even though he's at work and he doesn't see what I'm actually ordering, I don't want to lie about it, so that does help keep me honest.

Eating in a restaurant usually keeps me on good behavior. I have some anxiety about eating in public, so I'll never go out to eat by myself, and I usually feel self-conscious about what I order and how I eat. I think this is good anxiety though. It's not so bad that it keeps me from going out, and it does help me make better choices.

I am most likely to want to sneak eat if it's a binge. I never full-out binge in front of anyone else. Oh, I'll overeat in front of my family, especially for holidays or the Super Bowl... But bingeing is a totally secret, totally self-punishing thing. In the book, Spangle mentions that sometimes, we can sneak eat as a way of getting back at someone else. But no, if I sneak eat, it's a binge, and the only person I'm intending to punish when I binge is me... A lot of times, that starts as self-soothing, but eventually, when I get disappointed in myself, it will turn into self-harm.

I do not generally sneak eat out of avoidance. Like, I don't sneak out to get away from the "diet police." I am lucky that I don't deal with that a lot. My fiance does a very good job of keeping me on program without being a jerk about it. He won't give in to my constant naggings about wanting fast food, and when I feel really awful, he has no problem cooking or suggesting a healthier alternative.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
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CHANGZWALK's Photo CHANGZWALK Posts: 8,500
9/9/19 2:40 P

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emoticon We can do hard! emoticon emoticon emoticon

life can be HARD. and way different than we thought it should be... live and learn, look forward, go live life!

emoticon 1 of the hardest things I managed to do was give up sickerettes, overcome the addiction. had to truly release it because it was hurting me... started in 1981... managed to quit, New Years Eve, 2005... so my quit date is 1/1/2006.... I am working on releasing the overeating with food. it is harder. can't go cold turkey with food... we have to eat enough... not too little... and it has been a learning process to figure out how to help myself with this... Spangle has helped me ponder various ideas... I have read and reread several times since 2008 and when I look back, I can see how my thinking has evolved as I try various ideas... and practice...

some things are no longer an issue... others remain tough.... 1 of the toughest is strong negative emotions/life events because I turn to food, out of habit... if I eat too many carbs, I re-ignite the appetite, and when that happens, stopping gets rough... like getting an alcoholic or drug addict to stop...

emoticon had an urge after a recent picture... day 6 trying again...

I wish I felt confident I wouldn't collapse/crash again... but I'm not going to fret the future, and am focused on today, this week... for now, want to treat it like a college tri-mester… see how my diabetes is in 12 weeks... if I can move better, then... It is hard to see, in a day or few but improves a bit every 5 or 10 lbs we lose... those are results... so will reassess in 12 weeks... and focus on daily/weekly activities, actions I can take and weekly results/markers until the 12 weeks ends (thinking it's about Thanksgiving time... which will be a good time for a Holiday plan/approach! Yum!!! LOL ;)

Onward...

Edited by: CHANGZWALK at: 9/9/2019 (14:42)
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/30/19 10:08 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 71: It's Too Hard!

Today's lesson acknowledges that yes, it's hard to lose weight, but it reassures us: we've done hard things before, and we can do them now!

Write down: I CAN DO HARD THINGS.

Describe some hard things you've done: Was a caregiver for my dad after his first major surgery, and for every hospitalization since. Got my GED. Applied to college, got in, went! Knew when to come home. Got divorced. Lost a couple jobs. Been through some personal health things. Learning a new, male-dominated trade. Have completed like, five Whole30s!

Tell yourself you can do hard things: Absolutely, I can! Very little in my life has been easy. Of all the hard things I've done, this one is relatively easy. I can stick to my plan, and I know I can stick to an exercise plan, when I'm ready. Will it be tough? Yes. But I am tougher! And I'm worth the effort.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/30/19 9:17 P

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Sometimes when I go back and re-read old blogs, I just cringe... I repeat myself *constantly.* But I try to remind myself: I'm not here to entertain anyone. And neither are you! We are not Netflix, lol. We are here to talk it out and work on our issues, and if we repeat ourselves and go around in circles... Well, that's just a lesson we need to keep learning!

I do feel like I have made some progress though. I have lost nearly forty pounds this year, and I'm starting to feel like I did the last time I lost forty pounds... And I am absolutely determined to not gain it back again! I have learned more from 100 Days of Weight Loss than I have ANY other diet book or program. I'm very happy to be reading this book alongside SparkFriends like YOU!

emoticon

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
CHANGZWALK's Photo CHANGZWALK Posts: 8,500
8/28/19 4:55 P

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emoticon agree with your thoughts Mermaid ~ I don't like characterizing any foods as bad/evil which implies I am too for eating them... and truth is, our bodies physically only need so much so it stores extra as fat... so I have eaten extra and am wearing too much food! but that does not make me a bad person, the food bad, and it does not mean that I am less worthy than any one else on the planet. just means I ate too much. I think Spangle helped me ponder these issues and arrive to this thinking... how I fell into my happy making guideline to "eat enough, not too much, not too little" and along with that, darn, choose foods that I like... preferably foods that help/nourish my body :)

I know when I post, I sound like a broken record.... and I don't mean to... but all things lead back to this for me... too much hurts me.... I tend to eat too much.... so back to basics for me... eat enough, not too much and choose foods I like that help my body :)

emoticon if we look past all the suggestions as hard and fast rules, we can ponder what the ideas really mean and if they will help us. I skip the rest... maybe later, maybe not... but I have found some essential truths in the pondering and I"m glad we're talking about them :)

MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/24/19 4:04 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 70: "No Good or Bad"

I think one of the hardest parts about changing our diet vocabulary is that words like "good, bad, cheat" are so prevalent, regarding food choices. It's really hard to make this vocab switch permanent (see me, constantly saying "cheat" last week), but I do feel like it's worth the effort.

I like this section from the book: "By changing your language, you take back your power around food. You also acknowledge that you are personally responsible for your decisions about what you eat."

Like I said yesterday, this whole idea of being able to take responsibility without making it personal is a whole new idea for me. Empowered responsibility. It's some really powerful stuff.

I went to a church lady crafting thing last night with my mom. She has a renewed commitment to her weight loss journey (I'm cautiously optimistic). There was a lot of food there, but we both did pretty well. I did notice how many times she used good/bad though. I know it's something she struggles with, too.

Part of today's lesson is to describe your food choices without good/bad, so... I chose to my follow my plan last night, for the most part. I did choose to indulge in one thing. I had one mini pecan pie muffin. I chose to eat it because it was a special food made by a special person. It was a very small portion, but it was very sweet! I don't regret my choice, but I do wish I had eaten it slower and savored it. Anything worth eating is worth enjoying.

This section of the book could not have come at a better time for me. I'm learning a lot, and I'm making some really great mindset changes.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/23/19 4:23 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 69: "No Cheating Allowed"

Today's Spangle lesson is about the word "cheat." And this is one of those things (like most weight loss things...) where I know better, but I don't necessarily DO better. I don't typically like using the word "cheat" in regards to dieting, but I have been using it a lot lately because... well, everyone knows what you mean when you say "cheat day." And since I had an "extended pause" with my eating plan last week, I've been saying "cheat" quite frequently! Well, I will take this suggestion from Spangle today and stop. I prefer using "pause" or variations of "choice/choose."

The other part of today's lesson is to talk to someone about your diet plan while making a conscious effort to use the word "choice." So, I'll write about it here, as if I were talking to someone about it for the first time...

The diet plan I am currently choosing to follow is a variation of keto. There is a lot that I really love about keto, but one of my favorite things about it is that you can really personalize it and experiment and make it your own. I really enjoy my food choices on keto, and I love that I have so many options to choose from in my town, in regards to dining out. Right now, I am choosing to abstain from grains and sugar, mostly. It's pretty simple when you think of it like that. Sometimes, I choose to eat something with artificial sweeteners, like Rebel ice cream, but I try to keep that to a minimum, since sweet stuff triggers my sugar cravings. Overall, I am happy that I chose this diet plan, and it's something that I feel like I can stick to for quite awhile. I could see myself eventually choosing to make this diet plan more of a long-term lifestyle change.

Thank you for coming to my TED talk.

Spangle is right: using "choice/choose" is very empowering. A couple other lines from the book that really spoke to me...

"The truth is, you can't 'cheat' with food! It's impossible. The word 'cheat' refers to something illegal or immoral, and food is neither of these. You do not have some kind of moral or character defect just because you ate a cookie."

"You're in charge of your own choices. Take responsibility for the decisions you make around food, and then when you talk about your actions, describe them in ways that maintain your personal power."

The concept of taking responsibility for something, but having that NOT reflect on your personal character is kinda foreign to me... I take everything personally! So this is new territory, but I feel like it is something that can help me in all areas of life.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/22/19 10:35 P

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100 DWL, Day 68: I Had a "Pause"

Another excellent lesson about recovering from a slip-up or binge. Spangle encourages us to use the word "pause" when describing these incidents. It's non-judgemental, and it has nothing to do with your character or willpower. Label it as a pause, take some time to figure out what really happened, and then make a plan to move forward.

She also suggests a visualization technique: Imagine a dry-erase board, and then write down whatever happened. Mermaid suggestion: avoid using emotionally charged words and phrases; stick to the facts. "I ate ten cookies" and not, "I gorged on ten cookies." Write down whatever happened, and then imagine yourself wiping those words away and erasing the board, until you have a clean slate.

I really love the "pause" idea. That's all it is. It's just a brief period where you took a break. You don't have to "slip" up, "fall" off the wagon, or any of those other things that, now that I think about it, are all kinda violent verbs. You can just pause. I also like this word because it conveys control. If you hit the pause button, then you can also hit the play button. That remote control is in YOUR hands!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/21/19 2:41 P

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100 Days of Weight Loss, Day 67: Never Say "I Blew It"

Y'know... today's lesson would have been really helpful last week... Further proof that this book is really useful if you actually USE it...

Today is all about containment and damage control. Of course, Spangle doesn't use those words... But she's talking about EXACTLY what I did last week with my ill-fated cheat day. You have to learn to minimize these things so that they don't blow up and derail your entire program for several days. The phrase I so often hear is, "If you had one flat tire, would you slash the other three?" And the problem is, when I'm in the self-loathing throes of a binge, YES, I would slash the other three! I'd pour gasoline all over that car and torch the mother! So that phrase isn't very helpful to me. None of the well-meaning little quips are, typically. My psychology just doesn't work that way.

Spangle doesn't offer slogans. She encourages us to minimize the damage, keep a minor mistake from becoming a crisis. Her phrases are things like, "Well, that was interesting. I wonder what that was all about." "That was minor, so I need to keep it that way." I will try these types of phrases in the future. Generally, what happens, is I get very anxious about whatever the slip-up was and then I start getting panicky, and then the self-loathing kicks in, and then... I dunno, I have a really hard time digging myself out. I'm proud of myself that I always manage it, and I feel like these episodes are happening less often, and with a shorter duration... But it is still REALLY hard.

I like this section from the book: "When you think you've 'blown it,' you may decide you should punish yourself by eating even more. Although you feel bloated and miserable, you make yourself pay by pushing in more food, which makes you feel even worse."

THIS. Oh, man. Of all the diet and weight loss books I've read, this is the only one that makes me feel understood.

With this knowledge, looking back at my cheat day mishap...

First off, I could have planned it better. Pros and cons of having a cheat day in the first place aside... I thought I planned it well, and I could have planned it better. When I felt it getting away from me, I could have used any sort of distraction technique. That would have been a good time to do something nurturing like an at-home spa day. And I needed to remind myself that it wasn't my fault. The entire diet industry wants us to believe that we are fat because of some character flaw. But food products nowadays are created in labs where they are scientifically engineered to be hyper-palatable and incredibly addictive. Food companies aren't trying to feed and nourish you; they're trying to get you hooked and make money. It was not my fault that my planned meal caused me to experience very bad cravings. The shame spiral that happened after? Yeah, I could have shown more control over that. But I can still learn from it. Shame, guilt and self-loathing... It's like throwing gasoline on a fire when you're going through bad cravings. So the best thing we can do is love ourselves, know our worth, and try to minimize our exposure to foods that hurt us.

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
MERMAIDLIFE's Photo MERMAIDLIFE Posts: 1,106
8/15/19 1:38 P

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Laura, with all of the emerging research on intermittent fasting, I am skeptical of Day 13... I think it is yet another one of those weight loss things where every individual is different. A lot of folks do well with regularly timed small meals. At the same time, I think it's pretty counter-productive to eat if you're not hungry. I do well with IF, so I try to keep up with it. I know from personal experience that I can easily handle a 24 hour fast if I'm busy, so I don't let it worry me. I have found that keto and IF combined help me to better understand my eating cues, so that I can more easily recognize true hunger versus boredom, loneliness, thirst, etc. Experiment and see what works best for YOU.

...I am trying to get acclimated again after a cheat day that magically transformed into TWO cheat days... I'm sure I'm not the only one who has done that, ha!

2020 "I'm Getting Married!" Personal Challenge (Goal: 394)
1/19: 399
1/26:
2/2:
2/9:
2/16:
2/23:
2/29: Wedding Day!


 current weight: 399.0 
450
436
422
408
394
CELTLADYMN's Photo CELTLADYMN SparkPoints: (8,894)
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8/15/19 10:18 A

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Day 13 Oops, I forgot to eat!

~~Whenever you go long periods without fuel, your body protects itself by hoarding some
of the calories for later use. You also risk getting a late-day energy slump, which leads
to even more eating struggles.
~~Make it a habit to tell yourself, “I have no choice.” By convincing yourself that skipping
meals is not an option, you’ll work a lot harder to routinely take care of your fuel needs.
________________________________________
_______________________________

In the past, this would have been a day where I would have just scoffed!  Me...?  FORGET to eat??!?!



This time through, it is actually happening some days.  As I try to get more in tune with what my body is needing, I find a lot of things don't sound good anymore.



I was out of town last weekend, so our usual grocery pattern was disrupted.  We're also getting ready for a 2-week vacation, so don't want to buy a bunch of food that will go bad while we're gone.  So, "Mother Hubbard's" cupboard is looking pretty bare.  This has resulted in me skipping some meals.



The hard part is that I know I need to keep "fueling" my body with good energy, but I also feel like I can live "off the fat of the land" (A phrase my Dad used to say to us as teenagers!) for a while without doing any damage.



In the warm MN summers, it is more important that I keep well-hydrated than making sure I don't miss a single meal once in a while.



In the past, missing 2 weeks of the book, as I did this time, would have resulted in lots of berating myself and stopping all together.  This thread is helping me realize I have to take my time & let these "daily" lessons sink in as needed.  If I can really learn some lasting lessons about myself & my emotional food issues, I no longer care how long it takes.



2019 is my year to work on ME!

~Laura

2019 End of Year Challenge! (Goal: 339)
10/27: 351.6
11/03: 348.8
11/10: 347.6
11/17: 348.2
11/24: 346.6
12/01:
12/08:
12/15:
12/22:
12/29:
CHANGZWALK's Photo CHANGZWALK Posts: 8,500
8/12/19 12:44 P

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Mermaid... sometimes... a thought/phrase that helps me to remind myself...

emoticon i am worth MORE THAN any bite(s) of that freakin' cookie! (or pizza, chips or whatevs….) there are times when I do make the choice to set aside overeating... and this can be helpful then.

i would agree this is not the stop technique in the throes of a binge... and other times, in struggles, i find an emotional compromise binge vs add an extra snack or double portions, or extra veggies or whatev helps...

so for me, this is not always or never but sometimes helpful... and sometimes... in situations like we were out for pizza and movie after... we could eat the leftovers or leave on plate... it would spoil in the hot summer car heat... in that case, I decided I was worth more than the $$ in the doggie bag... I was worth more than eating the last 2 slices... which would have put me to sleep during the movie I wanted to watch... :)

emoticon way to work through your thinking... and, I agree, it's not about being punitive... it's about looking for the positive reasons not to overeat the foods we don't physically need... and/or for our other positive reasons :)



Edited by: CHANGZWALK at: 8/12/2019 (12:47)
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