Week five was better than the week before - thank God for that, eh?
- Discovering how wonderful sticking to the menu recommendations could be. How have I been missing out on the Sunrise Taco!? It is so rewarding (and delicious) to order blackened chicken salads (dressing on the side, please) and Nicoise salads without the potatoes (substituting sherry vinaigrette for the buttery dressing it usually comes with). And every time I eat a piece of multigrain bread I smile, remembering all the other diets Ive tried that disallow any sort of carb. The foods are satisfying in their own right.
- My first outdoor run in months - it really does feel good. Now if only I could remember how good running will feel when all I really want to do is stay in bed.
- Seeing fast results from doing the recommended toning exercises before bed. I could swear my body looked a little tighter by Thursday - even if it was only in my imagination, it was fun to consider.
- Every moment this week where I wanted to eat fried, cheesy goodness or tender, cakey sweetness, but was able to withstand the temptation. At an event Wednesday night, the hosts were serving pizza, chicken parmesan, and baked ziti. I knew I could resist the pizza, but I put about 3 tablespoons of chicken parm on my plate along with a mixed green salad. I ate only the salad! (Small victories.) Even after a gorging moment on Saturday, where Id eaten at least double the calories recommended, I stopped myself from grabbing a bagel thin out of the fridge, mostly because I didnt want to add another thing to my food journal.
- Food journaling. No matter how ugly, no matter where Ive eaten or whom Ive eaten with, Ive catalogued every meal, snack, and drink Ive ingested for the past 35 days. And Ive wanted to lie - Ive thought about omitting a snack or two off the register. But I havent. Im on this 7 Years Younger plan, and theyve given me this lovely little notebook with my name on it, and maybe Ive failed at restricting my calories more days than not, and maybe Ive neglected the exercise component more than my cohorts, but Im going to make sure theres something Ive done across the board: time, location, hunger level, food and quantity, and emotions - every meal, every day. My emotion spaces this week read mostly disappointed, discouraged, stressed. I wonder what others say.
- Recognizing the fun in cooking savory food. I was planning to bake my famous red velvet cupcakes for a friend this weekend, but it turned out they werent necessary. Instead, I took great pleasure in making the Ham & Veggie Hash for Sunday brunch - spectacular. Having my hands in many pots, boiling string beans, sautéing peppers and onions, baking chicken bacon (I substituted for the ham since I dont eat pork), stirring it all together in our classic cast-iron skillet, and serving it to my boyfriend - it was just as fulfilling as my most delectable dessert.
- Being unable to restrain myself from at least one snack or meal per hour for most of Friday night and Saturday.
- Discovering Id gained at least a pound on Sunday mornings pre weigh-in - likely due to all the stress eating of Friday night and Saturday. Whats going to change this?
- Do you know how angry it makes me feel to have given up Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and avoided Girl Scout Cookies (and Crumbs new Thin Mints Cupcake!) and donuts and all the leftover Valentines Day chocolate in the office and STILL gain weight?! It seems so horribly unfair!
- Exercise is important - the endorphins released are real and recognizable. I really must be mindful and work hard to incorporate it back into my life OFTEN.
- I really am in this alone. Not to say I dont have people who are encouraging me, who help me remain accountable, or who love me no matter what I weigh or how this commitment pans out, because Im lucky to have the love of my family and friends. Im so lucky indeed.
- But when it comes down to chow time, my thin friends can eat that plate of lobster mac and cheese and feel no shame following up with a Crème Brule dessert. The disciplined exercisers in my life can add an egg-and-cheese omelet to the Ham & Veggie Hash, and helping me stay on track just means not fixing one for meit does nothing to lessen my desire for the same. My mother will let me eat that extra KIND bar or two without stopping mefor she knows that saying something might cause more trouble than just letting me do what I want. Im a grown woman after all.
So what do you do? What do you do when youre used to having others help you when things get too hard? What do you do when neither fear of public humiliation or intense desire for thinness is enough to implement the discipline and self-control youve been craving your whole life? Despite the countless number of times Ive wanted to quit, I cant really give up. I dont know what that says about me or what it means for my eventual success or failure, or my happiness along the journey. But I guess it means theres still some hope. And thats enough to press send on this blog post and keep my fingers crossed about a better tomorrow.
And so we soldier on.
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