IF

I’m still having an issue with emotional eating. I am also dealing with the bone numbing fatigue that comes with a RA flare-which means I eat mindlessly for “energy”. I just want to maintain the progress that I’ve worked so hard to achieve. I’ve decided to try intermittent fasting (IF) to control my desire to shove food in my face 24/7.

Since my goal is to prevent over eating rather than rapid weight loss I’ve chosen to place my eating window from 9 am to 5 pm. I will still walk in the morning for about 35 minuets to get my fasting “workout”. Hopefully next week I will see 0 weight gain-which will be a victory for me.

Acceptance

Let me start off by saying pizza is probably one of my favorite foods. I love its smell, the crunch of a thin crust, the hot gooey cheese, and simple toppings-usually mushrooms, olives, or spinach. The number of times I’ve burned my tongue because I couldn’t be bothered to let it cool off is probably in the hundreds. I like my pizza pipping hot or straight from the ‘frige. Nothing in between.

My pizza addiction is so bad that after meeting with my nutritionist she conceded to let me keep it as a part of my nutrition plan. I agreed to eat one slice of pizza as a main dish with a cup of veggies to accompany each slice. The vegetables were supposed to fill me up and prevent me from going for slice #2, #3, or as I’m ashamed to admit sometimes #4. And her strategy would have worked great-if I actually prepared the vegetables to go with my pizza.
In the beginning I was good. I would microwave a bag of vegetables. Then I would dutifully measure out 1 cup worth of the vitamin packed goodies. My plate would look like one of those plates from a commercial or health magazine where a less nutritious dish was paired with a healthy side like a salad or brussel sprouts. But I soon realized that I can’t be trusted around pizza-period.
Sooner than even I thought possible I fell off the wagon hard. Pizza stopped being a Friday evening welcome weekend treat and became my equivalent to drive thru. I’m pescatarian and pizza is one of the few fast food options that I have in my area. All I needed to do was grab my phone, hit re-order, and pick my trigger food up. I would always come up with a reason why the vegetables were not necessary. Sometimes the excuse would be that I had ordered a veggie lovers pizza that time so I didn’t need the additional vegetables. Other times I would lie to myself telling me that my self-control was greater than it actually is and that I could stop after 2 slices. Pizza is the very definition of a trigger food for me. Pizza will always cause my resolve to break and I will always eat more than I should.

So pizza has been taken out of heavy rotation in my diet. It’s a once a month rather than a once a week thing. And I must be truthful with myself and admit that I will be eating more 3 slices. I have to accept that I will go over my desired calorie count for that day but I must not go over 1800 calories total for the day. I accept my bad relationship with this food. Acceptance has lead to better control, and better control has led to weight loss.

The Beginning

I wish I could narrow it down to the exact date, time, meal that sent me over the edge into a point of seemingly no return. I’d like to figure out what switch got flipped in my brain in which food became the solution for all of life’s ups, downs, bumps, highs, and lows. At some point I entered an unhealthy relationship with food. It became my comfort. I lost all sense of reason when it came to portion control and calorie count. All I knew was that it made me feel better-it was my medicine when I felt bad, a friend when I felt lonely, and it soothed my frayed nerves after a long day. However the relief was short-lived. After every unhealthy choice or calorie laden snack I was very aware that I was harming my body. But I couldn’t figure out how to stop the downward slope. I began my weight gain journey a US size 6 and ended that journey when a size 16 fit better than the 14s hanging in my closet. I didn’t like the way I looked. I didn’t like the fact that my doctor wanted to talk about getting my blood pressure under control or the nurses surprise when she realized that my blood sugar was normal even though I was now classified as obese. So I am doing something about it. I’ve lost 18 lbs so far and my size 14 clothes are getting too big. But I bad habits are trying to creep in. I miss my old meals. I miss grabbing a bag of chips and dip and sitting back after work and watching a movie and eating entire bag of potato chips. For so long I had associated these types of toxic behaviors as fun, relaxing, or what I deserved for surviving the bumpy road we call life.

I want to change all of that and want this blog to help keep me on track. I want to remember where I came from and where I am going. I want to be the best me and right now I am working toward that. Slowly but surely I will find my healthy self again.