(DISCLAIMER: This is the first time I am posting my actual weight on my blog (outside of SparkPeople--for some reason I had no problem posting my weight there). I decided to do this because I will no longer let a number on a scale define me or cause me to be ashamed. I have nothing to be ashamed of, for I am actively making changes that will lead to a healthier me. I am more than just a number, I am a daughter of the Most High God, and He bought me with His blood! In the truth there is freedom, and I am embracing it.)
When I left to go to my parents' house for Christmas last Tuesday, I weighed in at 211.2. Today, I weighed in at 212. I've been floating between that and 210 for all of December, so I wasn't terribly surprised to see that weight, but I wasn't jumping up and down in excitement, either! BUT even though I gained .8 pounds over the Christmas holiday, I burned over 3900 calories last week! I've only done that one other time (back in the summer), and I was really proud of myself for staying committed to exercising despite being away from home and having limited options.
Of course, all that exercising was pretty much undone by all the eating. I have battled food issues for most of my life, but they seem to have intensified in the past two months or so, and I'm just now starting to realize this and try to find solutions to it. I don't want to use the term "emotional eater"; instead, I think "mindless eater" is more fitting for me. I haven't been thinking enough about the food I'm eating or why I'm eating it; if it's there, I just eat it! We all know that's a foolproof way to blow any weight loss progress, so it's no wonder I haven't made much progress in November or December! If I don't think about everything that goes into my mouth, I'm going to make bad choices. Period.
This past week it also didn't help that I couldn't track much of anything because the majority of food was homemade or restaurant fare without proper nutritional information. Otherwise, I'm very consistent about tracking food and most days I try to plan ahead for the next day so there are no surprises. This has worked well for me in the past because seeing that food already logged in there makes it more permanent, but recently I've just eaten and eaten and then later realized I've consumed 2,500+ calories in a day. That is NOT a way to live, and I know it because it was the way I've lived for years. I'm tired of not taking my health and my body seriously; I owe it to the Lord, to my husband, and to myself to take care of the body I've been given, and I can't keep feeding it junk and expect good results.
I think I got overly confident when I got to that 50 pound milestone and thought I could slack off a bit on intentional eating, but I have definitely proven myself wrong in that, and I've realized how proud and self-reliant I've been behaving. I've lost sight of my need for God to guide me and direct me on this journey, and I've gotten lazy. All that's going to change, though! If I'm going to make it to my goal, I HAVE to refocus and prioritize.
Right now my plan of attack to combat my out-of-control eating is as follows:
1. First and foremost I must keep my eyes on JESUS, the author and perfecter of my faith! If I stop viewing this as a spiritual journey as well as a physical and mental one, I am failing. The glory of God comes before everything else, and so I MUST do this in a way that brings honor to Him. That means no relying on my own strength or becoming cocky, no obsessing over a number on a scale or on a pair of jeans, no comparing myself to others but only to Him.
2. Weigh and portion out EVERYTHING I eat! I did this some at the very beginning of my weight loss journey, but then I just got lazy and trusted myself to eyeball measurements. I'm sure I'm consuming additional calories because of this, and that's completely unnecessary. I want to be purposeful and intentional about what I eat, so that means measure, measure, measure! My sweet husband allowed me to use some of HIS Christmas money to order a digital food scale, and I'm really excited for it come in the next week or so!
3. THINK before I eat! I want to pay attention to my body and know a true hunger signal versus a plain old craving. I want to be able to answer the following questions before eating something: Will eating this benefit me nutritionally? Will I feel guilty if I eat this? Is there a better food I could eat? Do I need this food right now? I'm going to put these questions on the refrigerator so I can have a visual reminder of them.
4. Learn to eat to live, not live to eat. I love food. Obviously, I didn't get to 261 pounds by hating it (can I just say it was REALLY hard to type that number!). But I need to stop relying on food to satisfy some deep emotional or psychological need that it is not to meant to satisfy. I want to change my way of thinking about food, so that my attitude becomes, "My body needs this as fuel" instead of "I don't care what my body needs, I want to eat what I want, when I want."
If I can achieve each of these four things, there is no reason I shouldn't succeed. By the grace of God, I am who I am.