Friday, February 13, 2015

Emotional eating and delusions

This weekend we are back at Crested Butte and this time my sister came along!  We drove here yesterday and stopped at our favorite Thai restaurant.  I ordered Chicken Pad Thai and spring rolls.  Even though I didn't fit in a workout yesterday, I was still given over 600 activity calories to use from my fitbit because of all the packing, loading, and unloading.  The condo is on the third floor so carrying everything up all the stairs is a workout in and of itself.  I got a new accountability partner, a friend of mine who is trying to lose weight after having a baby.  We've been texting every day and it has really helped.  I am not really surprised at how hard it is just to eat 1700 calories a day and not eat more.  I have really noticed how much I stress eat this week.  I couldn't survive on 1200 calories a day or even 1400, even at 1700-1800 I feel like I have to battle hunger and and stop myself from getting out of control.  I have done very good this week staying under my calories.  It is set to 1450 in MFP and I have been eating some, not all, of my exercise calories.  I'm remembering that I am trying to do something liveable and even though it is hard now, it will get easier over time.  I am not going to do anything too crazy to start off with.  If some days I don't feel like eating as much then I won't use all my exercise calories, and if some days I feel like working out longer then I will, but for now I have my hands full just trying to control my snacking, and making sure I am eating more fruit and veggies and less granola bars, chips, and goldfish.  I'm taking it slow this time and I don't have any deluded thoughts that it is going to be easy, or that I don't have to work hard, or that I can just plow through this and be done with it.  I'm now focused on something I can sustain for life.  I have given myself no rules to follow, just trying to stay within my calorie range, including my exercise calories, trying to eat healthier, and find foods that taste good and make me feel good and feel satisfied and energetic. 

Speaking of emotional eating here is a crazy experience.  So a few days ago I was working on my scarf, trying to finish one of my projects for this year, and I went upstairs to change Chloe's diaper and when I came back down Lily had taken my scarf, pulled the needle out and was walking around with it causing it to unravel.  I was mortified!  After sending Lily to her room I worked on putting the stitches back on the needle, but I ended up dropping five of them.  For those of you who are not knitters, dropping a stitch means that you lose one of the loops on your needle, If you don't catch it, that will then unravel down the length of your project, so you end up with a giant hole-line in your project.  I had to guess which row I was on since my pattern is 16 rows long.  I think she only unraveled one and a half rows thank goodness.  After assessing the situation I decided to just end the scarf where it was since all the dropped stitches had made several holes and it looked really messy.  I did end up finding all my dropped stitches and had to tack them down with needle and thread so they didn't unravel all the way (I am not very good at hand weaving them back to the top and then back onto my needle.  So my scarf is not quite as long as I would have liked it to be, but it is long enough and in the end, it's done!  It still looks great and finishing the scarf where the holes were created hides the mess since it's at the very end of the scarf and the border covers.  So that is one project down, and despite the unfortunate circumstances of it's finishing, I am still glad it is done. 

The main reason why I'm telling you this story is because after this happened, it was after dinner, and after I calmed down I experienced a very real, very sharp, and painful hunger.  As I was rummaging through the kitchen trying to curb this sudden onslaught of hunger I realized I was experiencing emotional hunger. I was surprised because it seemed so real, and in fact it was, I was experiencing a physical response to an emotional issue: Lily had nearly destroyed my project I had spent the last 5 years working on (working on and off on it).  This was before I came up with a solution to the problem and found all my dropped stitches.  Once I identified it as emotional, I told myself: "Eating is not going to fix your scarf, it won't solve the real problem".  So I had a glass of water and put the kids to bed.  Once I firmly told myself I was not going to eat because it wasn't real hunger and it wouldn't solve the real problem, I started feeling better and less hungry. 

What I learned from this was that 1. Emotional eating is a very real problem and it is not all psychological and that you can in fact experience a very real physical hunger due to an emotional situation.  2. This problem is identifiable, if you are aware you can realize you are experiencing emotional and not true hunger.  3.  This problem is treatable, solvable and fixable, and most importantly overcome able. I don't expect to succeed every time, but I now feel like I have some control.  It was hard not to eat, but it was possible and every success brings me closer to triumph and to change.  

1 comment:

  1. I am out of control with my eating!!! I feel your pain!!