Tip the Scales

It is getting harder and harder for me to write for this thing.

I just can’t put my finger on why, though.

I enjoy talking about my healthy living journey. But, I just can’t think of anything to write.

It may be because I am ashamed that I seem to be sliding down the hill. Since we last talked I have gained back four pounds. Every time I feel like I know what I am doing I become a little more slack with the rules. Then I scoff at the scale when it shows I’ve gained weight. Like it disappointed me or something.

I really wish that food was something I never had to think about. That I could just eat and it would be alright. That I exercised enough to balance it all out. But, I can’t do that. I can’t go to food like an alcoholic can’t go to a bar. I become insatiable. In the past couple of weeks I have eaten: a whole package of Double Stuf Oreos (in 1.5 sittings), a series of different cookies, pizza, chips, mexican rice, and many other slip ups.

Nikki and I helped at a Disciple Now at the church last weekend. If you haven’t ever experienced this, it is kind of like a lock in with a bible study backbone. Parents were encouraged to bring snacks to satiate the young mouths for 2 days and boy did they. The moment I laid eyes on that table of sweets I couldn’t stop thinking about it. The worst part about it is that the kids barely touched a fourth of it. So, us diligent leaders were allowed to take some home. To a normal person this would mean at least a weeks worth of desserts. I ate them all by the next morning. To answer your question, no, I didn’t take everything off the table. Just one bag of cookies. But, I was ashamed of myself.

I really don’t know why it is so easy for me to fall into these traps, especially since I always feel terrible afterwards. Not emotionally, but physically. Our bodies were clearly not made to run like this.

I think, in the end, even though I can’t think of anything to write I have to keep writing on this blog. I have to have the accountability and I have to share my struggles. You all inspire me so much. I can’t give this up.

Not for all the Oreos north of the equator.

More ‘Motional Metaphors

I realized I forgot to show you my favorite photo from this weekend’s fun and frivolity:Santa fishing. I really hope that is a snowman in the back paddling or my view of Santa as a doting husband has disintegrated verily.

I decided to break out the Cake Batter Cashew Butter for breakfast this morning. It was AMAZING. I don’t know what mom put in this stuff (although knowing her it was all healthy and organic) but it is my new crack. I wish I had gotten a full size mason jar full.

Nikki got very sick this morning, and we are not quite sure why. Since there seems to always be a stomach virus going around, (where do people get this news by the way? Is there a Virus daily mag I don’t know about?) that might be what has stricken her. I had initially gone into work, but she called me upset around 8:30 so I came home. My morning has been full of taking care of Nikki and then inexplicably watching 16 and Pregnant when she falls asleep. I hate to believe in stereotypes, but all these girls live with their Meemaws and have behavioral issues. Aren’t there any well adjusted pregnant teenagers? I guess they wouldn’t make good tv if they were studying and going to bible study.

I have been meaning to add a new page to my blog that features all the great blogs I peruse daily. There really is a wealth of information and infotainment out there and I’d like to give them all a shout out. One blog that really stuck out to me was the latest entry in the “Stuffed with Emptiness” series from Tina over at Best Body Fitness. This series is directly responsible for my starting this blog. I never realized how many people had similar problems to my own, and (I know it’s a little bigoted of me) I never realized that a woman could suffer from them. Binge eating is a very serious problem and all you have to do is watch some sort of expose on the local news and see all the headless obese people to realize this. I use humor in my posts because this is how I have trained myself to deal with difficult life problems and it just makes me comfortable. Please don’t think that I don’t take this very seriously.

By the way, I bring this up because I had a little run in with binge eating today. Nikki had fallen asleep again and visions of Peanut Butter Balls starting dancing in my head. “What does it matter?” I thought. “I could reach in and eat one and no one would be the wiser.” But, for some unknown reason, I pulled the whole bag out and placed it on my nightstand. I queued up National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and popped no less than five PBB’s in my mouth (not at the same time, ironically). I feel gross, I feel like a failure, and I am disappointed in my formerly steely resolve. Tina’s post encouraged me because she is a very successful woman, mother, and personal trainer, and she still has urges to binge eat. This is encouraging, and terrifying. I know I can achieve all I want to be, but this demon will still be sitting on my shoulder, waiting to tickle my ear with words dripping in high fructose corn syrup (Corn sugar? Nice try corn conglomerates). I will have to lean more on God to find the strength to resist, but for now I feel good knowing that it is at least possible. Thank you, faithful readers, for all of your encouragement. I will need more of it as time goes on. Have faith in me, and we can both achieve great dietary goals. There will be hurdles though, and we will trip over them.

We are not in the best of shape you know.

But I’ll help you up, if you help me.

Friday for Serious

I think I ended yesterday’s post poorly. It sounds like I am making light of the fact I overeat, when actually I was just being really awkward and didn’t know how to finish that post. Honestly, that thing with my face falling asleep really happened! Wouldn’t that wake most people up? The way I eat terrifies me.

Case in point-last night we had my mom’s “Almost Vegan Lasagna” (I’ll call it that because there was a smidgen of cheese in there) and some garlic bread for dinner. It was a lovely meal and filled me up just as I should be-not hungry, but not weighed-down by an over full stomach. The taste of the garlic bread lingered in my mouth and I thought of the many ways I could get rid of it. I had some gum, I could brush my teeth, or I could eat something else. Naturally I chose to eat something else.

My wife had asked me to pick up some milk at the store before I came home. I had to go by there anyway because we are having a get together tomorrow with our friends from Sunday School. As it is getting colder, we thought we would have a bonfire and cook some hot dogs and s’mores. I filled up the front of the cart with Nathan’s hot dogs (is there another brand?) and headed over to get the milk. On the way I passed the cereal aisle and thought “I might need something for dessert”. My wife calls Life cereal my “crack” and when I passed it in the cereal aisle I felt a twinge.

We finished our lasagna and I got up to put the dishes in the sink. My tongue was darting out of my mouth like a lizard and I said “This garlic bread has a horrible aftertaste. It’s a good thing I thought of dessert,” my wife’s eyes beam, “for me.” Then she pouts.

I poured my customary over large, supposed-to-be-for-mixing bowl and snarfed it down with haste. What a lovely burst of flavor (endorphins?)! What a treat to enjoy! Later, I found out that my wife’s comparison of cereal to crack was not far off. After she went to bed I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I wanted, NEEDED more cereal. I couldn’t even focus on what I was watching. I tip-toed to the bedroom and found my wife sitting up in bed reading. “I am going to close this door,” I told her as I closed this door. This causes Max to go into hysterics and start slinging his squirrel, which in turn causes Gawain to bark and try to attack him. All of these distractions excited me. “It’s like God wants me to eat more cereal!” I thought as I went back into the kitchen. I still wasn’t sure she wouldn’t hear me so I took my Bigfoot Bowl into the living room and filled her to the brim. When I finished I realized with a gasp that the entire box was gone. I hesitated for a moment then poured the milk and ate. I then put the empty box back in the cabinet so my wife wouldn’t know what I had done.

Tell me, are these the acts of a crazy person? Or, are they more akin to the actions of an addict? Food addiction is real, and I dare say that I suffer from it. How do you overcome an addiction to something you require daily? I guess you just take it one day at a time. Some days are good and other days I eat an entire 8-count box of Pop tarts. Thankfully, I have a family that encourages me on the bad and good days. I hope you do too. If not, just look for me in the cereal aisle.

Pizza-stained Pajamas

I think I have worn the same shirt twice this week. I hope that no one noticed, but you know at least one person did. And now you are thinking about that person that would notice in your life. The noticers! They’ll get you every time (more on this later)

So, yesterday I talked about how my reactions to food mirror my dog’s. Today I want to focus on the biggest reason I overeat: emotions.

We took that picture this morning, so my hair is a little Bozo sheik.

My wife and I have been married long enough now that we have distilled certain conversational topics to one or two words. If I call her and say “Pizza?” she knows I have had a bad day. Just like when she says “Taco Bell” I know she has lost complete control of her faculties. Fast forward an hour or two and my belly is five slices fuller and I feel empty. Why did I think the pizza would make me feel better? I am not a scientist, but lets throw the word endorphins in here. Maybe it has something to do with endorphins?

Now that that is out of my system my layman’s response to emotional eating would be that it is an escape. Much like television allows us to stop thinking, overeating allows you to stop everything. Nothing says “I’m not moving for the rest of the night” like pizza stained pajama pants. In college when I got in a mood I would go to Wal-Mart, purchase two pounds of chicken tenders, one pound of potato wedges, a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, M & Ms and a coke. I would then plant myself on the mattress, watch movies and eat until I looked like a swollen possum on the highway. For some reason the end of that story made me feel like Jeff Foxworthy.

I think the crux of the problem is that I was looking for something to replace my emotion. The “full” feeling would conquer my depression. The “half my face just fell asleep” feeling was a whole other bushel of bananas. Crap, now I’m back to being emotional. Good thing Wal-Mart is open 24 hours.