Charting life's circuitous path

Seeing through a mirror, darkly…

Leave a comment

Source: via Patricia on Pinterest

All powerful, uplifting statements, but lately, I’ve become the sarcastic and jaded party-goer that makes everyone feel like they’d rather go home and change their cat’s litterbox than stay one more minute.

I thought I had really come a long way from the “eat everything on my big plate” phase in life, but my pants are starting to say something different.

They’re uncomfortable.

Today, on our way to work, I looked down at myself and said something I would never dream of thinking let alone saying to my best friend.

Was I loving myself?  No.

Was I doing more harm with the negativity than any rogue eating?  Yes.

A little over a year ago found me opening my eyes to calories and their role in weight management.  A bit slow, I know, but I’ve always been more conscious of fat in foods, and paid little attention to portion sizes and calories.

During my health-start journey, I began logging all of my calories down to the very last crumb.  Everything was meticulously written down and if I had “run out” of calories for that day, I would stop. This opened up a few positive doors:

  1. It helped me realize the reality of a serving size (and it wasn’t half my plate plus seconds).
  2. It gave me control over my health and weight.  I didn’t feel like I had to eat everything served to me.
  3. It made me aware of a whole spectrum of nutritional information, and it helped me to better regulate my protein intake (a good thing seeing as how I’m a vegetarian).

While all of these things are definitely positive, they were becoming obsessive.  I began restricting calories, saw food as a number rather than as an entity, and I was beginning to feel like the only way to stay in control was to beat myself up for slips and dips that naturally came and went.

In other words: bad news bears.

Source: via iscribbler on Pinterest

So, when I went on vacation back in May, I decided to not count my calories and to just play it by, well, stomach.  I knew I was going to gain weight, but it was really an experiment in possibilities.  Could I really do it without feeling horribly guilty?  Would I still count the calories in my mind?  What would happen with my weight?  Would I go crazy thinking about it?

I did gain weight from the vacation, but it was easily lost once I got back into the swing of things.  I did count calories in my mind, but it was a more general than precise – this opened up a new enjoyment for food.  I didn’t go crazy, but I have found that it’s far easier to blame myself over any weight gain.  In the end, I was a bit worried that I was letting myself enjoy the new freedom a bit too much.

I wondered whether I should go back to counting, but I loved how more intuitive my eating had become.  I loved being able to indulge without obsessing over the 10 extra calories.  I loved being more aware of my choices but not led through the nose by them.

So instead, I’m trying a “new” approach:  I have a brain, so I’m going to use it – not let it use me for its own gratifications.

Just like every Jack and Jill out there, I can be an emotional eater.  I’m also a celebratory eater and while I still believe that food can act as an important medium within social bonds, I don’t want to treat myself like a good dog.  I’m a smart gal with a brain that should be better at regulating itself.  It just needs a bit of training.

Training is now in progress, folks!  Let’s see if this old dog can learn new tricks. 😉

Author: iscribbler

A girl scribbling her way through health, love, food and life.

Please Leave a Scribble

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s