A food addict's travels on the road to recovery.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bye-Bye Bingeing

I learned something about myself today. I'm getting better at dealing with, and changing, the reasons I became obese in the first place. I've always been the poster girl for emotional eating. Not anymore.

I heard some really bad news today about someone that I love. It doesn't affect me directly, but to them....for their life....it's devastating. My heart aches for them. Not long after I heard the news, maybe an hour or so, I felt an old, familiar feeling coming over me. The binge feeling. It always shows up in a helpless, hopeless situation, and before 5 months ago, I always gave in to it, without even much of a thought, really.

Well not today. I felt it, and for a change, I actually RECOGNIZED it for what it was BEFORE I shoved anything in my mouth. Next was the decision on whether or not to give in to it. The first amazing thing was that I even took the time to make a decision. The second amazing thing is that I decided not to give in. I chose me over the heartache. I chose my health, and all the progress I've made, and the goal I've got my eyes fixed on over the stupid eating.

I think this means I'm finally learning to compartmentalize. I have been yearning to learn this new skill. It's a tough one to get a grip on, but once you start to, what a feeling of freedom. If I keep practicing this, it's going to make me free from obesity forever.

It doesn't mean that I don't care about this person, or the tragedy they're trying to deal with right now. In fact, it means just the opposite. We can't be there to help our family and friends through problems in their life if we're dead from a heart attack, stroke, diabetes, etc. None of us can. It's a matter of separating the feelings and how you deal with them. Losing my weight, and dealing with the way I got obese in the first place, is starting to become a separate issue from everything else that happens in my life....good or bad.

While grieving for my loved one today, I felt frantic, nervous, helpless, out of control....and I felt like my hands wanted to be doing something (shoving food into my face), and like my mouth wanted to be chewing on that food. It's a knee jerk reaction for me, because I've done this very thing for what....20 years??

So instead of bingeing, I told myself no, I know what's going on here, and I'm changing my life. This is not the way I will continue to react to these situations. I ended up chomping on some sugar-free chewing gum while I busied my hands cleaning out my closet. I packed up a big box of clothes that are too big for me now, and got everything else in there organized. I downed a couple of 32 oz. glasses of water to make my stomach feel super full, and that's how I got through it.

After such a mentally exhausting afternoon, I started thinking that I didn't want to go to the gym tonight with Billie like we planned to do at 6pm. I told myself I was just too tired. This was the first time I told myself I wasn't going since I joined about a month ago. It was such a foreign feeling, because I LOVE going to the gym. Exercise is not just good for you physically, but it's sooooo good for you mentally. You get to work out all of your stresses and Lord knows there's plenty of those, aren't there?

That's when I realized that the gym was EXACTLY where I needed to be. I told myself that if I can just make myself get there, and especially during the really rough times, then I've got this thing licked. I beat the binge, and I was going to beat the exhaustion and get to the gym. That's what I did. I did Day 2 on the C25K (the first 3 days on Week One are all the same), and I finished a lot stronger than I did a couple of days ago. I also did 3 reps on all the machines in my weight circuit. It takes us about 1 1/2 hours for our workouts, and it's the best hour and a half of my day.

I came in at 1700 calories again today, and took a little peek at the scale when I got out of bed this morning, to see how things were going. I weighed exactly the same this morning as I did last Friday. Huh? Not sure what's up with that, but it's only mid-week, so no need to fret. My crazy a$$ body has been known to add and drop 7 lbs in a single day. The only day that matters is Friday, so I'll just keep plugging along and we'll see how it works out. 'Nite friends. :)

Quote For the Day:

"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all." -Dale Carnegie


  1. Sorry that someone you care about is going through a difficult time, but I am very proud of you for handling it so well. Great job, Tammy.

  2. Great post Tammy, this shows a woman finally in control of her life, health and emotions. There will be blips along the way, but you have got to grips with the habits of a life time and you are breaking thiose habits daily.

    Tammy Girl you Rock!!!



    PS. Not dismissing your loved ones trouble, you are there for her/him and thats the best thing you can do xxx

  3. Tammy - I think it's great that you found yourself in that exact moment before a binge and managed to think your way out of it. That is such a monumental thing. I know it's something that I have to exercise again and again as those impulses to binge come up. Practice makes perfect (or something close to it)!

  4. You GO Tammy, girl!!!

    Those epiphany moments are so important in the re-inventing of ourselves. Old habits are so hard to reverse, but when you pause - even for a moment to consider your options - that's progress!

    I have danger foods that I have to just leave alone. One is wine. I do love me some wine. I start out wanting only a glass or two, but once it's in my belly, I want to go back for more. So I have lately been dealing with my permissiveness with the bottle. I have actually done what you did... stopped and asked myself if I really wanted it. Once I realized I could have it, but didn't need to have it, it was easier to pass up. I have this ongoing argument with myself all the time though. It's an ongoing thing. Another new temptation? Coco Almonds. Not chocolate covered... cocoa powder dusted. OMG. If you see these (Emerald Almond brand) in the grocery store.... run! Run away fast. Although almonds are nutritious, I'm not sure eating a whole container of them is. So no more cocoa almonds for me. My son made me buy some for him and his sister and since they were buy one, get one free, I did. But I told them HIDE THESE IN A PLACE I WILL NEVER FIND THEM.

    So even after losing 70 pounds, I still have the same temptations and urges. I want to eat when I get stressed and emotional and angry and hurt and tired and when that time of the month rolls around. It never goes away. So it's good to be reminded that we have choices. We really aren't at the mercy of our mouths. No matter what. NO MATTER WHAT, we can still choose healthy alternatives - like you did. Thanks so much for this great post. It's relative and important.

    Casa Hice loves you! XO

  5. I think the hardest thing for me when I know I am having a very good healthy, active week is NOT stepping on that scale till my weigh in day LOL, I get too wrapped up in those numbers.
    I am also an emotional eater in remission.

  6. Way to go on dealing with your emotional eating. It hit home with me reading what you said. I've gotten that way over family but it's usually not out of sympthy but because I don't say what I'm thinking. Your post made me realize maybe it's time for me to deal with some people in my life that for the past 2+ yrs I've just been avoiding. I know I need to be able to deal with everyone and all situations. I know I'm definitely stronger now than I use to be. Sounds like you are too. Good job.

  7. Hi Tammy. I think what you are doing here is really important. A huge achievement. Breaking this pattern is going to change life for the better - and YOU ARE DOING IT!

    Your fortitude in the face of adversity is, as ever, quite astonishing and an inspiration.

    Fab Tammy has definitely taken over!

    Best wishes,
    Bearfriend xx

  8. Wow, recognizing the binge moment and overcoming it...more successful than losing 20 pounds! Amazing! This change will serve you well as you continue your path to health! You go GIRL!

  9. Congratulations on recognizing and not binging, and also on compartmentizing. That is so great. You can still be there for someone during their crisis and you don't have to have one. You should be strong for them.

  10. Well, it sounds like you are rocking it with the weight loss (at least the mental aspect). Keep it up.

  11. I tried posting this earlier, but my computer was acting up, so I doubt that it went through...

    Thanks for joining the Christmas Challenge! I am excited to start and Saturday is just a few days away! I can't wait to see all that we can accomplish over the holidays!!!

  12. That is a HUGE change! You have really made great strides in overcoming the binge eating, and I am proud of you. I so appreciate your comment on my blog tonight! It means so much to me, and I am glad we are doing this... changing our lives... together :)

    So proud of US!

  13. I really enjoy reading your post. Thanks for sharing.

  14. you are a strong, awesome lady.

  15. Great post - really interesting - and congratulations on being able to separate your physical hunger from your anxiety about your friend. Good job !