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

Sunday, April 3, 2011

This Post Is A Novel!

I've been in a downward spiral for the last 4 months where my weight is concerned.

I'm ready to climb out now.

What's been going on in my head?  Oh my...what a scary place to be.  :)

I've been hesitant to write it all out because some of it is just plain ridiculous and I know it.  But...I do happen to think that the blog is a good tool for journaling everything, and everything has to include what I call "the crap".  I cut my blogging back to about once a week or so while I've been wading around in the muck and the mire...but I've kept my blog open, because I've held onto that little spark of hope that one of these days I'd get my thinking back in the right place.  I feel like I'm finally there. 

I will admit that my thinking is altered towards the weight loss....I'm not interested in "hard core" like some people are.  I fail too often and the disappointment is too overwhelming.  I definitely have a major problem with consistency.  I'm afraid that's always going to be my personal battle with the weight loss.  Maybe one day I'll overcome it if I keep trying.

I pretty much threw my hands up in December...and not totally sure why, but I do know a few things that were going on at the time.  Little stupid stuff that I haven't wanted to mention.  For one thing, we had an unbelievable amount of chocolate in the office every day.  It was like living in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory 9 hours a day.  I am so not kidding you.  Nearly every client we have hand-delivered these elaborate, expensive baskets of nothing but chocolate-covered stuff.  Now I can handle the normal office candy bowl that Billie keeps chocolate in.....but this was just too much.  The entire month of December was just a continual barrage of gifted chocolates...no bueno for a chocoholic like myself.  Not good at all.  That was the beginning of the end. 

Another thing, and this is a continuing problem for me that I have not yet dealt with, is that Dwayne has been over 7 nights a week, every night, since I moved in this apt last July.  Prior to me moving in here, we lived about 45 mins apart from each other and I saw him about 4 days a week....now it's every day.  I am now totally aware of his daily eating habits and choices, and for the most part, they are horrific.  Meat, carbs, sweets, Coke, etc.  Deliciously fattening crap food.  I am surrounded by it.  For the record, and this will mean nothing to anyone else, but it irritates the living shit out of me, is that Dwayne and I will be dating for 7 years this August.  He has weighed nearly the exact same thing the entire time I've known him, within a 5 lb. range.  He's right at 230 lbs...give or take 2 or 3.  He's been 228, he's been 233, but it's usually 230 on the nose.  FOR NEARLY SEVEN YEARS.  Eating the stuff he eats.  I shouldn't care, but for some reason, this makes me crazy.  It truly does.  Something feels incredibly unfair about him being able to eat all the bacon double cheeseburgers and whole racks of BBQ ribs he wants and not gain an effing pound. 

I have bitched about this before on here, and several people have commented that I need to get over it.  Yeah.  I know.  But this time around, you can keep those comments to yourself if you don't mind. :)
 I know it's a personal problem for me....and I know I was a dumbass for giving up and giving in during December when he was off from work for 2 weeks for Christmas break and he was eating all of his meals in front of me.  I shouldn't have caved....and now I'm trying to finally deal with us eating 2 different ways and having to fix 2 different things, or watching him gnaw on fried food while I'm eating the broiled stuff.

I also got burned out on the calorie counting during that month.  There's just too much going on that month....too much holiday food at every turn, and I just couldn't seem to make myself hold the line.  I quite literally threw my hands in the air and said "eff it".  I can't remember how many lbs. I gained that month, but it was alot....somewhere between 10-20 lbs I think.  All I remember is I was feeling like I was almost past the point of no return.  It was a big gain in a short amount of time. It takes forever to take it off, yet I can put it back on in the blink of an eye.  Defeated, guilty, and like a big, fat screw-up is a good way of describing how I felt. 

I also found out during the month of December that my boss was not going to give me a raise.....a raise that was promised to me when I started last June.  I gave him 110% as I always do at any job....never late, never out, doing all the work he could pile on me....and when the time came, he dropped the bomb on me.  My budget is very tight....extremely tight.  After a year and 4 months of unemployment, and then starting a job (that I'm thankful for), at pretty low pay, I just kept telling myself if I could hold out 6 more months, it would get better.  Well, it didn't.  It sucked, and it was a huge disappointment.

The only thing I knew to do was to start my own business on the side, if I could do it with basically no capital.  I have a friend in Charleston that has her own personal assistant business.  I researched and researched, and learned as much as I could, and that's how the Errand Fairy was born.  Unfortunately, word of mouth is the only advertising I can afford, and that's not working out too well.  I haven't really had any business since I tried to start this business in the beginning of January.  My fabulous friend Tina, at Fat Girl Dives In, was gracious enough to create a fantastic website for me, which I posted a link to on my sidebar.  I'm very proud of it...I think it's absolutely perfect...exactly what I wanted.  She also used the logo she created to help me order my business cards.  I used the same logo to create a small flyer.  I've given out tons of cards and spent weekends hanging up flyers.  I've told everyone I know about the business, and I'm thinking maybe the economy is still in too poor of a state for people to warrant spending money on this kind of service.  I really, REALLY hope that it will get rolling sometime soon though.  God knows I could use the extra money.

My original plan was to work the Errand Fairy business on weeknights and weekends, around my current job.  My hope was to get busy enough that I could go part-time at work, and half the other half of the "work day" to grow my personal assistant business....with that eventually becoming my main job.   Well...you know what they say about best laid plans.

At the very beginning of February, Staci got fired at work.  The next day, my boss Scott pulled me in his office and told me he was giving me her job, along with a $2.50/hr raise.  Very, very happy about the raise....and very, very stressed about the new responsibility.  Here's the thing.  He's not hiring anyone else to fill the 3rd office girl's spot.  So that means what?  Tammy gets to work 2 positions...and do it with as little overtime as possible.  Now I wont' say that it's 2 full-time positions, because my original position of answering phones, filing, setting up new claims was not a hard, busy job.  That's how I knew I'd eventually be able to go part-time and grow my side business.  But with taking on Staci's job, which was definitely a 40 hr/wk job, ON TOP OF the job I was already doing....is feeling a little bit like insanity.

I now work my ass off.  I get in between 7a-8a and it's 90 mph til the end of the day...which is normally 5pm...but sometimes I get overtime.  When I first started with Staci's job, I was getting 10-12 hrs of OT a week (which the boss would prefer not to have to pay).  I've now gotten her job down so well and gotten so efficient at all of my duties, that it's around 3-4 hrs of OT every 2 week time period.  That takes REAL effort.  Speed, efficiency, dedication....and a whole lotta' stress.  Day in, day out, with no signs of letting up.  It. Is. Crazy.  Excedrin Migraine is my new best friend.  Lunch hour?  Who has time for a lunch hour??  It's been grab and go for 2 solid months now. 

However....I'm still getting fatter.  And that has to stop.  I hung out around 257.4 for weeks on end.  I got on the scale this morning with a new dedication in mind and saw 261.4 staring at me.  Shit.  I'm over 260.  A new, higher decade.  Faced with the realization that I REALLY need to actually do something to lose weight, and not just mull it over in my mind, I have tried to make improvements this weekend.

I've been reading a lot of blogs like I normally do, I just haven't been commenting much at all.  I've just been absorbing what other people are doing.  While calorie counting definitely works IF YOU STICK TO IT....I'm a little burned out on that, so I've been considering other methods.  I definitely think there needs to be some form of tracking with the food if there's going to be any kind of success at all.  It has been my belief from Day One of starting this blog that pretty much any of the programs out there work....programs don't fail.  People do.

The only concept I don't really think is too brilliant is what they call "intuitive eating".  I laugh every time I think of this.  Eat when you're hungry....don't when you're not...listen to your body, etc.  I'm going to lay it out there by saying that if us fat people/food addicts, or whatever you want to call it, found it nd doable to only eat when hungry, we wouldn't be here.  It's that simple.  We all know the reasons we eat....and very few of them have to do with actual hunger.  Listen to my body?  Well sometimes the body and the mind get blurred....and I intuitively ate my way up to 340 lbs. by doing what one of them told me to....who knows which one. 

Yeah, I'm afraid that tracking what you eat is the only true way to get a grip. So for a change, I'm going to delve into the Weight Watchers Points Plus program.  I'm not paying for it...I'm getting info from friends and other bloggers who are doing it.  My supervisor at work, and good friend Billie is doing the WW plan, and she brought me her Pocket Guide and Points Calculator to work yesterday to help me get started.  I've been reading over the little guide today.  A lot of it is stuff you already know, but it's always good to be refreshed.  Sometimes you need to hear it again.

It said a couple of things that struck me, and I liked them.  One was, strive for 30 mins of activity a day...but if you've been sedentary (and God knows I have), start with 10 mins.  I can do that.  Another thing it said in the vegetable section is that if pre-washed, pre-sliced veggies make it easier for you to actually eat them, then it's worth the extra money.  Thank you Weight Watchers, because I was feeling really guilty about that pack of pre-washed and pre-sliced package of fresh mushrooms I bought last night at the grocery store. 

I picked up a few things at the grocery store last night and used some coupons I had, but I really need to get back to the store tomorrow for some more produce to make it all the way through the week with healthy eats.  Last night I bought that pack of mushrooms, 2 apples, 4 bananas, a cantaloupe, some baby carrots, an onion, a bell pepper, and some of those little sweet peppers that look like baby bell peppers, and some small pickling cucumbers.  Not sure what else I want to pick up, but if the fruits and veggies are going to be my 0 point fillers, then I probably need some more.

I knew yesterday at work that I was going to start the plan soon, but hadn't grocery shopped yet and the frig was EMPTY.  Dwayne suggested seafood for dinner, and I decided last night's dinner would be a good time to start making better choices than I have been in the last 4 months.  Small changes would be better than nothing, so I tried to get started.  We went to the restaurant and we ordered drinks.  He got a Coke and I got water with lemon.  My first good choice.  He ordered fried jumbo shrimp and grouper, and although I wanted grilled, they didn't have a grilled section on the menu.  I decided on broiled over the fried....scallops and grouper.  To my surprise and delight, the broiled seafood wasn't swimming in a dish of butter like I assumed it would be.  It was plated, and almost a little on the dry side, with some herbs and spices on top.  Dwayne got fries on the side....I ordered a baked potato, and instead of the butter and sour cream, I went with a little Heinz 57.....I left the coleslaw and hush puppies alone.  It was a start.

We got up at 9am this morning and I asked Dwayne if he wanted sausage and eggs for breakfast (I use Jimmy Dean turkey sausage patties, and he actually likes them!)  I was thinking egg whites for myself in place of the eggs.  He said he didn't really feel like breakfast food and let him think about it.  (For the record, last weekend we ordered omelettes and hashbrowns from the Waffle House)....my goal for this weekend was improvement.  I ended up grabbing a banana for breakfast and he skipped it altogether.

About 11:30a he headed to Publix to pick us up some sandwiches from the deli.  Better choice than the pizza that was waiting in the freezer.  He had them put all the veggies on mine, and also on wheat bread.  Thank you honey.

At least 10 mins of activity.....I needed to get off the sofa and do something.  We looked up dog parks and took Scarlette to a new one.  He read online that it didn't have a parking lot, so you'd have to park at an apt complex down the road a bit.  We parked about 1/4 mile away and walked to it, only to find a small parking lot when we got there.  Dwayne was a little irritated that he actually had to walk that 1/4 mile in, and again on the way back to the car.  He's my dedicated couch potato.  We ran around and played fetch with Scarlette for nearly an hour.  Yay me for actually moving.  :)

When we left the dog park, Dwayne swung through Burger King to get a drink.  We shared a Coke....yes I know, bad.  Then he ordered 8 chicken nuggets for a snack.  I didn't eat any, deciding to have a healthier snack when we got home.  I had some baby carrots with about 2 Tbsp of Sabra roasted red pepper hummus.  If you have not tried this flavor....you MUST.  It's like Heaven in a bowl.  Absolutely delicious.

I thawed some shrimp for dinner with no idea what to make with it.  We normally make shrimp po boys with them, using 180 calorie Naan bread that I get from the deli at Publix....but forgot to pick some up last night.  Dwayne said he wanted Velveeta Shells and Cheese with his....so I fixed that for him.  For myself, I heated up a bag of Steamfresh brown rice medley with tomatoes, onions and spinach in it.  Truthfully, I would have rather had the mac 'n' chz....it looked good...but I made the healthier choice.  For the shrimp, I just sauteed them in a pan with a little olive oil, sprinkled with garlic, Adobo, Tony Cachere's cajun seasoning and a splash of lime juice.

One thing I need to get back to is planning.  Everything works so much better with planning and prep, and doesn't work well at all without it.  I know that I am exhausted every night when I come home, and cooking dinner seems like the least appealing thing to me.  I need to cook some stuff up tomorrow to have dinners for at least the first few nights of the work week so I can just grab it out of the frig and re-heat.  Not sure what yet....but I've been looking at recipes on TJ's blog today at TJ's Test Kitchen, and think I might try a couple of those.  I also have an old Weight Watchers cookbook that Dwayne's mom gave me a few months ago.  I'm going to sit down and look through that tomorrow as well.

I drank about (5) 32 oz glasses of water throughout the day today, so my water intake is pretty good, and has been this whole time.  I don't think my weight involves any kind of sodium gain in that regard.  I think it's all FAT.  I feel pretty good about the weekend so far, because I know what I ate, while not perfect, was MUCH better than what the last 4 months have looked like.  I'm looking forward to another decent day tomorrow, involving some kind of activity, and some pre-planning and prep for the week ahead.  I'm also going to do my best to get back to daily posting here, even if it's just a short paragraph.  There really is very little free time at work, so maybe I'll starting spitting out a quick post in the morning when I first get there.  I'm always there a little early.  I think the daily posting will help me get back in the groove and help with the dedication of finally getting back in the fight.  :)


  1. I am big on doing what you can do for the rest of your life...but not pretending it won't be different than what got you fat. lol. This last month I gained around 2 lbs...I spent a week not counting calories and not exercising because of illness and it took me a while to get back in the swing of things..plus I overate.
    But the thing was...I was aware of what I was doing and was not surprised when I stepped on a scale and recieved my 'prize'. But it's back to what I was doing before.
    IF weight watchers is what you can do, than I say go you! Even being mindful of what you are ingesting....at your weight...(and I know as I have been there) is a huge leap forward. I am glad you didn't close down your blog.
    As for what your BF eats. I find men tend to follow in this regard. Do this long enough..he will straighten out.
    Hang in there.

  2. Hi, sorry you're going through all this. I live with someone who goes through an interminable amount of junk food (essentially there is an infinite supply of chocolate, chips and sweets should I choose to have any). It's really hard, I know what you're going through.

    All I can say is "good luck". Plus the work situation, work stress can induce overeating. I figured out what works for me - eating the same thing every day. (I plan to announce it to the world on my blog in a week). Obviously it's not for everyone.

    As Christine above says,
    Hang in there.

  3. That was a really long post, calorie counting can sometimes be a pain but if WW is going to work for you - I think it's good to try :>

  4. I'm excited that you're giving WW Points Plus a try! After having sworn I would never join WW again (too discouraging), I checked out the website right after Thanksgiving and saw they were massively re-vamping the points plan. Although I'd had tremendous success on WW plans prior to points, the regular points plan never worked for me because I always felt like I was starving.

    But I love the new Points Plus Plan! It will be fun for me to check in and see what your thoughts are about it. Good luck!

  5. I think for me, planning is the key. I always make my lunch for the next day after dinner and I grab it and go in the morning.

  6. Hi Tammy! I'm so glad you finally got a chance to write all this stuff out and just dump it. It was great to read every word. I know it's been a tough 1/2 year for you, and sometimes it just takes time to finally get sick and tired of being sick and tired. I also love your courage for just admitting all this stuff here - I need to do the same and perhaps I will do the same later today or in the morning.

    I really like the WWP+ program and am glad you're doing it. I've stopped going for the weigh ins and have just been weighing in weekly on a good scale that a company sent be because of my blog. With the calculator and the booklet, you have everything you need to do it and to succeed! There are other great WW blogs that I'll send you the links to - I've gotten some fantastic recipes with the P+ all figured out.

    It's just so good to read your post and feel the energy in it. You can do it - I can do it. And I'll be in Atlanta May 7-14, so plan on a meet up - at least one. I'll try to send an email in the next day. Hugs, and I'm thrilled for you that you're feeling ready - that's a big step.

  7. doing something...anything--each day is a start. Keep at it. Feel good about it. Then do a little more. glad you posted

  8. Set-backs are temporary. Giving up is permanent. Welcome back Tammy! Hang in there!

  9. So proud of the steps you've taken recently. Those things can seem small, but they help and do add up. The water, the food choices, doggie park! (do you think you could convince Dwayne to park 1/4 mi away next time too? Maybe viewed as a little walk for Scarlette..) Like make that the routine, the norm for that location, kwim?

    Keep it up, gf, good job! Chrissy

  10. Sent you an email :)

    getting started again is the hardest part, after that it's easy peasy!!

  11. Good for you to taking the steps to getting back on track. I know what it's like to have a horrifically challenging job and try to be/become healthy and fit when some nights it's all you can do to pass out on the couch. Planning ahead when you can is a very good way to short circuit the bad choices that a lack of time can leave you with.

  12. I giggled at Dwayne being mad that there really was a parking lot because that is totally something I would have fussed at, too, back in my old life.

    I like your good choices. You are making changes that will be so beneficial in the long run - proud of you, Tammy!

  13. I'm doing Weight Watchers Point Plus too... sort of. The plan with my doctor was working well (straight calorie counting) that I've found it hard to switch over to Points Plus... and since calculators are backordered until Lord knows when, figuring up point totals is hard.

    It's just one day out of time. You can have an off day, off week, off month even, just be conscious of the choice you're making and get back on it. I'm right there with you girl!

    Let's get together soon if your schedule allows it.