I win.

Well, I won yesterday, anyway.  We’ll see about today at the end of the day.

Writing in my last post about walking that fine line between “food as fuel” and “food as comfort” turned out to be prescient.  (OOooooohhhh, look at me with the big words!  LOL)  I’ve been working on my eating habits (again?  still?  whatever.) for a few days now, and I’ve been adhering to a relatively strict diet. 

Yesterday the “buts” started.  “But I WANT it!  WHY can’t I have it?  WHHHHHYYYYYYEEEEEEEeeeeeeeee????”  I spent a couple of hours with the Voice in my head: “NO!  BAD!  NO!” before I thought, “Fuck it, I’m an adult.  I CAN EAT THAT IF I WANT IT.”

But I didn’t just shove it into my mouth.  I stopped.  “Self,” I said, “You are a grown person.  You can have those crackers if you want them.  Right now you’re trying to do something specific with your body, and those crackers won’t help with that goal.   BUT if you’d rather have the crackers, THAT’S OK.  You are allowed to choose a different thing.  YOU’RE A GROWN UP.”

“Oh.  Really?  I can have those crackers?  They’re not off-limits, out of bounds, FORBIDDEN FOODS?  Huh.  I actually don’t feel that good when I eat them.  Though they are tasty.  But . . . well, maybe I don’t really want them after all.  Thanks, though.”

“OH, WAIT, WAIT!  Can I have them later?”

“Yes.  Yes, you can.”

“You sure?  No take-backs!”

“I’m sure.  No take-backs.”

“Ok.  Then I don’t really want them now.”

I think I had that conversation oh, 3 or 4 times yesterday.  Always about stuff that I DIDN’T REALLY WANT.  I just thought I wasn’t supposed to have it.

And then, it was 3:00pm.  That is my personal witching hour.  And I wanted a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup from the snack bin.  I REALLY wanted it.  I ran through the whole above conversation, and realized that YES, I really DID want that peanut butter cup.

So I ate it. 

Just one.  I only really WANTED one.  I didn’t want two or three or ten.  Just one.  That was enough.

It was enough to KNOW that I could have it.  Knowing that I could have it short-circuited the binge voice, the starvation voice (that one’s sneaky: “Oh, look, it’s after lunchtime.  You could just wait until dinner to eat.  Just wait.”), all the nasty things in my head. 

And I didn’t eat crap after dinner, either, because I HAD MY DAMN PEANUT BUTTER CUP.  I didn’t want anything else.  I hadn’t been thinking about what I could or couldn’t eat all day, building it up (or down) in my head and obsessing over it.

Who knew peanut butter cups had magical powers?

(Well, I did.  Why do you think I like them so much?)

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12 responses to “I win.

  1. Love this post – I read the previous one when I got back from holiday yesterday and then got up to find this one – TRIUMPH! I think you’re absolutely right about getting the balance between food as comfort and food as fuel, but both purposes are equally valid and it’s counter-productive to deny that they are.

    I have that internal conversation too, all the time, although my comfort eating voice torments me with stuff like “You have to eat the cookie, because if you don’t you’re not BETTER and you’re letting yourself down and your family down…” It is really time I realised I don’t have anything to prove anymore. I need to enable a dialogue, like you did, and figure out what’s really at the bottom of it.

    Good work!!

    TA x

  2. Hi, I came accross your blog today. I like that this post is positive. And I definitely know what you mean about the internal conversations – the battles going on within your mind. I tried writing them down for a while so I could explain them better to people but it was too hard. They talk too fast and I ended up feeling like I was making it up anyway. I guess its just nice to hear someone else explaining it so I don’t feel so stupid. Anyway – I think I will check in on you blog every now and then if you don’t mind?

  3. Hi Emily – I’m glad to know I’m not the only one out there! LOL

    TA, you’re back! Yay! How was your trip? Yeah, I can see where the battle to live up to or not live up to others’ expectations would add a whole ‘nother layer of neurosis. That sucks. 😛

    Searching, thanks for stopping by. It’s nice to meet you! And yeah, sometimes it’s hard to explain to other people that I feel like I have 3 or 4 or sometimes 9 or 10 people all living in my head at once. (And that it’s not craziness making me that way! Well, ok it is, but a DIFFERENT kind of crazy, LOL.)

  4. Coincidentaly, I just found your blog today too… I have found the balance between really wanting something and eating just enough of it to satiate that feeling, and really wanting something, and then porking down a whole package cause no one is looking has been my hardest struggle. Most of the time, I can just have a little. But not always. It is a work in progress, but I’ll tell you this much – it is SO much easier than it was 1.5 years ago. Thank you for expressing something that really clicked so well for me too.

  5. See now if I ate a peanut butter cup every time I ate I would be soooooo thin because I HATE them. When I stayed in the USA for a year every time a New Zealander came over I would force them to try it and it always got the same result…. a face clinched tight so as not to spit it out OR they spat it out. Then I heard that americans also like peanut butter in Ice Cream. I just don’t get it. I really really really just don’t get it.

  6. GO YOU!
    (and I really didnt know that other people had personal witching hours. THANK YOU for normalizing my life)

    left ya a response but the short version? I dont recomment lunges w/knee problems.

    some of that is liability with clients must most of it is there was too much potential for injury involved versus any gain.

    wed do modified stuff and lots of water running.

  7. I sooo hear you on this…my bad time for some reason is around 10a.m….after breakfast but way too early for lunch. I love peanut butter cups, but fortunately can also stop at just one!

  8. Hi Sassy – welcome! Glad to have you. 🙂 I know what you mean about “porking down” a whole package. And the funny thing is, I wouldn’t feel bad about it if I really WANTED the whole package, but usually it’s just a compulsion. (Yeah, right – “JUST” a compulsion! LOL)

    Dan, that’s really funny, actually. Gotta be a cultural thing for Americans, then. (Strange how easy it is to recognize other cultures’ foods as “different,” but not my own!) Yeah, I love them. I even love peanut butter in ice cream. The funny thing is though, that I’m not actually crazy about peanut butter in general. I don’t like it from the jar or anything like that. Weird, huh?

    Miz, ok, OK, OKAY I won’t keep doing the lunges (since I’m getting a twinge-y knee anyway). I’ll keep doing squats with weights though, because my knees seem ok with that. I’ll probably go back to some dance-ier exercises (which I might write about, because I can’t be the only person with wonky knees out there). *SIGH* (Btw, the response on your blog? Made me giggle. :D)

    Missicat, aren’t people’s different witching hours funny? I can’t IMAGINE being hungry or having the munchies at 10:00am. I don’t usually even think about lunch until 1:00, but then it’s like I can’t stop eating. Not because I’m hungry either, but . . . well, I don’t know why. But it’s not hunger. Maybe boredom? I’ve finished all my work for the day, so now what? PEANUT BUTTER CUPS!!!!! LOL

  9. Mmm… I guess that came across sounding a bit weird.
    A whole Package of peanut butter cups is only 2 – no big deal.
    My weakness is ice cream, so a whole package is like an entire pint. Maybe a bit much for one sitting… 😉

  10. *giggle* OK, confession time, Sassy: when I think of eating a whole package of PB cups, I think of one of those bags of the mini-cups! There are 50 or 60 mini cups in there – THAT is a lot! (And I’ve been known to eat them all, back in the day.)

    But 2? Nah, that’s not bad. 😉

  11. This is a great post! 🙂

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