Hitting the Wall

Nope, not a runner’s “wall.”  I’m talking about a behavioral wall.  A wall that underneath the behavior is really an emotional and mental wall.

I have hit this wall before. 

I lost 10 pounds.  Woo!  My sweaters aren’t tight in the arms anymore, which is a HUGE plus, since most of my winter wardrobe consists of said sweaters, which I wouldn’t wear tight, and which I didn’t have money to replace.  I also feel better.  I’m getting arm muscles!  Even better!

But then I just . . . stopped.

I thought maybe I needed a week off the diet and the journaling.  I thought that maybe I needed a week off from the whole damn thing, so I skipped 4 of my 5 gym days.  And I came back the next week feeling better, ready to tackle it all over again.

That lasted approximately 3 days.  And then I just . . . stopped.

I look at that little food journal, and I just don’t give a damn.  I look at my chicken for lunch and then go to the cafeteria and order mac’n’cheese (to be fair, the cafeteria at Disney does a PHENOMENAL mac’n’cheese, and I’m a serious snob about mac’n’cheese in general).  I drink 3 glasses of wine and eat an entire wedge of bleu cheese with crackers for dinner.  And some olives.

I write it all down, and I see that the numbers are not going in the right direction.  I just don’t care.

I haven’t been going to the gym.  I’m just so freakin’ EXHAUSTED, even though there isn’t really any reason for it.  I’m sleeping a lot.  I even started taking naps on my lunch hour and I NEVER do that. 

I read somewhere that if someone has gained weight for emotional reasons, that as they lose weight, they’ll hit certain weights that are associated in their psyches with certain events.  In other words, if you were assaulted when you weighed 150, and then gained 20 pounds, and now you’re losing it, when you get to 150, you’ll have to process that assault – because you didn’t really process it before.  You just covered it up (literally) with more weight.

In the past, I’ve found that sometimes that theory holds true for me, and sometimes it doesn’t.  But it’s true often enough that when I hit this point of NOT CARING – when that not caring isn’t laissez-faire, but has some weird determination behind it – I usually think about what was going on when I was last at that weight.

Last year about this time, I was this weight.  Last year about this time the guy I was dating – the guy who literally weeks before was talking about long-term stuff  – dumped me. 

By email. 

Yeah.  NICE. 

In the end he apologized, admitted that he straight-up acted like a jerk and did his best to make amends.  And believe it or not, we’re still friends.  (Mostly because that action was SO out of character for him.  He wasn’t – and isn’t – generally a jerk, which in some weird way made it hurt even more at the time.)

And I find as I write this that the hurt is still there, somehow still sort of fresh, more than a year later.  So I wonder if the NOT CARING is really a resistance to letting go of that hurt.  I wonder if the weight I’m at right here is a protective mechanism, somehow.  Because this feeling of not caring has a determined, entrenched sort of feeling to it.  Does that make sense?  As though there were a “man behind the curtain” saying, “WE DO NOT CARE ABOUT THE FOOD PLAN, DAMMIT.  HAVE.  SOME.  MAC.  ‘N’.  CHEESE.”  It’s different from a craving or a DESIRE for the food.  It’s somehow deliberately mindless.

But at the same time, I’m TIRED of replaying the boyfriend drama.  I’ve been there, done that, found the good in it, figured out what my lesson was, blah, blah, blah.  And I keep thinking that going back to it is like picking at an old wound: it’s scarred over, but if you pick at it long enough, you open it back up.  Which would sort of defeat the WHOLE PURPOSE, you know?  On the other hand, how do you know the difference between hiding from something and re-opening it?  That’s the sticking place for me.  I don’t want to open something that I’ve closed, but neither do I want to continue to hide from it (if that’s what I’ve done).  How to tell, how to tell . . .

Charlotte’s Experiment this month is to meditate.  I jumped right on board, but have not done it ONCE.  I wonder if this is part of why?  Sometimes when I meditate I resolve emotional shit a lot faster.  And fittingly, it’s when I have the most emotional shit going on (that I’m trying to ignore), that I most assiduously avoid meditating.  I DON’T WANT TO, I CAN’T HEAR YOU, LALALA . . .

So I’ve hit the wall.  I’ve hit this wall before, though, and I’m TIRED of hitting this wall.  So I have to do something different this time.  Maybe I’ll start with meditation.  (Especially since I really DON’T WANT to.  That’s usually my indication that something is EXACTLY the right thing to do.)

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13 responses to “Hitting the Wall

  1. Arrggg@!
    “Especially since I really DON’T WANT to. That’s usually my indication that something is EXACTLY the right thing to do.”

    Just when I had almost talked myself out of going to my fitness class tonight. Damn it! (I missed Tues & Weds. due to doctors and such, and now am really lazy and just want to go home and have a cocktail.) But NOW I feel like I have to go. Thanks. I guess. I needed the motivation.

    And I know my comment is all ME ME ME! Sorry. Still luv ya and hope you work through it! 🙂

  2. AHAHAHAHAHAAAAAA!!! Well, I’m glad someone else is dealing with this crap, too! Misery loves company and all that. 😉

  3. Well, if misery loves company, I’m in the right place!! Because I am in the same place as you. I’ve hit the wall so many times, I’m getting a permanent bump on my forehead!

    I’m cheerier today though, so that’s gotta count for something, right? Of course, it isn’t helping me come up with something brilliant to help you climb over/get around/break down the wall…..

    You could always come and visit my blog and see my fabulous meditation picture…. (and the attendant hysteria involved with having my picture make it on to television…)

  4. I’ve definitely hit a weight wall. One step forward, two steps back. Or maybe three.

    But it’s frustrating me. I wish I didn’t care. I wish I didn’t worry about every calorie and every 1/4 mile that I run and whether it’s uphill or down.

    I guess misery goes both ways 😦

  5. I can so relate to “hitting the wall.” I get thisclose to where I want to be with something and it’s almost like I self-sabotage. For no explainable reason! Although your explanation of weight correlated with different emotional triggers was something I’d never thought of before. I must ponder on that.

    Well, I’m off to meditate for a couple minutes and then go to bed. Just TWO minutes – do it with me, girl:)

  6. Oh, BL – I came, I saw, I LOVED – what a great picture! And how exciting that you made the news! 😀

    Harriet, doesn’t misery ALWAYS go both ways? 😉 Especially for those of us that are COMPLETELY neurotic! HA! Have you tried Intuitive Eating? Honestly it helped SO MUCH with my ED that I can’t recommend it enough. The catch (isn’t there always one?) is that you have to do it long enough to get PAST the fear of bingeing. Easier said than done, I know. 😉

    Charlotte, I did TEN WHOLE MINUTES tonight! More on that in tomorrow’s post! 😉

  7. That’s a really interesting theory, but I am wondering if the reason for your weight wall could be slightly different? How flexible have you made your goals? Are you putting too much pressure on yourself to lose weight, ot perhaps restricting your diet to a very small number of food groups. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Dieting is the worst way to lose weight, walls like this could well be from the emotional pressure involved in dieting and judging too much of your self worth on the progress you are making in that area of your life. {{hugs}}} Might explain the tiredness too, if you have been over restricting.

    Lola x

  8. Lola, I LOVE you. 🙂 Is it weird that when someone worries a little, it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside? (Actually, yes, that’s TOTALLY weird, isn’t it? LOL) But I’ve not been doing this neurotically at all. And honestly, I’m more likely to binge than starve. I’ve never been very good at starving (except for a time in college, when I lived in an environment that was very conducive to it). But I’ve DEFINITELY not been over-restricting. I’ve just been trying not to eat so much crap, LOL. And the tiredness is always my psyche’s first line of defense when I don’t want to deal with something, which is why I’m thinking it might be an emotional thing more than a physical thing. Does that make some sense?

  9. It’s so cool that you are actively looking at what’s going on and writing honestly about it and trying to process. So many people would just try to blank it out and pretend it wasn’t happening.

    It’s great that you’re still staying accountable too. I suspect that bit by bit you’ll start making healthy choices again. Or who knows, maybe it will hit you all of a sudden. But the fact that you’re staying so engaged and not just burrowing into nice comfortable denial is a really healthy thing!

  10. We are our best saboteurs. We have all the power. We make funky choices at times. I blame my bad choices on my inner critic, Harriet. She is nasty and doesn’t always have my best interest in mind. In fact, she never thinks of me except in the worst light.

    And speaking of funky … mac n cheese?

  11. I agree with Lola. I think you’re rebelling, maybe you’re putting more pressure on yourself than you realize. My thoughts would be to stop giving yourself a hard time, maybe eat something you like a bit more than chicken, but perhaps less extreme than mac-n-cheese, and take a relaxing walk if you can’t get yourself to the gym. I occasionally go into a holding pattern where I go into a cautious maintenance mode and take care of my head. This at least keeps me from gaining anything back, and stops my spinning out of control. This is much easier than it used to be.

    And I’m very familiar with bringing lunch and buying something else instead. This was when I was trying to force myself to eat no-fat/low-fat “healthy” food. Now I eat low to moderate fat and I’m much happier. Be nice to yourself. Do you ever do yoga? That seems as good for the psychological state as for the body, and it feels good.

  12. Another way to mitigate damages, if it’s an option, would be to eat a large salad, small mac-n-cheese? That’s another coping mechanism, I eat anything, but even more vegetables.

  13. Hey Crabby – LOL, I have to admit that the only reason I’m willing to stay accountable to myself is because the alternative has proven to be worse! Ha! But I’m definitely ready to be done with this carousel, and the only way I’m going to get off the ride is to keep paying attention, you know?

    POD, DEFINITELY mac’n’cheese! So. Good. For serious. 😉 (I have a recipe that I’ll post on the cooking blog eventually.)

    Julie, I’m definitely not restricting, although I will admit that I’m probably putting too much pressure on myself, regardless. Erm. Not that I have a history of that or anything . . . NAAAAHHHHHH. 😉 And the mac’n’cheese thing is weird: it’s almost like a controlled binge, if that makes sense. Only it’s ongoing. That’s part of what makes me think it’s emotional. But you are now the 2nd person to mention yoga to me in the last couple of days, so I guess I should drag my yoga DVD back out. I used to do it a lot, and it really did help with my state of mind.

    And I really like the bit about eating salad or something FIRST. I could probably swing that, and it would help a lot.

    Lots of stuff to think about. I’ve been meditating, and that’s interesting, too. THAT will be tomorrow’s post. 😉

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