Sunday, September 14, 2008

How I Blog, and Update

The ever-lovely and insightful MizFit left a comment-question on my last post. She said:

"whoa. its reading posts like this which put me in awe of the way people use words.I wonder if this simply poured out of you or if it was a herculean struggle to write until it became what you published."

People have asked me this before. So let me tell you how I blog.

I sit down and I go, "hmmm, what could I write about today?" Sometimes, I actually have something in mind to write about. I might see someone that sparks a thought (like my friend's sister in the last post), and other times I just start writing. But my "method" is pretty much to type as fast as possible, letting my thoughts spill out on the paper (screen) however they come out. The words just flow out of me. When I am done typing, I do a spell check, and I read it one time to see if I made any grammar mistakes, but I almost never edit what I wrote. I click "publish post" immediately. That way my posts are more natural, and are more of what I REALLY think and feel. If I try to go back and edit, I start wondering, "should I cut this out" and "what will people think?" and then my post will end up being artificial. So I just post it and hope for the best. You get more raw emotion that way, I guess.

Now for the update. Not a pretty sight here. Once again as I sat down to write this I thought, "urg, maybe I will just not mention weight or food, and just ignore it, and post about it when I have something more inspiring to report." But from the beginning this blog was not about impressing anyone or glossing over the hard parts of weight loss. It's about reality. It's about understanding how hard this journey can be, WHY people get fat, and WHY people have such difficulty losing weight and keeping it off. So, as always, in the interests of honesty, here's the update.

I gained eight pounds this week. Ridiculous. I gasped when I stepped on the scale this morning...230 pounds. I felt this hot flush come over me. Good god, how did this happen? I stepped on and off and on and off, thinking, "what about ALL those times this week I said NO to something I wanted to eat? What about that second slice of pizza I turned down? The Big Mac meal I said NO to? The time I got sugar free iced coffee instead of regular? All the water I drank and produce I ate? I ate a healthy, on-plan breakfast EVERY day. What about the skim milk I use instead of regular, and choosing to give the cookies to my kids instead of eating them myself? What about yesterday, when I went to the Farmer's Market and they had VENDORS set up there with fresh, hot churros and corn dogs and Philly Cheese Steaks and I did not eat ANYTHING there??" I felt so upset. I mean, if I made all those GOOD choices and still gained EIGHT pounds, can you imagine if I had NOT made those choices?? Would I have gained 12 or 15 pounds in a week? Maybe. It has happened to me before. And considering that I weighed 214 pounds only 5 1/2 weeks ago, it isn't hard to understand how easy it is to regain weight.

Now I am not making excuses. I did not stick with my plan. That's true. I only biked one time this week, and walked outside twice. I think I lifted weights once. Obviously that is not enough exercise. I ate about ten Oreos one day. I had a half can of Pringles with my sandwich. I may not have eaten a Big Mac meal, but I DID get a Happy meal and ate the burger and fries out of it. I also ordered pizza last weekend, and made other poor nutritional choices sometimes. I did not gain 16 pounds in 5 weeks by eating fish and vegetables. I probably ate 2200 calories a day, on average. Far from my old binge days of 5 or 6 THOUSAND calories a day. (And yeah I am aware of the whole theory that you can't gain x pounds in one day or whatever, that it all has to be water and bloat etc, but HELLO, this is real, and I am on the fast track to regaining ALL my weight if I do not change my behavior! I simply cannot eat 2200 calories a day without ballooning back up the scale, and FAST!)

So for those of you who have experienced this type of fast regain: yes, it is real, it can happen, you are not crazy. Its happened to me before. It's the main reason why I never could keep off the weight I lost before. When it takes you 4 months to lose it and 5 weeks to regain it, it is easy to get behind and get frustrated FAST. It is easy to give up and say, "this is impossible. I am just going to eat." It is easy to look at the pounds and decide you do NOT want to work so hard just to get back to where you were months ago. But you know what? You have to keep going, or you will end up right back where you started AND THEN SOME. Seems like people always go higher in their weight when they regain. Don't wanna go there. Right?

So I give myself the same talk I have been giving myself for a month. "Time to get back on track. Time to get strict. Have to eat right and exercise. No more screwing around." And while it DOES get old if you keep telling yourself this over and over, and keep slipping up, what's the alternative? Get fat again? Not something I am willing to accept.

I have to be kind to myself and not beat myself up over this. I was sick all week. And one of my kids, he had a minor emergency. He got a large, sharp object thrown at him by a neighbor kid (he was just "having fun" @@) and this object became deeply embedded in his arm, wedged between his wrist bones and scraping his tendon. It took the ER people 3.5 hours to cut this thing out. His arm is a mess, he is on antibiotics, and I have to take him in today for a re-check. And the little squirrel baby, I was up with him every couple hours feeding him for a week, but then it became pretty obvious he had some kind of damage from falling from his nest. He was having seizure-type activity. None of the usual rehab efforts helped, and he finally passed away. Poor baby. It really tore me up inside. I cried all day. And then there was this dog who came and ate 3 boards off my backyard fence. I dunno what is wrong with a dog, that would cause them to EAT wood, but there he stood, crazed looking, splinters falling out of his mouth and shards of wood all around him. Very strange. His owners are dealing with it, but still... it has been a very strange week for me.

That's about it for now. (Insert usual vows to eat healthy and exercise here). Catch you later! (NEVER GIVE UP!)

36 comments:

Shannon (Gale02 on 3FC) said...

Lyn,

Although it's hard, I for one appreciate your honesty. I did much the same thing late last year, gained back 23 pounds (of 63) in 3 months. I agree that it's sticking your head in the sand and ignoring it that becomes the real problem and gets us back up where we started... plus some. Although it sucks to re-lose the same pounds you've lost before, it's much better than the alternative.

You've proven once that you can lose these pounds, there's not a single question that you can get back down. If you've done it once you can most certainly do it again. Yes, it stinks, but it's not the end of the world. You are still very successful in your weight loss with 45+ pounds lost! Don't let a little backward movement let you forget the wild success of the forward movement you're still hanging on to.

Another thought... maybe now is a time to practice maintenance for a month? Although it's not your low weight, you can still maintain where you are and get your eating back on a better track without the pressure of "must lose weight."

You're doing a fantastic job, Lyn. Don't give up, you've come way too far to do that.

Hillary said...

First of all, thank you for your honesty. I have only been reading your blog for a couple of months now, but am relieved to hear someone else struggles as well. However, I think there comes a time when you have to stop doing what you're doing - because if you keep doing what you're doing, you're going to keep getting what you've always got: struggles, weight gain, the need to "start over" and get back on track. You need to find a way to STAY on track. For me, it's impossible to eat sensibly when I allow myself the type of carbs you eat. Substitute eggs and turkey sausage or a protein shake or yogurt for the waffle in the morning, salads with a protein instead of sandwiches, more protein for snacks instead of all the fruit, and absolutely no pizza, fast food, chips, cookies...none of it. A clean diet is the ONLY thing that will free you of the cravings that are keeping you in this awful cycle. Try it for 10 days and see how you feel. If you continue being honest with yourself and give this a shot, I believe it will help tremendously. Good luck.

sarah said...

i've been reading your blog for a while now, but i really had to comment on your post today. i'm sure you know that you're not alone in how you feel and how you're struggling! i lost 125 lbs over 18 months a few years ago and was about 20 lbs from my goal weight. then i gained back about 40 lbs over the next 6 months and i've been struggling to get back in the groove ever since.

gaining 8 lbs in week seems like a lot... but i've done it, so i know how it happens. and some of that is probably bloat... but not all of it. and it sucks. and it's frustrating. but like you said, "you have to keep going, or you will end up right back where you started AND THEN SOME."

so i'm going to try to make today a better day. and i know you will, too. and as long as we don't give up, it's all going to be ok!!!

Pandora said...

Lyn,

I'm sending hugs and good wishes...I know this has been a difficult couple of weeks, and I can see your struggles. For me, this period is the hardest. Getting on track the first time is easy...it is staying on track and getting back again and again and again.

I would echo what Shannon is suggesting, maybe telling yourself that you don't need to lose this month, you just need to maintain would make things a little easier. That way you could incorporate some off what are now off plan treats, and eat them in more reasonable portions. (Two oreos, less than half a can of Pringles.)

When I have hit plateaus I sometimes try to remember that whether I ever lose another pound I feel and look better than I did before.

You can do this. Thank you for your honesty and openness. One last hug for good luck!

Pandora

Heather said...

I think we all appreciate your honestly and real portrayal of what this is like. I know I do! because its real and losing weight/maintaining weight/becoming healthy is not easy and rather than gloss if over, you show it as it really is. anyways, I would just keep focusing on what you did right and keep remembering how much worse it could have been if you ate everything that you could have with all you presented during the week. as you know, the scale isnt all of the story, so look for your success in other places.

Tracey said...

Just because LIFE happens, it should not be an excuse to eat bad.

Watch your portions--you can eat good (eventhough pizza, oreos and chips aren't) and still gain.

new*me said...

I am so sorry that losing and maintaining is such a struggle for you right now. I didn't know 8 lbs in a week was even possible.......that scares the crap out of me! Could there be a medical reason for the gain? The amount of calories you consumed should be just about on target for maintaining not gaining?

I'm confused!? Have you ever seen a doctor to see if there could be a medical issue?

john - from fat to fit said...

I'm right there with ya - just have to go back and back and back and keep on trying. Alternative isn't good. Still, it would be nice to have a long run of success!

Lyn said...

Thanks everyone for your understanding and support! It helps keep me accountable.

Annette~ I have been to various doctors sooo many times. I've had the whole thyroid panel, blood tests, etc and they always declare my bloodwork completely normal. I didn't buy it... I was just sure something was off, but I got a copy of the bloodwork numbers and sure enough, everything looks fine. The doctors all have said the same thing: eat less, move more. I think my metabolism is just screwy from years and years of dieting on various plans. I have to stick with a simple healthy eating plan, with activity, to lose weight. I know I can do it!

Hillary~ I couldn't agree more on the "clean diet" concept. When I "eat clean" (no junk) it gets easier and easier to eat right. I am doing great today and have salmon planned for dinner... so tomorrow should be even easier.

Thanks again, all. I am working it.

Anonymous said...

I feel so much better after reading your latest post and all the comments. Now I know I am not the only one with this problem.Lyn if you can keep going then I know I can. This week I am going to try and focus away from food and tell myself there are more interesting things to think of eg good things such as the next book to read, sitting in the fresh air when work is completed, plan for something simple and special to do at the weekend etc. Carol

Karyn said...

It would be so easy not to tell us about a gain, but you "pony up" and disclose it all. This honesty is what keeps us all coming back here and is what will give you the eventual and final victory.

"what's the alternative? Get fat again? Not something I am willing to accept" This attitude will get you there, Lyn, I know it.

You are going through a rough time in your life - it is going to affect your weight loss efforts. That is just the fact. It is also a fact that you said "NO" more often than you said "YES" last week. You are strong and getting stronger.

I hope you have flesh and blood people around you that can give you the support that we, your cyber friends, would love to be able to offer....help with the kids, the house, meals, just being there. Since I cannot offer those things (I don't even know what part of the world you live in), know that I do think of you, pray for you, and support you in the only way I can.

Keep on keeping on.....you WILL win.

elife said...

I'm sorry you are struggling. You have so many challenges in your personal life right now, I can't imagine how hard that is.

Whenever I read of your struggles, I think, "She'll get back on track, because over the past year she's become a different person."

As always, thank you for sharing this with us.

MizFit said...

(thanks so much for the explanation. you are talented)
and I, too, am sorry your are struggling right now.
my struggle today may be in a different arena BUT I entirely get what youre saying/how you are feeling. you can do this. and you ARE doing it. and youre helping SO MANY along the way with posts such as this one.

M.

PaulaM said...

I hate to say this, but I have stopped checking in at the 3 fat chicks website and solely concentrate on your blog. Why? Because I think you are telling the real story. Not that I'm accusing people on the other site of fabricating you understand, but I never believed that some of them NEVER ever cheated, NEVER skipped exercising, NEVER craved junk. You are telling it like it is. If it were easy then none of us would ever have gained weight in the first place. I have to say I really resent it when I see others go about their daily lives and seem to eat only to stay alive. My husband is one of those. I wish I were, but sadly I'm not. Thanks for continuing to be real Lynn.

MargieAnne said...

Hi Lynn. You may already have this information but I thought it might help you to go over it again. It was written today by Kimmy on http://kimsrantingspot.blogspot.com

In addition I have read somewhere that there is genuine research that shows stress can cause you to gain, something to do with cortisone, hormones and how our bodies choose to maetabolise when under stress.

I'm glad you recognise the need to be kind to yourself. this has been an awful week for you. I do hope your son's arm heals nicely.

Take care and do your best to be on track today.

Hanlie said...

Real life has this nasty habit of derailing us sometimes. It's up to us to decide whether that is a permanent or a temporary condition. Looks like you've made the best and most mature choice... Well done!

Twix said...

I am so glad you haven't given up on you. That's excellent!! :D

Some dog, lol...wonder what would drive it to do that. Heh, sort of like us folks who consume mass of rice cakes....what drives us to such extreme. Poor fellow, someone shoild go pat his head and tell him he's worth it.

Sigh and sigh and sigh again. It does feel like beating your head on a wall. Why does it have to come back on triple fast...ugh. (((hugs)))

I have no doubt you and I will get back to where we were at out lowest point and keep on rolling down hill. Keep up the PMA (positive mental attitude)!

Twix said...

speaking of editing...hahaha I didn't, oops

and of thyroid, I have thyroid disease and wouldn't wish it on my worse enemy. I am so happy you don't have to deal with it!

Lynne said...

I have not been on the scale in 2 weeks for fear that I will see what it is I already know. I am regaining weight and it sucks!!! I am with you... I need to grab hold of the same handle with you and pull out of this...slump? WE CAN DO IT!! Right? We have to...

Bethany said...

Lyn, I'm still so impressed with you and with your attitude. I know you are going to be successful because you are so determined. I am really sorry for the week you have had--it's no wonder you gained with the kind of stress you've been under. I hope things settle down for you quickly. I'm cheering you on and gaining inspiration from your honesty, struggles, and successes!
~Bethany

Karen Lauria said...

Dear Lyn,

I love your blog and, like others have said, you really know how to perfectly describe the weight loss/weight problem/food issues and the emotions that tag along with them so perfectly. It's really great to read something so honest.

But in terms of your 10lb weight gain this week -- unless you've been eating REALLY terribly, I honestly can't believe that is 10 lbs of fat. I know personally, my weight can fluctuate anywhere from 5 - 15 lbs during certain times of the month, but I always "reduce" and get lighter and pjysically smaller after my TOM passes. Maybe you're just bloated or retaining water?

I mean, only you know how you've been doing lately, but it seems unlikely TO ME that you actually gained 10 lbs of fat this week.

Jesse said...

Lyn,

Bravo to you for telling the real story, even when it feels unfair or unflattering. Real bodies do real things!

I've tried to step back from what I think of as entitlement thoughts -- those "but I didn't eat a gallon of ice cream today, even though I wanted to!" thoughts. This happens to me A LOT, because I hate to be restricted and sometimes I miss the consequences-free eating style. But for me, I have to force myself to ask, did I take care of me today? No matter how many M&Ms I passed up or french fries I left on my plate, I have to consciously distinguish that stuff from the real taking-care-of-me stuff, which is drinking water, lifting weights, eating fruit, going on walks, all that other good stuff. It's hard! But it helps me to center when I can distinguish between the two sets of behaviors -- one is just ignoring unhealthy food, but the other is consciously choosing things that make me feel good.

Anyway. Thanks for sharing -- I love your blog.

DEBRA said...

Lyn
Like all the other commentors I want to tell you just how much I appreciate your honesty. You really do tell it like it is, and so many experience the exact same things you detail in your blog. Just keep to your plan, you know it works and think about how good it makes you feel to look down at the scale and see a smaller number. I know you can do it.

Pubsgal said...

Lyn,

Hang in there!!! Geez, what a stressful week! I hope your son is better soon, that's the worst when our kids get injured or sick. :-(

I think margieanne is right about stress and weight gain (or even weight freeze). I've had some greater than normal stress during the past week, and my weight loss stopped, reversed up a couple of pounds, then today is back down to where it was a week ago. (Partly because I made an extra effort to weigh and measure portions and to choose lower calorie foods over the weekend, since I don't work out during the weekends but do active things with the kids. I ate too many nuts last week, and while they're healthy and don't raise my blood glucose, they still have extra fat and calories. But then again, there have been weeks where I have done that and exercised just as much and didn't see a plateau. Just part of the complex equation that is healthier living, I guess!)

I'm glad for you that you're getting back on track. It sure isn't easy, but it feels good in a different way than, say, Oreos. (And believe me, I know that from a vast amount of Oreo experience... ;-)

Alexia@theonelastthing.com said...

What a week indeed! Hugs and hang in there. You are right -- never give up!

Ceres said...

Dear Lyn,
thanks again for all the wonderful posts that you write, you are inspiring so many of us. It's been a rough week for you, and of course there's no point beating yourself up for the wrong choices. You're still doing great, and the sooner you get back to the good eating habits you've established for yourself in the past year, the sooner those pounds will go away. As you say, there's really no alternative.

Once Upon A Dieter said...

It's totally unfair how easily pounds come back. It's as if the body knew what it was (ie BIGGER) and is constantly trying to get back there!

Fricken traitor fat cells!

Girl, I wish you and me and all of us with setbacks new mojo.

Hugs,
The P

Anonymous said...

Here is what I have found - when we eat an excess of food. You don't always gain weight within the week you eat it. Sometimes you continue to gain weight for days after you start eating healthy again.
I have found that I need to record every bite that I eat. It keeps me accountable. If I don't food journal and gain - I have selective memory of the food I actually consumed.

Thanks for your honesty.

PW

Dinah Soar said...

I feel your pain..you are experiencing what I did from 2003-2007.

Have you been putting your green and red X's on your calendar? As I remember it, that is when things turned around for you. I remember reading your blog and you lamenting as I had that you just couldn't lose weight. Then you started using the X's--green for days you didn't go over 1500 and red for the days you did, and you noticed a pattern...that you had more red X's than green...so you set your goal to have more green days than red ones...and the weight started going down.

I thought that was brilliant. If you've stopped that maybe it's time to start it up again.

ryry the adventurous said...

Dear Lyn,

It's taken me a couple of days to respond (I've been wicked busy) but wanted to drop a line of LOVE and YOU CAN DO IT. What a terribly emotional week you had. While yeah, I know, it's no excuse, there never is an excuse, but I just want to give you a pat on the back for being a great mom, blogger, woman, and animal lover. Even though it didn't all go your way, you were right there, in the thick of it, giving each of these situations your all. You are an amazing person, weight loss or no.

Heather said...

You've got a lot of blogger love out here. We're all rooting for you, cheering you on. It's like, if we know you can do it, we know WE can do it too! Get back in the saddle woman! We're all fighting it with you. Thanks so much for the raw, open, honesty you always give us!

Fattie said...

Thank you-thank you-thank you. I needed to hear this. I'm struggling and frustrated and you made a point that is so obvious now, but has seemed to elude me: "And while it DOES get old if you keep telling yourself this over and over, and keep slipping up, what's the alternative? Get fat again? Not something I am willing to accept." Regardless of my failures I don't have ever have to give up.

Anonymous said...

I am so encouraged by your story and hope I can follow your example. I have been a compulsive eater for about 10 years now and have gained 160 pounds during that time. I don't know if I can turn things around but I know I can't go on like this.

Lyn said...

dinah~ I have NOT been doing the red and green X's. I got tired of it, but now it seems like a fresh idea again. That may be just what I need to see.. a string of green x's that I don't want to ruin! Thanks for the suggestion. I will get right on it :)

Lynne~ hang in there girl! We ARE pulling out of the slump! It's time. Let's do it together!

Karyn~ sadly, the "real live, flesh and blood" support in my life right now is pretty much zero. Well, my kids, they are sweet but they will jump at the chance for junk food anytime they get it! No family around here besides my kids. I have a few friends who do say nice things and compliment me occasionally, but other than that, I am on my own. I need to change this, for my own sanity's sake. And thank you for the prayers and good thoughts!

To all of the other supportive, kind folks who left me comments... a great big THANK YOU and a virtual hug. We are not alone, not ONE of us. We have each other.

Shalisha Alston said...

Hello. I love your blog. It so resonates with me. I don't know about you, but I am a compulsive overeater and I completely identify with you. I had to go into recovery for this (what they call compulsive eating). They told me I was addicted to carbs and sugar. You know what? They were right. I was 213 pounds when I entered this free (god bless) 12 step program called Greysheeters Anonymous on October 28, 1998. Six months later I was 120 pounds. It has been 10 years and I am still in the program and I am just as powerless over food as I was on October 28, 1998. I have been able to maintain the 90 pounds easily because I surrendered to the program. I hope you are ok that I shared this info with you. You may visit this wonderful free program at www.greysheeters.org or google Greysheeters Anonymous

Love Shalisha

Jogos said...

i'm in :(