Saturday, November 19, 2016

Pain's Back

My knees have started to hurt a bit more at this weight (249-250) and I am considering how I might get to a healthier weight without re-triggering ED thoughts. It is a delicate balance. I don't think it will always be a delicate balance, but being so new into recovery I am extra cautious *not* to stir up the obsessive chaos in my mind that restriction brings. So far, just moving some of my snack foods into meals ("later" instead of "never") is feeling solid and calm. My weight is stable, a pound or two either direction of 250. My knees are making more activity difficult, even the activities I love like raking leaves and yard work or walking the dogs. So I am left to ponder: what's next?

I avoid thinking any negative thoughts about my weight, size, or appearance. I have accepted myself fully at whatever weight I am.  I folded and stored away any clothing that is too tight or no longer fits me. I have a calmness I have never experienced before, with no stress or emotion either way when I do get on the scale or look in the mirror. I enjoy this contentment. I am talking about a health issue though, so if my joints need a lighter me to be able to continue to function, that's something I have to address.

I have found I am eating a lot less sweets since changing my thinking. I have very few cravings anymore and NO obsessive food thoughts. I eat what I like. I eat small portions, 3 meals and usually 2 snacks a day. Since I am eating less sugar I know that *that* is not the pain issue. It must be the heaviness and pressure on the joints. How to reduce that without triggering? Without restricting?

Thoughts: I have been reading about intermittent fasting a bit. While I am not comfortable with restriction for long periods, I think it would be pretty easy and non-restrictive to shift my morning eating to a later time and my evening eating to an earlier time. Just having a smaller "eating window" might be enough to change my weight to a more comfortable level for my knees. I currently often have coffee at 6:30 or 7, breakfast at 8 or 9, noontime lunch, dinner at 6 or 7, and a snack at 10. I am not that hungry in the mornings so some days I just have coffee until lunch time. I think I will shift my breakfast/lunch to around 10 or 11:00 and move dinner to 5:30 or 6. I'll see how it feels to skip the bedtime snack which is often just something small anyway. That would give me a 7-8.5 hour eating window. That, along with asking myself more often "Do I really want this pasta? Or would spaghetti squash be just as good?" or adding more low carb veggie options that are just as satisfying as grain based choices, could be enough to shift the balance back toward a healthier weight. This is also not restrictive because if I want the pasta or toast I will still have it, but if a lower carb option sounds good I will do that. I just need to get back into the habit of having those lower carb choices available.

I'll start taking my joint supplements again this week (fish oil, turmeric, ginger, MSM, glucosamine, and chondroitin) and that will help as well. Looking forward to improvements this week!


MaryFran said...

I can always tell when I reach a certain point in the knees ache! I'm at that cusp...grrr!

God luck finding the happy medium of cutting back and living a life without an obsession! This journey is so difficult!!!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry you're in pain! I know you want to be cautious about restricting, but to share my personal experience -- I am very carb sensitive, not just sugar sensitive. Over about 120 carbs a day makes me hurt so much, even if they are from healthy sources, whole grains, fruit, starchy veg, etc.

I've been struggling a bit lately and my carbs went up with it... and bam, my plantar fasciitis flared. I definitely feel it in joints and stiffness too.

With the holidays here, if you find the carbs impact your pain levels, just something to be aware of because they can be so high on seemingly healthy stuff, especially with holiday cooking. Potatoes are a big culprit for me.

Lyn said...


yes, seems like there is a point where damage is being done. So far I feel so much better mentally and emotionally about food/weight. Surely there is a way to get to a lower weight without diet, obsession, restriction. That's what I am working out! It's like a puzzle. Taking it slow.


I sure agree about the carbs. I think I am at a point now where carbs are starting to not appeal to me... much like sugar "tastes like pain" because when I look at it, I immediately associate it with joint pain. I think carbs are going the same way: not restricted by some "diet" but not desirable, even when available, because I would rather not hurt.

Anonymous said...

Carb anon again. That is really great that you're getting to a place where the negative association with certain foods makes you naturally not want them. I still badly want those foods at times, even know intellectually I know they will make "future me" feel awful. The intellectual-emotional connection hasn't happened for me yet, even after years, a few rounds on the yo-yo, and now a massive loss (49 BMI to 26 BMI) that I'm working on maintaining.

Did you do anything, other than just not restricting, to help create that connection? I'm thinking of things like journaling when you have pain to find the connection, scientific reading to find an explanation, etc. I just wonder if there is anything I can do to try to make those foods less appealing so I don't have to use willpower as much.

LHA said...

Your post was interesting. There is definitely a point for all of us when health issues force us to look at our weight and....sigh....have to try to do something about it or continue suffering. I just had an appointment with my nutritionist who has been helping me with disordered eating for some time now. We talked about intermittent fasting, which I have been using successfully for the past year or so. She doesn't object to it from a nutritional point of view as long as I am eating enough overall and eating the right foods. She agrees it has been helpful. I developed my eating plan without thinking about intermittent fasting, and in fact didn't really understand what it was. I just started to try to eat only when I was really hungry. I am not now, nor will I ever be, hungry in the morning. Period! I could be starving at bedtime and wake up feeling perfectly satisfied and have been that way my whole life. So, following my natural instincts about when to eat, I started eating in the 10 AM-noon range when I first started to feel hungry. I eat breakfast, I just don't eat it when I first get up. This has cut way down on my eating in general. MANY times I followed diets or weight loss advice that say breakfast has to be eaten when you first get up to avoid overeating during the day and it sure never worked for me. Just made me eat more, actually. So, again following my natural hunger signals I usually eat again sometime between 4-6 PM, and that's it for the night. I eat a good protein source at both meals and I avoid sugar almost entirely and limit carbs somewhat. I drink plenty of water and exercise 3-6 days a week. So, once I started reading more I realized that I was in fact doing an intermittent fast just by eating only when I got hungry. If I do have a non-hunger food craving it is usually at night and I do just what you were talking about...delay the eating. I have sometimes had a low carb dessert for my first meal of the day because it was a holdover from a non-hunger craving of the night before and that's fine. I don't know if this will help at all, but it has helped me so I am passing it on for what it's worth. It's a delicate balance to lose weight without restricting too much. Wish you luck!

Nancy at maddalee™ said...

I did IF, have for years and commented here about it several times. Americans eat more often than many countries and never think to question it. I find that time I used to spend prepping and eating food has become more time I spend on my life. And if there are days I eat more with friends and family, cool...I'm free to do that. Also, the fasting eliminates insulin surging all day long.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of health issues, I just wanted to share something. Recently, I have been diagnosed with an inner ear condition. The treatment (the ONLY treatment) is to keep sodium intake under 1,000 mg per day. Just using this simple guideline, which I am now basically being forced to do, my eating has improved tremendously. I don't count anything else. Just sodium. Because fresh fruits and veg and lean meats are naturally low in sodium, I find myself filling up on them and of course, I still eat bread and whatnot, but I have to be more careful with counting. It takes some things completely off the table for me. I'll never eat takeout again, or fast food or even a pizza from a takeout. Restaurant food is severely limited now and I'll probably become one of those people who brings a dish to share when I go to parties, etc. If I do eat too much sodium, I will feel the effects dramatically and be very sick. I feel like I've been given a WLS surgery in a sense. Anyway, I just thought I would share. Good luck to you, I hope your pain subsides.

Lyn said...

carb Anon~

yes, it was definitely NOT willpower at all. I always do reading and research but no, the only journaling I do is here on my blog (which helps!). The thing is, this is a 100% total mind change. See, if you are not restricting you don't need any willpower, because you literally and honestly allow yourself to eat whatever you would like to eat. No worrying, no wondering if you "should" and no guilt. Eat it, move on. Over time this really changed my thinking and took all the emotion out of food, weight, and diet. I will write more about this on my blog soon.


that sounds like a good, healthy, reasonable way of eating! I am seeing my endocrinologist today and plan to ask what she thinks of IF as well. Plus should get my A1C done again.


Thank you for planting the seed of that idea here when you commented before. It makes sense to me and I understand the "more living" aspect of less eating (Medifast did that for me as well... I suddenly had way more hours in a day to do what I wanted!)

last Anon~

that's really interesting. Sometimes a health issue does force us to restrict (HAS to happen). I am hoping I won't get to that point with something forcing my hand on this. I know I am at a point something needs to change but hope I have the time to let it happen at a gentle, non-stressful pace. I hope your condition stays resolved with the sodium restriction.

Anonymous said...

You inspire me that my situation is not unfixable. I am starting to believe my life is not ruined forever by my chronic cyclic dieting and weight loss-gain yo yo-ing. I want off this hamster wheel. Seeing you get off it gives me hope. Thank you, and also for sharing guidance of how to do this for myself.

Amy said...

Could this be a side-effect of the Hashimoto's? Also, the bike is awesome at strenghtening the supporting muscles for the knee, and helping with any tracking issues you may be having with. Hope you feel better!

Anonymous said...

Hope the supplements help you. Knee pain even during pleasant activities is no fun. Hm, might physiotherapy help? It is often recommended to strengthen the muscles surrounding the joint with strength training so they can protect the joint better. I am starting a regular exercise practice myself. So far, I am at once a week but I hope to go again this Friday...

Anonymous said...

Hi Lyn I'm the Anon who wrote about the sodium. Thanks for your kind message back X