Disclaimer: This post is about weight. If you find this topic triggering or if it makes you feel uncomfortable, be responsible for yourself and don’t read it.
You guys are just unbelievably awesome. I always feel better when I pour my heart out here. I know everyone can’t relate to this but for those of you who can, I am so incredibly appreciate of your encouraging words and support.
If you missed Part 1, read it here.
I’m ready to make a change.
…to get rid of the small amount of weight that I’ve been hanging onto.
…to teach myself the correct amount of food that I should be eating.
…to hold myself accountable for the over-indulgences.
…without guilt from what I eat.
…without restriction from what I love to eat.
…without crazy obsession over every morsel I eat.
I have a plan.
But I’m almost scared to say it. Actually, I’m very scared to say it. Not because 99.9% of my readers have ever been anything but nice to me, but because this is something that gets mixed reviews in our little part of the universe.
I am going to count calories.
A lot of thought has gone into this. I’ve considered other approaches. I’ve weighed my options. But no other choice seems so logical, for me. I’ve shunned counting calories for years for myself because of the way I used calorie counting in the past to deprive myself of food, socializing, and happiness. I used calories as a control mechanism because sometimes I felt like my life was spinning out of control. Since coming back from that long journey in calorie restriction, I’ve made it a point to never go down that road again.
But things have changed.
When I look around, I see a very different picture of myself and my life.
- I’m not completely unhappy with my body and my size.
- I’m not unhappy with my life.
- I’m not trying to find some obscure way to control a part of my life.
- I am appreciative of the body I have and what it can do.
- I am mindful that eating enough is vital to accomplishing the goals I have set for myself.
- I understand and value nutrition so much more.
- I am set on having a sensible plan and sticking to it, not restricting more than the plan calls for like I have in the past.
- I am in a healthier place. I have unconditional love in my life and know that whether I way five pounds less or twenty pounds more, that will not change the amount of love in my life.
Ultimately, I see this as a way to get rid of some bad habits, better understand the quantity of food I need, and find ways to enjoy what I love but fit it into a healthy lifestyle. Rather than mentally berate myself for eating a piece of cake or say “what the hell” and have another slice, I plan to find ways to eat what I want and balance it out with healthy choices. Rather than punish myself for “bad behavior”, I plan to be kind to myself and my body by using calorie mindfulness to make the best choices for my health.
You say I should eat more because I ran 10 miles today? How much more? Like two pieces of cake more or a sensible snack more?
I like numbers. They make sense to me. I’m a very tactile and kinesthetic person. I need to see things. They need to be real to me. Numbers are real. I can picture them and how they fit into my world.
In my head these things need to be defined or else I end up gaining five pounds while training for a marathon. I know everyone cannot relate to this and that’s okay. This is me. This is my small problem. And this is how I plan to address it.
A brief summary of what my plan looks like:
- I’m using an online calorie counter.
- I’m using a program that takes into account how active I am. Not one of those “Are you sedentary or lightly active?” types, but one that actually lets me input the number of miles I have ran that day and encourages me to eat more because of those miles. <–This is something that was definitely missing from my past calorie counting attempts.
- I plan to try to eat the amount of calories that is recommended to me but will eat more if I am hungry realizing that it will probably balance out the next day.
- The calorie counter will be a guide, but not my bible.
- To use calories to help guide my decision making so I choose more plant based foods over processed foods.
- To use calorie counting as guidance of how much more I should be eating on days where I am more active than usual.
- To use calorie counting to help me make better choices during the weekend which is when I usually overindulge.
- To get more familiar with the quantity of food I should be eating for my body size, rather than going bite for bite with people who are much taller than me.
- To get to a weight where my clothes fit well and I feel comfortable (my happy weight), slowly and surely, that I can maintain without mental stress.
I am not thinking of this as a diet. Oh no. Because diets are short term. They are temporary strategies to get weight off as fast as possible. While I am using a strategy that will be temporary, I hope this will be a life-long learning lesson in meeting my body’s caloric needs in a logical way.
I hope I’ve explained my goals and thought process in a way that makes sense. We all have different paths and I’m choosing this path for me at this moment in time. While I hope to learn a lot from it, in no way am I tied to it. Ultimately, I’ll do what’s best for me, which might mean completely disregarding this if it proves to be too much. If I stick to my goals for both physical and mental health, I believe I’ll be successful.
If you have any questions, I am more than happy to answer them.