Why THIS Time is Different

I've had it pointed out, a number of times, that I'm quite focussed (this time) and it's really made me think; why is it that this time I'm not on a diet - this isn't something I'm doing until I get into whatever dress and I haven't given anything up? I can - and do - eat anything I want, I just want other things more than I want chips...but why? Why did it clicked this time?

I think there are several things in play:

1)It's not physically difficult to do the SW plan - it's specifically designed so you're never hungry, I'm a good cook so prepping food from scratch is a pleasure and I like a lot of fruit and veg.

2)It was just time - I've had an issue with my weight for my whole life, I was a fat baby, a fat toddler, a fat kid and, except for the year I grew 5 inches at 14, a fat teenager. I left home at 17 to go to uni and got fatter. I've fought with my mother about it (I know she was ashamed of her fat daughter) and it took a long time for us to redraw our relationship to where she didn't want to control my food and my weight (I'm pretty sure she still does, but I made it very clear that I didn't want it to be a defining part of our relationship and over the last year or so it hasn't been. That said, she's now my biggest cheerleader). I know that my family have always used food as a reward/comfort and I can remember stealing sugar strands out of the cupboard at nursery school, or extra cheese sandwiches out of the kitchen when I came home for lunch (my mother was too busy with my then-toddler brother to notice) so, while it's a common thing to say that subconciously food=love (or soothing), and it's probably got to the stage where it's a bit trite, it's also pretty much true in my case.

I got to where I wasn't fighting my mother over my weight, where my life wasn't held back in any way because of my weight (or not significantly, anyway - it is but not holistically) so I no was no longer subconciously rebelling against anything telling me I had to lose weight (I'm dited. If someone tells me I have to do something I immediately don't want to).

3)I found things I wanted more than food - real, tangible goals rather than the more ephemeral (and, to me, unimaginable) "I want to be a size 12/10stone". So - shopping in normal shops (Evans is expensive and not very good), being able "just" to get an XL top for my 2nd job and not have to special order the 2XL and still worry about it fitting, being able to wear sleeveless (or even just short sleeved) tops without having to be ashamed of my horrible arms, not being disgusted by every photograph taken of me (and there are a lot, because of my 2nd job. And videos that go up on the internet, it is horrific). And as I've gone on and achieved some of those (I can now shop in several shops, I didn't run screaming from the photos from our last event) I've found more - I want to be able to go to a gig and not spend the last half of it in agony from my poor feet, I want to be able to wear heels without the PSI crippling me, I want to get back into my lovely rings (and some of the more ephemeral goals I've listed elsewhere are connected to those as well).

4)I make it as easy as possible on myself - I always try to have a plan so that I'm not hungry and so that the "good" choice is closer to hand (bananas, mugshots and alpen lights at my desk, only small quantities of high syn things in the house and an abundance of lovely fruit and protein, that kind of thing), if there is a tempting thing (cakes at work, a night out with friends, etc, etc) I make a really big deal of saying no at the beginning (everyone now knows I'm a bit wheat intolerant, but think it's worse than it is, and as far as work's concerned chocolate gives me migraines) so it would be embarrassing to give in later (that's a stronger motivator for me than willpower!). That way I'm only having to say no once, not a billion times and that's a lot easier to do.

5)I look at the positives - the SW plan definitely helps with that (you must get in dairy and fibre, on EE you must get in fruit and veg); there are so many things that we should be consuming to get a healthy diet (a rainbow of fruit and veg, omega 3 bearing produce, etc, etc) and eating plans by their very nature make one focus on food, but it's much more mentally healthy to focus on the must eats, rather than the must nots (again, I get dited and kick back against someone telling me no, but I'm not going to undo all the good work I've done already because I only had one portion of oily fish this week, that'd be daft ).

All of that's a bit of a work in progress, obviously, but it's also mostly quite subconcious (which is why I had to write a novel to work it out!) and basically boils down to the fact that my subconcious "I deserve"s have changed from "I deserve pizza" to "I deserve to have nice arms and no heartburn, gimme a salad and probably a walk". Not to say it's always easy, because it isn't and I generally spend most of tuesday fantasising about the lovely take away I'm going to order after WI, but then I come out of class buzzed and don't want it (but if I did, I do generally have sufficient syns left from the week that I could have it and not do a horrific amount of damage, apart from eating too much food, too late at night and then having heartburn and not sleeping properly) and I both ate ice cream and drank when I was away, but because I know I physically feel better when I eat better, it's a no brainer for me to turn to those foods now and I do it automatically without feeling deprived (pizza is never as nice as you think it's going to be, frankly. Dessert is often disappointing), it's not a case of denying myself anything because all the other things are (more or less, anyway) now in place.

I think I have to do it like that - the other way is exhausting and I know from experience I can't sustain it because I'm battling myself all the time.

I'm still working to get exercise and self-maintenance into that sphere in my head, but I'm getting there.

One thought on “Why THIS Time is Different”

  1. All good stuff to focus on.
    My biggie for me on my most successful diet (after I had my three babes) was that I wanted to be healthy. I can honestly say I wasn't thinking of my bum, my clothes size or my double-chin but I was thinking about being a statistic and dropping down dead while my kids were still young.
    Now I've had my fourth, the weight loss is slower but I've not found a class at a time I can go to and the menu planning has been so much more tricky with feeding four little ones at the same time...

    I can relate to the issues with your mum. I was going to say that in my comment on your post on other people being negative but thought better of it. But, yes, I can relate.

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