Tuesday, June 7, 2011

It's Weigh-In Tuesday, and I am not ashamed.

This weekend, I admitted to the lovely Alexa (from The Curvy Nerd) that for the last week or so, I'd been feeling kind of disconnected from talking about the weight loss here at Finishing the Hat.  We both have similar feelings about acceptance and shame when it comes to food: when we make choices that aren't ideal, the last thing we should be doing is flagellating ourselves.

When I am hard on myself for my choices, I find myself wanting to self-medicate (or punish) with more food, not less.  When I own what I eat, when I refuse shame, then it's not hard for me to see the very next choice as an opportunity to nourish instead of punish.  For me, shame leads to disordered eating (or the temptation of disordered eating.) Acceptance leads to moderation and genuine nourishment.

I told Alexa that, following a few generally-too-caloric days last week, I decided not to talk much about it here.  That malignant voice of shame was bubbling up inside of me, using words like "bad" and "stupid," even as I was working on patience and acceptance.  So I figured I'd put some distance between me and the choices I made, in order to fully embrace acceptance and stave off the shame.  And you know what? It helped.

So today I'm sharing a few choices I struggled with recently.  I'm feeling proud that despite which challenges I bested (and which challenges bested me), I'm still making great strides.

  • Over Memorial Day, we spent 24 consecutive hours at a two-day barbecue, during which I had about three drinks, three ribs, three cookies, and three chocolate/peanut butter/bacon truffles (plus a grilled sausage and a chocolate Zinger.)   I also made some nourishing choices. We brought fresh market fruit, which I enjoyed in moderation.  I snacked mostly on grilled veg and crunchy veg.  I had a slice of scrumptious veg-filled and parmesan-laced frittata.  We grilled some fruit which I enjoyed with a touch of vanilla ice cream.  Sure, we could have skipped the party or attended for a shorter time.  Sure, I could have brought my own food.  But I am not ashamed that I didn't. And I'm not ashamed about what I ate.  I had a lovely time with friends, I didn't agonize over the food, and when I found myself feeling less energetic for the few days after the party, I remembered how much I appreciate the kinds of food I typically eat, in the amounts I typically eat them. 

  • At Disneyland two days after the party, I found myself surrounded again by food that was less than ideal for me.  There are healthy options available at the park, and we were able to seek them out, although my portion sizes were larger than usual.  After you've been walking around in the sun for a few hours, it's awfully hard not to eat everything on your plate.  But the real challenge for me was walking past sweet treat after sweet treat.  On our way out, we were walking through the stores to avoid the parade crowd.  Right through the candy and ice cream shops.  I stood between the two (with a foot in each as though I was at the Four Corners monument) and thought long and hard about whether I wanted to eat something.  Finally, Tom told me outright, "you don't really want this."  And I knew he was right, so I stomped out of the store, and out of the park, like I was angry at him or at the world.  I wasn't.  I was angry at my food addiction.  But over the last week, I've tried to be patient with myself about it.  So my portions were a little too big.  I struggled with making a healthy choice, and I'm not ashamed.

  • In preparation for our dinner party on Saturday, I tried a new flavor for Cake Pop Quest.  I'll have the recipe for you tomorrow, but I've already told my friends that if they want this flavor again, they will have to make it.  Not because it was bad... but because it was so good, I don't think I could keep them in my house.  So far, I've had one or two of each of the pop attempts, and that's that.  But this new flavor?  As I mixed the frosting into the cake crumbs, I realized I made a little too much of it. And before I realized what I was doing, that little-too-much frosting was gone.  Yep, I ate it.  It was delicious.  And that's when I knew: coconut cake pops?  Not for me.  Too tempting to make, unless I'm able enjoy them in moderation.  And I'm not ashamed to say so.

These are the challenges, folks.  Sometimes they bite me in the ass. Sometimes I bite them in the ass.  But what matters is that every day, I commit myself to this life-long process of taking good care of myself.

And that commitment pays off.  The scale this morning?  It's down another 3.2, bringing my total to...
55 pounds lost. 

Thanks to all of you for your support.  It is much easier to do this, knowing you're here.  I hope that you'll take good care of yourselves today, and that you won't be hard on yourselves despite your mistakes.  We all make them.  And we shouldn't be ashamed.


  1. Good for you and good for Tom!

    Knowing you are working so hard at living a healthy life has been inspiring. It gets me to the gym when I don't want to go--I am up to 8 days in a row. It helps me make healthier food choices-- today I enjoyed egg salad made with non-fat Greek yogurt for lunch.

  2. I love your inspiration, and this posting really helps me today. I've made some bad choices a few times in the past week, and have physically felt awful, which made me feel emotionally awfulfor doing that to myself.

    Food addiction is hell. It really is. Unlike recovering from alcohol or drugs in which those things can be outright removed, the body needs food to live.

    Thank you for sharing your experiences. It reminds me that I'm not alone or a hopeless case.


  3. You're not always going to make the best choices, but you are giving yourself a little leeway where you deserve it and on the whole you are doing a tremendous job of rocking this weight loss! Keep up the good work :) You and Tom both look spectacular and I'm so glad I've been getting to see you both so often lately <3

  4. BTW Greek yogurt is the best ever.

  5. New Canadian reader here, found my way here from All the Weigh. I just had to comment because I had a dream about Richard Simmons last night and I know it was because of you and Kenlie! In the dream I was berating myself to him about my recent pathetic weight loss performance and he was being so supportive and loving I was actually sad when I woke up! I had never really been a big fan of his but I really respect how many people he has helped and now he has helped me in an indirect way as well.
    Also, loved the honesty of this post, keepin it real is always the best. We just have to find a way to keep enjoying life and unfortunately that includes finding a way to enjoy food filled events which are such a common way to celebrate in our society. Ultimately I think it is about balancing the good with the bad, the old 80/20 or 90/10 formula or whatever happens to work for you and obviously something is working with your recent loss.
    Keep up the great work, I'll keep reading and cheering for you!

  6. Fitblogger.ca brought me to your site, and very proud to say that I will be following your journey! I am on a similar path to go from 314 down to under 200. I'm always in search of blog buddies! Best of luck!

  7. I love that you share your challenges along side your successes. If you didn't struggle at all, or didn't share the challenges and struggles you would be superwoman. You are indeed a super woman but human and real and as most people know real humans have ups and downs, struggles and challenges.

    I appreciate that you chose to share the struggles of the past week along with the success super woman.