This whole eating thing started out as a diet, then went to an empowered stance against the whole dieting industry, then turned back into a…diet.
I’ve become really neurotic about food. And although yesterday I had 1750 calories and about 60 carbs (vegetables included), I’m gaining weight.
How do I know I’m gaining weight? The last pair of pants that fit me after the miscarriage no longer fits me. I don’t dare weigh myself because I am already getting pretty neurotic, and that number on the scale is likely to get really overwhelming for me. I don’t want to “feed” the neurosis, if you will.
Where I Intended to Go
Here’s what I want:
I want to be able to have food be no big deal. Like it was last summer and fall. I was eating, but not acting like a total spaz about it. I ate healthily, but with treats. I never want to count calories. I want there to be harmony between my mind and body.
I want to exercise because it’s good for me and because it helps manage weight, not because I feel guilty about something I ate, or because I feel so nervous about weight gain that I need to run off the energy. I don’t want to invite injury with lots of running (been there, done that) or have to join an expensive gym unless they have awesome dance classes.
I want to go shopping for pants and fit into a 16. I’ll take 16. 14 or 12 would be nice, but I’ll take 16. 18’s no good. I don’t want to keep gaining and gaining throughout my lifetime. I’d like to weigh under 200.
I want my skin to keep looking healthy, because I think that’s a sign of good nourishment. Plus, I’m proud of having good skin. I may struggle with weight but my skin and hair are awesome.
What I have attempted to do to get what I want:
Atkins-style induction (<20g carbs), then Primal Blueprint-style eating (50-100 carbs) for about a week and a half. Three weeks in total. Lots of veggies, eggs, coconut milk, bacon, beef, chicken. Nothing processed whatsoever. Occasional alcohol. Occasional yam. Occasional rice. A bit of dark chocolate.
I’ve started exercising, a la Primal Blueprint. I think Mark Sisson’s exercise protocol is quite sane. I’m doing wall pushups and planks and squats. I’m doing HIIT once per week. That all seems like good stuff.
Where Things Have Gone Awry
Although I have dealt with weight issues for my entire life, I’ve never become eating disordered. I’ve always had too much of a sense of self-preservation. I get like, “Wait a minute. Why am I making myself crazy for this? So other people can approve of my body? Oh, hell no.”
But for the past three weeks, I’ve starved myself, induced heart arrhythmia, given myself some acne, low energy, and total anxiety - all in the name of weight loss. “Effortless” somehow doesn’t apply here.
And I can’t stop thinking about food. I’m thinking about it all the time. Should I eat this? Or that? What about this nutrient? What about what this person says? And let me also say that every single thing I read about nutrition and weight loss is contradicted elsewhere. I want to email one of these experts and bleat, “WHO IS RIGHT?? WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO?? JUST TELL ME!!”
I’ve become obsessed with food, to the point of major anxiety. Last night, the anxiety and obsession were really strong. I was Googling all about different diets, different people’s experiences. Paleo Hacks, Mark’s Daily Apple, and finally, the Perfect Health Diet. Feeling my arms, feeling my belly, uncomfortable in my body. Had trouble sleeping. Actually had to take a Benadryl to get to sleep. I am an awesome sleeper, so that’s not good. Not good at all.
Where Do We Go From Here?
Well, I’m going to eat more carbs, for one thing. Apparently there’s this Golden Chance thing that happens with low-carb dieting, where it only works once in your life, after which it doesn’t work. Okay, fine. I need a sweet potato, really badly. I’m going to eat one.
I read Perfect Health Diet, which advocates a fist-sized serving of carbs at each meal. In other words, um, normal eating. They also advocate reducing fat intake. What? WHAT?? That’s the whole thing about Paleo - you’re supposed to be able to eat fat! But it seems to be making me fat, so…I guess it’s worth a try.
I’m going to try to just chill the fuck out and be nice to myself and eat less meat and more plants. Although everything will still be a whole food, I’m not going to eat bacon and 4 eggs for breakfast anymore.
I’ll let you know.