The secret to weight loss

Monday, September 7, 2015 Permalink

I’ve finally figured out the secret to weight loss. Sort of.

After 30+years of dieting and not-dieting I’ve finally realised there is no secret. I’ve finally accepted I’m not going to be struck by some lightning-like realisation that will suddenly make me slim. Or at least eat, think and act like a slim person. Rather than someone obsessed with food, dieting, weight and their body. 

It’s not gonna happen.

For many losing and maintaining their weight is a challenge, but something managed by tweaking their diet or exercise programs. For others—like me, with long histories of disordered eating—we feel we’re far beyond that.

weight

My 2015 results aren’t there but let’s just say the pattern of increased post-diet weights has continued!

If someone tries to talk to me about low GI foods, or drinking more water (etc) I roll my eyes. I mean, don’t they think I know all of that shit?

Yes I do.

And yet… I’m about 50kg over what I’d like to weigh. (And over 60kg more than my ‘ideal’ weight.)

Long time readers of my old Diet Schmiet blog would know I’ve tried everything. Including not-dieting. Indeed I’ve almost been desperate enough to contemplate surgery on a couple of occasions.

Three or four weeks ago I hit rock bottom. I considered my options. Naturally they were all extreme. Surgery / shakes / hard-core boot camp. And yet I knew I’d been there before and had many MANY t-shirts.

I very much appreciate the ideology of Dr Rick Kausman and have written about his book If Not Dieting, Then What?  on a number of occasions. Similarly I’m a fan of Marsha Hudnall and her nurturing no-dieting, no-scale mindset. Not to mention Geneen Roth.

what you believe

There are many many studies offering reasons why dieting doesn’t work and I was reminded of this a week or so ago when a friend referred me to an article about a guy called Noel Dickover, who lost 100 pounds.

Losing weight isn’t always as simple as eating less and moving more. Logically (and perhaps scientifically) that’s the case (ie. calories in vs calories expended) however for those who’ve struggled with disordered eating, it’s often far more about our minds than our bodies. If I could I’d tell my 16yr old self to forget about what her head’s telling her; she should just listen to her body. She’s fine… just the way she is.

weight evolve rick kausman

So, after shitloads of money on diet programs, fat camps, health retreats and so forth I’m accepting there’s no quick fix. There’s no secret elixir. There’s no light bulb switch which will suddenly reverse 30ish years of anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating and dieting behaviour.

I don’t agree with everything in Noel Dickover’s approach. His focus on the scale and weight, for example, is something I need to avoid. However I love that he gave himself three years to change. I’ve often talked about Leo Babatua (of Zen Habits) who writes about changing and embedding habits, including when it comes to weightloss. #Spoileralert: The tortoise wins out every time.

I’ve finally realised that, the key to losing weight and making lifestyle changes comes down to a series of small decisions. Tiny ones. Some which barely register. One after the other.

It’s these I’ve been focusing on for the past three weeks.

It’s deciding you won’t pick up that chocolate bar when shopping. It’s deciding you aren’t hungry at lunch and you’ll just have a hot drink. It’s deciding that (when you’ve read until 9pm) you aren’t hungry so don’t need the cooked dinner you planned. Soup will suffice. And similar. Little decisions that some people take for granted. But not me. Not historically.

fine tune my eating

I’ve not been dieting. I’ve just been making a series of decisions which I hope have been for the better and which I ultimately hope will become habits, allowing me to focus my attention on other decisions. Rinse repeat.

And… though it’s a bit of a trendy catch-phrase… I’m trying to approach decisions mindfully. I’m not zoning out as I throw bags of chocolates into my shopping trolley or as I inhale a kilogram of hot chips without tasting them.

Small, barely perceptible steps.

Anyone who read my recent ‘you don’t need to tell me I’m fat‘ post probably got the hint that I was OVER this stuff. Big time. Tired of talking about it. Tired of thinking about it. And tired of doing nothing about it.

So I’m not sure what I’m doing, but for a change I’m trying not to make it a ‘thing’.

Do you think there’s a secret to weight loss?

Linking up with Essentially Jess for IBOT.

PS. If you want to win a copy of Sue Grafton’s X and Val McDermid’s Splinter the Silence my giveaway competition closes Thursday 10 September at 5pm.

69 Comments
  • Amy @ HandbagMafia
    September 8, 2015

    I think I’m going to take a leaf out of your book. Small changes seem far less daunting.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      I kinda like the approach of embedding a small change and moving on to the next one. Of course I know that’s not always possible!

      • CARLA
        September 8, 2015

        <3 <3 <3 LOVE LOVE.

        • Debbish
          September 8, 2015

          Thank you Miz Carla. The small steps reminded me of the WYCWYC concept! I even did a short walk today – just 10mins but that’s 10mins more than every other day over the past several months!

  • Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit
    September 8, 2015

    This is a great post Deb.
    I love “comes down to a series of small decisions.”
    I think you nailed it.
    Being mindful of every decision we make …
    Good luck!
    You can do this beautiful lady!

  • Lydia C. Lee
    September 8, 2015

    Meh – I know what I need to do to lose weight – just can’t be bothered doing it. It’s more about cutting out the junk for me…I’m terrible!

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Same Lydia. I was doing pretty badly recently. LOTS of chocolate, but I haven’t bought any chocolate or chips for 3wks. I was also eating hot chips several nights a week.

      I had some on the weekend (for the first time in the 3wks) as my mother was visiting and we had fish & chips. I know if it’d just been me I would have ordered a huge amount of chips and eaten them until I felt sick (as usual), but I suggested we get them cos she was here and I ordered less (than I would just for me!) and they were great!

      • Noel Dickover
        September 9, 2015

        Just a thought on this, I’m a very happy chocoholic. I NEED chocolate around me at all times just in case, but still was able to lose 100 pounds. But I have switched to 65%-70% chocolate bars. I also eat at least a tablespoon or more of fresh ground cacao daily in my coffee, yogurt and other things – its terrific for BP. I look for ways of switching out bad things for me – like Hershey bars or Godiva milk chocolate – with ones far healthier for me.

        • Debbish
          September 9, 2015

          Oh yes – healthy switches are great. I love hot chips and they’re a bad binge-food for me. I can eat a kilo and look for more… but I make fake ones at home (par-boiled then baked in the oven with oven spray). In all honesty I probably enjoy them as much as bought hot chips. (Of course I still have too many but cutting back on my evening meals (well, carbs!) is a step I’m yet to be able to make!)

  • Char
    September 8, 2015

    I like the non-deprivational quote. That used to be my issue with dieting. Feeling like I was missing out. Once I’d let go of that and accepted that I could eat anything I want (just not all of the food and all of the time) it became easier to lose weight and keep it off.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Completely agree on the deprivation thing Char. For me cutting out almost anything equates to deprivation… and ‘if I can’t eat that, then why live?’ kinda thing. Which I know sounds extreme but… when food is everything….

      And obviously deprivation is always partnered with bingeing in my little world!

  • Ingrid @ Fabulous and Fun Life
    September 8, 2015

    I totally agree! There is no big secret that all the various diet companies know and can tell you after you hand over your cash! “Small, barely perceptible steps” like you said is the way to go!.

  • Denyse Whelan
    September 8, 2015

    Wonderful post written with such heart & I sense a growing love for yourself!! Deb, you are not your weight..and someway somehow is will come to you as a reality too. Small steps but so what.. They take you on the same journey. Always up for a chat anytime.. Love D xx

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Thanks so much Denyse. Much appreciated.

  • Jo
    September 8, 2015

    Yeah, small changes. It’s true though- many of us who are overweight know the theory…some of us know as much as a trained nutrition professional. Knowing & doing are 2 different things when the mind gets in the way.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Absolutely Jo. I’ve often whinged about organised weight loss programs as they cater to the lowest common denominator and talk basics – like incidental exercise (take the stairs not the lift etc). I’m reminded though that there are people who haven’t been on the dieting wagon throughout their lives who find that useful (my dad was like that).

      Then there are others who’ve tried them all and know exactly what we SHOULD be doing… But alas…

  • Amy Andrews
    September 8, 2015

    God, its like we’re twins, Deb….
    I’m sooo sick of thinking about my weight every damn minute of the day.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Absolutely. I’m tired of making excuses and apologising for myself as well. (And that’s more about me than others!)

  • Jacqui
    September 8, 2015

    There’s a good ebook and Facebook group called Lean Eating – by Georgie Fear – that’s based on making little habit changes at a time. It’s been the most helpful thing I’ve ever found.

    • Jacqui
      September 8, 2015

      Actually make that Lean Habits not Lean Eating

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Oh yes, I belong to a few FB groups which I find useful. (One for recovering binge-eaters and those obsessed with food – which I engage in far less than I should!) But it’s great finding like-minded people and useful resources!

  • always josefa (@always_josefa)
    September 8, 2015

    I think that there is no secret to weight loss – or no magic diet – no magic work out plan. Just small constant choices that lead to a better lifestyle. Those small constant choices can be more challenging than any secret. No to a packet of chips to beat the 3pm hunger. Yes to a morning walk. No to a quick chocolate bar at night while watching TV. My life is a balance of the good and not-so-good choices. I see my husband struggle with this more so than me and it is tough – nothing magic or secret about that xx

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      It’s slightly depressing to think this is how it’ll be forever, but then I remind myself that ‘normal’ people (those who’ve not struggled with disordered eating) do it every day. They make small decisions about what they’ll eat and how much. I meant to flag that some of the pics I’ve used in the post are from these Empowerment Cards you can get from the If Not Dieting (Rick Kausman’s) site. There’s an app as well.

      Some of the others suggest that it’s normal to eat more on some days than others. That it’s normal to sometimes eat for reasons other than hunger etc…

  • Vanessa
    September 8, 2015

    For me, I’ve found if I can go for a walk in the evening it stops me from trying to find a snack. It’s not hunger, it’s wind-down/boredom type combination that makes me eat at that time.
    I did a similar thing a few years ago – I had a walk to work via cafes and bakeries and used to get something more often than not. Then one day I swapped my route and chose not to. Then chose not to again. Little things.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Absolutely Vanessa. I hate grocery shopping and the only times I enjoyed going was when I was planning a binge. I couldn’t get there fast enough if I was planning to buy bags of caramello koalas, chips etc… And then I’d have to go back a day later for more.

      I’d like to think one day the thought of things like caramello koalas won’t automatically enter my head when I go shopping, but not sure that’ll ever be the case. Hopefully I’ll just get used to making the regular decision not to buy them.

      Having said that – I’m not saying I’ll go without chocolate forever cos of the whole deprivation thing. Just small steps.

  • EssentiallyJess
    September 8, 2015

    Deb I really like your thinking. I’m not overweight, but I am over the weight I would like to be, and I keep thinking about that. Why does it bother me? What can I do about it? Do I really want to do anything about it if it means I can’t eat chocolate or drink wine? (Answer to that: probably not 🙂 )
    But I do like the idea of small changes when you can, where you can. Thinking more about food. Not snacking when studying like I do, and just starting somewhere.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      I’m the same Jess (re chocolate and wine). I guess it’s also about identifying the triggers (even for not-obsessive-types) – for you studying, for me it’s usually night time and I need to be watching TV (etc) at the same time.

      • Margo Finlay
        October 26, 2015

        Oooo! Totally the watching tv thing, or reading. Even if it’s the instruction manual for the controller for the tv…. It all seems to be part of the addiction; hand to mouth, hand to mouth. Do. Not. Engage. Brain….

        • Debbish
          October 26, 2015

          Oh absolutely Margo – they’re strongly linked for me. I notice I’ve been reading more and watching TV in short stints (over dinner or while I’m cooking) lately and wonder if that’s because I’m not bingeing – which requires great fanfare (around what I’ll watch at the same time etc).

  • Malinda (@MBPaperPackages)
    September 8, 2015

    So true, there is no magic one size fits all answer, wouldn’t it be great if there was. For me, it is just about smart choices for me and finding a balance between indulging and not going overboard. #TeamIBOT

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Ah yes.. choices and decisions!

  • Rita @ View From My Home
    September 8, 2015

    Just a word of advice for those thinking weight loss surgery is the magic bullet solution to obesity. It is daunting– in the U.S. requiring 3 support group meetings, and visits to primary doctor 2x, a cardiologist, pulmonary dr, nutritionist, psychiatrist, etc etc– about 10 appointments needed to schedule the surgery, then the pre-op tests and whatnot, an ability to prove you can lose weight *before* surgery, like 20 lbs. or so … then 1-3 days stay in the hospital. You will feel more awful than you ever felt after this surgery (and I’ve gone through childbirth, hysterectomy, and miscarriages..this was worse), the stomach pain, the bathroom issues, the nausea, lightheadedness, weakness… at home next, if you take in your liquid diet: protein drink, jello, water, broth, too quickly or too many sips, you will get cramps and nausea. After a month or so you will be back on regular food, concentrating on protein, fiber, and water, supposed to be exercising every day.

    I can play devil’s advocate here because my daughter and I had weight loss surgery. She had the gastric bypass, and I had the sleeve gastrectomy. She lost & has kept off about 85 lbs. but only eats a few mouthfuls of food a few times a day and has indirect health issues from it… but is so fearful of gaining weight that she has allowed her stomach to become tiny and not hold much in one sitting, nor too rich, sweet, fattening etc without feeling sick to her stomach.
    I, on the other hand, only lost 57 lbs. and 1 1/2 yrs. later have put back on 13 lbs. already. We both have unhealthy relationships with food that affect us in opposite ways.

    Sorry for being so very long here, but I just wanted to inform those reading here about weight loss choices, to put surgery as the very last step to take, and in the U.S. your insurance will only cover it if you have a high BMI + a serious health issue. I’m taking the negative approach here to cover both sides, as the ads on TV and magazines make it look effortless. It does work for many many people, and I wish them well. But for some, it might not. Thanks for the platform, Deb.

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Oh yes Rita… I considered lapbanding but the people I knew who’d had it hadn’t had good experiences at all. And some lost a little in the beginning and then that was it – similar to the weight lost on a short term diet.

      Thanks so much for sharing your experiences! xx

  • middleagedmama1
    September 8, 2015

    It’s a never ending struggle isn’t. I was watching a story on Weekend Today or some such, interviewing a doctor, who basically said your body will ALWAYS fight you when you are trying to lose weight … it wants to be whatever you were at your heaviest. He also said to CELEBRATE if you haven’t put on any weight, because that in itself is ridiculously hard given that our bodies fight us the whole way!

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      It depresses me when I hear reports about the very overweight and they’re (ie. our – cos I’m there) will have little chance of ever keeping it off.

      I no longer desire slimness, but even being what I was when I moved here would be a good thing now! (Back when I only had 10-15kg to lose!)

  • yinyangmother
    September 8, 2015

    I think the small approach seems really smart – there is probably always a leaner or healthier option and those moments of small decisions will hopefully add up to a big difference. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I got out of the habit of making our bed and I think it contributed to me feeling a bit out of control – like the house was always a mess and I was never on top of anything. We’ve recently put new wardrobes (those nice IKEA ones) and blinds in our room along with painting it and I’ve added a few luxe touches. Now I’m making the bed every morning and it makes me feel so much better and calmer. Small habit, big improvement in my mood.

    • Deborah
      September 8, 2015

      I caN relate to that one Kathy, well not the bed-making, but I’m a bit the same about clearing dishes after meals. Very occasionally I leave them in the sink instead of stacking the dishwasher but the places feels messy and everything a tad out of control. It’s usually a sign that I’m struggling in some way….

  • Jess
    September 8, 2015

    I completely agree that there is a big difference between weight loss and weight loss with disordered eating. I struggled for years on the anorexia, bulimia, binging, yoyo cycle. It was awful, like this awful uncontrollable obsession. Getting over that is 99% of the battle.

    Weight loss post kids etc when I wasn’t in a disordered frame of mind was much more straight forward.

    Small steps always are what gets me there, usually it is when I start walking more as part of my routine incidentally and just that one change makes a big difference over time. Not being in a rush and trying to be positive about other things in my life also helps. And new comfortable clothes for each step! When I am really hating myself in clothes then shoes. Shallow but it helps me.

    As you said you know what you need to do. The emotional aspect is what is always hard. I am at a place now where I can even be around previous trigger foods and be fine. It took a few years of avoiding certain foods though and moving to a different state.

    Looking forward to following your progress in all aspects of life! Xxxx

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Thanks Jess and am really glad you’re in a much better ‘place’ now! x

  • Beck @craftypjmum
    September 8, 2015

    If there is a secret to weight loss then like you sweetie I am yet to find it. My Dr says loose weight, I’m trying I say. His reply, try harder….think I need a new Dr zz

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      My doctor’s actually pretty good but I guess she knows my history and knows I know I need to do something. She was very zen about changing my habits and not worrying about the scale etc which very much impressed me.

  • OurParallelConnection
    September 8, 2015

    Oh Deb I love love love Rick…. I have his book and I saw him speak a couple of months ago. I have written about him and have a post waiting got be published… With teenage children, I need to teach them that dieting is not the answer. My big fear os the NEW Guilt eating – food is now GUILT FREE.. WTF?

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      The ‘If Not Dieting…’ thing was a surprise for me and recommended to me by a specialist eating disorder psychologist I saw in the earlyish 2000s. I read it then and it reverberated with me and then years later I bought it and revisited it. I guess the whole concept’s been marinating in my little mind for a while now… all while I held out hope for some quick fix. #alas

  • JodiGibson (@JFGibsonWriter)
    September 8, 2015

    Deb, I think you are on the right track. Little steps, tiny decisions, small changes. And starting each day as a new one. x

    • Debbish
      September 8, 2015

      Ah yes Jodi… very important to take one day (even one decision) at a time!

  • Maria @ Pastels & Macarons
    September 8, 2015

    Unfortunately it’s power of the mind and like you said changing habits. I’m struggling also. I LOVE junk food, sugar and anything naughty. I genuinely prefer the taste of bad food to good healthy food but I am trying my hardest to eat healthy and slowly eliminate sugar because it’s important for my health, I wish to live a long healthy life and I also want to look a certain way so I have to try and focus on that ideal look I have in my head. It’s hard, I hate it bit I find it a necessity. If I don’t see my body shrinking and changes in my body I get over it and give up. I don’t like fad diets or fast weights but I would like to see decent results within 12 months I think 🙂

    • Debbish
      September 9, 2015

      Oh yes… I would too – I think allowing myself up to 3yrs is more about achieving something closer to my ‘ideal’ weight by then. If I was in diet mode I’d aim for a 20-25kg loss by the end of this year, then goal sometime next year but if I can fit into some of my older clothes by this coming summer I’ll be a bit happier.

      I’m trying to tell myself ANYTHING less than what I am now is a good thing…

  • Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
    September 8, 2015

    Weight loss and then maintenance is hard work. I love what you’ve said about making conscious decisions because I think that’s what it comes down to. It’s so easy to reach for that chocolate bar or that bag of chips but it’s harder if you have to actually go to the shops to get them. I think we mindlessly put things into our bodies we don’t need and it’s easier to do that when we are stressed or bored. I know I do. A week and a bit ago I ate three-quarters of a bag of Kettle chilli chips while working on an assignment. I have now decided I’m not buying any chips till I finish uni!

    The secret to weight loss? Hard work and moderation. Yeah, I don’t believe in completely cutting out chocolate! 😛

    • Debbish
      September 9, 2015

      Same Sanch. I’m still eating pasta for dinner (ravioli last night) and might have mashed potato tonight. Nothing is really off-limits. I think I’ve got a long way to go on the mindfulness stuff. (eg. I had seconds last night when I didn’t need them. I paused and asked myself the question and KNEW I was only having them because they were there and they were yummy!) I think my first step has been to cut out the mindless bingeing I’d been doing. I’d stopped needing excuses and was doing it ALL OF THE TIME. And it’s like a drug. Suddenly 12 caramello koalas aren’t enough. You need two bags full etc…

  • A Q U I R K Y B I R D
    September 8, 2015

    Interesting about the weight increase over the years. I’m at the heaviest I’ve ever been (apart from pregnant) but because I’m writing more it’s the most sedentary I’ve been. So I’m starting with moving. Zoe

    • Debbish
      September 9, 2015

      I was going to the gym 4-5 days a week before I moved Zoe, so even though I still had some weight to lose to get to goal I’d seamlessly built lunchtime classes into my working days. My days were 11-12 hrs long every day (commute to and from work and work, so I put time in my diary EVERY day to go to the gym and tried to always make it). Now I’m home all of the time and have an endless amount of time and I’m not doing anything.

      But… I did a short walk yesterday and I’ve pulled my tres-1980s jogging trampoline out and am aiming to start with 10mins a day. I’m conscious that – until I can drop some weight -I’m really struggling to do much more. (Shin splints when I walk etc…) I kinda know when I get to under 120kg (for eg) the shin splints improve. (But that’s a long while off!)

  • Druimé N
    September 8, 2015

    Hear hear for small changes Deb. I hope they continue for you and I also hope you don’t beat yourself up for falling off the wagon once and a while. Finding a way to love the skin you are in. I love your honesty in your writing.

    • Debbish
      September 9, 2015

      Oh thanks so much. That’s very kind!

  • Noel Dickover
    September 9, 2015

    Hi Deb, Thanks so much for the link to my article. Regarding a focus on weight, clearly everyone’s journey is different. I would never describe my focus as being on weight . Aside from referring to it to myself through a “Getting healthy” frame (I think I’m more excited about getting rid of Metformin than I am the weight loss, for instance), I describe it almost exactly as you do:

    “I’ve finally realised that, the key to losing weight and making lifestyle changes comes down to a series of small decisions. Tiny ones. Some which barely register. One after the other.”

    But the specifics of your journey will most likely be very different from mine because we have different histories. Everyone does – to me this implies a one size fits all approach is bound to fail most of the time, and the data supports this. For me, internal awareness was the key, but you can still do the small change thing just as well with a quantified self approach that Fitbit and the like advocates.

    This is why I didn’t spend too much time in the article on what I actually do – including the foods I eat, how often I weigh myself and the rest. It may be that what works for me – scale and belt size – is a bad idea for some. But I’m sure there is an approach that works for you just as well.

    Incidentally, If I did, I would be writing for paragraphs about my love of cinnamon – that there is nothing on this earth better for gaining control of your blood sugar – or about fresh cacao for BP, Yacon syrup, ginseng, resveratrol, the various super foods I eat and all the rest. I know what worked for me, but again, I can only speak to my journey.

    • Debbish
      September 9, 2015

      Thanks Noel – I really enjoyed your article especially the early part about dieting in general and the ‘why’ it doesn’t tend to work.

      The focus on weight I mean was just around the fact that you’re still weighing yourself and monitoring weight loss. As I mentioned I have this long history of being RIDICULOUSLY focussed on the weight loss part rather than the getting healthy start. Even when I tell myself I won’t obsess I’m on and off the scale every time I go to the toilet the night before weigh-in and I’ll sulk all day if it goes badly. I’ve previously tried things like just using my pilates’ instructor’s scale once a week but then I almost stopped going to my lessons because I so dreaded the scale! 🙂

      I know in the past I’ve used other numbers (measurements for eg) which don’t seem to worry me as much. (Strange, I know!!!)

  • bakeplaysmile
    September 9, 2015

    A whole heap of little decisions lead to big changes. All the power to you!

  • Michelle Weaver (@pinkypoinker)
    September 10, 2015

    I think you’ve nailed it. Little things do add up. Two of my friends have lost quite a lot of weight this year. They still eat a lot of bad stuff but they’ve started up exercise in activities they really enjoy, like rowing, and have become so passionate about exercise. They’ve been a little bit more careful about their diet but they eat three times as much as me and I’ve lost nothing (gained it if anything). They have the attitude that they’re not going to deprive themselves and it seems to be working.

    • Debbish
      September 10, 2015

      Absolutely… periods of deprivation always end in bingeing for me. A few times I’ve cut out carbs I’ve then eaten nothing BUT carbs for weeks on end!

      Glad your friends are getting fitter and healthier. I’m yet to move forward on the exercise front, but making slow steps. (Kinda literally!) 😉

  • Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me
    September 10, 2015

    Hey gorgeous, sorry I’m been AWOL, just a lot going on. But my heart beamed when I read this post. I can feel the positiveness in that I haven’t felt in a long time. Gosh life is hard but I know that little by little you will make the changes. And I will too. I have just been eating to fill sad, tired, unahappy gaps, but today, yes only today, I have realised that it doesn’t make me feel better it makes me feel worse, especially the next day. And I might have BP problems to manage soon, test will tell next week, so I must get my eating/exercise in check! Big hugs my lovely bloggy friend, while I’m not always there you often pop in to my mind. Em xxx

    • Debbish
      September 11, 2015

      Thanks so much… and no worries about the AWOLness. Can relate. xx

  • Newcastle Stafford
    September 26, 2015

    Wow it’s like you’re inside my head. Don’t suppose you live anywhere near Newcastle?!! I’d love to start a meet-up group of like minded women.

    I too after 30 years of being either neutral or filled with despair about weight have come to the same realisation about small habits one at a time that add up to a healthy life.

    I’ve also realised that not many people in my life truly understand disordered eating….

    Shauna

    • Debbish
      September 26, 2015

      Oh absolutely Shauna. Even my dear mother who’s lived through my anorexia, bulimia and constant dieting will occasionally say, “I don’t know how you can eat so much.” And I feel like screaming that it’s not enough. It’s never enough.

      And then there are those who complain about eating a small chocolate bar or consider a row of chocolate as being ‘naughty’ and I scoff and think, “You have no idea….”

      However… I’m hanging in there with my small changes. I did get on the scale a week or so ago and was upset that I was only a couple of kg down, but I’ve really had to remind myself that I feel more in control of my habits of late. More mindful.

      I’m actually ridiculously sedentary at the moment. As I ‘work’ from home I often don’t leave my apartment so at my desk most of the day. I’m hoping to start some sort of daily (or regular) movement so I can at least feel a bit fitter and expend some energy.

      And sadly I live in Queensland on the Fraser Coast!

      • Newcastle Stafford
        September 26, 2015

        Sad face!! I am so sick of saying ” new day one” over and over with a laundry list of what I won’t do and what I will…. Ugh my poor friends hearing me announce yet another new commitment!!!!….. But u know I have never ever given up hope it’s just trying to find something to stick to…. something permanent. Have u ever tried alternate day fasting? 500 cals every other day and eat whatever on days between. Nothing demonised but calories reduced enough to lose weight.

        • Debbish
          September 27, 2015

          I’ve heard of the intermittent fasting approach (think I’ve got a blog post on it) – 5 days of ‘normal’ eating and 2 days of fasting. I’m pretty sure that because I’ve had to minimise my calories on two days (or more) I’d eat more on the other days to make up for it! I do however know that some people swear by it and there are (apparently) some sort of health benefits. Just not sure it’s for me given my disordered eating issues…

          • Newcastle Stafford
            September 27, 2015

            Totally get that — my dilemma is i know WHAT to do to lose weight and I know WHY i should lose weight i just seem to fail over and over on HOW to lose weight in a way that is sustainable/family-friendly/sociable/emotionally neutral. It’s good to chat to you — will be very keen to read your progress/discoveries.

          • Debbish
            September 27, 2015

            Oh yes I completely get it. I almost agreed to do a 12wk thing with a local personal trainer recently. It would have required me to weigh in and track food etc. It eventually occurred to me that I really didn’t want that and as you say. I KNOW what I’m supposed to eat. I knew the calories in everything I used to eat decades ago. Even now I’ve read enough about healthy eating options (GI, carbs, high protein / paleo etc) and exercise (calories burned, fact that more muscle means more calories burned; what the calories expended vs consumed should be to lose 1kg etc) that I really don’t need anyone to ‘teach’ me.

            I’ve previously talked about wanting someone to FORCE me (Biggest Loser TV show style) to exercise and eat healthily, but that won’t help in the long term. As I said in that post I’ve lost and gained, 10, 20, 30 PLUS kilos again and again. I always gain more than I’ve lost and I rarely have kept the weight off for very long at all. For me it all started after becoming anorexic at 16 and it’s not been the same since (30 years on!). But…. I’m getting there. 🙂

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