Thursday, August 14, 2008

Day 101 - Yes, but how does that make you feel?

I can't believe I missed an opportunity to blog on Day 100. Ah well.

One of the things that got me to a point where I needed to lose 80 pounds is eating for the wrong reasons. I often (used to!) eat when bored, excited, mad, depressed... To the kind of mindset I spent most of my life in, there's nothing some sugar and fat can't fix.

So, on this plan, I started out trying to be meticulous about following the program. And it didn't require a lot of concious thought at first; you setup your meals for the day, you eat every 2 hours, you don't have to think about it. The lack of thought was very helpful to me. I could make eating right the default, and I'd have to go out of my way to screw it up.

Lately, as I'm getting closer to my goal, I'm finding that I do have to think about it more. I've had a few days (yesterday was one!) where I didn't follow the program, but ended up substituting more low fat meats for a medifast meal or two. My totals for the day were probably not that far off, but I had sashimi for lunch[1], and then some roasted chicken and cold cuts later in the day. Well, I've been doing so well, don't I deserve to have some yummy food?

I've been having that thought a lot lately, and I think it's the new trick my lizard brain has come up with. It's partially true, even! I've lost (quick check) 57.6 pounds as of this morning. That's insane. Surely I deserve a little celebratory snack. An extra bag of those (relatively) delicious soy crisps? Another few ounces of meat? How about a few chips from a bag that isn't even on the diet?

One of the reasons I've been able to make this work so far is that I haven't really had to deal with real food at all. I've been "on plan" since May, so I've been able to avoid a lot of things that looked really good. I've allowed myself some slack so I don't explode: a few 20 calorie snapples aren't going to ruin my diet, after all. (And they haven't! I have retroactive proof!). But where do I draw the line? So far the line has been very close to "medifast or nothing"; Obviously not a good long term strategy.

As I start getting closer to maintenance mode, though, I'm going to need another mechanism to cope with all the food out there. I haven't quite figured out what that's going to be, but I am planning on keeping up with the daily weighins. So, worst case, even if I can't easily stay in a healthy range, I'll have an alarm for when I leave the range, and I know I can drop a few pounds as needed. It'd be nice if I never made the alarm go off, but that's my plan B for now.

I am glad that the medifast plan has a long maintenance cycle; Hopefully it will give my brain time to adjust to that as well. I also have a visit planned with a diabetes educator/nutritionist team once I'm released back into the wild, so I'll be working in this with the help of some very smart folks.

[1] Big shout out to Yoshi's in Latham, NY. Highly recommend. They take very good care of me there, and the sashimi platter I get there at least once a week has been a lifesaver on this diet. Having one food that I really enjoy that I get to eat on a regular basis with no guilt makes this bearable. I am looking forward to going back there every week even when I'm off the diet and on my own.

1 comment:

SusieH said...

There's the toughie, isn't it? I have found if I am laser-focused on a weight loss program, I lose the weight, I eat the things I am supposed to, all is well. Then I reach some magic number for me - 30 pounds gone, or whatever, and think, I deserve a treat. Which turns into (gradually) eating all crap, and lots of it, all the time. Learning to deal with eating sensibly forever is the key...I am watching you!!