I like to take staycations. You know what they are? Instead of going somewhere, you stay home. I like to do this to take some time to relax, get some chores done around the house, and enjoy time with my family. I had the plan of staying focused with my food log, journaling, keeping my weight maintained and most importantly enjoying this time off.
It’s going to be a busy week with appointments, chores, baseball games (my grandson’s first ❤️), family get togethers, and my daughter’s wedding Saturday. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it all until Tuesday. That’s right, second day in. WTF!
I was reading a new book and all of my old BS food thoughts came roaring back. So this blog is going to be a book review and brain dump all rolled into one. At times it may seem like I’m blaming the book on my actions. Trust me, I’m not. The one thing that I do know for sure, beyond a doubt, is that only my thoughts and feelings can cause my actions. I’m just going to explain how I let my thoughts go there and didn’t check myself or do the model to correct this old thinking and behavior. (If you don’t know what the model is, check out The Life Coach School podcast. Brooke Castillo is flipping brilliant!)
The book I read was The F*ck it Diet: Eating should be Easy by Caroline Dooner. I found it on Amazon and the title hooked me. Not only because fuck is my favorite word, but who doesn’t want to read how eating should be easy. The book is 281 pages. Dooner is funny and very relatable for any chronic yo-yo dieter.
The book is broken down into two parts. The first part explains why diets fail. “The irony is that restriction and dieting cause a very real food addiction that cannot be cured with more dieting and restriction. We are physiologically and psychologically wired to be food addicts when our bodies sense there isn’t ample food. It’s chemical and hormonal and completely inescapable (pg 8).” Sounds promising, right? When we want to lose weight by dieting, we are setting ourselves up for failure. All of us yo-yo dieters know this to be true, yet we continually perpetuate the cycle.
The second part goes into the “how.” She lists five tools that will help you get out of the diet mentality and start changing your relationship with food:
- Allow Food: “You need to allow all food, whenever you are hungry, until what is guiding your food intake is your body, intuition, and desire, and not the famine response and your scared, hungry mind (pg 54).”
- Lie Down: “Because rest breeds sustainable productivity and creativity. We need those times to lie fallow. We cannot live in a perpetual harvest (pg 143).”
- Breathe and Feel: “Set a timer for five minutes and lie down. Your only task for these five minutes is to feel the most intense sensation in your body, and breathe into it (pg 179).” Basically, we need to take the time to feel our emotions instead of just ignoring or reacting to them.
- The Brain Dump: “writing exercise will help you see what is really going on underneath the surface. It will give you more awareness. And awareness is always the first step (pg 195).”
- The Belief Release: Another writing exercise that helps uncover negative or limiting beliefs that are blocking you from achieving your goals. “This isn’t about what you write. This is about what the writing allows you to feel (pg 225).”
I love this book! I already practice the last three tools so I’m down with what she has to say. What Dooner says about rest resonates with me because I know that I push myself too much and can easily feel burned out. She also gives numerous exercises to practice that will help you with this process. Her first tool is what conjured up all my food demon thoughts.
I automatically felt resistance when I read that she recommended allowing all food whenever. My mind completely skipped over the last part about being guided by your body, intuition and desire. Reading that I can eat whatever and whenever, my subconscious lizard brain went into overdrive. It started telling me that what I had been doing was unnecessary, restrictive,and harmful. I needed to quit these new habits and go eat, NOW!
So Tuesday I ate a lot. No food log. No 24 hour plan. No IF. No eating -2 to +2. No LCHF. No worrying about water intake. Cereal, 2 BLT sandwiches, granola bar, yogurt with granola, hot dog, some nachos. But I did top it off with a healthy salad that I wasn’t even hungry for. All my old bs thoughts rearing their ugly heads. I knew what I was doing. It wasn’t an unconscious storm eat. I made the choice to say “Fuck it” today. I want to eat whatever I want, whatever sounds good. I don’t care if I’m physically hungry, if I want it, I’m going to eat it. My subconscious brain was screaming Donner says it’s ok to eat, so eat. I even thought so what? I’m currently at the bottom of my weight range. It won’t matter if I gain a couple of pounds. I thought about how my dress for the wedding is a little loose so it won’t matter if I get a little bloated.
By Tuesday night, I finished the book and looked back at my day. I felt like shit. Bloated, shameful, resentful to name a few emotions. I told myself that today’s tantrum is over. I didn’t beat myself up. I didn’t call myself names. I realized that I had been neglecting my thought work. I have not been tending my garden and pulling out those old weedy thoughts. I’ve gotten lax about my journaling and got cocky thinking that I had this all nailed down.
So it’s Wednesday afternoon, I made my 24 hour plan, wrote in my food log, started back my IF, lunch was wedge style BLT (back to LCHF), doing the brain dump and getting ready to go for a walk. Lesson learned. Consistency, patience, and persistence. I’m not restricted. I’m eating in a way that fuels my body without feeding my emotions. Will I ever eat off plan again? Probably. Will I ever eat something loaded with sugar? You bet! Will I be able to recognize the difference between emotional and physical hunger? Yes! Why? Commitment. I’m committed to myself, to my desires, to my health, to my life!
Go read this book. Do the exercises. Be prepared for those demon food thoughts to come up. Journal.
Time for that walk. Plan on dancing my ass off Saturday night. Need to burn off this excess sugar to get my knees feeling right again.
Until next time. Have a flipping amazing day!