Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Just A Monkey Rattling The Cage

So, getting on the scale was hard for me this morning, simply because I knew.  A person cannot have the sort of eating weekend that I had and not have it reflect in some way.  Especially not 1,016 calories of Chunky Monkey.

Every single fiber of my being did not want to weigh in. But I went ahead because unless I decide to drop out of the My Long Hot Active Summer Challenge, it's something I need to do.  Besides, facing the music is somtimes the only way to get the (Chunky) monkey off your back.

Now that this is said and done, I have a couple of thoughts which I've decided to share even though some of you may want to skip straight to the comments or to the next blog you'll be reading today.

1.  My body l-o-v-e-s that damn weight.  If you haven't figured it out yet, the whole reason this blog is named Doing A 180 is because of my sincere desire to get as far away from that weight as possible.  But it just keeps repeating on me like a good bean soup.

2.  While some people do not care what they weigh, I do.  I am 5'6" tall.  I don't care what anyone says (including my doctor who thinks I need to only lose around 10-15 lbs.), I need to weigh around 30 pounds less than what I do right now.  In fact, 150 is not even my dream weight, or even my pre-thyroid issues weight, it's just what I know will be healthier for me.

3.  The reason I mention my doctor:  some of you may remember that she suggested I go on a 1,000 calorie a day eating plan for two weeks.  Her reasoning is this:  thyroid patients have horrible metabolisms even after getting rebalanced with meds.  Active thyroid patients seem to have an even harder time.  Her opinion is that my body has gotten used to 1500 or so calories a day and is now running like a well-oiled engine on this amount.  The only way to "fix" that is to completely shock my system.

4.  However, because I am extremely active and somewhat fit (I don't care what the body fat thingy on my scale says!), I honestly cannot wrap my mind around eating less than I do right now.  Last week I burned over 3500 calories in exercise alone. Currently I take Muay Thai Boxing 2-3 times a week (1 hour classes) and I'm running 25 miles a week. 

5.  I have been thinking HARD about food this week. Longer followers of this blog will remember that I really don't remove any sort of foods from my eating plan as I feel anything in moderation is ok.  My issue is the moderation, but it's not even a regular problem.  Prior to Sunday night it had been so long since I had a food tantrum that I couldn't even remember the last time.  Sure, I'll make my jokes with Charlie about the Cheez-Its (I do really, really like them), but honestly I work pretty hard at not thinking of anything as being forbidden.  Because when I do, is when trouble starts.

6.  So I've been pondering the thought that maybe I should stop tracking all together and just eat.  As a thyroid patient and someone who feels completely betrayed by their body, that is a very, very scary thought. But I haven't run away from it completely.

7.  My other thought all week long has been that I AM NOT WHAT I EAT - DAMMIT!  All week long I've been clinging to the idea that I might not actually be a bad person because I lost it with some ice cream. I mean, yes, my body may show the effects of poor choices versus healthier options, but ME, the woman I am right now today, the woman I so much want to be, is not about the food I've put in my mouth.    And that's just a fact that, at 50 years old, is time for me to come to grips with.


  1. I have just the site for you... check out Honoring Health here: It's a great blog about intuitive eating and why and how it works. Here's the thing, you must be patient with yourself and you must trust yourself and the process.

    I'm someone who's body seems to be comfortable around 180 too. At my heaviest I was ~225 and in 2006 I got down to 168. My original goal was 149. I never got there. Then I gained ~25 pounds. At the beginning of 2009 I started my blog and even though I didn't realize it at the time, I knew what I wanted was to embrace intuitive eating, stop counting calories and never say "diet" again. I eventually stopped weighing.

    I wish I could say that I had total faith in the process but I didn't...there's been a lot of steps backwards and side trips but I think my body is finally catching up to where my head is: peace with my body and peace with food.

    As I said yesterday at the dojo, in the past couple of weeks I know I've lost some weight...not sure how much. My waist is down nearly 4 inches and I am wearing clothes that just a month or so ago were too tight. I'm tempted to get the scale out, but I don't think I will. There's such peace with letting that go...and I think it translates to my body letting go of its weight.

  2. Ooops. I forgot to include the link!

  3. Without cutting back on calories, could you adjust your ratios of fat/carbs/protein? I know that science says that a calorie is a calorie is a calorie, but I think my "burner" is a little different. It functions better with a higher protein/fewer grain-based carbs. Maybe your engine would function differently on a different fuel mix?

  4. You have had some major life events this past year. The fact that your weight has not gone beyond 180 is a victory. I think that stress messes up your metabolism. I've been your faithful stalker, er, I mean follower for a while now and it seems like after you go through something you see a little tick up. Do you have a graph of your weigh-ins? Anyway, just a thought.
    I hope things start to become normal, new normal for you anyway. I'm most impressed with how you handle the food/exercise in light of everything.
    I have not tracked food for a while now and I seem to be less obsessed with food. Which makes me eat less and make healthy choices and small portions. Go figure.


  5. It would seem to me that with your activity level, you need to nourish your body well. If you drastically cut your calories, you'd lack the energy you need. It's really better to be active than anything else you can do.

  6. I can relate to a having a body that wants to stick at a certain weight. I often think I have some kind of thyroid problem, as my metabolism is as slow as an old granny in a walker!

    I am just on the end of a two week meat free/sugar free/gluten free challenge, and it has really helped to put my body into weight loss mode.

    I hear you on the I am not what I eat, but sometimes my cravings for processed, crappy food do make me feel that I am what I eat or what I cannot seem to stop eating. It doesn't reflect on me as a person or as a woman, but it shapes how I feel both mentally and physically so there are obviously other ramifications (for me).

    I like the idea of intuitive eating, but I worry that I would intuitively eat a whole tray of cookies.....

  7. My doctor reminds me on a quarterly basis "someone your height should really weigh about 120." That's 47 pounds I have to lose!

    Guess what - Charlie is coming to town today! I haven't seen him since Christmas - but so much going on with Hannah coming home and my step-son moving - I probably won't see him until Friday.

    I think you would do very well eating intuitively - wish I could but with insulin I have to be exact.



  8. I've actually heard about that "shock the system" thing. It's actually not a bad idea. Even though 1000 calories technically isn't enough. On the flip side, eating 1000 calories worth of ice cream shocks the system too, just in a different way. It IS interesting how your body loves 180. Keep positive and it will work out!

  9. I think the 1,000 calorie thing is not a good idea BUT I like the idea of just eating what you want.

    Have you ever read the book Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole? My library had a copy. It's basically just listening to your body about when and what to eat, not beating yourself up about going "off" or cheating. It's really a great book and I learned lots of things from it!

  10. Okay. What if you shocked your system with 2,000 calories a day until you can eat 2,000 calories a day and maintain your weight for three days. Or some such nonsense. Then when you can do that successfully shock your system by dipping occasionally to 1200 or 1300. I don't know. I read about it in the Curves book, and it really helped me get out of my month long plateaus

  11. Not only are you not what you eat but you are not your body either. Too bad we have to maintain 'the vehicle' as long as possible so we can pretend while we're "driving" around inside of them.

    I don't even know what I just wrote. I must be channeling some weirdo. ;-)

  12. Not knowing your diet program, I was going to suggest doing WW. I too am almost 50 and I started out at 211 and I NEVER thought in a million years that I would be at this new weight. Only 15 more to get to 140. Good luck and DON'T give UP!

  13. I kinda ate intuitively last summer, when I was going through that gallbladder pain and waiting for the surgery. I lost weight...but then, I didn't dare go near anything fried or heavy because I was afraid it would trigger an attack. Eventually I went back to counting calories, but lately I think I've been more on the intuitive side, and with the amount of exercise that I get, it works for me...I've even dropped a few pounds.

    I think I'd rather see you do the IE than the 1000 calories - have a feeling you wouldn't make it through your workouts with such little food.

  14. Eeek! I ran to my doctor this Spring crying cuz I stalled in weight loss at 150 (I am MUCH shorter than you) and I was HOPING he would find my thyroid meds needed upped. But no, the levels were all good. And I am STILL stuck at 150. 1300 is not working. I would rather bang my head against a brick wall than eat 1000. ::sobs::

    I burn way too much, I would have to stop exercising to get through a day. And that's not an option for me. I encourage you to stay active, like Splurgie said. I really didn't ever feel like I had my thyroid beat until I started making fitness goals come first before weight goals. Exercise is the only way I can fight the sluggish/depressed/thyroid fog feelings.

    Here's to a better weigh in next week, for both of us. :-/

  15. I think the concept of intuitive eating is a good one, just not for me. I do not trust myself to just eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm full. I had a long-ingrained habit of over-eating, and I have found that to maintain my (10-year) weight loss, I must remain vigilant about food intake and exercise. I wish it wasn't so, but I'd rather do that than intuitively eat my way back up the scale. With regards to the idea of the 1000 cal./day challenge, that intuitively :) sounds like a bad idea. How about a visit with a registered dietician. She may help you get a handle on all things dietary as related to throid conditions and weight loss. Good luck!

  16. Eating ice cream will never make you a bad person. It may make you unhappy though, if it were to progressively separate you from the body you want.

    I agree that moderation is better than a heavily restricted diet, mainly because of the depressed mindset that comes with deprivation. That said, there are some foods that offer next to no nutritional value and will only push you further away from your goals. Maybe foods like these should be tightly limited to take into account your thyroid issues. Is it worth it for just a few moments of false pleasure?

    Hang in there! :)

  17. I love your honesty, Woman.
    and wanted to remind you that Im here.
    tweet me
    dm me
    shout at me if I can lend a hand.


  18. Hello Helen, thanks for stopping by and the kind words earlier this week. You know unless you can't swim you could definitely do a triathlon. But most of these events offer duathlons as well so that's another option for you to get a similar experience.

    I wouldn't eat 1000 calories for an extended period but you could do it occasionally and it would still help shock your system. Hope you figure out what works for you as that's what it comes down to..what works for you as everyone's different!