You eat crap, you get fat

I believe the phrase the youth of today would use is OMG! Week 73’s weigh-in has just been completed, and I’m disgusted to report a +4 for the week. +4? OMG! Again.

Would it make any sense if I said that it was not a surprise, but still an incredible shock? I mentioned a week or so ago that I’d been the perfect poster-boy for the whole weight-watchers experience, and this week has been quite like that. Except it’s been the complete opposite. I’ve managed to consistently do the opposite of what I should have done for pretty much the whole week. I’ve snacked when I wasn’t hungry, I’ve stopped tracking what I’m eating, I’ve made the wrong choices when I actually stopped to think about what I was eating. I’ve eaten midget gems, wine gums, crisps by the gallon, avoided be gym completely, even though I had more chances than I can remember to actually get there and generally had a terrible, terrible week.

And would you believe that I’m still quite shocked that I’ve put on four pounds?

It’s in weeks like this that the challenge I face both in maintaining my original weight loss, and in continuing to lose more weight, is laid bare. It’s weeks like this that make me fear for the future, and it’s weeks like this that make me feel frustrated, angry, disappointed, scared, upset and generally fed up.

It’s probably not the least bit helpful, but it’s also weeks like this that absolutely fascinate me, as I still feel that if I could get my head around why I put myself through weeks like this, then I’d finally be able to crack this whole shrinking thing. I think I’m still clinging on to the hope that somewhere in my twisted little fat-bloke’s mind, there’s a little switch that if I can just flick it, will make it clear to me why it’s not a good idea to eat like a pig when you’re trying to lose weight. Just in case you’re new to the blog, I ought to state, for the record, just so you don’t think I’m totally insane, that I do know that it’s not a good idea to eat like a pig when I’m trying to lose weight. I really do. Or at least I do before the fact, and I definitely do after the fact. But clearly I don’t know that in the moment. At the time that I’m reaching for the midget gems, something overrides the whole ‘logical and sensible’ side of my brain, and I seem to revel in the general naughtiness of the self-destruction I’m wreaking upon myself.

What makes this whole thing so frustrating is that I’ve been able to find the right mental switches to deal with smoking and drinking, neither of which I do at all any more. And I have genuinely dealt with them – I don’t have these stupid lapses and smoke for a week every now and again. I stopped smoking because I managed to get myself to see smoking as a non-smoker saw it, and that flicked a switch in my head almost instantly, and overcame years of addiction once and for all. Am I mad to try to find the same thing for my over-eating?

To try to relate it to the smoking thing for a minute, I always believed that I enjoyed smoking. I now know that wasn’t true, but I genuinely believed it to be true at the time. I tell myself that I don’t enjoy over-eating. But I’m not sure I actually believe it. Deep down I mean. That’s the switch that needs flicking. When I’m pouring a bag of midget gems down my throat, I’m clearly getting something from it. But what actually is it? To link it directly to the seeing smoking as a non-smoker sees it, what would a thin-bloke think while watching me eating them? Would they be missing out on something by not eating them? If they could see what I was getting from them, would they reach for a bag and start gulping?

It seems so obvious to say no. They wouldn’t do it. So why do I?

I think there’s something else going on here. I think that when I’m eating badly, the urge that I’m satisfying might not have anything to do with food itself, but is more to do with overcoming denial. There’s a sense of satisfaction that comes from doing something that I know I shouldn’t that I think is the reward I’m getting from over-eating. I think it’s related to the same switch, and might actually help me to flick it, but it does involve looking in a different place.

I wonder if any of the above makes any sense to anyone else on the planet? It fascinates me to know how posts like this must read to different people. If you’re a thin person who’s just stumbled across the blog by mistake, then I’m guessing it must seem insane. If you’re just starting on your weight-loss, it must seem strangely irrelevant, as things are probably going ok. If you’ve lost lots of weight, and are keeping it off, then you’re probably wondering what I’m going on about, and not understanding why I’m making it so difficult. If you’re struggling, then I hope it makes some sense 🙂

Not for the first time, I find myself in an odd place. I’m not concerned that I’m going to fall apart and put it all back on. I know I could do that, but I’m happy that I won’t. I’m sure I’ll lose a pound or two over the next few weeks, then gain a bit, then lose a bit and so on. I’ve got a horrible fear that I’m going to spend the rest of my life bouncing around between 14 and 14.5 stone. Not the end of the world, and considerably better than bouncing around between 18 and 18.5 stone. But still not what I’m looking for.

The frustration is that I can feel the solution nearby. I feel like I’m blindly working my way around a darkened room, and that every now and again my fingers brush against the light switch I’m looking for. But then I lose it before I have a chance to flick it, and so still can’t see things properly.

How very odd.

Have a good week.

The Shrinking Man.

5 thoughts on “You eat crap, you get fat”

  1. OMG!

    I am shocked.

    Thinking about this, and as I always say to people who ask me how I do it, I think you need the “Will to succeed”. You have to have the “will” to make this happen and without that desire, forget even starting a weight loss program. It is not easy and at times it will be hard. I am guessing here, but in your case I believe you have lost this “Will” and the things you say this week back that up. I am sure this is only temporary, but this has obviously been around for more than a few weeks now, at least since before your holiday, maybe even longer.

    I think you have a few options here.

    With Christmas looming (and based on what happened last year) perhaps you should consider taking a break here and just try and stay around your current weight until you are able to re focus?

    The other thing you could do is visit a meeting and try with there help to get back on track? And failing the first point, re focus. You have the tools and knowledge to do this. You need to exercise and eat sensibly and stay focused day in day out, week after week and that needs to include a sensible Christmas – maybe just enjoy Christmas day, not all two weeks 😉

    These are my initial thoughts. I have been following you on this site for just over a year now and you have been a great inspiration to me and many others. We all want you to succeed. I wish you all the best at this critical stage.

    Dave

  2. Not that I think this will make things any better but I have just eaten an entire packet of biscuits in 10 minutes. Why do we do these things? I’m more or less relying on you to get to the bottom of this conundrum!

  3. Why do we do it? It’s hard to say isn’t it. But I guess that’s why we’ve all been/are overweight/obese and a naturally thin person isn’t.

    I ate a whole party sized tub of twiglets at the weekend in one sitting. Why? No idea. I like them. I convinced myself that it didn’t matter as “they are a healthy optio snack”. But it was still way too much and didn’t actually do anything for me….

  4. As a female who has battled the same battles for the last 20+ years (am I that old??) and who works as a Weight Watchers Leader, can I first say how fascinating I find your blog. I think you write really well and I find it really interesting to see things from a man’s perspective although I’m not too surprised to see that it’s very similar to a woman’s (well mine anyway). You have done incredibly well and 4 lbs is neither here nor there in the grand scheme of things so long as you’re able to contain it. From my own personal weight loss journey I’d guess that your overeating this week relates to your disappointment at last week’s loss. Disappointment can either lead to a bad week or an even more focused week depending on your mindset at the time. This time it went with the former but it just proves you’re human. I’m sure you’ll get back on track and achieve the goals that you’ve set yourself – on that note you haven’t listed your achievements so far for a while … might that help? Good luck and keep writing – I have related to everything you’ve written during the course of this blog, I love it.

  5. Hi all.

    Sorry I’ve not responded directly for a while – I just wanted to take a minute to say how much I appreciate you taking the time to comment. It makes such a difference to get input and support from others who’ve been there before, and are there with me.

    Sorry if I’m whinging a bit at the moment 🙂

    TSM.

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