I Thought Knowledge Made You Smarter

They say half the battle is knowing what the problem is. That is so untrue. I have the knowledge: I have tons of Cooking Light magazines, Weight Watchers cookbooks, a B in a nutrition class I took in college. I know what the problem is.

It’s emotional eating.

One of the times before when I lost weight, I determined this. Stay with me, because it’s tricky: Eat when you’re hungry and don’t eat when you’re not. I know! Genius, aren’t I? Making that little yet huge lifestyle change made a positive difference quickly. Of course, making better food choices helped, too, but doing that was the main thing.

When I have a bad day, when I’m irritated, when I’m lonely, the very first thing I crave is food. Usually something fried. Or otherwise fat-laden, like cheese pizza.

When I’m thrilled about something, when I’m in a good mood, then I like to call a friend. To do what? Go out to eat, of course!

When I’ve worked hard, when I’ve followed through and actually completed a project, well, it’s time for a big meal or a nice food treat, because I “deserve” it, you know. I’ve “earned” it.

My picture of indulgence is me, my comfy chair, a big thick book, and a bowl or plate slap full, so I can eat while I read, combining two of my favorite things. Learning not to react and follow long, long established habits is terribly hard.

There was a great article in Oprah’s magazine months ago about habits and why it’s hard to make new ones. Not that I can remember what it said exactly, except things like persistence, discipline, and perseverance were involved.  I know this. My logical mind knows this. My reactive one, while learning, is slow to change, even while knowing better. Take yesterday for instance. It was not a good day. (I whined about it here.) Nothing major, nothing I really should have been bent out of shape about, just general cruddiness. For lunch I had a half of a turkey sandwich on wheat, one serving of chips. And a Payday candy bar. Yeah, I know. 

I think I had a point here where I was going, but the life of me, I don’t know what it was. Now that I’ve got it down in black and white, it seems pretty simple – cut that crap out!

Monday was weigh in day. It was with fear and trembling that I stepped onto the scale. After showing off Thanksgiving morning things went south for three consecutive days. Yet the scale indicated I’d lost about 1.5 pounds. I don’t know how this can be. I’m sore afraid that this coming Monday, when I weigh, it may well reflect last week’s indulgences and sloth. Because this week? I have had opportunities to do a ten minute workout. Yet I haven’t.

Early morning is when I usually work out, yet I’ve had trouble sleeping for several days and thus, trouble getting up in the morning. In other words, I’m too lazy to get up and do it.


This morning I got up a couple of minutes and did the little warm up to the routine. Not the actual workout, mind you, but the warm up. Is that lame or a baby step? When does it get to the point that baby steps don’t count anymore?


7 responses to “I Thought Knowledge Made You Smarter

  1. It’s a baby step!

    My sister lost alot of weight in her mid twenties… and kept it off. She is now in her early forties, and I asked her how she did it. She said when she was LOSING it, she had to think of food as fuel and nothing more. Fuel. Trying that mindset now, and it’s HARD!

  2. Keetha, we could be food sisters, I so related to this post.

    I’m trying to replace food “rewards” I would give myself with other things. I made a rule – no eating while watching TV – and it’s HARD for me. Eating is just – something to do. I think I have an oral fixation or something. I should start chewing gum.

    Baby steps never stop counting.

  3. I am an emotional eater too. I also eat when I’m bored, or I need to stay awake. I usually work very late (after kids are asleep) and having something to munch on helps me to stay focused. I once ate through an entire bag of Hershey’s cherry kisses. (Dang those Hershey people! Why did they need to invent those?)
    I know it is just a habit . Chewing gum sometimes helps .
    Hey, at least you did the warm up to the work out. That’s more than if you hadn’t done anything at all:)

  4. Oh I’m definitely an emotional eater. No question about that. I now have three packages of rice cakes in the pantry for those times when I feel that my jaws must be working hard while I’m reading or when I’m stressed.

    Any step you take is a step in the right direction.

  5. I feel like I could have written this post myself. That is exactly how I am when it comes to food. It started early in my life . It’s my coping mechanism.

    If only we could go cold turkey but that whole “needing food to live” thing is really cramping my style.

    Maybe/Hopefully someday food will only be my fuel and not the thing my world revolves around.

    The baby steps will always count!!

  6. Is there such a thing as empathy eating? Because this evening I ate along with my husband, who was emotional eating! Seriously though, baby steps totally count, it’s all forward motion.

  7. Definitely a baby step!! I think we all go through that psychological process… knowing what’s good for us, yet just not being able to DO IT.

    There’s definitely some deeper crap going on… some kind of mental block or something.

    If you want some free tips and info, check out http://www.ShrinkYourself.com, the website of emotional eating expert Dr. Roger Gould. Try the free interactive quizzes… they provide personalized insights on your specific situation/challenges, then spit out tips and info that can help further your progress.

    Good luck!!

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