February 13, 2007

I’m really only posting tonight for the sake of reminding myself I have this blog and that I intend to keep it up.

I’ve had what feels like the longest day in history, woken at 6.30am, up at 7am, out by 8am, 40 minutes early for work, a hellish journey back from work which meant we didn’t get home until past 6pm. I’ve had terrible stomach ache today too, I’m not entirely sure what’s up, but it feels like a cross between trapped wind, constipation, diarrhoea, and the feeling that my womb is about to drop out. As a result, I’m not even sure if I’ve been hungry today. I didn’t feel like eating at work, so I stuck to coffee and water, and more for the sake of having eaten something rather than anything else, I made a chicken and bacon salad for tea.

Atkins is going OK, providing it isn’t MEAT OVERLOAD that’s giving me a gippy stomach. I have emailed my Lighterlife counsellor tonight to tell her I won’t be continuing, and am still awaiting a reply from the counsellor I emailed on the weekend. Should I not hear from her by Wednesday, I will give her a call on Thursday.

Tonight will be a very early night, I’m shattered. I’d like to go to bed now, but to go before 10pm, for me, would mean waking up at daft ‘o clock in the morning. I’m hoping that having gone easy on the meat, having only 2 coffees, and nothing else but water today, will mean that I feel better tomorrow. Although tomorrow is Valentines day. Bleh. I don’t really subscribe to the whole thing, I haven’t bought my boyfriend a card or anything, but when everyone around you is constantly talking about the lovely evenings they are spending with their other halves, and how wonderful it is to be with them, it just drives it home how very far away he is, and how very very lovely it would be after a day like this, to have him here next to me on the sofa.

Thursday I will be taking Ella over to mum’s to ride her bicycle, and to be able to sit and enjoy a coffee and a cigarette with someone. Thursday evening I have a friend coming over, we’ll be making icing kittens to stand atop a birthday cake for another good friend. My boyfriend will also be over on Thursday night, but his train doesn’t arrive until just before midnight, and so I will probably be fast asleep by the time he gets here.

Friday I look forward to very much. Despite my hideous lack of money, we are going to the National Railway Museum, taking Ella to see Thomas The Tank Engine. She’s already excited about it, and asking to see him every day. As she is so small, and can’t really grasp time very well yet, I can only tell her that we aren’t going to see Thomas until mummy’s boyfriend is here. It should be great fun, and worth the money I think. I’m not sure who will enjoy it the most, Ella or Lewis.

Saturday once Ella has gone to her dads, we haven’t anything planned until the evening. I’ve bought us tickets to see Hot Fuzz at the cinema on an early evening showing. When we get back I suspect we may partake of some dinner, which I reckon HE can cook, and quite possibly a few drinks. We might try to make up for the boringness of our anniversary celebration! Having read up, I know that vodka has zero carbs, as does Coke Zero, therefore I think I can allow myself something. We were possibly going for a night out in West Yorkshire for a friend’s birthday (the friend the cake is for), but I can’t afford the petrol, and I don’t trust myself to drink when I will be surrounded by all manner of food I shouldn’t have. Alcohol really weakens my resolve and I’d rather not put myself in that position. At least having a drink at home doesn’t pose a problem, as all that’s in the house is what I can have.

I have ordered some low carb goodies from an online store, and am awaiting delivery of some zero carb marshmallows which I shall take to the cinema with me, some low carb tortilla wraps, a bottle of low carb sweet and sour sauce, some weird gelatinous zero carb noodle things (I am hoping to make some sort of stir fry with them, some chicken, some broccoli, & a bit of the sweet & sour sauce. God knows what they will be like though.) , and some cheesy snack things. There are some wonderful things available, all manner of zero carb sweets, low carb chocolates, low carb cake mixes, but I can’t afford any of them really. I shouldn’t even have indulged in what I’ve already ordered, but I do think it’s important to have some variety doing Atkins, it helps you stick to it.

Weight wise, I have no idea what is happening. My scales read drastically different at all times of the day on different days of the week. They’re so unreliable, I might just get rid of them. I will weigh myself on mum’s scales on Thursday to see what they say, they are usually accurate. I weighed 16st 8lbs on hers before I started Lighterlife, and last week when I was on them they said 15st 9lbs. I can’t imagine a reason why I wouldn’t be lighter than that by Thursday, but I have no idea by how much, so we’ll see. Fingers crossed. Again.


Day Thirteen.

February 10, 2007

Weigh in, about 3.5lbs (she tells us in kilos, so I get confused about the amount in lbs) off this week, plus another cm off my waist.  Good stuff.

I have pretty much decided that this isn’t going to work for me this time.  The class today was quite good, we learnt about ego states, and the effect they have on us.  It all makes sense, especially when you think about things from your childhood that still affect your behaviour now.  The trouble is, I KNOW these things.  I am aware that having such strong boundaries with eating when I was a child, probably sends me into a ‘child ego state’ now, and I think bugger it, I’ll eat what I like because I can.  It’s all subconscious though, and therefore very difficult to control.

I was quite infuriated while watching the weekly DVD today.  They were interviewing a lady who had lost something like 10 stone with Lighterlife.  She looked great, and had obviously done very well.  She was asked how she felt now being slim, to which she replied very evangelically, that it was fantastic.  I’m sure it is.  They then showed a picture of her X stone heavier when she started Lighterlife, and asked how do you feel looking at that?  She shuddered, and said she was ashamed at how she looked then, and is ashamed looking at herself like that.  I think this is utterly the wrong thing to let people hear, and encourages us to feel ashamed for how we look now.

I know that we all WANT to be thinner and look better, but to reinforce the feelings we have of not being worthy because we’re fat now, by showing a lady openly saying she was ashamed of herself, and thin people sitting in front of her nodding in agreement, is horrible.   It’s very contradictory to see that in the video, and then be asked about times people have made you feel bad because of your weight, and for the counsellor to then tell you to wipe those thoughts from your mind because you count, and you don’t need to feel bad about the person you are.

I was also concerned for one of the ladies who I go with.  3 of us car share, and today one of the ladies admitted that she’d eaten 3 pringles.  On the way home she was saying how relieved she was that she was still in ketosis and still lost weight even after having them.  She said she felt so disgusted with herself that she as spitting them out, and spent ages afterwards worrying and feeling guilty and disappointed with herself.  For 3 pringles.  For someone who has only moderately overeaten through occassional greed, and is not THAT overweight anyway, to suddenly be so terribly horrified by having put something so small in her mouth, and to feel so badly about it for so long afterwards – these are symptoms of eating disorders, and I really feel that whether intentional or not, this course actually encourages this behaviour in people who haven’t suffered with it before.

I understand that if you want to keep on top of your weight when you have lost it, that you will have to be vigilant, and make effort probably every day to recognise your feelings and keep control of them, but to actually instill in someone this sort of level of attention to something is akin to obsession, and therefore really not healthy.

The counsellor asked how many of us saw food as a treat, and most people did.  I think most people do.  Not all food, but lots of it.  Apparently it’s just something that has continued from childhood when we had sweets or crisps or ice cream as a treat.  I too see food as a treat.  I also understood when the counsellor told us that we should try replacing food with something else as a treat.  I may be trying to make excuses for myself here, but really, what else is there?

As a single mother, come 7.30pm my daughter is in bed, I am alone.  My boyfriend is 200 miles away in London.  I cannot leave the house.  I have neither the money, nor the opportunity (there are not many people who can look after my daughter for me) for treats like a spa treatment, a trip to the cinema, an evening in the pub, or even just to pop out and spend the evening with a friend.  I get very lonely and feel very isolated, and I also feel very trapped.  I know that food is not an answer, but it is the only thing that I can have that I enjoy at these times.

Since beginning Lighterlife again, I have been going to bed very early to help get over this time.  I will try so very hard to stick to this, but it only works if I am tired enough.  Also having identified that I seem to eat the most between 8-10pm, I can be conscious of this.  I may try reducing the hour at which I allow myself to stop eating, in gradual amounts.  Writing this blog has certainly helped, as once I start writing, I seem to be able to go for a while (sorry about that), and that keeps me occupied.

I did initially think that doing Atkins, I would keep tabs on my calories as well as my carbs, but now I think I will just focus on making sure I have the carbs I am meant to, and try to be conscious of when I am hungry, and when I am full.  We’ll see how it goes, but after all the consideration I have given things recently, I don’t think obsessing about calories and denying myself something when I really want it, just because I’ve run out of calories, is a wise move.

I have eaten this past week, albeit not much, and still lost what I lost, and am still clearly in ketosis.  I would expect to stay in ketosis, and eating every day, still be able to lose a couple of lbs a week.  I may still keep a food diary, not to count calories, but rather to be able to be able to identify any patterns that might emerge with what and when and how I eat.  I am so very determined to get on top of this, and will be getting in touch with the therapist I have found that I will hopefully be able to have one to one sessions with soon.

Day Nine.

February 6, 2007

I’m not sure, but this feels a bit like a sign –

OK, I’m not aiming for a size zero, but everything that woman says rings true. I was confident enough before I knew I was starting LL, and almost as soon as I had a start date, I started to feel very conscious of myself, even to the point of being a little bit put off being ‘intimate’ with my boyfriend, which I have never ever been.

I also felt disappointed with my weight loss last week. 8lbs in a week really is stunningly good, but last time I did it I lost 1st 1lb in my first week, so 8lb seemed shit. This is not the right way to think. I weighed myself before starting LL, to find out I had gained 6lbs in the two weeks leading up to it. Instead of being horrified, because really, 6 lbs in 2 weeks is disgusting, I was very pleased it wasn’t more, and dwelled on the thought no more. My thinking is apparently all backwards.

I still don’t know whether I will stop doing LL, but everything I keep thinking and hearing and reading is pointing me more towards giving it up. If I do, I think the idea will be to stay in ketosis and do Atkins to continue losing weight (at whatever rate my body decides), and to do some proper research into therapists/psychiatrists in the area. Perhaps I can get better results seeing someone on a one to one basis. I will probably decide on the weekend. I am still going to make it to my next meeting, and see if anything changes for me, and then I am going to visit a good friend on Sunday, who has a very sensible head on her, and talk it through before I try to make a decision. In the mean time, I’m going to mostly be drinking water, weeing, and cuddling the hot water bottle my delicious boyfriend bought me for our anniversary.

Day Seven.

February 4, 2007

First weigh in yesterday afternoon, and I lost 3.7 kilos, which is just over 8lb.  I still don’t know what my weight is, or was, according to the counsellor’s scales.  I was a little disappointed, as I weighed myself on my mum’s scales before I started and they read 16st 8lbs, and when I weighed myself on them again on Thursday (and also today) they said 15st 9lbs.  They have always been accurate before (and in line with the scales of whoever else is weighing me at the time), so I am trusting them.  My own scales said I had gone from 230lbs to 218lbs, so I’m fairly sure I’ve lost more than 8.  It’s perhaps down to the fact it is my time of the month.  Either way, I’ve had a good loss, and when I was measured, I’ve lost 3cm from my bust, and 3cm from my waist which is great.

Spent most of the weekend feeling a bit down about things.  The class yesterday was not at all inspiring, in fact everything the counsellor said made me think probably the opposite to what she intended me to.  She was talking about making SMART goals for weight loss and for life, and to illustrate her point she told us about tetraplegics she had worked with, who had before been healthy.  Her point was that you never know what will happen tomorrow, so don’t waste time.  All that made me think was why the fuck am I wasting 2 hours of my Saturday here, and the next three months of my life not eating, drinking, or socialising?

The class so far seems very geared towards weight loss, which I know is the main point, but the reason I am doing Lighterlife rather than any other sort of diet is because I have serious eating problems which I desperately want to overcome.  The CBT I’m sure will kick in more in the next few weeks when we start examining things like ‘crooked thinking’.  Although I’m not sure I can remember what that even means at the moment.  I am just so worried about various things, and beginning to wonder whether I can see this through.

My main worry is my daughter.  I am a single mother, and although she will be having lunch at nursery 3 times a week, all her breakfasts, 2 lunches, and 3 evening meals will be at home.  It is very difficult, not only to cook a tiny amount for a 3 year old, but also to sit her down and ask her to eat her tea nicely, when mummy isn’t eating a fucking thing.  My daughter is obviously my main priority, and as such I am so very desperate that she does not develop a problem with eating.  Whether my not eating for such a long time would have any impact on her at this age I don’t know, but it’s certainly a little bit hard to ask her to eat things, because she can, quite rightly, turn around and say “well you’re not” .

I also worry about social stuff.  I know 3 months out of an entire adult lifetime is hardly anything, but I am in a position at the moment where I am about to start a new job.  It would be a shame to miss staff nights out, or opportunities to go for lunch with collegues who may be prospective friends, because I am not eating.  I know that I can still go to these things if I want, and just drink water.  I know that I can explain my diet, or make excuses as to why I am not eating.  However, I do not like going to pubs or restaurants and not drinking and eating, it’s just not easy for me, and something that is likely to throw me violently off the wagon very quickly.

I had a terrible morning on Friday.  I felt very low (a lot to do with time of the month probably, and also just a general underlying sense of bleh I’ve had for a while now), and got quite upset thinking about the weekend.  My boyfriend was coming up from London on Friday evening, and staying until Monday evening.  1 year anniversary.  I should have been looking forward to it, but all I could think was ‘what the hell have I got to offer him?’.  I was going to be out of the house from 12 until 3pm at my Lighterlife meeting, too tired to go anywhere or do much.  No eating or drinking, early nights, and then out to work on Monday.  Of course the reason he came was to see me, even in my irrational misery on Friday morning I knew this, but it didn’t make me feel any better.

I was very seriously considering eating on Saturday night, because I really just wanted us to enjoy something together.  I managed to get through it but I think it was a very unentertaining night for him.  We watched telly, I spent a bit of time on minimins, & we played some cards.  I’m sort of glad I came through it without eating, but I certainly don’t feel any sort of huge pride in having done so, and it hasn’t enthused me any more for the diet.

Another reason I am doubting the course, is that my faith in Lighterlife isn’t what it was.  I already mentioned the Coke Zero thing, and I think I mentioned the amount of carbohydrates needed to stay in ketosis.  Well I’ve looked at the nutritional information for the foodpacks, and 4 a day total about 40g net carbs, which is 20g more in a day than I ever had when I was doing Atkins.  I am in ketosis though, unless the counsellor has magical lying ketosticks, so perhaps 40g a day is fine.  The only other thing that bugs the life out of me (apart from the horrific price), is that they tell you to avoid avoid avoid citric acid.  You are not allowed chewing gum, soft drinks, lemon in your tea, anything with an ounce of citric acid, and this is because it may affect ketosis.  Eating one of the bars yesterday, I happened to look at the nutritional information and the ingredients, and ZOMGLOL it’s got fucking citric acid in it.  *shrugs*

So, I haven’t given up, I’m still on the diet.  I try not to make important decisions when I may be slightly overemotional, or just not in the right frame of mind.  I do still want to lose the weight, this is important to me, and so I will continue on the course until I am sure one way or the other, which route is the best for me.

Day One.

January 29, 2007

I’ve managed it!

Alright, so that’s no great success considering I have another 99 days to manage it too, but I’m pleased because it’s been one hell of a day to get through. I can honestly recommend NEVER starting any sort of diet the day following a lot of booze. Particularly a lot of red wine.

I had a great time last night, it was ace to spend time with all the people I was looking forward to seeing. I don’t think I went overboard with the eating considering it was my ‘last supper’, I just grazed on things across the evening. I didn’t go overboard with the drinking either, although I think I put my glass down at exactly the right time. One more sip and I think I’d have been quite poorly.

I was OK most of this morning, I got myself a glass of water as soon as I came downstairs, and managed 4 within a couple of hours of being up. I had a wanker of a headache from the wine, and that general hangovery meh-ness that usually requires medication by a complex combination of grease/salt/carbohydrate/grease, and not long after lunch I started to struggle.

I’m surprised at how quickly I started having arguments with myself in my head, as that normally doesn’t kick in for a while – the excitingness of starting something so full of promise usually keeps me going quite well. I had a little voice in my head for most of the afternoon and evening, reasoning that I had already agreed with myself that I might start a day later than everyone else and therefore should just eat today in order to feel better, and start on the foodpacks tomorrow. I somehow managed to work through this, which I think was a mixture of having my boyfriend here until 9pm (it’s hard to give up in front of someone who is totally supporting you through this), not having much food in the house anyway, and smoking a little more than usual (thank sweet fuckety fuck for fags).

The last time I did Lighterlife, I started out brilliantly. It took so very little effort to get into it and get used to having the foodpacks, and I didn’t suffer at all in the early stages. However, I fell off the wagon about 4 weeks in and I think it was a slippery slope after that. I am hoping that this time the opposite will happen, and that after a difficult start, things will get easier as I go along.

I think the worst part at this stage is the hunger. I’m sure a lot of fatties like me would be the same, and admit that it isn’t often we feel hungry, and therefore it’s a strange thing to have to deal with for any length of time. The hunger mostly passes once your body goes into ketosis, but this can take a couple of days. Although I fully believe in Lighterlife, there are times when you walk past the fruitbowl and wonder just what the shitting fuck is so wrong with you that you can’t allow yourself a handful of grapes, or a satsuma. This will pass too though, having been over 9 weeks into the course the first time I did it, I have the benefit of knowing how easy it can be.

After a while, once the food packs and the water become the norm, you can start to feel quite righteous actually. I did it over Christmas the first time, and it was surprisingly easy. The thought of being the only one to come into the New Year having lost 7lbs rather than put it on was enough to keep me going I think, and I actually felt really pleased with myself for happily saying no thanks to everything, when everyone else was sat there undoing their trousers with the bloat. It felt especially good when I returned to my class after 2 weeks, and I was the only one who didn’t cheat at all. It really didn’t make a blind bit of difference to my Christmas that I didn’t eat or drink, and I keep trying to remind myself of this when I wonder how I will cope with various situations in the next few months. I would really really really rather spend the next 3 months losing the weight, and the following month learning how to maintain my weight, so that I can fully enjoy my summer.

I did the dreaded photo thing with my boyfriend this afternoon. At Lighterlife they take before and after pictures, but all you get inbetween is weigh ins and measurements taken each week. I intend to have a photo taken every week, and have decided I will post it here, along with the weight I am when the photo was taken. We took 2 sets of photos, one photo clothed, and pictures from front, side and back while I was naked. I have to admit I bloody hated it. As much time as I spend naked with my boyfriend, there is a big difference to being curled up in bed in the dark and being stood starkers in harsh light. Still, the point is that there is evidence of exactly how I look now, that will help to keep me from ever returning to it. In three months time I will be able to compare pictures and be in no doubt about the difference (I usually find it hard to feel a difference, even when there clearly is one), and I suppose being disgusted by how I look at this weight isn’t entirely a bad thing, as it will hopefully spur me on in the maintenance phase.

I can’t believe I am being so brave, but here we go, here is the first photo. Please bear in mind I am both tired and hungover, and that I am also finding the act of standing in front of a camera in all my flollopy glory, quite horrific. Today I weigh 230lbs. That’s 16st 6lbs, or REET CHUFFIN LARDY in layman’s terms. Thank fuck I’ve got my wibbly arse in gear and started this.