Of course, I woke up from yesterday feeling like crap because yesterday was Saturday and on Saturdays I routinely fail to nourish my body. It has become a habit for me to stuff my face on Saturday evening. Time to break the habit.
I actually feel kind of hung over, which is not unusual for these episodes. I want to scream at the leaf blower that’s been whirring away outside my window for the past hour. My stomach feels bloated and I haven’t had my coffee this morning, so maybe I’m not in a position to confront reality. But last night I’d considered not admitting to my meltdown. Who wants to liveblog their eating disorder? Well, I do apparently. I need to sort out of all of the emotions and compulsions driving me to act in such a fucked up way.
In short, I feel guilty and full of regret, but I did feel a lot better when I was eating that dark chocolate. I’d been craving praline pecans but they weren’t that satisfying, after all. I feel like a failure in a lot of ways. Like, how do normal people refrain from eating junk food all of the time? I think I don’t want it, and then I start eating and I just can’t stop because it’s so good! Objectively, I can see it’s not that tasty and I can see that it has zero nutritional value, but my brain somehow disagrees. I just want more! More! More! More!
Maria Kang asks, “What’s your excuse?” How come we don’t all look like fitness models? Well, here’s the answer, Maria; my excuse is that I don’t have control over myself. I am weak. I want to look like a fitness model, but sometimes it seems like a mystery to me that anyone can achieve that look. I just like sugar, okay? I like a lot of sugar. It makes me feel better when I am sitting alone on Saturday and I feel like everyone is off at a party without me. Eating dark chocolate while watching an indie movie on a cold fall night is comforting and reassuring when I can’t find that elsewhere in my life. I like kale and all, but it doesn’t have the same comforting effect.
My excuse is that I am filled with self-loathing before, after and during every single binge eating episode and no one can be healthy and happy when they hate themselves inside and out.
I feel like on Saturday nights, I reach some sort of climax at the end of the week. All of the worry and doubt that I carry around with me during the week, all of the revulsion I feel when I catch a glimpse of myself in a window walking down the street, it all catches up with me when I’m alone on Saturday night, and it just becomes unmanageable. So instead I cope by overeating, and I have to start fresh on Sunday morning.
On this particular Sunday morning, I was reassured by a piece on overeating that aired on NPR. Not only did I laugh at Jamie Kilstein’s description of his binge eating episodes because it struck so close to home, but I agree with his idea that overeating fills some sort of need to self-destruct. I feel like such a failure as a person that even if I do my best all week, I need to sabotage myself on Saturday night. I feel like I am so incapable of achieving what I want, that the idea of being satisfied with myself and my body is so unobtainable that I am naive to want it in the first place.
How can I stop? How can I move forward?
I realized yesterday that I need to abstain from dark chocolate. One thing I’ve noticed over the past few months is that I have “trigger foods”: I can eat something that seems harmless but it always seems to precede a larger binge episode. The best example for me is Diet Coke.A sip of Diet Coke always makes me want more sugar. So it’s easier for me to abstain from Diet Coke entirely than to have it in moderation. I can’t have it in my house and I can’t order it when I go out. Ice cream is another example. I am just not allowed to have ice cream at this point because I can’t handle it in moderation like a responsible adult.
I am not good at moderation. If I understood moderation, I probably never would have weighed 256 lbs at one point in my life. So there are certain foods that I just need to avoid. It’s been working very well for me to say that I am not allowed Diet Coke because I understand exactly where the boundary is. So I think that I need to set some boundaries on dark chocolate. Yes, I know it’s full of antioxidants and whatever else, but I can’t handle it in moderation. It’s candy. I have an addiction.
I have to move forward. It’s the only thing I can do, really. I have a body fat assessment this week and I’m kind of dreading it. My body hasn’t changed in the past 3 months and I thought maybe my eating disorder was improving, but clearly I was mistaken. The best thing I can do at this point is to go back to eating normally and planning my Lean Eating meals, and try to prevent another episode from happening next weekend.
How am I going to do that?
Well, I can’t bring dark chocolate into the house and I guess the praline pecans are off limites, too. But this week I set a bunch of reminders on my phone. Every couple of hours I get a message that says something cheesy: “Remember your goals.”, “Practice your Lean Eating Habits.”, “What can you do in the next 5 minutes to be just a little bit better?”
Like I said, some of these things sound really cliche, but they have been surprisingly helpful in keeping me focused. I seem to breathe a huge sigh of relief every time I get the message, “You are who you want to be.” So last night before I went to bed, I set reminders at 20 minute intervals for next Saturday night. I need some support and I guess it’s going to come from within myself. Some of the messages were more serious: “Break bad habits.” and “You don’t need to give into junk food cravings.” Others were more tongue in cheek: “What’s your excuse?”, “You are the master of your universe.” One of them just says, “Abs!”
We’ll see what happens next weekend. In the meantime I am back to eating normally.
Breakfast – Orange chocolate super shake
Lunch – Scrambled eggs with veggies + a pear
Dinner – Shrimp stir fry with rice
Workout: Twin Peaks Marathon on Netflix. Rest day.
Days since last meltdown: 1