I want to increase my numbers for April - both for workouts and weight loss. While it's true that I had a lot of work-related obligations in March that had to take precedence some days, I also had a lot of days when I chose to do nothing, or do less than I could have.
To be completely honest, I'm really, really exasperated by all this. It's been two steps forward and one step back for eight months now. I feel like most days, I'm just treading water, desperately trying not to drown. I'm still breathing, but barely.
I used to love sharing my accomplishments here. Lately, though, it's been a struggle. I've had a hard time seeing what I've done as "accomplishments." I run, I bike, I eat well - but not consistently. I hate giving excuses as much as people hate reading them, so I'm not about to sugar coat it.
February 1: 198
March 1: 195
April 1: 192
My lowest weight for the month was 190 - it lingered there for a few days, then worked its way back up. I'm grateful for being in the 150+ loss range still, but frustrated about starting another month in the 190s.
I'm trying to focus on the fact that, small as it may be, it's movement in the right direction - but what frustrates me more than anything is my inconsistency. I used to lose three pounds in a week. Three in a month? That's the result of not making good choices consistently. I make great decisions for a few days at a time, then get overwhelmed by one thing or another and slip into old habits.
I used to post here every single day. I loved the accountability, as well as sharing my stories and my successes. Now, it's much less frequent, mostly because I can't stand to hear myself complain (and I've received a few e-mails from people who tell me, for one reason or another, that I have no right to complain, that things are really so good for me right now).
The truth is, this used to feel like a safe space for me to vent, and sometimes it doesn't, mainly when I get feedback like that.
This blog is a glimpse into my life, raw and exposed. And I'm struggling. I'm depressed. I'm frustrated.
- I'm frustrated about being stuck in a small farm town in central California, and even more anxious thanks to the recently discovered fact that my job here might not be safe. I relocated for this job. I gave up so much to be here. And even though I am profoundly unhappy here, it's still a full-time job that pays well. So I'm also frustrated by not knowing what to think or feel.
- I'm frustrated about loving so many people who are thousands of miles away. When I first started living healthier, I recognized that "food doesn't love me back - food is not my friend, my friends are my friends." I lived by that. Here, though, I'm struggling without any close relationships, debilitated by the pain of missing my friends and family. I love visiting, but every trip hurts because I know it's temporary. I'm reminded of how wonderful it was to have local love and support, but it's fleeting, and the feeling of safety is taken away just as soon as it comes back.
- I'm frustrated by what feels like I'm failing at something I used to be fairly good at. I lost 150 pounds in a year, but I'm down only 3 pounds in the eight months since then. I've lost and gained the same ten pounds for months. I know the number on the scale isn't everything, but I'm also not terribly proud of my non-scale accomplishments. The half marathon, the race PRs ... I don't value them appropriately because all I can focus on is the fact that I'm all but entirely relapsed into an addiction I formerly had under control.
The thing about overeating, and I can't say this enough, is that it isn't about food for me. I keep trying to remind myself, I want to look and feel my best, and I want it more than I want to eat X. But it isn't really about *wanting* to eat X, Y, or Z. It's a compulsion. I get stressed, frustrated, overwhelmed, and this is how I hurt myself. Some people drink. Some people cut themselves. I eat until it hurts, cry, and take a nap. I always regret it, but in the moment, all I want is the high. I want to shut off the anxiety for a few minutes and lose myself in the good feeling of overeating, even though my logical brain knows it's all temporary and I'll end up feeling worse afterwards.
Somewhat topical, given this week's events: when I was first starting to lose weight, I shared an article I read about an idea called "the lottery effect." People who lose weight, like people who play the lottery, tend to think that if only this one thing wasn't a problem anymore, that everything else would be fine as well. The only thing winning the lottery solves is having money in the bank; the only thing losing weight solves is having a smaller number on the scale. The problems and issues you had before are still there, needing attention. I've been really overwhelmed with problems and issues over the past eight months, mostly because I've tried to ignore them, hoping they'll fade away. Really, though, they've intensified. There's an incredible scream inside me, aching to be released. And I can't keep quiet for much longer.
Right now, my top priority for April is getting my mental stuff in order. As always, I want to lose weight and all that, but above all else, I want to work through these emotional issues. Face my stuff instead of stuff my face, so they say. Reach out to the people who love me when I feel anxious - they understand, and they can help me through it much better than a binge will. Stay active, eat well, drink lots of water - and do it all consistently.
What about you? How was your March? What are your goals for April? How do you work through the emotional side of weight loss?