After my bike got stolen on Sunday, I found myself in a stinking blue funk. I was sad and upset on Sunday, but Monday, it felt different. I felt violated and vulnerable, and it was really hard to get out of bed. So I didn't. I dragged myself out literally at the last minute to head to work.
And I did the same pretty much all week.
It was, admittedly, a pretty deep depression for the loss of something material I'd owned for only six months. I realized, though, that it was not unlike the breakdown I had in the Apple store when I first started losing weight ... much of the sadness over the bike was sadness I've been holding in about other things - recent losses and heartbreak, transitions I hadn't properly grieved.
A few days off with some cathartic sobbing would have been perfect. When I felt better, get right back on the horse. But since moving to California, my panic reflex to soothe with food has been reignited. And while I was proud of myself for throwing out the leftover cookies I made for the woman who gave me an interim replacement bike, the next morning I found a flat rear tire with a giant hole in it, as well as an unexpected care package from a friend back in Chicago with plenty of off-plan things in it on my porch.
One of my favorite success story bloggers, Jane, wrote about resisting temptations around the holidays, and I've kept a quote from her post on my desktop since she wrote it (emphasis hers):
I gave up milk chocolate when I released milk fat from my food plan. That has not been easy. Some days I hate that I cannot have it. BUT PLEASE NOTE: I have never hated it an hour or a day later. Fast food restaurants are not an option for me today. Pizza has not been on my food plan for two years but I admit that when time is short I miss being able to just order pizza. For two years I have not ordered the pizza and there as never been a morning where I regretted the decision not to have pizza the night before.In the beginning of my journey, this wasn't a struggle. I craved junk, but I fought it. I wanted to be healthy more than I wanted to hurt myself with food. I went to bed in tears so many nights, but I always woke up feeling good about my choices. Lately, though, it's like I can't seem to remember that you always, always, always regret the binge. There are no excuses. I know I ought to do better, but in the moment, I feel out of control. My willpower feels depleted, my motivation disappears. I know better, but I can't do better. All I can think about is the high.
And the thing about highs is, they're always followed by lows.
I weighed myself before baking and saw 191, one pound under my lowest recorded Chicago weight (though I was also dehydrated post-bike/run/walk; more realistically, I was probably down to 193 or 194). And I weighed again the next morning, post-binge ... back at 198. Two weeks of work undone in in two days. And it can't be blamed on sodium, because it's stayed at 198 since Tuesday. My eating is back to normal, but with exercise pretty much halted (a few walks, 2-4 miles, not much in terms of calorie burning), it's not enough for me to lose.
I had a really significant experience on Tuesday night, one that merits its own post, and Wednesday was when things turned around. A few books that I had ordered arrived at the library (Donald Miller's "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years" and Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma"), and I spent the afternoon sitting on a campus bench in the sun, devouring Miller's book. I finished it the next morning in bed and just completely loved it.
After I finished the book, I got dressed and walked downtown to the bike shop. They said there have been a ton of reported bikes stolen lately, and since their shop offers lifetime repairs on bikes sold there, they sometimes get stolen bikes brought in. So they copied the original receipt I brought in (with the bike's serial number on it) and said they'd keep an eye out. Between that and the police report, I feel good. I don't have my bike back, but I did all I could.
And after looking around for a little while, I decided to order my same exact bike, the men's black Raleigh Venture with an upgrade to thicker tires since I usually bike over 100 miles a week on paths with lots of thorny trees. And they said it should be here in about a week. I'm not thrilled at the thought of another week with no riding, but in the meantime, I'll get back to being active in the ways that I can.
So all in all, this week was not my best. But I'm determined to beat this thing once and for all, and I still have nearly half of February to refocus and move past this stupid plateau. I have so many big goals I want to accomplish, and off-plan eating doesn't get me where I want to be.
What about you? How was your week? For American readers, any plans for the long weekend? I'll probably walk to the lake out by the university and read the Michael Pollan book ... if I haven't finished it by then!