Tag Archives: willpower

One Battle At A Time

One of the guys who I’ve worked alongside for the last couple of years moved on to start a new job last week, and although I was out and about on his last day, when I arrived at the office after the weekend, his parting gift of chocolate for the team was lying in wait on the desk as I walked through the door.

I wasn’t bothered by it on Monday. Beyond a fleeting thought along the lines of how thoughtful he’d been to leave it, it didn’t really register. Yesterday on the other hand, the same chocolate drove me to hell and back. Especially around mid-afternoon when I made a cup of tea.

I’d eaten lunch at 11.40am because the roast beef sandwich on soft wholemeal bread that I’d carefully made to bring to work had toyed with me all morning. Holding out until the clock was at least edging towards 12.00pm had been a miracle in itself given the number of times my mind had unwrapped the foil over the course of the morning. To be honest, it was lucky to survive my journey to work, because It was just one of those days, you know? The kind where your mind is constantly pre-occupied with what you’re going to eat.

I don’t often eat bread these days, maybe once or twice a week. It’s not particularly a trigger food for me – well, not unless we’re talking about warmed Tiger bread lathered with salted butter obviously – but it just always strikes me as a bit heavy on the old food budget and I begrudge spending the points. However, the cold beef left over from supper the night before had begged to be eaten as I’d done a recce of the fridge, so there it was, locked and loaded. And gone, by 11.45am.

Thing is, I can smash down a sandwich in no time. At least with my usual salad box it takes me a beat between mouthfuls to chase a shred of lettuce around with my fork. I might pause to add a little salad cream here or there, or a little seasoning. With a pre-made sandwich, there’s no messing around is there? It was like the culinary equivalent of premature ejaculation. No foreplay, and over in seconds once I’d unwrapped the foil…  yes, yes, YES…oh. Are we done?

By mid afternoon I could’ve eaten my own arm, I mean I was starving. And every time I walked back to my desk from one meeting or another I was greeted by the sight of these two boxes of chocolates. Bit by bit they started to chip away at my resolve. Surely one wouldn’t hurt? I’ve proved that I can survive without chocolate haven’t I, I mean look at me…we’re well into May and I haven’t eaten any since Christmas. I’ve got so much skin in the game it’s unreal, so surely I’d be safe with just one?

I got as far as saying fuck it out loud as my hand reached for the box, only to be stopped in my tracks by a colleague. She looked so genuinely shocked that I might be about to break my long run of resisting temptation that I put the box down and retreated back to my chair with my tail between my legs. And she was right. Of course she was right. She knew as well as I did that I wouldn’t have stopped at one. I would have had three, or seven, or maybe ten and then I’d have stopped at the store on my way home and bought some more. I’d probably still be chewing them as I write this.

Even though I know what lies in store if I awaken the beast, I almost went there. I just about clung on with my fingernails, but I’m hoping today will be easier. It’s a brand new week. My conversation with the Shitbird Scale this morning contained a few naughty words…I’m not sure this experiment about how and when I spend my points is working. I’ll stick with it for another week and then make a call.

I’ve felt vulnerable and a bit out of control these last few days, so I’m claiming yesterday as a victory. That’s how wars are won, right? One battle at a time 🙂

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A Wardrobe Full Of Nothing To Wear

It occurred to me this week that we’ve stumbled into Spring, and I didn’t even notice. There are lambs in the fields and the clocks have gone forward…it’s light when I leave for work and when I come home, and I even managed two commutes this week without wearing a coat. I know, right?  

It’s time for a bit of a spring clean I think. More importantly, it’s time for a bit of a wardrobe clear-out. I’ve got to hold my hands up and admit that since my arse commenced its steady march down the sizes, I may have treated myself to the odd thing here or there. Says the queen of understatement. Yes okay whatever, you caught me with a smoking credit card.   It’s hard not to get carried away with yourself though, at the prospect of being able to buy nice stuff for the first time in years. My wardrobe is groaning.

I’ve got to be honest, this time of year has been known to fill me with dread. I always struggled with the transition from winter wardrobe (black pants, shapeless swingy stretchy top) to spring wardrobe (black pants, shapeless swingy stretchy top) to summer wardrobe (black pants, shapeless swingy stretchy top). It felt like the whole world except me ditched anything black in favour of floaty fabrics and linens in lovely spring-like colours.

I’m only halfway through my weight-loss journey, in fact I’m not quite halfway. I’m almost there. I’m seventy eight pounds down and I’ve got ninety seven pounds left to lose, so obviously I’m nowhere near Skinny Town yet, but I do have a toe in the suburbs. I’m no longer required to shop only in fat-girl stores for one thing. Normal shops for normal people now stock a size I can wear, and trust me when I say I’ve taken full advantage of that.

I’m still doing that weird thing though, where I’m buying a size smaller that I really need. And I’m buying way too much stuff. I know that. I keep telling myself that I’m only passing through this size so chill my fucking boots and just have a few essential wardrobe staples but it’s like all my willpower is being used up in the food department and there’s none whatsoever left over to maintain control of what I’m spending on clothes.

The irony of all that of course, is that I’m still not happy with how most of it looks. I’ve gone from pulling on those shapeless stretchy tops and avoiding eye contact with the mirror, to pulling stuff on then obsessing in front of the mirror, twisting this way and that to try and make sure that whatever I’ve put on doesn’t show off my back fat, or my spectacular muffin top, or that it covers enough of my arse to quash those wicked rumours that my rear view looks like puppies fighting in a sack whenever I take a step.

Is it just me?

I keep telling myself that I’ll feel happier when I get to the next size down, or the next. I wish I could make my fucking mind up, you know? I’m much happier now than I was, of course I am. And I do have some stuff that I like wearing because I know it flatters my shape and hides all of the above, but going back to the wardrobe thing, clothes which are too big, new clothes that are too small yet and stuff that fits me now that I like or that I like but won’t wear for all the reasons I’ve talked about are all squashed into one place.

I’ve also got some stuff in storage from my last attempt at getting skinny and I’m sure some of it was the size I’m wearing now, which I haven’t fit into for at least the last five years and probably longer. Don’t get me wrong, most of it’s probably a crime against fashion by now because it’s a few years since it saw the light of day and the world has moved on, but I should really go and dig all that out too for a good root through. It’s definitely time for a sort out.

Looks like that’s my weekend taken care of. Have a good one y’all  🙂

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I Didn’t See That One Coming…

So here was I, coasting along under the rather cocky misapprehension that wrestling with the Asshole voice was a pastime well and truly relegated to days gone by. I mean, he’s been silent for so long that surely he must have relocated to someone else’s head, right? Sadly, no. Yesterday I was subjected to four hours of torture over a cheese and pickle sandwich.

I found myself in a catered meeting at work facing my old nemesis, the buffet. I knew it was coming, and I was cool with it, you know? I’ve spent the last 81 days being a rock star with my food choices so I strode confidently into the meeting room, and I even picked my seat before throwing a glance towards the lunch table. Let’s just say it hasn’t always happened in that order…in the past, whilst trying to give the impression that I’m holding back, I’ve been known to cover the area between door and lunch table at warp speed, knocking people over like skittles in my haste to fix a plate.

Yesterday it was a good buffet, I mean it was all seeded wholemeal bread with green stuff, and some wraps with chicken as well as a big bowl of crisps and some cakes.  No sausage rolls or fries or wedges, just a handful of puff-pastry savouries…really, aside from the crisps and cake it was wholesome and healthy. And I made careful choices from the sandwiches, mentally calculating my weight-watcher points as I went. The crisps didn’t worry me, and I barely noticed the cakes. It’s all good, I remember sitting and thinking I’ve so got this…look at me, I’m cured!

Famous last words, right? After we’d finished eating, and there were just the dregs of the buffet table left, well that’s when the fun started. There were two cheese and pickle sandwiches on a tray that nobody had picked. Me, I’d gone for the ham salad ones, and a chicken wrap. I’d scrutinised and rejected the egg mayo and BLT and of course the cheese ones on the basis that they contained stuff from the naughty list and were too point-heavy. I was happy with my choice, right up until I clocked those two leftover cheese butties.

Go on…they won’t kill you. They’re tiny, probably not even an ounce of cheese between ’em… (as I looked at two wedges of cheese clearly cut with a generous hand)…you’ve been so good and besides you’re having chicken for tea and there’s hardly any points in that, so you can afford the cheese. You deserve cheese, you really do. It’s not cake, or crisps, is it? That would be a bad choice but you know cheese is good for your bones. 

On, and on, and on, for four hours. The meeting finished at 4pm, and as I threw a glance back over my shoulder as I left the room and mentally waved farewell to those two cheese sandwiches which were looking a bit curled around the edges by that point, I still wanted them.

I probably could’ve spared the points but you know what, I recognise cheese as a trigger food. It wouldn’t have been the two cheese sandwiches which left collateral damage, it would’ve been the pack of Cathedral City strong cheddar that I might have picked up on the way home which just begged to be grilled until it was bubbly and golden and on my plate. 

Truth is, I can’t allow myself to get the taste. If two curling sandwiches can torture me for four hours, then allowing it over the threshold is never going to end well is it? It was hard not to eat them but on reflection, by the skin of my teeth I escaped unscathed.

Guess I’m still a work in progress after all 🙂

 

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Mrs Smug From Smugsville

So, I’ve been staring at a blank page for ages trying to think of a way to tell you that I managed to stick to my guns and emerge from holiday with my food sobriety intact, it’s just that every which way I try makes me sound like Mrs Smug from Smugsville. Fact is, I did it! It seems that miracles do happen, and despite the best efforts of an army of chefs I’m still motoring and I’ve managed to come out the other end 59 days food sober.

And, I weigh less than I did when we set off.  I mean don’t get overexcited because we’re only talking one quarter of one pound but hey, any hole’s a goal, right?

When I got home I somehow resisted the temptation to run in the front door and hotfoot it upstairs for an immediate confrontation with the Shitbird Scale, because looking at my puffy post-flight waterlogged ankles I didn’t want to give the Asshole voice any leverage to start fucking with my head…I can pretty much predict the script, you know? Ah look, you’ve gained weight even though you’ve deprived yourself for a whole week…it just wasn’t worth it. Go buy a Daim cake immediately and knickers to the diet…

I managed to hold off stepping on until yesterday, and I can’t even begin to tell you how strong that makes me feel. It means that I’m not reliant on the scale to validate my success, you know? I knew on the inside that I’d pulled it off and really that’s all that mattered. I hoped that Shitbird Scale would acknowledge my hard work but I was happy to wait until my body had gotten over the journey before checking in.

God of Pain invited me to hop on his scale when I went for a double session of torture last night because he insists his is the official number, and his scale declared a two pounds loss. Now, if you remember his scale also said I’d gained a pound just before I went which I really hadn’t. But whatever, all things being equal I’ve still emerged a cock-hair skinnier from a holiday which may well have spelled dieting disaster and I’ll take that thank you very much 🙂

There were moments during the trip where it was really tough. One bar on the ship in particular served tapas-style nibbles whenever you ordered drinks, and I had to ask my friend to move the plate out of sight. She looked at me like I’d lost the plot and I was reminded once again that the way a food addict looks at the world is different to normal people, you know? My friend was happy to sit there and chat with a plate of breaded cheese wheels and bite-size frittata and quiche and meatballs right under her nose, where for me, conversation turned into white noise and the plate became my sole focus. The need to reach out and take one after another until they were gone was overwhelming.

And I get it – anyone who’s lucky enough not to have experienced the sheer power of food cravings in that way could never even hope to understand…there’s little wonder my friend regarded my request to hide the plate as a bit weird. But I’m proud of the way in which I managed it, in the moment. It meant I ate one or two, but I didn’t vaporise them all. And at the end of the day, after years of friendship it probably doesn’t come as breaking news that I’m a bit weird.

Anyway, onwards…it’s good to be home. My food plan is nailed on, and my exercise is on track…the next hurdle to navigate is my bi-annual girly weekend which is happening next week. A long weekend of gossip and laughter fuelled by prosecco and gin.

Bring it on, I can’t wait. I’ve totally got this 🙂

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My Skinny Talisman

I set off for the office yesterday morning with a bit of added spring in my step, it being my last full day in work and all…don’t you just love that feeling when you’re winding down for holidays? I have a few bits to finish off today, before my out of office gets whacked on at lunchtime and I head off to get my spray tan and my holiday toes. Not even the thought of those paper knickers can dampen my mood, I’m too giddy for words 🙂

Yesterday was the ultimate test of my pre-holiday willpower, and as I took my place around the table at work for our full day meeting I did a quick recce to see whether the usual nibbles had been provided…who am I kidding, of course they bloody had. There was a box of flapjacks to my right, a box of marshmallow teacakes to my left, several bowls containing wrapped sweets dotted around, and in the middle of the table was a massive bowl of green bananas.

Flapjacks are my favourite. So are marshmallow teacakes, as it happens. Green bananas are not. They make my teeth squeak and my toes curl, and unless they can be dipped in hot frothy coffee (yes, I know, I’m weird) they’re to be avoided at all costs.

I’m puffing my chest out with pride as I tell you I didn’t put so much as a toe out of line. Well, in the spirit of full disclosure I did risk squeaky teeth by having a crack at a green banana, but as for the rest…not a single naughty morsel passed my lips. I wasn’t bothered, not one little bit.

Now, I’d love to tell you that this masterclass in restraint set off some kind of skinny chain-reaction, but according to God of Pain’s scale this morning I’m a pound up. On Wednesday night the same scale said I was two pounds down. His scale is clearly as barking mad as the Shitbird in my bathroom, however due to the Asshole voice’s continued hiatus I shrugged it off as some kind of normal body fluctuation and it hasn’t even come close to putting a crimp in my mood.

So, the challenge now is keeping it going, right? I am forty seven days food sober and tomorrow I am flying out to meet our ship in a land far far away, where chefs will be lying in wait around every corner with the intention of feeding me. Let’s be honest, it does have the potential for disaster written all over it. I’ve been really excited about the trip whilst harbouring a degree of trepidation about how I’m going to deal with the barrage of food opportunities. ‘Just saying no’ isn’t always that easy for a food addict.

That said, my recent steadfast occupation of the sweet spot has made me feel a lot more relaxed about the whole thing, and I’m also taking a secret weapon in my suitcase. God of Pain introduced a three month clean eating challenge back in the New Year, and various milestones of food sobriety have been rewarded with a magnetic disk. Bronze seven, fourteen and twenty eight days for month one, the same in silver for month two and gold in month three. I’m currently on silver fourteen and I’m due for my upgrade to silver twenty eight in nine days’ time…the day I get back from holiday.

If I fall off the wagon, I have to give up this hard-won badge of honour and start all over again. Over my dead body, right? So it’s coming on holiday with me. My silver fourteen will be liberated from its spot on my cooker hood and will be carried with me right throughout my holiday so it can act as my skinny talisman and help me keep my eye on the prize.

That, along with the thought of having to post a picture in here of my conversation with the Shitbird Scale when I get home, might just help me to get the balance right between eating well, and diving headlong into a week of culinary hedonism. Watch this space… 🙂

I may get chance to post a few pictures on Facebook over the next week or so, wi-fi permitting and I’ll be back a week on Sunday. Lots of love to all in the meantime and I’ll see you on the other side!

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