Monday, September 27

Mellowing with Age

Over time I got to where I was wiping out so many foods from my diet--and I've little experience with most any food that is 'real' so not much variety was left--that instead of feeling enthused about recipes and issues, the way I did when I began this blog a few years ago, I just felt kinda demoralized. Like, even if I were eating on plan, how could my plain burgers and plain baked chicken breasts be of interest to anybody else?

Despite my occasional success with my teen, the most common event is that she doesn't want to be on lowcarb and whether via drama-queen or pleading, eventually I make the lousy decision to agree with her 'somewhat' and then slide completely off the wagon, UNDER the wagon.

As my insane weight when I began all this makes clear, my metabolism is not particularly normal. Normal people do not weigh 520, not ever. I lost a lot of weight, not remotely enough, but I'm still pretty huge. And I don't really need to eat horribly to gain weight. I just need to eat. But it's worse because if I'm not pointedly eating lowcarb, which amounts to 'mostly fats/protein', it's not merely that I'm eating carbs, it's that I'm not eating protein, and eventually I will start to overeat, simply because my body's starving for amino acids. I know that by now. Why this is ever still a problem is beyond me.

I considered not posting. Figured maybe I should close the blog and forget it. Being somewhat Type-A in personality, I would sooner gets shots and bruises than confess to any weakness, or be forced to spend any time around medical places. I think it's important if one's going to blog for a given 'thing' -- lifestyle, food choice, whatever -- that they be a positive and decent example of it.

Right now I'm kind of an example of someone who got demoralized, gave up, got it together again, then screwed up / got careless, shrugged it off, kinda forgot about it on purpose for awhile, repeated several times and several different approaches, and then realized I felt horrible, I was fatter, and had gained enough weight to make my eyeballs fall out on the scale, bounce a couple times and roll across the floor. I'm shocked and horrified it's that much. I honestly didn't think it would be that much.

So I can't decide if I should wallow in my pathetic failing so much that I just close the blog and let people who can actually maintain the eating plan as good examples do this, and spare people my clearly imperfect  example, or if I should just get over myself and start where I am and use the blog to force myself to pay more attention for awhile, to what I eat, to issues, to positive thinking about it all.

Emotionally I want to do the former, but intellectually I know it would be healthier to do the latter.


Meanwhile, I noticed tonight that I must be mellowing with age. Tonight I stir-fried a bunch of stuff to dump into omelettes or on burgers over the next 2-3 days. Zucchini, squash, anaheim chilies, white onion, portabella mushrooms, a small red potato. I would not previously have allowed the potato. But the kid likes them. Small amounts of small ones now and then are my little compromise.

I am working on being less extremist. Less of the "I MUST eat X and I CANNOT eat Y" and more of the "PJ, just plan something to eat that is relatively decent and move on. Nobody is going to die over 7 slices of potato mixed into a big bowl of other veggies, only a big spoon of which is used with any meal serving. If this small compromise helps the kid like it a little better, and it's not severely harmful, isn't her being content on LC more important?"

Will people relate to me? Or find it pitiful and embarrassing? (More likely, not a single person reads this blog anymore because I went so long without posting, sigh.) I don't know. But I always wanted to be honest here so there you have it.

I'm getting more mellow with age. But I'm also just going back on plan after a chunk of time that added a whole bunch of weight back to my frame. Ironically, just after I had the FIRST sign of possible weight loss I'd had in a couple of years, after the hyper-nutrient phase. I feel like a complete freakin idiot, a failure, and a horrible example. But, I'd like to do better. I did well for a long time before gaining back what I recently have.


Marina Valentin-McCormack said...

I identify with you SO much!! I've followed your steps, almost word-for-word, from the militant food vigilance to the slacking off to the step-on-the-scale shock. Maybe you're just demonstrating what we [lots of us] really have to go thru before we reach a reasonable, live-able lifestyle. Personally, I'd like to follow your process, & see where you go from here. Rather than feel ashamed (I even identify with the type-A, hate to admit failure part), you're just voicing what's happening to a lot of us. Go for it!

ItsTheWooo2 said...

Sorry to hear about your weight troubles. Don't feel terrible, in the grand scheme of things you have been successful. If you take a population of people, and ask those people how many have been successful following a dietary plan for any length of time, MOST people would not have done as good of a job as you. It's very hard for most people to eat a restricted diet... thats why gastric bypass is so popular, as it is forced adherence to a low carbohydrate fat limited diet.
People are just wired to eat whatever they want whenever they want. Yes low carb curbs our appetites (somewhat, not perfectly) but the bottom line is we are fighting our evolutionarily conserved instincts when we do any sort of diet. It's worthwhile to try, but we should expect malaise and difficulty and blips.
I'm relatively lucky in that I have very, very few cravings for carbs and never have so it is quite easy for me to eat low carb. WHen I do get carb cravings I can easily make a low carb replacement. Or, I can have a small portion of the carb food (i.e. a few bites of whatever it is that looks good).
I also get hypoglycemic attacks and depressive moods following any dietary transgressions so it is quite easy for me to be like "I'm never doing that again" after eating too much rice or something. I feel SO BAD eating too many carbs, which incidentally isn't a lot of carbs at all.
I have stopped forcing myself to eat anything. If I don't eat veggies, I don't give a crap. Oh well. Remember the MOST important thing is to not eat too many carbs or too many calories... complicating matters by forcing yourself to eat certain foods is only going to make things more difficult. I do feel better when I eat more fiber though, so I try to eat at least a couple veg per day because it does seem to help me, appetite and weight. It just isn't super important... and I don't necessarily believe that a high veggie diet is superior to a moderate/low veg diet, as long as a few veg are in the diet that's all that matters.
I've been successful with weight maintenance for the most part but I realize this could change at any time. Occasionally my weight creeps upward when my eating gets crappy and I've got to reel myself back in. It feels awful every time it happens, but it will happen again and again because the bottom line is I"m a fatty and I'm only thin because of this special diet... so if I stop eating the special diet, boom, fatness.

Anonymous said...

I have missed you while you were gone. Love ya and want to hear from you no matter what you have to say. Good luck on your new(ish) plan.

Anonymous said...

I wasn't bored at all; I think we can all relate to the post; I think you're being WAY too hard on yourself about the weight gain, etc. (good grief, dude, how many people who've dieted can say they lost, let alone kept off, even 20 lbs. let alone 100?!?!) and maybe too easy on yourself about the potato (one potato is enough to throw yourself out of ketosis, which makes everything SO much harder (appetite, cravings, getting back in, etc.). The kid needs a healthy mom way more than a stoopit potato. And how old is this kid? Maybe the kid can pitch in more and prep. foods to suit, while you eat what you need to eat, which has got, it seems to me, to be priority #1; I really don't see how anyone can do anything as hard as dieting (the hardest thing most of us has had to do in life, losing a substantial amount of weight) without making it the #1 priority.

Bottom line: keep blogging or we'd miss you; your struggle is ours, and it's useful that you share it. And give yourself some credit: your accomplishments are immense!

WyomingDiva said...

I'm with you, PJ. Trying to 'mellow' out here as well and eat and live a more realistic life, rather than a perfect/idealistic one.

I hope you don't close your blog - I enjoy reading you.


Orodemniades said...

Please don't close your blog - you're one of the few lc'ers who seem to be where I'm at, too, ie: doing it successfully then losing the plot.

lowcarbconfidential said...

I'm kinda in the same mindset - if you read some of my recent posts I feel as if the diet became a form of self-hatred. I took a breather, and am now looking for a middle ground - one that is more focused on health and life balance instead of trying to figure every which way I can squeeze a few more ounces off the morning weigh-in.

I'll be honest - I don't know how to do this yet - but I'm going to try and it seems I'm not alone.

Keep writing.

Carne said...

Hey girl,

Sorry to hear about the "troubles." At least you reacted with time- I have total faith that you can get back on track and continue your weight loss journey. I am rooting for you!

Anonymous said...

Just catching up on your blog, and I'm very glad you're writing in it again.

As one of the previous comments said, you're demonstrating/sharing what a lot of us go through along the way. I'm all for positive, but I like reading about what's really going on, too. A kind of 'tell it like it is' is much better and more inspiring than something that isn't real.

Yours is a very good blog, and I hope you keep writing.

PJ said...

Thanks you guys, a whole bunch, for being so kind and supportive. I sometimes think that some of the social prejudice fat (esp. REALLY fat) people face 24/7 sometimes seeps into the bones and makes one assume that everyone is predisposed to some terrible opinion about you... so being anything less than perfect in any other way is unthinkable. People in the lowcarb blog world remind me that this is not true, and there's a lot of warm smart people who don't have that issue. I appreciate the feedback. Thanks again.


Patti said...

First time reader. You have a gift for words, PJ. I do not - however, I found great inspiration here. Thank you for your willingness to be so real with us.