formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Monday, July 6, 2009

Weighting... Watching...

OK, show of hands, please… how many of you have your self-esteem all wrapped up in your body-image or weight?

Come on… hands up.

Wow, that’s a lot of you.

I feel your pain.

Remember how I said I have a love-hate relationship with my hair? Yeah… I have the same sort of relationship with my body. Actually, there’s little love involved. I have a couple of parts that are pretty good (and have received some critical acclaim ;), but overall? Nope. No love. All the love has, in fact, been extended to the food in my life.

Like many women, I’m an emotional eater. And I know exactly why. I can trace it back to when I was pretty young… when my ‘safe place’ was my Aunt Jean. She was, and remains, one of my most favorite people on the planet. All my happiest childhood memories center around her and her house. She has three sons, all near my age, so when I (the only girl in the family) visited, I was spoiled rotten. She always made sure to stock up on my favorite treats (and designated them ‘hands-off’ to the boys) and, a great cook, she prepared all my favorite meals. Because my cousins have always been big guys, athletes, and big eaters, there was no such thing as portion control. I ate what I wanted, when I wanted it. Life was so good at my Aunt Jean’s. I was almost always incredibly happy there. And when I was sad, there was a lot of love and a lot of food for comfort. So, for the rest of my life, when I was unhappy or stressed or worried (or happy or feeling celebratory, etc), I went to my safe place – figuratively, anyway – and I ate.

Sound familiar? I’m sure it does for a lot of people.

When I was younger, it didn’t matter. My metabolism was fast and my knees didn’t hurt when I ran. But as I got older, weight crept on. Then I’d realize my jeans didn’t fit anymore and I’d do something about it. Then the weight came back… then I’d do something about it. Then it came back again. Then I just bought new jeans. And the weight stayed. And my self-esteem took a nosedive... a deep, deep nosedive.

But I made a decision last week. I decided that since I know why I eat too much, there is no excuse for doing it anymore. I decided I wasn’t living up to my goal not to be a ‘do as I say, not as I do’ parent and that my daughter deserves a better role model. I decided I was tired of my ass needing its own zip code. I decided that since my baby now weighs 75 pounds, it’s time to (finally) take off the baby weight.

I decided to join Weight Watchers.

I was reluctant to seek out any sort of help or support. I really thought I could do it on my own and when I couldn’t, I felt like a failure. But then I realized I’d really be a failure if I had the resources to fix my problem at my disposal and didn’t use them. So I sucked it up, put on my fat pants, and on Thursday afternoon I stood on a scale in front of another human being. Ugh. But amazingly, and no pun intended, when I got on the scale I felt a huge weight being lifted off my shoulders (though it would have been much better had it been lifted off my ass!).

The program is sensible and smart. I knew I couldn’t do a ‘diet’ or a plan where I had to buy special food or cut out entire food groups. That just doesn’t make any sense to me. I know myself. I have to live in the real world… I have to be able to eat out and splurge every now and then. This plan isn’t a diet and I can eat whatever I want… but to make it work, I have to make some choices… choices I should have been making all along. And if I make the wrong ones, getting on that scale every week will be twice as hard. I’m just not up for that, so I think the right choices will be much easier to make than they’ve been in the past. The program also focuses on working out, which isn’t an issue for me. I’m already active and don’t find it hard (though I could stand to push myself more than I do).

The way it works is that all foods are assigned a point-value and you get a certain number of points to eat each day. They’re adequate but certainly not abundant (duh). However, you get 35 extra points every week, which you can spend any way you’d like. And can I just tell you, a beer is only worth three points!! How cool is that?! A glass of wine is only two points, but, as far as Weight Watchers is concerned, a glass is four ounces. Pffffftttttt. That’s not a glass, that’s a swig. Still, I can drink more than a bottle a week and not go over my points.

(And I totally sound like I have a drinking problem now, don’t I? In addition to my eating problem. Nice. Seriously, I don’t drink that much. I only drink socially and since my social life is non-existent at the moment, well, you do the math. I just want to know I can drink if I want. Of course, I could use those extra points for actual food, too, which I’m sure will happen on occasion.)

Anyway, as I said, I took the plunge. And so far, so good. I got through the weekend easily, feeling very in control and mindful of what I was putting into my body. I expect to see results and I expect them to be for the long-term. My goal is not to be a size 2 (mostly because that's simply not possible in this lifetime, in this universe). It’s to be fittest and healthiest I can be. It’s to be a good example for my daughter, so that she doesn’t carry on this legacy burden I inherited from my mother, who was very verbal about her own body-image and weight issues (which I am not, by the way… well, not with Ryan, anyway). It’s to find some love for this body that’s got to carry me through the rest of my life. And it's to feel good about myself... about what I can do, about who I am, and about how I look. Because I deserve that… at the very least.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm so proud of you, Diane!!! You're gonna do great, and hit your goal weight in no time!!! :) Missy

Heather said...

Way to go! Mama has had a lot of success with Weight Watchers - and I've found myself doing well when I am diligent enough to count points. It's easy to follow, and you don't feel like you're deprived of anything since nothing is off limits.
Good luck!! I know you can do it :)

And I was definitely one of those with her hands up when you asked that question. *sigh*

f1trey said...

2 cents worth.....losing weight is a functio of how much you put into it....if you look for the minimum required ..you will lose only a minimum....20 minutes of exercise is the MINIMUM...the more you do the faster it comes off..... go girl!

mo.stoneskin said...

Go girl.

I, too, am an emotional eater. Feeling sad? Burger and a pint. Metabolism is just fast enough, but only just, it's slowing down very fast.

sherri said...

I'm ashamed to admit it, but yes, my self esteem is very affected by my weight. (Right now being at an all time high-the weight, NOT the self esteem). I may just join along with you. It is a smart plan, and do-able FOREVER and does keep one mindful of amounts and calories and food types going into our bodies.

Smart.

Andy said...

Best of luck! Capricorn and her mom have both used WW before, with some success. I think it's smart to go that route, rather than a fad diet, because that's not sustainable.

Just don't do one of those crazy Hollywood Cleanses.

lizspin said...

I'm an emotional eater too, but never even had an Aunt Jean.

Weight Watchers is an awesome program. . . it may be calling my name right now.

Tabitha@ichoosebliss said...

Way to go Diane!!
I'm an emotional eater as well, so I feel your pain.

Amy McMean said...

hey i watched Gone baby Gone on saturday.

Great minds.

Jean said...

You make so much sense you can be scary. Smart, smart gal you are!


p.s. read The Shack based on your recommendation. Loved it!!

hautepocket said...

Congratulations! I had a good friend use Weight Watchers and it worked really well for her. The 35 extra weekly points really came through for her in the wine department too. ;)

Good luck!!

Shanna said...

Good for you Diane! So glad you have the support to help you reach your goal!
I've heard great things about WW - and only 3 points for a beer!? Yay!!

Jenners said...

Hand raised!!!!

I had great luck with Weight Watchers before I had my son, but then I slacked off and everything and then some came back. I've dabbled with the online version and I would do OK for 2 weeks and then quit. I'm now doing this Game On Diet, which is making lifestyle changes, eating better and exercising (plus drinking water) and you earn points and try to beat other teams. It is working for me because of the game and team aspect. I wish you the best of luck with WW -- it works if you stick to it!!!

Mel said...

I love that you spent a whole paragraph talking about your alcohol consumption. ;)

hebba said...

Good for you! I am with you in spirit, as I'm trying to take off the weight I put on for the last two months while trying to lose. Oh, those food journals. GRRRR!

blognut said...

You're adorable. And you know I get this, right? :)

And? I have a few points in my hand right now! Hee hee!

HLiza said...

Good luck Diane..I think all women go through this..I was on the right track before the accident happened..but I'll be back on it in no time..you'll see. The bets thing is..you'll be happy with the result if you do it for you..not for anybody else.

Thanks for the well-wishes..I'm on the mend.

dianne said...

Good girl for taking control of your health, not just the weight, I've been there too with the emotional eating and need to get a few pounds off myself before it gets to be a big problem.
WW is good, a couple of my friends have had great success because you are not being deprived of feeling hungry. :-) ♡

Protege said...

Ah, Diane I admire your determination! I think we all have that feeling about our body, but I love the way you put it in your last paragraph, that you just want to be the healthiest and the fittest you can be.;))I am wishing you the best of luck in achieving your goal.;)) Now that reminds me that I too have a few pounds to shed.;))

Debbie said...

this hot home..2 days a go I made a simliar decision! I however, don't eat when I am sad! its easy or me to be 'skinny' when my life falls apart! BUT for the first time in 3 years I am at peace and guess what..I gain weight! More then is right for me! BUT greater is the health and energy! I am OK with my weight and size IF I know I am healthy and in shape! AND I can tell you I am not!! I am trying to just eat healthy but have heard so many good things about weight watchers that will keep it in mind... Good luck! And good for you!

LMN said...

Diane, I love you for this post. There are many of us who don't WANT to raise our hands in response to your questions, but ultimately I am one that has to as well!! aaaaahhh!!!

Guess what I did this weekend? ALSO recommitted to Weight Watchers - I do it online, and have never been in to a meeting, but have committed to weighing myself again, for the first time in awhile, come Monday! Eeks! But I know I have to do it. Have just felt a few pounds creeping on again this year (and I actually did well last year), so it's time to get back to the nuts and bolts of points and calories and fat and fiber ... to re-educate myself!!

Love you! Keep us posted (or me, via email) on how you're doing. This has inspired me to truly truly get going!! I am going to go record my points RIGHT NOW.

xoxox
heather

Greenfingers said...

Good luck Diane. I know a few people who have tried it and with a bit of perseverance it did work for them!

Cat said...

Good for you, girl! You're so gorgeous, now you'll feel that way!

A Woman Of No Importance said...

I'm back at WW again too... It's the fixing your brain thing that's the hardest, and you've been clever enough to work out how you got here in terms of comfort eating, Diane... Food was important in my family too, and we celebrated with food, and welcomed guests with food and drink... Hellloooo! Now I have a real problem, but at least I am presently with the programme - I might not be following it like a pilgrim, but it's a start for me...

Good luck to you, sweetheart! It will help with your fabulous marathon running too, non?! xox