Monday, June 25, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #6

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

Many people come and go throughout the recovery process, and each brings you something different and unique. Write the names of some people in your life who have helped you or who have been positive influences in your recovery. What have they given or taught you?

I've never fully gone through any kind of treatment for my eating disorder. I will write down people who have helped me throughout the many ups and downs of my life...

Mrs. J - She was actually a counselor for the troubled kids who went to a special school in my town called TLC. She counseled students who were truant often or caused a lot of trouble in their classes or were failing or had been arrested for any reason... she tried to "straighten them up" before they got the stigma of having to attend TLC. Once when I went to go visit the nurse with one of my many upset stomachs my senior year of high school, the school nurse sent to me talk to Mrs. J. We talked about everything... She was so incredibly helpful in my recovery from my anorexic tendencies. School made me incredibly anxious and she knew this. She told me straight out that I could go speak with her any time that she was free and she would give me a pass to excuse me from classes... as long as I only visited her when I really needed her. I visited her about once a week usually and just talking to someone and getting all my stresses and fears out really helped. 

My Cousin - *I* - *I* has been through the same things I have and fought the same battles I have. She's a great ear when I need to complain and she tells me things that have helped her in the past. We're two peas in a pod even though ten years separate us.

Sadly, those are the two people who I believe have helped me the most... There are a few other mentions I could make... My cousin Kel, my friend Brenda, my friend Pam, etc... but Mrs. J helped me come out of my anorexia/anxiety phase and into a "normal" life and *I* helps me out now.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #5

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

Have you ever thought about entering treatment? What's stopping you? Write down some ideas about what may be holding you back from accepting professional help. Is Ed telling you not to go? Don't believe him! Push the fear and Ed aside and write down what you would hope to get out of treatment.

I felt rushed through my last exercises. I'm going to try to be more elaborate on this one...

I have never thought about entering a treatment facility for my eating disorder. I have, however, thought about seeking professional help in the form of a counselor or therapist or psychologist. The reason why I haven't gotten any professional help as of yet is because I am from a smaller town and we don't really have much in the form of help. The nearest Overeaters Anonymous meeting is more than 30 miles away.  My insurance isn't good for one thing and for another, I haven't been able to locate anyone in my area that takes my insurance to begin with. Even if I did, my appointments would still be at least $35 each. Since I'm from a small town, we also don't have any free clinics where you can get free counseling or support. So, money and places to go are pretty much the main two reasons why I don't seek professional help.

Ed's only input in this whole shebang is that he doesn't think I'm sick enough to need it. But I'm 27 and have been on blood pressure medication for 2.5 years and I'm 75-80 pounds overweight. I'm thinking if I don't get on this soon I'm going to be as big as a blimp.

I would hope to get the strength and willpower to overcome Ed when he tells me I need to binge. I also have a few other mental issues that I would like to discuss. I believe that they are the reasons why I am the way I am with food and being in control of myself at all times. I think it would be nice if I were just a well-rounded (not round) individual.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #4

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

Trusting someone other than Ed is vital to your recovery. Have any of your loved ones expressed concern for your health? We all need help seeing things from a healthy point of view - not Ed's. Think about people in your life that you trust. Whom will you trust to help rid you of your eating disorder - a family member, doctor, friend? Take the first step and reach out to them.

I put my trust into a lot of people daily. I'm writing this blog which is putting myself out there for someone, anyone, to support me. My loved ones express concern for my health in the aspect that I am currently about 75-80 pounds overweight. I already have high blood pressure... diabetes runs in my family... as does multiple kinds of cancer. They're all concerned that if I don't get my eating under control I'm going to end up with heart disease, diabetes, and more health issues. My health care provider has also shown concern over my growing weight.

My mom is probably one of my biggest supporters in battling my eating disorder. I've discussed doing these reflections with her and she agrees that I do have an eating disorder and I do need to conquer it. I have already reached out to her.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #3

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

Is Ed dominant in your life? Write down what he is telling you right now. When and how often does he show up throughout your day? Is he louder in the morning, at night, at work, at school, or at home?

Sometimes Ed is very dominant in my life and sometimes he isn't. Sometimes I'm stronger than him and sometimes I'm not. Ed shows up when I'm grocery shopping wanting me to buy foods that are easy to binge on... cereal, sandwich stuff, ice cream, potato chips, etc. He also shows up before every meal. He tries to talk me into eating more than I need or what I want to eat. A perfect example is today... I'm going to my boyfriend's parents' house for dinner. I don't know what his mom is cooking, but I do know that she always has dessert and she always expects you to eat some. I had planned out a fairly nutritious and low calorie day... except for lunch. My coworker Traci asked if I wanted to order in a Buffalo Chicken pizza from Papa John's. My mind and my wallet said no, but Ed said, "You haven't had pizza in a while... a Buffalo Chicken pizza sounds delicious. You should get some. If you only eat a couple of pieces you'll be okay." I fought with him for about an hour before I caved in and told him okay and ordered pizza with Traci... Then I told him that I was only eating two pieces... but he told me I needed one more and I caved again and ate three total. I stopped myself after that... When I went home for lunch, my boyfriend had some ice cream and I ate some of that because Ed told me I needed it... even though I didn't. I mostly struggle with Ed when I'm home alone, but sometimes he gets me when I'm in public and I feel like I need to eat with everyone else.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #2

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

You might think the rituals and behaviors of your daily life are "normal", but whose normal are they? They may look and feel normal to you, but upon reflection could they really be coming from Ed? Is he telling you to do them, is he giving you direction?

Also, what triggers your eating disorder and throws your behaviors into high gear? Is it emotional, physical, or social factors, or a combination of all three? Write down three scenarios where you find yourself turning to Ed for comfort and list the behaviors and rituals he instructs you to do.

My life seems pretty normal. My thoughts are overcome by food though. All day I'm thinking of what I can eat and when I can eat it. How much can I eat? Should I go get some ice cream? What about that bag of cereal on the refrigerator? Can I have a bowl of that? No, I should probably try to be good today. While these are completely normal thoughts going through my head 24/7, I don't believe their normal and I don't believe they are healthy. I do believe it is Ed "helping" me through my day.

A combination of a million different things throws my behaviors into high gear, I think... But in all honesty, boredom is probably the number one situation that makes me binge. The last serious binge I remember having, I ate probably 6-8 cups of cereal, two ice cream sandwiches, and a couple of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. That is an incredible amount of food and I did it because I was bored. I wasn't hungry. I was miserable afterwards. I refuse to purge. I have never been one to purge so I'm stuck with two days worth of food in my stomach until it digests. It's horrible.

My Three Scenarios:
  1. It's late at night and I'm home alone. I'm just relaxing on the couch watching television. I have already eaten dinner, but I want something sweet. "There's a whole bag of sugary sweet cereal in the kitchen. All you have to do is get up and go pour a bowl," Ed tells me. I try to stay strong and say no to Ed, but he eventually talks me into it. I grab one of our enormous cereal bowls and fill it to the rim with children's cereal... like Cap'n Crunch Berries or Lucky Charms or Cocoa Puffs or Apple Jacks... something like that... my bowls are huge and hold probably three to four cups of cereal. After I finish the cereal, Ed says, "Hey, you still have some milk in there... another half a bowl of cereal would use that milk so it won't go to waste." Sometimes I go pour another bowl and sometimes I don't, but Ed talks me into it... even when I don't need it.
  2. I've had a tough day at work. We had a lot of truck rentals and there was just a lot of stuff going on. I don't feel like doing anything... let alone cooking. Before I leave work for the day, I think of things I could eat for dinner. Ed says, "Did you hear? Dominos has half off any pizza right now. You could get a pizza for cheap." I tell Ed that I don't need to go get a pizza, I could go home and make something healthy. Ed says, "But you don't really want to clean the kitchen, cook, and then clean again... you want something easy, you know you do." I eventually cave in and order a large pizza and eat almost the whole thing by myself.
  3. It's a special occasion of some sort and I'm going out to eat at a restaurant with the rest of my family. No one else in my family really has to worry about their weight. Before we go, I google the restaurant and look up the nutrition facts and decide which meal would be the healthiest for me to eat. When I get there, my family is all excited to be eating in public. I guess I should mention that when I was in high school, the anorexic part of Ed wouldn't let me eat in public... So, eating out is special to me too as I used to not be able to do it at all... When I arrive the waitress comes to take my order. Then she asks if we're interested in appetizers. My mind says NO!, but Ed says, "Why don't you wait to see if anyone else is interested in an appetizer. It wouldn't hurt to share something." So, we decide on an appetizer and I imagine it's fattening and greasy like fried mozzarella or something... Then Ed says, "Well, Crystal, since you already blew your diet by eating the fried mozzarella, you might as well order what you really want off the menu... You know you don't want the tilapia with rice... you'd rather have the chicken covered in parmesan cheese and breading with the tortellini on the side." I end up giving into Ed and order the dish I like instead of the dish that keeps me on the diet track.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #1

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

Looking back, what are some of your earliest memories of disordered thoughts and/or behaviors related to food and your body? How did Ed grab your attention? What age were you? Was it a gradual progression?

My earliest memory of disordered thoughts is probably when I was about ten. I was on the swim team at our local YMCA. I remember thinking how thin all of the other girls looked in their swimsuits and how I was so chunky. I also couldn't do all of the exercises required during practices. We had to do warm ups and then get out of the water and do sit ups, scissors going different directions with your legs, etc... I also remember hoarding food. When my mom would bake cookies, I'd take a handful of them and hide them in my room. When I got old enough to buy food on my own, I'd buy fattening stuff that my mom wouldn't let me have and hide that somewhere. I still hide food to this day. I've been known to buy a package of cookies and put them in my car so that my boyfriend won't eat them... or hide refrigerated stuff in the bottom drawer of the fridge where food usually isn't put... or one time, I had a box that used to have hamburger patties in it up in the freezer that I hid some ice cream in so I could eat it on my own in secret... I don't remember having any disordered body thoughts before the swim team though. Ed didn't officially grab my attention until the summer between my eighth grade year and freshman year of high school... It was gradual in the fact that I was tired of being the fat one. I wanted boys to like me. I wanted my mom to get off my back about the fact that they only made stylish clothes to a size 14 at that time and I was bigger than that. Eventually Ed talked me into not eating at all. I dropped 75 pounds in about five months. Since then it's been a battle of yo-yo dieting. Starving myself. Then binge eating until I'm sick. Then starving myself some more. I'm proud to say that the anorexic part of my eating disorder is gone, but I'm a horrible binge eater these days and my weight and health prove it.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Making a Wager

My mom and I are very competitive people. If you weren't aware, I work with her... Yesterday at work she asked me if I wanted to put my money where my mouth is... almost literally. We came up with a competition... the participants are just my mom, a good friend, and me. There is HUGE trust going into this because everything banks on all of us being accurate and truthful in our postings. This is how it's going to work:

Each day, we all have to log our calories into MyFitnessPal... I will be keeping track of the net calories consumed by each of us each day in a little spreadsheet I made. If you didn't know, net calories are the calories you consume minus the calories you earn from workouts. The person with the fewest net calories each day wins $1 from each of the other competitors. If for some reason one of us shouldn't log our calories (let's say we're going on vacation or something and don't have the time) that person automatically loses for that day... We all are also aware of the fact that, medically speaking, we shouldn't eat less than 1200 calories each day. Just to put that out there. We're not going to starve ourselves to win this money...

Also, at the beginning and end of each month, we'll weigh in. The person who lost the biggest percentage of their body weight will also win $5 from each of the other competitors. The most we could lose in one month is $36... the most we could win in one month is $72. Pretty good deal there!!! :) We're starting all of this on Monday. I'm pretty excited.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Figuring it Out + One Step at a Time

Okay... So, after some talking to from several people at this blog and in a group I'm in on Facebook, I decided to take things one step at a time. I did some research and according to many of the sites I found, it is more important to get your eating in control before you start exercising if you want great results. A trainer posted online that losing weight is 80% diet and 20% exercise... I agree with this. Over a one month period, I was an exercising fool! I worked out four to five days a week at Curves doing a 30 minute workout each time... then at least three days a week, I was walking three miles afterward. I barely lost any weight doing this because I was still eating like a pig.

I'm going to use the rest of this entry to set guidelines for myself... I need to get with it and write in here more often so that I'm accountable for the things I do. I think I will also be adding a food log, exercise log, and sleep log to the end of every entry from now. Anyway...

My first task was to figure out how many calories I need to eat to lose weight each week. This is without exercise. First you need to find a basal metabolic rate (BMR) calculator to figure out how many calories you need per day. Then you use this number to determine the number of calories you should eat daily. You take that number and subtract the calorie deficit you need to lose the weight you want. For example, one pound is 3500 calories. If you wanted to lose one pound per week, you would need a deficit of 500 calories per day... one and a half pounds per week would be 750 calories per day... two pounds per week would be 1000 calories per day... etc... I created this chart for a reference to myself (it will need updated every so often as I lose weight):

225 pounds Lose 1 lb Lose 1.5 lb Lose 2 lb
Little to no exercise/desk job (2093) 1593 1343 1093
Light exercise or sports/1-3 days per week (2398) 1898 1648 1398
Moderate exercise or sports/3-5 days per week (2704) 2204 1954 1704
Strenuous exercise or sports/6-7 days per week (3009) 2509 3759 3509

Okay, the way this chart works (so I don't forget as well)... I used this site to calculate my BMR. It was easiest to use and was very similar (off by only a calorie or two) to a couple of other sites... The weight in the upper left is my current weight... that is followed by activity levels. Then depending on how active I am, my calorie goal is listed under the number of pounds to lose. As losing two pounds with little to no exercise, puts me under 1200 (the minimum daily recommended), I scratched it out because it's not healthy to go that low... According to my doctor, any time you have a calorie goal, you should give yourself a 100 calorie buffer on either side... so right now my calorie goal would be 1243-1443. Anyway, I will try to remember to update this with every five pounds lost... let's see if I remember!

Okay... Now onto nutrition. This is how good nutrition is comprised:

Grains: 6 to 11 servings per day
One serving of this group can be:
  • 1 slice of bread
  • 1/2 cup of rice, cooked cereal or pasta
  • 1 cup of ready-to-eat cereal
  • 1 flat tortilla
Vegetables: 3 to 5 servings per day
One serving of vegetables can be:
  • 1 cup of raw leafy vegetables
  • 1/2 cup of other vegetables, cooked or raw
  • 3/4 cup of vegetable juice
Fruits: 2 to 4 servings per day
One serving of fruit can be:
  • One medium apple, orange or banana
  • 1/2 cup of chopped, cooked or canned fruit
  • 3/4 cup of fruit juice
Dairy: 2 to 3 servings per day
  • Cottage cheese is lower in calcium that most other cheeses - one cup counts as only 1/2 serving of milk. Go easy on high-fat cheese and ice cream. Choose non-fat milk and yogurt and cheeses made from skim milk because they are lowest in fat.
Proteins: 2 to 3 servings per day
The following foods count as one ounce of meat:
  • One egg
  • 2 tablespoons of peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup cooked dry beans
  • 1/3 cup of nuts
Fats, oils, & sweets: Use Sparingly
  • These foods include salad dressings, oils, cream, butter, margarine, sugars, soft drinks, candies and sweet desserts. 
All of this being listed... Here are my goals:
  1. Stay within 100 calories to either side of my calorie goal depending on activity level.
  2. Drink at least 64 oz of water each day.
  3. Attempt to eat at least the minimum number of servings for each food group each day.
  4. Just say no!!! This means at work. We order in a lot and it's always unhealthy... or usually unhealthy. I guess I will say... every other week is okay as long as I can get something reasonably healthy.
  5. If I am good all week (staying within my daily goal range), I can have one cheat day. This day, I can eat 500 calories more than any usual day.
So, let's get this thing started, shall we???

Monday, June 11, 2012


I'm feeling really defeated right now. I've been struggling so much on the diet and exercise front lately that I just feel like I can't make it back... I know that's not a good mindset to have, but no one pushes me to be better and I think that would really help me out right now.

I really, really wanted to learn how to run. I know you will say, "Then learn how to run." The problem is, I can't run correctly. Apparently you're supposed to jog on the balls of your feet moreso than your heels. I cannot seem to do this. I've tried and every time I try, I end up jogging on my heels which makes everything bounce all over the place and makes my knees hurt. Give it time, you might say... I am so impatient that I don't want to give it time! I want to be able to run right now! I have dreams where I'm just running for the fun of it. I am so good in my dreams... I wish I could be that good in real life. *sigh*

My eating has been so off track. I'm trying to get it back on track today. So far, so good, I guess... I haven't eaten much and haven't eaten a wide variety of things either. My dinner should be pretty healthy, but instead of eating breakfast, I had a Starbucks Frappuccino. My lunch consisted of a spinach and cheese lean pocket and some goldfish crackers... then I had some s'mores goldfish crackers. That's all I've consumed today.

I also don't really want to go back to the gym. I get used to not going and then it takes everything in my power to get going again. I have to go get my blood pressure checked within the next week and I bet you I don't get taken off of it yet... considering I haven't been working out lately... at all. I have reasons excuses. They are:

Week of 05/13 --- I went to Curves and the gym on this Monday... the rest of the week, I was working on buying my car...

Week of 05/20 --- I went to Wisconsin this weekend. Since I was gone, I didn't go to the gym much because I had so much house work to catch up on... I think I maybe went Monday and Tuesday. *shrugs*

Week of 05/27 --- This was the week of Memorial Day. Curves was closed on Monday and I didn't leave my house. The rest of the week I had some kind of stomach bug. I went from like 227 to like 223 in a week from not eating. Good reason for not going to the gym...

Week of 06/03 --- Last week I just didn't want to go to the gym pretty much. I think I wrote an entry about how we had no food in the house which makes me not want to go mentally... In my mind I think why should I bother going to the gym if I don't have good food because all of the unhealthy food I'm going to eat is going to counteract all of the hard work I just put in... it's not worth it. I know this is a horrible attitude to have, but it's the attitude that I have.

I really and truly wished that someone lived near me that would motivate me to go to the gym. I don't have any gym buddies for Curves who can drag me there. None of my friends will join with me and without them I have a hard time making myself go... My gym buddy for the regular gym is more out of shape than I am and I'm the one who gets her to go. I actually went a lot without her when I was going regularly.

I guess I just want to complain... I just wish that weight loss was easier. I mean, it's so easy to put the weight on and damn near impossible to get it to come off. Since my highest, I'm still down six pounds which I guess is good.

I'm such a daisy downer... I'm going to go for today.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Struggles + Goals

I'm really struggling right now. I haven't been to the gym in about a month now. Well... two-three weeks. I can't seem to make myself go back. I know why... I just can't get my mind over it. We don't have any good food. I'm completely broke and can't go buy any. When there's no food in the house, my mind thinks Why should I go workout??? I don't have anything good to eat so it's just going to counteract all of the hard work I just put into it... I know that's not a good attitude to have and I'm trying to get over it but it's not working. The good news is, Matt gave me his debit card so I can go get groceries after work. I'm excited about that. I want to have healthy good food in the house!

I got some advice back on my last blog entry. Thanks for that... I ended up buying the same bra I had before. My old bra was a 42D. I measured myself and found out I needed a 42DD according to their measurements so that's what I got. The bras came in and I'm in love! There's a fourth hook (not just three) and the straps are wider. I guess that's what you get when you go up a cup size. I like the way they fit so hopefully they'll work for a while!

Goals for the next week:
1) Get groceries and buy healthy ones.
2) Go through closet and post clothes on BST group.
3) Finish Mom's website.
4) Eat healthy.
5) Go back to the gym Monday at the absolute latest!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Chesty... Advice?

I'm pretty chesty. When I was thinner, I was still chesty for my size. Last time I got measured at Victoria's Secret, I was told I was a D or DD. That was probably a good 20-30 pounds ago. I'm sure my chestular region has grown like the rest of me... Oh! I remember when I was a sophomore in high school (my thinnest), I had to get measured for my JROTC uniform and my chest measured 40 inches... and that's when I wore a size 10! Right now I'm at 48 inches (as of my last measurement from Curves)... My problem is this... sometimes DDs are too big and sometimes the Ds are too small, but I'm having a hard time finding a good fitting bra. According to my gynecologist, I have very fibrous breasts and take medication to help with this, but because of this, if I'm not wearing a good-fitting, well-supportive bra, my whole chest and back hurts. What brought this up is the fact that I'm not wearing a supportive bra right now and my chest and back are starting to hurt... My everyday bras are wearing out. Currently I'm wearing cotton Balconette bras from Lane Bryant... well, not this minute, but usually... Any other chesty ladies have a brand of bra that they wear??? I need something really supportive.