I’m in my third week of Weight Watchers now. There have definitely been changes in how I eat. And in how I think about food.
Bread? I eat the WW-approved kind, and white bread and rolls only on Sunday mornings. Yogurt? Almost down to zero, I eat low-fat quark because it has more protein and less points. And it tastes a lot better than low-fat yogurt (yuck!) The amount of veggies has increased. Now that it’s cold, I can’t bring myself to eat raw vegetables, they make me feel cold from the inside. But soups, broths and stews of vegetables are just the right thing. They look lovely, fill me up, warm me, and they taste good! When I eat veggies like that, I feel really good about it. It’s yummy, it’s colourful, I believe it is healthy for me because it’s alive and full of fibre and vitamins, and it has little calories and zero points!
I pay more attention to being full, and I choose food that keeps me full longer. When I’m full, I have less cravings. After two weeks of a kind of plateau, where my weight fluctuated around one kilo but didn’t really go down, I started going down on Sunday. I ate a little more and am back up 800 grams. But it will go down again. It tends to plateau before my special days.
Ok, so I am rather content and losing weight slowly. That’s good. But it has been like this for quite some time, before WW.
The downside of WW? I am becoming a little obsessed with food. I disregard what I WANT to eat and choose my food according to points, nutrients, etc. It may be normal for a lot of people, but to me it seems slightly unhealthy (psychologically). I can only truly enjoy food when it is healthy and/or still in my points or calorie budget. Before, when I was trying to eat what I wanted, I took more pleasure in eating. Yet I had never managed to free myself from those ideas. Now they are back, and I find myself judging food and people who eat it, categorising them. That’s definitely bad.
And last Saturday, I had my first real binge in ages. Months, if not years. Well, to a bulimic it might not be a binge. But it felt like one, I felt out of control. I’d been at this conference in another town, and that was the second day. I was tired, and slightly stressed from being around so many people for so long. Lunch had been dreary, and I had eaten too little protein. Then my coworkers all had dessert, tiramisu, chocolate mousse, all things I adore. I guess I could have had a small dessert, but WW was a welcome excuse to abstain. Because looking like I do, eating a creamy dessert among lots of people is impossible for me. On other such occasions I had bought myself dessert on my way home and eaten it alone. This time, I intended to eat one of the famous little cakes on the way home. The chocolate mousse looked SO good, though. My coworker/boss smacked her lips and hmmmed, completely insensitive to my situation. She can be like that. It made me REALLY mad.
Then, on my way home, I stopped at the bakery to buy some more cakes, to bring home. I also bought a whole grain roll for the way home. Then, at the train station, I got some tea ‘to go’. Everything was fine. Then I walked by a pretzel stand, and when I smelled the fresh bread, I couldn’t resist. I got a small pretzel. I found my train, a slow one that would take ninety minutes. There I sat, in a compartment alone. Nobody could see me, I was right by the door facing the wall. I was tired and hungry and the bread smelled so good. I ate the pretzel. Then I also ate the roll, planning to stop afterwards. But then I really wanted a cake. So, I allowed myself a cake. It was so good, and while I knew it was enough and I was actually full and would notice it in a few minutes, I couldn’t stop. I knew the cakes would cost points, and I knew they didn’t give my body what it wants to become thin and strong, and I knew I would feel bad afterwards, but I had no control. I ate two more cakes before I felt full. Then it was over, and regret came.
I felt really bad. For a moment, I was angry with myself, even hated myself. But that was even worse. I didn’t want to hate myself. I took out my iPod and listened to music, and the feeling turned to regret and dejection, milder feelings. I forgave myself, seeing how all the events that led up to the binge had contributed to it. I had tried too hard, restricted too much. I hadn’t been good enough to myself. This was a lesson. I had learned it.
The fullness remained for some hours, and the melancholy mood as well. But while I was sad, it was a nice sadness. An I-am-very-close-to-myself sadness, where I didn’t care what others were thinking about me anymore. Almost peaceful. I went home without opening my umbrella. I felt very calm and sort of slow-motion-y. It was snowing.