Oct 10, 2018

What I Learned While Losing Weight

by Aspen, Herbal Authoress

In 2012, I decided I needed to lose some weight, and decided I needed to have a strict no-sugar rule. I started October 1st and held myself to a high standard for a full 30 days until Halloween. It was incredibly difficult, but I did it. When I finally allowed myself a treat after weeks of dreaming about it, it didn’t even taste that good. Plus, I had lost 10 full pounds! I couldn’t believe it and decided to keep going. After another month of no sugar, it felt routine enough that I could put my will-power elsewhere and removed bread and pasta and other high-carb foods from my diet. Over the next six months, I continued to watch my clothes get looser and my self-confidence rise. Here is what I learned then, and a bit of what I have learned in the past six months as I have made a valiant effort to once again take control of my life through food:

  1. Eating healthy is a psychological game: I found when I began to stop thinking of myself as someone who was “on a diet” or “taking a break” from foods that were unhealthy, and instead started thinking of it as “I am just the type of person who eats this way” I ingrained healthy behavior into my sense of self, which made the decision for me.
  2. I am a sucker for peer pressure: The reason I fell off the bandwagon after being on such a good path for so long was that I caved to the constant invitations from my (future) in-laws, who were constantly trying to feed me sugar. When I finally had a little ice cream with them (which I did NOT enjoy), I had lost my excuse for future “no’s.” Just recently I have realized that more than half of my battle for the past six years has been going along with the poor food choices my spouse desired out of fear of rocking the boat.
  3. It gets harder as you get older: I was 30 the first time I went off sugar. I was single, I had full control over my kitchen, and I had lots of time. Now I am 36, I have a baby, and for years I had to accommodate other food habits. I have so many more responsibilities vying for my time that I have to sometimes choose between meal prep and sleep, or meal prep and the gym - or meal prep and a freakin’ shower! If I had stuck with those good habits six years ago, I would be in much better shape for this phase of life instead of trying to undo the past five years.
  4. It is about creating a healthy lifestyle, not about going on a diet: Back then it was easy for me to change the way I viewed myself and the way I chose to live my life. This time it is a little harder, but the concept is the same. I am working to see myself in a certain way, as a person who makes healthy choices and who uses food as a tool for health and nourishment rather than a way to cope with stress. If you try to diet, you are thinking in temporary terms. You have already put a limit on yourself.

 Food and health could not be more closely related. You will see in the 2019 Almanac some of the things we at RidgeCrest are doing to establish good health for ourselves. When it comes down to it, though, healthful and mindful eating is one of the best things we can do emotionally, psychologically, and physically for ourselves.

For a great video on how to overcome the psychology of binge eating, check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnAlwMfB2S0