My stomach is full with the delicious lunch I had with girls at work. We went to a local Mexican restaurant and I ordered steak fajitas. I ate all 3 of the tortillas stuffed with steak, onions, lettuce and refried beans. They were not whole wheat tortillas, but fluffy white carb-o-licious ones. It wasn’t the most unhealthy meal, and I didn’t eat everything, I did box up some leftovers. But I did eat more than I should have.
I got to thinking, and reading, when I got back from lunch, about my eating habits. I binge. I don’t eat a whole lot during the day at work, and then I stuff my face when I get home. On the weekends if I find myself home alone I will binge. When I went away for a few days and stayed in a hotel with room service… I practically made myself sick over-eating.
The little bit of research I did just this past half hour has resulted in a few techniques and suggestions that seem to exist on multiple blogs, forums and threads about combating binge eating. I think I am going to take those into consideration and work on them in the coming weeks.
MEAL PLANNING & PREP
This is a big one. One of the reasons for binging, as well as for eating unhealthy foods, is because I don’t have healthy foods readily available. When I get a sudden desire to eat, if there isn’t something healthy at my fingertips I’m going to stop someplace and get greasy convenience store pizza, or just pick at a whole bunch of unhealthy things, or hit up the vending machine.
So once my Nutrisystem is done (starting January 1st) I’ll be creating weekly menus for myself and prepping my meals on the weekend. The hard part will be forcing myself to prep meals, but if I’m still in the midst of my no-TV challenge then I should have less trouble making myself do things because I’ll be bloody bored!
With my meals planned out, and all packed up and ready to grab each morning for work, and readily available on the weekends, I hope to stop myself from making those trips to the vending machine, stops on fast food places, or binging on whatever junk I can dig out of the fridge/pantry.
FOCUS ON HEALTH, NOT WEIGHT
This will be a difficult one for me. I weigh myself every day, and seeing the scale go down even a few grams gives me ambition to keep it up. But I think that many of the articles I’ve read are right…when my weight goes up I feel guilty, and guilt for me leads to binging. Likewise if I binge but still lose weight it gives me this feeling like I can eat whatever I want.
I don’t think I will stop myself from weighing myself at all, but I think instead I may weigh myself once a week. Probably on some unassuming day like Thursday that I have nothing to really look forward to aside from that. I am actively trying to lose weight, but being healthy is the main goal. I will weigh myself and take my blood pressure once a week.
LEARN TRIGGERS & REMOVE TEMPTATION
I have binge triggers, I sure do. A big one is watching TV. I like to have something to do with my hands, and I can’t, for some reason, sculpt or draw while I watch TV, so instead my hands find food to munch. Another trigger is boredom. I even get it at work. I get wrestles and I hit the vending machine. The last major one is being alone. This can be home alone, or driving home from work or to work, alone. I answer to no one, and there is no one there to see me pull into the the Chevron for a sausage biscuit and a hot cocoa.
To nip these in the bud I am going to take a few steps to remove the temptations of those events. I’m in a no-TV challenge, and hopefully when that challenge ends I wont be binge-watching TV shows anymore. But there will still be shows I sit down to watch, and with that will come the cravings.
I think one method that may work really well, is to make almost a ritual of it. When I get ready to watch an episode (get that, ONE episode) of a show, I will start by preparing a healthy snack. Celery with some peanut butter, or some grapes, or apple slices with cinnamon, then get wrapped up in a cozy blanket or warm in my bed, and watch my show with my little healthy snack. I’ll still get the enjoyment I crave, but it will be a small healthy snack and just one show, not six hours of non-stop TV that requires six hours of non-stop snacking.
LOOK FOR THINGS TO REPLACE EATING WITH
Eating gives a small amount of happiness, but it only lasts as long as you’re eating and then it’s gone. If I can find other things that give me joy and happiness that I can do instead of eating, that would go a long way to cutting away the feeling of need when it comes to binging.
I’m not sure what these things could be. Any suggestions? One article suggests things like hobbies, finding a hobby to fill your time with. I already have a lot of hobbies. Reading, writing, sculpting, drawing. If those aren’t enough to fill my time with happy non-food related thoughts I don’t know what else to try!
I’m going to work towards making a conscious effort to not snack, binge or eat unhealthy foods. I’m going to give all these suggestions a try, and work to prepare myself for what I’ll eat each day in advance, hopefully making it easier to stick to healthy habits!