an experiment

I’ve been undertaking a wee experiment in very low calorie diets for the last couple of days. It was sparked by something my doctor said to me last week when we’d gotten talking about weight loss during my scheduled biennial indignity (*pap smear).

I’ve never been a fad dieter, never jumped on all the different diets-of-the-day bandwagons, never even south beached, atkinsed or cabbage souped. And I don’t intend to change that.

These days my eating is based on good healthy nutritious foods. It features well rounded portions from each of the major food groups, low fat, low sugar, high fibre, low GI, lots of water, plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables and nothing extreme. My old dietician back in Perth gave me the best balanced advice I’ve ever received. Unlike my old personal trainer (a fantastic lady I miss very much) my dietician didn’t prohibit carbs, scoff at my honey on toast breakfast or my daily cappuccinos (in fact she was happy I was getting a good source of calcium that way). She loved her food and she cared not just for my weight loss but for my all round current and future health.

So this is just an experiment - nothing more - a strict regime for a few days only. I’d intended to do it for the whole of this working week but today is Day 2 and I’m not sure if I’m likely to bother with Day 3, we’ll see. In the long term I have no intention of abandoning my healthy eating lifestyle changes in favour of extreme dieting. I know that would be neither healthy nor advantageous. I wanted the boost but most of all I wanted to see if I could do it.

It has surfaced some rather interesting learnings.

Absolute Deprivation Panic.

I only intended to do this for a few days but I spent far longer than that considering very seriously whether to or not. There was a time in the past when I had bowel issues and bought a recommended detox plan. Despite all the health benefits, which would have left me a darn site more comfortable, it sat on the shelf and was never opened. Even after all my years of dieting, I couldn't get my head around giving up coffee for 5 days. Plus I was so worried that the deprivation of foods I love would trigger a binge.

Now that I'm in a good place again I wanted to know if I could do it (not the detox, that unopened box was lost in the interstate move). My biggest concern, then and now, was about the food I’d be missing out on. I thought of the Skinny Cow English Toffee ice creams we bought at the weekend and how my hubby would get to eat them and I wouldn’t. It didn’t even occur to me there might still be one left by the time I allow myself to eat them again, or logic be-damned, that there’s absolutely no reason why we can’t just buy more next week. No. All I could focus on was the fact I’d be missing out. OHMYGOD-EVERYBODY-PANIC!!! The food might run out while I’m not looking!!!


Yesterday morning I had my regular skinny cap but didn’t have my usual second coffee in the afternoon - and you know what - I survived.

Last night hubby had an ice cream, I didn’t - and you know what - the world’s still turning.

The food will still be there and I don’t have to eat it all at once.

I say that losing weight and getting healthy is my highest priority, but how much am I willing to sacrifice for it? I’m putting in the extra time and effort at the gym and I’m watching my food intake, but I’m not *really* putting myself out. I’m in this for the long haul so it’s always been my intention to be reasonably relaxed about it. As a rule, no food is completely off limits – of course if I’m feeling a little fragile and know it’s a potential binge trigger then it’s probably still best I leave it alone.

I'm not saying I need to change those principals or do it tough, but these last couple of days have taught me that I've got more to give. If this is my top priority I need to treat it as such. That means making time for exercise however I'm feeling, pushing myself to work harder when I do, and most of all remembering the bigger picture over the immediate desire for gratification.

I'd typed this during my lunch hour but didn't finish it when work got back in the way (how rude!). I haven't forgotten it's weigh-in day... I'll be back in a bit when I've done the deed to report my numbers.


Jim said...

Interesting. I'm looking forward to updates on this experiment. Best wishes!

Anonymous said...

Hey there :)

You have a really sensible head on your shoulders, and it's so inspiring hearing your thoughts. I think it's really admirable that you're always trying to push yourself just that little bit harder, but you're aware of your limitations at the same time.

I experience the food panic a lot, too. It's so illogical, and yet, like you, I can't help feeling it! I'm certainly not one of those people who could keep a whole block of choccie in the cupboard and pick at it a few pieces at a time. I'm always filled with a sense of panic, thinking 'If I don't eat it RIGHT THIS SECOND it might be gone!' We curvy girls are a weird lot, hey? :)

Anyway, hope you're having a great week! Good luck for weighin :)


Cammy said...

Very Interesting what you've learned from the experience!

ani pesto said...

Day 4 and I'm still there. I'll try to write again with more ponderings on the subject.

@Miss M - we are indeed weird, I know this particular curvy girl is totally fruit loops at times