View Full Version : Juggling with focus re/weight


amberwillow
09-25-12, 08:14 PM
I needed to get my thoughts down... I can clarify as the thread progresses.

I am a tall person, but by any scale I'm well over my healthy weight. Eleven years ago I was depressed, obese and unfit.
I turned my life around from that point, lost 40kgs, got fit and threw of the depression with a combo of meds and extreme self-care.

I kept that weight off for 8 yrs.

Since I was diagnosed my weight has crept up on the scales slowly until it is now at a point where I enter not just self image issues, but also pain.

I clearly know how to lose weight and get fit. The problem I seem to be running up against is my brain juggling focus on different things...
It seems as if I can only make rational plans at certain times of the day or in certain locations...

I need to tip the balance back for my health... Please, please, I need some support in this. It's Spring here, traditionally the time I have most energy...
A good time for a tweak.

amberwillow
09-25-12, 09:17 PM
Just so you know - this isn't a sucky negative topic... I seriously plan to be fierce again.

I have realistic goals.
Enjoy exercise (once I activate)
Love healthy food (once it's in my fridge/lunch)

I want to rock my life again!

silivrentoliel
09-25-12, 10:54 PM
it's a shame you live on the other side of the globe. I could use someone like you around to help motivate me :D

good luck!

amberwillow
09-25-12, 11:39 PM
I've co-coached with others over Messenger successfully in the past.
It can work.

good luck!
Thanks for that dragon girl :)

Kasi
09-26-12, 02:06 AM
I actually have no trust in the BMI scale at all so my opinion may be warped by that. By that scale, I'm obese which I'm very far from, since a lot of that weight happens to be muscle and bone.
For me to get started, I would use my lazy against myself and just put a big bowl of either grapes or yogurt by where I was working. It ended up curbing a lot of my cravings or impulse eats. I utterly hate water, hate it, hate it, hate it. However, I know it's good for me, so I'd put a bit of green tea in it, which tastes good to me, warm or cold. Or a touch of lemon, which I learned from my aunt.
Also used my impulses for me. If you have a car, keep a set of running shoes and workout clothes in it. I was at school at the time, so I started wearing running shoes, and keeping a pair of yoga pants in my backpack. It was pretty easy to switch out jeans and hit the treadmill or the weights when struck by the mood. (I also tend to wear tank tops, which is why I never bothered with a workout top.)
If you're in an area with some really good sights or activities. Pick a day and drag a friend out (if you want to) to go see/do it. I would go to the pier with my sister and you don't even realize until the next day how much walking you did. Or rock climbing is pretty fun, I went with a couple friends and we had a blast teasing everyone for getting stuck or having friendly competitions on the same wall. Stuff like that.
Also, I used to just pace while reading, got in some exercise and it tends to be mindless so you don't even notice enough to grumble about going out of your way to exercise.
The problem for me was always getting started and staying that way for two or three weeks. It tended to take care of itself after that.
Good Luck!

amberwillow
09-26-12, 05:39 AM
I'm aiming for the comfortable curvy weight I held steady at for several years that had me fit, energetic and pretty much pain free... Only good 'karate/workout' pain allowed.

For me to get started, I would use my lazy against myself and just put a big bowl of either grapes or yogurt by where I was working. It ended up curbing a lot of my cravings or impulse eats.
I work as a Nanny, so I'm going to have to start packing my lunches/snacks and making sure I eat fruit when the kids (3 & 1yrs) have theirs.
I have the routine together for getting dressed and out the door on time but it doesn't include lunch/snacks yet.

Also used my impulses for me. If you have a car, keep a set of running shoes and workout clothes in it.
I don't have a car... I commute to work on the train, but still I think you have something there. Maybe we can work on ideas for this?
I've been thinking of getting a backpack for my stuff... I need a new work bag anyway.

SquarePeg
09-26-12, 06:51 AM
Can I just ask why you think you are overweight. Is it because you don´t have time to shop and prepare healthy stuff, are you addicted to sugary stuff and carbs, do you eat healthily but big portions, do you binge, are you obsessed with what foods you are not allowed, are you always hungry, do you eat when you are bored, upset, angry, happy etc?

It´s just that I had issues in the past but am 100% over them so maybe I could help if I knew more. You can PM me if you want.

amberwillow
09-26-12, 07:20 AM
Can I just ask why you think you are overweight. Is it because you don´t have time to shop and prepare healthy stuff, are you addicted to sugary stuff and carbs, do you eat healthily but big portions, do you binge, are you obsessed with what foods you are not allowed, are you always hungry, do you eat when you are bored, upset, angry, happy etc?

Part of it is that I haven't been prioritizing my eating. Dh has been cooking and I didn't want to rock the boat.

Part of it is that I make poor food choices when I'm busy/tired.

Another factor is that I was using the gym and training at karate several times a week... I injured my knee (not at training) and started working nearly full time hours, so my high intensity training vanished. I still walk a lot, but it's hardly the same.

I do lean on sweet food when I'm tired... I used to have an eating disorder. Binging but not purging. I consume too many non-nutritive calories atm but not really binges.

SquarePeg
09-26-12, 07:32 AM
<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <o:OfficeDocumentSettings> <o:AllowPNG/> </o:OfficeDocumentSettings> </xml><![endif]--> Do you think it´s the start of your disorder again?



I am convinced through my therapy and experience that emotional hunger feels the same as physical hunger and many women especially overeat but their hunger is never really satisfied, so they are constantly snacking, mainly because it´s an emotional unfulfilled need which the body is trying to fill with food.


Putting on weight and not being able to lose it can lead to poor self esteem, and , in turn, putting on even more weight.
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My useless brain came to this conclusion all by itself (though it took me years to work out) and I have just found an article about it.

I know you have an awful lot of stress going on at the moment.

http://helpguide.org/life/emotional_eating_stress_cravings.htm

amberwillow
09-26-12, 07:54 AM
Well, we'll see how I went...

Are you an emotional eater? -Somewhat
Do you eat more when you’re feeling stressed? -I eat sweeter food, so generally more 'empty' calories.
Do you eat when you’re not hungry or when you’re full? -No
Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe yourself when you’re sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)? -sad, tired or lonely maybe.
Do you reward yourself with food? - no, I trained myself out of that.
Do you regularly eat until you’ve stuffed yourself? - not any more.
Does food make you feel safe? Do you feel like food is a friend? - food is nutrition, food is not safety.
Do you feel powerless or out of control around food? - out of control when I'm tired... When I don't have a plan/strategy.

... What do you think?

SquarePeg
09-26-12, 08:13 AM
well from those answers it doesn´t sound like it is an emotional problem, so in that case it´s down to good old meal planning and organisation (hate those words).

In my case it´s usually that I haven´t been paying any attention to what I have been eating at all, so I´m really unaware of what I actually eat in a day.

Maybe you just need to be a bit more conscious of what you are eating.

You need to plan and make your list when you have a clear head. You sound like you have a good idea regarding nutrition and what you should be eating.

Your DH is cooking, can he cook requests?? can you give him menus? Always have low fat snacks to hand. Have you tried a pair of sketchers or similar (no idea if they are just a gimmick but I like the idea)?

I put on a little weight recently so stopped wearing any stretchy stuff and put on the tight stuff with the buttons popping which put the brakes on. I then gave up only bread and wheat (not ultra strict) for a month which I soon got used to.

I´m 47 and have found that it takes me at least 4 weeks to start losing weight so you need to persevere and not lose heart.

stef
09-26-12, 08:30 AM
thanks for the "4 weeks" remark; I used to be able to lose a couple of extra pounds quickly but it seems to take forever now!
(I don't really have any problem with weight, diet, binging etc - it's just that I like good food a lot!)

Fuzzy12
09-26-12, 08:35 AM
A few things that help me:

1. Ground flax seeds!! I've realised that it's imposssible to eat healthy when I'm constantly hungry. Sometimes I sprinkle some ground flax seeds on my breakfast cereal (2-3 table spoons). It's full of omega 3 and fibre. So it keeps me full for most of the day but more importantly I also don't feel tired (which is my biggest problem when I'm dieting.)

2. Find a work-out you enjoy and that is simple. I hate going to the gym and have never managed to stick to a regular exercise plan for more than a few weeks. I only stick to things that I enjoy and that are easily available. I haven't found anything that's perfect yet though. There are lots of things I enjoy but they usually are too time consuming and need too much preparation.

3. Don't overdo it. This is my biggest problem when it comes to working out. When I do make it to the gym, I work on high intensity till I feel nauseated and am nearly fainting. Because it's so unpleasant, I hesitate going again. If I tell myself strictly that I'm not allowed to work out for longer than 45-60mins and only every second day I'm much more likely to stick to it.

4. Don't starve yourself and don't overdo dieting either. I have an eating disorder so this is a huge problem for me. I've realised that starving myself only sets me up for binges and it kills my energy, which makes my will power even worse.

Honestly, I'd swear by flax seeds. It's worked miracles for me.

amberwillow
09-27-12, 12:44 AM
1. Ground flax seeds!! I've realised that it's imposssible to eat healthy when I'm constantly hungry. Sometimes I sprinkle some ground flax seeds on my breakfast cereal (2-3 table spoons). It's full of omega 3 and fibre. So it keeps me full for most of the day but more importantly I also don't feel tired (which is my biggest problem when I'm dieting.)
Thanks for reminding me, I used to grind flaxseed too. It does help.

As far as workouts go I already walk every day (since I haven't got a car). I can do Zumba at my gym or yoga, as well as general cardio etc...
I can get my bike serviced also... Plenty of places to ride.

I will try to ease into stepping up my workouts, I have no desire to be injured.

I don't do diets... I just concentrate on eating healthy food, maximizing my nutrition as seasonally as possible. I find that I actually have to eat more to lose weight.

Weird but true.

spunkysmum
09-27-12, 12:56 AM
I have lost close to 15 pounds in two weeks. But I am honestly not sure how I did it. There are a number of things I have been doing differently, all at once, in that time period so I don't know which to pin it on. I do know that I didn't have time to exercise or diet during that time so that isn't it.

SquarePeg
09-27-12, 01:49 AM
Fuzzy are you getting help for your disorder? I have been reading that bulimia and eating disorders often occur in adults with ADHD that haven´t been diagnosed. Even after treatment for adhd the disorder can continue.

amberwillow
09-27-12, 02:17 AM
I think that after we build up a habit of thinking, a behavior and thought pattern it's hard to break it apart even after we have been diagnosed and start treatment.
My eating disorder started around 16 and continued for about 12 years before I challenged my coping mechanisms to change.

It's easy to revert to habits that are so well worn in our lives. I did it alone (the hardest method)... It took 2yrs before I was confident that my thinking was healthy and I still have that worry at the back of my mind, that I might get sucked back into the cycle.

Retromancer
09-27-12, 02:29 AM
I hate it when a nurse hands me a sheet of paper telling me how to eat healthily. Don't you think if I could shop and prepare food healthily I would?
Shopping and preparing food, period is the problem.

Fuzzy12
09-27-12, 02:50 AM
Fuzzy are you getting help for your disorder? I have been reading that bulimia and eating disorders often occur in adults with ADHD that haven´t been diagnosed. Even after treatment for adhd the disorder can continue.

no not really. Losing weight definitely gives me an instant kick. It's just another source of stimulation. :(

amberwillow
09-27-12, 06:19 AM
Okay, today illustrated that I need to educate my co-workers about my goal to lose this extra weight!

The cleaner turned up at work today with 'a little treat to share'... It was some sort of sponge soaked in syrup, peaches and whipped cream. She is a lovely, lovely person... How do I phrase this?

Fuzzy12
09-28-12, 11:21 AM
Could you say something like "that looks delicious but I'm trying to cut down on sweets?"

amberwillow
09-28-12, 11:59 PM
Could you say something like "that looks delicious but I'm trying to cut down on sweets?"

I guess it's too late for the first part when the cake has already been consumed ;)
But the second part... Maybe with some examples of treats we could share... Blueberries, etc...

rickymooston
09-30-12, 12:55 PM
Since I was diagnosed my weight has crept up on the scales slowly until it is now at a point where I enter not just self image issues, but also pain.


What changed with diagnosis in terms of your routine?

I'm asking this because, before you were diagnosed, you still had ADHD and all the focus issues in theory should have been there. Now, personally, i have
had a problem dealing with multiple facets of my life; e.g, focusing on work and on the state of my house.

In terms of losing weight, if you understand the root cause of what made you alter the routine that worked successfully for 8 years, likely you will win and conquer the problem.

Weight loss isn't easy. Lots of people offer "quick fixes". I doubt those work. :grouphug:

amberwillow
02-27-13, 05:54 AM
What changed with diagnosis in terms of your routine?

I'm asking this because, before you were diagnosed, you still had ADHD and all the focus issues in theory should have been there. Now, personally, i have
had a problem dealing with multiple facets of my life; e.g, focusing on work and on the state of my house.


After dx I actually took on more work. My full focus shifted off my health and my free time shrank.

My husband and other two children were also diagnosed at that point, so I had plenty to deal with (the other child was already dx).

starry
02-27-13, 06:52 AM
Well, we'll see how I went...

Are you an emotional eater? -Somewhat
Do you eat more when you’re feeling stressed? -I eat sweeter food, so generally more 'empty' calories.
Do you eat when you’re not hungry or when you’re full? -No
Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe yourself when you’re sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)? -sad, tired or lonely maybe.
Do you reward yourself with food? - no, I trained myself out of that.
Do you regularly eat until you’ve stuffed yourself? - not any more.
Does food make you feel safe? Do you feel like food is a friend? - food is nutrition, food is not safety.
Do you feel powerless or out of control around food? - out of control when I'm tired... When I don't have a plan/strategy.

... What do you think?


You're doing just fine and are able to control your eating- which is a huge plus.
That's why I wrote "your eating", instead of "your eating disorder".
I don't think you have an eating disorder. Your issue is probably a slow metabolism and not paying enough attention to calories.

It's a lot of work to put in the time and effort to eat healthy, count calories and exercise, especially if you're working a lot, come home tired and just can't be bothered dealing with planning what to eat, prepare it etc.

But it can be done of course, with effort and time put into it daily.

Here are my answers to the questions (I answered them as how I am, when I'm not medicated):


Are you an emotional eater? -YES
Do you eat more when you’re feeling stressed? - YES
Do you eat when you’re not hungry or when you’re full? - YES
Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe yourself when you’re sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)? - YES
Do you reward yourself with food? - YES
Do you regularly eat until you’ve stuffed yourself? - YES
Does food make you feel safe? Do you feel like food is a friend? - YES
Do you feel powerless or out of control around food? - YES (except when on medication)

As you can see, I have an eating disorder.
There's no treatment for it other than controlling my ADD, since it is what's behind it.
I have lost weight with dieting and exercise for a while, until I'd start binging again and the pounds would come back. Then I'd start dieting and exercising again and lose it, and soon I'll binge again for a while.....until I had had enough of the yo-yo weight issues and started purging. From then on it was just binging and purging. For years.
Saw many docs, been on many anti-depressants, since they all thought I "was eating my feelings" and was depressed.
Probably that too, but anti-depressants didn't help, except made me not care about my problem that was out of control and accept it.

Only after being diagnosed with ADD finally by a doctor who understood why I was doing what I was doing and starting treatment, I was able to finally stop and be in control of what I eat, when I eat, how much I eat.

Diet, eating healthy, calorie counting, exercise do work and it's the way to do it. It's staying on top of it at all times is what's difficult.
Normal people who don't have ADD can lose weight and stay healthy that way. All they have to do is put in the effort.
I think that people with ADD might have more issues with it, if they also have an existing eating disorder. Like I did/do.

I'm not sure if my eating disorder was caused by my ADHD, but I know they are closely related.
I eat to switch off/get away from the gazillion thoughts that constantly flood my mind that never stop just long enough so I can make use of them, organize and prioritize them. Food numbs me, calms me down, stops the racing thoughts for a while.

amberwillow
07-01-13, 06:37 AM
Well, we'll see how I went...

Are you an emotional eater? -Somewhat
Do you eat more when you’re feeling stressed? -I eat sweeter food, so generally more 'empty' calories.
Do you eat when you’re not hungry or when you’re full? -No
Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe yourself when you’re sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)? -sad, tired or lonely maybe.
Do you reward yourself with food? - no, I trained myself out of that.
Do you regularly eat until you’ve stuffed yourself? - not any more.
Does food make you feel safe? Do you feel like food is a friend? - food is nutrition, food is not safety.
Do you feel powerless or out of control around food? - out of control when I'm tired... When I don't have a plan/strategy.

Okay, so nearly a year onwards and here I am again, only this time the answers to the questions above are very different.

I believe I'm facing my compulsive over-eating disorder this time. Not just a wobble on the compass.

I think I've been using lower levels strategies to address a much bigger problem... I need to step up with stronger strategies.

My step was admitting it to myself and to my husband... We had that conversation last night.

Now I need to design a more effective holistic plan...

tudorose
07-01-13, 07:01 AM
I think I was dealing with something similar for the last decade.

The only reason things are changing for me is because I've worked out that certain foods cause pain. I'm starting to make that switch in my mind that when I see a food I shouldn't eat I see pain instead. It's been the only thing to make me accountable for what I eat.

There have been two morning teas at work and I haven't eaten anything. The EOFY one was the hardest but I knew it would end badly if I ate anything so I sorta sulked in the corner for that one.

But I am getting used to it. The in-laws came over on the weekend and we'd bought a packet of tim tams which I watched everyone else eat and didn't feel tempted.

But to be honest if I didn't have the pain I wouldn't be doing this. Before I was full of excuses and always bargaining with myself about how I would be better tomorrow or that one wouldn't hurt or some other nonsense.

For me the hardest thing is having to cut out things from the fruit and veg groups - that's when I feel hard done by.

But it is interesting watching people with the leftover food after morning teas. They always put it near my desk and I watch people coming to the food all day bargaining with themselves. I hear stuff like, "Hmmm I really shouldn't eat this, I know I'll have this and then I won't have lunch." Then they come back again and it's "I really shouldn't have any more but oh well I'll just have to go for a walk at night and I won't have my afternoon coffee." Then they come back again, "I think I'll just have one more. I'll have to have a smaller dinner." Then late in the afternoon they'll be like "Oh well I've stuffed everything up anyway today so it doesn't matter. I'll start again tomorrow."

It's funny but it's also sad coz that used to me be. In some ways a lack of choice in the matter helps.