Sunday, February 17, 2013

Starve the Craving

As many of you know, I have lost a whole lot of weight since June of 2012.  You would think I would have said since January 2012 since that is when I had T.J.  However, I lost the majority of the "baby weight" right off the bat save 3-5 lbs.  I consider that losing it all especially since I wasn't really doing super well with my weight when I got pregnant, so it isn't like those few pounds were ever too far off anyway.

Anywho, I decided in June that I was done.  Done.  I was done fighting my weight, done looking in the mirror and hating what I saw, done waiting to shop for clothes because I "was going to lose weight first", done wasting my youth being unhappy and unhealthy.  Now, don't get me wrong, I was never obscenely large (save for at the end of my pregnancy- you would feel a slight vibration when I walked into the room during my final trimester), but I certainly wasn't content with the way I looked.

It was time to buckle down.  It was time to realize that the taste of something was never worth what it did to my body.  Over the next 6 months I shed off 21 lbs and was 16 lbs lower than my original starting weight-in when I became pregnant.  How?

-Portion control
-Regular, but not "intense" exercise
-Eating better foods
-The Lord.  Actually, He should come first... couldn't have done it without strength- all strength comes from Him... you get the picture.

No "diet" plan.  I am done dieting.  I am choosing a different "lifestyle".  I have been dieting since I was probably 10 or 11 years old.  Yes.  10 or 11.  For some of you, that may seem heart-breaking; for others, you are right there with me.  Sometimes your genes don't help your jeans- ba dum CHA!  But honestly, unless you have an actual condition labeled by a physician, suck it up, stop blaming the genes, and get your booty into gear!  Where there is a will, there is a way.  I am no longer sitting around complaining about how unfair it is that some people can eat all the garbage they want, not exercise, and still fit into a size 00.

Okay, well, I lied.  I still can complain about that... but it isn't going to make me fit into a smaller size or feel more comfortable in my skin.  Thus, I can complain while I pass up that cupcake or bag of chips.  I can complain while I am out for a walk with T.J. when I really just wanted to bum out all day.  There is no secret formula or magic pill.

Don't get me wrong.  For some people, a diet plan works.  Oh my goodness, I cannot tell you how many wonderful things I have heard about Weight Watchers!  SO many people have found amazing results with that program (Including my friend, Alyssa, who looks fantastic!!!).  I would definitely encourage anyone who is ready for some serious weight loss and NOW to plug into that program!  However, there were a few reasons it just wasn't for me:

1. Cost- Once again, where there is a will, there is a way.  There were probably sacrifices I could have made or scholarships I could have applied for, but it really wasn't super worth it to me (especially until I gave it a decent effort myself).

2. "Fake"- I tell a lot of people, "I don't do 'fake'."  I really try to stay away from sugar substitutes, diet drinks, diet foods, etc., because they are "chemical-y", and if you know me at all, you know I have kind of turned a little on the "crunchy" side within the past few years.  I try to stay away from chemicals, over-medicating, high fructose corn syrup, MSG, trans-fats, and partially hydrogenated oils.  I just truly believe the stuff is bad for your body.  I believe God made the world a certain way and that those natural things work better with our bodies.  Totally my opinion.  You want to eat/drink that stuff, go for it.  I will probably die before ya anyway!  Anywho, my aversion to "fake" makes diet plans difficult.

3. Failfulness- I don't diet well.  When I "diet", it turns into, "Man, I cannot wait until this stupid thing is over so I can stuff my face with stuff I have been missing!"  I know that Weight Watchers is AWESOME with this kind of thing, but in my mind, I would probably still be thinking that way.  Thus, as soon as I met "goal", I would pile even more poundage back on- fabulous.

4. Try- I wanted to try.  I had never really gotten to the point before where I just decided that you know what... I am over this whole fat thing (not that I was ever considered fat- save for pregnancy- but you get what I mean...).  I needed to at least give it a try first without a "plan".

My plan was simple:

1. Don't eat garbage: At first I just "starved the craving" by not allowing myself even a TASTE of anything that might trigger "snack mode".  I have a very impulsive, compulsive personality.  Once I open that bag of chips, it is gone.  Just one more... how about one more??  How about THE ENTIRE BAG!!!! OM NOM NOM NOM NOOOMMMMM!!!!!!!  After awhile, I could actually handle moderating my intake (ONE Hershey's chocolate kiss?  Don't mind if I do!).  I just finally starting thinking "are those calories actually worth the 30 seconds of 'yum'?"  Usually the answer was "no".  I also had to get out of the mindset that I was going to eat something because it was a special occasion.  There will always be a "special occasion".  Trust me.  Been there, done that.  I can make one up for today.  "Aww, well it is the weekend, and Travis is home, so it makes it difficult to eat better because he can eat whatever he wants.  Not only that, but I want to really be able to enjoy this day with our whole family home, and I can do that by eating what I want... like chocolate!"  Monday: "It is Presidents Day!"  Tuesday: "I spend this day with my mother-in-law shopping and such.  It is difficult to eat well when you are eating on the go.  Plus, we want to enjoy the day together!"  Wednesday: "Travis and I are using Wednesday as our surrogate Valentine's Day!  You can't eat well on Valentine's Day!"  Thursday: "I am thinking about going to a mom's get together thing on Thursday.  It will be difficult to eat healthy when I am out and about.  Plus, what if the other ladies are eating stuff that is bad for them... I don't want to be rude and not join in..."  Friday: "I have had a rough week taking care of my now 'toddler'.  It is Friday... time for a break... time for a pick-me-up!"  And now we are back to the weekend.  You see... if I wanted to, I could plan my excuses for the entire week.  At the end of it, the unhealthy food has added no true value to my life.  In fact, it has made my self-esteem plummet as I try to squeeze into my clothing and fail to do so.  So. not. worth. it.

2. Drink schtuff: Drink things that help with the cravings but don't give you the "munching" satisfaction.  Coffee with creamer, hot chocolate, chai tea with milk and honey... these are all of my go to "craving satisfiers".  When I say that I have to "starve the craving", I don't only mean the craving for something sweet or salty... it is that... but more than that, it is the craving to always being "eating" something- chewing- "munching" if you will.  I know a lot of people say "don't drink your calories", but hey, it worked for me.  I must be weird.  Let's not kid ourselves though... we already knew THAT!

3. Exercise daily: I got up EVERY morning at 5:00am and did my P90X workout...





Are you kidding me?!  I am still drooling all over myself in bed by the time Trav leaves for work (attractive visual, eh?).  I am talking one 30 minute WALK a day with T.J. in the stroller and a SHORT set of floor exercises and stretches before bed each night.  That's it!  Done.  Hey, it may not be much, but it is something.

4. Pray: You have no strength in yourself.  Lean on the Lord.

Well... that's it!  Oh wait... I do take pills- vitamins- haha!  Voila!  Don't get me wrong, it hasn't been easy by any means.  Has it been worth it?  Ohhhhh yes!  Most definitely worth it.

The reason my post is entitled "Starve the Craving" is because I have been struggling with 5 lbs I gained back during the time I had guests in town for T.J.'s birthday party.  His party was JANUARY 12th... in case you didn't know... really?  I couldn't manage to get 5 minuscule pounds off in over a MONTH?!?!  Lame.  Know why I couldn't?  Because I wasn't trying!!!  Since working at it, I have already gotten at least one pound off (that is from trying for the past few days... yeah... I wasted a whole month being less comfortable in my clothes when I could have started peeling that weight off right away... smart...).

Anyway!  I am back to step one- starving the craving- worst. step. everrrr.  However, I refuse to let myself do the same thing I have every other time I have tried losing weight: losing hope and letting it get out of control until I finally decide, yet again, that I want to try losing the weight.  By that point, I usually am bigger than ever, so I don't have to lose a few pounds... I have to lose the whole lot of it and then some!  WHAT a waste of time!

Just thought I would blog about my lifestyle change... for those of you who care!  =]  I hope maybe I can inspire someone out there who has been in or is currently in my shoes.

Any tips or tricks of the trade?  Have a story you'd like to share?  Have you made a nutritional lifestyle change recently about which you would like to share?  Want to respond to my post?  What to talk about your obsession with penguins?  Please comment!  =]


  1. you can eat healthy with me on the cruise.

    1. Yayyy!!! We will stick it out together! =] Thank you for commenting!

  2. Congratulations, Brittany, and thank you for sharing on this topic. It has been a journey for me too. I stopped 20+ years of diet-caffeine over a year ago. I now crave my daily go-to: water, lots of it. I have added exercising several times a week: walking, running, now biking. Green smoothies became part of my normal routine over the past year. The benefits of healthy eating came at me from friends, family, and my profession (nursing).

    However, the kicker to dropping the pounds has come in the spiritual exercise of fasting. I was invited to fast for 30 days by my daughter about 2 weeks ago. I chose to eat only fresh, non-processed foods. While running my 2nd 5K, a friend shared that she had done the Daniel Fast in January. As she shared what foods were allowed in that fast, I realized it was basically how I was fasting, with a few modifications. I am still reading up on the Daniel Fast, but I am incorporating what I am learning into my current fast. The weight is coming off, but it's linked to the spiritual journey of fasting with my daughter for her unspoken need.

    I am truly blessed as I walk with the Lord in this area of my life. It's not about my control; it's more about His control.

    1. Thank YOU! For sharing your story! I hope others reading my post will read your comment and glean some knowledge from your experience as well. Congratulations on stopping the diet-caffeine!! It is so bad for you! Shawn was saying about a month ago that studies show that drinking Diet Coke significantly raises your chances of being obese! Irony, eh?? Hmmm, I will have to research the Daniel Fast- sounds interesting! Definitely about His control- I KNOW it must be HIM because I know that I have positively NO willpower in and of myself- hahah! Thanks so much for commenting! =]

  3. I am really proud of what you have accomplished! And you are off to a great start with TJ by making him all that healthy homemade baby food-- now I am the only unhealthy one, though even that has improved since you keep our whole family eating better. Now if I could only exercise....

    1. Thanks for the comment and the support, baby. Yeah, exercise would be good for your health, but, not gonna lie, you kind of fall into the "erg-that-person-can-eat-whatever-he-wants-and-not-get-fat-no-fair" category. Hahaha! Love you!