Archives for posts with tag: how to follow hunger

There is this book called “The Four Agreements”.  I read it years ago and whenever I kind of lose my center I always re-visit these guidelines.

I have been thinking a lot about one of the Agreements, which is, “Always Do Your Best”…. I suck at this.  I don’t suck when my best is my best… I suck when I feel like my best isn’t good enough.  To be frank, I still grapple with the idea that I can’t be the best version of myself until I think my body is “doing it’s best” and by “doing it’s best”, I mean looking the way I think it needs to look.

 

always do your best

When it came to 2014 I struggled to do my best in every arena of my life.  And, by my standards, constantly came up short.  It was, to say the least, a year of tests… hard ones.  As far as body image goes I feel like I literally spent 365 days worried about my weight, my appearance, my body and if I wasn’t worried about it I was worried about not worrying about it!  There were days when I was literally consumed by food/exercise and how it all affected my body.

July brought me to me knees – I felt out of control so I went back to the safety of protocol.  Just a little FYI – our protocol doesn’t work when it’s about CONTROL and RESULTS and thus is was a half-hearted attempt.  But it wasn’t a waste.  Finally in a strangely exquisite way.

THIS.

WAS.

ROCK.

BOTTOM.

I came into August with a level of Apathy that actually left me concerned.  I have suffered situational depression in my life.. .but this was different… this was not sadness – I just didn’t care. About anything.  Everyday was a struggle to muster up the energy to do anything.  It was the strangest feeling – this not caring.

I see now that I needed to get there to learn that not caring anymore was not going to kill me. That spending precious energy on making my body perfect was not going to absolve me from feeling imperfect.

I’m learning to love all of the lessons that 30 years of dieting has taught me…. in my heart it feels so liberating!  However, my brain is taking awhile to catch up… all this hard wiring of immersing myself in that culture is difficult to un-do.  Every day it’s gets a little closer to my heart and my soul. And my heart and my soul is where the real work needs to be done.

I am currently doing our Protocol. Along with several of our clients.  I feel very zen about it and whenever I am having a rough day I am finding ways to PERMANENTLY overcome all of these issues.

2014 was not the best example of myself and who I want to be and who I am capable of being… but I was “doing my best”. And that is enough.  ❤

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Oh my friends… having some weird times lately.  Feeling stuck, feeling overwhelmed and then feeling numb.  I realize that I have spent so much of my life in the pursuit of weight loss that I don’t know what to do with this free space in my head – so I dip my toe in the possibilities and everything comes rushing at once and I want to do it all… RIGHT NOW!  So… back to stuck again… and I run through the cycle.

So in noticing all of this lately – something else has been cropping up… some little part in my noggin’ that I thought was gone has started picking on me again… Those “After” pictures that I was so proud of 2 or 3 months ago are starting to look different to me. I am starting to criticize them and “find the fat” if you will.  It’s like this track in my brain wants to keep playing the same old song and dance and the only way it can get me to do that is to change what I see so it can keep me a prisoner of how I feel about my body.  So, now, instead of feeling proud of my “After” pictures I start to see where I could lose some more weight, where I could “tone” things up, where I need to ask the people that I’m coaching for forgiveness because I know my body isn’t “just right” so who am I to tell them how to change theirs???  Ugh, so gross.

So, now I see the cycle of the last year and everytime that asshole in my head started to pick on me and my body I would do another round of protocol… I would change my “After” picture a little bit more…  but something has changed that’s bigger than just an “After” picture…  I acknowledge that over a year ago when I was contemplating doing my first round of protocol I remember negotiating my little deal with the Universe… I remember saying “if I could JUST get there…” (with my weight) “I’ll be happy… I’ll be satisfied…”  and guess what? I’m there.. and most of the time I am happy and satisfied – but oh that asshole in my head!   I see decades… yep, I said it DECADES of wishing for a body I was NEVER going to have… Even when I was “imaginary fat” I was ALWAYS chasing 5 or 10 pounds…. 5 or 10 pounds kept me away from body satisfaction and made me a prisoner to diet and exercise…  So I see it now, truly – that even another round of protocol is not going to be the cure here…  It’s NOT about my body…

So… my solution?  No protocol.  Just maintenance. Just living. Just learning to treat my body with love and respect. Just yoga. Just sex. Just eating good food when I’m hungry.  Just celebrating life as it is.   Just being in THIS body. Right now.  To let who I want to be realize that I want to be so much more than a pant size or a number on the scale.  That I NEED to teach two amazing little girls that how much physical space they take up in this world is irrelevant to who they are and how much spiritual space they must contribute!

What a waste… what a waste… what a waste…. time to focus on things that I CAN change….

waste

The following is a submission I received upon request from a Goodbye My Muffintop Client – she has asked to remain anonymous but I am sure that many, many of you will relate to her story.  She is such a perfect example of why a person could benefit from the hormonal re-set that our program provides!  She didn’t need to eat better or exercise better… she wasn’t doing anything wrong.  She just needed to learn how to listen to her body…   To date her pounds lost remain an unknown… but after her first round of protocol she lost an incredible 44.5 inches!

My body image issues date back literally as far back as I can remember.  Even around the age of 4 years old I have memories of being called the “chubby chicken” & compared to my “skinny minny” sister by my mother.  Now if you want some deep seeded issues, I’ve got them.  Can any of you imagine being in kindergarten and not wanting to eat your snack because you thought it would make you fat and mom would get mad for it?  These nasty little self destructive voices took up permanent residency in my brain by the time I was 7 and took up dance.  I remember being fitted for a costume and being told to suck it in because I was big enough, I need shrink room not growth room. I was NOT overweight by any means at this time but I lived in a toxic environment.  My mom and dad had divorced a year prior and my mom was essentially anorexic from the stress.  Of course, she thought she looked great and for the next 17 years we lived on this diet roller coaster with her.

My mom went through a series of rollercoaster relationships which in turn led to crazy ups and downs for us in the eating/diet department at home not to mention the emotional toll it took on me.  By 7th grade on the doorstep of puberty, I was miserable, I had gained weight (mostly due to puberty) and was constantly criticized for it by my mom, hearing things like “I guess it wasn’t just baby fat after all”.  I had even adopted the nickname “hippo” from I don’t even know where.  Entering high school I was an emotional wreck, I wanted so badly for things to get better, I found a new group of friends and tried to pick up the fragments of self-esteem I had left.  Of course as we all know, high school is a vicious place, I was tormented for being fat, which I wasn’t, but it didn’t matter those nasty little voices were in my head and had me completely convinced that I was disgusting.  It didn’t matter what kind of reassurances my friends (who were genuinely good friends) gave me, the whispers, pokes in the stomach and taunting from others just reinforced those nasty little voices in my head and amplified them.

In 9th grade I started making myself throw up so I didn’t have to go to school.  I thought if I could escape the torment, I would be able to cope.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t, it was a slippery slope for me, I saw the number on the scale going down so I continued.  I struggled with bulimia for the rest of high school, eating with my friends at lunch then the first chance I got during class, going to the washroom to purge.  I would get a high from the little bit change on the scale which pushed me further and further down the downwards spiral, leading to other forms of coping like alcohol.

On my graduation day, I met my husband to be and felt that the pressure was on more than ever before to maintain my body image so that I didn’t lose this wonderful guy.  it wasn’t until almost a year after we had started dating that I was driving home from work (with him following behind me in his car) and almost getting into a head on collision because I had not eaten in 3 days and my body was literally shutting down, that I was completely shaken.  I can barely remember any of what happened but he still reminds me of how terrified he was that he would lose me.  I spent the next 2 years overcoming my battle with bulimia but fueling it with another diet for me to fixate on.  I got pregnant and we were ecstatic, then I lost the baby because my body was struggling to keep me alive, let alone grow another life.  This broke my heart and shook me to my core.  I dug deep and started fighting for me.  Slowly, I stopped extreme dieting, started eating a little more and more until I had energy again.

A few months later, I got pregnant again and started to panic that I would lose another baby so I ate, and I mean I ATE.  Everything and anything that appealed to me, I ate.  Around the 2.5 month mark, I got what everyone told me was just morning sickness, but in my case it was terrible, I was sick all day every day, there wasn’t a meal that I ate that didn’t come back up.  The sick thing is that my brain was telling me “that’s great, you won’t gain a bunch of weight while you’re pregnant.”  It took every ounce of strength in me to do everything in my power to get food into me but I wasn’t doing it for myself, I was doing it for this helpless little life inside of me.  Getting praised by the doctors for not gaining weight would be music to most pregnant women’s ears, but for a recovering bulimic who is fighting to eat while her body is essentially forcing her to be bulimic again, it’s a nightmare.  Finally after giving birth to my son, I was able to eat again and destined to prove my body wrong, that I wasn’t still bulimic, I ate and ate and ate.  When I got pregnant again 1 year later, my new doctor figured that my “morning” sickness would be less prominent so I continued to eat whatever I wanted, looking forward to having a normal pregnancy.  WRONG, the sickness hit me again and I again went through the same battle.  After our next son was born, I gorged myself again, I was miserable every time I stepped on the scale but it didn’t matter, I was insistent on proving to myself that I was not the girl I was in high school and I was trying to set a “normal” example for my kids, not allowing diets to be present in their lives.

After my third pregnancy, I was frustrated and fed up.  I was the heaviest I had ever been in my life and was looking for something, anything to grasp at.  I started working out with a wonderful group of ladies and I felt great, I was losing a little weight and gaining confidence, which was great.  However, it became an addiction, I was there 5 days a week with all 3 kids in tow, sometimes there for 2 classes.  It became all about seeing that number on the scale go down now that I knew we were done having kids.  I thought I was setting a great healthy example for my kids.  We adopted a clean eating (for the most part) lifestyle, my kids saw me working out hard both at the gym and at home and I felt great.  Great until I stepped on the scale every time.  I spent a year busting my ass at the gym and eating predominantly clean to only watch my weight fluctuate up and down by a few pounds.  My trainers all told me that I HAD to hit my caloric goal each day or I would continue to put the weight on so I had to obsessively journal everything that I consumed.  It was tedious and I was exhausted, I knew mentally there had to be more to it than a magical number of calories but I trusted my trainers, I had seen their successes so I kept on trotting down the beaten path.  I weighed myself daily like I had done since the age of 9, had my measurements taken weekly and the scale had become my lifeline more than every before.  It was the largest key to my happiness and success.  If the scale didn’t budge or heaven forbid went up, I beat myself up mentally, measured, journaled, worked out just a little bit more.

It came to a point where I was completely and utterly done, I had injured myself at the gym, I couldn’t work out and I fell into a depression.  I just didn’t care, if I couldn’t work out, I wasn’t happy, if I wasn’t I didn’t care what we ate, if I didn’t care what we ate, we ate crap and I felt like crap.  Even more so when I stepped on the scale.

A few months ago haphazardly and only from a miscommunication in a message between Kelly and myself, we got to talking about the GBMM products and she started asking me some questions.  To say I was skeptical would be an understatement, I was completely and totally against it.  But some of Kelly’s questions/statements (some of which I can’t even remember now) got me thinking.  I started on a mission to uncover the skeletons in my closet and deal with them one by one.

What a shitty month, my poor husband lol.  One of the last demons I had to deal with was my dependance on the scale.  It had dictated more than half of my young life.  I had tried a couple of times in the past (mostly during my hardcore workout phase) to ditch the scale, I hid it under the bed but I would sneak off and weigh myself anyway.  I weighed myself on Valentine’s Day morning and let me tell you, it totally ruined my “mood” for that evening with hubby, beating myself up and thinking that if he knew the number he would be disgusted and that was the final straw.  I couldn’t, wouldn’t allow the scale to dictate my life anymore.  I was punishing more than just myself,I was punishing my husband and I’m sure many others along the way.  I vowed to myself I wouldn’t live this way anymore, I threw out the scale and haven’t looked back.  I cannot tell you how completely liberated I feel.  It really is like a big weight has been lifted off my shoulders.  It’s not easy, it’s only been just over a month and it’s a completely foreign world to me, to not get up every morning and weigh myself.  But I’m starting to finally find me for the first time in my life, setting all of the bullshit and demons aside and realizing that I’m more than just a number or how someone else perceives me.  My body is just that, my body, it doesn’t define me and neither does the scale (anymore)!

the scale

Something I have learned in the last 10 months that has really been the game-changer is following the hunger scale…  As I have indicated before I was a pretty strict follower of all things diet and fitness related and when I was being very strict with my food intake I would eat every 2 to 3 hours… You know, we have all heard it before “eat every 2 to 3 hours to avoid hunger…”  So I did, and it has literally taken me 10 months to actually re-train my head and my body to tell me when it is appropriately hungry.  I cannot imagine what years and years of eating without hunger had done to me – hormonally speaking.  Throw on a great deal of stress and emotional eating for the last 3 years and you really had a recipe for disaster.  Why do we need to avoid hunger?  What’s wrong with being hungry. It’s how our bodies communicate to us that it needs fuel.  We don’t say “avoid needing to go to the bathroom by sitting on the toilet every 2 to 3 hours”…. so why do we do this with food???  More on that in another post 😉

So, all the naysayers out there will tell you that this program is a starvation diet… “Of course you lose weight fast – you are starving…”  I have said it before AND I will say it again… if you are taking similar drops and feeling extreme hunger the drops are not working – the drops are not creating the proper hormonal response that essentially has your body “eating” your abnormal fat stores… these abnormal fat stores are created after years and years of yo-yoing, having babies, getting older…  AND do create quite a nasty hormonal cocktail.    I assure you, this is NOT a starvation diet…. Kelly don’t do starvation… I’m the kind of girl that could be lying in a ditch, bleeding to death and if someone offered me a sandwich –  I would take it!   We do not encourage people to eat only 500 calories – we encourage people to eat protocol appropriate food when they are HUNGRY with a focus on the prescribed proteins…  People with a lot of abnormal fat stores will often eat less than this….  Sometimes you are hungry for more than this… The important piece is to eat when you are hungry and stop when you are satisfied.  When you are on the protocol you REALLY notice how much you eat in a day without hunger… clearing the kids’s lunch plates – pop in a grilled cheese crust, going to the movies – grab some popcorn, watching Survivor – eat on behalf of those poor starving contestants…   When I look back at the times when I was really monitoring my food and making the healthiest possible choices I was still probably eating 600 or 700 calories a day without hunger (this was usually the good old pre and post- workout snacks)!  I encourage my clients to start following the hunger scale before you start the protocol so you can get in touch with your hunger cues without the fear of not having enough food during the calorie restriction (just the thought of not having enough food makes people “think” they are hungry without feeling physical hunger).

I can’t say it enough…. I can still hear Marriann saying to me “I feel like it pushed a “re-set button” on my body…” and it’s so true.  If you gave the old college try to lose weight and get healthy for the first 3 weeks of January and your results are less than desirable – please give me a buzz – please consider that you need just a little extra push to get your metabolism fired up again…  Please ask questions and share your fears and concerns – I certainly did and now the more I learn and the more I discover myself the more convinced I am that I was NEVER going to lose weight and “Re-set” without this program…

Click here on  products to learn more about the products and how to contact me.

hunger scale

Ideally – you want to stay in the 4 to 6 range….  try it for a day… it’s not as easy as it seems 🙂