(Mental)Health.

This week has been challenging, and I’m not all that sure why.

For days I’ve felt as if I’ve been perched on the edge of a cliff, just one careless movement away from plunging into the abyss. I haven’t felt like this in quite sometime — not since the very early days of my journey.

A day or two ago, I was very, very close to going on a food bender. I was thinking about deep dish pizzas and cheeseburgers and breakfast burritos. I was thinking about what would happen if I did it just once. I wondered what it might be like to put my Weight Watchers tracker out of mind and just eat and drink whatever I wanted without worrying about it or consciously thinking about it for just one day — or, maybe to a lesser extent, just one meal.

As I was thinking this, however, the now stronger, more logical part of my brain was screaming; I knew that I was headed down a very dark and very dangerous path, but I didn’t know why. That (seemingly) more logical part of my brain was muddled with so much confusion, and a voice inside my head was yelling. STOP STOP STOP. Analyze. Why. Why. Why. Why.

I tried to focus on my body and listen and feel. I told myself to calm down.

Don’t go to the fridge. Don’t go to the fridge. Don’t go to the fridge.

And you know what?

I figured something out when I was listening and feeling.

My stomach was full. I had eaten a nice, healthy, hearty meal not long before this urge took over.

My stomach was not the driving force of my hunger — my hunger was coming from a different place, a place that food won’t ever be able to satisfy.

I did not go on a bender.


Today, the hunger came back.

This time, I was more prepared. This feeling has been here all week — it’s becoming familiar to me now.

It was familiar to me before, but it’s a new kind of familiar now.

I started to think about what I could do. What’s wrong? What’s bothering me? What’s happening? How can I fix it?

I brewed a cup of my favorite coffee — the one I save for “special occasions” — Dunkin’ Donuts Blueberry Muffin. I added 1 Tbsp. of International Delight Fat Free & Sugar Free French Vanilla creamer.

I sipped. I thought. I decided that it’s time for a change.

This second round of the Steps Challenge has been hard. Too hard. I don’t enjoy going for walks anymore; it’s just something I do (when I do it, that is) because I feel obligated. I started this, so I have to finish it. There are people looking at me, expecting things from me, following me. It’s OK to let myself down, but, for some reason, it’s not OK to let others down, especially not when they’ve invested in me — in my life and my story.

This is a problem.

There are some serious flaws in my reasoning here, obviously.

So I think it’s time to do a little soul searching and focus on part of this journey that I’ve maybe been neglecting a bit lately: my mental health.


When I started this journey, I set out to get healthy — physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. I have done very, very well with improving some of those things, and not so well with others.

So to combat that, I’ve decided to try something I have always wanted to do but avoided because of my size: yoga.

Yoga will be good for me physically, and I’m hoping that it’ll do wonders for me mentally and emotionally, too. Maybe if I’m lucky, I’ll get some spiritual help, as well — who knows.

I am going to finish out the remainder of this leg of the 1,000 Extra Steps Challenge — because it’s important that I do that — but then I’m going to hang up my Nikes for a bit.

I am going to finish out the rest of this challenge because I need to learn that letting myself down is just as bad as letting other people down, and I also need to see things through because quitting any part of this journey is unacceptable. I’ve given up on myself in the health department too many times to count — that’s how I ended up weighing almost 320 lbs. at age 21. It’s not OK to give up on myself anymore, even if I don’t want to do this or I don’t like doing it.

The challenge ends on March 16, 2015, and once it does, walking is no longer going to be my main focus, but it is certainly still going to be part of what I’m doing.

Here’s the plan:

I am going to go and buy a cheap yoga mat and then look around Wal-Mart or maybe even Goodwill for a cheap beginner’s yoga DVD. Once I find what I need, I’m going to commit to 30 days of yoga. Maybe I’ll do it for 10 minutes on some days, maybe 30 minutes, maybe an hour. I am not going to put a time stamp on that; I’m just committing to a solid 30 days of doing yoga, no matter what. I might not be any good at it, but it doesn’t matter. I’ve always wanted to do it, so I’m going to do it.

I am also going to set a goal of getting in 7,000 steps twice a week. I have been trying to do 7,000 steps each day, but I’m failing miserably. I think, though, if I maybe build my new goals around the number of days versus the number of steps that I’ll do better.


Maybe that familiar feeling of non-stomach-related-hunger will go away once I start treating myself better, yeah?

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 11.03.25 AMI hope you’re all well.

rachaelxoxo

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18 thoughts on “(Mental)Health.

  1. I love reading about your challenges and how you find a way to overcome them. Sometimes we spend so much time doing what others want from is that we forget about what we want.
    I use to self-soothe with food too.
    Even now, when I get a headache, or a sore throat I want my comfort concoction of 30 years: a large McD coke and a SuperSized Fries.

    I’m going to take your advice:: start asking myself what’s REALLY wrong before I attempt a gorging of pie or fries. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much!

      It isn’t easy, and sometimes I don’t necessarily overcome the challenges. I ate more than I should’ve yesterday. Nothing too crazy — nothing like I would’ve done BEFORE — but I still had too much. My lunch today was questionable, too.

      But it’s OK! I’m doing OK. 🙂

      I understand about your comfort concoction; I think we all have them. Strange what we find ourselves using food for, isn’t it?

      Like

    • It’s a confusing thing. I try hard to be self-aware, but I’m not like this all the time. My journey isn’t perfect, and sometimes I do eat too much.

      I ate too much yesterday, and my lunch today was not that great either. Thankfully, I haven’t done anything too crazy, but I am still not doing everything the “right” way. 😉

      If you do try talking to yourself, I hope it works for you! ❤

      I will look at some of the yoga on YouTube, too. Part of me thinks I need to buy a video, though. If I spend money, I'm more likely to see it through! Ha! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I tried yoga before and didn’t enjoy it, but I think it’s because I didn’t take my time and get a beginners DVD. I started with Jillian Michaels and she kicks my ass, lol. I would be interested in doing a yoga challenge if you start one. 😉

    Amber

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Jillian Michaels is NOT my speed at the moment! Ha! 😉

      I would love it if you did yoga with me, though! I think that’s a good idea. I’ll bring it up tomorrow when I write my weigh-in blog. 🙂

      We’ll figure out how to make it work! ❤

      Ps,
      You are kicking butt this week steps-wise! That's awesome! I am SO proud of you! Xo.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve been trying to focus on the mental side of this for most of my journey, and I completely agree with you and the quote… we need to love ourselves before anything else. How can you have the will to improve when you feel like you aren’t worth it? I have been really struggling the last two days. Unlike you, I did go on a bender. 😦 I know I’m still a work on progress and I can accept that.

    I’m also feeling “over” the step challenges. I loved walking for a long while but now it’s becoming a chore. Plus, it’s getting hot here in FL again making it worse. Everyone else seems to be dropping off this month, so maybe I’ll focus on another form of exercise too. I’m as flexible as a plank of wood so idk about yoga lol! I’m so proud of you and you’ll always be my inspiration 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know — I completely agree with you and understand what you mean. I have trouble loving myself, too, which I think is obvious by just looking at me! No one that truly loves themselves would eat themselves into the state that I did. No one that respects themselves would treat their body as badly as I treated mine. That’s a hard realization to face, but it’s necessary in order to continue to move forward.

      I am so sorry you’re struggling. I empathize!

      I ate too much yesterday — I wanted a 10 pc. pack of chicken mcnuggets from McDonald’s. It was 13pp + 2pp for two packets of my favorite dipping sauce: spicy buffalo. I get 43pp per day, and by the time lunch rolled around, I had 29pp to spare. I could’ve had McDonald’s for 15pp — that would’ve been OK!

      But I didn’t.

      Instead, I went home to eat, and because I didn’t answer to my craving, I ended up overeating to compensate. I gorged myself on corn tortilla chips. I went over my daily allowance yesterday by 7pp. Seeing as the tortilla chips were low-fat, that was A LOT of overeating.

      Being 7pp over, in the grand scheme of things, wasn’t TOO bad, but it still wasn’t good, and I still overate and ate when I was not hungry. :/

      So you’re not alone!

      Also, I think it’s OK to change exercise routines. Walking doesn’t have to be the end-all-be-all, and it’s OK not to like it! It’s taken me awhile to come to that conclusion, but I finally have!

      And as for flexibility — I am not flexible either, but yoga should help with that! So if you want to try it, I think you should! But if not, that’s OK, too! ❤

      I hope you're doing better today, Brittany!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Losing weight is VERY HARD. When we overeat we hate ourselves and the fact we can’t stop eating. (At least I hated myself)
    BUT
    BUT- God loves me (you too) even when I (you) screw up. I don’t know about you but I have screwed up a lot. I have wasted 41 years struggling and losing battles, being defeated every time .
    BUT
    BUT God has seen fit to show me mercy and deliver me from . . . Myself.
    It is wonderful to know that when He looks at you all He sees is your beauty.

    I have found that in my journey the more I focus on diet/ exercise the greater the battle. The more I focus on my relationship with God and give it to Him, the easier the battle and the weight drops off. Some days I am amazed at the weight because I know it wasn’t anything I did. I feel as though God is healing me from what has held me in bondage for most of my life.
    Rachel,
    I have to ask. I’m getting so nosy now. Could not your discouragement be because of your friend with cancer. The reason I ask is that I have lost several the past couple years. I lost my very best friend to MS due to bladder/kidney infection. She struggled over 18 years. She was my very best friend, Lana.
    I told God that it would have been really good PR for Him if He had healed her instead of taking her home. What was He thinking? Sometimes I wonder why I haven’t been struck by lightening. And yes, at times life just makes you want to go on a “food drunk”. Been there, done that.

    Listen to this 62 yr old grandmas- don’t you stop, don’t you give up, and don’t you quit. Change your program if you want to, but don’t ever quit. Sometimes miracles happen when you’re 62. Don’t wait as long as I did, you have so much life ahead. Go out and live.
    I am messing now- it might not be a mental problem, but maybe a spiritual problem.
    Find a quiet place and scream at God if you want. He can take it, I know. I cussed Him once and He still loved me. Amazing. Let Him spend some time loving on you too.
    I know this was long and I preach too much. You can delete my comment if you want. But it’s amazing how I have grown to care deeply about you all .
    I always put my link up because if you click on my name the site won’t come up. Tech challenged grandma got a help book from kindle. Maybe I can fix it next week. Can’t now, I got grandchildren with me. Pray we all survive. LOL
    Love to you all , Meemaw Debbie
    http://www.talkingtomyweightlosscounselor.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would never delete your comment, Debbie (Is that what you prefer to be called? You wrote that here, so I’m just wondering! Your screen name is Deborah, so that’s what I’ve always called you, but now that you wrote that, I can see that name fitting your personality much better! 🙂 )

      I think that you’re right in suggesting that part of my discouragement stemmed from learning that my friend has cancer. My maternal grandmother, whom I was so very, very close to, died from cancer in 2006. I was reminded a bit of that when Betty told me that she was ill. When my Gram was first diagnosed, they told us that it was treatable. She was taken into surgery on a Monday, and it was supposed to take many hours. The doctor came out less than an hour later, though, and informed us that the cancer had spread as soon as they opened her up. There was nothing else they could do. She was moved to hospice the next day, and she died less than a month later. I was 13 at the time, and I was totally and completely devastated. Even now, nine years later, it still upsets me to think of it. I miss her terribly….

      When Betty told me they planned to do surgery and then chemo and radiation, I immediately thought of my grandmother and about how they’d told us that, too, but then she ended up dying… I guess my mind sort of went to a bad place. I am not the sort of person that hears the word “cancer” and thinks that things will work out. I hear “cancer” and immediately think “death.”

      So, yes, I do think that this was partially why I had such an off week.

      Thank you so much for always taking the time to check in and support me.

      You are such a wonderful lady with a sweet spirit and kind soul. I’m happy to know you and so happy that you’re walking with me on this journey! XO.

      Like

      • I have become so emotionally attached. I’m sorry if I fuss too much. I so want success / victory for you and the others too. It is my hope y’all find victory now while young and not waste years like I did .
        Deborah is my screen/ professional name. But since I was acting like an inferring bossy grandma, I signed off what my grandkids call me- Meemaw Debbie. Love to you Rachel

        Like

  5. Pingback: Switching Routines… | Being Happy

  6. I’m so proud of you, especially after this post. We all need a little soul searching sometimes and the fact that you recognized that in yourself is a huge step. I am really interested in trying yoga and I think I may join you because that is an excellent idea and I’ve heard nothing but good things about how amazing it makes you feel. Good luck and we’re all cheering for you!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Harley!

      I appreciate your support so much! You’re such a great person, and you’re an inspiration to me!

      You’ve done so well this week with your steps, too! Congratulations!

      I would love it if you decided to try yoga! I always like it when we all do things “together” even though we’re all over the place! 😉

      Like

  7. Pingback: 267.2 | My Journey--One Day at a Time

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