Thursday, 11 May 2017

The 'no more dieting' diet.

I think it is safe to say that I have tried every diet under the sun. Probably twice. I have wanted to be Ella, at one point Dr Atkins and I had a special bond and carbohydrates and I fell out some time ago.

In my childhood and early teens I was considered to be very slim, downright scrawny in fact. I had an appetite like a horse and didn't give a hoot what I ate, as long as I could have 2 portions. And it never occurred to me to worry about my weight. But then age 18 arrived... And with that, over the next few years came alcohol, birth control and not eating at home very much any more. I started to 'bulk' up a little bit. I then moved to the UK for a couple of years and thoroughly enjoyed a pint or 3 on a regular basis and I ate very cheaply (because we needed to save that money for those pints!), cheap food sadly and confusingly does not often equal healthy food. I started trying to lose pounds but they always came back again - and brought 'friends'.

The pounds continued to creep on over the years and peaked with the birth of my 2 children. Hoorah! It can all be excused as baby weight! Except my youngest baby is now 10 and those pesky pounds are still firmly welded to my wobbly bottom.

I am not obese, in fact I dress so that my more jiggly bits are often well concealed and because I am tall and the jiggly bits are stretched out, some would say that I don't have too much of a weight problem. But, the fact is, the scale doesn't lie! And with that fact in mind - about 6 weeks ago I decided to stop listening to the scale so much.

Over the last few years I became a little obsessed with low carb diets and 'clean eating'. I thought that these ideas would revolutionise my eating habits and make me feel full of energy and I would be me but so much better! Sadly 3 years down the line I am still the same me but 10kg heavier. The reason is this : the minute I tell myself that I am on a diet I go insane, honest to god truly and obsessively nuts. Within 30 minutes of telling myself about 'THE DIET' I start to cram every tiny crumb I can find lying around my kitchen into my mouth - because who knows when next I will eat again on THE DIET? All I start to think about 24/7 is food and when next I can have some.

Don't get me wrong - I generally start strong (after inhaling everything I have left in my non-diet kitchen). I plan, I weigh, I count calories. I do all the right things. For 5 days. And then the spiral starts; of being good but being so terribly hungry all the time, so then in a moment of weakness I binge, then I feel bad...  Then I get over it and think 'oh well... I messed up today so I may as well just consume the rest of the fridge and I can be good again tomorrow'. And tomorrow is then exactly the same as today. And the cycle continues.

I don't really enjoy cooking - the faster a meal is to prepare, the better. So following a clean / low carb lifestyle started to stress me out. Stress makes me want to eat. Get the picture?

Over the last few months I have being doing a lot of reading and researching on how to achieve a calmer and simpler life.  I realised that the stress of meal plans and complicated cooking needed to go... I am fully aware that there are those out there that find a clean and low carb way of eating fantastic, and they find it easy. I am very envious of you and don't judge you at all, but for me it just wasn't working and it was making life complicated and making me miserable. So, I decided to be radical and start a new 'diet'... I wasn't going to diet any more. I decided to take it even further and not weigh myself any more either.

It has been 6 weeks and I can honestly say I am a better person for it. I don't know what the scale would say if I got on it, and frankly I don't care! Something weird has happened in the last 6 weeks - I have stopped obsessing about food. It is as if giving myself permission to eat what I like when I like has taken the childish obsessive behaviour out of it all. Sure, if I had been eating only salad, some protein with a little bit of good fat over the last 6 weeks I probably would be significantly lighter - but I can be pretty sure that I certainly wouldn't be content. And at the moment being content is what I am focusing on. I think I am losing weight because my chin doesn't seem to 'fold up' as much when I lower my head to read a book, and my belt is seeming a fair bit looser. But, that all seems like a nice by-product right now. The main revelation for me it that my stress levels are significantly lower so that means... I am me... but so much better!

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The 'no more dieting' diet.

I think it is safe to say that I have tried every diet under the sun. Probably twice. I have wanted to be Ella, at one point Dr Atkins ...