December 11, 2022

Falling Apart

I'm feeling anything but brave while writing this vulnerable post, but I'm not sure what else to write that doesn't somehow encompass this: I'm falling apart.

Yes, that is a dramatic statement, but there aren't many words to describe how I'm feeling right now. Just a couple of months ago, I felt totally under control about my diet and exercise. While I was hesitant to write the words at the time, I felt like I had finally found the maintenance key I was looking for. I was eating healthy, I wasn't counting calories, I was eating foods I truly enjoyed, and I was loving running again.

The last picture of me where I felt really good about myself (mid-October)

Over the past couple of months, however, I've slowly been falling apart. I haven't been binge eating, but I definitely overeat--and not on healthy food, either. Pretzels and peanut butter are a favorite, as well as single-serve edible cookie dough that is super fast to make with common ingredients. Even bananas! I've been freezing bananas and blending them into a soft-serve ice cream consistency. I've had to stop buying any sort of nut butter because that's way too easy to eat hundreds of calories worth. I generally eat too large of a serving for dinner, too.

The simple answer is to just STOP. Go back to the old way of eating--the way I enjoyed, the way that felt good, the way that made me feel like I could do it forever, and the way that kept me from feeling like I'm falling apart. Why is this so hard, then?

As far as running goes... I haven't been. I have all sorts of excuses, but I know that they aren't valid excuses. I can certainly find the time to go for a run a few times a week, even if it's just on the treadmill.

I can definitely feel the weight gain in my clothes. My jeans, which were actually too big, are now feeling pretty snug. I had *just* taken in the waist of a lot of jeans to make them fit, too. 

I know this is catastrophic thinking, but I feel like this is the start of gaining back all the weight I just lost. Logically, I know it's only been a couple of months and if I start right at this moment, I can get my weight back down while keeping the damage as minimal as possible. But mentally, I just feel like all is lost. I feel like this is who I am, who I've always been: lose the weight, gain it back, lose the weight, gain it back.

I'm still scared to look at the scale, but I'm guessing I'm probably about 140. My plan (which I wrote about on Wednesday) was to log my food this week to see how many calories I was eating and to look at where those calories are going as far as nutrients. Not surprisingly, I haven't been doing that.

Other than what I mentioned above, I do eat a pretty healthy diet. I never eat restaurant food (maybe once every six months) and I eat a lot more fruits and vegetables than I used to. I try to get in fiber wherever I can.

I'm not saying that I'm doing everything right with my diet; I certainly have room for improvement. But this is definitely the healthiest I've ever eaten in my life. I just got in this downward spiral somehow and it's SO HARD to get out of it.

I make plan after plan, and I feel excited to do them, but one little thing will set me off and I go right back to zero. After the ideas I had on Wednesday's post (about why I may have been gaining), I talked to Jerry about it and he's obviously super supportive of whatever I decide to do. I mentioned how I stopped eating so much fiber because I was cooking vegan food for both of us instead of just me, and I didn't think he'd want to eat the same foods I was. He said he wants me to eat whatever it is that I want, and if he doesn't like it, he'll just make something different for himself. But he has really enjoyed trying new foods, so he might like it more than I imagine.

Without doing any sort of challenge for right now, I do want to at least come up with a plan. If I don't have SOME sort of plan, I'm just going to keep falling apart. So here is what I'm going to aim for:

1) Focus on fiber. That's when I was eating my best and I felt my best. Instead of rice, I'll go back to having barley or some other grain. I'll continue my favorite breakfast of Grape Nuts with blueberries and soy milk. And I'll eat my go-to oatmeal for lunch. I enjoy trying out new dinner recipes, so I'll just fill them with fiber however I can.

2) Make sure there is some sort of nutrition with whatever I eat. I didn't used to eat pretzels, because there really isn't anything good about them. They aren't terrible, but they aren't helping my body in any way. When I was trying to eat a lot of fiber, I always chose snacks like pears or nuts.

3) Drink a ton of water. I never feel good when I don't drink a lot of water, and if I'm eating as much fiber as I plan to, I need the water! I'd like to aim for four liters a day (about a gallon).

4) Get back to running (once again). I was really starting to like it again and then I stopped for whatever reason. Now that my body feels sluggish from eating crappy, it's hard to pick up where I left off. I'd like to aim for three miles, three times a week for now.

And that's it! Those are all things I was doing just a few months ago and I felt great doing them. They aren't too hard. I'm not eliminating anything from my diet. I'm not counting anything. Just eating fiber, drinking water, making healthy food choices as often as possible, and running.

Here goes nothing!


  1. Bring back the grapes - water in food counts too and there is fibre in the skin. You know it's really not bad yet. Just do one exercise session. Then maybe another later in the week. How is your sleep? Lack of sleep makes sticking to good eating harder as well as other stuff. This dark cold time of year is difficult for lots of us, one day at a time, do you use the sunlight lamp any more?

  2. I know how much you love a good challenge. The people who gave you Diet Bet also have an app called WayBetter. You can bet $10, and then if you submit a picture of your food log every day for two weeks, you get $10+ back. They have a variety of bets that focus on behavior, rather than the scale.

  3. Didn't you once drink a lot of tea, especially in the winter? I find it's hard for me to drink cold water in the winter, but unsweetened herbal or decaf tea is a great way to get hydration in the cold weather (and, if you are always cold, might help you feel warmer). It sounds like you're craving the crunchiness of the pretzels; there are lots of higher-fiber, crunchy things, like Mary's Gone Crackers, that have more fiber than pretzels and chips.

    1. I really wish I liked tea. It would have to be decaf. I tried so hard to like it, but maybe it was the brand? Could you suggest a tea I might kike? If so, thank you!

  4. Oh my how many times have I too been at the "falling apart" place. I don't have any answers, just more hugs. Know that you are loved. You are enough. You are doing it RIGHT because you are being YOU and YOU is the only way to do YOU. As always, thanks for your vulnerability.

  5. I've been vegan for a little over 5 years. I went really strict with Chef Aj's plan and got down to 114 pounds and stuck to it for 2 years. Then, in the teacher's lounge on the first day of school last year, I ate banana bread. It turned into a binge that lasted a year. I think I was starving and my body just wanted calories. I'm better now, but not completely. I still find myself bingeing on junk food on occasion Such a struggle....I wish I had the answers. A plan is always good for me but then it makes me think all of the control I make myself have could be part of the problem.

  6. Have you considered perhaps taking up some activity (e.g., volunteer work, hobby, etc.) so that you are distracted from your focus on food and eating? This would also give you so much satisfaction and help make you feel better about yourself. So much of your time is spent thinking about weight, what to eat, what not to eat, elaborate food prep, etc., and so much of your self-esteem is tied up in your weight. I know you are a SAHM so a job may not be feasible, but the more you can think about other stuff the better. Just a thought.

    1. I agree with what Jessie said. I know I am more prone to mindless snacking on days I'm less busy. I'm a homeschooling mom so it's hard to not be home and around the kitchen all the time. When I get busy with a project I feel a lot better!

  7. First of all, I am sorry that you are struggling - I know how difficult it can be to get out of a "bad habit" again (thinking of overeating and snacking), even though it may *just* be a matter of succeeding one day/night and feel the victory the next day! And then try to continue that for the famous three days to try to build the new habit... ;)
    I was actually thinking along the same line as Jessie above. That getting out of the house and meet some people during the day doing something very different from refurbishing and renovating the house would be good? I could use that for myself I know - before May of this year I had a very busy job with a lot of meeitngs with several people all day, and then I resigned and took a new job where I basically is on my own all day with no one to talk to and with too little to do and that really affects my mood (even though I am an introvert and really like my time alone) and also what I focus on (even though both jobs are working-from-home and that everything with the household and driving the kids have been on me!)
    I hope you will feel better soon!

  8. I so understand how you feel. I've gone throughout my life being megafit gal to slouch potato gal. I'm in slouch mode now and have been for over two years! Thank you for your honest and real account. It'll strike a chord with many who read your blog. Motivation comes and goes. It's been so easy to reach for the banana loaf and latte. I did go for a slow powerwalk four days ago and it felt good feeling the air in my face. My trainers are placed at the front door. I feel the urge to put them on. We'll see...

  9. Your posts remind me so much of myself, constantly cycling between in control and not in control. And wanting to just STOP, and knowing exactly what to do, but somehow being unable to do it. And knowing your thoughts are unhelpful but not knowing what to replace them with. I highly recommend books by Karen Koenig, especially Outsmarting Overeating and Words to Eat By. They really helped me recognize how dysregulated my eating had become and identify strategies for getting out of the nasty cycle I was in. I could go on forever about what a positive impact these books had on my eating and on my life.

    'Outsmarting Overeating' was amazing - I was a little skeptical in the first couple of chapters, but after that it was like reading a book that had been written exactly about me and for me. And 'Words to Eat By' really helped me identify my problematic thoughts around eating and taught me better options to replace them with. I read this about 6 months ago, and I still flip through it occasionally when I face tricky situations or feel my thoughts slipping back into old habits.

  10. Twining's Raspberry and lemon is a refreshing tea.

    1. Never heard of that one, but I'll get some. And Thank you!


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