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Merry's Monthly Check-in
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks! We traveled a ways to see it, but it was totally worth it--so much different from seeing a partial eclipse, or even a lunar eclipse.
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, despite a whirl-wind August with lots of traveling and lots of dissipation as my grandmother used to say, I somehow have ended up back at my beginning of July weight, down 28.5 lbs. This was a bronze-medal month with 2 NWS days and 2 red days, and some not-very-careful green days too (eating out when traveling, eating out with friends a bit more, but "technically" green). 15 workout days--8 were days I walked, 7 were days I did at least 14 minutes on the elliptical.

I'm just half a pound away from having a bmi in the "overweight" category instead of obese. I really want to cross that threshold! I had one or two days a couple of months ago where I did--but would really love to cross and sustain that. So, I want to try to renew my focus on basic green days again this month. My S days are not perfect, but I don't think I'm sabotaging a ton with them, though I might take a closer look after this next month if I don't see progress. I really think the key is usually in the habits we focus on the majority of the time though, those N days--and I know I've been lax there this summer.

So...onward!
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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oolala53



Joined: 06 Oct 2008
Posts: 8161
Location: San Diego, CA USA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good job on August. I hope you get to overweight land, too!
_________________
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 7 years & counting
Age 64
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but harder to maintain)
Dec/17 23.8

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I've hit that mark...3 months of not really losing anything. Blah! But as I've been praying and thinking about it, one thing I've realized is that I think it's time for my portion sizes to decrease again. When I first went to medium plates, I was usually comfortably full and experienced hunger just a bit before the next meal--but not uncomfortably so.

That's not the case any more.

Maintaining those plate sizes, I find that I'm often comfortably full about half to 2/3 of the way through a meal. Sometimes I'm uncomfortable--or on the verge of being so--by the time I finish. I don't know why I'm not stopping, but I'm not. Well, sometimes I know--I hate to have to throw something out if it isn't save-able (like leftover cereal!). Cereal is definitely one I've noticed--the bowl I used to eat is really too big now. A couple of nights ago I made half a bowl--and it really was just right. Other times I don't stop because hey, it's easier to just keep eating what's in front of me, I don't really want to think about it, inertia, laziness...LOL! No good reason!

So...with that in mind, I'm going to look specifically at portion sizes this month and times/ways to reduce them. I think a dessert plate is too small a lot of the time, so I'll have to be a bit more mindful than that...but maybe I'll come up with some new basic defaults that will work fairly easily.

Record-keeping wise, September had one NWS day and 2 red days (though not crazy red days--days with red events), and 16 walking/exercise days.

We'll see how October goes!
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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gingerpie



Joined: 06 Apr 2014
Posts: 885
Location: Pennsylvania, US

PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merry, you are the best at taking it one step at a time 😉slow and thoughtful through and through. Thanks for being here and sharing your process.
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oolala53



Joined: 06 Oct 2008
Posts: 8161
Location: San Diego, CA USA

PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on your compliance record!

You keep eating because most humans would keep eating when there's food there. Wansink says if you see it, you eat it. You're normal! (Sure, there are skinny people who leave food, but he says even they, when served more, eat more.)

I hear ya about the dessert plate. I just can't wrap my mind around how to put the different foods on one without it looking like a child's fare. But maybe child's fare would be enough for me. Shocked

Oh, if only there was a way to wipe out our memory of having eaten more before so that eating smaller portions didn't have to be so obvious.

And I think it's great that you're willing to keep adjusting.
_________________
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 7 years & counting
Age 64
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but harder to maintain)
Dec/17 23.8

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.
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Gracie



Joined: 06 Oct 2017
Posts: 62

PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merry, I love reading about your perseverance and willingness to keep adjusting until you get it right. Very inspirational for me!

Keep up the good work. Hopefully these next steps will be the ones that lead to the numbers continuing to drop down. Smile

xx
_________________
28 year old who believes that true growth comes from stepping outside of your comfort zone.
Fun-sized (4'10"), fun-loving, and on a journey to embrace a healthy and practical approach to food.
SW (10/9): 118#
CW (11/6): 113#
GW: 105#
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

oolala53 wrote:

I hear ya about the dessert plate. I just can't wrap my mind around how to put the different foods on one without it looking like a child's fare. But maybe child's fare would be enough for me. Shocked


LOL, I've actually had that thought lately! When my kids were little, I would get together with a good friend of mine who was shorter in stature, and she used to serve 1/4 of a sandwich with a couple slices of apple or carrot to her little boys. I was always shocked at how little they ate! Sometimes just taking a bite of that 1/4 bit of sandwich!

Sometimes I have 1/2 sandwich and some apple slices and I'm full before I finish the apple...I may need to go to 1/4 sandwiches or trying to save apple slices, LOL! (I share them with my kids when I can.)
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 5:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the encouragement, everyone! As I thought through everything, I realized two things:

1, I don't think my goal to be out of the "obese" range is unreasonable. I don't even think my goal to get to a 25 BMI is unreasonable (but one thing at a time, LOL!)

2, If it's not unreasonable, what will get me there that I'm willing to do long term? I am 100% convinced that if I go on some other (faster) diet, I'm going to rebel and have yo-yo weight gain. I've always done that. I don't have a good reason to think I'll change now, LOL! The only thing I've ever stuck with long-term is No-S--and since coming back to it almost 2 years ago now, I've been convinced that it's a sensible way to eat long-term--and any adjustments I make need to be somehow within the confines of that.

I could calorie count within the confines (I sometimes do that just to see where my plate is--but it's nice to not "have" to do that and to use it just as a "check." And I think when I calorie counted in the past, it wasn't in a 3-plate meal scenario--it was with 1-2 small snacks and it left me thinking about food all day but never satisfied. Meals are more satisfying.)

I could adjust what I eat within the confines (trying to work in more fruit/veggies--and I have done more of that since starting No-S too. Again, it's nice that it can be a "choice" and not something I "have" to do.)

I could exercise more (I'm walking more regularly now, but it's more of a "health" thing than a serious calorie burn of any kind. The one time in my life that I relied on exercise to lose weight, I sprained my ankle and put it all back on. Then I tried to start again and sprained the other, LOL! I'm not very athletic! I think gentle things for heart health are a better choice for me than serious workouts).

I find the 3-plate rules actually give me the most freedom (which makes me believe it's do-able, sustainable, and keeps me from "rebelling" against it because it's not overly confining.) Working within the structure makes sense to me.

I am going to experiment with S days a bit since I've done this so long. I like the idea of focusing on 3 meals, and letting the "S events" on those days be things that are enjoyed with others or special things. Lately I've been in this habit of jonesing on Sunday nights. What gives? LOL! Meals are good habits. Treats are fun with people, but this random roving for some unknown thing is an odd behavior (one I used to do many days a week--I like that No-S has curtailed that!) I really wasn't ready to do much about it on the S days though before now. Well, we'll see how the experiment goes!
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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oolala53



Joined: 06 Oct 2008
Posts: 8161
Location: San Diego, CA USA

PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that random roving is not odd, if odd means unusual. It's pretty pervasive in our culture and one of the things that No S helps quash. For me it is way more annoying than true hunger, I guess because eating doesn't really take care of it.

Csikszentmihalyi, researcher on "optimal experiences" said that though people say they long for leisure/unstructured time, they often don't feel optimal during it. But it also doesn't feel right to think I have to be busy all the time. Conundrum. Eating isn't the answer either for me. I think there are a LOT of people who are willing for eating to be their entertainment/pacifier. They just don't think putting up with that antsy feeling is a price they are willing to pay to feel lighter or peppier (some don't even know how they could feel) or to look different. I think that's another reason traditional dieting doesn't work. People say, oh I was hungry too much of the time, but I don't think it's real hunger, though I could be wrong.

And it's possible some of it is the body trying for homeostasis.
_________________
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 7 years & counting
Age 64
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but harder to maintain)
Dec/17 23.8

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.
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gingerpie



Joined: 06 Apr 2014
Posts: 885
Location: Pennsylvania, US

PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merry, I've had some luck developing default meals that meet my requirements but I don't have to think about. This allows me to follow a low-ish carb, heart-healthy plan without freaking out Wink

Weekend meals I tend to keep to no-s overall although that just came slowly over time and I don't fuss if I don't keep to it.
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jenji



Joined: 26 Sep 2017
Posts: 117
Location: Cambridge

PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are doing some good thinking, Merry. I am cheering you on!
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I'm a 48-year-old mom and non-profit CEO
I am 5' 7"
Began No S at 184#, BMI 28.4 - 9/25/2017
Current weight 177#, BMI 27.7 - 11/16/2017
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Merry



Joined: 22 Sep 2008
Posts: 1523

PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

oolala53 wrote:
I think that random roving is not odd, if odd means unusual. It's pretty pervasive in our culture and one of the things that No S helps quash. For me it is way more annoying than true hunger, I guess because eating doesn't really take care of it.


Odd more in the sense that it's nonsensical. It's accepted behavior (yes, pervasive!) in our culture--even encouraged as a way of handling stress--but if we step back and think about it, there's nothing logical, healthy, or helpful about it. It doesn't meet a physical need, and the feeling usually doesn't go away after eating (or only does after consuming things that are pretty unhealthy!) But we don't often step back to think about it (or don't think about it deeply enough to consider changing it). In stepping back--I find it very odd, illogical behavior (I do get that there's probably some chemical pleasure-center in the brain that wants stimulating etc...) The "self-care" that really isn't self-care at all! It's ultimately unfulfilling behavior that we accept and perpetuate.

No-S is helpful for quashing it on N days, and to some degree on S days (I don't do it like I used to, though I have noticed me doing it more these last couple of weeks or so). Anyway...thinking it through to decide how to quash it for S days as well. One of the things I'm thinking about is what "real" self-care is.
_________________
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.

28.5 lbs. down, 34.5 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.

"...slim cultures...value not overeating. They don't eat more of a food just because it's good. They enjoy the food more."--Oolala
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lpearlmom



Joined: 02 Aug 2013
Posts: 3409
Location: Arizona

PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like how you're looking at all your options & figure what you're willing and able to do long term. We're kind of in the same boat with bmis too high to just accept but stalled weight loss. I'm trying default meals for breakfast & lunch. Like you I'm also working on taming my S days a bit.

This weekend I decided to stick to 3 meals but allow sweets on each plate as well as Sweetened drinks. My sweets ended up being mostly virtually plated but I was able to avoid the constant snacking that really trips me up on the weekends.

Anyway, I'm still experimenting& I know you'll find happy solution for yourself. You've been such a NoS rock star & im sure that'll continue.

P.S. thanks for the well wishes re: my girls. 💕
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"Every weakness contains within itself a Strength."
Shūsaku Endō

3/14-210 lbs; 3/15- 202 lbs; 1/16- 172 lbs; 9/17-177 lbs; 11/10- 167.8 lbs

Current weight: 165.4 lbs






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Bluebell



Joined: 29 Sep 2016
Posts: 504
Location: Hampshire UK

PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Merry, I agree with Linda, you are really giving this some good thoughts, and have a lot of insight. Most of what you say echoes my own thoughts and feelings around food. In the end I had to put a stop to snacking on S days because I was just eating for the sake of it. Sweets and seconds are allowed at mealtimes and that's it. It felt like a huge step but once I did it, it was fine. I am sure you will find a way forwards and I really do admire you for hanging on in there through the tough times. Maintaining is better than gaining or yo yoing so in fact, in my books, you are still a winner! Smile
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"You'll know where the North Star is ⭐️" - Oolala
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Gracie



Joined: 06 Oct 2017
Posts: 62

PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merry, your thoughts and insight on this entire lifestyle change/process serves as such a great source of inspiration. Calculating what is going to best contribute to your long-term success is not only practical, but very wise. Smile
_________________
28 year old who believes that true growth comes from stepping outside of your comfort zone.
Fun-sized (4'10"), fun-loving, and on a journey to embrace a healthy and practical approach to food.
SW (10/9): 118#
CW (11/6): 113#
GW: 105#
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gingerpie



Joined: 06 Apr 2014
Posts: 885
Location: Pennsylvania, US

PostPosted: Sun Oct 29, 2017 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Merry, I was reading your post of Oct 13th and this idea came to mind.

https://jamesclear.com/marginal-gains

It's about a professional bicycle team but I think the idea applies to non-athletes as well.

Hope you're doing well
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oolala53



Joined: 06 Oct 2008
Posts: 8161
Location: San Diego, CA USA

PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2017 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merry, that's what I meant when I said I find it more annoying because it's become so obvious that it's ineffective for the problem at hand yet persists as a desire.

I find a lot of people talk about emotional eating as if it's almost impossible to overcome, like it's inevitable and understandable. I know what you mean about it seeming to have become culturally acceptable. I can't remember which sitcom I saw that had one of the female leads eating ice cream out of the carton as a stress reliever.

Then people so often report on Sparkpeople: "Such and such a thing happened so OF COURSE I overate/dove in the ice cream/ gobbled the chocolate, etc." Eating doesn't have to be an OF COURSE at all. We can train ourselves to think, "I felt overwhelmed and angry and a huge urge to binge so OF COURSE I fumed and cursed/surfed the net/lay on the floor and cried/felt the waves of discomfort roll through me/ called a friend and vented/ slammed things around/listened to a guided meditation/ was plagued by distressing thoughts for quite awhile, etc." I'm not saying these are better, but they are viable and to me, preferable, options, while drinking, gambling and the female versions of porn, romance novels, end up being as bad as the eating, so it's good to keep them off the table. OF COURSE, the ideal would be, "I reflected on the situation, accepted my distress, examined whether I was interpreting things in a supportive way for my well-being, determined if I could take action and took it or determined that it was unreasonable to think I could fix the problem right then, and went on to the next soothing, pleasurable, or productive thing to do and OF COURSE, I didn't take a bite of any food."

Now that would be some awesome prefrontal cortex work, no?

At the same time, being forgiving when we do take the old route is definitely preferable than fretting over knowing better and not acting on it.

I have a couple of notifications on my phone saying to stay binge free and to wait for dinner. I wish I could have one that just popped up randomly and said, "OF COURSE, I eat only at meals."
_________________
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 7 years & counting
Age 64
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but harder to maintain)
Dec/17 23.8

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.
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