Octavia is finally checking in!

Counting carbs/calories is a drag. Obsessive scale stepping is a recipe for despair. If you want to count something, "days on habit" is a much better metric. Checking off days on a calendar would do just fine, but if you do it here you get accountability and support. Here's how. Start a new topic in this forum called (say) "Your Name Daily Check In." Then every N day post a "reply" to that topic as to whether you stayed on habit. A simple "<font color="green">SUCCESS</font>" or "<font color="red">FAILURE</font>" (or your preferred euphemism if that's too harsh) is sufficient, but obviously you're welcome to write more if you want. On S-days just register that you're taking an S-day. You don't have to do this forever, just until you're confident you've built the habit. Feel free to check in weekly or monthly or sporadically instead of daily. Feel free also to track other habits besides No-s (I'm keeping this forum under No-s because that's what the vast majority are using it for). See also my <a href="/habitcal/">HabitCal</a> tool for another more formal (and perhaps complementary) way to track habits.

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Octavia
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:46 pm

For me, there is never a stopping point with pasta! It just slips down!! Did Sophia Loren really eat as much as she claimed? I doubt it, the minx!

N days are normally fairly easy for me. Friday evenings I start to feel the struggle, though. I’m tired and we often visit the supermarket, with DH and DD buying luscious puddings and treats. But on the whole, N days work amazingly well for me. That is great advice, Auto, that if one is after weight loss, it’s better to make the N days a bit lighter than try to dabble with the release valve of the S days. thanks so much for that tip: it’s been a while since I even considered eating lighter on N days, but I could do so with no trouble. Go easier on the bread. And pasta, if possible!

I’ve had a really good day, in that I actually went for a run, breaking my long stint of doing so little exercise. And I found a method that seemed to really help me keep going - taking longer walking breaks. I ran for 7’, walked for 8, and repeated that till I’d done an hour or so. All in all I was running for round about 28’, which is way more than I was doing before! I just needed more recovery time in between stints of running. I’ve felt so much stronger and calmer after doing this. Even when some work stress came in, I was better able to deal with it.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:37 pm

Another lovely day here in the UK. It’s like Spring, almost summer! After the run yesterday, I was aching all over. I did my small 14’ exercise stint this aft- quite tricky as DD interrupted me with a cry from the heart, and I had to give sympathetic counsel for a good half hour.

Ate normally: 3 plates, though dinner was a small portion of reheated veggie shepherds pie, and I feel I need something else such as fruit or yoghurt, or I’ll get too hungry later - going out tonight.

Tomorrow I want to go running again. It has to become a habit!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:45 pm

I did go running again. It felt more tiring this time - I’d had a bad night - but still did my four times jogging down that track, four times walking back. It is great to feel I’m exercising at quite a high intensity, yet without hitting that brick wall.

Have enjoyed my meals, though as dinner was very late I did my old Fibre Supplement mod, when I have some fruit/veg as a snack in the afternoon. Had a raw carrot and an apple, and felt very bloated and gassy afterwards! I think it helped in the long run, though.

The extra exercise is certainly making me feel better, more comfortable in my skin. I hope this continues. I know that before, I’ve found that I lose the sense of the benefits after a while - I suppose the body adapts, and it starts to feel like less of an achievement. But I’m prepared for this. Forewarned is forearmed!

Weighed myself this morning. Have gone up. Bah. Probably due to all the stodge I ate last weekend.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:56 pm

Is stodge basically like saying "junk"?
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Larkspur » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:08 am

Kudos on the running!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:30 am

Thanks Larkspur! Auto, yes, stodge is one of my own personal favourite words, implying heavy, calorific food. It can be junk, but not necessarily highly processed. Classic English stodge would be treacle pudding and custard. I’m not sure how many other people use the word, it might just be me and my family! :lol: I also sometimes use it as a verb - to stodge out, Ie. To sit heavily on the sofa and do nothing, while eating. To loaf around. The word ‘stodgy’ is more familiar, but I like stodge itself!!

Rats, I seem to be heavier each time I weigh, at the moment! Have gone up to 147 lb after being 145 for a while. I wonder if this is due to the extra exercise? Have I developed 2lb worth of massive thigh muscles? I doubt it. Never mind. I’m complying with vanilla, so not too worried.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Staff Assistant III » Thu Feb 28, 2019 2:01 pm

lol, i know "stodgy" from watching Great British bake off. Kind of the opposite of delicious . :wink:
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:08 am

Yes indeed Staff, ‘stodgy’ would be when the cake is too heavy or perhaps has a soggy bottom...!

Weight seems to have gone up yet again! Ah well. It’s either all the exercise, doing something with my fluids/muscles, or it’s the result of last weekend’s chocolate. It is what it is...I am not budging from Vanilla. I can’t afford to jeopardise these precious, hard-won habits of no snacking and no sweets on weekdays.

Slightly hesitant to go for a run today as my right foot is hurting from all the unfamiliar pounding it’s been getting. I am keen to habit-build, but worried about causing injury. Might give it a rest today.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:22 pm

That's a good thought working out is causing some fluid retention.

I think you're right-on to focus on habits.

Maybe just go on a walk today instead of a run?
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by margot17 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 4:00 pm

Running even, not just walking! Well done you!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sun Mar 03, 2019 5:25 pm

Thanks, Margot and Auto. I did go for a run! Foot was OK, but the instep does feel quite achey and bruised. I must be careful.

Weight has gone back down. This weekend hasn’t been as excessive as usual (so far....I usually do the most damage on a Sunday evening!) so maybe I’ll be able to make a little downwards progress. But to be honest I feel pretty good at the size I’m at. Maintaining the modest loss I’ve achieved on No S would be a great achievement for me. I lost 10lb in my first ten months or so, and have kept it off since then. That’s more than dieting ever did for me! I dread to think what my weight would be like had I carried on trying to do calorie counting.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by RAWCOOKIE » Sun Mar 03, 2019 5:28 pm

I lost 10lb in my first ten months or so, and have kept it off since then.
about the same for me I think............... like you, I wonder how big I might have become if I hadn't come across No S!

Saturday has historically been my 'most damage' day, but I've changed it to only once every other week now, which seems to have deprogrammed the Saturday habit! This week my 'treat day' was today - Sunday.

Well done with the run. I've been lax over winter, and today we're being battered by Storm Freya winds and I've hunkered down indoors. Tomorrow, tomorrow!
I love Everyday Systems :3

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Imogen Morley » Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:26 pm

Just popping in to say hello. Hope you're still with us!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:22 pm

Hi Imogen! Yes, I’m still here. Thanks so much for popping by. Have had a busy and distracting couple of weeks, with rather a lot of socialising and alcohol. Mostly managed to stay green, but only just. And today, in fact, I’ve just had a fail. Had to go out to DD’s dance show this evening, and for various reasons I got a bit irritated and emotional while we were out. I’d had dinner and wasn’t particularly hungry, but had immense chocolate cravings in the way home, and have just scoffed four truffles, a Mr Kipling cherry bakewell (like a little iced tart thing) and two chocolate biscuits. Probably 600 cals at least, I would say. What a pointless waste of calories!

I still feel a bit emotional and am very touched that Imogen asked if I was still here. Oh no, I’m going to cry!

I haven’t weighed myself for a while. I feel I haven’t made progress on No S for ages, but have just been treading water, managing to keep afloat, mostly beating the occasional cravings, but sometimes caving in, as if I’ve lost a bit of motivation, direction and hope.

It’s funny, but earlier today, I felt very slim and positive. Then I tried on a very old skirt - one that’s been too tight for me for many years, but my mum made it, and I love it, so have kept it at the bottom of the wardrobe. Well it felt tighter than ever before - probably because I haven’t actually tried it on for a whole decade - and my feelings of slimness evaporated. I wonder if this disappointment is at the root of my fail this evening. Realising that I may be lighter than I was two years ago, but I am still a lot heavier than I was aged 30.

Only yesterday, I bought a skirt in a UK size 12, and started thinking that maybe things were shifting again! But feeling slim, just like feeling fat, is entirely subjective. It’s nice to feel slim, but the important thing is, how am I eating? Not how am I feeling! A generously-cut skirt makes me feel slim, a tight one makes me feel fat...it’s all meaningless. The truth is that I have mostly kept to the No S guidelines, but have eaten slightly too much and exercised too little to lose any weight!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by margot17 » Sat Mar 16, 2019 2:47 pm

Oh those cruel old skirts in the bottom of the wardrobe!... Octavia you're such a charming person, I am sure it doesn't matter much if you have a few lb more or less...
I am beginning to feel like I am treading water as well, after a positive first month. Don't really know what to think of it. All the progress I make during the week snaps back during the weekend, and it's not that I do anything crazy. Anyway, just wanted to say hi and that I hope you feel better today.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:48 pm

Ah, thank you so much Margot. Such kind words. I am indeed feeling better today - has a good nights sleep, and it made a big difference. I think sleep is such a key issue for me - not getting enough always leads to struggle and strife. I wish I could be more consistent there.

With No S being such a long-term commitment, l suppose that most of it is just a case of treading water. But these periods of stasis can lead to lack of motivation and a certain loss of discipline. So while I feel I probably need to improve my standards and find moderate, habitual ways of eating a bit less, I don’t seem to have the strength. I’m not sure what the best way to deal with this is...dabbling with the system right now seems risky. Yet just plodding along with maybe one fail day per week is not great!

Anyway, hopefully motivation will return, and maybe I’ll think of a good way to progress. I’m certainly not giving up, because I don’t think there is a better system for controlling habitual overeating.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Mon Mar 18, 2019 3:48 am

This may sound sort of counter-NoS, but ya know, we aren't wired as humans for extremely slow progress. When Reinhard made up NoS, he lost 20-freaking pounds in ONE MONTH. But the women that follow his plan don't have that kind of success.
When I combined NoS rules with some further restrictions that work for me, I lost more than 5 pounds a month for a few months. So honestly, Octavia, you probably need something more than plain Vanilla NoS. Sorry if I sound like a heretic to tell you that.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Imogen Morley » Mon Mar 18, 2019 1:44 pm

I'm with Auto. I hope our honesty won't discourage you.
I adore NoS, I really do. It's a fantastic tool to strengthen your willpower muscle. But for some of us, it may not lead us, weight-wise, where we intend to be. Personal tweaks may become necessary at some point. It doesn't mean that the entire concept of NoS is useless, or that there's something wrong with you. Our bodies are unique. As much as I love this community and its founder, I know that, as a sedentary shortie, I can't allow myself full plates of calorie-dense foods EVER or unrestricted S-days EVER, if I want to get back to my "NoS+mods" weight from 5 years ago. I often rebel against my personal limitations, but that's reality. Denial won't take me anywhere.
You've been practicing vanilla NoS for over a year, am I right? With that much experience under your belt, I think you're fully entitled to consider mods that would suit your lifestyle and your goal weight, if you choose to define one.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon Mar 18, 2019 8:27 pm

Thanks both - this is encouraging to hear, and your honesty is something I value immensely. So hilarious to compare my progress with Reinhard’s! I don’t think I lost ANY weight in the first month! :lol: Imogen, you’re right, I’ve now been doing Vanilla over a year.

I do need to make some changes, though I must beware of using weight loss as my entire motivation. There have to be other reasons too, because my opinion on my weight varies according to the tightness of the skirt I’m wearing. :lol: My real concern is not that I am still fat, as I don’t think I am particularly fat, but that my compulsive eating habits are still very much alive, and spring up every weekend. So I’m still eating in an insane way, and indeed I think my current S days are slightly more mad than my old ‘uncontrolled’ days. It doesn’t take much to override the modest caloric savings of my N days, so obviously I’m not going to lose more weight,which is perhaps not a disaster...but I’m a bit worried I’ll start piling it on and that things may get worse.

I’m being a bit paradoxical/contradictory here, in that weight loss isn’t my main motivation (it never happened reliably enough to motivate me to eat less or eat healthier) and yet, not losing anything is undermining my determination to stay Green.* Perhaps I’ve just seen the limits of the Vanilla system, because I am NOT becoming more naturally moderate at weekends, without further intervention, as I’d hoped. I wonder if that’s a pipe dream for me, a bit like I experienced with Intuitive Eating. And, just like IE, I’m finding that the more freedom I have, the more goodies I want.

* not that I’ve actually weighed myself for a while....hey, maybe I HAVE lost some weight...haha, but as we all know, when you stop weighing, you gain!

I’m confused. Why is it that a focus on weight loss can be harmful - creating a heightened awareness of food and cravings - but at times seems necessary, to motivate us to at least TRY to eat less?

Anyway, I need to sharpen my mind and focus on what’s important to me.
1. Enjoying my meals.
2. Not letting compulsive habits control my diet - to be free to make healthy choices.
3. Not becoming fat and unattractive.

Not necessarily in that order.

If I’m going to become more skilled at controlling my compulsions, for whatever reason, I’m going to have to look at those S days. I think my most harmful weekend habit is snacking, as it has no end and no beginning but is a sort of permanent way of being - so quite a radical move for me would be to shift any treats to meal times. That way I could still look forward to them, but would have to employ some discipline in terms of how I eat them. It might be a good first move.

Auto, that’s an interesting point about humans not being designed to thrive on slow progress. We need feedback, and a sense of achievement. i could certainly do with some of that right now! :)

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:43 am

I dared to weigh myself this morning, and was amazed to see that I’m just one pound heavier than my lightest ever weight on No S! This rather imperfect Vanilla routine I’ve been following has been more effective at keeping my weight down than I thought. I’m really surprised at this, as I was sure I was not being strict enough and would have perhaps relinquished a third to a half of my good progress! (Tbh, this is why I’ve never left a testimonial! I was sure that after my first year ended last November, I was on a slippery slope of failure! But in fact, I can see that the N-day habits have endured quite well despite my imperfection.)

I want to keep weighing regularly now, because I feel that bad things come from stopping this form of monitoring. Assessments of progress become so subjective and mood-dependent. Realising that I have NOT piled on weight since taking my eye off the ball has encouraged me to stick with No S (not that I ever wanted to leave) and perhaps make some mods, tailored to my particular quirks.

Perhaps I can afford to be more motivated by weight loss, now I feel it’s less elusive than I thought. I don’t want to get too hung up on it though, because I know how frustration with lack of results can lead to rebound eating. There has to be another motivation too. For me, that has to be the desire to stop weekend grazing behaviours. Not that I eat CONSTANTLY at weekends, but at any lulls in activity I will ‘top up’ my feeling of wellbeing by grabbing some chocolate, biscuits or crisps. This leads to not enjoying meals, obviously, but also other negative feelings...blood sugar peaks and dips, disappointment as the snack is never as great as one’s anticipation of it, and that other low-key feeling, knowing one is being insanely compelled to compromise one’s own health, figure, and N day efforts. It’s hard to put a finger on why permasnacking causes misery whilst promising relief. It’s a subtle discontent...if it were more blatant then maybe it would be easier to counter. But anyway, I think the best way forward for me is to accept daily weighing, and to impose a weekend mod of No Snacks. Chocolate or biscuits must be eaten as a dessert. Crisps must go at the side of the lunchtime sandwich. A croissant or pastry must be part of breakfast, not elevenses. I hope this results in eating fewer calories overall, but that’s not the main point. The main point is to lose the ‘subtle malaise’ of snacking.

What about the joyful feeling of letting go of ALL control? Perhaps it’s a normal human need, to do that occasionally....well maybe Christmas and Easter will provide ample opportunities.

(Haha! Easily said! :lol: Stop laughing at the back! :wink: )

Well we’ll see how this goes. I think I am ready to try to tackle what’s left of my compulsive eating habits. I know I won’t ever be free of the longing for treat foods, but perhaps I do have the bandwidth required to impose more control at the weekends.

Onwards!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:19 pm

You are so good at summing up our shared human experiences, Octavia! First off, wonderful about the weight being JUST FINE!!! :-) You know I'm a fan of regular weighing. Rip off the bandaid already, ladies. :lol: In your case, you got good news.

And then some of the great comments you made - all of it was great.
It’s hard to put a finger on why permasnacking causes misery whilst promising relief. It’s a subtle discontent...
So true for me!!! Yesterday, although it was actually an N Day, I struggled with some desires to roam and find more food (I was home early from work, by myself, not feeling great, blah, blah, blah). I sat still for a moment and thought -- this is NOT hunger -- this is something else. And I decided I will just have to feel that something else whether I wanted to or not. And that sort of made the something else skitter to its hiding place until dinner. I told myself I looked forward to experiencing some hunger before dinner.
I think the best way forward for me is ...... to impose a weekend mod of No Snacks.
I never have officially done this, but I rarely snack on the weekends. For me, I sort of flipped the mod into an (unspoken?) planning of meals on the weekends. And then knowing that snacking would mean I would not be hungry and not want to spend the time preparing a meal. The stuff I used to "graze" on I typically just make my lunch now. For example, nachos or tortilla chips with salsa or guac or cheese dip. I have apple slices on the weekends with a meal, and man those apple slices taste heavenly to me in a way they didn't before. Lovely.
What about the joyful feeling of letting go of ALL control? Perhaps it’s a normal human need, to do that occasionally....well maybe Christmas and Easter will provide ample opportunities.
Absolutely! Not laughing at the back! We HAVE to have those release valves! I just think we should be fully transparent when that's what we need, and party it up with abandon. For a day. Or an afternoon. Or whatever. But planned and not multiple days etc. BTW, Easter is almost here. :lol: 8)
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:27 pm

Auto, thanks so much for your feedback! I’m glad my plans sound sensible. And it’s great to know that some of my observations also apply to other people, and might be helpful. The idea of having nachos for lunch is exactly what I mean, and yes, these things do take a bit of planning, along with other special S day meals. But planning for these things should be part of the pleasure. It’s sad when we are too tired to plan our S day treats, then end up just randomly scoffing stodge. I think that’s been happening to me recently - too tired and preoccupied to think ahead and shop.

I’ve just had a small N day fail. I had very little sleep last night, and after an insubstantial breakfast I went shopping. I felt a bit off as I parked the car...sort of low in mood and blood pressure. Well I did my shopping, and when I got home, had a controlled snack (two ‘Marmite Breakfast Biscuits’). I do feel a lot better, and I hope I’m not deluding myself here, but I genuinely think I needed some more fuel because my breakfast had been insufficient. Normally I would power through the hunger and maybe have a cappuccino, but what with the sleep deprivation I felt a bit peculiar, and wanted to recover so I could continue with my day.

Powered by the two small biscuit things, I am now planning to go for a run. This could all end badly.... :lol:

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:29 pm

PS have already chosen my Easter egg. It’s the mint Lindor one. I think the combo of milk chocolate and mint flavour is divine! Even better than the classic dark choc and mint. Slurp, drool!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Imogen Morley » Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:45 pm

Ahhhh I adore Lindor pralines! I'm partial to white chocolate-strawberry flavour. Good choice! :twisted:

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:00 am

...the strawberry ones are great, too.... :twisted: and then there’s the coconut...

Just weighed myself and was really delighted that weight is down a little, and in fact I think I’m back to my lowest ever No S weight, give or take half a pound. I’m starting to feel like pushing to lose a bit more - haven’t really tried to achieve anything except general green-ness for a while, so this is quite a positive feeling.

I have been drinking more water over the last few weeks, and having half a lemon squeezed into a cup of water first thing in the morning. These wholesome, ‘women’s magazine’ type habits are very unlike me, but I’ve kept them up because I feel they help my digestion, and now I’m wondering if they have helped to keep my weight stable. They are often recommended by diet gurus. On the other hand, I don’t see how they can magically dissolve calories.

I really like this smiley, but don’t know what it means: 8)
Any clues?

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Soprano » Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:12 pm

8) I use it for cool :P

Jx
Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:33 pm

Yay for your new low! That’s very encouraging!

As for the S days, even after years of doing NoS, my S days never calmed down. Constant grazing just isnt very enjoyable and when ai started Intermittent Fasting, it was a relief to have some limitations on the weekends again. I think your new plan sounds great and will lead to more enjoyment which is supposed to be the point of S days right?

Btw, I hear a lot of positive talk about lemon and acv water. I cant do it because of my reflux but glad you’re enjoying it.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:30 pm

Thanks Linda! I’ve been surprised that the lemon water doesn’t irritate an empty stomach, but it seems to go down fine - though I know acid reflux is a slightly different thing. Very interesting to hear that your S days never calmed down. Do you think there is a slightly IE - like mythology around this? The belief that freedom gives way to moderation? In my experience you need rules to achieve moderation! And i still don’t understand why Reinhard refers to S days as being times when the training wheels of the No S diet come off. It seems to me that the whole bicycle comes off... :lol:

Soprano, thanks for help with the 8) smiley. I hoped it was something like that. :)

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Imogen Morley » Thu Mar 21, 2019 8:03 pm

Whole bicycle! You crack me up :mrgreen: That's certainly how I felt following vanilla NoS for a longer period of time. Who knows, perhaps those of us prone to emotional eating or with a history of diet mentality need a few extra rules to reach their goals?

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Fri Mar 22, 2019 5:50 am

I think for some people S days really do calm down pretty quickly but others like myself need stronger boundaries. I just remember Reinhard saying S days were kind of an after thought at his wife’s suggestion so thats always made me a bit weary of the concept.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Dalia negra » Fri Mar 22, 2019 5:51 am

Imogen Morley wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 8:03 pm
Who knows, perhaps those of us prone to emotional eating or with a history of diet mentality need a few extra rules to reach their goals?


I totally agree.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by margot17 » Fri Mar 22, 2019 8:50 am

S-days seem to be a problem for me as well, they easily undo all the good work of the week. I don't know if the problem will stay or go over time in my case.
Something to keep into account is that full-on S-days keep metabolism from plunging down. You restrict restrict and restrict, at the end you eat like a bird and the weight doesn't budge because metabolism has gone out of the window. That's my biggest fear, because even if I could comply to anything, which I don't as retriction badly backfires on me, I'd hate the idea that the amount of self-sacrifice required may compound. Alternating fasting and feasting was also recommended by Toni Ramos in a podcast I listened to last summer, she was basically saying that the body needs be kept guessing. I don't like particularly that idea, because I prefer to act as if the body was smart, but it is true that some decades ago, when everybody was averagely slimmer, people had some of that up and down going on.
What is funny to me about S-days is that I have never particularly cared for sweets, but now that I can't have them I can't wait for the weekend.
Isn't it screwy?

Octavia I am the last person to know what may work for you, but I like your idea of not snacking in the weekend. I think I will try that too. Actually, if I woke up tomorrow morning finding out it was all a dream and I have actually the best of metabolisms and no dieting is needed, I would still probably make a point to avoid snacking, because I like having that clean mental space between meals, and arriving to my meal hungry. My body feels much better with that structure.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Mar 29, 2019 9:31 am

Really interesting to read these responses to the S day dilemma. Linda, I had forgotten - or maybe never realised - that S days were an idea tagged into No S by Reinhard’s other half. The promise of being able to give up self-control does help during the week (especially during the early days), but as Margot said, it is very easy to undo all one’s good work, and two whole days a week is long enough to keep those bad old habits alive.

I actually didn’t do too well with my mod of shifting snacks/sweets to meal times. One of my very few lifelong decent eating habits has always been to not eat huge quantities at mealtimes (the ‘no seconds’ rule has never been a problem for me). So I found I was making myself feel a bit sick by extending meals with other unhealthy bits and bobs. I didn’t enjoy the treats as much as when they were eaten as snacks, yet still felt compelled to eat them, and ended up feeling bloated and queasy. HOWEVER this did lead to taking in fewer calories altogether, across the weekend, according to my own calculations! Anyway I won’t be carrying on with this mod, but I am still determined to change my weekends. I don’t think my S days will tame themselves without intervention.

I think Reinhard is right though, when he advises dieters to focus on getting the N days right (rather than worry about S days). Because I now have some good habits to compete with my bad habits. I feel I have a fighting chance of making the weekends better (and not ‘come off my bicycle’. Glad that image made you laugh, Imogen! :) )

Anyway, I have actually lost a bit of weight this week, taking my overall No S loss to 11lb! hurrah! :D It could be a blip, though. But I’m very glad I’ve started weighing again, because it means I’m actually engaged with the idea of losing weight, rather than just trying to do No S while passively hoping it will stop me putting more weight on. Thanks to Auto for encouragement in this area. Weighing is such a great reality check, preventing both false confidence (like when your jeans have worn loose) and delusions of failure (like when you try on a tight skirt). I do feel encouraged to stay strict on my N days and be more moderate this weekend. I’ve got a busy working weekend coming up, which is the ideal opportunity to focus on using the S day guidelines in a more sensible way. Using snacks for a helpful boost of energy, and treats as a proper reward, not scoffed gratuitously.

Hey Margot, thanks for mentioning Toni Ramos. I’ll look her up.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by margot17 » Fri Mar 29, 2019 1:40 pm

Hello Octavia, congratulations for the weight loss!
Toni Ramos is the collaborator of Dr. Fung, the one who actually does the work while he messes on youtube - kidding. Anyway, she was talking of fasting, that's what they work with. I don't think she's of any interest to you unless you're interested in fasting. But the concept is still, I think pretty valid, that changing things up and eating sometimes more can be a good thing, for the metabolism. Or maybe not? everybody says everything and its contrary, it's such a mess :lol:

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:33 pm

...yes, so many opinions, so many empty promises! :roll: But that’s why I still do Vanilla, Margot. I’m still amazed at how well it’s worked for me, despite the fact that I still eat quite a lot, and probably too much. Clearly, Vanilla has systemically led me to eat slightly less than I did before. For me, this is a great result.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Sun Mar 31, 2019 2:20 pm

I definitely avoid snacking on S Days and I am glad for it. Makes life better for me. My weekends have sweets but the main thing that is super different about them is that the meals lack nutritional balance, haha. Like not much protein (uh-oh margot!), and mostly carbs, salt, and fat. :roll: Oops. But I relate to this idea of feasting and fasting/famine as a pretty natural body cycle. I think my spirit animal is a bear that likes to eat berries and has a gifted metabolism at packing on weight from March until September. 8)
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by margot17 » Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:26 pm

Lol when you're in that mood auto you just crack me up...

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon Apr 01, 2019 9:21 am

Thanks Auto and Margot! Mixed results this weekend. Saturday was good, and I avoided unnecessary snacking. Ate as healthily as I could, given that I was travelling and going to a restaurant. Sunday was different. Much less healthy, and chocolate got into my mouth in quite large quantities. Washed down with gin and tonic, can you believe? This was while back in the train and chatting with a colleague, both of us exhausted after a busy work project. It was rather lovely, actually. DH has cooked a spaghetti bolognaise when I got home - enjoyed that, too, with a glass of red wine, then had ice cream. I must have taken in huge quantities of calories.

I was still on my new, lower weight when I started the weekend. 10 stone 4 is just a pound heavier than I was at the age of 24 when I went on my first diet - Rosemary Conley’s Hip and Thigh (I’m now 53. Good grief, is it really 29 years since I ate all those baked potatoes, dry-fryed all those onions, and treated myself with her dreaded Bran Cake, indulgently topped with a smear of low fat spread?). If I manage to consolidate the new low weight for a while, that will be great. Hitting 10 stone 3 would be a land mark. Then I can start the Hip and Thigh again... :lol:

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by liveitup » Tue Apr 09, 2019 12:26 am

Congrats on the -11 pounds. Sounds like you have been working hard!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Larkspur » Thu Apr 11, 2019 6:43 pm

I love all the Britishisms on your threat. I had to google Rosemary Conley.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sun Apr 14, 2019 5:52 pm

Thanks for dropping by, Lark and Livitup! Great to hear from you, and glad you enjoy my Britishisms! :)

But don’t be too quick to congratulate me, Livit! In this past fortnight, when I haven’t posted, my good habits have unravelled, big time. The first of those two weeks was very busy, but I stayed more or less green. But then we went on a mini city break last week, and it all went to seed. I find holidays stressful and weird (even though I need them) being cooped up with DH and DD, trying to keep her entertained. I did find ways to enjoy it though, and at first, I stayed green without trouble. But then I started snacking - moderately and lightly at first, like a thin person might snack. Ha! This soon grew into feasting. And for the last five days it’s been like Christmas in my head. I just got stuck on permasnacking and grabbing goodies. Today I woke up feeling certain I was ready to return to common sense, but hey, it’s an S day! I’ve done it again.

I’m worried that I eat more on S days than I used to eat on my bad days. I know that overall I’ve consumed fewer calories over a typical week, otherwise I wouldn’t have lost weight, but I feel a little alarmed at how insanely I sometimes eat at weekends. I worry that the restrictions of N days encourage this behaviour. Has No S been just another diet, resulting in worse eating behaviour for me? This is a scary thought, as I now depend on No S like a religion. Or is this all part of the learning curve? I have to learn to really, really not want these excessive days. To really focus on how horrid it is to dread dinner time, to hate cooking, to have no physical or mental energy. By some miracle I have just got a bolognaise sauce bubbling in the pan ready for when DH gets in. Ugh - i took no pleasure in this. Hopefully I’ll manage a tiny portion with a single noodle of spaghetti. The rest will go in the freezer for another day.

It’s frightening to feel compelled to eat despite one’s better judgement. But on the other hand, I was like this before No S, and I wonder if I am sometimes in denial about being a compulsive eater. I don’t do it to ‘clinical’ levels, but my behaviour is still irrational (ie. today I had a 100g bar of chocolate after a healthy filling lunch. Then after that sweetness I craved salty crisps. Then I was really stuffed, and perhaps would have not worried too much about it had I stopped there. BUT then a bit later I had a cream cake.) I was longing for indulgence! It didn’t help that I came home from work to find the kitchen a tip, DH had gone out without even emptying the dishwasher, and I had to roll up my sleeves and get to work. But that’s life - that’s normality. It’s not an excuse to eat stupidly.

I need to look after myself this week, regain my balance. But the whole of the next month is looking busy, with outings and things. I need solitary time when I can go running, drink plenty of water, remember to weigh myself, and focus on what I want to achieve, instead of just bouncing off the pinball machine of life. It’s a classic case of things being on top of me, rather than me being on top of them. ‘Behind with the laundry and living off chocolate’ is the name of a book I believe. That’s how I feel.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:12 am

Feeling better already. The N day habits have definitely built a strong pathway in my brain, and even after bad S days I have no problem getting back into good behaviour. I do this by focussing on the fact that eating pleasure is set to continue, and I treat myself to favourite things for meals, such as poached eggs, and promise myself that I can have calorific drinks between meals if I need them, with the option of a hot chocolate if I have real indulgence cravings. These are the things I focussed on when I was new to No S. They still help me get back into the groove, acting like a useful ‘bridge’ between my chaotic weekend eating behaviour and green-ness. It’s as if I focus on the fact that both eating styles are pursuing the same goal...pleasure and wellbeing. So I seem able to switch back quite easily.

So, given that I can bring S day qualities into my N days, I wonder if I can bring N day qualities to my S days? Be more integrated? I’ve been musing how the worst thing about mad S days is the behaviour they engender, more than the inner physical and mental feelings. They create inertia and loss of what you might call personal agency... ie. the tendency to do stuff, to pursue goals. This is surely (for me personally) the epitome of hopelessness, unattractiveness and failure! Perhaps a focus on this behavioural aspect will help me in future.

On the other hand, focussing on such grown-up, abstract concepts in the moment is unlikely to counteract my historically-reinforced urges towards chocolate and crisps. This is where I depart from Gillian Riley’s theories - she mistrusts rules and believes in personal choice in the moment - but I think rules are sometimes necessary, as long as you are fully in agreement with their validity. Our primeval urges are powerful, dumb beasts, and fine arguments are no match for them. It would be like debating with a lizard! Rules are, I strongly suspect, needed. Like putting a barrier in front of the lizard to block its progress.

I did try a rule of no snacking at weekends, but adding treats to my meals didn’t work for me. But one thing that did help recently was the weekend I made a delicious chocolate cake. Although it was a treat worthy of craving, it was not a treat/snack I could binge on or eat ‘continuously’. This is a bit like a return to my old experiment of avoiding ‘class A’ treats (the ones that really spark off bingeing). It’s more nuanced, though. The cake is not quite the same as eating any old sugary processed rubbish. The cake contains some goodness and is much more delicious and rewarding. So perhaps my rule should be once again to avoid the Class A treats - the ‘cyclic’ snacks that have no end - but to replace them mindfully, not randomly.

Isn’t it annoying how much time one must spend figuring out these things? I have wasted the last couple of hours on my theorising. I could have been out on a run! And I very much don’t want to over-complicate No S, spinning my wheels and pretending I’m making progress when I’m just sitting in bed failing to lose weight!!! :lol: But I seem to have a way forward: to bake a cake for the weekends, and to rule out ‘cyclic’ treats/snacks.

Though of course, next weekend is Easter! And I have promised myself a mint Lindor egg. 8)

(It’s funny, too, how my overall paradigm here is ‘I must have treats one way or another’. Maybe in the more distant future I can address that.)

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Thu Apr 18, 2019 3:36 am

Lots of great musings here, as usual. :-) I sure like the way you think, Octavia.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by nettee » Thu Apr 18, 2019 6:14 am

Hello Octavia, I have been catching up on some of your recent posts as I am just restarting. Well done for sticking at it. Your S day issues sound very familiar to me. I am quite nervous about Easter weekend coming up as I used to have some crazy S days. At the end of my last long attempt I started having just one S day a week which was working ok. I also tried no sweets ever and a limit of 5 Ss per S day.

Great to see a fellow Brit here. What are your plans for the running? I am working on getting back into that too.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Apr 23, 2019 8:44 am

Hi Auto and Nettee. Great to hear from you both! Wondering how your Easter went, Nettee - or indeed, maybe it’s still going! I ate my Lindor egg over Sunday and Monday, but didn’t enjoy it as much as I’d hoped. It felt gratuitous, and the things I wrote in my last post felt true: the free eating of treats seems to take away my volition, and affect my mood quite severely. A sort of sugar poisoning. I suspect, tentatively, that I am noticing this reaction more and more...and that maybe I will soon be able to decide for myself that the sugar isn’t worth it. I feel as though excessive treating is a superhighway in my brain, and a team of workmen is busy building this new exit/road, but it isn’t quite ready yet. There are still cones and diggers in the way, and my car is still forced to continue down the M1 of Excess.

My plans for running: well, I have to go more regularly. Life just keeps getting in the way. In fact I have no expectations to improve my speed or stamina as yet - I need to improve my regularity! Three times a week is my goal. Yesterday I had a depressing fail, when I went to my usual route only to find that dawdling families were everywhere, it was too hot, and I only managed about 7’ running and a bit of very grumpy walking. I came home and cried because I am so rubbish.

For me, life seems to be a big lesson in humility. My habits of sloth and over-treating* are like stalagmites and must be worn away a drip at a time, over the course of millennia. But progress is being made. I will never be a non-exerciser again, and N day habits are here to stay, even though the bad old habits still exist side by side with the good new ones.

After a few bad days, I need to take Auto’s advice, ‘rip off that band-aid’ as she puts it, and hop on the scales again. I lack focus and strictness when I’m not weighing. Though seeing a high weight can prompt a WTH reaction. I must do it, though.

*i don’t overeat healthy foods or meals, just S day treats.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:49 am

I’ve just been reading Auto’s 5 year testimonial, and was somewhat comforted to read how it took her 5 years to start adjusting the contents of her plate. I too feel that I need to make more changes, but I’m just not ready. Actually, this is one reason I am a big fan of the writer and scientist, Loretta Graziano Breuning. She explains just how hard it is to change our habits, and she uses the metaphor of the superhighway. Those old mental roads were formed in our youth, when there was lots of the stuff called myelin around to smooth and reinforce the way. Like water in a flood, electricity races down those paths faster than you can say chocolate eclair...and happy hormones such as dopamine cheer it along. In comparison, the new, healthy, adult-determined mental paths are like little indentations in tangled scrubland. Constant repetition is needed, and strictness.

Not sure where this leaves me right now. Absolute strictness in any eating-related field seems unrealistic and even a bit neurotic. Maybe that’s an attitude problem I have, and a paradigm shift is needed.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Apr 23, 2019 1:33 pm

After my depressing running fail yesterday, I decided to go again today, to try to erase that memory. I told myself I’d do exactly the same as yesterday - just 7’ running and 7’ walking - but do it cheerfully, intentionally. So I did. I felt more energetic at the outset, but quickly realised it was just as hot as yesterday, and ran out of steam in exactly the same way. Part of me was hoping I’d be able to do more, I suppose. So I felt defeated again and slightly bewildered. When I started this recent phase of running back in February, I did four times this amount! I guess it’s the heat.

Anyway, I’m happy to report that even this small amount of exercise has made me feel better in some intangible way! That nice, calm energy. Perhaps I’ll do this ridiculous mini-failure-run again tomorrow! :)

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:39 pm

I love your mini-fail-run. Last fall when HappyHerder was recovering from his illness, I started my walk/jog idea - just to totally go at his pace. And I've got to say, I love that form of exercise. It is so natural for the body, whereas running without stopping seems kind of stressful for me. :mrgreen: Nice rationalization for me, right? Anyway, I'm all about moving as gently (or vigorously) as we feel like. Moderate exercise is soothing to my soul - more vigorous tends to kick me into a hyper-living gear that my particular temperament doesn't thrive on. Maybe if I was naturally more laid-back, but I think meditation is more what I need to work on that sweating more, lol.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sat Apr 27, 2019 1:57 pm

Thanks, Auto! I did the mini-fail-run a few more times this week, and was amazed at how good I felt afterwards. Yes, non-stop running feels stressful to me, too - I don’t like the way it jogs my brain about (or so it feels) and it just feels unnatural. If I may refer to Loretta G. Breuning again, she points out that we shouldn’t go in search of an ‘endorphin high’. Endorphin is intended for emergency only, to mask the pain of injury while the animal gets itself to safety. It was not meant to be brought on purposefully.

This is important for me to realise, I think, because I still find myself wishing I could run hard and fast and long enough to impact my weight. That’s neither realistic nor healthy for me. The real benefit of running is to work myself just hard enough to feel a pleasant release of tension afterwards. Then I am so much better at focussing on projects; I’m less inert, so more energetic.

Food wise, I’ve not had a good week at all. I think I’ve managed about two green days. Easter, and chocolate being everywhere, led me to several small binges. By Friday night I was wondering if No S has stopped working for me. Have I really formed new habits or am I just following rules? Rules that are so easily overturned? I asked myself, if I officially gave up No S, would any of the habits stay with me as a matter of personal choice (to use that Gillian Riley tenet)? At first I though yes, of course they would - waiting for meals instead of snacking would surely stay with me; it surely is a true habit. Then I thought, is that the case at weekends, then? When I lift the rules on S days, do the good habits still prevail? Er....not much.

Perhaps the truth is that while the N day rules have indeed become habits for me, the old habits still exist to undermine and reverse them. I’m just in this fragile balance of the old and the new. I’m not giving up though. If I were truly strong enough to live by my own intelligent choices (as opposed to my lower brain’s food addictions) then I would say to myself, ‘hey, let’s just avoid snacks and save treats for the weekend.’. That really would be my preferred way of eating. So No S is NOT just a set of rules imposed from outside. It’s my personal choice. It fits in with the structures of the society in which I must live, and it offers the almost-instant reward of greater enjoyment of meals. It’s just that when addictive foods are ‘in my face’ then I don’t have access to my intelligence! Actually, there was one night this week when I used my higher reasoning to resist some delicious chocolate in the fridge. It was very hard to do...sort of floating by, knowing this stuff was there. My mouth was literally watering. As I went to bed I thought, ‘see, nothing bad happens when you don’t eat it! You don’t lose out in any shape or form!’ But the next night, I couldn’t do it again - I ate the chocolate. I was hoping the heroic ‘acceptance’ of the craving on that first night would rewire my brain. But it doesn’t work like that. The situation required more powers of acceptance, more suppression of the animal urge, than I had.

So I’ve learned to keep chocolate out of the house. Amazing insight, there! :roll: Even now, I’m feeling a bit off colour today and planning to have a moderate weekend. But at some point my brain will flip and all the clever thinking in the world will not help. I will just need to ensure that there isn’t any chocolate for me to binge on.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Sat Apr 27, 2019 2:09 pm

As I read your post, I kept thinking how your struggle with food is similar to my struggle with alcohol. I'm starting to think that many people on NoS (or any diet, for that matter) really do have food addictions. For some (amazingingly lucky) reason, I do not have that struggle. Don't get me wrong, I have to practice self-control with my eating, but it is not a cycle of guilt, or feeling bad about my eating. But I do struggle with alcohol. And so every morning I wake up certain I won't drink that night, and many times by afternoon, I've rationalized my way into having wine that night. Then the next day I feel so guilty and think I'll finally change.
I think that might be going on in your head about the chocolate? But I'm not sure.

When Linda said she's going to get some professional help, it really jarred me. Like some of our issues with food are bigger than NoS.

I think I should stop and move this pondering to my thread. Your post (like all of yours, Octavia) really got me thinking, and I need to put some of this into writing.

Anyway, I do recommend you throw out all the damn chocolate. :-)
Month/Year-BMI
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sat Apr 27, 2019 6:34 pm

Thanks Auto. Have left a rambler on your thread about this stuff....

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:21 pm

I’ve forgotten the mottos that used to help me: Oolala said ‘I’ll feel better if I stick to my plan.’. That one often did the trick. It’s like a switch or a key; sometimes the words do get through to that other bit of the brain. Maybe the future tense thing in that motto is significant. Imagining future guilt helps.

What else helps, in these difficult times? Reading the ‘why did you leave...’ thread. It reminds me how we all find our way back here. And how we all have difficulties.

Maybe doing a sort of Gillian Riley ‘Times and Plans’ would help keep the focus on meals: at every meal, start consciously planning the next one. This takes bandwidth, of course. But it puts the focus in the right place. And it’s something I haven’t tried so far, on No S. (When I read Gillian’s books, the context of the Times and Plans was too vague, self-regulating and permissive. I never got anywhere.)

I’ve been wondering if I should also notice and acknowledge the many moments when cravings aren’t there - similar to Dr Claire Weekes’s anti-anxiety method of ‘glimpsing’.

Adjust my environment as much as possible - ie. stock up on favourite healthy foods and get rid of treats.

I will think of some more tomorrow.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:58 pm

I’m really liking the idea of adding Gillian Riley’s Times and Plans to No S. Just to take a moment to think ahead and work out what and when I will eat next. If I don’t do this, I’m liable to get to the end of the day without having my minimum 5 fruit/veg, and my S day snacks will be more impulsive. But the main reason I like the idea is that it keeps me focussed on meals, and on my true intentions.

I’ll have to build up this planning behaviour into a habit. I know this won’t be easy, despite its simplicity.

I’m also wondering about trying to eliminate sweets throughout the month of May. I feel I’ve been just dancing round the real issue up to now, which is that my health and weight are undermined by overeating sweets (chocolate and desserts). Nothing else really. I try to limit them and sometimes succeed, but there’s this underlying attitude that I must have them, and that S days are 48 hours worth of opportunities that must not be wasted. I think I’m ready to face this belief, and show myself that I am not truly compelled to have sweets.

I would never try to rule them out for ever, but I need to go for a period longer than 5 days. And I need to learn to do S days in a different way.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:26 pm

I super support your idea to plan your meals. I plan all our dinners for the week (it doesn't always go according to plan but is still wonderfully helpful to staying on track with NoS). Every morning I plan my meals for the day (well, I guess I don't really eat breakfast on N Days and my lunch is always the same - ha!!! Cheater easy!!)
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon Apr 29, 2019 10:26 am

Hi Auto! That’s a great idea, having the same thing for one of your meals. I noticed from your thread that you did that! I too could do it: just bung an egg on a bit of toast. The absence of decision-making means that precious willpower is conserved for other issues! :)

Every weekend that goes by, I become more aware of the detrimental effects of my historic ‘feed on demand’ habit. Yesterday, even though I thought I’d been more moderate than usual, I ate dinner without being truly hungry, and ended up with queasy indigestion and a pounding heart. It was a bit scary. This morning, I’m thanking my body for not having an actual heart attack, and realising that I can no longer override its boundaries with impunity. I know epiphanies are cheap, but I do suspect that a proper, internalised aversion to over-treating (as I call it) is setting in.

After a fairly unsuccessful month on No S, I feel I’ve perhaps made my way to a new phase. This morning, I read back through my thread, and it made me realise how it’s still relatively early days for me, just one and a half years: no time to throw in the towel. It’s been a great learning process, laying bare a lot of my physical and mental challenges, realising more and more how over-treating lies at the heart of many of my troubles. The rare, upbeat and calm feeling I get when I’m eating well and exercising: that’s what I need all the time, in order to get through even an average day. This feeling can’t be regarded as a special rarity. I have to do everything I can to elicit this feeling of wellbeing, every day of my life. Otherwise I am struggling through life, trying my best to be cheerful and productive while facing unpredictable bouts of malaise and anxiety (which always seem to come from nowhere, but I’m sure are linked to unstable blood sugar and poor sleep).

I’ve written longer posts this month and have been journaling a lot, which isn’t a particularly good sign, but speaks of struggling and internal wrangling. I want my head to go quiet again, with no conflicts surrounding eating (or exercising for that matter). I want a conflict-free May! I’m returning to Habitcal and planning to track my success on a sweet-free month. Such a shame I accidentally deleted all my old Habitcals, not that I looked back through them much, but it’s put me off starting again!

I’m missing Linda.

HURRAH! She has posted!

I feel tearful, oh dear!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:00 am

Awwwwwwww you are such a gem to have missed me. 💗

It does take us awhile to realize how much better we feel with our moderate, sensible habits in place, doesn't it? And it seems we may have to keep re-learning that too, if you’re anything like me that is.

Im starting habitcal too and really want to shoot for 21 days straight (including weekends). Im just so tired of the bad feelings of overindulging (my heart races too when i overdo it). I just don't see any benefits to having days off anymore when it only leads to misery.

Anyway, looking forward to following your continued journey & thanks again for all your amazing kindness. 💗
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Apr 30, 2019 3:33 pm

...sounds like we are doing similar things, Linda. I am cutting sweets from my weekends for the month of May, and intending to take real care not to lose my eating inhibitions in any way. It always leads to something bad. I need to find out if my eating really is at the heart of so many daily ups and downs. No S has made me more sensitive to overeating, I’m sure. Looking back over my thread, it’s rare that I’ve had a trouble-free weekend. There’s always been an unexpected mood swing, a bout of nausea, a bad night, extreme fatigue, something or other. I also need to demonstrate to myself that it is possible, and not a ridiculous dream, to not use food as mood-enhancing treats.

My weight is currently 10 stone 8, so a few pounds heavier than last month, and I can see clearly how Easter has derailed me, just as Christmas did. Holidays, too, do the same: it starts with small, ‘perfectly reasonable’ snacks and just goes downhill from there. I have to say though, I’m grateful to still be half a stone lighter than I was for the few years prior to starting No S, and I’m aware that the basics of No S are still helping, despite my imperfect compliance. And right now, I’m enjoying the feeling of being safely back in green N days. I feel happily compliant and my mind is quieter. If I fail this weekend though, my mind will not be quiet!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Fri May 03, 2019 1:40 am

I feel happily compliant and my mind is quieter.
8) Yay!
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sat May 04, 2019 7:51 pm

Thanks for the cheer, Auto!
Having a good Saturday. No chocolate - though I forgot I was intending to cut out all sweets and I’ve had a few plain biscuits and small ice cream. But have not gone mad. I actually enjoyed my dinner - made roast chicken. I wonder if I’ve reached that stage where people naturally start having more moderate S days? I mean, on the surface it seems like I’ve instigated a Mod to prevent bingeing, but I am motivated by wanting to avoid feeling overstuffed and unwell, so it’s all happening naturally/organically. Even when I had the plain biscuits this afternoon, I quickly had that warning feeling, that I was on the way to feeling yucky and not being able to eat my dinner. It’s not been difficult to control myself - the fear of feeling unwell (or simply uncomfortable) is much stronger now, more direct.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Sat May 04, 2019 11:14 pm

That is an interesting stage, where your unconscious mind and your conscious mind are more in alignment on portions, you know? Oolala always tells us that the changes come when we are motivated to avoid feeling a certain way later.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Sun May 05, 2019 2:07 pm

Yes!!! That’s exactly how I am feeling - motivated to avoid feeling bad later. I don’t mean bad as in ‘a bit guilty’, but highly uncomfortable/queasy and worried about what was going on in my body as it tried to deal with all the heavy processed foods. Also worried about letting people down by not being able to eat nice meals they had cooked or were paying for. As I’ve journeyed through No S, these feelings have become stronger and more frequent.

Maybe I have reached Oolala’s Point of Change! :)

Hope your own changes are going well, Auto.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by oolala53 » Tue May 07, 2019 11:56 pm

I wish I could promise you it will all just fall into place and you will sail into your eating future on smooth seas. It COULD happen! but even if it doesn't, what's the alternative, really?

I've just come through a disturbing time in which I was perfectly willing to grossly overeat and put up with discomfort later. At least for now, I'm tired of it. Just thinking of some foods makes me flash on an image of the Wicked Witch of the West trying to touch the ruby slippers. Electric shock! I've committed to certain limits for a time period. I had done this recently with decent results, although there was some backlash eating. But I think I've learned something.

In any case, there's only before and during!
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Fri May 10, 2019 3:29 pm

Octavia: thats really awesome! That’s exactly what my therapist is having me focus on. How the food i eat and exercise i do makes me feel because that is the best long term motivator. Im suppose to write down how i feel before I eat and 20 mins afterwards. Seems to help!

Gl with your journey!
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon May 13, 2019 8:24 am

Thanks for the encouragement, Oolala and Linda. I really need to check in here more often. It is supposed to be a daily check in, after all

The second half of the week didn’t go so well. I had one of my bouts of mild tummy trouble, and it made me (as it always does) subdued and low. I’m almost laughing at the ‘new research’ that the gut influences the brain as well as vice versa - it’s always been entirely obvious to me: my anxiety troubles started after a bout of gastroenteritis in my teens. Anyway, for three days I felt quite depressed, then on Friday I found myself deciding to have some chocolate. I can’t tell you how much better I felt. The colour returned to my cheeks and I felt less wan. My ‘no-sweets during May’ challenge felt like it was making my diet lop-sided. Like hopping along on one leg. Anyway, the truth of it was probably that I wasn’t eating enough and had low blood sugar, so of course the chocolate made me feel better. But I decided to end the challenge, admit defeat. This weekend I was back to normal S days, and it was funny to see how quickly my new, more appreciative consumption of this brown ‘wonder tonic’ started to feel gratuitous and compulsive once more.

So, Monday is here, and after this little adventure, I’m back to Vanilla! And I’m not sure I have actually learned to fear overeating chocolate. This weekend I felt great after overeating chocolate and there have been no ill effects whatsoever. If only it was as simple as cause-and-effect!

The witch image is a good one, Oolala. That idea of an electric shock...I might try it if chocolate cravings come this week. Linda, looking forward to hearing how this 20-minute check-in goes.

One interesting thing recently is that while I have been feeling fed up with No S and like I’ve had enough of it, (the constant drip-drip-drip of willpower coupled with frequent failure and slow results) I do keep on returning to the idea that even if I gave up, I’d intuitively continue with it! I do need to ‘own’ it and not just feel I’m following rules. That’s where I am right now. Sort of rejecting the rules while realising that they have become my own true opinions.

I am, however, questioning the idea of always going without snacks. I still find it hard to eat a large enough breakfast to get me through more than, say, three and a half hours. I’m rebelling against the feelings of emptiness and discomfort I experience on long mornings. And yet I’m also considering the fact that I probably need to simply endure hunger. Sometimes I’m distracted and do OK, other times it feels like an insane imposition of suffering upon oneself! :lol: Sometimes I can delay breakfast in order to deal with this, but other times not.

My own bad eating habits are mainly using food (esp. sweets) as treats, and random snacking where you don’t know how much you’re consuming. Perhaps I need a version of No S that tackles these two things without forcing me to feel hungry and weak. What would a sane person say? They’d say ‘go without a snack if you can’ and ‘save sweet treats for the weekend’. Duh! It’s so obvious. And yet, the slightly more contrived rules and boundaries of No S are necessary to protect/establish the fledgeling habits. Without the idea of rules, it’s almost impossible to get started - as I found with Gillian’s Riley’s method. But perhaps the time has come when I need to use a slightly different, less rule-like formula.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri May 17, 2019 2:52 pm

Octavia wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 8:24 am
So, Monday is here, and after this little adventure, I’m back to Vanilla! And I’m not sure I have actually learned to fear overeating chocolate. This weekend I felt great after overeating chocolate and there have been no ill effects whatsoever. If only it was as simple as cause-and-effect!
HAHAHAHA! Well I got my comeuppance. I had another annoying digestive disturbance this week, again making me feel very out of sorts. I'm starting to realise that I simply cannot get away with overeating chocolate, or any treat food, or possibly any food whatsoever, without experiencing ill effects - though often, not until two days later. The No S rhythm, of going without treats for 5 days, has meant that I have lost my "immunity" to processed foods. No S has re-sensitised me. I have come to the annoying conclusion that rather than clinging to the No S rules, bending them around my addiction to chocolate, I actually have to JUST EAT SENSIBLY, day in, day out. So this week, I have done just that. I have even broken a couple of No S rules when my common sense told me to (eg. after drinking wine one day at lunchtime, and having a very light lunch with it, I had porridge/oatmeal as an afternoon snack). Have I achieved the holy grail of Intuitive Eating? That's how it feels! But make no mistake, I am sticking to No S rules most of the time. Anyway, this week I feel I have really crossed some sort of threshold, and I no longer want to dabble with my digestion. There can be no more crazy, indulgent eating.

I do feel that N day rules and alcohol don't go together well for me. Since I started No S I have often gone out for 2 or 3 glasses of wine one night a week, and have come back home and eaten nothing. This is after having a light dinner 6 hours previously. Well recently I've been feeling that I need an evening snack on these nights. If I want to go without an evening snack, then I can't afford to drink. It's like the overeating chocolate thing: it may be technically "allowed" on No S, but it doesn't work for my body. Again, though, I couldn't have progressed straight to this point, I had to go through 18 months of No S habits, to gain any sort of control. I just feel I'm in a slightly different place. I hope it turns out to be a good, permanent place! Not just another empty "epiphany"...fingers crossed.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue May 21, 2019 12:50 pm

...oh dear, we had a party this weekend and the house was left groaning in wine, chocolate, pate and cheese. Although I was moderate at the party itself, on Sunday when I was very tired, I found myself picking at the bits. And worse, on Monday evening I cracked and ate loads of junk. This morning I have had the most awful stomach upset. I was not actually sick, but very close to it, and was in an appalling cold sweat. I needed DH to sit with me and I could barely hold myself up. It was a bit frightening.

It’s interesting how willpower leaks away. I resisted the processed goodies on Saturday night, but rather than making me stronger, this made me weaker! And I had a bit less willpower on Sunday and less still on Monday. Even after figuring out that I can’t afford to be too indulgent on S days, I am still prone to compulsive eating and have limited willpower if these foods are in the house. Had I thrown it all away, I don’t think I would have had any trouble having a green Monday.

I don’t think I’ve had a bug, because I wasn’t actually sick. I think it was some sort of blood sugar crash, similar to a hangover. I went back to bed and slept for three hours, and now I’m just feeling a bit low. Learning once again that I need to throw away party food as it is addictive for me.

Onwards....

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue May 21, 2019 1:14 pm

...just to clarify, and this is for my future self to read, my Monday evening binge consisted of one glass of rose wine, two handfuls of Twiglets, a handful of Pringles, and across the course of the evening, about 8 chocolates from a very luxurious selection.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Tue May 21, 2019 10:56 pm

Octavia, have you had a chance to get your blood sugar checked? I think a glucose tolerance test, although not fun, is in order for you. I also think a fasting glucose would be worthwhile but what you really want to see at this point is what is going on with your body when you give it a big sugar load - and a glucose tolerance test is what that is for.

If you'd rather do it yourself, like I do, just buy a cheap blood sugar monitor (maybe 20 pounds) and track every 30 minutes after a meal for up to 2 hours.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Thu May 23, 2019 10:02 pm

That sounds sensible, Auto. I haven’t had my blood sugars checked for a few years. Thanks for that.
I’ve spent the last few days trying to look after myself better, stay hydrated and just eat normally. I’ve not been perfectly green, but have been moderate and have drunk lots of water and herbal tea. I want to get into more of an even keel, without having so many ups and downs, physically and emotionally (though with me, it’s hard to tell one from the other).

But although I’ve been quite concerned with my eating/drinking/digestive habits, I don’t want to become obsessed, second-guessing everything I eat etc.. I do feel slightly obsessed right now. I want to turn my focus outwards again and have more fun!

Weight is up a couple of pounds from my best No S weight. It’s funny how I waver between caring and not caring. Since my health focus (after my recent mini-crisis) I have become less strict on No S, allowing the occasional snack when I’m really hungry...but that is of course a slippery slope. All things considered, I still think vanilla is the way to go.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri May 24, 2019 8:44 pm

Weight down again today. Felt pretty good most of the day, and ate very moderately, but dinner was delayed and I found myself going mad with hunger. Sadly I ate a few bread sticks as a snack. I am finding it very hard to stick to the no-snacking rule at the moment! It’s still a guiding principle for me, but I’m finding that I rebel against being really hungry and drained, as I was tonight. I still feel I’m working towards a lasting, personal interpretation of No S, something that really works for me, that feels like my own true choices. As if I am preparing to leave the nest, or ‘take the training wheels off’. I actually think it makes more sense, for me personally, to be more strict about sweets and treats at the weekend, and less strict about having the occasional healthy snack when hungry on a busy N day. The trouble is, that sort of behaviour is not habit-forming and requires intuition: an unreliable commodity!

But I’m thinking more about this. I feel like my strict training period is over: I have been successfully No S-brainwashed, and the idea of ‘just eating sensibly’ is finally a possibility. For me that means avoid snacking wherever possible, and eat minimal treats (weekends only). Pre-No S, I’d have had no hope of doing this!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Jun 25, 2019 9:16 am

Checking in after a long and unpleasant hiatus. I can’t say too much on our public forum, but I had a car accident which was very dramatic and yet no one was hurt. Wish I could say more. I have been getting over it, trying to immerse myself in everyday life and endure the nightmare of what might have happened.

For a while, I couldn’t eat proper meals, so existed on snacks...then had a phase of eating treats...then things settled down a little. Weight has stayed miraculously stable! I do want to get back to more self-discipline now, before the habits of the last year and a half are undermined.

Breakfast today has been a couple of slices of fruit toast with a bit of cheese and some strawberries. Plus my usual coffee with a splash of milk.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Candace » Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:18 pm

I am very glad no one was hurt. Best of luck in recovering from what has certainly been a harrowing experience.

I can also totally relate to the thought that being more strict with sweets and snacks on S days, and less strict with healthy snacks on N days. I'm new to No-S though, so I'm trying to form the good habits before testing the boundaries with changes. It's too easy to slip back into the "healthy snacks shouldn't be limited" attitude I had before, which I think may not have been serving me well. However, at some time, "taking the training wheels off" may make sense if I can formulate a new rule that works for me.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Tue Jun 25, 2019 3:00 pm

That’s the thing, Candace...snacking is habit forming, and so hard to limit, once you start. Even now, it’s a couple of hours before dinner time and I’m quite hungry. Definitely tempted to get a healthy snack. Actually I do have a Mod where I allow an apple in the afternoon! I definitely allow calorific drinks though, and they are what enabled me to get into the No S lifestyle back in the early days. I found that the liquid calories never equalled the total of the ‘healthy’ solid snacks! And they helped train me to go without.

Right, I’m going to get an apple...

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Wed Jun 26, 2019 2:22 pm

Well, Octavia - I am so sorry for the difficult mental anguish you have been going through. Sounds like your anxiety has been through the roof. I will say your post is like a mystery to me -- I'm playing through many scenarios of car accidents where no one is hurt but your dread of what could have happened... anyway, I have an excellent imagination and I'm getting freaked out just thinking of what you may have been going through.

Thanks for coming by my check-in. It's been so quiet on the boards.

If you liked the excerpt on my check-in, I think you might be game for a few other books (all out there, in a way, but also so spot on at times I catch my breath):
REAL by Clare Dimond (I just finished this one yesterday).
The Little Book of Big Change, also by Amy Johnson. I haven't read this one yet, but I am going to soon (I have to pay for this one - it's not on Kindle Unlimited). It's all about habit change using the same life principles as Being Human, Real, and Ease (Ease is by Clare Dimond, and it's about applying the principles to work. Also haven't read that one, but it's next and I have it downloaded on my kindle already).

Love you, Octavia. You are a bright and shining light on this forum and I'm sure even so much more to your family, friends, and co-workers. Your daughter is blessed to have you as her mum, and we are all blessed here to experience your humor, wisdom, and kindness. Take care.
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Larkspur » Wed Jun 26, 2019 6:43 pm

Glad you're okay and starting to recover from the experience. Glad to see you back!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:45 am

Big *hugs* 💜
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by RAWCOOKIE » Thu Jun 27, 2019 7:33 am

Hi Octavia

I've not been checking in here for some time - just came over to say 'hi!'

An apple 'mod' seems a good emergency measure - but, as you said, it can become a habit. The apple itself isn't a problem. The problem, to my mind, comes when you can't go out without an apple in your bag 'in case I get hungry'. I used to always have snacks in my bag - I always ate them!
I love Everyday Systems :3

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Mon Jul 01, 2019 11:28 am

Hi all,
Thanks so much for these kind replies...I’m thinking now that I should have posted immediately I’d had the car accident, because I felt so alone. I could have used all your wonderful support. I was away from home for a work thing at the time, and couldn’t come back to DH and DD for a while. I never told the rest of my family, as I thought they would freak out and say unhelpful things. I had supportive colleagues around me, at least. Perhaps I was afraid of losing my anonymity by talking here about what had happened. Oddly enough, being an anxiety sufferer helped me cope! I am so familiar with my body’s reaction to stress...my emotions, too - I’ve practiced overcoming these feelings and accepting any unpleasant inner turmoil since my teens, so have been ‘weaving my parachute’ for many years, to use that old hippie phrase. It served me well. Everyone around me was waiting for me to break down, but oh no! Octavia does not break down! (Apart from the initial moments of total hysteria!!!) :)

Anyway...as you see, I haven’t been too active here on the boards! But miraculously my weight has stayed stable, despite not pressurising myself to comply with No S. Quite a lot of random snacking has gone on this last month. I’ve never really lost my commitment to No S, though. I think I’ve just needed my willpower for other things. In fact I’m thinking that I could do with setting a goal. I would love to lose three pounds. I know that seems rather pathetic, but I’m in a real plateau right now, and I’m aware that to lose any more weight, substantial changes must be made.

Rawcookie - great to hear from you - your comment reminded me of one of my favourite Reinhard sayings: ‘nothing is in itself’. ie. the apple is harmless in itself, but it is also snack, an act of eating, and this is habit-forming.

Linda - thanks for your hugs! A big hug back to you, too. ❤️

Larkspur - ahhh! Thank you. It is nice to be back. And I’m wondering if a proper daily check in (after all, that’s what this is supposed to be!) might help me with my aim to get some progress going again.

Auto - so touched by what you said. :) I’m certainly going through a phase of wanting to read more self-help - it seems to me that we’re in a new phase of more insightful books right now. I’ve read loads (of the old generation books) in the past and I think some basic principles do stick - just understanding how our thoughts affect our emotions has been enormously beneficial. But recently (it seems to me on casual observation!) there have been better books by people who are perhaps more scientific, qualified, yet able to channel their research into an accessible system that others can use. Clare Dimond is a new name to me, and I’m definitely going to look her up. Amy Johnson, too.

The other day I got one of my old books down from the shelf - one I’ve been tempted to throw away many times, as it never helped me, yet is regarded as a classic: Women Who Think Too Much. (By Susan Nolen Hoeksema - I think that’s her name...am in bed and can’t be bothered to get out to check...) I leafed through it and once again thought ‘this is not very helpful’. I’d be really interested to know what others think, if they’ve read it. It seems to me to be a bit of an academic thesis, with little real scientific backing in terms of how the brain works, or much deep psychological insight (just reading a couple of paragraphs from an expert on Mindfulness seems to me more transformative than this book). The case studies seem very simplistic, with examples of women who learn to change their behaviour after having a single insight. Anyway, if any of you guys have read it, do share your views! I want to know if I’ve missed something.

I’d better go. Had a bad night, couldn’t settle, ended up taking an antihistamine tablet to zonk me out, and sure enough, it is now lunchtime and I am still in bed... :oops:

automatedeating
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Mon Jul 01, 2019 2:11 pm

Hi Octavia! I will check out that book "Women who think too much". I've heard of it but never read it.
Also, the books I've personally been reading by Clare Dimond are totally not scientific. They are the most new-agey stuff I've ever read, lol. But I'm getting something out of them, so that works for me right now.
Month/Year-BMI
8/13-26.3; 8/14-24.5; 5/15-26.2; 1/16-26.9; 9/16-25.6; 8/17-25.8; 11/17-26.9; 3/18-25.6; 8/18-24.5; 10/18-23.8; 1/19-23.4; 2/19-22.7; 3/19-22.1

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Octavia
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:45 pm

Hi Auto - I definitely think New Age stuff is valid and useful. The book I mentioned on overthinking seemed to me to have neither the inspirational quality of a New Age text nor the insight of a scientific book. I’m going to check out Clare Dimond right now!

By some miracle, my weight has gone down a smidgeon, taking me back to my lowest ever No S weight of 144 lb. Hurrah! I haven’t made any progress beyond this figure for about a year- though of course, just managing to hover around this point for all those months is (for me) pretty extraordinary. But I feel ready to press on a bit now and try to tweak my eating habits further. (Isn’t it funny how gradual/slow we have to be on No S? Well, on any habit-changing regime, really. It’s something I’m very grateful to have learnt.)

My three meals a day have been a balance between what I want, what I feel I need health-wise, and what’s convenient for the family. I haven’t pressured myself to cook particular dinners - whatever was in the fridge, whatever DH was cooking, or DD fancied, that’s what I’ve had. I didn’t want to waste my willpower on making life harder for myself in that respect.

Well this week I’ve decided that I am willing to cook myself a different dinner - a really simple protein-plus-veg combo. If they want pasta or rice or noodles, they can have it, but I’m having my lower-calorie, lower-carb option. I like the idea of having roughly the same thing every day - it means I don’t have to make decisions. Though I do have to make sure there’s a fresh piece of fish or chicken or whatever in the house, so that will require some organisation. Anyway, this has worked well for me so far this week. I’ve taken in fewer calories each day, which is good, but I don’t feel I’ve used much (if any) willpower. I actually like these sorts of meals.

The funny thing is that I remember making these sorts of modest meals back in my calorie counting days - but back then I would also use my calories on sweets and snacks every day! It was a very different approach: the sweets and snacks would always get the better of me in the end, and I never realised I had to break that habit.

I’m hoping that on S days I can relax and have pasta, and this will feel like a treat. I’ve already found that I’m not snacking so much or eating so much chocolate etc. at the weekend...it was upsetting my stomach so much that I think I’ve developed a healthy bit of caution. Perhaps the old S days really have tamed themselves! Incredible! I’m certainly not perfect though.

Anyway, it feels good to be motivated again! I’d more or less given up on any further weight loss, as I couldn’t face being more strict, more compliant with No S. I just didn’t have the willpower, the focus. My new plan doesn’t feel like adding an extra burden of willpower, though. I hope it stays like that!

If I lived alone I’d probably not even bother with dinner half the time! I’d have soup or a boiled egg or something!

I need more autonomy. 😂

sharon227
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by sharon227 » Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:39 pm

Self care is definitely in order after the trauma of a car accident! Best wishes.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by lpearlmom » Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:12 pm

When my great uncle passed away & my aunt finally recovered from the loss, she would gleefully tell us how some nights she’d only eat microwave popcorn and a glass of wine for dinner. He was very insistent that they had a complete, sit down meal every night. 😊
💜💜💜 Please no body or food shaming. Eyes on your own plate. 💜💜💜

3/14-210 lbs;
3/19-163 lbs
7/6-176 lbs









Instagram "lpearlmom"

automatedeating
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:06 pm

Lots of really neat things in this post.

Here were some of my favorites that I was like "YES!" - peanut gallery cheering:
Isn’t it funny how gradual/slow we have to be on No S? Well, on any habit-changing regime, really. It’s something I’m very grateful to have learnt.
So frickin' true!! Like in my case, on the order of YEARS for significant changes. But they do seem to stick when they are built gradually.
My three meals a day have been a balance between what I want, what I feel I need health-wise, and what’s convenient for the family. I didn’t want to waste my willpower on making life harder for myself in that respect.
HURRAH!!!! This is such a critical key for sticking to food changes.
I like the idea of having roughly the same thing every day - it means I don’t have to make decisions. Though I do have to make sure there’s a fresh piece of fish or chicken or whatever in the house, so that will require some organisation.
Oh, yeah, baby. You're singing to me now.
a really simple protein-plus-veg combo. I actually like these sorts of meals.
Me too! And it's funny I was so surprised that [simple prep + tastes good] was waiting for me there all these years. I think I had really overcomplicated my understanding of cooking and eating.

Anyway, great to hear you sounding so upbeat and happy today. Hugs for happy! :-)
Month/Year-BMI
8/13-26.3; 8/14-24.5; 5/15-26.2; 1/16-26.9; 9/16-25.6; 8/17-25.8; 11/17-26.9; 3/18-25.6; 8/18-24.5; 10/18-23.8; 1/19-23.4; 2/19-22.7; 3/19-22.1

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Jul 05, 2019 10:31 pm

Thank you Auto! Glad you related to my post. It was so hilarious though, that the very next day, matters were taken out of my hands by DH and DD who decided they wanted to go for a pizza! So much for autonomy! Ha! Well I didn’t get too cross, as DD did deserve a treat, I just went along with it and stayed as green as possible.

Today though, we were busy getting ready to go out in the evening, and DH offered to cook pasta, which would have been very convenient...but I asked him to cook for himself and DD while I made fish with new potatoes and green beans! Yes, it was awkward, the two of us crowding round the hob. But we managed.

Taking the long-term view is so critical. As long as things go in the right direction, towards smaller, simpler dinners, then my calorie intake should decrease without too much trouble. Just because it’s been a little awkward this week, doesn’t mean I should give up.

Linda, I totally relate to your great Aunt! So often we force ourselves to cook dinner, when it really isn’t that important.

Sharon, so kind of you to pop by and wish me well. :) I am still getting over the accident and still a bit up and down, sensing danger everywhere and feeling a bit subdued. My evening out with DH tonight has lifted my spirits, though! And checking in here, of course!

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Candace » Sat Jul 06, 2019 5:40 pm

Go Octavia! Congratulations on all the stuff that's going so well.
53 year old female. Height 5' 5.5". Weight 6/14/2019: 155 lb. Goal: 145 lb. Stretch goal: 140 lb.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:54 am

Thanks Candace! :)

It’s been a while since I tried to achieve more than just maintenance on No S, and I’d forgotten how frustrating it is, expecting to lose weight. I’ve had a week and a bit of low calorie dinners (mostly) - and lo and behold, my weight has gone up. I know this is how it works....but it’s so annoying! Hopefully over the next few days - if I manage to keep these good habits going - the weight will come down.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Candace » Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:38 pm

I feel you on the annoying bit. Two days ago I had a day with a lot of salt and I'm still swollen up. No doubt if I stepped on the scale I would be very discouraged. I'm hoping to lose weight too, but I have a strong feeling it's going to happen slooooooowly unless I try things that would surely backfire on me. I'm thinking now that my weight will only budge over a timeframe of weeks or months.
53 year old female. Height 5' 5.5". Weight 6/14/2019: 155 lb. Goal: 145 lb. Stretch goal: 140 lb.

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Octavia
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Wed Jul 17, 2019 7:33 pm

Same for me, Candace! I mentioned before that it’s been a while since I tried to actively lose weight...and I certainly had forgotten the many down-sides of that approach. Frustration is one, as I said in my last post. But rebounding into overeating is another! After my week of eating smaller meals, I had a really mad weekend, madder than I’ve been for a while. Loads of chocolate.

This week, I’m revisiting the idea that I need to integrate N days and S days into a plan of moderate eating every single day. And yet the structure of No S works so well - bring strict during the week, knowing you can be a bit festive at the weekend. Would it work to try to be ‘moderately strict’ every day? I don’t like the feeling of swinging from one extreme to the other. Perhaps now No S has trained my behaviour to a large extent, I could go a bit more ‘freestyle’. I’m definitely considering this. If I could tweak my No S routine, I’d make sure that I didn’t overeat treats at the weekend, but I’d allow occasional small snacks during the week. But I’m not sure I could achieve this. Snacks tend to multiply...so do sweets.

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Fri Jul 19, 2019 2:07 pm

Hi Octavia - I was just reading on Ruth's thread and she is doing the every day moderate plan (also like Lifeisablessing). Also Sinnie always did that, and Imogen for a long time too, I think. It could be worth experimenting with, if you feel motivated to try it.

Personally, for me, that hasn't been attractive because I have many days where I have no desire for sweets at all, and I don't want to start a new habit of "training" myself to look forward to a new treat every day. But that's just me. I am all for experimenting when we are curious about trying something new.
Month/Year-BMI
8/13-26.3; 8/14-24.5; 5/15-26.2; 1/16-26.9; 9/16-25.6; 8/17-25.8; 11/17-26.9; 3/18-25.6; 8/18-24.5; 10/18-23.8; 1/19-23.4; 2/19-22.7; 3/19-22.1

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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by Octavia » Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:35 pm

automatedeating wrote:
Fri Jul 19, 2019 2:07 pm

Personally, for me, that hasn't been attractive because I have many days where I have no desire for sweets at all, and I don't want to start a new habit of "training" myself to look forward to a new treat every day.
Good point, Auto - and I would still only allow sweets at the weekend. They are my kryptonite. I think what I’d like to try is having occasional healthy snacks during the week, and occasional sweets at the weekend. This would replace my current practice, which is to have zero snacks during the week, and loads of treats at the weekend!

Having said that, I’ve had a mostly green, traditional No S week. But I’m noticing a new urge towards moderating the entire week. It feels like an organic development rather than an attempt to lose more weight - my weight has unaccountably increased this week, and I’m once again thinking in terms of compliance rather than weight loss. Trying to ‘cut down’ in any way seems to backfire for me. (Other than cutting down on weekend sweets...I quickly forget the ‘sacrifice’/‘lost opportunity’ etc.: one never regrets refusing unhealthy treats!)

It’s been an interesting week here at Octavia Towers! I decided to start taking a soluble fibre supplement, to help regulate my sluggish gut! Drinking these foul concoctions of dissolved sawdust. :lol: Well one side effect is that they are incredibly filling! They don’t half reduce your appetite. Interested to see how I feel after a month or so, and if they might help me stay moderate. Certainly I’m sitting here having had a healthy dinner on a Friday night and am not feeling remotely interested in having a dessert! And Fridays have been challenging recently.

We shall see! I sometimes feel like the Queen of the ‘false dawn’! :lol: So, not expecting too much from my Fibre Revelation! But you never know... 8)

automatedeating
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Re: Octavia is finally checking in!

Post by automatedeating » Fri Jul 19, 2019 9:06 pm

I love my soluble fiber/fibre (ha!) supplements! I often take them as prebiotics for my gut flora, not because of bowel issues, but I am a HUGE fan. :-)
My favorite brand is Heather's Tummy Fiber. It definitely dissolves the best.
Month/Year-BMI
8/13-26.3; 8/14-24.5; 5/15-26.2; 1/16-26.9; 9/16-25.6; 8/17-25.8; 11/17-26.9; 3/18-25.6; 8/18-24.5; 10/18-23.8; 1/19-23.4; 2/19-22.7; 3/19-22.1

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