There are a lot of people who have said to me at some point or another that they’re amazed that I could be so open in public on my blog. Truthfully when I started writing it I expected a lot of abuse from the internet.
It’s what I often received in the street so why should (what I imagined to be) an bearpit of online trolls be any different?
Surprisingly the opposite happened and instead I got nothing but support (often from total strangers) which re-affirmed my faith in human nature at just the right moment in time.
Furthermore I’ve found that my online honesty has improved and even created many friendships that probably wouldn’t have changed or happened if I hadn’t started writing about how I feel and what I’m trying to do to improve my life.
It’s a force for good for me and I love writing it.
However – although I’ve never lied in my blog there are some things I still find it really hard to talk about. I have often felt guilty of lying by omission – which is probably ridiculous but absolutely honest.
While I’m completely up front in my Slimming World group about what I eat and my habits (if I’m asked) I’m aware it rarely touches my blog.
I suppose it’s because it’s nice to feel that my outward literary persona is a successful one – and that even when I’m flawed in front of an audience I can still demonstrate progress.
In an ideal world I would like people that read my blog to think that I have my eating completely under control – but in many ways I feel I still don’t and I’ve been putting off talking openly about it.
So I’m going to do something that I find quite scary in an effort to push myself a bit further. I can’t walk at the moment thanks to my pulled ligament – but I can focus on what I eat while I’m burning less calories and be totally transparent while I do.
I’ve been writing EVERYTHING I’ve eaten down since weighing in on Saturday and I think it’s time I was honest with myself and readers about what a ‘normal week’ (so far) of eating is to me at the moment.
Large pack of ham and a punnet of cherry tomatoes
2 medium baked potatoes, 2 salmon steaks, light mayo, teaspoon of oil for stir fry, stir fry (speed veg)
1 Banana + natural fat free yoghurt (250g) frozen berries, 30g rolled oats + Stevia sweetener
Punnet of 6 plums (eaten in two fridge visits during the afternoon and evening)
250g of chicken and handful of prawns prawn stirfry (pre packed and chopped speed veg) + teaspoonful of oil
250g chicken in a stew with a handful of prawns, carrots, swede, courgette and onion + two spoonfuls of patakas balti curry paste (two breakfast bowls worth eaten)
Two medium baked potatoes, four large tomatoes, 8 gherkins, half tub onion and chive cottage cheese, 4 pork medallions
Punnet of cherry tomatoes with 115g of ham slices.
Punnet of cherry tomatoes plus sainsburys garlic and herb chicken pieces and a packet of sainsburys ham chunks (125g each).
Mug of hot chocolate (two heaped spoonfuls of Aldi light version wich is 2 syns)
Frozen berries (free), 30g oats, 250g fat free natural yogurt + cinnamon and stevia
Chilli – 250g mince, half a can of kidney beans, half red pepper, broccoli, half can chopped toms, half large onion, mushrooms, tomato purée. (Other half saved for Wednesday)
Beef stew – can of chopped tomatoes, carrot, swede, potato and onion with 500g stewing steak (this made two breakfast bowls. I ate it all.)
Cherry tomatoes punnet (1am post meal snack)
I’m aware that I eat more than most people at meal times. I keep it under control when I’m with friends or eating out but when I’m alone I can still easily eat 2 meals (sometimes even 3) in short succession.
Honestly the above list is less than I used to eat – both in bulk and the number of calories – so in many ways I feel I’ve progressed. I’m still craving TWO bowls of stew though when I should be satisfied with one.
I end up both angry and guilty not just that I feel like this but after a meal when I feel I’ve succumbed to temptation and overeaten – even if it’s been good food.
In some ways I don’t feel I’ve moved forward at all. But I’m trying. I’m REALLY trying.
As if by magic (the universe was once again listening) Angie (my SW consultant) texted me earlier to ask how my week was going.
When I received the message I was getting dressed and ready to go out. I wanted to sit in Starbucks to write this so that I wasn’t stuck at home in my armchair with my aching leg up 10ft away from the fridge thinking about food and bargaining with myself.
I sent her my food list above in rough form and she also highlighted the portion sizes – plucking the thoughts seemingly right out of my brain.
My willpower is REALLY struggling with the concept of a ‘normal’ (I really hate that word) portion size and the Slimming World view that I should eat until I feel satisfied.
Honestly I’m a really poor judge of satisfaction and always have been.
In the past it’s always meant the point that I reach when I am physically incapable of doing anything to even greater excess. In eating terms it’s been the moment I would fall asleep in a ‘food coma’.
Although the food comas are almost a thing of the past I really want to change my mindset – and I’m really worried that without all of my usual exercise I’m going to screw up on the scales again this week.
I said as much (rather emotionally) to my friend last night during a particularly in depth heart to heart.
I ended up unexpectedly vocalising one of the prime reasons I’m so obsessed with walking. It just fell out of my mouth without me planning to speak about it or thinking about it beforehand. The reason had clearly been there – quietly lying in wait in my brain, waiting to pounce on the opportunity to jump out and be discussed.
Fundamentally it’s fear. Fear of the world around me and not being strong enough to support myself in it.
I’m not agoraphobic or prone to feeling tangible terror but like someone that goes to self defence classes after being attacked I’ve been walking (although there are also lots of other more enjoyable reasons) as a form of personal empowerment.
I want to feel capable of simply holding myself upright, crossing the road, running out of the way of a car or getting away from the people that slow down or stop on the street to call me names.
This hasn’t happened for a while now – but I’m always hyper aware that it could come when I least expect it.
I’ve felt (on a largely unconscious level I think) so vulnerable and under threat outside for so long and so conscious of not being able to protect or look after myself in so many situations that any current sign of weakness or lack of forward progress (such as my current inability to walk) become blown out of all proportion to me.
I know that I’m my own worst critic and that I’m also the type that can overthink things.
Both are blessings and curses.
As I type someone from my Slimming World family is reminding me to be kind to myself – and last night I was told in no uncertain terms by my confidant that I should treat myself the same way I treat my friends.
It’s good advice – but often hard to follow. I can be a crap friend to myself at times.
On the one side I like to think I can learn about what make me tick – but on the other side I also become obsessed with things way more than I should and label myself as a total failure.
Self image and portion sizes. Both are ongoing works in progress.
Anyway. I’ve shared now and for the time being got it off my chest. You know just a little bit more about me. I hope if you, reading this, feel the same way or do the same things that you realise you’re not alone.
I’ll keep you up to date on this. As much as I really don’t want to, I also feel I need to be open so that there’s nothing left to hide from and less chance of failure.
Since I like to finish on a positive note however – after some spirited feedback on Facebook, Instagram and this blog I decided that I’d act upon my recent hat love and buy the cap from the other day.
Amazon delivered it yesterday and I can report that after the birth of this new partnership both hat and Davey’s head are doing well. The newborn pair are happy and warm.
I have hardly removed it since the courier handed it over and am wearing it in Starbucks while I write this.
For some odd reason it makes me really happy 😊.