"If I was doing this for myself, I'd still be on the couch eating Cheetos®!"
Thoughts and Hints
Being Fat Can Only Be Fully Understood By A Fat Person
One day at the Y, I made the mistake of telling a skinny lady that I was in the Ultimate New Year's Resolution Contest. She went into a 15 minute diatribe about loosing weight. She might have weighed 110 lbs. She spoke about weight loss as if it had been a lifelong struggle for her. Let me first admit that I have no idea what it is like being skinny and have never given health tips to the skinny. Those who have not struggled with weight (obesity), have no idea what it is like being fat. They may understand the physical angles like caloric intake and exercise, but they have no idea about what it feels like to be fat and all it takes to conquer weight. Through the years of being accosted by skinny people telling me how to lose weight, I have found several flaws in their advice. Here are a couple:
The first major flaw is that you have to lose weight for yourself. It seems skinny people lose weight for themselves. They will drop 5 pounds and work on better abs before bathing suit season. Bathng Suit Season? Haven't seen my abs ever!! Most fat people (like me) would still be on the couch eating Cheetos if we were doing it for ourselves. The motivation usually wells up from some external stimuli. Whether it is a doctor telling you that your life will be significantly shortened if you continue on that path or looking into the eyes of your children as they long for you to be more active in their lives.
Thought Flaw #2, Skinny people talk about just pushing away from the table and cutting out calories. Obesity is not a matter of deep love of food just as nicotine addiction is not about the love of the taste of cigarettes. It is not so much about food. I need to find a copy of my contest entry where I was fairly matter of fact about why I wanted to lose weight. I wrote several drafts that went deeper and darker. I deleted them because they revealed more about me and the hopelessness I felt about my weight and in turn my life outlook.
Creating Time To Decide
Just like most things the first few minutes decide whether success is possible. If you feel like you need to put something in your mouth, try something harmless first. I use Eclipse gum. It creates a buffer, so that I don't immediately put something I will regret later into my mouth. It is amazing how quickly a piece of cake can disappear in less than 30 seconds. If you chew gum first, it allows you to decide whether you are really hungry. If you are hungry, it gives you time to pull into the grocery store and pick up a healthy food rather than driving through somewhere and ordering off the dollar menu. If you are home, it allows you to fix something while chewing the gum. I have found that it really helps curb impulsive eating. I put one pack of gum on top of the fridge and one in the cup holder in the truck. Try it and see if it doesn't help.