Weighty Matters

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Changing Perception

on July 2, 2012

I didn’t take lunch today.  It’s not that I didn’t plan ahead, I actually did, and today I planned to order chicken salad from the lunch truck at work.  I took strawberries and a cheese stick for my two snacks.  See?  I did plan.

When I picked up my order, the first thing I thought was, “Wow.  This is a lot of food.”

Tonight I cooked a thin-cut rib eye steak for dinner.  When it was finished, I forked it over to my plate and thought, “That looks delicious.”  Then the oddest sensation came over me, like I was forgetting something important.  It took a few beats, but then I remembered, oh yeah, I can’t eat an entire steak.

These reactions, more than the way my stomach feels when I’ve had enough, tell me that my head is changing. Honestly, in the pre-wls days, I rarely looked at “normal” portions and thought, “This is a lot of food” or even more to the point, “This is too much food.” I might have said that sometimes, but if I did it was most likely more for show, to make it sound better when I was around other people.

When I was on a diet, I’d practice portion control and always take less than what I usually ate.  Every time I felt deprived, like the smaller amounts would never be enough to satisfy my hunger.  It’s a true delight to see myself now voluntarily take less food, smaller spoonfuls, thinner pieces, and so on.  It’s even better to experience satiety with those smaller portions, or even before I’ve consumed what I put on my plate.

I still need more retraining work.  Sometimes I mete out more than I physically want or can fit in my stomach.  I’m getting better at assessing.  Although I don’t usually measure every food, I do pretty good at eyebaling the portions.

Best of all, I make my choices with clear perception and an accurate representation of what is true in the moment.  I don’t over-serve myself or pick larger varieties when out with friends.  Most entrees present too much food, so I’ve gotten good at separating out the right amount for me to eat and packing up the remainder in a to-go box.

Today I did that twice.  When I’d eaten enough of the chicken salad, I packaged it up and put it in the work fridge so that I can have more for lunch tomorrow.  Tonight, I cut my flat steak into two parts and wrapped one half up to put into the refrigerator and enjoy tomorrow.

These actions are no big deal to someone who naturally eats this way.  For me, it’s nearly a freaking miracle.  I’m working on always being aware of my portions and to deal with them meal by meal if necessary.  Seeing the changes in my food and eating perception really inspires me with ever more hope.

I am successfully doing this.  I believe I will succeed long term, not return to my older disease-ridden eating behaviors.  That’s a big change in perception that I now believe with go on and on and on and on.


8 responses to “Changing Perception

  1. pinkpelican says:

    LOL! I keep reminding myself, take less than I think I want. The stove/fridge is only 20 feet away, easy to get more if I’m still hungry.

    I almost never am.

    At work, I keep some pistachios, some peanut butter, some cheese, some fruit … sometimes for snacking, sometimes just so if I manage NOT to bring enough food for a meal, I can supplement.

    when I go out to eat, my mantra is, “if it’s not enough, hey! this is America! There’s more food 3 minutes down the road, and my kitchen is 5 – 10 – 15 minutes away. Not. Going. To. Starve.”

    We started using mostly the small dessert plates and the coffee cup saucers instead of the bigger dinner plates, and we bought a bunch of small (like 6 oz capacity) bowls. Sometimes we use ramekins to eat out of! LOL. If we use the bigger plates, we tend to put too much food on them. Using little plates & bowls helps us control our portions SO much better.

  2. Wonderful for you! I think getting our minds in the right place is the toughest part. (Ok and for me the possiblity of having to MOVE my body instead of sitting down). @Robena: One word. Kefir. Solves my major digestive issues of (tmi alert) gas and IBS symptoms i’ve had forever. seriously. i like the strawberry.

    • Mary Stella says:

      Lora, I’ve never tried Kefir. Does it have probiotics?

      I tried to post a comment on your blog. If SP is getting around using her own style of movement, I wouldn’t worry overmuch. So what if she doesn’t do it like other babies? She’s an innovator!

  3. Mary says:

    Sounds like you are making great progress, Mary. I’m so glad you are feeling satisfied by your food. It’s hard for me to imagine eating so little, but then I don’t have your tool. When hungry I have to take the opposite approach–low calorie/high volume food. Right now I’m enjoying a lot of watermelon.


  4. robenagrant says:

    Change is hard. I admire you with the changes you’re making. I used to live on giant salads, and I mean giant, when I wanted to lose weight. I can’t do that anymore as my “getting older system” rebels. I get awful gas pains. TMI? : ) I still make a huge salad and sometimes I forget and it tastes delicious and I suffer. I have to keep my focus and know that I’m better with less salad and more chicken or tuna to stave off the hungries. But creating that change in my thinking is the tough one.

  5. I’ve been doing some emotional eating lately. The good news is, because I’ve been eating healthily for months, the emotional eating made me feel sick rather quickly. So I’ve stopped. The problem is what to do with the stress when it is too hot to be outside and my back is still bothering me enough to make exercise painful. I wish I had a pool!! Oh well, deep breaths, remembering this too shall pass and a massage and facial and pedicure today will help.

    • Mary Stella says:

      Massage, facial, pedicure – That’s treating yourself right! I have my regular nail appt Thursday and have added on a facial. We’re so worth it!

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