I restarted my keto journey on April 26th which means today is my 30-day milestone.
I’ll start with the number that everyone will want to know: 10. I’ve only lost ten pounds in this first month, which will probably seem really low to a lot of you reading this – especially since my weight is currently in the upper 300s. And I’ll admit that I’m disappointed the number isn’t a little higher. I know there are possibly other factors at play, like plateaus and water retention/swelling. (I was in a bad accident a couple years ago, and when the pressure is low, I swell up a lot in my leg that was injured.) Last time I tried keto (which was my first time) I lost literally double that – I had ended that first month at 20 lbs. And of course, it’s hard not to compare.
It’s hard not to compare your current self to your past self. It’s hard not to compare yourself to your husband, who is losing faster even though he weighs less. It’s hard not to compare yourself to strangers on the same journey. It’s hard to see them posting huge losses each month and seeing them fitting into adorable outfits while you’re still bursting out of yours. This Instagram-filtered world we live in brings out the little green monster of envy in all of us at some point. It takes me over every weigh-in day when I see that the number hasn’t gone down, or worse, gone up a little. And it doesn’t let go for the entire day.
But then something happens. Something that has never happened on any other previous weight-loss attempt. I wake up the next morning and I’m completely over it. I don’t have the urge to give up and go back to eating like crap. I’m not thinking that “this clearly isn’t worth it since I’m not losing anything”. It is absolutely worth it. I remember that I’m not just doing this to lose weight. That is, obviously, the ultimate goal – to get to a healthy weight for the first time in my adult life. I want to be comfortable in my own skin. We want to start a family. Too many things to list that I can’t do at my current weight.
But I have a lot of mental and emotional habits to break and work to do before I can get there. That is why I’m back on keto. My “trigger foods” that beckon me when I’m upset, depressed, bored, whatever, are all carbs. Bread, bagels, fries, thick crust pizza, chips, etc. I don’t have a healthy relationship with food, nor do I have other coping skills besides food, so I’m (at this time, anyway) unable to “eat in moderation” all the things that every diet advice column recommends. I need to stay away from them completely.
That’s the difference this time. I’m acknowledging that I have a food addiction. Really acknowledging it. Not joking about it to friends and family in the self-deprecating manner I’m so skilled at. I’m treating it just like an alcoholic would by staying away from the things I can’t control myself around. When I’m feeling down or upset, I try to think about why I’m feeling that way instead of just immediately turning to food to soothe the feelings away. I ignored my feelings for years because yummy food made them (temporarily) go away.
Now I journal my feelings and thoughts instead. I’m already halfway through a 180 page journal, and I only started it at the beginning of April. 90 pages in less than two months. 90 pages worth of thoughts that I would have eaten instead.
I have also been trying to listen more to my body, and eat when I’m truly hungry, and not eat when I’m not hungry. I know, this is groundbreaking stuff right? LOL! For me, it is though. Which for a healthy person, probably sounds really stupid, but for someone with a food addiction it can be extremely difficult to treat food as energy only. For me it was also my therapist and friend when things were too hard. (But the really bad kind of friend who keeps getting you in trouble, yet you can’t seem to stay away!)
I’m primarily eating one meal a day, usually around noon-1:00. If I’m hungry later, I’ll have a small snack but a lot of the time that one meal is enough to keep me full all day thanks to all the fat and protein. Because it’s just my husband and I, I only cook 2-3 times a week now since most meals have at least one day’s worth of leftovers. We eat burritos made with low-carb tortillas (those are a freaking godsend!), pizza made with a fathead dough recipe (google it if you don’t know what it is), fattier cuts of steak with lots of healthy veggies, gyro bowls, etc. This time around, I’m actually liking the food because I’m putting more effort into ensuring we have more variety. I’m not letting my inner lazy, whiny, self-sabotaging bitch take control this time. 🙂 I’m also making sure there are a lot more vegetables this time to round out our plates and give us more vitamins and fiber.
So that’s how my first month went. Even though the number on the scale didn’t drop anywhere near as much as I was hoping, I’m still happy with my results. It’s not just about that damn number. It’s a lesson I’m teaching myself for the first time and will be continually learning throughout this entire journey. Until next time friends.