My thoughts on overeating and weight loss
I was approaching my 40th birthday and morbidly obese.
I existed in a state of embarrassment and shame.
Common thoughts at the time were…
“How much more weight do I need to gain before the weight gain stops?”
”I hope I don’t die at this weight, the ultimate humiliation would be having the pallbearers struggle to lift my coffin at my funeral”
“How did I become such a failure?”
I had a lovely home, two amazing children, a solid marriage, a successful business – no traumatic childhood.
I also used to think…
“Anyone hearing about my life will think I am a success – anyone looking at me will think I am a disaster”
I felt so capable in so many areas of my life, work, and family, and yet so incompetent at something that, I thought, should be relatively straight forward.
Losing weight and keeping it off!
My weight had fluctuated since my teens. I grew up in a family...
When clients come to me to lose weight one of the first things that I ask them to do is to keep eating exactly as they have been for a week and to keep a detailed food journal.
A food journal helps me, and my client, identify patterns and learn why they are overeating and overweight. For years I just thought I overate because I was ‘greedy’ or had ‘no will power’. I had shame around not being able to control my eating, and when I felt that shame and thought I was incapable, I would seek comfort in food and eat more.
When I understood all the reasons why humans have evolved to overeat, when I learned about food and eating with regards to our physiology, neurobiology, psychology and evolution it helped me to overcome that shame and frustration. This in turn enabled me to work with my body and brain, and not against them as I had done for years.
So here are the five things that I ask clients to observe and record when we start working...
When I was struggling to lose weight, I was frequently self-sabotaging my diet. I would get frustrated and disappointed in myself, even though I felt powerless to stop. If this is familiar to you, I encourage you to get curious about what is happening in your brain and to learn how you can stop this negative behaviour by checking out this blog post.
It is the sabotaging, whether consciously or subconsciously, of oneself, or one’s own interests, plans, goals etc.
There are many ways in which we self-sabotage our own weight loss, most of them resulting in us eating something that does not support our weight loss goals, wehther we get some short term comfort and enjoyment from that eating or not. More specifically we: