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Numbers or Pleasure

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Pondering these thoughts.

When I first started, my journey it was still a diet and losing weight was my sole goal. I under ate and lost weight rapidly. Losing 5 pounds a week is very satisfying. I happily tracked my weight, water and calculated my portions. I weighed my food and used willpower to force myself to live within my restrictions.

The journey was all about the numbers. The scale had great power over my happiness. The day was a success when my tracking numbers said it was a success. A huge fear of failure and quitting was quietly and consistently undermining my confidence. Unfortunately, as we all know, 5 pound loses are unsustainable. Perfect journeys don’t exist. Cravings happen, Slips happen. Binges happen. Plateaus happen Weekly weight loss numbers are inconsistent. Numbers are really unreliable at measuring progress and they don’t make me consistently happy..

Martha Beck in the Four Day Win said “Most of our eating is driven by mental and emotional hunger.” When craving a food pleasure, she advises we train ourselves to intentionally substitute inedible nourishment to satisfy our mind or heart hunger. She states in bold print “You must increase non food pleasure at the same time you desire to eat to reduce food intake.”
Balance Your Nourishment equation
More Non Food Pleasures Balances Fewer Food Pleasures

So I’ve been thinking a lot about the nourishment equation. Since weight loss numbers are unsatisfying, I need to train myself to look past the numbers and find reliable non food pleasures to satisfy the equation. We enjoy food pleasure every time we eat. Most of us frequently desire more food pleasure than our body’s daily calorie allowance requires. That means I need lots and lots of non food pleasures to feel balanced.

So what non food pleasures will actually satisfy me. It’s not easy for me to find weight loss rewards but I gave myself a pair of socks at Christmas because I had done a lot of work on my journey at that time. Every time I wear those socks, I remember the pride I took in myself and my efforts at Christmas. The feeling of pride was the non food pleasure not the socks. The journey itself is bringing me feelings of pride and that is giving me a non food pleasure.

When I was talking with Beth, she reminded me of a SP article she wrote. This is just her main points. Please read the article for more details.

10 Signs You are Getting Healthier Even if the Scale Doesn’t Move
By Beth Donovan, ~INDYGIRL

Sometimes the scale doesn’t budge and you wonder if you are getting any healthier on your fitness plan. Well, here are 10 signs that you are!
1. You feel like taking on something new.
2. You notice a new pep in your step.
3. Your clothes are fitting differently.
4. Your medical test scores are improving.
5. You start taking that one extra step.
6. You look for ways to make other’s lives easier.
7. You feel more positive and energetic.
8. Your hair, skin and nails start to look marvelous.
9. You look forward to your workout time.
10. You crave healthier fare.

As you can see, the scale is not the final decision maker as to whether you are getting healthier on your health plan. YOU are. Look for and celebrate the little things that you find new to your life

All of the things Beth listed are happening in my life now as a result of my being on the journey. Talking with Beth, I realized how much happier I am because I’m on this journey. Things I can do now that I couldn’t do before because of my weight. I can now easily walk miles at a normal pace, breathing normally while talking with my family. I love walking in the cool air with the smell of the ocean and seeing the lovely Victorian houses, the brightly colored, flowers and things just feel healthier while I’m there and more comfortable with the ideal temperatures and cool sea breezes. Walking the dog, I have physical freedom and it is incredible and I can see up close and far away at the same time and everywhere you go there is eye candy like a view of the ocean or bay, an iron fence or gingerbread house detail or the texture of a thatched roof. I happily go walking there and as a result, I look better in my clothes. Every time I go for a walk there, it’s a giant reward because I feel like I am on vacation. I feel rejuvenated when I’m by the beach. I want to eat light seafood and salads and healthy fare and I walk and walk and I can go there as often as I want and admire people’s gardens. It’s very very special place and my troubles drift away.

It’s important to stop and recognize all the wonderful pleasurable things that are happening in our lives now as a result of our journey. They are the sweet unexpected treats that we find pleasure in now. They create the balance we seek.

So what inedible nourishments is your journey bring to you?
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