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New Gurgle

It may not look fancy, but it is left overs from a turkey dinner. Easy, nutritious, delicious and ready with little effort.

When am I actually hungry? Is a question I’ve been grappling with for weeks. I want to lose weight, so I may believe I have to tip the scales a little too far. I might need to be a little hungry.

Or, quite possibly, that is another holdover from the “think yourself thin” days, but I digress.

Physical symptoms of “needing” were not all hunger based so this marker of hunger was quickly shelved, at least until I could distinguish my other emotions.

So I started with a physical growl. Quantitative. This was softened to a gurgle because I recognized I would be in a full-on panic by the time I ate.

Then I got sick, dieter’s disease, gall stones, and I had to rethink that level. I stuck with it for a while and realized there is a blend. Sometimes I want to eat before the gurgle and sometimes not. Still too much.

So I’ve returned to trying to determine if the need in my body is hunger and I’m better able to recognize hunger signals, because I’ve been forcing myself to sit in hunger and await the gurgle.

I learned the difference between hunger and other needs and I also realized I’m more energized to exercise when I eat under less stringent standards. I now know when it is other discomfort. Just past thirty pounds since I got back from Spain.

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Blog Length

Some thoughts on size, that is blog size, just to be clear :-). So, far my aim is 300 words. Now I will likely release larger chunks and then cut them up. I find I can express most thoughts and ideas in about that or less, I’ve been staggering ideas a bit to make it work.IMG_6891

I’ve now defined two levels of under eating, turns out that what I tried last week (stopping eating as soon as my thoughts strayed) was just another form of under eating. Not as bad as calorie counting and just toughing it out, by any means. I could always eat when I was hungry. Unfortunately, I had a gassy, growling, stomach for almost 9 solid hours. That is too hungry, I need to find the next level above it.

Right now, I am trying to only eat when my stomach is gurgling or growling. That is beginning a shift. (I’ve already released a post saying this is wrong.) I do not consider whether or not I’m hungry. If my stomach is quiet, I’m not hungry. So, I need something as indisputable about when to stop eating. I’m still working on that. I have a scale of four levels, two above my goal and two below. I need to find the sweet spot in the middle.

See, that was under three hundred words. Now, I’m going out on the deck to have a smoke.

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Dieter’s Disease

Embarrassed to say that waiting for my stomach to growl was quite likely under eating for me. Off and on for several days I’ve had digestive upset (way worse than that) consistent with gallbladder problems. 

One of the “causes” is dieting. Also, the type of woman that gets it, and it is twice as likely for women, are: Fair, Fat, Fertile, Forty and Female. Yes, most women are female. I’m fifty, but the rest applies. I’ve spent a lot of time on-line reading about symptoms, causes and treatments.

It is alarming to realize that in the scientific literature (try google scholar) the wording is softer: ‘we think’, ‘it is consistent’, ‘it is possible’ and ‘we are trying to demonstrate’.

In stark contrast, all of the natural and homeopathy sites are certain of everything. Treatments ‘will’ work, options are ‘certainly’ better and suggestions are ‘proven’.

If I am not better soon, I’ll have to call a doctor. Thank goodness, I’m Canadian. The only reason not to call is my own reluctance.

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Tempered Ice Cream

Tempered ice cream. Take a spoonful of the ice cream and set it down. This is just temporary, you don’t need a specific set up. Then put the lid back onto the ice cream and return it to the freezer. In the time it takes to put the container away, the ice cream on the spoon is almost completely tempered. If you can, wait another minute. If not, indulge immediately. Either way, this is the perfect amount. Have more another time, there is plenty left.IMG_6875

I received two likes while writing just now. They came in back to back and my fantasy is that a friend shared it and they both liked it at the same time. None the less, I greatly appreciate all of the support that I’ve been receiving. I have been attempting to put myself out there and the support has done wonders for me. Thanks.

There was an advertisement on the radio for volunteers to go and visit elderly people perhaps to play a board game or something like that. I have recognized that one of the things I’d like to do is volunteer. The problem is, it had to be something that I enjoyed doing for its own sake. I could manage a website, for instance, but that would not satisfy all of my needs. My number one right now is loneliness. So, human contact would be required.

I wouldn’t go so far as to call that a synchronicity, and after a day or so of thought I might change my mind. It was an advertisement and that is the purpose for them. But, I did put it out there to the universe that volunteering might be a good thing.

See how I feel tomorrow.

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Delicious

Watching carefully for that split between I’m enjoying this mouthful and I want to get the next bite. It is subtle and ingrained. Specifically designed to make the bits overlap so that you don’t notice you’re not hungry anymore.

I stopped to experience a mouthful of pizza. This is where words fail me. It was a jumble of temperatures, textures, tastes and touch. The luxury of swallowing. The response of my salivary glands, the afterglow of the spices. That is what eating is like when you are hungry. No need to think about fat and sugar if you are reducing overall how much you eat.

Food must be delicious. Why eat something you’re not enjoying, at all? But I digress. I’m still trying to adequately define the difference between hunger and just wanting to eat more. That time, I was going to get more, just as I finished. I might be on a red herring here, but its worth investigating.

Now espresso. No question, my favourite. The coffee, sugar and cream in a very small volume, quite concentrated and intense. A small sip can be completely satisfying and certainly won’t make you feel overfull.

Being very careful about not overeating has begun to make me feel powerful. I am maximizing my enjoyment of eating. This is going hand and hand with not eating too much. It feels empowering.

I just had some coffee ice cream from the stand at the Farmer’s market. They took chocolate covered, Starbuck’s espresso beans and ground them up and added them to the ice cream. Fantastic. I knew I had had enough when I got distracted enough to be thinking about next steps.

When you begin to pay attention there is quite a difference between actually focusing on eating and letting your mind slip into other concerns. The first one I noticed of course was taking the next bite. It is still another focus. It means you’ve lost the enjoyment of eating.

My first analysis of the above would suggest that you would either learn to pay more attention to the food you were eating or forget to pay attention at all.

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Distractions

Now, my exploration is to determine why I eat when I’m not hungry. So, that is now. I have an overwhelming desire to eat. I have promised myself that I will wait. Unfortunately, I know from past experience, once I have a full meal in the evening, I am unlikely to be hungry again until tomorrow morning.

This will force me to face head on my desire to eat. I am going to alternate writing and watching television. I associate television with eating, so that will be challenging on its own.

It’s loneliness. There is no question. That is not a new revelation for me, but I am just at the stage of being aware of it. Now, the hard part starts. Not eating, feeling this emotion. Mmmmhhhh.IMG_6711

Seriously looking for a distraction. I went out back for a few minutes. It is beautiful out there. I started to think about how I should decorate. I actually had what might have been a small growl. I’m going to wait ten minutes or so and see if I have another one. At that point, I’ll re-evaluate. Definitely a rumble. I’m going to have some wine and cheese.

My computer screamed at me. I just dashed in to get the latest copy of my Oprah Magazine. There is no way I’m choosing electronic delivery. It is the experience of having the smooth pages, tearing out a perfume sample, or recipe. The corner turned.

Just that whole linear thing. I miss that. I knew I was starting at the beginning, seeing everything and finishing. With multiple links and other pages opening, I always feel like there is more, just out of reach. There is no sense of satisfaction, but I digress.

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Exhilaration

I have five minutes only. I have pork chops in the frying pan and a timer set. Things have shifted for the better again. I feel my self energized and diving into my days, both literally and figuratively. I have started the free Hootsuite course about media marketing and I’ve already discovered it is possible to add WordPress now and it is possible to do an entire mass marketing campaign on one spreadsheet. That would save me hours.

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I always put more food on my plate than I can or want to eat. It is my way of listening to how I feel rather than relying on serving size; hence two pork chops.

So, my yard is coming together, the weather is getting warmer, things have improved at work and I’m energized by my two new projects. Oh, and Sophie was replaced with a back scratcher, with the word, “Alaska” on the handle. Infinitely more useful and actually sleeps right beside the bed. Good trade.

Dinner tonight is Ontario Asparagus with an old cheddar cheese and parmesan sauce and seared pork chops. I hope I remember to photograph it before I start eating! Beeep, literally, right then.

I had my dinner. I didn’t eat the full plate full. The first part of me handing my hunger over to my body, instead of my brain, was to learn when I was full. It was difficult. I specifically witnessed the fact that when stressed, I never got a full signal. That has not happened for a very long time.

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