Thursday, August 30, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day Six

Today I talked with my diet coach.  Normally, I'd try to find someone other than my husband to be my coach, but I think this will be a good exercise for us.  We've had some marital issues and as we work to rebuild our intimacy, this will be another way to stay connected and interested in each other's lives.  We've planned to do a weekly check-in every Saturday, so I can hear what he's been working on, and he can hear what I've been working on.

I also think that having a 'live-in' diet coach will help me stay on track more with the actual diet part (which I'm excited to start in a week!) and he'll be able to help me prepare healthy foods that actually taste good.  I pretty much suck at cooking, so I can use all the help I can get. 

Today I ate breakfast and dinner mindfully at the table.

I read my Advantages List and I listened to my guided meditation.

I gave myself credit for all of the above!

Evolution of a Parent

It's funny how we change so much when we raise kids, isn't it?

For instance, before I had children, I totally looked down on people who used toddler leashes.  I thought it was cruel and demeaning to the kids, and wondered why they wouldn't find a better solution.  I'm pretty sure I thought at one point that maybe they just shouldn't go out at all.

Then I had kids, and I realized that those people weren't bad at all.  It's not cruel or demeaning to keep your child safe, it's your job.  If you need to use a toddler leash to prevent your kid from bolting, then do it!

But, I also kind of thought.. well, maybe that's alright for them, but I've taught my children to stay by myself.  I'd never need one of those, because I know the trick to getting kids to behave.

Then my fourth child came along and turned everything on its head, including my thoughts on todder leashes.  Despite all my best efforts to teach him, he is a total runner.  Normally it's not a big deal because I watch him like a hawk, but when we go to places like, say, the New England Aquarium.. well.  I've never actually lost him, but places like that are stressful.

We have two trips to Disney coming up, as well as a season of Aquarium trips and other fun things like that.  I know they sell those stuffed animal harnesses, but they look way too hot for September in Orlando.

So I made him one.

It took forever because I didn't have a pattern and just winged it.  As I usually do.  But it came out really nice, and the chest piece (bodice?  smock?  what would you call that?) can be interchangeable - in other words, I don't always have to use a Mickey one, and in fact, I got some great airplane fabric so I can make another.

As a side note, it's totally adjustable - Niall's wearing it on the smallest setting, and when I put it on Fiona (she asked, I swear), I didn't have to adjust it at all.  She weighs the same as Niall but is about 4-6 inches taller.

My bigger kids wanted to get in on the fun, too.  I did have to adjust it for Lachlann (who's 7), but only the shoulder straps - it still fit him fine around the waist - though I could have added several inches to those straps if I'd needed to.

My husband thinks I should sell them on Etsy, and I'm toying with the thought.  We'll see if I get any feedback about them.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day Five

I really did not want to do the task for Day Five.  My task was to sit alone at my dining room table, with no distractions, and eat both breakfast and lunch this way.  I was supposed to take small bites and chew slowly, swallow each bite before putting more food on my fork, put down my utensils frequently, and take a sip of water every minute or two.

For one, it's almost impossible to eat a meal without distractions because I have four little kids running around.  Plus, that just sounds so boring, doesn't it?

Well, I did it anyway, and you know what I found?  It was really boring.  Like.. mind-numbingly boring.  But I noticed that I was full way sooner than I would have otherwise and ate less (while still a healthy amount).  And because I was bored and eager to leave the table, I didn't eat just to eat.

Dinner obviously had more distractions as I was actively talking with my family, rather than trying to ignore them, but once again, I made sure to really take my time, put my fork down after every other bite, and drink lots of water.

I still don't really want to have to eat this way, as it is pretty boring, but clearly it's a good way to prevent me from eating mindlessly.  So I'll keep it up!

I read my Advantages List twice today, and listened to my guided meditation.

I didn't eat everything sitting down, but I did eat each meal at the table.

I gave myself credit for all the good decisions I made.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day Four

Day Four is about building your confidence by learning to give yourself credit every time you make a good choice.  Seems easy enough.

I tore out the 'Give Myself Credit' response card and put it on my computer monitor.  I'll read it the most this way, vs. carrying it around in my purse.

If I eat something I shouldn't, instead of beating myself up about it, I plan to say, "Oh well, that was a bad choice.  I'll get back on track right now and do better next time."

When I was at the store today, I congratulated myself for not buying an ice cream.  I gave myself credit for not eating as much at breakfast as I would have normally - stopping when I was full vs. eating the full serving.  I also congratulated myself for doing all of my steps on Day Four.

I'm not having any sabotaging thoughts about this day's work.

I read my Advantages List twice today.

While I planned to eat all of my meals at the table today, I actually didn't eat anything at the table.  I need to work harder on this tomorrow.

I listened to my guided meditation today.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day Three

Day Three talks about how you must sit down, at a table, and avoid doing anything other than eating when you're supposed to be eating.  This is a very difficult thing for me to do.  I know a lot of women eat while standing up (while they're cooking, or rushing to get other things done), or eat food off their family's plates while they're cleaning up.. and that's not me.  When I eat something, I relax.  However.. I don't sit at the table, and it's only at dinnertime that I don't do something else at the same time.

For me, it's because mealtimes are a break.  I discovered long ago that my children eat better if I'm not sitting there nagging them.  So for breakfast and lunch, I'm usually around but not sitting with them while they eat.  At breakfast, I'm often doing things in the kitchen, but for lunch, I'll take my food and sit at my desk in my bedroom and check email while they watch a TV show while they eat (terrible habit to promote, I know).  Or I'll sit next to them but read a book.  And when I snack, I'm usually either watching TV or reading.  I figure - if I'm going to take a break to eat a snack, I'm going to include TV, reading, or the Internet to make it a really good break rather than just a chance to eat food.

So I know I'm going to have a difficult time with this.  It will not be easy to sit at my dining room table and only eat.  I know I'll feel deprived, and I won't want to bother with it, but I need to try to do it consistently, because what I've done in the past obviously doesn't work.

My sabotaging thoughts will probably be:

1.  "I could be doing X right now while I'm eating, it's a waste of time to 'only' eat."

2.  "This is so boring!  I don't have anything to do."

3.  "I deserve to be able to enjoy myself while I eat."

My responses should be:

1.  "I'm not 'only' eating - I'm focusing on how the food tastes, and I'm paying attention to how full I'm feeling.  I can watch TV later, but I can only do those things now, while I'm eating."

2.  "There's plenty to do - notice how each bite tastes, make sure I take my time chewing, and monitor my hunger/fullness."

3.  "Eating is not supposed to be soothing.  If I need to soothe myself somehow, I should focus on healthy coping behaviors, and not incorporate food into that.  Food is meant for nourishing my body, not my emotional state."

I read my Advantages List twice today, and I also listened to my guided meditation.  I commited to eating while sitting down every single time.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day Two

Day Two involves committing to a diet plan.  Two, in fact.  The idea is that if your primary diet plan isn't working for you, having already selected a back-up plan prevents any time lost when switching to a new plan.  Seems like a smart and easy idea.

My primary diet plan will be the Spark People website.  It's free, easy, and I'm already familiar with it.  It's basically just calorie/nutrient tracking.  Because there's no real eating plan besides staying within calories, I don't plan on modifying it at all.

My back-up diet plan is Weight Watchers.  I'd rather not have to rely on WW, but I do know it works and I'm comfortable with it, so I think it's a good choice.  At this point, I don't plan on making any modifications to the WW plan.  However, I'm not sure if I'd switch to the old 123Success plan, or whatever new plan WW has.

I'm not experiencing any sabotaging thoughts about picking a reasonable, healthy, responsible diet plan.

I did read my Advantages list three times today.

I also listened to a guided meditation that I got from my therapist's office.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Beck Diet Solution: Day One

I feel like I'm being a bit redundant here, but once again, I'm going to start working on the Beck Diet Solution as a way to improve my chances at losing weight and keeping it off.  The book I'm using is this:  Beck Diet Solution, by Judith S. Beck.  I also have the Beck Diet Solution Workbook, which is useful and has some information and exercises that aren't in the regular book.

As I work through the plan, I'll post my responses to exercises and my journaling here.  So here goes:

Day One

Chapter Three:

Important points from the questionnaire:  My motivation to lose weight is low-to-moderate.  I'm anxious about this.  I have a lot of good reasons to lose weight, and I really want them.. but I feel like I don't really have the desire to make the changes I need to make.  Also - I'm an emotional eater (duh).  I often eat to comfort myself.  I have a lot of resentment about having to deny myself foods that I want.  I also have a very hard time tolerating hunger and cravings.

Chapter Four:  How to Motivate Myself  - or -  Reasons I Want to Lose Weight

  • I'll look better and more attractive
  • I'll have more confidence
  • I'll be able to wear a smaller size.
  • I'll fit into more fashionable clothing.
  • I'll feel happier when I look in the mirror.
  • I'll feel better in a bathing suit.
  • I won't feel so self-conscious.
  • I'll feel better physically.
  • I'll have more stamina.
  • I'll have more energy.
  • I'll be able to keep up with my kids.
  • I'll be less inhibited about my body.
  • I'll enjoy physical intimacy more.
  • I'll like myself better.
  • I'll feel as if I've accomplished something important.
  • I'll do more things in public, such as dancing or swimming.
  • I'll be more comfortable eating in front of others.
  • I'll feel in control.
Relevant Response Card from Chapter Four:

I don't want to feel deprived, BUT I can modify my plan in advance to include my favorite foods.  Besides, I'm either going to deprive myself of some foods, or deprive myself of being thinner.  Either way, I experience deprivation.

Completed Tasks for Day One:

Made several copies of my Advantages List.  One for my purse, one for the fridge, and one for the computer monitor.

Decided to read my Advantages List first thing in the morning, and right before going to bed.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Framed Family Tree

Some people are so hard to shop for.  My mom is one of these people.  This year, for her birthday, she asked for two Barbie outfits and a new Lego set so she could play with my kids.  Well, that's great, Mom, but I'd like to give you something.

After some thought, I decided to give her a family tree of some sort.  I really want to do a tree with both branches and roots, so I could show her parents and grandparents as well as her children and grandchildren, but I couldn't come up with a design I really liked.

So instead, I came up with my own version of this amazing, hand cut family tree that I saw on Etsy.  I do not hand cut things, so I spent about two hours coming up with an image in Silhouette Studio.  It was a bit of a pain to cut - my blade is a little dull so I used a brand new mat to improve the chances of it cutting well, but then it was really hard to pull off the mat in one piece.

But I think it turned out really well, don't you?