Monday, November 18, 2013

More Confessions of an Emotional Eating, Junk Food Addict

It was here, on this very blog, that I first publicly confessed to being an Emotional Eating, Junk Food Addict. It was the step, no, leap, I needed to push me into action to make a significant change.

Well, I am back with more confessions and I am hoping it will help as much as it did the last time.

In the last few weeks I have totally let the addict overtake me again...

I'm not proud to admit it, in fact I am embarrassed and ashamed, but admit it I must. At times, it has been like something has totally taken over my brain and I all I can think about is the next time I can get my hands on junk food, take away, lollies, cake, anything! It has been like a driving force that couldn't be satiated - a hungry wild animal on the prowl.

It has been scary and overwhelming and, to be completely honest, most of the time when I was eating the "desired" food, I wasn't even enjoying it! I was hating myself for eating it, feeling sick from being so stuffed with food that had no nutritional value, telling myself it would be the last time, then, moments later, thinking about my next "fix". Seriously, such a vicious cycle.

I am absolutely an emotional eater and with my Stress Disorder, Depression and Anxiety all heightened recently my defences were down and that hungry beast took advantage. My energy levels have been super low too, which only fuelled the fire for wanting high energy, high sugar foods

I don't think it is a coincidence that I had just reached my 10kg lost this time with Weight Watchers when all this began. Somewhere in my brain, reaching that goal, gave permission to self-sabotage, rather than continue in the good patterns I had formed to reach that goal in the first place. How is that for screwed-up thinking!?

Appointments with my therapists are coming up soon, and I will definitely be speaking about it with them. I don't think I have ever felt so "wild" and so unable to control my eating as I have been lately. That scares me. It scares me A LOT! Maybe it is the result of new medication, maybe it is a result of the extra stresses I have been dealing with. Maybe it is as simple as the result of me saying "yes" too often when I should have been saying "no." I don't really know what the cause is.

The solution though, at least in part, I do know. I need to go back to my Weight Watchers meetings. I need the support of those who are doing this journey too. So, I'm heading back to my meeting tonight. I am afraid to get back on those scales. I have a feeling I'm am going to have undone pretty much all of my hard work from this last effort... that is not a happy thought.

I don't know why I can't keep myself on track, why I can't enjoy my success and keep going with it. It genuinely isn't as though my chosen way to lose weight and be healthy, Weight Watchers, is some kind of crazy restrictive diet that is set up to fail. It's not, not at all. It's a great program that I fully believe in and have seen many people be successful on... so what's my problem? What is it that is hindering me? I really can't seem to work it out.

All I know is I don't want to give up. I might be bruised and battered by the battle and have fallen off my horse, but I am determined to get back up, keep on fighting and try to win the war! Hopefully, with the help of Weight Watchers, my Therapists, my Doctor and some divine intervention to back me up, the fight won't be quite so hard!

I know I have written many posts here saying that I'm giving it another go, and this will be 4th time getting back on the Weight Watchers program in only 18 months, but I do mean it. I do give it a good try every time, and as yet, I haven't given up hope that this next time with be THE time!

Thank you all for your support and love. It helps beyond measure! Thank you for listening to me confessions, my thoughts and for riding the ups and downs with me.

Here we go again...!

[illustration by Ally Fraley]

Friday, November 1, 2013

Reaching Goals + Losing the Way

A few weeks ago I was so excited! I had reach my first goal of losing 10kg since re-joining Weight Watchers in July. It felt so good to finally get there! I reach a goal I had set for myself! I felt like I could reach any goal I set myself given time and determination...

Skip forward a few weeks, throw in a weekend away, being sick yet again and a couple of really stressful weeks that I could hardly cope with, and here I am feeling down on myself again as I have gained some of the weight I had worked so hard to lose.

Seriously! What is wrong with me? Why do I keep sabotaging myself?!

All I know to do is to head back to my Weight Watcher's meeting on Monday and get back to tracking everything I eat - just keep going!

Sometimes I really wish I could separate my head and emotions from the rest of my body. It is a cruel  cycle I keep getting sucked into - somehow - someday - I am going to break it! I am!

[photo by Erin McCown]

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

How to Love Someone with Depression

I have struggled with depression in varying severity since I was 8 years old. It is a hereditary condition on my Father's side of the family - but beyond that, I am just of the "melancholic" type of personality.

Over the years I have had a number of periods of severe depression. It's a hard thing to deal with. I also understand it is a hard thing for the friends and family of those with depression to know how to address.

Recently I saw this illustration on facebook. It brought tears to my eyes. It so very perfectly expresses how to care and love for someone with depression...


If you are the loved one of someone with depression, I hope this helps you understand how to help them, because chances are, in the moment, they don't even know what they need. I know I never do.

Now, of course, there does come a point in every period of depression, where as much as the person doesn't want it, there needs to be a little push towards the outside "real" world again. But, in those deepest, darkest days being together in a "nest" might be just what is needed.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Weight Watchers Australia / New Zealand Healthy Life Awards Gala 2013

Weight Watchers Australia / New Zealand recently held their annual Healthy Life Awards Gala for 2013. It was a night of celebration recognising those who have had remarkable success in creating a healthy life for themselves with the help of the Weight Watcher's program. I attended the gala last year and was very excited to be invited this year. I was so looking forward to an amazing night of meeting great people and being utterly inspired! Unfortunately, I was unwell on the night, so I was unable to make it, but I will be sharing with you some of the events of the night and introducing you to some of the 2013 winners!

The night of glamour and celebration was held at Slide, Surry Hills and looked it had a trendy vintage flair. The Girls in Pearls, Guys in Ties theme saw guests dressed to the nines and ready for a wonderful night of entertainment which included performances by the talented Mahalia Barnes [Weight Watchers' Celebrity Ambassador] and Darren Percival and some incredible aerial acrobatics, which I am sure would have been breath-taking!

Then, it was on with the awards! The winner of the Family of the Year award was sisters Amy Freeman and Kirsty McGregor from Michelton who lost 66 kilos together. As they attended their Weight Watchers meeting, the sisters learned the long-term lifestyle benefits of learning healthy habits that they were then also able to teach their families. Both families now enjoy eating healthily and have become involved in playing sports.

Commenting on their weight-loss success and win, Amy said: Kirsty and I both knew we needed to lose weight and lead a healthier lifestyle, not only for us, but for our children. We knew we needed to set a good example for our kids because the way we live our lives as individuals affects them. The lifestyle changes we’ve made since joining the program has definitely had a positive impact on our families, as our kids naturally became involved with our new healthy routines.
“We’re really excited to take home the title of Weight Watchers ‘Family of the Year’ and hope that our story can inspire others and show them that you don’t have to start a weight loss journey on your own!” she added. 

The Business and Consumer Services Lending team from Westpac Concord West signed up to Weight Watchers At Work after recognising the need to foster a workplace environment that values people’s health and wellbeing.

Since joining only six months ago, 244 Westpac staff members have joined Weight Watchers At Work, shedding an incredible 757 kilos collectively. The impact on staff has been profound, with the team noticing a significant increase in energy levels at work benefitting on both a personal and professional level.

Commenting on the company’s triumph, Westpac employee Renee Depares says:
Since the program has been in place, there has been a real buzz and uplift in energy in the office. The program has created healthy competition and built strong relationships between teams that don’t even work together! They are loving the results and this happiness is reflected positively in their work.
“Staff have also welcomed the ongoing fruit deliveries and the organised lunch-time walks, with the program and individual successes becoming strong talking points amongst the team.” 

Anna Van Dyken is the winner of the inaugural Inspiration award, which I introduced to you all recently. Anna was horrified that she had allowed her family's weight to get out of control. Her 10-year-old son was overweight and had become embarrassed by his own appearance. Deciding to lead by example, Anna joined Weight Watchers and began the process of turning her family's health around. Anna, her husband and their son have continued with the program through bankruptcy, losing their home, their business, and her husband being diagnosed with diabetes. Now, the family eats healthily, they enjoy sports and together have lost 87 kilos! Their health is improving and they are teaching their son life-long healthy habits! Now that's inspiring!

The award of Slimmer of the Year 2013 for Australia was awarded to Anita Jurd of NSW. This young mum triumphed over 500 entrants for the award after having lost over 40% of her body weight having lost over 50 kilos. 

"The most significant thing that I have achieved whilst losing 50kilos, is that I have found myself! I know who I am. I know the person that stares back at me in the mirror and I like her! Yes, I run on a treadmill now. Yep, I totally enjoy going shopping and buying size small tops! I love not getting tired on a normal day, as I used to. But nothing will compare to the knowledge that I am a good mother, a good person, a happy person." Anita said.

Congratulations to all the nominees and winners of this years Weight Watcher's Healthy Life Awards! You are all inspiring and deserve the acknowledgement of all your hard work!

I still hope to one, day, be a nominee for these awards myself. I'll keep plodding away at my own efforts to turn my life around to be as healthy and happy as I can make it!

[Weight Watchers Australia has supplied me with a complimentary Unlimited Membership with the understanding that I would blog about my experience with the program. All opinions expressed on this blog are my own and I am speaking from my own experience of the program and/or products] [photos supplied by Weight Watchers]

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Blogging for 4 Years!

Today marks 4 years since I first sat down and wrote my very first blog post! I can't believe how fast, and how slow, the time has gone! Ha ha!

You can read about my blogging journey over on Kaleidoscope blog today!


[Photo from The TomKat Studio]

Monday, September 2, 2013

Weight Watchers Recipe // Broccoli + Bacon Salad

I recently discovered this fabulous recipe for Broccoli and Bacon salad on the Laa Loosh blog. It looked so delicious that I just had to try it. I was sure happy that I did!

The original recipe was based on common American ingredients, which are not-so-common here in Australia, including Jicama and Turkey Bacon, so I have made some small changes. This recipe is good both warm, or cold, so it is perfect for Winter or Summer and is a great low carbohydrate option too.
A light, scrumptious side dish that is handy to have in your recipe box!

Broccoli + Bacon Salad
3 ProPoints per serve
Serves 6
Prep Time: 15 mins

  • 4 cups broccoli, finely chopped
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 6 slices Weight Watchers Rindless 98% Fat Free Bacon, cooked, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup fat free greek yoghurt
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1tsp brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp dried cranberries
  • salt and pepper to taste
1. Whisk garlic, mayonnaise, yoghurt, vinegar and sugar in a large bowl.

Serve Cold:
1. Place broccoli, onion, bacon, and cranberries in a large bowl.
2. Add prepared dressing, salt and pepper and mix to coat salad with dressing.

Serve Warm:
1. Cook broccoli until tender.
2. Cook bacon and keep warm.
3.  Place broccoli, onion, bacon, and cranberries in a large bowl.
2. Add prepared dressing, salt and pepper and mix to coat salad with dressing.

Serve with a lean steak or grilled chicken breast.

[Image from Laa Loosh]

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Riding the Wave // Weight Watchers Update

In my last update, I was telling you all about the first 5 weeks back on the Weight Watchers program. I also mentioned that I had had some great weight loss results, and also that I had been very sick. Well, I got even more sick after that and it resulted in some not-so-great food choices and also meant I missed one of my WW meetings. I was feeling pretty low emotionally and I was at war with myself. I wanted to give up for a while and revert back to my junk food addict ways and as my next meeting approached I was thinking up every excuse I could, not to go.

Then, I reminded myself why I was doing this in the first place. I cannot go back to being as heavy and as unhealthy as I once was, and I fallen back far too close to that for my liking already. I also have a very solid goal I am striving towards. I will be travelling to London next April. I have been dreaming of visiting London since I was about 5 years old. I have always been in love with idea of England, the land of my ancestors, and now, due to some pretty extraordinary circumstances, that dream is coming true!

I am using the deadline of heading off on my London adventure as motivation to get my health in order as much as I possibly can. That includes, but is not exclusive to, my weight loss and fitness level. Being such a big woman, I want to lose as much weight as I can for simple things like fitting into the plane seat more comfortably, and just having less to carry around in general. I am also trying to build up my fitness level so that I can make the most of walking around, seeing the sights etc! April is now only 7 months away! This fact got me back into gear and I headed off to my meeting.

I was glad that I did. I was welcomed with smiling faces and even though I didn't want to step on those scales, I did. It turns out the damage in those two weeks wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, but I had put on weight, which never feels good. My leader was encouraging and sympathetic and inspired me to get back on track this week.

So, it has felt like a riding a wave, navigating the ebb and flow of emotion and thought processes, but I have been back tracking my food this week and I am hoping to have lost some of what I gained, once I step onto those scales on Monday night. 

Here's to hoping I have a smooth ride and don't get dumped under that wave!

[Image by Ewen Charlton]
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