2016.2

Previous: 266lb
Current: 263lb
Loss this week: 0lb
Total loss: 3lb

The number on the scale only tells part of the story. Friday night was particularly boozey complete with kebab at the end of the night. After a night like that I can expect a higher number on the scale for the next couple of days as my body deals with the carnage. At one point I was down to 259lb during the week.

It has been a stressful week though. I’ve been sick and turned to comfort food on monday/tuesday (pizza). Those days also had some bad snacking. Wednesday/thursday were much better, but then Friday came along and was a blow out. I felt like I need to celebrate the end of a tough week and part of meeting that feeling was with drinks and food.

At the time the comfort food may have felt good but it was a short-lived feeling. Perhaps sometimes we need to be ok with feeling “blah” and not trying to do anything about it? In my studying I’m reading about the relationship between positive and negative emotions. In positive psychology there has been a focus on eliminating negative and promoting positive, which is being challenged as the “negative” things can often be opportunities for growth and change (in an ultimately positive direction in terms of wellbeing and individual flourishing). This is slightly different, but wouldn’t it be nice to feel like crap and not try to self-medicate it away? Or at least turn to things that have a net-positive effect in the long-term.

This week I want to work on my “rice and beans” strategy again. I know that if I lock down 2/3 meals then I’m going to post a lost next week.

2016.1

Previous: 266lb
Current: 263lb
Loss this week: 3lb
Total loss: 3lb

Ah, here we go again! This week I rediscovered my old friend the capricious bathroom scale. One day we’re up, the next we’re down, and just when you think you’ve lost or gained for the week, he changes his mind once more! The scale showed a lower number mid-week and there were daily fluctuations, but I’ll take 3lb every time though.

The challenge this week was to focus on the standardisation of meals.

  • Breakfast – 100% consistent. Porridge with chopped banana, with a couple of flat whites coffees.
  • Lunch – mixture of eating at the work canteen – (3 days) and at home (2 days). I ate 1 meal out over the weekend.
  • Dinner – 5/7 meals were “rice and beans” (!) 1 meal out.
  • Snacks – 6/7 days I ate additional pieces of fruit (satsumas and apples). 1 day I ate a cupcake (it was for charity!). On thursday I ate crisps and chocolate from the work vending machine.
  • Alcohol – a bottle of beer and 2 glasses of wine on friday night.

    Breakfast is sorted. I’m happy with the nutrition I get, I like the food and I don’t even think twice about it, my behaviour is fully integrated/automatic.

Rice and beans was a success this week. I cooked the recipe 3 times producing 6 meals. The only day I didn’t eat this meal was Friday when I ate out. It’s easy to prepare, cook and clean. It tastes good enough, it reheats well, and it’s cheap. Longer term it’ll be easy to vary the base recipe to mix it up.

It’s interesting that I was trying to standardise my lunches this week but instead it was my dinners that became “rice and beans” most days. It was nice to come home from a stressful day at work and zap some leftovers in the microwave, or even just cook the dish as it’s so easy. Rice in a pan, chop the onions and start flying them, chop the peppers and add them to the onions, tidy the kitchen, add the beans to the mix. Done – wait for the rice. Mix together. Eat. Snacks and alcohol were good overall. I had one bad day on Thursday when work was getting me down and I hit the vending machine, but otherwise this was a disciplined week.

Next week

More of the same I think. I’m happy to let lunch at work be the little bit of variety in my diet. There’s often a half-decent vegetarian option and perhaps I can mix eating in the canteen with coming back home for some eggs.

Good start.

2016.0

I’m getting back into the habit of posting weekly reflection posts. I’d like to make some lifestyle changes (or tweaks!) in 2016 and I know this is a good way for me to get some honest feedback from myself. It’s particularly useful when I investigate the reasons why I’m not doing the things I want to do. And generally, the process of reflection helps me organise the thoughts in my mind and solidifies my internal narrative. I’ve also enjoyed re-reading some of my old posts and would like to capture “me in my words” at this point in time as well.

Weigh in #2016.0 – starting weight for the new year.

Previous: 266lb
Current: 266lb
Total loss: 0lb

The holiday period has been indulgent but not excessively so. I’m actually fairly pleased that the scale said 266lb this morning.

Next week

The first week back at work. What can I do this week that will help me get to where I want to be? I think standardising my diet was a part of my prior success, I ate a lot of the same meals. I guess taking it to the extreme if you only ate 1 dish every day for breakfast/lunch/dinner, there would be a bunch of “economies of habit”. For example you’d quickly become efficient at preparing that meal, you would remove a lot of decision-making from your daily routine, and I think you’d quickly adapt and get used to eating the same meal. Food shopping would be an easy affair and “what’s for dinner” wouldn’t even be a question that you’d ask. Imagine if you could only eat one dish due to some form of economic or physical restriction (I have a stereotyped picture of people in third-world countries eating rice and beans); If you couldn’t actually eat anything else other than your one dish, do you think you’d have any weight issues? Take out pleasure, choice and desire from the equation, and I think weight-loss is probably easy. This feeds into my “prison theory” – if you locked an obese person in a cage and fed them a controlled diet, giving them no choice in what they ate, then they would lose weight (losing weight isn’t a nutrition problem, it’s a psychological problem). This is kinda what happens with bariatric surgery as well, the stomach is reduced or bypassed so that food cannot be physically taken up.

So, standardising my diet? To an extent I’ve implemented this in my breakfast routine: I eat porridge almost every day. (Funnily enough I also actually had porridge for dinner last night.) I think I could also get on-board with doing this for lunch as well. I’d like to stop spending money on the staff canteen so if I could get into a good “bring my own rice and beans” lunch routine that would help me out financially as well. I found the following recipe and am about to give it a try.

This week is all about rice and beans :D.