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Runner - Thursday Sep 30, 2004

Weight: 113.5

I am in a real slump with food. I don't know why I've felt so compelled to just eat everything in sight this week, but I'm pretty disgusted with myself.

Ever since the Japanese buffet on Tuesday, I've felt slightly out-of-control around food. Wednesday night, I managed to knock off two rich cookies and a pudding dessert before bedtime. But it gets worse.

Today, I was taken out to lunch by two of my students. I never, ever go out for Italian food, but they had already made reservations. Overall, the meal was okay. Since we all shared 3 big plates of pasta, I managed to pick out the seafood and veggies, but still ate some of the cream sauce on the noodles because I couldn't just ignore the noodles completely. That would have been an insult to them. I don't think I've EVER ordered creamy noodles before. One of the dishes had a tomato sauce, so I tried to eat mostly from that one.

Anyway, I did okay with lunch...but then my student gave me 6 Chinese famous treats...they're kinda like a buttery biscuit filled with a sweet filling. Now, usually I really dislike Chinese desserts. But I tend to like things with sweet fillings, and for some reason, I wanted to try one after lunch. (After they left)

SO...like a true food-addict, I managed to consume 3 of those buttery, fattening bisquits in the span of about 5 minutes...as I was heading home to brush my teeth, for crying out loud! Then, as if that wasn't enough, I went into my kitchen and scraped out the filling of the other 3 bisquits and threw the pasty part away!

Pathetic! That is utterly pathetic. It's not only a waste of good food, it shows a complete lack of control! I am sickened at myself.

My fingers still smell like butter. Isn't it crazy? I don't even LIKE buttery bisquits that much...but for some reason, the filling of these things kept me eating them...until they were all gone.

This behavior is unacceptable. This is the type of thing that I did when I was visiting a therapist for my crazy obsessions with food. I have slipped a lot this week, and I'm not sure why. Stress? Maybe. But that should be no excuse.

My stomach hurts, I'm way over my calorie limit for the day, and I'm sitting at my desk, unable to concentrate on work.

Why does food exert such control over my life? This is ridiculous. I need a reality check and I need to get BACK ON TRACK.

Or my 113.5 pounds will go right back up to where it was several months ago! I'll be knocking on the door of 120 and feeling miserable.

Tomorrow, I am going to have a better, more positive entry. I need a positive entry. It's been too long since I've had a really good day....

Becca27 on 09/30/2004:
You've been eating out a lot, and that never makes healthy dieting easy. Try to switch gears and start fresh from this moment. Have a great workout today - challenge yourself and that will make you feel better. Keep brushing your teeth - that worked for me yesterday. Regarding the pastries, at least you only ate the filling - it could have been worse. The good news is that they're gone now. I do empathize with you- I feel like food controls my life every minute of the day. Hang in there and I hope today is much better - stay away from restaurants!!

borntocry on 09/30/2004:
Poor Runner! It must be hard for you to eat out all the time, yet you show such amazing self-control. When I eat out it's a horrific sight!

As for the treats, I think you do have a problem. I know I'm not the best person to give advice (far from it), but perhaps you should try to allow yourself guilt-free treats from time to time. In my opinion, this might prevent you from viewing treats as a sort of forbidden pleasure. Whenever we come to view anything that way, its appeal increases. You seem to blame yourself not just when you overdo it, but whenever you have anything sweet, even when it's a normal-sized helping of a perfectly acceptable treat, like that sundae you had on your anniversary (if I remember correctly).

I have a major sweet tooth, like you, and what I've started doing recently is allowing myself treats on the weekend, because I have lunch at home on weekends so I can make up for the treats by having a very light lunch, or sometimes no lunch at all. I know it doesn't sound healthy at all, but since I started doing this I've actually been able to keep my calorie intake quite low over the weekends, and still appease my cravings for cereal and baked treats. And it actually helps me eat more healthily during the week, because I know I can get in my sugar quotient over the weekend.

legcramps on 09/30/2004:
If we could control our whole lives, we'd all be in much better shape, wouldn't we? Unfortunately, that's not the way it works. Well, get on the wagon and make a fresh start today! You can do it! And, you know, at least thinking about what goes in your mouth is better than not thinking about it. Imagine what we could consume in a day if we had no conscience about what we were eating? Don't beat yourself up for the slip-up, just move on.

geevee on 09/30/2004:
I'm amazed at how well you've controlled your weight considering the many times you eat out during the week. I doubt I'd be able to come close to what you do.

I definitely think there is something to this idea of screwing up royally one day, and then losing it. It's happened to me too many times. That's why I haven't used my 20% discount at the Biltmore for either a breakfast or lunch at the Courtyard (lush landscaping w/palms, a tinkling fountain, birds singing, music in the background - SO lovely!). The buffets are out of the question for me. I'd have to get my money's worth and I'd overdo it. Now I'm considering the in-house baked pastries in the Continental Breakfast. Control is the issue and keeping it. It's just not automatic that you get it back after one bad day, so I know what you're saying about that Japanese buffet.

Limiting yourself to ONLY one goodie a day is major for you. It's like me having only one beer. It's easier for me not to have any and stick to the red wine.

You know what's involved and what you have to do. You'll do it.

subway girl on 09/30/2004:
You have the right attitude, now don't lose the motivation! You can do it! You can get right back on track. Just stay positive.

I COMPLETELY understand what you mean about the little buttery pastries. My room mate has a bag of cookies in our room that up until 2 days ago I never touched. Until she said "feel free to help yourself, I'll never eat them all". Oh boy. I didn't want to eat the whole cookie so when she wasn't here I picked out all the chocolate chips of several cookies and ate them, throwing the rest of the cookie away. I also feel discusted with myself after I do something like that. A while ago I used to analyze everything before I even put it in my mouth. I would sit, look at it, and ask myself "do you NEED this?" "is this going to help you lose weight, or keep you from losing?" "if you eat this, how are you going to feel physically?" "how are you going to feel about yourself?" Most of the time really thinking about what was going in my mouth worked. I don't know why I stopped doing that, but I think I will start again! I'm sure you will bounce right back, be strong, and stay positive!!!

Runner - Tuesday Sep 28, 2004

Weight: 113.5

Well, a pound and a half "gain" isn't too bad...even though I'm disappointed that all my exercise couldn't just wipe away the damage...but maybe this gain is temporary, too. I fluctuate so much that I just can't tell anymore! But Becca27 is right...after eating out at a buffet, I get that "I want to binge on lots of food" desire out of my system for awhile! And I'm even more motivated than ever to eat less and move more.

I was supposed to go out to lunch today with a friend, but I invited her to my house instead. That way, we can eat salads, cottage cheese, and fruit. If that's not enough for her, she can have a sandwich. But eating at home allows me to eat my own food, and I totally prefer that to eating out.

borntocry on 09/29/2004:
Hi Runner! Thanks for your advice on running shoes. My shoes seem pretty comfortable but they were also pretty cheap. If I actually start running regularly and seriously then I will invest in more expensive shoes. Do you have any suggestions? I wouldn't want to spend a lot of money on something that isn't good.

As for weighing myself, it looks like I won't be able to do it this weekend, because I'll be out of town. Maybe next weekend? My clothes don't feel any looser, though. I don't know what it is about them, but they never seem to feel any looser...

Runner - Tuesday Sep 28, 2004

Weight: 112.0

I'm enjoying being back at 112...for at least one day! :) The "weight gain" yesterday was definitely water retention, but if I don't gain at least something from today, I'll be quite shocked!

I went to the Japanese buffet today, and even though I tried to make smart selections with what I ate, I still walked away very full. I enjoyed the sushi, grilled veggies, and soup very much, but I also helped myself to some rice and cold noodles, a big serving of ice cream and hot fudge sauce, 2 mini cakes, and some dim sum. Not to mention several bites of fried foods (tempura) that I couldn't resist. I think the dessert probably racked up at least 600 calories. I just love hot fudge sauce!

It's crazy, but when I'm paying $20 to eat, I always feel the need to eat my money's worth! SO I probably did just that.

My only consolation is that because today was a holiday, I had enough time to do a long run this morning, and I managed an hour and a half. That had to burn a few calories! Then I ate a small bowl of cereal and had the buffet for a late lunch. After the buffet, I went on an almost 2-hour hike with my husband, so I had a total of 3 1/2 hours of exercise today. I haven't eaten anything yet, and I only plan to have a little snack before bedtime.

So even though I overdid it for lunch, I'm hoping that all the exercise will help me out. When I do eat big meals, I prefer to eat them early in the day so I have the rest of the day to stay active. I hate going to bed feeling really full! Ugh!

But I also don't like the feeling of having my stomach stretched out so much after a big meal...and feeling so bloated! So I'm glad these types of meals are few and far in between!

The rest of the week should be easier...I hope!

legcramps on 09/28/2004:
One day at a time! When I concentrate on what i'm doing right now, I surprise myself by how well I do sometimes! Then you look back a week or two later and you think - how the heck did I manage to do so well for that long! Nice work on the exercise! An hour and a half is a long run! How far did you actually go?

Becca27 on 09/28/2004:
The buffet sounds like it was yummy. No matter what you did there, it's better than that other meal at your friend's house. Sometimes it's great to splurge and get it out of your system - now you'll be ready to eat healthier again. Your exercise, alone, will make up for anything you ate. 3 1/2 hrs???? I wish I could eat bigger meals and have them fulfill me for longer periods. My h "snakes" up, but I'm a cow. I need to graze all day long. Buffets are a waste of money for me, unless we stay at them all day. It's great that you guys can go on hikes together. We love to hike, but with kids, we don't get to do it too often. We have a trip planned October 9th that I'm excited about. Keep up the great work!

Runner - Monday Sep 27, 2004

Weight: 114.0

I'm back to 114, so I know for sure that my weight fluctuates easily. Unfortunately, I didn't make very smart choices with my dinner last night. My Chinese friends took us to a wonderful dim sum restaurant, and the food was very good...not very greasy at all. But steamed dumplings are still full of calories, and I probably had 8-10 different kinds of dim sum. I also dunked everything in soy sauce, so I was a bit bloated this morning when I woke up!

I shouldn't have weighed myself, but I did...and I guess I should be glad it wasn't worse. However, it's still discouraging to see the two pounds come back so easily.

I've done well today, though. I had to be gone for lunch and knew that I would be given a typical "Chinese lunch box" full of greasy food, so I packed my own lunch and enjoyed a high-fiber, low-fat, and filling lunch. It took an extra 15 minutes to prepare, but it was worth it.

Tomorrow is a big holiday, so it will be one more opportunity for me to over-indulge on food...I am dining out at a very nice Japanese restaurant. (all-you-can-eat sushi) I absolutely love sushi, but it's hard not to overeat when there are incredible food choices everywhere! And they even have the famous Movenpick ice cream! Heaven help me! Temptation is everywhere!

I plan to go for a very long run in the morning, eat just a tiny bit of breakfast, enjoy the sushi buffet for lunch, and then go for a long hike in the afternoon.

Why is dieting so hard? Why do I have to think about it so much? The people I dined with last night just ate whatever they wanted...they didn't care if it was deep fried or not. And even though I didn't eat the deep fried stuff, I still ate too much. It's discouraging sometimes. I will never fully enjoy a meal out, ever. I don't think it's possible. But I do fully enjoy being 114 pounds, so I guess that's the tradeoff. It's better than being 152 pounds! I will NEVER get up to that weight again. (I hope not, anyway!)

*********** UPDATE---I just had dinner and was doing fine until dessert. And then I just gave in to the temptation to eat some sweets and ate a bunch of junk I didn't even want!

It started with a small red bean mooncake...those dumb mooncakes that really don't taste good at all. And red bean? I can't believe I ate it! I think it's because I warmed it up in the microwave so it tasted better...like a fresh pastry. Of course, now it's sitting like a rock in my stomach!

Then I managed to eat a small brownie with some peanut butter and finished my little sugar-binge off with 3 tbsp. of marshmallow cream and a spoonful of Heath bits.

Ugh! What got into me?

I enjoyed a nice, healthy dinner and then lost it. It was another one of those "800 calories in 5 minutes" binges.

I'm writing it down, feeling rather ashamed, in the hopes that a little accountability will keep me from doing it again.

Becca27 on 09/27/2004:
I was thrilled to see you write that you enjoy being 114lbs.!!! That's being positive. Scale fluctuations are not a true measure - u probably had a lot of salt in that Chinese dinner - causing water retention. You were smart to troubleshoot and pack your own lunch. I love love love Japanese food. At least, with it, you have great healthy choices. If you are going to overeat, Sushi's the way to do it. Why is dieting so hard? Well, for me, it's hard because I'm trying to break an addiction and years of bad habits. I'm truly attempting to remove the idea that I'm "on" a diet, because that means I can go "off" it. I want to change my habits, and be a healthier person - so that eventaully, it's just who I am. I'm dreaming, I know. I can't imagine the day I don't long for ice cream and chocolate and pies.

Princess_Teacup on 09/27/2004:
Writing everything down here really, really helps me. I have actually not eaten things because I didn't want to make a record of it. It makes it really difficult to gloss over in my own mind.

I'm amazed by the number of temptations you manage to negotiate. You BAKE! You go out for Dim Sum! I'd be 152. I can't even be in the same room as peanutbutter. You're amazing.

My whole take on the frustrations of dieting is that when I was 176 or 146 or 136 I was obsessed with my weight. It will always be a preoccupation. I'd rather be 116 and preoccupied, frankly. And it isn't as though it's ruining my life. I'm actually very happy with my life and feel very blessed. This is just one thing that I would like to change that I have the power to change so I might as well make a serious effort.

geevee on 09/27/2004:
No wonder those two unwanted pounds returned after all that salty soy sauce. It's just water retention. It's a good thing you had a healthy dinner to make up for the after dinner splurge. Talk about overdoing it, in addition to my regular 200 cal./1oz. portion of walnuts, I helped myself to a couple hundred more cal. by eating the fancy mixed nuts (no peanuts). I just started chewing and found it so hard to stop. Thank God! I didn't think about the dark chocolate Hershey bar hidden away in a drawer! That would have been total disaster.

Even though we do seem to obsess on eating, if we didn't we'd be right back up there in size 14's. I look at it as the price to pay. We do have to be so careful to allow ourselves those indulgences that bring so much pleasure.

I don't think I could do as well as you do eating out, though the last time I ate at this barbecue place where every order includes a huge amount of fries, I told the waitress not to bring me any - just the meat, NO bun or fries. I didn't miss either. That was a small success story. Another one was when I broke down and went to Checkers, but didn't order their fries with my burger, and their fries are the BEST! Maybe I'm slowly learning how to handle this situation.

borntocry on 09/27/2004:
Sorry to read about the sugar binge! Hmm. Maybe you didn't have enough to eat for dinner? Maybe you should have allowed yourself a little more... or maybe even a little dessert... that might have stopped you from going overboard...?

I've found that sometimes if I deprive myself of something I really want, I end up eating a lot of things which I don't actually want at all, to try to make up for it. And then they don't actually make up for it, so I eventually end up being unable to resist the original temptation and giving in to that as well. Like maybe you felt like having the brownie all along but had the mooncake instead, and then went ahead and had the brownie too...?

Thanks for the comment, by the way. I love the thought of you putting the starers in their place, and in their native language too! Do you really think I should weigh myself again? I've been thinking about it but I'm so worried that I'll find out I weigh 125 or something and then I'll fall into a deep depression and that will be the end of all my good intentions...

Runner - Sunday Sep 26, 2004

Weight: 112.0

I just had to post today because I somehow "lost" two pounds since Friday. The weekends are always good to me! Why? I'm not quite sure...I think it's a combination of getting more sleep and eating less. I usually eat less on the weekends for some reason. I think I also get more exercise since I have more time for a "long run." Whenever I run for more than an hour, my appetite is pretty low for most of the day....crazy, but true.

I did indulge in some good butterscotch pudding (sugar free) with some chopped Heath bits mixed into it...oh, yum!

But I know that my "loss" will likely disappear by Wednesday. I am dining out tonight, too, so I'm sure that will pose some sort of challenge. I'm at the mercy of my Chinese hosts, so I will likely have little say in what I order. Here, everything is done "family style," so people rarely order their own dishes. We all share everything. And since my Chinese is terrible, I don't bother to try ordering a dish...someone else always orders.

I'm looking forward to a good week, but it does have its challenges. I have several meals out or with friends, but at least I'm starting the week off at a lower weight than I ended it!

borntocry on 09/26/2004:
Hey Runner!

Congratulations on that loss! I think I'd be willing to be 112 lb. on the weekends and 114 during the week. Sounds pretty good to me!

Thanks for the comment you left me. Yes, you must understand what my poor boyfriend/husband has to go through with all the anti-American "jokes" he has to put up with at work and at basketball. He actually isn't a patriotic or nationalistic person at all, but in a way that makes it seem even more unfair that he has to put up with all these insults based on his nationality.

I really feel for you with this new move coming up. Is it going to be harder for you to find imported and low-fat products in the new city?

geevee on 09/26/2004:
I KNEW you wouldn't keep those two pounds! Isn't it amazing the effect that two unexplained pounds can have on your mental outlook? They simply ruin your entire day, or few days as the case may be.

The good part of those Chinese communal meals is that you can get away with not eating too much. Since you only put a little on your plate at a time you can "nurse" your meal. Wouldn't it be nice if somehow steamed vegetables not swimming in oil are served?

Becca27 on 09/26/2004:
If the weekends are always good to you, just weigh yourself on the weekends! Keep up the great work and have a wonderful week.

Runner - Thursday Sep 23, 2004

Weight: 114.0

Last night I had dinner at a friend's house. She served meatloaf, noodles, chicken wings, real ice cream, and warm chocolate chip cookies. Everything was so good, and none of it is stuff that I eat on a regular basis. I haven't had meatloaf in years, and I never eat noodles. (too starchy) And chicken wings? I've probably had 5 whole chicken wings in my whole life.

So even though I tried to just eat enough to be polite, I still felt guilty afterwards. It all tasted really good. But even though I was careful the whole day and got extra exercise, my weight was still at 114 today. I just can't eat like that and lose weight. It's impossible, even if I exercise!

Being invited over to someone's house is so tricky, though...I never want to be rude, but I feel stupid when I take small servings, too. Especially since most people think I need to eat more. (since they weigh more than I do)

Anyway...I hope the scale is nicer to me this weekend. It's totally unfair that I can gain weight so easily...I wish I would have never seen the number "111" on Sunday. That gave me a false sense of hope that I had actually lost a couple of pounds.

If I ever stopped exercising, I don't know what would happen to my weight. I usually eat between 1700-2000 calories every day, but maybe I should try to keep it around 1500. I just know that with training for a race, I have to make sure I have enough carbs and protein in my body so I can perform well.

geevee on 09/23/2004:
I swear, the less one weighs, the longer it takes to lose weight. I was looking at my track record today and was SO disgusted with the last two months, despite the fact that my standstill was not due to my eating but lack of exercise because of my bum knee acting up. I'm at the point where a half pound is a BIG deal! A WHOLE pound? WOW! You are in the same situation.

I understand the guilt you are feeling from eating the food you did because you normally don't eat it. I'm already thinking ahead to Thanksgiving and trying to plot my strategy. This is sick, right? No, it's just the way it is! The family dinner will be it that day. Nothing else. The same goes for Christmas Eve.

The slightest alteration in my diet will result in a gain. Say I use mayo instead of mustard. That would mean a half pound gain. Am I paranoid? Yes. And with good reason. DD's has really straightened out the warped thinking that got me overweight in the first place.

You've been successful at this FAR LONGER than I, and I haven't even reached my goal! So when you're concerned about a two pound fluctuation, I heed your concern! You KNOW what you're talking about! My past experiences showed how that deviation results in totally sabotaging what one has accomplished.

So, by all means, continue being upset about these gains. You KNOW what will happen if you're not. Oh, how I would LOVE to be 113 again! I'm trying.

Princess_Teacup on 09/24/2004:
The other day a friend of mine (a male of normal weight) suggested that if I really wanted to lose weight what I should do was cut down on white bread and potatoes. I laughed. I wanted to know when he'd ever seen me eating white bread or potatoes.

I'm sorry that the scale is causing you so much frustration. I could tell you all the reasons you SHOULDN'T be so frustrated but instead I'll just say that the things in life that are worth doing, worth committing yourself too, are often very, very hard.

Becca27 on 09/24/2004:
What a challenge! If I was presented that meal, I think I would cry. Are you sure it wasn't a calculated way of trying to fatten you up? Doesn't your friend know you're a healthy eater? I do encourage you to put your scale away. In one of your entries you said you liked the way your clothes fit. Use that. Glycemic index /water retention/bowels/ all affect the scale. Try it for one week. Give it to your hubby and tell him to hide it from you. Your caloric intake is very healthy for an athlete. Keep up the great work. You're not going to get heavy again. You aren't the same person you were before. Be happy!!

borntocry on 09/25/2004:
Hi Runner Girl!

Are you actually trying to lose yet more weight? I thought you were happy at this weight! You said that all your clothes fit you and that you feel good about yourself...

Maybe you should just concentrate on training for your race right now and work on the weight loss afterwards? You might even be building muscle because of your training and that could be preventing you from seeing a loss. What do you think? Everyone I know who weighs 110 lb. or under does no exercise at all. It makes me wonder if perhaps you need a certain amount of muscle to be able to exercise and that makes you weigh a little more.

Well, anyway, I will support you no matter what you want to do!

Runner - Wednesday Sep 22, 2004

Weight: 114.0

Wow, I feel so blessed! Thanks to all of you who left such encouraging, thoughtful, insightful, and helpful comments on my entry! I really appreciate your kindness...the support here is wonderful.

I wish I could say that the scale was back to 113 today, but it's not. However, I made smart choices yesterday with food, so I have nothing to be ashamed about. I even made a HUGE "death by Chocolate" cake for our staff birthday party and only had a tiny piece of it. People were lined up for seconds before I could even take one bite!

I'm going to have another doctor's appointment soon about my wacky menstrual cycle. I'm on my fourth doctor already since I've moved quite a bit in the last few years. All of them say the same thing...and I did have a significant amount of bone loss several years ago when my period first stopped. But after I took some bone-building drugs (stuff for menopausal women!), started lifting more weights, went on birth control, and made sure I got enough calcium, my bone density has increased.

I guess it's just hard because a lot of doctors don't think that being this thin is important...they say it's more important to be at a body weight that will "jump start" my period. Well, selfishly, I will stay at this body weight for as long as I can. I've worked hard enough to get here, I don't look like a skeleton, and I like how my clothes fit!

Anyway...I'm going to a friend's for dinner tonight, so I hope she doesn't serve a highly-caloric meal. She has a taste for rich food...and when I've been to her place before, it's hard to resist all the goodies that I don't normally buy.

Geevee...I hope you're right---I hope my body is hanging on to these stubborn two pounds because it's resisting a loss that will take place soon!


On another food-related note, Mid-Autumn Festival starts next week, so everyone is eating the traditional Moon Cakes. Those things are packed with lard or butter and have hundreds of calories...although some of them are gross and full of cooked egg yolks, a few of them taste pretty good, so it's hard not to eat them when they're everywhere! I just got another box of them today from some students. They're expensive, sweet, and probably deadly. (to the dieter)

I'm going to just give them away or eat a small bite of each flavor...and then give them to my husband to finish. He can handle the extra calories, but I can't.

Becca27 on 09/23/2004:
Wow! Can I have the recipe for the death by chocolate cake? Just Kidding! - It sounds like you really are trying to take care of yourself - with the bone-density drugs and birth control pills. If you like the way your clothes fit, and you feel healthy and strong, don't let a # on a scale drag you down (physician heal thyself). We face challenges every day with so much crap all around us. Yesterday, I didn't go to a party I was invited to - in part- because I was afraid of the food that was going to be there. It's also extremely uncomfortable to only have veggies on your plate while others have theirs stacked with pastries. When people ask me why I'm not eating, I feel like I have to explain - to which they usually reply "oh, you don't need to lose weight..." You have worked extremely hard and it is a daily battle. Be healthy and strong and happy. Face each day as it comes and lean on those who love you. I have problems with my cycle,too, and I know that I should go on the pill for regularity, but I won't do it because the hormones will make me gain even more weight. I don't know if I'm risking my health, but I hate going to my gyn because she always tells me the same thing - I don't want to hear it.

geevee on 09/23/2004:
Supposedly osteoporosis is non-reversible was the accepted thinking, and then that new medicine came out for it that you mentioned. A friend of mine had taken the bone density test and was found to have osteoporosis but she couldn't handle the drug. Instead she cured herself by diet alone. Her doctor didn't think it could be done and was very surprised. So much isn't known and a good part of what is known today will be rejected in the future. No one knows your body like you doYour bmi is in the category of those who live the longest. There are no fat old ladies. They're only trim ones.

Runner - Tuesday Sep 21, 2004

Weight: 114.0

I tell you, scale fluctuations are so crazy! How could I be 114 today, when I was 111 on Sunday? I ate pretty well yesterday...and got plenty of exercise! So this is weird. Maybe I'm retaining water for some reason...I do feel bloated.

I really am content at 114...I never thought I would get there. But once I've seen the scale go down, it's so easy to get all excited about losing more. I really don't want to become obsessive about it...I know that my body shouldn't go under 110 pounds.

One thing that concerns me is my lack of periods. I've been told it's due to too much running and "low body fat" or something like that (my body fat is at least 20%), but I get upset whenever someone (especially a doctor) suggests that I put on a few pounds.

Don't they know how hard it is for me to maintain this weight? I've worked so hard to lose 40 pounds...why would I just want to gain back the weight when I feel GOOD? I like feeling thin! Is that wrong? It shouldn't be! I'm healthier than I've ever been...and stronger, too!

But I am concerned about my periods...they have all but disappeared...and trust me, I know enough about bone loss and osteoporosis and losing estrogen...I don't need any more lectures about all that stuff! I've been to doctors, had bone density scans, taken estrogen pills, been put on birth control, etc.

But the fact remains that the doctors think I don't weigh enough. So if I ever want to have children (and I'm only a few years away from being 30), I need to get serious about getting my menstrual cycle on track.

But that means I might have to gain some weight. And it's hard enough for me to see the scale move up two pounds in two days...when that happens, I kick myself back into high-gear and try to get back to where I was.

I don't know why I wrote about all this today...it's kind of personal stuff, I know. But I feel like some of you will understand...and you won't be the ones who just tell me to gain weight because it's "good for me." You understand the struggles I go through on a daily basis with food. You know how hard it is to lose weight and keep it off. And since I've kept it off for 6 years and built up an iron will to remain thin, the last thing I want to hear is that I need to gain some weight.

It's too easy for me to gain weight! The last three days proves that! What if I start gaining and can't stop??????

Princess_Teacup on 09/21/2004:
A year or so ago I read an article (in the New Yorker, perhaps?) about a long distance runner who decided to have a baby. She hadn't been having periods but stopped training, gained a little weight started getting her period, got pregnant, had a baby, went back to training and lost the weight.

I think that you should keep doing what your doing. It seems like you are very healthy and it seems like, with some amount of medical oversight, you should stay perfectly healthy the weight you are now. I, for one, understand your frustration and your fear and think you're doing the right thing.

borntocry on 09/22/2004:
Hi Runner,

I agree with Princess Teacup. I don't think you should worry too much about your lack of periods. From what I've read, it's quite normal in runners. I would guess that it's due to the running and not the weight. Your weight doesn't seem to be dangerously low to me. The effort you have to put in to maintain your weight does seem to indicate to me that you weigh less than you naturally would, but I don't see anything wrong with that, if you're willing to put in the extra effort to maintain it.

I doubt that this will make it harder for you to have a baby. When the time comes, you will probably have to cut down on the running a bit, and of course you will have to be prepared to gain a little bit of weight, but afterwards you can always go back to the way you were. As for the risk of osteoporosis, you could consider taking calcium pills, if you feel you may not be getting enough calcium in your diet. I bought a bottle of chewable vanilla-flavoured calcium pills and I have one from time to time to supplement my diet.

Have more faith in yourself, though. There's no reason for you to start gaining weight and find yourself unable to stop. I'm sure the good habits you have developed over the years will not desert you so quickly!

Thanks for your advice about running, by the way. I also feel that running in cold weather will not make me sick. It's an old wives' tale, anyway, that being out in the cold can make you sick. Exposure to viruses and bacteria is what makes you sick. In fact, I was feeling a bit under the weather last week and it seemed to clear up completely after I went running. I actually feel that the exercise may have helped boost my immune system!

I'm going to take your advice and not worry too much about my speed. I read quite an interesting website yesterday about training for marathons (well, three miles sure feels like a marathon to me!) and the writer said that no-one goes for record-breaking times during mere training sessions. I figure my speed will hopefully improve gradually anyway, but right now I'll just work on my stamina. Thanks!

Becca27 on 09/22/2004:
Have you gotten a second opinion? What does your OB say? Is she/he someone you trust? If your body fat is really above 20%, you should be fine. When was the last time you had it checked? Listen to people who know and love you. Find Dr's you can trust. It's hard when people tell us what we don't want to hear, but sometimes we don't see ourselves the way we truly are.

geevee on 09/22/2004:
You have a good point there, about starting to gain and not being able to stop. That has happened to me on every single diet I've ever been on. After losing so much weight I'd gain a pound or two. Then it was like a "click" ; new mode. Up we go! And that was the end of it! To me there's a momentum involved and it's very easy to lose it. Like now, even though it seems as if I'm on maintenance I'm slowly losing. Perhaps it's only a pound, but it's a pound!

About your two pound gain. That happens to me sometimes when I'm about to drop a pound or two. It's like my body is holding onto the weight for dear life, and then after a day or so, the weight goes down.

I've read about professional athletes and gymnists in particular who lose their periods while strenously training but then get them back when they let up on training.

I didn't know you've maintained your loss for 6 long years! That's something! As the society gals say, "You can never be too thin."

legcramps on 09/22/2004:
You wrote a hard entry for me to comment on today, Runner! I don't know what to say, as i've never been in the position that you're in.

I've never worked so hard to get somewhere only to have someone else tell me that all that hard work was worthless. But I think I know how you feel, although I won't pretend to have gone through anything like this. I could sit and argue pros and cons either way for hours, but the moral of this particular story is that you need to make a choice. And whatever choice you make, we will still be here to support it!

I think you've gotten a few great comments on your entry, and all of them discuss great points, but you need to think about your life and where you're going and where you want to be in a few years.

Take care today and stay strong!

Runner - Monday Sep 20, 2004

Weight: 113.0

The weekend bliss is over. (sigh) I actually saw the number "111" on Sunday. I was so startled that I stepped off the scale, stood on it again, and saw 111. Then I picked up my 15-pound dumbbell, stood on the scale again, and saw 126. So I was really 111!

But today I'm back up to 113. (sigh)

I did have some candy, cake and a cookie yesterday, but I got in my workout plus a 45-minute hike and I also lifted weights. My dinner was low-cal, but those dumb sweets kill me every time. I was craving sweets because I'm rather stressed at work. My hubby and I may have to move to another part of the island...we just found this out. Living overseas is already a challenge, but now we may have to uproot and move to another city where even less people speak English. So I probably ate an extra 500-800 calories of complete junk yesterday, and I guess my exercise just wasn't enough to get rid of the extra calories and carbs.

Anyway...I've vowed to do better today. I have to bake the big birthday cake tonight, but I won't be able to dig into it since that would be completely unprofessional! So hopefully the cake will be perfect and intact when I serve it tomorrow...

subway girl on 09/20/2004:
That is really great that you saw 111 on the scale over the weekend! I hate when the scale taunts you like that though. Don't worry, with your hard work and dedication soon that will become a regular number! Keep up the good work, and don't worry about the 113, I don't think you'll be there long!

borntocry on 09/21/2004:
Ooh, Runner, I'm so jealous of you! I can't believe you weighed 111 lb. over the weekend. You must be so tiny!

Thanks for all your advice on running-related issues. I'm definitely going to take your advice and start stretching after I run. I've noticed that my legs feel very stiff when I start running and yesterday they were really hurting quite a bit. So hopefully stretching both before and after will help.

Once it gets colder I'm also going to follow your suggestion of wearing a short-sleeved shirt with a long-sleeved shirt over it. I'm not exactly sure what wind-breaker type pants are - are they the type made from that material that makes a kind of crinkly sound when you walk? Because if so, that's what I'm already using.

I'm actually the opposite of you - I don't get hot quickly at all. I'm always one of the people staring at lightly-dressed winter runners, hehe. I've never actually seen people running in coats and heavy leggings, though... do they really? Maybe it just doesn't get that cold here.

legcramps on 09/21/2004:
If you keep up the great work, you'll see 111 again in no time! You're doing really great, and usually when that happens, there's always some sort of new obstacle to overcome. I hope you can get through this one without too much damage to your spirit and your health! Think of the move as an opportunity to learn more about the culture that you live in. Think of it as a fresh start!

Runner - Sunday Sep 19, 2004

Weight: 112.0

Saturdays are always good weigh-in days. I think it's because I often eat less Friday nights due to my work schedule (I usually eat early dinners and a small snack before bed), and then I get more sleep, which allows my food to digest well before I weigh myself Saturday morning. Anyway, I'm usually down a pound, so that's always encouraging! (By Wed., I'm usually up a pound or two, so my joy is often short-lived!)

Anyway, I'm in charge of baking a chocolate cake for a very large group of people...and I want it to be perfect. So in the excuse of needing to practice several recipes, I've been baking a bit. So far, I've done okay, but I currently have a small cake in the oven as "tester," which is precisely why I'm writing in my diary at the moment! I just brushed my teeth, so I still have the minty flavor in my mouth, so that keeps me from wanting to devour the cake when it's done. Instead of just ripping into it, I'm going to cut myself a small piece, set it aside, stick the rest of it in the freezer, and go for a hike!

Now that I've put it all in writing, I hope it helps me stay disciplined. It would be really nice to maintain my current weight, and I don't need to blow it by consuming 1000 calories of cake that I don't really want anyway.

Becca27 on 09/19/2004:
I love to bake, too. I've never baked for more than family or small picnic. I've always been to nervous to get into it more because of the BLT's (bites, licks, tastes) Brushing teeth is a great trick. I hope you have a great hike. My h and I love to hike - with small kids we don't get to do it so much. I'm hoping that this fall, when my parents take my girls for a weekend, we can do part of the Appalachian trail I've had my eye on. It sounds like you have a great plan today - writing it down is always good. Have a great day!

Windsong3 on 09/20/2004:
Wow! Good for you for being strong and not eating that cake up! I hope you have great success in making that special cake for the group of people you are doing that for!

Sounds to me like you are doing fantastic. Motivated and ready to go! Keep it up! Hugs to you! ~~Windsong~~

legcramps on 09/20/2004:
Congrats on the loss! And doing what you mentioned with the cake and the freezer is a great idea! Have fun on your hike and stay strong. You can do it!

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