Food Without Shame

This whole business of not dieting has been interesting.  Here's some things I have taken note of:
  • I don't think about food nearly as much.  Sometimes my stomach will feel acidic and I'll realize that I am physically hungry and Oops!  I forgot to eat and it's been 4 hours. 
  • Since I'm more "in the moment" when I'm eating I notice flavors more.  This has been detrimental to me in a few situations where something is too overpowering to want to continue eating it.  Too sweet, too salty, too bitter, etc. 
  • My cravings, contrary to what I used to wish I could eat, are mostly for salty things or even my recent mouth-watering crave of sauerkraut.  Not having to be constantly concerned with sugars makes me crave it less altogether.
  • I feel much more calm and have a greater sense of well-being because I'm not focusing on where I am falling short or planning for how I can be "better".  I;m not beating myself up over food.
  • I am finding it easier to realize when I am wanting to eat something when I'm not hungry, and noticing when I am eating because of the clock instead of my body's natural signals.  Many times I can even figure out why I want to eat in that moment, and rationalize that the food won't make that emotion go away.
  • I haven't really been starving or overstuffed, but most of the time I can say I feel pretty "normal" which is a good thing to be sometimes!
I'm sure I'll come up with more things the longer I do this.  I do feel pretty good and it really isn't a major struggle.  Am I shrinking?  I don't know and it's OK, my clothes fit, I can walk around with ease and I am happy. 
My younger son (he's 12) was recently diagnosed with Scoliosis and part of his therapy from the chiropractor is to do planks every night.  He is overweight and was really dreading them, so in order to help him along the whole family agreed to do planks with him every night.  He feels like the coach, telling my husband to do it for 2 minutes and my older son to do it for 20 seconds.  He lets me choose how long to do them.  I started out matching his 10 seconds, then I tested myself to see how long I could go and I got to 50 seconds one night, and the next I was still sore from the previous night so I only got 30 seconds, then finally last night I did 60 seconds.  I start shaking at around 20 seconds so the fact I can hold out longer is just sheer determination.  Since this will be part of his long-term therapy, I expect to be improving my times along with him.  I am noticing that it is making my back and hips hurt way less! What an awesome side effect!  Maybe with time it will help my posture too, which is really poor most of the time unless I'm actively thinking about it, which isn't often. 
I am having a lot of heartburn lately, which has been making me cut back on soda, and surprisingly, I don't really ruminate on the cut because it's helping me feel a little better to cut back.  I'm sure my heart and kidneys appreciate it too.  It creates so much less resistance to make dietary changes in this way.  I know I can have a soda whenever I want to, but there are physical consequences that are pretty reliable.  I really don't like how heartburn feels so most of the time I just feel like it's not worth it.  I have a couple each day, some days only 1 depending on how I feel.  I did battle a cold for a week or so, and during that time I drank a boatload of cold water and it was so refreshing and relieving.  I have now started switching from soda to water earlier in the afternoon than I used to.  All good things.  Sure, I have my "off" days when I eat more than I need and I try to figure out why I'm eating all that.  It doesn't mean I always stop eating, but it is easier to stop before I'm in full-out binge mode.  This is big.  This is much more controlled, and using my own body's cues to guide my eating.  It's a little murky in the beginning but it is slowly making more sense.  No restriction, just paying attention.  More thought, less torturing myself in my head.  Less resistance, period.  Feels like a breath of fresh air.  Different than autopilot, which kind of makes me feel like I simply don't care enough about myself to even put thought into what I'm doing, this is more like a freedom and trusting myself to know what's right for me.  Maybe it's intuitive eating?  I haven't looked into that method. 
Anyway, it's going good and I feel fine.  Which is the point of living right?  No guilt, no shame, no beating myself up.  Just breezing through with a grin.  Life is neat!


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