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Newlee11 07-20-2011 11:46 PM

The Willpower Count
 
How many times a day do you say no to things you think you really want?

For instance I had to go talk to the woman in our office that keeps an assortment of small candy in a dish on her desk. Every workplace has one of those ladies. Once, while I was in there talking to her for awhile, I counted 4 times that I forgot myself and instinctively started to reach into the bowl but stopped.

When I got home my son was having a pop-tart. I walked to the pantry. I picked up the box, read the calories, put it down, checked to see how many were left, thought about my calories for the day, thought about the nutrition, picked up the box again, pictured the glass of milk I could have with it, thought about how happy I would be if the scales were lower tomorrow, and FINALLY walked away from the box. I count that as all 1 episode.

Later I lazily opened the fridge to see what was in it... saw my roommates pie that she already offered for us to have and wondered when I'm ever going to get out of the habit of opening the fridge without thinking. I got a glass of water and walked away.

So I would call that 5 times but I wasn't paying attention all day. Tomorrow I'm going to keep a tally and report in, and report any time I gave into one of those.

How about you guys? Is this normal? Does it get easier?

Kumochi 07-20-2011 11:57 PM

It's normal and it gets easier as you get in the habit of saying no. I find it's much easier if you have made up your mind you are not going to give in. There are several of my temptations I say no to all the time - such as picking up a chocolate bar and coke every time I go to my local store. This was a habit last year.

Habits you have to be firm with. I find giving in to the odd temptation not as bad as getting back into bad habits. The hard candies (whurthers)are a killer. I usually allow myself 4 when I go to the law library - the librarian keeps them there for us. That's better than my buying them and it's sometimes a pleasant surprise to find one in my briefcase or purse. 20 calories each so I try to remember to log them.

Logging those empty calories can make it easier to refuse them the next time.

Mary

RunbikeSki 07-21-2011 12:20 AM

To me one of the greatest benefits of Fitday is the accountability. Before I started logging, I would take a piece of candy here, a slice of pie there, and frothy frappa-crappa-chino somewhere else and before I even finished it I would have forgotten about it... mindless. Now even when I am not logging religously I still eat mindfully.

BTW, Mary Werther's make sugar free caramels, toffees, and coffee caramels that are not quite calorie free but really quite good. At least good enough to satisfy my occassional sweet tooth.

mecompco 07-21-2011 01:09 AM

It really does get easier. There are food pushers everywhere. You should memorize the simple phrase, "no, thank you". Simply repeat this as many times as needed and the food pusher will eventually give up.

As far as checking the fridge or mindlessly hitting up the candy dish, those are simply habits that will pass. I agree that logging all food is a neccessity. I also find that planning my meals in advance as much as possible is a big help.

Oh, and I NEVER "snack", so that helps.

Regards,
Michael

PS Have you considered ridding the house of crap like Pop-Tarts? I don't think they're really good for anyone, children included. Bad habits can get ingrained in youngsters as well as adults.

Newlee11 07-21-2011 02:10 AM


Originally Posted by mecompco (Post 51528)
It really does get easier. There are food pushers everywhere. You should memorize the simple phrase, "no, thank you". Simply repeat this as many times as needed and the food pusher will eventually give up.

As far as checking the fridge or mindlessly hitting up the candy dish, those are simply habits that will pass. I agree that logging all food is a neccessity. I also find that planning my meals in advance as much as possible is a big help.

Oh, and I NEVER "snack", so that helps.

Regards,
Michael

PS Have you considered ridding the house of crap like Pop-Tarts? I don't think they're really good for anyone, children included. Bad habits can get ingrained in youngsters as well as adults.


I'm glad it gets easier... and thanks for the tips Mary, Pam, and Michael.

To answer your question about getting rid of the bad food in the house, I could get away with that if he was still little, but I'm fighting bigger battles with him right now (thus the stress eating). I also have a 27 year old living here that buys her own food but she's generous and considers it all community food once it's in the house. Basically I'm going to have to make good choices inside my home as well as out and about.

Passing the candy dish is something I have never done before so I'm happy I did it today. I would have hated looking it up on-line to enter it in my diary.

I am "snacking" but they are planned pieces of fruit, raw veggies, or something else to bridge to the next meal. I think the only time I'm not craving something is when I'm asleep.

cjohnson728 07-21-2011 03:27 AM

Hi Newlee, I have a teen boy, too.

Michael does have a point...what's healthy for you is what's healthy for him and the rest of the family, too, but I know that it doesn't happen all at once. Making small changes over time could be helpful. It took us over a year here. I have some ideas if you're interested, but if, as you say, you have bigger battles to fight, perhaps now is not the time to make those changes.

At any rate, my family was extremely cooperative when I was the only one watching what I ate, in the sense that if I asked them to hide something from me, they would, and that helped. It also helped for me to get things like chips in flavors they liked, but I didn't.

For me, some days are harder than others. So I would have to say it gets easier overall, but some days are still a struggle, and I have to be conscious of my impulses and fight them on those days. Other days, no problem at all. Knowing yourself and being mindful are very powerful weapons in that battle. Keep posting, though; it does help. The days I post the most are the ones where I'm fighting the impulses to eat nonstop!

Congrats on passing up the candy today!

kera39 07-21-2011 03:30 AM

well i am new to this, my second day and i do experience what you are talking about

i find myself doing what you describe. i however gave in. i just want this stuff to be gone from my home. the cookies, strudels etc.. they are just fat going to my stomach. i don't want to look like this. i don't want to feel like this. maybe i should count also. because in my mind if i can pass it up 2. 3 or 4 times i am not gonna then give in.

i am ok at work. i have more control. at home, maybe i will try what you did, get water and walk away or maybe i can go exercise.
thank you

RunbikeSki 07-21-2011 09:26 PM

Replacing bad habits with good habits
 
HI all,

Science has demonstrated that rather than just saying "NO" to yourself when you see or think of a food item you really don't need, try to come up with a replacement activity or thought.

I have a really hard time with that bridge between coming home from work and dinner - especially when DH is cooking and I don't have much to do. We tend to eat on the latish side and no amount of begging can change that. It isn't that I am necessarily hungry, but I'm tired, maybe a little bored and in no mood to begin something new. At that time the worst thing for me is think about all the things I CAN'T eat and try to invoke "won't power". No, you can't have cheese, no, peanuts are off limits, and uh-uh, hands off the crackers. Once I go there... well it is all over.

Instead I have to think of a replacement activity. (Believe me I am not always successful). Water the garden, laundry, folding clothes, reading if am in the mood all work well.

Candy dish at work? I have been known to avoid offices. For many years we had a monthly birthday cake celebration for all the employees with birthdays that month. I got something of an anti-social reputation for never attending, even on my own birthday month. But they eventually go over it.

IMO modern life provides way too much exposure to food. I have had to devise ways of avoiding that exposure. You can too. And as others have noted, once you fall into these good habits, it does, indeed, get easier.

Kathy13118 07-22-2011 05:15 PM

I used to find it impossible to pass a McDonald's without stopping to have something to eat. That's not the case anymore. I use fitday to add up my calories every day and it's easy to see how all those visits end up sabotaging my weight loss efforts.

More importantly, I have more freedom to structure my time these days, with the kids living away from home (they are college-age). You would think that having more time to myself, I'd have more time to indulge, but it has worked the exact opposite!

I rationalized in the past that we could all stop for a bite to eat because they had a long day at school and were probably hungry (they never said no to McD's) and that took the pressure off me to have dinner ready for 'starving' kids.

Sometimes, they had afterschool activities, and I knew they would be really busy and not home until much later so they (and I) should grab something NOW.

I think it would have been very difficult to have a firm supper schedule in those days, and now, when I don't even need a firm supper schedule, I find it easier to resist fast food.

I also go to WW, which is one diet that allows you to eat anything - as long as it fits into your points plus limits (calories, basically). So, I do stop at McD's once in a while, and have - ta,daaaaa! - one cheeseburger and a diet coke.


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