Today’s workout: 20 mins ET Level 2, 40 mins weights & abs with trainer.

Today’s walks: once around the block, after both breakfast and lunch.

Results of the fullness experiment: As described on Day 18, I’ve been trying the brisk walk after meals. Walking after breakfast was quite easy, but then my breakfast is very small. Surprisingly, I could feel the difference between walking after breakfast and after the slightly larger meal at lunch. But I also had no trouble walking briskly, so I think I ate an appropriate amount. I will not walk after dinner…too dark, cold, and icy out there these days.

Today’s task: Stop Fooling Yourself

I love this Day! However, the first time I went through the book, I was intimidated by it. Don’t worry…you’re not expected to quit fooling yourself in one day. It will take time. Today’s the day you create the anti-self-delusional Response Card.

Where do you fool yourself that it’s OK to eat something that’s not good for your diet?

• I’ll only eat it just this once. I’ll be good tomorrow.

• It’s just the crumbs.

• I’m too upset (busy, tired, etc.) to worry about what I eat on top of everything else.

• Everyone else is eating it…I deserve to eat it, too.

• I’m celebrating.

• I’ll never get the chance to try this amazing food again.

• I’m craving it, and I’ll end up eating it eventually anyway.

Dr. Beck calls these “fake” reasons for eating. There’s a much longer list in the book. The first time I read the list, I thought some of these were perfectly legitimate reasons for eating!

I love this Day because it really digs into the nitty-gritty of Cognitive Therapy. I believe that we sometimes eat because we simply want to, we can’t be bothered to resist in the moment, and we use one of these thoughts to allow the eating.

It can be hard to fight back against these thoughts and accept the fact that wrong eating is NOT OK, even if it means feeling deprived, missing out on free food, feeling alienated from your family or friends because you’re not eating with them, and so on. Losing food as a best friend and comforter is not easy. These feelings get weaker over time, every time you make it through them without eating. At first, I thought I would never get to the point where I consistently could go without eating unplanned food, and I’m still not there yet, but my confidence is increasing over time. That’s how it works.

Here’s the Response Card that Dr. Beck recommends reading every single day:

“It’s NOT OK to eat unplanned food of any kind. I’m just trying to fool myself. Every single time I eat something I’m not supposed to, I strengthen my giving-in muscle and weaken my resistance muscle. I might feel good for the few seconds I’m eating, but I’ll feel bad afterwards. If I want to lose excess weight and keep it off, I absolutely must stop fooling myself.”

Cravings update: I’m feeling pretty good today, not in danger of craving. At the gym last night, while stretching my tight muscles, I thought that a craving kind of feels like a cramp. The end of a craving sure feels like the release of a cramped muscle. My body feels like it does after a good cry. That’s how I feel this morning. Maybe the cardio reset my system…maybe physical activity is a good way to counteract whatever’s causing me to have these cravings. One more reason to exercise.

Today’s To-Do List:

✓ I read my Advantages and NO CHOICE Response Cards at least twice today.

✓ I made and read other Response Cards as needed.

✓ I ate slowly, sitting down, and noticing every bite: All of the time.

✓ I gave myself credit for engaging in helpful eating behaviors: Some of the time.

✓ I did spontaneous exercise: twice

✓ I did planned exercise.

✓ I wrote out a food plan for tomorrow.

✓ I monitored everything in writing right after I finished eating.

✓ I ate only to normal fullness (and checked my stomach by taking a brisk walk after each meal).

✓ I created an It’s Not OK Response Card.

Today I give myself credit for:

☆ Making lots of new Response Cards.

☆ Exercising 3 days in a row without worsening any of my injuries.

☆ Eating the exact lunch I planned, even though I had an urge to change some of the ingredients.

☆ Identifying and responding to some of my sneakiest sabotaging thoughts.

☆ Going to the grocery store to purchase the foods I had planned to eat.


♡ My pants are looser.

♡ My stomach is flatter and my waist appears smaller.


Today’s workout: 40 mins Arc Trainer, wt loss program, HR low 120s. I’m not focusing on intensity right now. My biggest challenge right now is to establish the habit of daily exercise.

Today’s walk: None…more on this tomorrow

Today’s (self-designed) task: Problem-solving exercise

Yep, I didn’t go to the gym yesterday, although I blogged that I would.

Why can’t I get myself to go to the gym, even when I’ve been enjoying the many benefits of exercise for almost 2 years now?? Even when I know from at least 3 reliable sources—Bob Greene, Dr. Robert Huizenga (the medical adviser for The Biggest Loser), and my own trainer—that I need to be doing cardio no less than 5 days a week, preferably six??

I’m putting up all kinds of resistance to getting my exercise where it needs to be, which means there are some sabotaging thoughts going on. So today, instead of doing one of Dr. Beck’s tasks from the book, I’m creating one of my own, using techniques from the book. I’m devoting today to working on exercise.

I’m going to increase my exercise by doing the following:

Writing the planned time for my workout in my planner and on my blog.

Emailing the planned time for my workout to my trainer.

Emailing my trainer again when I’ve completed my workout.

Writing a special Advantages List for exercise.

Writing special exercise-related response cards.

Watching health-related TV shows.

Reading Shape magazine.

Thinking about how good I feel while stretching and using the whirlpool after a workout.

Exercise must be part of my daily routine for the rest of my life. The sooner I accept this fact, the sooner it will get easier!

Today’s To Do List:

✓ I read my Advantages List at least twice today.

✓ I made and read other Response Cards as needed.

✓ I ate slowly, sitting down and noticing every bite: Most of the time

✗ I did spontaneous exercise: No

✓ I did planned exercise: Yessss!!!!

✓ I wrote out a food plan for tomorrow.

✓ I monitored everything I ate in writing.

Today I give myself credit for:

☆ Withstanding ongoing mild cravings.

☆ Attacking my exercise problem head-on.


☆ Sticking to SBD Phase I foods all day.

Update: Although my DH goes to a different gym than I do, it’s in the same chain. His gym was closed today, so he used his reciprocal privileges to come to mine. We bumped into each other there. How fun is that? Maybe exercise will even bring us closer!

Although I didn’t finish all of the projects on my list today, I did most of them, and will keep working on it.