Another day of doing the best I can despite being out of my usual controlled environment and surrounded by temptation. I was able to get my salad before lunch, and I ate earlier than everyone else because I was hungry. Then when everyone’s order arrived, I was treated to seeing and smelling the giant burritos, chips, and salsa that everyone was digging into. My boss opened a bag of chips on the table right next to me. But I didn’t give in. After he was done eating, I folded the bag closed and moved it away. Later, I threw away the leftovers.

Yesterday’s pizza was still around. Cold pizza is one of my weaknesses. The old me would have definitely jumped at the chance. Luckily, the leftovers had been left out overnight at room temperature—not safe to eat. If the pizza had been refrigerated, it would have been a major temptation! At the end of the day, I took another peek in the pizza box—my coworkers had almost polished off the leftover pizza. Egads!

After it was all over, I caved. On the way home, I stopped at my favorite restaurant and had a fried chicken wing appetizer (6 small pieces), and white zinfandel. It’s what I call “relief eating”! I was exhausted from 2 long days of meetings, and a very poor sleep the night before. My resolve was at a low. I guess my sabotaging thoughts were something like, “I deserve a treat. I can’t be expected to be perfect tonight.” Talk about fooling myself! I even had myself convinced I was too tired to write down my meal plan for today!

I would have been a rock star if I had resisted last night! Guess I’ll have to be a rock star another time.

Somewhere (and I can’t find it in this book), Dr. Beck says that you have to watch for sabotaging thoughts after a challenging food event, not just during it. Guilty as charged! I’ll be “good” at a party, on vacation, or whatever, and then eat when I get home. The sabotaging thought is, “Whew, I made it! Now it’s safe to eat.”

But it really isn’t. Unplanned food is unplanned food, at home or abroad.

On the other hand, I didn’t go on to pig out the rest of the night. Just a bite of cheese when DH was having some. I credit the fact that I managed to eat lots of protein in the earlier part of the day. Once I’ve had a high-protein breakfast, snack, and lunch, my hunger is pretty mellow for the rest of the day and night. (Studies show that it’s protein, not fiber or fat, that increases satiety and results in reduced caloric intake.)

This morning, I have an increased desire to eat but luckily, no real cravings. For the past 2 days, I’ve given my giving-in muscle the chance to do a couple of push-ups. But it ends here. RIGHT NOW is the most important time to get back on track.

And that just happens to be the topic of Day 20! More on that later.


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.

Today’s workout: 20 minutes on ET, Level 1. (Took it easy as my back, which I sprained last year, is acting up.) 40 minutes weights, abs, and focus on back stretching with trainer.

Today’s walk: To and from an appointment, 15 mins total.

I’ve been planning my meals and keeping my eating diary as described in the Day 15 post, but did not do any BDS tasks. I’ve been slacking off on the program in general, slipping away from reading my Advantages or other Response Cards. I have mentally been answering back some sabotaging thoughts, but obviously some crept in that prevented me from posting yesterday. “Only eating while eating” has also fallen by the wayside.

This is the point where I got complacent last year and, as a result, stopped making progress. I’ve been in the same rut for over 2 years where I stay on SBD most of the time but not always, using some of my BDS skills but not others. Exercising when I “have to” see my trainer, but hardly ever in-between. These are the behaviors that stopped me from continuing to gain weight, but are not enough for me to lose it.

The sabotaging thoughts that caused this are insidious because they seem so benign. Some of them even contain a grain of truth, but in order to go all the way and transform my body into a slim, healthy one, I must change my way of thinking.

Day 16 coming tomorrow.

Sabotaging thoughts:

• I don’t have time to read my Advantages list right now. I’ll do it later.

• I eat what I’m supposed to most of the time. It’s OK if I treat myself to Thai food or wine once in a while.  [Note: which means I treat myself once a day!]

I work out with my trainer twice a week. That’s enough exercise. If I get too busy and don’t do anything else in-between, I’m still golden.

• I feel great, so much taller and stronger than before I started exercising. So what if I don’t lose any weight?

• It’s OK if I skip a day on my blog. Other BDS bloggers have taken more than 42 days to complete the program. My readers will forgive me.

• I’ve already learned the skills I need from the BDS book. The rest don’t apply to me.

• Wine isn’t fattening. It even has health benefits. For 100 calories, I can get more pleasure from a glass of wine than 100 calories worth of food. [Note: Yeah, so I drink multiple glasses of wine a night.]

• This meal is perfectly on my plan. It’s OK if I eat it in front of the computer.

OY! Do you see what I’m dealing with? Sneaky, insidious sabotaging thoughts. Somewhere inside me, I believe these things to be true, and I need to change these thoughts and banish these beliefs.

I don’t have responses to these thoughts yet, but I’ll work on it.

Today’s To-D0 List:

✓ I did planned exercise

✓ I did spontaneous exercise

✓ I monitored my eating in writing

✓ I wrote down tomorrow’s meal plan

✗ I did other BDS checklist items ☹

Today I give myself credit for:

☆ Coming right back to my blog after missing a day.

☆ Doing spontaneous exercise despite a wonky schedule.

☆ Doing planned exercise despite my fear of worsening my back injury. [Note: I know from experience that sitting around and doing nothing is worse for my back. I hope I succeeded in exercising in such a way that I helped rather than hurt my back. If any of you reading this is injured, please be very careful when exercising.]

☆ Doing my credit list even though the “old me” would be beating myself up right now.

☆ Talking to my therapist about my experiences with cravings this weekend and another difficult situation in my life. [Note: As one of my diet coaches, my therapist knows about this blog, and I’m willing to share it with her. She just doesn’t get on the Web very much.]

☆ Identifying some of my most insidious sabotaging thoughts.