Dusting Myself Off After a Binge-Eating Episode

August 15, 2018

I’ve been having a really good August: eating healthy food, making smart choices, keeping active with my daily walks. I feel better about myself and my progress than I have for a while.

But that doesn’t mean I’m flawless. I make mistakes, and I’m okay with that too. I’m trying to be better about acknowledging my stumbles, moving on, and focusing on my strengths.

I had a binge-eating episode late one night, last week. It was Read the rest of this entry »

A Middle-Of-The-Night Junk Food Binge

August 13, 2017

It’s been two weeks since my exposure to poison oak (it happened during this hike), and I’m still as itchy as ever. I have rashes on both legs, a huge rash on my ribcage and stomach, and rashes up and down both arms.

In the grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. Just a Read the rest of this entry »

July Weight Loss Chart Update

July 5, 2013

I wasn’t planning on posting during the long holiday weekend, but I couldn’t sit on this post any longer. I had my once-a-month weigh-in at the beginning of the week, and the results were fantastic. I postponed this post so I could share my Fitbloggin recaps (read them here, here and here), but I can’t postpone any longer! Here’s what the scale said:


Down SIX POUNDS during the month of June!  I tend to make Read the rest of this entry »

A Tight Squeeze

April 30, 2013

Things are still going pretty well, ladies and gentlemen. I’m now on Day 5 of getting back on track, which means 5 days of making good food choices and 5 days of exercise (I haven’t worked out yet today, but I will).  On Sunday, I made a big crockpot of chicken and veggie soup, so I’ve been enjoying that for my lunches. I’ve brought workout clothes to work, so I can get my exercise in after I’m done in the office.

While it’s a big improvement from how I was eating last week, I haven’t been perfect. Read the rest of this entry »

Weight Loss Chart, Version 2.0

December 7, 2011

Have you been visiting Keep It Up, David every day hoping for a blog post with an extraordinarily large amount of photos of my weight loss chart? If that’s the case, you should drop everything and go buy a lotto ticket, because day is your lucky day!

Today is the day I unveil my Weight Loss Chart, Version 2.0!

Before I get into how my chart has evolved, I should start by saying that I weighed myself yesterday, so in addition to reconfiguring the chart, I’ve also added to it. Here’s the latest update:

I stayed even. My weight of 236 equals a weight loss of 166 pounds. I’m not surprised at the results of this week’s weigh-in, and I’ll explain why a little later in this post.

Now, back to the chart reconfiguration! I wrote last week about how my weight loss chart was in a bit of a pickle: I was approaching the end of my ninth page, and there was simply no room for the tenth. Something had to be done. My 89″ weight loss chart already dominated an entire wall, and even wrapped around the corner. Here’s what it looked like when I added the ninth page a few months ago:

Now that ninth page is filled up. Here’s what I did to rectify the space problem.

Step One: I removed the first five pages of the chart. Those five pages show my progress from January 2010, when I started losing weight, through January 2011 – the first year of this journey. The four pages that remained, which show my progress (and a lot of plateaus) from January 2011 through the present, were moved to the left.

Here’s those 4 pages:

Which means I now have room for Page Ten!

There’s also room for Page Eleven, which means this set-up will last me for another 4-5 months.

Step Two: I remade the chart showing my first year of weight loss, and condensed it from five pages to two. I did that by shortening the X axis: Instead of every vertical line on the graph paper representing 1 day, I made every 5 lines represent 1 month. By doing this, I could fit an entire year of weight loss onto two pages, oriented vertically. Take a look:

This new Year 1 chart starts at my heaviest weight, 402 pounds…

…and ends one year later, when I weighed 243 pounds:

Yep, I lost 159 pounds in one year, and when you show it like this on a chart, it looks even more radical that it actually was!

This Year 1 chart got hung above Pages 6-10, and the end result is a weight loss chart that looks like this:

In about six months, when I finish with Page 11, and I again have nowhere to go, I’ll simply remove the pages that show Year 2, condense them like I did for Year 1, and hang them next to Year 1. This system works! (The pages I removed, by the way, are in a safe place.)

I fear I may have bored you all to death with all this chart talk, and if that’s the case, I apologize. If you’re a fan of charts and graphs, like I am, and are super intrigued by all this, than take a look at this post, which shows you how to start a weight loss chart of your very own!

Moving on…

I mentioned earlier that my lack of any weight loss this week wasn’t a surprise. In fact, I’m a touch surprised I didn’t gain. The reason for this is that a few days ago, I lost control and had a little binge. And by “little,” I mean “large.” It consisted of: 1 bag of gummi bears, 1 bag of banana chips, 1 bag of Peanut Butter M&Ms, 1/2 bag of orange slices (those jelly candies that are like gumdrops but shaped like orange slices), and one package of 12 smallish cupcakes. In the name of honesty and full disclosure, all of those candy bags were larger than single-serving packages.

That’s the nuts and bolts of the binge. As for the why… well, simply put, I was feeling shitty about myself. I was feeling lonely and depressed, for specific reasons that I’m not going to share, and those negative feelings blossomed and grew and wrapped around me, clinging like ivy, and eventually, they consumed me, and I turned to food. It was a mistake, and the food didn’t make me feel better, but what makes me the most annoyed about the whole episode is that I didn’t take my own advice. I wrote a blog last week called “Walk into the Fire,” about facing fears and having the courage to stand up for myself, and in my first big challenge since that epiphany, I failed. I didn’t stand up for myself, and when I started craving junk food and those cravings grew to be larger and stronger than I could handle, I didn’t turn to friends and family and ask for help. I caved. That, more than the thousands of empty calories I consumed, is what made me the most ashamed.

I’m not ashamed anymore. I fell asleep that night feeling pretty low, but the next morning, I shook it off, and decided to not dwell on it. I needed to move on. It was a new day. Since then, my eating has been healthy and in control, and my exercise has been strong and focused. That’s reason enough to say…

…Keep it up, David.

Anatomy of a Bad Day (and a Chart Update)

October 27, 2011

You know how some days start out good, and end terribly? Tuesday was one of those days for me. I woke up ready to go – excited, even – because it was a weigh-in day. I hadn’t weighed myself in three weeks, and for most of those three weeks, I didn’t miss the scale. It was over the weekend that I started becoming really curious about my weight. Then, all of a sudden, Tuesday couldn’t come quick enough. It was joyful anticipation: overall, my three weeks had been good. I had exercised 17 out of the 21 days, and eaten well, too. I was expecting to lose the pound I’d gained since hitting my all-time low, and maybe even lose another pound on top of it.

I brought my scale out from hiding – it’s been living on the top shelf of my closet, where I didn’t have to look at it every day – and I weighed myself. Three times. And all three times I got the same result:

I gained 2 pounds.

What?!? It didn’t make much sense. My eating and exercise had been good. I hadn’t had any binges nor swung by any buffets. I had been pushing myself at the gym. I was in shock when I updated my chart:

Here’s a couple more pictures of the chart, since it’s been a while since I’ve posted any:

What’s interesting (and positive) was that my initial reaction wasn’t to beat myself up or curl up in the corner and cry. I was confused, but I wasn’t disappointed, and I wasn’t angry either. I decided I should go back to weighing myself weekly, but keeping the scale in the closet except for when I use it. Then I continued getting ready for work. In the car, I went back through the past three weeks in my mind, seeing if there was some big event that I wasn’t remembering, but there wasn’t. There were no late-night runs to Taco Bell. There were no pie-eating contests. There were no episodes where I ate an entire can of frosting with my fingers in front of the television. I couldn’t be mad at myself because I couldn’t identify what went wrong. As I pulled into the parking garage at work, I decided all I could do was continue making good choices. I just had to keep it up, and the weight would eventually come off.  As I settled at my desk and prepped for the work day, I felt proud, because I’d handled a weight gain better than I ever had before.

That was the morning. But the afternoon, my tune had changed.  Most of the work day went fine: I had brought all sorts of healthy foods – enough for lunch and dinner, so I could go straight from the office to the gym. Around 3:30, I was feeling really hungry – it had been a few hours since lunch, so I decided to eat part of my dinner. I ended up eating all of it. Around 5pm, I was filing up my water bottle, and I noticed I was hungry again. I was in the office kitchen, where there’s a whole wall of chips, granola bars and candy. A granola bar wouldn’t be the end of the world, I thought, and it would hold me over until after the gym. So I grabbed one. Well, I’ll grab two, since I’m here, and keep one in my desk for tomorrow.

Both granola bars were eaten within minutes. Then I noticed that the snack stash for the project I’m working on, located mere feet from my desk, had been replenished, and over the next hour, I wandered over there a few times for a handful of almonds or crackers. And two more granola bars. By quitting time, around 7pm, my brain was in full-on sabotage mode: You’ve already ruined the day, David. The ship has capsized and it’s sinking. There’s nothing you can do. Screw the gym, David – you won’t put a dent in the caloric damage that’s been done. You can get back on track tomorrow. Plus, what does it really matter? You gained weight even when you do everything right, so what’s the point of making good choices?

This self-sabotage is nothing new. I’ve experienced it on every diet I’ve ever been on. I’ve gone long stretches in the past couple years where I’ve warded it off, thanks to careful food planning, but I obviously haven’t beaten it completely. Yesterday, it really grabbed hold, and tight.

When I left the office, I didn’t go to the gym. I went to the store. At the store, I bought a package of 4 veggie sausages, since I was really craving a hot dog. I also bought a package of 8 rolls. I also bought a bag of potato chips. It wasn’t a gigantic family-size bag, but it definitely wasn’t a single serving, either. Then I went home, where I ate all of it. All of it. Then I felt ashamed. And depressed. And pathetic. Like a failure.

I didn’t want to exercise. I didn’t want to write a blog post. I didn’t want to do my burpees. I just wanted to sleep. So I went to bed.

When I first woke up on Wednesday, I didn’t remember the prior night’s activities until I went into my kitchen and saw the dirty dishes. I decided then and there that today had to be different. This bullshit couldn’t happen again. I packed food for the day, and at work, I ate it. It turns out I didn’t bring enough, so I supplemented it with a salad from a nearby restaurant. It was a long day at the office – I was there until 8:30pm or so – but I came home, and even though I was tired, I did my burpees, all 47 of them – the 23 that I skipped the day before, and the 24 for today. Then, I went for a run. My goal was to run for 35 minutes, and walk for 5 minutes before and after, for a 45-minute workout. I ended up running for 58 minutes, and with the walking warm-up and cool down, I was gone for 68 minutes. My route was too boring to show on a map: I picked a nearby major street, and ran down it for about a half hour, then turned around and run home. I ended up running 5.7 miles, at 5.6 mph. I’ll take it.

Tomorrow, I gotta do the same thing: eat well, and exercise. On Friday, the same thing. Same goes for the weekend. My goal is clear: I gotta…

…Keep it up, David.

TOMORROW: A big announcement.

THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW: I announce the winner of my $20 iTunes giftcard giveaway! If you haven’t entered, click here!

Another Shitty Sunday.

March 27, 2011

I don’t want to write this post, but I’ve postponed it for hours already, so time to bite the bullet and get it over with.

I’m not gonna write much, because I’m not feeling well.  I’ve been sneezing all day, and my nose is nicely alternating between being fantastically stuffed up and then dripping like a faucet.  Good times.

In addition to not feeling 100% physically, I’m down in the dumps emotionally, too.  And that’s why I don’t want to write this post.  For the second Sunday in a row, I allowed my eating to spiral out of control.

Breakfast was fine: a veggie burger in 1/2 of a whole wheat pita, a banana, a pear, and some yogurt.  Then, around 1pm or so, I tried to rally myself up off the couch to go and exercise.  I failed.

Then, while still on the couch, I decided to figure out what I was gonna do for lunch.  I have plenty of fantastic ingredients for a kick-ass salad, but when I was fast-forwarding through some commercials on the TiVo something caught my eye: an ad for cereal.  I’m not even sure exactly was the commercial was for (Special K something-or-other, I think, I didn’t even stop the fast-forwarding to watch it in real time) but the seed was planted…  and it quickly took root and branched out, and coiled around every part of my brain: I want cereal, and I want it now. My next thought was: the mini-mart across the street has cereal! Next thing I know, I’m at the counter at the mini-mart, pulling money out of my wallet while the guy puts a box of Corn Pops into a bag.  And a canister of Pringles, because they were one aisle over.

Twenty minutes later, and the whole box of Corn Pops are gone. Eaten.  Same with the Pringles.

Two minutes after that, and the remorse sits in.

Ten minutes after that, and I’m face down on my bed, head in my pillow, thinking of the good week I had just had, and how I probably just undid it all.

Right now, I still feel pretty shitty.  I’m trying – really trying – to not be hard on myself.  I know I’m stronger and better than my actions today suggest.  I re-read my blog post from September, when I had my last cereal binge, and after that one, I was able to rebound quickly and get back on track – but I’m not feeling that kind of energy right now.  I’m trying to put together a game plan for tomorrow – one that involves good food and exercise.  I’m trying to focus on what I’ve accomplished.  Trying to remember that everyone has slip-ups, and falling isn’t the important thing, it’s how you get up.  Trying to NOT feel like a failure.  Trying to move on.  Trying…  trying…  just trying.

All this trying is exhausting, and I’m not sure it’s working.

I normally end all my posts with ‘Keep it up, David,’ but I’m not feeling it tonight.