A weighty issue

This is a really hard post to write and it’s been sitting in my head for a while now.  So bear with me.

Last year a lot of my ‘interweb’ friends were writing love letters to their bodies.  I remember reading them at the time and thinking I would much rather be sticking pens in my eyes.  And then Tertia forwarded an email of a magazine looking to interview women that have rediscovered their sexuality after having children.  I literally snorted out loud.  Sexuality?  What sexuality?

I don’t think I’m ugly, but I look at my boobs after breastfeeding 3 children, my fat stomach and all my stretch marks and I shudder.   And I look at the number on the scale and want to run a mile.

Not that I don’t know what to eat.  I know why I am not losing weight (stress, lack of exercise, giving up smoking and using food as a crutch) and yet I do very little about it.  I avoid full length mirrors except for the most cursory glance at my outfit in the mornings.  I hardly buy clothes that aren’t a. black or b. hide the worst of my sins.  To be fair, I hardly buy clothes.  I am loathe to spend money on anything until “I lose the weight”. 

I would start an eating plan, lose 5 or 6 kgs, feel great, and then gain 10 kgs.  Self-sabotage much?  I have this whole “I’m so lazy and fat” thing going on in my head that’s just crazy and I know I am probably punishing myself for something that’s just ridiculous.

Yes, I know all the logical answers and I know there’s just no instant diet and the weight’s just never going to fall off me.  But I do miss that thinner version of me.  I fear that Etienne might wake up one day and realize that he is living with an unattractive fat person and head for the hills.  It impacts on my sex life in a big way.  In my mind I’m still that daring (and young!) person that absolutely loves sex when in reality I feel, well, decidedly un-sexy.  And he tries to help in his gentle kind way without making me feel even worse.  Which makes me feel even worse.  Because I keep thinking: who would want to love a body like this?

So I keep punishing myself.  Like an idiot.  I dread feeling restricted and hungry and miserable and deprived.  And yeeees, I know it’s a mindset.  But by dammit, I need to get into that mindset.

I know this about myself:  if I’m not constantly thinking about the goal of going to weigh myself with a 3rd person I suck at diets eating plans.  And I hate Weigh Less with an undying passion.  I did SureSlim and that worked brilliantly. 

Are there any other good eating plans out there?

If you have lost weight AND KEPT IT OFF what did you do?  What made the difference for you?

30 thoughts on “A weighty issue”

  1. I have battled with these issues since I was in high school 🙁

    For me the only thing that has worked is Weigh-Less because I am made to be accountable to someone each week.

    I know people either love or hate exercise but for me going to gym regularly also made a huge difference and I really miss it. It never really helped to loose weight as much as it helped me feel better about myself!

    Good luck. Weight issues are very seldom about food!

  2. Ag my liewe vriendin. Jy skryf so mooi. Jou man sal nooit ‘n mile hardloop nie – daarvoor is jy waaayyyy te cool. xxx

  3. Try a dietician instead. I did sure slim. It rocked my world. But now – gosh it’s incredibly hard to commit to, and I’m sure it has made a tiny mess of my system. mwa

    1. I lost about 13 kgs when that was all I had to lose. Now I have a lot more to lose. But its also a rather expensive option..

      1. If you have your old plan look at it. It’s not only pricey, but also – imagine: eggs for breakfast FOREVER?!?! [basically]. No man, can’t be held up. It just isn’t sustainable. To lose fast, sure. but then why not just munch protein every 2 hrs – small quantities? Works just as well. And all you have to decide is: is it protein or not? But then, you sit with one issue: what will you eat to stay there? Cos that isn’t sustainable either, and, if you are like me [and I think you might be hehe], you reward your great loss. And again. And again. Until you have now double to lose. Frankly, you are gorgeous. the end. 

        1. We are SO alike! Yes, I do end up rewarding myself, but I never used to bd like that. I don’t want to be stick-thin, just healthy and comfortable. But what is that again??

  4. I agree with cazpi.  Go see a dietician.  Not only do they fit into your life they also work out what you like to eat and work around YOU!  Don’t know of a good one, Sorry,  but if they are good they are really worth the money.  They work out a program that suits your life style your personality and everything. The key is really just finding what works for you and that is what they do best.  I think maybe Tertia might know of a good one or Candice.  I might say something now that I don’t know how you will respond to, but please see it from where it comes!  I also use to battle with weight issues and use to think that I am not sexy or attractive if I am not model skinny.  Thing is I am well over 40, 2nd marriage, three kids one very late !  Thing is make peace with yourself and your body.  You have the most amazing hubby and he loves you for who you are not your body.  Won’t carry on it is one for book club and wine.  Thing is we have everything and are so blessed with such great happiness.  Look around the world is suffering and we are happy!  Why do we still always complain??  I do it all the time and then I look at my kids and hubby and Wow we are blessed.  Hope you don’t mind me saying all this.  I envy you sometimes and being so part of life when I am just a housewife!!  Nothing to society!  So ja I just think we should all just be happy.  Life is short make the most of it.  Hold on to what you got and laugh a lot!!!  

    1. Tania, I think you underestimate yourself greatly, you are SO not ‘just a housewife’!!
      And I hate to break it to you, but Tertia and Candice both go to a dietician I referred them to. I know. Badbadbad 🙂

  5. I’m going to come at this from a different angle, simply because I have been part of the weight loss and later the body-loving blogosphere for the last four years.

    First you have to ascertain whether food and weight are really the problem, or whether they’re symptoms of the problem.  Let me give you an example.

    My sister gained about 10-15 kg through her three pregnancies and felt really uncomfortable.  So she went to Weigh Less (insert plan /dietitian, etc here) and over time lost the excess weight.  She remains careful about what she eats and looks great.

    I, on the other hand, have been stealing food and eating in secret since I was a child.  I have issues about not being good enough, not being heard, not being allowed to express myself fully.  I used to binge regularly and hated myself, my body and my life.  At the same time, I’ve been very interested in nutrition and have devoted the last four years of my life to finding the plan that will not only help me lose weight, but regain my health and vitality.  I weigh over 150 kg.  I have been on countless plans, but I always sabotaged myself before I lose too much weight.  I didn’t need a dietitian or a plan, I needed to make peace with myself, my life, my choices and my body.  I needed to get a life.  I needed to give myself permission to be me, to discover and display my magnificence and my passionate spirit.  For people like me, dieting is punitive.  These days I follow the tenets of intuitive eating, which is a wonderful journey of discovery, not a diet. 

    You need to find out in which category you fall.  If it’s the former, find a plan that advocates whole and healthy foods (not diet food – and certainly no “products”) and a way to incorporate an activity that you enjoy into your daily life (for instance, I know there are Nia classes in your suburb).  But if it’s the latter, change needs to happen from the inside out and I can give you many valuable links and resources to help you on what could turn out to be the most exciting journey of your life.

    Namaste.

    1. Thank you Hanlie, I think it’s a little bit of both, but mostly comfort eating and recovering from an incredibly stressful time. I just need to get it out there. It’s my ‘therapy’. And I suspect that I’m not alone.
      You are incredibly brave, don’t let anyone undermine you!

      1. I really do recommend “Women, Food and God” by Geneen Roth.  It’s available at various bookstores and it will help you with all the aspects.  We are so worthy of the best life has to offer… right now.

  6. I am on Weigh Less. I started it at the end of Feb and have lost 10 kg to date.
    I LOVE the plan and I LOVE that I can incorporate what I normally eat into my life. Also, WL is more than just an eating plan. It’s actually become a way of life for me. I am constantly aware of what I am putting into my mouth, I listen to my body and ask myself if I’m really hungry or if I’m just being greedy etc. etc. I ask myself if I am eating because I feel sad etc. And I make a concerted effort to deal with my emotions and leave the food out of it.
    I no longer weigh my food because I now KNOW what 100g looks like but in the beginning when you are learning things like portion control you unfortunately do need to weigh your portions.I do agree with Hanlie in that sometimes weight issues are about more than food. I unfortunately NEED to pay for accountability and therefore WL works well for me because I need to weigh myself every week and I do love the group dynamics. 

  7. Hi Tania, some of the ladies on the blogs have formed a weight loss group and they get weekly menu plans and exercise routines via the lady who started it. It is extremely well planned and you are under no pressure to do everything that is on the plan but there are quite a few of the bloggers who have joined.  One of the ladies is a beauty therapist and she does newsletters about that side of things too. Lovely support without the pressure.
    Let me know if you want me to forward the e-mail address to you. Love and hugs from one who knows where you are coming from. xx

  8. Yay for you for being brave enough to write about weighty issues! There are a gazillion good eating plans out there but I don’t think that’s what you need. Hell, you could probably write another good eating plan. As laurakim said, weight issues are seldom about food. Perhaps have a look at Cari Corbet-Owen’s site (www.ditch-diets-live-light.com/mind-over-fatter-roadmap.html) for a different approach. Lots of love to you and your amazing body!

  9. Oh the weight thing – I have had many upa and downs in my life, but today, I am 13kg lighter than when the twins were conceived and I get compliments on how I look almost every day. And really, I did not do much apart from change my mindset about food. To be honest, I became too busy to think about food – survival mode does not allow you to think about much else than just getting past the day with 3 hours sleep the night before. 

    When I realized that I was slowly loosing weight (it took me almost 3 years to get to the 13kg but it is staying off and I am still loosing a bit), I started to consciously just eat when I am hungry, but making a point of having a good healthy breakfast, and a small treat every day.

    Having been on Wiegh-less several times (if warked for me every time), I do have an instinct about portions, and that is important too.

    So I am putting it out there – loosing weight is not about eating, it is about thinking. And realizing that you need enough food, but the right food. Simple good food.

    1. You make very valid points. My survival mode with 3 kids was comfort eating to deal with the exhausting etc. Time to break the habit.

  10. Babes, your post made me sob. We are EXACTLY alike when it comes to food. OMG! It was like my thoughts had been written down by you, telepathically. We are doing the X factor diet for Kristin’s sake, so let’s hope it works for me. love you!

  11. I just found your blog (from You makeovers – I read the other 3 blogs and used to work with Tertia) so am catching up a bit.  I too have gained weight after my 3rd pregnancy.  I lost a lot of weight before I fell pregnant.  I had gained it after my 2nd pregnancy and the subsequent loss of my baby (www.kendrameiring.blogspot.com).  Back then I gained from comfort eating but started going to a small gym where I know the trainer and she helped motivate me.  She asked me the question: How much responsibility do you take for losing the weight?  If I could not say 100% then the question is who is responsible for the other x%?  And also How committed are you truly to losing weight?  Only once I could honestly answer 100% to both questions, did I start losing weight.  My son is now 2 years old this month and I am 43.  I have about 12 kgs to lose in order to feel comfortable with myself.  I am very slowly getting to the 100% committed stage but just can’t seem to get there properly. 
    I have been looking at all the factors which could keep me from committing and the one which stands out mostly for me is in many ways positive.  My DH still lusts after me!!  Even looking like I do now.  And I consider myself lucky in many ways because he has always had an issue with overweight people.  He still wants to have s.ex as often as possible.  Why would this stop me from losing weight, you ask?   Well, 1 reason is that if he still wants me now, what reason do I have for losing more weight, except for my own self-esteem?  Also, if he is wanting this much s.ex now, how much will he be wanting once I have lost weight? Lol, silly, I know.  I need my sleep, really I do!  Also have to realise that once I am slimmer I will probably want it a lot more often too.  I really, really do need to get fitter to keep up with my LB.  Ok, now I’m just babbling, but you did ask for it!!

    1. Don’t stop babbling, I love it!
      Thank you for your honesty and advice, I really appreciate it!

  12. Generally I’m successful if I incorporate it into my daily life (eg start eating extra veggies at lunch and supper, watching portions, etc.). The business of eating rice cakes and tuna salad every day for 3 months does not work for me.

  13. Hi, Tania! Jong, ek geniet hierdie blog van jou so baie (ek verlang so na Bellville/die Kaap as daai medisynebottels met “Tygervallei” en “Krischem” op sien…) Ek het nie kinders nie en ek vermoed ek is redelik jonger as jou gemiddelde leser, so uit -bloos- ouderdoms-respek gedra ek myself meestal soos ‘n “lurker”, maar ek voel dat ek dalk ‘n stuiwer in die armbeurs kan gooi oor hierdie onderwerp. Kan jy ‘n korrelasie sien tussen wanneer jy antidepressante begin gebruik het en sukkel met jou gewig? Basies, iets soos ‘n vertraging in jou gemiddelde stamina of ‘n vermeerde eetlus? Ek het ‘n lang en moeilike verhouding met depressie wat my op ‘n pad van allerlei verskillende middels gesit het. SSRI’s het ‘n “underground” reputasie as die oorsaak van geweldige gewigsprobleme vir sekere mense. Ek is een van hulle en die gevolge is naar: ek het ‘n metabolisme wat skrik vir niks, het nooit meer as 60kg geweeg nie (en ek’s elle lank) en het net mooi 21kg opgetel binne 11 maande van SSRI’e gebruik. En die bleddie kilogramme het bly klou tot ‘n dierbare dokter besluit het dat my storie dat ek gewig optel weens die “wondermiddel” dalk net waar kan wees (SSRI’e is nie bedoel om gewig te affekteer nie). Dit het ‘n jaar geneem, maar op ‘n atipiese antidepressant het my depressie verbeter en ek het darem 18kg verloor sonder om regtig te probeer. My energievlakke is wonderlik en ek sien kans vir die lewe. Net ‘n idee… Ek voel dat vrouens soms hulself blameer vir gewigprobleme wat nie noodwendig binne hul beheer is nie. Sterkte vir die dag, *S

    1. Baie dankie vir jou lees en kommentaar. My probleem is dat ek “comfort eat”. Die oomblik wat ek gespanne raak eet ek, so ek probeer nou my streshantering verander. So bly jy’t daai kilogramme afgeskud!

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