Darxus

I'm doing well today

I'm doing well today

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2009-09-29
I've been losing weight at a healthy rate for a week and a half, and I've been getting entirely acceptable exercise for the last week. And I feel like I could maintain these habits forever. And I feel like I can handle the work I need to do to my house.

Now I just need to figure out what keeps causing me to feel the opposite a while after each time this happens.

My diet is mostly Smart Ones microwavable dinners (with garlic salt). Which might not have happened if it said "Weight Watchers" any larger. That, and keeping track of all the calories I consume, I think, is what's making this easy. I'm not even trying to stay under a certain number of calories a day, although a calculator estimated 2,646 per day would maintain my weight, and I'd generally like to stay under that. I think just paying attention to how many calories are in different things, and avoiding the ones that are ridiculous. And I haven't even stopped eating candy bars or drinking sugary sodas. I'm hoping to cut down, but it's apparently unnecessary. I've seen calculations a few times showing how little exercise contributes to correcting a calorie consumption / expenditure balance to lose weight - I continue to believe it, while recognizing that exercise is still great.

Judging by past experiences, I will eventually break down and eat lots of food that's bad for me, and that will kill my motivation for eating well for an extended period of time.

And the same thing will happen with exercising. I won't feel like doing it, and then afterward I'll feel so upset that I didn't exercise that I... won't exercise.

Doesn't make any sense to me now.

"...this thing we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down." - Mary Pickford

I added that to my quotes collection four years ago. A day of not exercising, and a day of eating horribly, are not even problems. As long as I then get back on top of it. And I really have no idea, right now, why I have so much difficulty getting back on top of it.

Any suggestions for dealing with it, next time it happens?

Hopefully I'll take better notes next time. Of course the problem is, I'll be so depressed about it that I won't feel like taking notes. But maybe I can read this when that time comes and understand that those notes may be the most important chance of improving this cycle.


I'm also convinced the best cure for depression is helping other people. Because humans are social animals, we need contact with others, and part of that wiring is an emotional need do things for others. Not out of obligation, or because we should, but because it feels good.

It's kind of like there's no such thing as a selfless act, because those acts always give us emotional benefit. And that's okay, because that's exactly how we're supposed to work.


Maybe my relatively recently improved understanding of this will soften my next crash a little. I'm also hoping it might help that I seem to have finally made peace with calorie counting.

This was a good time for me to have recently come across an article on chronically helping people. Some people get out of hand going for that emotional bonus that results from helping people. And the solution I got out of it was to make sure the reason you're helping people is because helping feels good itself, not to get an expression of gratitude out of them, because that's obnoxious.


I have wished for years that there was a way to get rid of the vending machines in the building I work in. Well, the stuff containing refined carbohydrates, which is just about everything. I think I recently came up with a solution: Don't bring any dollar bills or coins into the office.


Cardiovascular exercise is the type I've been most concerned with. Strength training has great benefits, but generally I'm already strong, while my cardiovascular stamina could really use some work. I had a little success running several years ago, but where I live now is far worse for it. And running is hard, and can be rough on the body. Jumping rope, and jumpingjacks are similarly hard. Considering the options, I bought a Concept 2 rowing machine. Great full body exercise, both cardio and strength. Seems to be far less likely to cause injuries than running. And I had enjoyed it in the couple gyms I had memberships to. So it has been incredibly frustrating how many problems I've been coming up against. Upper back muscles got intensely sore quickly. So I learned to relax them more, which resulted in a far more concerning kind of upper back sorness. Recently I've seemed to have problems with my sternum stabbing my liver. I figure all of these problems are somewhat related to my belly getting in the way, and my lack of flexibility in the direction of touching my toes, both screwing up my posture.

So I'm very pleased that rowing for shorter periods, more times per day, and more stretching, seems to be making all of these problems go away.
  • *hugs*

    I know that circular feeling, the "catch-22" with depression. It sucks ass. I don't have a magic button for it. I wish I did.

    The closest I've been able to come with dealing with not doing things, then spiraling down into the catch-22 of it, is to think of things in weeks, rather than in days. I don't try to "do X thing" every day, I try to "do X thing" every week, or so many times a week. That way I can fail a couple days out of a week, but still come out ahead in the end, even if it means I spend my Sunday night doing all the laundry ever.


    I love your idea of helping others, and I think that I shall endeavor to do that myself, even if it's just a little thing like telling someone "hi" when I'm feeling at my worst. Thank you for sharing that.


  • I don't have concrete suggestions

    But I'll deposit some generic encouragement. I admire your willingness to examine your life frankly and - as best anyone can - honestly.
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