I talk a lot about how I lost weight.. let me tell you how I gained weight.
The gist is that I consumed more calories than my body needed.
I ate a surplus of calories, my body was like hey this is a lot, and instead of burning off the calories or building muscle, my body stored fat.
Why did it store fat and not build muscle? Because I was pretty sedentary!! More on this later!
Whether we track calories or not...an surplus of calories will cause us to gain weight. A calorie deficit will cause us to lose weight. And just around the right amount will cause us to maintain weight.
So I wanna tell ya a little bit more about my story, how I got started, and why I do what I do now...
I had always struggled with the way I looked. The way I felt about my body. It's not a fun thing to be in third grade and think there's something wrong with your body.
I was not a very strong-minded kid. I did not have a lot of confidence in my ability to do anything really... I quit a lot of things whenever they got the slightest bit hard.
When I was in high school, I still felt like something was wrong with my weight. I tried to only eat a single piece of fruit for the day hoping that would help me lose weight. Around 6pm, I'd cave and eat everything in sight.
The crazy thing is that I wasn't overweight. But that mindset, that there was something wrong with me and that I was weak... and those habits... starve self and then binge... those two things ultimately did cause me to gain weight and struggle to get the weight off.
Here's how that happened.
After college, I moved moved to the city! Chicago! Where you can get a hot dog or pizza on just about every corner. I started my first job. I started grad school. And I started a relationship. All in the same year. I also started stress eating. On the way home from work. McDonalds fries because how the F is someone supposed to manage and teach 34 kindergartners? It was the most stressful time of my life. And I had so many things to juggle. Somehow I thought the fries would make me feel better. They didn't. They'd start something else though.
When I got home, because I hadn't eaten all day besides the fries, I'd binge on whatever was in sight. Chips. Cookies. Fried Oreos. I didn't know how to grocery shop back then, so we'd order GrubHub and eat an entire pizza and drink a liter of RC. And then finish the cookie dough we had opened before dinner.
This repeated almost every single day.
I gained weight.
I blamed it on the birth control I was on.
But looking back, duh. I over-consumed food. I stress ate. I boredom ate. I fed my emotions. I over-consumed food. I claimed it was about living in the city and enjoying food, but there is nothing special about city McDonalds fries or chips or burritos from Chipotle.
I gained 25lbs. Maybe more. I stopped getting on the scale because I was so ashamed.
I stopped wearing jeans because they hurt my skin and I refused to buy a bigger pair.
All of this continued until I decided to make a change in my life. Deciding means literally cutting off all other options. And I promise you, I didn't lose weight by starving myself on a 1200 calorie diet. And I promise you, losing weight was not the only thing that makes someone happy.
I will tell you a little bit more about this tomorrow. But it's always good to realize WHY something happened so that whatever solution you come up with actually matches the problem. Sometimes we come up with solutions but... they solve problems that don't actually exist! and sometimes these "solutions" create even more problems for us... (I will tell ya more about that in a few days.)
So to sum up:
My problem... well problems:
-eating because of stress
-blaming my weight gain on other things in my life, not taking responsibility for why I gained weight
-not eating during the day and then binge eating at night
-eating mostly processed foods
-not understanding what special occasion foods were and lumping all processed foods together
-rarely eating plants.. vegetables.. things grown in the ground
-NOT TAKING CARE OF MY BODY!!! my one and only body I have while I am alive
Turns out you can create solutions to solve problems when you know what problems you are trying to solve!