Tuesday, 9 October 2012

A mini binge, and weightlifting continues

It's Tuesday, and that means more weightlifting.  And by "weightlifting", I mean "lifting tiny little 4 pound baby weights". 

I don't have a weight bench (or any proper weight lifting equipment, really), so I relocated my efforts to the living room ottoman this morning.  The day bed in the guest room, the site of my first foray into weight lifting, was not properly set up for the chest press, and the standing row was tricky.  This morning was much easier, since the ottoman is padded and almost the right height.  It's a little bit short (in length) for my liking, but it's nice and firm and perfect for almost all of the exercises.

I also adopted a new innovation for the modified push ups - - pillows.  I don't know why everyone doesn't use fluffy pillows, other than the fact that it LOOKS COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS.  I don't care - - it was 6:30 am in my living room, and it was just me, my knee pillows and the dusty, dusty floor, and I didn't really care what it looked like.  I am not the most glamorous creature when I work out after all, what with the bright pink face and dripping sweat.  At any rate, the pillows worked fantastically well, because my knees were mostly comfortable for the modified pushups, and with the ottoman, I could lever myself back up off the floor at the end of the set.  No, it was not graceful, and I am far from being able to "drop and give me 20" with any coordination, but at least I was able to do the full set of 12 modified pushups.  Thank you, knee pillows!

I noticed this morning that the standing calf raises are tougher on one leg than the other - - who knew I was not only left-handed but right-footed? 

On related news, my fasting blood sugar was back down to 5.9 mmol/L this morning, which, although higher than last month, is lower than yesterday and all of last week.  I can stand down from Defcon 4 and return to my normal level of vigilance, and trust that my levels will come down eventually, on their own time.  I will continue to monitor the levels every day, but I am hopefully learning to see that these minor elevations are just that, minor elevations.  (fingers crossed...!)

I had a difficult night last night.  Before dinner I had an almost irresistible urge to binge.  I wasn't hungry, per se, but I just wanted to stuff my face with food, if that makes any sense.  And my craving was very specific - - binging on spinach just wasn't going to do it - - I wanted salty carbs. 

Fortunately (good thing #1), I have very few salty carbs in the house.  I do have some Tostitos Scoops in the freezer, but I forgot about those, thank god.  All the other carb-laden food (the stuff I could remember about) was unpalatable, like gluten free crackers with some sort of seeds, and crisp breads that taste like metal (I'm not sure if that's a feature or a bug, in all honesty). 

I tracked my eating (good thing #2), thereby giving my brain some time to wrestle control back from whatever gland was pushing me to binge (adrenal? thymus? thyroid? pituitary?).  I don't know what gland was responsible, but my craving came on hard and fast, out of the blue.  I could not figure out what was driving it, only that I reallyreallyreally wanted something salty and starchy.  So I ended up eating about 5 tablespoons of raw sunflower seeds, about a teaspoon at a time.  And after each teaspoon I entered the food into my food diary, so that I could see exactly what was the impact from my eating.  The benefits of binging on sunflower seeds are that it takes almost forever because the seeds are tiny, and the damage is minimal - - 5 tablespoons of sunflower seeds is only about 233 calories. 

So did I win the battle of wills?  Well, I ate more sunflower seeds than I needed to before dinner (about 5 tablespoons more, in fact), which is somewhat binge-like, but I stopped well before the amount became unmanageable.  My historic binges typically result in me eating 2,000 or more calories of something in a single sitting (for example, an entire 270g bag of Ruffles plus half a container of Philadelphia onion dip and 3 Joe Louis cakes (around 2,500 calories), or my favourite: 10c popcorn + 1/2c. butter + 2 cups of shredded cheese (around 3,000 (!!!) calories)).  I'll call yesterday's issue a mini-binge. 

I know there are some people out there who would say "you call that a binge?  That's nothing.  I'll show you a binge", and they would be right.  What I ate last night barely qualifies as a binge either in the nature of the food consumed, or in the quantity of food consumed.

But the behaviour is classic binge.  A sudden, almost irresistible urge to eat when I'm not hungry?  Strong cravings for specific foods? Check and check.  It has been a long time since I had such intense and visceral cravings for food.  Good to see that I haven't lost the touch for self-destructive behaviour (she said sarcastically).

I am wondering if my cravings weren't somehow tied to my passing the 40 BMI mark that morning.  I am a notorious self-saboteur, and if there is a way to add back weight and get back into the old "Obese Class III" comfort zone, a binge will do it.  I am eating well and there is no nutrient deficit that would prompt such intense food cravings, so the issue must be emotional (or hormonal, which amounts to the same thing). 

I wonder when I will master these cravings so that they do not control my actions.  I was almost able to do it last night - - I certainly knew what was going on - - yet I still gave in to the cravings, at least partially. 

Well, no one said this road was going to be an easy one.  I am a foodaholic, and like any addictive personality, will be in "recovery" for the rest of my life.  I will have to keep being vigilant and fight the good fight every single day, because I suspect these things will keep popping up. 

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