“For every diet there is an equal and opposite binge.” – Geneen Roth
Today is weigh day.
Today, Sunday, July 26, is exactly one month from the day I started a food plan that entails three balanced meals a day and two snacks. No more dieting, no more starving, no more crazy imbalanced plans that leave me emotionally drained, physically unwell and, ultimately, drive me to binge.
To keep the focus on overall wellness and not just weight loss, I only weigh once a month. I have 30 pounds to lose and I’m anxious to get to my goal. I’ve been both eagerly anticipating and dreading Weigh Day all week.
I get up in the morning, strip off all my clothes, and step onto my digital scale, which perks instantly to life thanks to new batteries. I’ve been working my ass off so I expect to see at least – at least – a six-pound drop.
My pulse quickens as I watch the numbers flicker and then display the final number. I don’t see a six-pound weight drop. Or even five. Or even four.
I see one pound. I have lost exactly one fucking pound.
What the fuck are you showing me? I shout at the scale. This can’t be right.
But it is right. My scale is, unfortunately, accurate.
I am pissed. One pound for all the grueling six-days-a-week HIIT workouts? One pound for dragging myself out for a walk after a grueling work day when all I wanted to do was sit on the couch and watch Netflix? One pound for sitting through the uncomfortable urges to binge night after night.
Yep, replies the scale. One pound.
My first thought as I put the scale back into the cabinet and head to the kitchen for coffee is all the food I am immediately cutting out: Hot cereal with butter? OUT. Avocado on my two eggs? GONE. Dressing on my salad … well, let’s not get crazy here, I do like my salad dressing.
But I am not going to enjoy it.
Luckily, after my second brew, sanity returns and I recognize the real truth: I have not binged in one month.
For one month, I have not driven to the grocery store, filled a cart with cake, cookies, half-gallons of ice cream, containers of pudding, tubs of Cool Whip, boxes of cereal and eaten all of it … down to the last crumb, down to licking the last drop of frosting off the bakery box
I have then not spent the next week physically sick and hung over; bloated and gassy; so full of self-loathing, despair and hopelessness, that I start to plan my suicide; under-performing at my job – thank God for work-from-home orders – lying to my friends about why I can’t show up and then starting another diet on Monday.
I have been spared from that literal hell.
Instead I’ve spent the month going to as many CEA-HOW meetings as I can because they are all on Zoom now; meditating, journaling, and reading spiritual books every single morning whether I want to or not; working out to Heather Roberston’s YouTube 12-week challenge (I’m on week 10 now), dancing with Sunny Funny Fitness, and sleeping.
Quarantine is a gift to me and I have dedicated myself to recovering from compulsive eating. Not losing weight … recovering on all levels.
So, yes, I’m disappointed by the one-pound weight loss. I hope every month isn’t going to be like that. But even if it is, I’ll take it.
Anything is better than destroying myself with food.
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