Friday 18 October 2013

88 days

88 days, sober. 
88 days, without a hit.
88 days, challenge.
88 days, torment.
88 days, wanting to cheat.
88 days, having the opportunity to cheat.
88 days, remembering of what is important.
88 days, cravings intensify.
88 days, starting to feel like I will make it.

Some people do not seem to understand that food addiction is quite like alcohol addiction. It is a constant struggle and a pain in the ass!   I have trouble with will power.  After coming off an extreme (in my opinion) detox, knowing I can re-introduce foods was a great moment!  I could not wait to have some rice and peas, some good cooked foods, some REAL food!  But what happened was that little voice in my head, Gary, said, ''you can have some junk foods too, just a bit?  Maybe the healthier junk foods. No chips or fries, but what's wrong with just a burger?''  And I say out loud, ''NO!!''

I go to my acting class every Tuesday night. After class, I am so tempted to have a slice of pizza from the pizza place next door to the acting studio.  I manage to walk past it and get in my car.  But as I drive, Gary says, ''Just a bite of something!'' He tries to take control of the car and make me stop to buy something, but I have to overpower him and drive straight home. Sometimes I might have some carrot sticks and I would eat those, or I drown Gary with water to the point I feel so full I cannot eat even if I wanted to.

Another thing, would you expect to see a recovering alcoholic working in a bar?  Well that is my issue as well.  No, I do not drink and never was an alcoholic, what I mean is, I am an food addict and I work in a family owned Caribbean grocery store!  We sell so much good tasting things!

From hot Jamaican patties... spice buns... Trinidad style Doubles and Chicken roti!
Jamaican patties have about the same nutritional value as a Big Mac! I would eat 2 as a snack. The Spice bun would be breakfast, plain and simple.  Trinidad style doubles are SOOO good, those are the yellower ones in the pic.  They are curried chick peas between two slices of 'bread' called bara, that is deep fried. The roti is THE best!  It can be curried chicken or goat in a roti, which is like a huge pita bread but better!
So you see my dilemma! Especially when I am hungry at work.  There is also something called rock cakes (The pic I took did not come good.).  It is a huge coconut cookie that comes in 2-packs or 6-packs.  2-pack is a snack and 6-pack would be meal.  This is how I use to eat!  I DO NOT WANT TO DO THIS ANYMORE!!!!
I will be leaving my job in January.  Not for these reasons of food addiction, but for other personal reasons and choices.  But to get away from the temptation would be a huge benefit to me as well.  Think of the smell of your favourite food. Smell it everyday and constantly have to make the choice not to eat it. 
88 days, done.
88 days, over.
88 days, deep breathing.
88 days, one day at a time.
88 days, just the beginning.

Wednesday 16 October 2013

Finally pics are up!

I Finally loaded my pics!  Find them in my pics section!  These are my October 1st weigh-in at 289 pounds.  Now, watch me change! Funny how when I see my own pics, I want to push harder to look better for the next set of pics I need to take! 

Thursday 3 October 2013

October Update

As of October 1 2013 I am down to 289 pounds!  It is not a staggering amount of weight lost since July 1 2013, where I weighed in at 307 pounds, but a pound lost is a pound lost!  I am turning up the workouts for October and I will have a better loss for Novembers weigh-in.  Also, pictures will be coming soon!  I had to re-take pictures since my old computer with all my pics is not working anymore! 

This was also suppose to me a video update but I have been under the weather lately with a flu and now got some sort of virus today.  But NO EXCUSES! This is not going to hold me back!  I will post a vid soon, pictures coming within the next few days or hours too. 

Thursday 26 September 2013

Eating without fear, guilt, shame OR TO PLEASE SOMEONE ELSE!!!

You may or may not have come across my blog post from last year around this same time,  It is about me and how my wife caught me cheating on my diet and how it has really effected me/us and my promise to NEVER do it again! (I notice I am a big fat hypocrite after typing this!)

Well, fast forward to this past end of June and my wife finds out that I was doing it again.  Eating other foods outside, like junk foods and I mean the worst kinds! So she did a one-on-one intervention with me.  She wanted me to do a Raw food detox and that since she is a health coach, to let her help me.  I said ok for different reasons.  I wanted to make a change in my diet but going on the raw food detox, well, I did it mainly because she wanted me to.  I felt like I owed it to her to do the detox, but along the way, I saw it as I NEEDED to do this to save my life! NOT JOKING! My life depended on it.  And I am thankful I have such a supportive wife to help me on my journey.

I have done raw before for 30 days and it was fine, but this time was hard.  I wanted to cheat SO SO bad, but I know how much I have riding on my this.  I have not lost a huge amount of weight since doing the raw food detox and I think that is mostly because of toxins in my body.  But I have finished with the detox this past Saturday and re-introduce cooked foods back into my eating plan.  So this week, I had a cauliflower mash.  It is a mashed potato replacement.  It was so good, but I ate too much of it for my first day back on cooked foods and my stomach was heavy!  I will stick with the green juices everyday and sometimes smoothies too.

But all this to say, I have finally come to see that for the past 35 years, I have always been eating to please others.  There lies the fear of being caught when eating out. The guilt of knowing I should not be having that piece of cake.  The shame felt when it is found out by people I love and I feel that I 'let them down.'

The past two Wednesdays, I was doing a First Aid class for work.  I took my smoothie and my green juice with me.  Nearby is the Atwater Market, where they have fresh farmers produce, fresh meats, a bakery and a real nice gourmet pizza place!  Yes, I could have eaten junk, but I didn't.  Yes, I could be lying to you right now, but I'm not. This blog is here to keep me accountable for the things I do! To potentially help someone else by seeing my flaws on my journey. 

I did buy something though, I bought a container of fresh strawberries! No it was not organic but I ate it without any hesitation!  I ate it consciously and savoured every bite.  For that half hour I was eating strawberries I felt free.  Liberated.  I know what I am doing THIS TIME! This time, I am eating for me!  Anyone, ANYONE else can get mad, sad, upset or whatever other emotion you can think of, over what I eat.  BUT I will not eat something or refrain from eating something because of someone else.  NOT ANYMORE!!! I had non-organic strawberries and I enjoyed it GUILT FREE!  Now, you might be thinking, 'what is the big deal with non-organic strawberries?'  The 'big deal' is that I just finished a DETOX and eating non-organic is putting the chemicals back into me!  That's why.  But what is done is done and I have no regrets.

I know that Thanksgiving is coming up, as well as the holiday season.  I will make my choices as to what I eat out.  I will make conscious decisions.  I am tired of avoiding going to certain social gatherings because of wanting to look good and not eat certain things.  I will eat the foods I know is best for me.  The grilled veggies, the salad, a piece of chicken.  NOT the mashed potatoes and gravy or the dinner rolls.  But this is not tomorrow or even the day after!  I am still doing the reintroduction of foods for the next couple of weeks. One food at a time, so quinoa tomorrow, then detox for a day, then chick-peas the other day and detox the day after that.  So I can see if the foods I reintroduce effect me in any way.  Last time I did raw, over a year ago, after that, I had my mothers rice and peas and I was ready to pass out like it was Thanksgiving dinner!  So I want to see how each food effects me.

Now I choose to eat with pleasure.  I totally savoured these strawberries.  I wanted it all week long.  That morning when I woke up, I was patiently waiting for noon so I could go have my strawberry orgasm.  I did and I enjoyed it!

Here is the cauliflower mash recipe:

Sunday 22 September 2013

Realization in the metro

This past Tuesday I started an acting class and it was so much fun.  It was down-town and the teacher told me it would be better to take public transit than to drive because of parking.  Well several things happened with my journey in the Montreal transit system.

First, this was the first time in years (8 years minimum) since I took bus and metro in Montreal.  Usually I drive everywhere I need to go.  So there was some changes, mostly with the method of payment.  There is a new card called an OPUS pass.  Well, my wife had one and told me to just put some money on it and away I go on the metro.  I went to the teller and she said that the card is expired.  How can a card you need to charge up be expired?  She said it expired last year and to just throw it away.  She can sell me a new OPUS card for $6, plus whatever amount of money I want to put on it.  But a one-way pass is $3. So I just bought a one-way pass and off I went.  The metro seemed to have gotten dirtier in the past couple of years. Mostly graffiti and old news papers flying around.  On the plus side was an automated voice that stated the name of each up coming station.

On my way back home I could not get over how many people had earphones on that were connected to cellphones.  Nearly everybody was either listening to music or playing games or reading on their mobile devices.  Ok, when I was in school, we all had a Walkman (remember those?) or cd players.  But hardly anybody was sitting still just 'being.'  It was interesting to look around at everyone and see the trouble they have to just disconnect and BE.  Luckily for me I forgot my earphones at home and could not listen to music on my journey.  Especially on the bus, people without earphones would continually look at their cellphones from time to time. 

Yes, at times I have trouble disconnecting as well.  But not to the point of obsession.  I do not have a data plan on my phone, so if there is no free Wi-Fi well, my phone is just a phone! There are games and music on it, but I am not constantly on it and I do not have time or patience for a game.  It really feels good to just be sitting there, or better yet, go for a walk without the distraction.  I love going for a walk with my phone in my pocket and no earphones on.  Just letting my mind be free to wander, to look around and truly see the sights around me, to consciously take a deep breath and feel the freshness of the air and most importantly, hear any oncoming traffic as I cross a street!

The last realisation I had was how bad out of shape I am in! Oh man! Time to turn up the dial on my workouts!  The travelling was fun, just too late for me.  Being the father of two girls, I am home early and in bed even earlier.  So when the class is over and I travel back home, 10:30 at night feels like 2am for me.  But that is not the out of shape part.  The out of shape part came the next day when both my legs were sore!  My calves were hurting going up and down a flight of stairs! Even sitting on the toilet was hard to do.  I decided to make my workouts better and modify less.  So instead of stepping up from down-dog position to bent barback, I started jumping up.  Instead of 3-count push-ups on the knees, I started 3-count push-ups no knees unless absolutely necessary.

As for the acting class now, that was a blast!  I had so much fun and I cannot wait for Tuesday's now.  It really got me out of my comfort zone. There was even a point when the teacher called upon me to present first.  That was hard for me.  But I got up there, did my thing and it was great!  This was only the first class!  Going from a shy guy to a more confident guy seems like a fun journey!  What changes and revelations will next class bring!

Saturday 14 September 2013

WHY have goals and rewards

Last night I posted about setting goals and having rewards.  Today, I was asked why.  Questions like, 'Rewards seems so childish.  Do you as an adult really NEED a reward?  Why? Why can't you just attain your goal and let that be the end of it?'  Well here is why. 

First let me start with goals.  Everyone should have goals in life.  No matter what your age, gender, capabilities, WHATEVER!  Goals are needed.  Think for a minute if you had no goals to attain.  Would you feel fulfilled?  Would you feel happy?  Just living from day to day without any point, without any direction?  That is no way to live. Trust me, I know!  For the longest while in my life, I did not set any goals.  Just went to work, came home, ate, slept.  What kind of life is that?  Seems pretty boring... and it was. 

With goals, it gives me the feeling of accomplishing something.  It makes me feel important.  It gives me purpose.  I feel alive with goals.  To look ahead and see in the horizon, my goal being attained.  To look back and see the road that got me here.  To look at where I am going AND to openly accept that hurdles will show up and it is up to me on how to jump over it, or stumble, fall down and get back up again.  Goals give me a drive, it makes me feel alive, it makes me feel important.

Now for the childish topic of rewards. Rewards do not have to be an extravagant thing.  Make it something small.  My example was that of going to see a movie or watch a television program.  If you are going to do those things anyways, why not make it a reward for attaining a goal?  It will be much more pleasurable to know you had to work for it.  I have not gone out to see a movie in the longest while! But with the goals and rewards it gives me something to look forward to.  I was already planning on watching the Doctor Who Special online in November, so why not make it a reward? If I do not reach my goal, well, no Doctor Who!  It is something I really want to see and since I put it as a reward it will really help me to stay focused and achieve my goal. 

Think of a boxer, his goal is to be the best! The reward is the title belt, money, fame and women! Ok money, fame and women are kind of a second reward, but in his goal to be the best, to be the top boxer, the reward is standing tall with the title belt wrapped around his waist.  The belt represents that he has attained his goal of being the best.  It makes his view on his uphill battle all the more worthwhile.

Rewards, when kept reasonable, can be a great motivating factor! It is for me.  Is it childish?  Maybe and that is ok with me. Because with goals and rewards I feel alive and I am enjoying my life. 

I know I could have easily edited my last post and put this on there too, but I think this information was worthy of its own post.

Friday 13 September 2013

Goals and rewards

There is nothing better than a reward, especially when that reward is for reaching a goal!  All my rewards in the past use to be food.  Ever since I was a kid, the reward was food. 

Passed a class                                = food
Was nice to my sister                    = food
Helped out around the house         = food
Got my drivers licence                  = food

So when I decided to change my life and put some goals in, it was quite the challenge to find a reward that was not food. I remember just a few months ago starting this and saying to my wife, 'I don't want anything.  I would just rather go Chinatown and have green curry chicken!'  Of course that did not happen.  But since then, I have decided that when I reach a goal, I would put money aside for something that I would want at a later date. 

For example, I have a weekly goals list, if I reach my goals every week, I get my reward.  My reward would be to put aside some money for the future when I find something I want.  At least this way, the money will be there for me to buy it.  It is MY money, I can spend it on whatever I want.  This past week, we went over budget and did not have enough for groceries.  So I took MY banked up reward money and used that for groceries.  I could have easily bought the stuff on my credit card and placed it back from my next paycheck but it would still not be balanced out our weekly budget.  So this way, my kids get to eat and next weeks budget is on track!

Aside from money being put away, another reward of mine is to go see a movie.  There is a local Dollar-cinema!  Movies are just $2 plus tax!  And on top of that, there is a meet-up group that does free movies there from time to time.  I saw Man of Steel there for FREE and this past Saturday I saw Star Trek Into Darkness there for FREE too!  Now, if I did not meet my goals, I would not have been able to go and see those films. 

Also my rewards have since evolved.  I have it written out that, when I meet my September goals, I will now be able to schedule a massage for myself!  Now to build up the money jar back again so I can go get the massage.

Also, my eating habits have lost its FUN lately.  So I want to put the FUN back in as a reward too.  But this time, it will not be junk foods like burgers and fries or fried chicken or ice cream or even a cola.  This time, I want to make the reward something my body will thank me for.  For example, a meal at the organic vegan raw food restaurant or even something as simple as buying a kombucha drink from my local organic grocery. 

You also know about my long term goal of being DDP yoga certified on July 13 2014! That is its own reward! 

For more about my goals, check out my Goals page!