Monday, January 25, 2010

Just like starting over

New Year's Resolutions.

I promised myself I wouldn't make any (and thus avoid the disappointment of failing to accomplish them), and I especially wouldn't resolve to lose weight, because that conjures up desperate women trying to fit into a bikini by summertime, and because it would mean that I would be buying in to all the weight loss ads (programs, pills, workouts, etc) that they run constantly starting two days before the new year.

However, it just has to be done. I'm NOT trying to fit into a bikini by summertime, but I do have to lose weight for other reasons - family history of high cholesterol and diabetes, for instance. Wanting to run a marathon, for instance. More energy and less weight to carry around, for instance. It's not about vanity, it's about staying alive, and more importantly, living well.

I'm also slowly coming to realize that as much as I hate diets and love food, I'm going to have to put myself on a lifer's diet, because that's the only way to keep myself under control. I hate the idea of having to say goodbye to all the really good fattening stuff that I love (well, most of the time), but there's no other way to do it. But I don't want to hate my life either - my doctor said that when she lost weight, she would have a piece of toast for breakfast and snack on dry, sugarless cereal throughout the day. I wanted to be like, "OH HONEY, you are so cute if you think I'm going to do that!!!!" No way - I'm determined to be "on a diet" without actually being on a diet - meaning, I want to be able to go out to eat with friends without worrying that I've ruined anything, but on normal days, I need to control what I eat. I read somewhere that if you stick to your diet 80% of the time, then that's pretty damn good, and that 20% leaves you wiggle room to be NORMAL and splurge and not always feel like you have to exclude yourself from activities because you're on a diet. Because admitting you're on a diet = admitting you are fat = admitting that you don't have your life under control. (I say that only half in jest, actually, because I do actually feel that way. Sometimes.)

Anyway, my doctor is putting me on phentermine. I've always thought weight loss pills were cheating, but if I'm going to be taking that crap from GNC, I might as well just go under medical supervision and take the real stuff. But as she warned me, it's not a magic pill, and my weight loss will be dependent on me changing my eating habits. Phentermine is an appetite suppressant, so what I'm hoping is that it will stop me from having cravings and from wanting to pig out in the afternoon, which I tend to think is my downfall. If I can stop feeling like I need to eat or even WANT to eat all the time, then I can have better control over what I do decide to eat instead of feeling like I NEED to eat everything I can get my hands on. We'll see how it goes. My order comes in tomorrow afternoon (we ordered it for cheap from the little Vietnamese pharmacy down the street from my doctor's office - SHADY!!!!), so that means I can start on Wednesday. And we're aiming for 5-8 pounds down for my next checkup, in the middle of February. You're only supposed to use phentermine for 3-6 months at a time (apparently it can be habit-forming - SHADY!!!!), so we'll see how much happens between now and then.

In the meantime, the one thing I've learned is that I have to plan. It's trite, but the saying "If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail" is very true. When I don't think ahead of time about what to eat, then I end up not eating anything or eating everything. When I have a game plan at the beginning of the day, I'm better about staying under control. So that's my first thing I'm trying to change is to plan - plan what I eat, and plan what I shop for (thus, saving money instead of throwing random stuff in my cart and then bulging my eyes out when I see the total).

I've have to say, even though I have my doubts, I am looking forward to taking this pill and feeling less hungry. Maybe it'll help me feel less dependent on food.

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