I’m Afraid The Time Has Come

Posted: October 25, 2011 at 7:00 am

It seems like it should come so naturally. But it doesn’t. And, honestly, I’m a little afraid. Especially since the time has come.

First, Makenzie’s birthday.

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Then…Halloween.

Then the many traditions our family has in the fall that includes good food.

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You can imagine what comes next. Thanksgiving. Christmas parties. Christmas dinners. Treats passed out every which way you turn. Holiday baking.

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Food. Food. Food. Food.

What am I getting at with all of this?

Maintenance.

I have a slight fear. Will I be able to keep maintaining the progress I have worked so hard towards? I have so far, but what about over the holidays?

You see…I feel kind of lost when it comes to holiday maintenance. Why? Because I have NEVER done it in all the years that I actually cared about my health.

Literally, NEVER! In other words, since high school, the holidays has been a time to pack on the pounds.

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old school picture of mine and Peter’s first Thanksgiving together – towards the beginning of overcoming my binge eating struggles

In high school and the first two years of college, I just ate a lot. Then, my junior year of college I went on vacation to Disney world and ate my way through the week with a “new healthy plan” to start at the New Year.

That “new healthy plan” was the beginning of my food obsession and control techniques. For the next few years, the holidays were a never ending binge and restrict cycle that always ended with me “giving up and starting fresh on January first”. It also ended with the scale reading a good 10 pounds more. At least. For me to restrict my way back down from later on.

Finally, my relationship with food changed…but the holidays still weren’t for maintenance.

Four years ago – I was trying to conceive Makenzie and on the tail end of binging issues. Three years ago – I was a first time and new mom, who didn’t even think of the word “healthy” the first 6 weeks post-partum. Two years ago – I was having to force myself to gain weight in order to regain my cycle post fitness competition. One year ago, I was pregnant with a sweet tooth that wouldn’t stop and supposed to gain weight, of course.

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It’s not an exaggeration. I have NEVER maintained my weight over the holidays and for some reason I find myself struggling with the concept.

Quite frankly, that pisses me off!

I KNOW what works for me to have a healthy balance. I KNOW what to do to stay on track. I KNOW I can work dang hard to care for myself.

So why in the heck am I not trusting myself to do the same for the next 2.5 months?

Just because I haven’t been able to before doesn’t mean I won’t be able to now. I cannot let doubt get in the way. Who am I to doubt myself?

I know what to do and I will do it. Look for another post coming on my “maintenance game plan”. But in essence, I will have my (pumpkin cheese)cake and I will eat it too.

I refuse to not enjoy the celebration that comes with this time of year we are fast approaching. But, more importantly, I refuse…REFUSE…to go back to my old ways. Who wants to knock the crap out of doubt with me? Punch

  • Is there a healthy habit you sometimes doubt in yourself?

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83 Comments to “I’m Afraid The Time Has Come”
  1. I’m going to be on this mission with you Tina! I ALWAYS gain weight over the holidays and that’s because I love holiday baking and always overindulge!

    I’m going to do my best to maintain my weights while indulging when I want too but not going overboard!

    Good luck!

  2. Peter looks so young in that photo of you guys! Wow! (Not that he looks old now, you know what I mean!)

  3. The holidays have also always been a battle for me. It used to be a free for all followed by rejoining Weight Watchers in January. But last year it all kind of changed when I had to get in shape for my April wedding. My fear of having to lose 10 regular pounds and then potentially another 10 lbs put on from holiday eating come January scared me and forced me to be more conscious of my food choices and exercise. I still enjoyed all the great food and treats and didn’t feel like I was deprived at all, plus I lost 5 lbs. Win-win. I just have to remember that experience as I go into this holiday season.

  4. Michelle says:

    Stay busy, stay focused, keep up with your workouts and keep everything in moderation — and I have a feeling you will surprise yourself!

    Just remember that even if you DO gain – you can easily take those pounds off again after the holidays. It’s OK to gain a little – it doesn’t have to become a spiral. Weight gain doesn’t define you – your beautiful spirit does!

  5. you can do it!! Don’t let yourself get in your head.

  6. Therese says:

    I’m right there with you. I have a very all-or-nothing attitude but balance it key and one treat doesn’t have to turn into 20. This will be the year! I think what I need to do is to maintain some semblance of structure. Lack of control in my day in general leads to overeating for me. If I start my morning off right (prayer, working out) and end my day with stretching and more prayer (plus a decent bedtime) I think it’ll be okay. Thanks for your honesty! It’s good to know I’m not alone.

  7. Kiah says:

    I was literally having this conversation in my Behavior THeory class yesterday–the trick is in repeating the new/changed behavior, not so much doing it once. Honestly, though, you WILL NOT revery back because you can feel how strong and healthy you are NOW, and won’t want to lose that feeling. And of course, the whole blogosphere will be here, supporting one another with healthful noms through the New Year :-)

  8. The holiday season can be really hard to get through, but you have all the right tools mentally and physically to get through them. I have no doubt that you can soooo do it and be an inspiration to others at the same time!

  9. I’m always bad about balance. I love eating fruits and veggies but I love carbs way more. I know all the tools to stay on track but it’s always easier said than done.

  10. Tiffany says:

    I’m also quite nervous about about the upcoming holidays, but unlike you I am looking to lose weight instead of just maintain. Last year I was also pregnant (with my 3rd) and bascially ate whatever I wanted. This year is going to be drastically different but I’m not going to deny myself my favorites. A treat once a week or just on Thanksgiving (and not the day after as well) will not kill my weight loss journey.

    There are so many cute baked goods that I want to make with my older kids but I am scared to have them in the house. If they are here I will eat them. My solution is to eat one and let my kids eat one (or two) and then send them to my hubby’s work so they are out of the house. Hopefully that works!

  11. Great post Tina :) You put my exact thoughts and fears into this post. Its comforting to know that other people worry and struggle with this too. But you’re right. You will get through this- have confidence in the fact that you do know what you’re doing. Have faith that you will enjoy yourself and take care of yourself at the same time. :)

  12. Ela says:

    I totally believe that you can do it! A big part of my trust in this is that you’re posting this now. Acknowledging that something is in your space is a huge part of deciding how you want it to inhabit that space, instead of being at its mercy.

    love
    Ela

  13. Loved this post. I needed to read it today too. I’ve been a little to lenient on my Halloween treats lately and it’s way too early to get treat happy! Maintenance is a good goal. Still enjoy, but don’t go overboard. Thanks for sharing.

  14. Holly says:

    I always appreciate your honesty! It’s so nice to be able to relate to a blogger because sometimes bloggers can give the impression that they have it all figured out, which makes the blog less enjoyable to read (I think, anyway.)

    I’m nervous about the holidays, too. I gained five pounds last year which in hindsight wouldn’t be a big deal…except they never came off. I’m still carrying last year’s holiday weight and I’m scared I’m going to gain more! I have never maintained over the holidays, either.

  15. Great post Tina! I can totally relate to this and feel the same anxiety. For many years except for last year, I had always been either underweight or on the lower end of a healthy weight so I felt I always had a buffer to work with and in my mind knew I could afford a 5-10 lb. weight gain and used it to my advantage during the holiday season – isn’t it crazy how the mind works?! But now at a healthy weight and at maintenance, I really need to pay attention and not go overboard, while at the same time enjoying those special treats that are only around this time of year…life is too darn short not too enjoy them! :)

    I have faith in you Tina that you can do it and we’re all here to support you :)

  16. Julia says:

    I have been maintaining a 20 lb weight loss for 5.5 yrs and I still don’t feel confident! Reading your blog definitely helps, so hopefully you can help lead me :)

    I try hard to not get discouraged and keep up any healthful habits I can, even if I know I’ve eaten more than my body needs for one day (or more!).

    Thanks Tina for a wonderful blog!

  17. Abby says:

    Isn’t it crazy that we can allow food to completely consume us?! Gosh. It’s just food, right?!?! I wish that were the case. I’ve battled with food and dieting and self image for as long as I can remember. I always pray over my meals, but I find myself praying in a different way. “God, I thank you for the food which I am about to receive. I pray that I can look at it in a thankful way rather than a fearful way. Father, I pray that this food will nourish me and not deter me from achieving my goals.” Tina, I’ll be praying for you over the holiday season that you can enjoy food and family and celebrations and parties and everything fun that comes your way without second guessing yourself. If it helps, you’ve encouraged me a ton as I’ve read about your journey through your blog. Thank you for your encouragement, advice and faith.

  18. Amy says:

    Tina, your story rings of all the same feelings as mine in so many ways. This year I am finally going to be celebrating the holidays at my goal weight. The mystical weight that I have been working towards for the past two years. Of course, I am completely panicked about any celebrations that may come my way involving food but I am learning not to be. I am taking a breath. I am trusting my body to tell me when it is hungry and when it isn’t. I’ll be having my sugar cookie and taking my walk or run that day. Most of all I am going to remind myself to relax and enjoy what the holiday season is really all about, my family and friends and spending some quality time with them.
    You need to remember how far you have come and how much your healthy behaviours are now part of who you are. The old you that binged and restricted belongs to a different time, there is no room for her at the table now. You are now, you control the decisions. So no doubt okay?

  19. Shannon says:

    Tina, I am sooooo with you on this!! I’m in the beginning stages of eating more intuitively and overcoming my binge eating issues, and the holidays terrify me. But you know what…I know what to do, and so do you. We know how to make healthy choices (for our bodies and our minds) and we know when we’ve had enough. We’ve got this!! :)

  20. Mish says:

    This is what I ask myself: why do I bolt to food during the holidays? It’s not about denying or even planning…what emotional ties and fear surrounds these times that you find yourself using food to bolt from?

  21. Anna Crouch says:

    Ahh, Yes!! Although this is the first year in a long time I have not caught myself fearing the coming holidays, I still am in the same boat. I refuse to not enjoy the holiday food, but I also refuse to go back to my old ways and overdo it, because of the anxiety of it all. I’m excited to see your plan!

  22. Melissa says:

    This post makes so much sense! It’s scary to think about letting go and gaining weight. Yet, I don’t want to deprive myself of things I love either. I figure that I only get some things (like my Grandma’s baking) once a year. I take small portions and enjoy what I eat. I continue to exercise and it all works out in the end–I don’t feel deprived and any weight gain is just minimal.

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