Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Doughnuts, cookies and cakes oh my!

I'm home sick again today. However, I've been laying around more today than I did yesterday, meaning, I didn't get my walk in. I really don't think I will today. I'm just not feeling up to it and I think I should just listen to my body. Yesterday's walk wasn't over-tasking but I have more chest congestion today so felt it wise to just rest.

While laying here I've had some time to catch up on some of my friends in between catnaps. I have a friend that is also battling food addiction. He has done an amazing job, losing a great deal of weight, working out regularly, hitting the pavement and RUNNING for his life. Recently he RAN a 5k. I admire him, I am inspired by him, he IS a winner!

Recently, he has struggled more and more with binging. He has made progress and is becoming more and more transparent with his binges. He tracks them, which is one of the hardest things to do after wards, second only to TELLING someone about it. He's not just telling someone, he shares his binge with the group. This level of honesty, this amount of truth, with not only others but yourself, lends itself to true recovery of this addiction. Let me tell you, it is one of the hardest things to tell friends, relatives, ANYONE for that matter, that you just downed an entire box of doughnut holes (one of my binges from months ago).

What really drives a binge? What is it that clicks in the brain that makes us believe we want a full dozen donuts or an entire bag of chips topped off with a can chocolate fudge icing? This isn't driven by hunger - there is something much deeper pushing the compulsive eater to go on a bender.

I think it may be a combination of things for me. If I get extremely busy (I'm always busy with my family, my husband's illness, work, school, weight watchers, working out, etc.) but there are times where the load is more than normal. At those times, I feel the urge to run through McDonald's and order one of everything! (Ok, that was slightly exaggerated, but not by much!)  Additionally, when I'm unorganized, my house is a mess, perhaps my kitchen has dishes stacked in the sink, maybe my office looks like it was hit by a Category 5 hurricane - during those times of chaos my food mentality is also chaotic. Naturally, as you would expect, bad news and excessive stress also trigger binges, although I seem to be working through those a little better lately.

I would like to say I've learned to keep the perfect house, remain organized at all times, never have last night's dinner dishes in my sink the next morning, always put away everything after I finish studying and file all the important papers immediately - but alas, no, I've not yet reached June Cleaver status when it comes to housekeeping and organization. I'm trying to allow myself to let go of some of these self imposed expectations. My house will never be perfect, especially when I only spend about 8 hours per day here, with exception of the weekends when I'm buried in books. These unrealistic expectations are the same as wanting the "perfect" week on plan and when it isn't a perfect week, throwing in the towel completely. NOTHING IS PERFECT!

What I am working on is maintaining organization when it comes to my food. I track every day, if I ate it, I track it and prefer if everything is tracked BEFORE I eat it - then it's just a plan, a to do list per se, of the foods I need to consume for the day. I have forced myself into a habit that if it isn't in the tracker, it CANNOT cross my lips. That helps keep me on track most of the time. But, there are times when the addiction relapse wants to take hold. I honestly don't know how to battle that other than using distractions and even then it sometimes doesn't work.

Each day is another day fighting a battle against addiction. Friend, I hope you read this. I want you to know that you inspire me. I hope to have the success you've had and you will continue to have. I believe over the next few months we both will be celebrating major milestones, crossing off tens of pounds. We can and will do this! I believe in you and I need you to walk this road with me.

I found this link regarding Binge Eating Disorders and found it very informative.

Friends, if you are fighting a compulsive eating disorder, what do you do to avoid binges? How long has it been since you really went on a binge? Please tell me about times when you were tempted to binge, overcame the urge and successfully avoided it. What did you do during those times to be successful?


  1. Hi, My name's Melissa and I have a food addiction. I am a binge eater and a compulsive overeater. It has taken me a long time to even be able to say that I have an eating disorder. I recently begun seeing a therapist, because this was bigger than me.

    It has been about 2 weeks since I "binged". Yes just two weeks. Prior to that it was almost 4 months. I tend to eat when I am stressed, upset, angry, whatever. Instead of binging, I am learning to find ways to distract myself. I listen to my iPod. I run. (I am attempting my first 5K in April and my first 1/2 marathon in May) I do soemthing that not only helps me relieve some of the stress but takes my mind off of the food.

    I blog about my journey at


  2. The other day i was out shopping at meijer's. It has been ONLY a week and a half w/o cookies and I had to go down the soup aisle to get something and of course the cookie aisle is the same one too!! As i was passing the Oreo's I thought to myself, "If i buy it and eat in the car know one has to know." I mean i wasn't thinking just one or two cookies...i'm talking about the whole bag!!! And I even envisioned myself ripping open the bag, and eating all the cookies IN MY CAR so my husband wouldn't even find out. But, then I quickly thought to myself, why? I"m not hungry! And I also thought of all my motivations and then I decided NOPE...i'm NOT going to eat it. And i quickly went on by.

  3. Melissa,
    First let me just say I love your blog. I read a bit today and absolutely love it. I'm so glad you shared about your binge. I find after I've had a binge (and yes, as we are working our way through this there will be a few, hopefully less and less) it really feels good now to air it, let it out, tell someone about it and then move on. Congrats on attempting your first 5k in April and wow, a 1/2 marathon on May. I will watch your blog for updates on those events. How exciting!!

  4. Rob and Steph,
    I've faced that same temptation! I'm rolling over the idea of making a rule for myself - NO EATING IN THE CAR. This will be a challenge for me as I'm often eating on the go, but I find most of my binges take place in the car, all by my lonesome, discarding the evidence before I get home. Yes, I know all too well the car binge.

    Great job on avoiding it!!!! That, my friend, is a win!

  5. Hi my name is Renee and I am a compulsive eater and a binge eater. It has been four days since my last binge. It involved Tostitos, M&M's, chocolate ice cream, pasta, and more. Yeah, went to bed feeling like crap and just being completely ashamed and unhappy with myself.

    It does not take much to set me off on a binge, stress, happiness, work... you name it. Even now as I type this I am thinking of how to cure my chocolate craving. But... thankfully I have a Black bean brownie waiting in the wings.

    I have to admit that if it weren't for the folks I have met at WW's, I would never have been able to admit my addiction. And if not for them I would not have the strength to keep fighting the battle!

    Big hugs to you for your blog!!

  6. wow what a great great blog!! (which would have taken me much longer to find if you didnt comment on mine so thanks for that!), its nice to find a community of people who face similar issues and who are all so supportive. not feeling alone with my problems is a huge comfort for me. I am excited to follow your journey and I cannot wait to keep reading your beautiful posts =)

  7. Renee,
    I still need that black BEAN (yes folks, I spelled it wrong and couldn't stand for it to be here like that lol) brownie recipe, although chocolate is such a weakness it may be difficult for me not to eat all of them! I suppose the after effects of doing that even once would be enough to never do it again. Perhaps even the thoughts of it would be enough to curb that behavior.

    Glad you're "back" - I've missed you!!! BTW, an early morning, me, you, a couple treadmills and lots of sweat - soon!

  8. Teeg,
    Thank you! I'm so glad you came by to read mine and I'm so, so glad I've found your blog to follow! Your post about binging was one of the most brutally honest posts I've ever read and I thank you for sharing so much of yourself.

    I look forward to following you!

  9. I love your blog and today you gave a great service by asking this question because there is recovery from this terrible addiction.

    I am a compulsive overeater and a Food Addict. I have eaten whole pizzas and more than a gallon of ice cream (with toppings) all on the same day. I have burned my mouth eating food too hot to touch - because I could not wait a few minutes before I shoved it in my mouth. I have chewed ice cream because it was too frozen to melt fast enough for me. I ate brownie batter when I could not wait for it to bake and cool off first, then I followed it up with whole bags of Doritos and bowls of melted Velveeta with salsa (almost a vegetable, right?). I've had food behaviors I am too ashamed to share outside of my support group.

    Today I do not have to do sick things to my body. All the butter/sugar/chocolate/cheese in the world would not be enough and one bite is too much if I am going to stay free of this addiction. What worked for me was honestly admitting the foods that cause me insanity in my eating and then eliminating those foods and destructive behaviors. Then, because I am an addict and can get crazy on brussel sprouts if nothing else is available, I am in a support group that practices a 12 step program of recovery.

    Without that support system I would be unable to maintain such a significant weight loss day after day after day. I will never graduate from being an addict. I will always need to do the work if I want to keep the pounds off . The work never ends but I have never found a food that tastes better than recovery feels.

    I have over four years freedom from bingeing and weight gain due to my food addiction and behaviors. I have lost 220 pounds. Many days are blessedly easy. Some days are tough, Once in a while there is a day when it takes every prayer, every ounce of strength and every tool I can grasp to keep from falling back over the ledge. I know as long as I do not pick up food to get me through the day, the worse day in recovery will be better than the best day I ever had while bingeing.

    If you have any questions of want me to share more on specifics, please contact me.