Thursday, August 27, 2015

August 27th, 2015 What I Love

August 27th, 2015 What I Love

Every now and then I'll receive a specific request. I was slightly amused by the message awaiting me this morning from a long time loyal reader:

Janie writes: "I've read your blog for years and noticed you rarely post bathroom selfies. Most of your selfies are close up. In a bathroom mirror it's better because it shows more. Anyway. Could you post one? Hope my request isn't taken in a bad way. All of my selfies are in my bathroom mirror. Alot of people do that. Thank you for writing what you do every day. It helps me."

Okay, Janie. First of all, thank you for reading my blog and secondly, is bathroom selfies a thing? I mean, yeah--I know people post a bunch of them, I just didn't know it was such a popular thing or its own style/category of selfie. I snapped a couple after washing my hands thoroughly this afternoon. Here you go--and thank you for the smile this morning!
 photo Bathroom20Selfies_zpsdfemlpxn.jpg
I feel silly, really. I imagine my daughters thinking-- oh boy, there's dad doing his best to look cool, again! I am so NOT cool most of the time. This is me acting cool.

I had a really good day. It was long, but productive. And productive feels good even when productive translates to super busy. I took the time to prepare some good food today. I'm especially proud of the beef alfredo pizza for lunch. That was a delicious bunch of pizza for 550 calories!

We had a great discussion today in the exclusive private support group I co-facilitate with Life Coach Gerri Helms, about eating what we enjoy along the way and how that helps. I didn't get permission to share anyone else's responses, but I'll share mine:

I've always maintained the mantra "I eat what I love and nothing I don't," through my initial weight loss and now. Of course now, for me, there's an asterisk to that-- *as long as "what I love" doesn't contain refined sugar.

I've discovered how much I love all kinds of foods-- all without the added ingredient that triggers the addictive side of my brain. I enjoy my food immensely. The time I take in preparation is honoring my commitment in taking extraordinary care. This was one of the strong points in my book-- If we force ourselves to eat things we wouldn't normally, or just plain can't stand, as a means to lose weight, then we're not happy. It is a chore at that point. And further, it creates a temporary diversion from who we are--until whatever goal we set is achieved-- then we relent and return in full force to what we love to eat.

I could have lost weight eating salads and hated every bite along the way. Or, I can make sure what I'm eating is something I love anyway-- and make sure it fits the boundaries of my food plan-- and have an enjoyable/pleasurable experience as I redefine my relationship with food into something grounded in recovery principles-- something I can enjoy and practice for the rest of my life-- not just until I hit a certain weight or a certain jeans size.

Of course, the other side of this food relationship equation is the emotional/stress eating dynamic.

This side isn't necessarily triggered by "the drug." And it is entirely possible to eat excessively into a food coma without violating my "no refined sugar" personal rule.

So then what?

If I'm loving what I'm eating and it isn't a chore or something I dread each day--- What stops me from piling it on in times of extreme stress and emotions-- or when I'm simply tired and grumpy or having a bad day in general? 

Answer: Good support. I think we can all agree that food isn't a fixer of the stressful and emotional situations we encounter. It's merely a distraction-- taking us away from something unpleasant and replacing it for a little while with something pleasurable... It's an escape.

This escape always worked best in isolation, far away from others... Because I didn't want them to witness my gorging for comfort and often for sport, simply because it tastes so good...

Good support makes a tremendous difference. Good accountability measures can motivate us to make it through in order to maintain the integrity of our stated goals. Good support is invited into our heads where the thoughts and feelings live, where we can get another opinion--another's perspective, in an effort to really identify what's going on and figure out better, more productive alternatives.

I had a really good body weight strength training workout tonight. I'm calling it a good Thursday.
I hope you had a wonderful Thursday, too!

My Tweets Today:

Thank you for reading and your continued support,


  1. I admire your commitment to your goals but don't you ever want cake on your birthday? Your commitment is so strong something that I can't seem to do long term. I have kept off most of my weight except I go up and down 5-15 lbs because of my sugar binges. I want to start a blog but haven't figured how to. I was read a lot of your blogs and find your blog helpful.

  2. On Facebook a lots of kids post selfies in the bathroom, it always struck me so funny and just not right. Now your a cool kid lol. We had tourists in the mall using a selfie stick and recording themselves walking and people photo bombed them, it was amusing.

  3. Ahhhh . . .you bring up food as comfort when stressed or upset. How familiar! Even though I never went through a bag of chips or package of cookies - still, I could pick my way through a steady stream of bad, high calorie choices. I've often thought about, and even talked of food as comfort and punishment and prison in those circumstances. I wonder if the search for alternative means of comfort has been difficult because other choices don't meet the punishment and prison criteria? Does support break that paradigm? I feel like it's less about the desire to eat and more about needing to get out of that head space.

    On a brighter note, I did manage to navigate a business trip this week really well. Got a few odd looks as I walked laps outside the hotel in the mornings but it felt good to hit my exercise as well as food, water and sleep goals!

  4. Your shirt is too big, go down a size.

  5. You've clearly found what works for you, and you're working it (and it shows)! That said, your philosophy of "I eat what I love and nothing I don't," sounds a LOT like my four year old nephew's philosophy (and if he had his way, he'd eat nothing but plain white pasta and butter with lots of salt). So that kind of thinking might not work for everyone (and if you're a four year old, that philosophy might precede a temper tantrum).

    Sean, please acknowledge that what you "like" has evolved over the past several years-- you now include a variety of vegetables and fruit in your diet, way more than you might have at the beginning of your journey!

    And so I challenge you to add another line to your philosophy. "I eat what I love and nothing I don't," is great--- but how about and also, "My tastes are evolving along with me in my journey, and I commit to finding new food I like along the way."

    Keep on rocking, friend.

  6. Thank you for your consistent blogging. I have read your blog for a few years now, and it is definitely a help to me. I have been thinking a lot lately about what my food triggers are. I notice that you never eat bread. You don't even eat any kind, even those that might be considered more healthy. Is that because it might contain sugar or gluten? Or maybe it is a trigger to overeating? I'm trying to figure this out for myself. I love bread, but haven't been eating it on my weight loss journey, but I wonder, if at some point I could eat certain kinds, which made me wonder why you don't eat it. Thanks :)

  7. This one hit home for me, Sean. I even devoted today's blog to the thoughts you've shared here. You've inspired me to start cooking more for myself and eating a wider variety of foods, instead of the same old, same old. And I certainly understand what you mean about having good support. Without it, I wouldn't have even made it 6 weeks! Thanks again for the inspiration and congratulations on your success!

  8. I have nothing new to say that everyone here hasn't said. It just makes sense that you eat what you love. Although I love my salads.. yes, I'm a veggie chunky, it does get so boring. Some times I think to myself as I sit and stare at my plate... "gross, not again" but I eat it....
    I learn more and more reading your blog , your words and your life's mission... to be happy as you get healthy....
    And so she goes on....
    Happy Weekend, Sean!
    Oh and I like the "cool" selfie... I've done a few , never in a bathroom.. sometimes I just can't look at myself!

    Rosie :)


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