Recommended Posts

Call me Phoenix. I started the Whole30 on March 17th 2018. It was absolute hell. I've never had my body feel worse. For 10 straight days I had a pounding headache/migraine, I had no strength in my body, I couldn't sleep, and I just felt completely miserable. I could hardly move around the house. Granted, all I had been eating was carbs, dairy, sugar and more sugar, so I knew stopping it all at once would be harsh, but I felt it had to be done. I didn't except the fallout to be so hard on my body; that was a wake up call.

Then day 10 hit, and I don't know if it was some new medication I started for anxiety or what, but s--- hit the fan. I went from following the plan completely for 10 days to running out to the store for some lemon juice and coming back with a handful of candy bars, 4 slices of pizza from Pizza Pipeline, and devouring half a carton of Tillamook ice cream with 2 cans of diet and caffeine free soda.

And I hated myself for it, because I instantly felt better. My headache went away, I got my energy back, and I've slept better last night and today than I can remember sleeping in weeks.

But then the reality hit me. I was 10 days in to the Whole30, and I threw it all down the drain. And my cravings for junk are worse than today than they were yesterday.

At my heaviest, I was 280lbs. Before my binge yesterday, I was at 225lbs. This morning, I was back up to 230lbs. Is that even possible? Did I eat 5lbs worth of crap?

I'm totally devastated. Not only do I have to start over completely (Yes, I absolutely have to start over 100%) I have no idea what made me break so badly yesterday, but the worst of it is, IS THAT I KNEW EXACTLY WHAT I WAS DOING. No one forced pizza down my throat. No one scooped ice cream into the bowl for me. I did it all on my own. And I hate myself for it.

This time last year I was down to 170lbs. Long story short, calling off my wedding 3 days before did not help matters, and I spent a good 4 months in bed crying, depressed, and eating everything within sight, which rocketed me up to 250lbs. But I don't want to live like this anymore! I don't want food to control me or my life! I am desperately, desperately ready to get over this garbage and eat well.

I've made sure my meals were balanced with the whole 30... good fats, a fair amount of protein, lots of veggies and some fruit with a meal, and as much water as I can remember to make myself drink. But for some reason, I AM HUNGRY ALL THE TIME NO MATTER HOW MUCH I EAT and I hate it. I did finally go to the doctors yesterday to have them test my thyroid and hormone levels, because intense hunger is something I've been dealing with for years now.

But I feel like I let myself down so badly. I mean come on.... I had made it 10 whole days!!!!

My plan is water fast Thursday, Friday, and Saturday (if I feel like I'm dying I'll have a small amount of veggies and protein once a day) and then to restart my Whole30 on April 1st. I'm just hoping that I wont have to deal with the miserable fly like symptoms I got the first week I tried.

Do any of you have any advice for getting through this? And for not feeling like a total failure when you mess up? I know what the rules are, and this wasn't a tiny slip. It was a major one. And starting over is the only choice I have if I'm serious about really doing this. But man. I just feel worthless. My goal weight is 130-140lbs. I just want to be there by this time next year. So why do I feel like I won't make it? :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are not worthless. You are a beautiful person who is struggling with something many, many people struggle with relating to food. You had some rough times and turned to food for comfort, which is a really hard habit to break. Now you're ready to move on with the rest of your life. That's great. But you can't expect that everything will go perfectly from the get-go. That's not how life works. 

So first let's start with -- why fast? You made bad choices, sure, but days of fasting sounds like you are punishing yourself for those choices, and that's really not something we want you to do. You don't deserve that kind of punishment. Would you treat someone else that way, forcing them to have water and maybe a few vegetables just because they made some bad choices? (Also, if you're always hungry anyway, starving yourself is really not going to help.) 

Let's skip the weight stuff for a bit. For 30 days, whenever you decide to restart, eat until you're not hungry, even if it feels like more food than even a ravenous teenage boy would eat at an all you can eat buffet. Don't think about calories or fat grams, just decide that if your body is hungry, you are going to give it food until it isn't hungry anymore. (I'm assuming there were no underlying medical conditions causing you to feel hunger when you aren't really hungry.)  It's 30 days, just see what happens. If this means that you eat four eggs, two big handfuls of spinach, a sweet potato, some onions and bell pepper, and an entire avocado for breakfast, do that. That would actually be a meal that meets the meal template, more toward the larger end of it for a lot of people, but still within the template.

After 30 days of not even thinking about weight, see how you feel and what's going on at that point.  If you have gained weight, or you're not feeling good, we can figure out where to go from there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ShannonM816 said:

You are not worthless. You are a beautiful person who is struggling with something many, many people struggle with relating to food. You had some rough times and turned to food for comfort, which is a really hard habit to break. Now you're ready to move on with the rest of your life. That's great. But you can't expect that everything will go perfectly from the get-go. That's not how life works. 

So first let's start with -- why fast? You made bad choices, sure, but days of fasting sounds like you are punishing yourself for those choices, and that's really not something we want you to do. You don't deserve that kind of punishment. Would you treat someone else that way, forcing them to have water and maybe a few vegetables just because they made some bad choices? (Also, if you're always hungry anyway, starving yourself is really not going to help.) 

Let's skip the weight stuff for a bit. For 30 days, whenever you decide to restart, eat until you're not hungry, even if it feels like more food than even a ravenous teenage boy would eat at an all you can eat buffet. Don't think about calories or fat grams, just decide that if your body is hungry, you are going to give it food until it isn't hungry anymore. (I'm assuming there were no underlying medical conditions causing you to feel hunger when you aren't really hungry.)  It's 30 days, just see what happens. If this means that you eat four eggs, two big handfuls of spinach, a sweet potato, some onions and bell pepper, and an entire avocado for breakfast, do that. That would actually be a meal that meets the meal template, more toward the larger end of it for a lot of people, but still within the template.

After 30 days of not even thinking about weight, see how you feel and what's going on at that point.  If you have gained weight, or you're not feeling good, we can figure out where to go from there.

Thank you so much for your response. It was right on. I guess I thought if I fasted for a few days to get the excess sugar I ate burned out, that I could start fesh on April 1st and try again and hopefully. I've been feeling so weak from this "carb flu" I've barely had the strength to exercise so I know I'm not burning off the sugar like I should. I thought maybe a few days of water fasting (and when it becomes unbearable have a piece of chicken with some raw veggies) would help me to get back on track. I also know I need to force myself to walk, even if its just 20 minutes a day. I know I shouldn't be weighing myself but its just become a force of habit :( I am going to attempt to stay away form the scale completely from now until May, walk every day, and pay a lot more attention to what I eat. And when I get cravings, I"ll have to find something to distract myself.

I appreciate your words so much. I really want to do this. I feel like this year is the year that I have to make these changes or it will never happen! It's very hard living with 2 other people although one of them is trying the whole30 as well and she is doing so much better than I am. She has a lot more self control than I have!

I think a major part of my problem is boredom. I work from home, not very much, and I have a little bit too much spare time on my hands. In the past, when I was bored, I would just eat. I need to figure out ways to occupy my time wisely. Again, something I really need to work on!

Thank you so much for all your input!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can relate to your post a lot! It is hard to get through the first part of Whole30 for sure.

My recommendation is to use this forum's log, too: https://forum.whole30.com/forum/24-your-whole30-log/

It is a great way to keep track of what you are eating AND feeling. Also, if you go a through 10 days and still feel terrible, you can go to the troubleshooting forum and ask for help, and link your food log. The mods are great about looking at your food log and saying "Oh, you should definitely be eating more fat!" etc etc

You also said you started anxiety medication, when I started taking Lexapro for depression I really did feel ravenous! So I think it could actually effect your appetite. I seem to have gotten used to it over the year or so I've been taking it, so I think that part goes away when you get the full affect of it after a month or so (that is assuming you're on something like Lexapro that takes a month to kick in).

Another note: this forum community is great! When you start on April 1, def start a log and meet some fellow Whole30ers who are starting with you :) I am sure there will be others beginning on that date. They can support you and give you advice, food ideas, inspiration, share their woes and listen to yours.

As for the scale... is there a way you can take it to a friend or relatives house for the 30 days? It is so important to focus on how you feel rather than how much you weigh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

On 3/28/2018 at 8:23 PM, PhoenixRising said:

I think a major part of my problem is boredom. I work from home, not very much, and I have a little bit too much spare time on my hands. In the past, when I was bored, I would just eat. I need to figure out ways to occupy my time wisely. Again, something I really need to work on!

 

I totally get the feeling bored when working at home.  Are there are fitness classes you can take?  I work part-time, so I take a beginning yoga class a couple times a week to get myself out of the house when I am not working.  I enjoy the community of people I attend the class with & the teacher is really inspirational.  The people in the class are of all ages, genders & sizes which makes me realize that everyone is built differently and at a different stage in their fitness journeys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all of your responses. Update: I've not been doing well. I somehow managed to gain 10lbs back. I went from 225 to to 235. And I haven't been able to get back on track. Everything in life just seems to be falling apart right now. Let me share a bit of my story, maybe someone can relate, and help me out... or maybe just writing it out will help me to feel better.

I have been overweight since I was a little kid. My family went through some serious trauma and it hit me really hard, and being a child and having absolutely no control over anything, I took control over the one thing I could: Eating. And I ate, and ate, and ate my feelings away. I was tormented by children all through my school years. Even now, at 30 years old, I still get bullied by men and women about my weight. I finally got a breast reduction in my mid 20s, because they were insane. I was 280lbs and my cosmetic surgeon literally told me he had no idea how I had gone through life with breasts that big, and that reducing them to a smaller size would be life changing for me. He wasn't wrong. Even after the reduction, which was massive, I'm still a 42DD/DDD depending on the maker. However, it did enable me to slowly start losing weight, as I could be more active than I was before.

Then, around 26, after dating some of the most miserable men you could have ever come across because of my lack of self esteem, something became very wrong in my life. My anxiety shot through the roof, I couldn't sleep, I was an emotional mess all the time, and I had no idea what was wrong with me. I honestly thought I was going crazy.

After my boyfriend at the time ended up stealing my car, robbing my house, several of our friends houses and some of his, a friend of his finally contacted me while the police were looking for him and told me the truth: He was using meth, and he had been slipping me meth on and off for a little over 2 months. I had no idea. I was completely oblivious to it. I didn't know what meth was. I didn't know what it looked like, what it did to you, how you took it, anything. And by the time I was informed, I was hooked on it.

I spent the next 6 months battling the worst addiction of my life. Why? Because it was making me lose weight. I was losing weight faster and easier than I ever had in my life. I went from 250lbs to 170lbs in a mere matter of months. And I didn't want to stop, because I was FINALLY being told that I looked good. I never once stole. I never once pawned anything. I had a full time job, I paid my bills, and if I didn't have money to buy drugs, I didn't buy drugs. But men in my life encouraged me to keep using, because they told me I was looking great, and that meth was a great way to lose weight and look the way they wanted me to.

How pathetic was I that I bought in to that? How horrible was it that I had so little self esteem that I thought that using drugs was the way to be beautiful?

And what did it end up doing? Ruining my life. I eventually started using so much to try and lose weight that I got severe drug induced psychosis. Talk about a living nightmare. You've never experienced terror like that of your own brain tormenting you when you're awake. Seeing and hearing things that aren't there, being convinced bad things were out to get you... I would never wish that hell upon anyone.

For some reason, I don't know how I did it, but I finally told my family and friends what was happening and quit all on my own. I severed ties with anyone and everyone I knew who did drugs of any kind or drank or lived a lifestyle I wanted no part of. I quit my job to spend time with my family as I got sober. And by some miracle, without having to go to rehab at all, I stopped completely. I haven't touched the drug since. Over the last few years I gave up drinking as well, and as of today I am 5 months and 20 days 100% completely sober.

My point is that I almost gave up my life in a desperate attempt to be accepted by others. I was poisoning my body just so people would like me. Because we live in a world that has made us believe that you have to look a certain way to be loved. And unfortunately, part of me still believes that.

I finally found a doctor who heard my whole story and felt compassion for me. Both of us sat in his office with a nurse and all cried together as I told my story, much of which I have left out here. But he had faith in me, and knew that I needed help. He put me on several different medications for anxiety, most of them completely natural, and only 1 controlled substance that he knew I needed. The stimulant psychosis left some residual effects on me; while the psychosis in itself is completely gone, it left me with an innate fear of other people, a fear of being alone, and crippling panic and anxiety attacks. My doctor gave me the help I needed to overcome this anxiety and helped me get into a wonderful counseling program where I visit with a counselor once a week and have regular visits with a psychiatrist to manage my medication needs.

But, of course, in stopping my drug use, I packed all the weight I had lost back on. 170lbs (by the way, it was not a healthly look; I had more than one person ask me if I had cancer during that time; I thought i looked beautiful, but through everyone elses eyes I looked sickly) back up to 250lbs within a year.

I can't get this weight off. Every time I try to follow a program or eating plan I make it a week or two and then my emotions get the better of me and I give up or give in. I don't go to the gym because I still suffer from some agoraphobia and dont want to take the controlled anxiety meds every day; the risk of addiction to that is something I don't want to even go near. I have no friends; when I cut ties, I cut ties with EVERYONE. You'd be amazed at the amount of people I know in my life who don't drink or do drugs; it's virtually zero. I don't feel like I fit in or belong anywhere, I pretty much hate and distrust all men, and I'm just alone all the time.

I was doing so good on this plan. 10 days in, down to 225lbs, and now I'm inching up back to 250. No matter what I do or eat I'm hungry all the time. I just had my thyroid checked and while its on the low end, the doctor didn't seemed concerned about it. I think my hormones are messed up from all the stress I've been in over the years, but I don't know how to pursue further action or help.

What amazes me the most is that I was able to give up meth, drugs, and alcohol with virtually no problem... but why can't I give up food? Why can't I just eat and be healthy? I feel like I'm trapped in a body that isn't mine and I get so discouraged all I do is lay in bed all day. My anxiety is too bad to try and have a job outside my home right now, and I hardly make enough money working from home as it is.

I am completely and utterly discouraged. I don't know what to do. I don't know where to turn for help. I know it takes time and patience and hard work and perseverance but if I can't even stick to an eating plan or exercise... what am I going to do? I can't go on living like this. I hate everything about myself and most days I just wish I would die. What kind of life is that? How can I get past these feelings and move forward to a life that is worth living?

Maybe this was way too much information to share, but I need all the help and support I can get. I'm not a bad person, I'm just incredibly lost and alone. I made some terrible choices all because I live in a world that has made me believe the only value that matters is looks. And I hate that. I hate this world.

This picture below is me at 170lbs on meth.                                 The middle picture is me at 185lbs off meth. 

10986662_1472612536385205_3579547531284658304_n.jpg.199db3a1ac346eef9bfb0301253b1a76.jpg14938272_1673620236284433_9168741295054000070_n.jpg.b0f066867848d12087fe19568ec661e8.jpg

 

And this picture is me at 230lbs completely sober.

 

IMAG0613.thumb.jpg.a777a4b7ce59f5199fa6d32f29264d59.jpg

 

People tell me I'm beautiful all the time, and I just can't see it. I don't know if its from a lifetime of being told I was ugly and fat, but I just have no sense of self worth. If I can't see the beauty in myself, who else can? Why can't I find value in myself? How do I get to a point where I can be happy and healthy? I don't want to be some skinny model... I just want to be comfortable in my own skin. I just want to have a life. I need help.

 

~Phoenix

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You deserve nothing but love.  The kind that radiates from everywhere and covers you in a warm glow of safety and security!

I'm SO sorry of what you have gone through! Your bravery in sharing this is phenomenal and I hope you are very proud of your courage for overcoming your addiction!  Food is a tough one because we can't just turn it off and escape it like we can with drugs and alcohol.

Does your counsellor potentially deal with disordered eating?  Or know of someone you can talk to that does? I know MORE counselling and appointments is probably not the advice you were looking for but I know for myself, my counsellor has been invaluable to helping me find value in myself and it floods into other aspects of my life that I'm not necessarily going there for.  He's trained by Brene Brown and if you can find someone in your area that has that same base of knowledge maybe that will help you... it's less about the 'thing' that happened and more about finding self worth, value, love and belonging of yourself and knowing you're worth... just a thought that might help you in this situation because the underlying truth that seems to come out of what you're saying is that you need to find those things again.

As far as what you're currently eating right now, I would say maybe a strict Whole30 isn't your best option right now.  How about you take the basis of the Whole30 which is to eat real wholesome food 3 x a day and just do that?  No fast food, no junk but no other rules... fill your plate with real food and eat until you're not hungry anymore.  Do that again twice more during the day.  Sometimes when we have too much going on, the rules are just one more thing that we have to manage and it's too hard to add something else so we rebel against them by doing the exact opposite.  

You are beautiful.  It's clear from the way you write and the twinkle in your eyes that you are beautiful on the inside, not just the outside and I sincerely hope you find that beauty for yourself as well because I think when you do it will light up your world!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SugarCubeOD.... Oh my goodness, that totally made my day, thank you so much. I happen to love Brene Brown, and no, I haven't worked with someone strictly about my eating habits, and that is a really good idea, and I'm going to look in to it. Food has been one of the biggest (excuse the pun) problems in my life, and it's definitely something I need some serious help with. I will take everything you said to heart, and see what I can do to get the most out of what I'm trying to accomplish right now. I do work with an energy healer on a regular basis (kinesiology, muscle testing, the Body/Emotion Code and the Healer's Blueprint saved my life) and she has been really helpful in figuring out what my body needs and what I need to stay away from. My biggest problem is the emotional eating. It's totally out of control and food has become my new addiction. I really do need to find someone who can help guide me through this part of my life. I will keep in mind what you said... I will focus on eating real, healthy foods, I wont order out of go get fast food, and I wont buy junk or processed foods when I go grocery shopping. If I could just make it 30 days, I think I could flip that switch that craves sugar all the time. I never would have believed that trying to quit sugar would be harder than quitting meth, but it is, and that's a scary thought. Thank you so much for your kind and supportive words. I really needed to hear them today <3 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, PhoenixRising said:

SugarCubeOD.... Oh my goodness, that totally made my day, thank you so much. I happen to love Brene Brown, and no, I haven't worked with someone strictly about my eating habits, and that is a really good idea, and I'm going to look in to it. Food has been one of the biggest (excuse the pun) problems in my life, and it's definitely something I need some serious help with. I will take everything you said to heart, and see what I can do to get the most out of what I'm trying to accomplish right now. I do work with an energy healer on a regular basis (kinesiology, muscle testing, the Body/Emotion Code and the Healer's Blueprint saved my life) and she has been really helpful in figuring out what my body needs and what I need to stay away from. My biggest problem is the emotional eating. It's totally out of control and food has become my new addiction. I really do need to find someone who can help guide me through this part of my life. I will keep in mind what you said... I will focus on eating real, healthy foods, I wont order out of go get fast food, and I wont buy junk or processed foods when I go grocery shopping. If I could just make it 30 days, I think I could flip that switch that craves sugar all the time. I never would have believed that trying to quit sugar would be harder than quitting meth, but it is, and that's a scary thought. Thank you so much for your kind and supportive words. I really needed to hear them today <3 

Sugar is a horribly insidious beast and more so when you're recovering from addiction if you ask me... you've got those pathways in your brain from drugs that can also be lit up by sugar... when you're craving sugar, eat fat.  Make friends with olives, or half an avocado with a bunch of salt and hot sauce... at least then once you've eaten that you will know for sure you're not actually hungry and it can be easier to overcome cravings without the 'out' that maaaaaybe I'm hungry.

Keep going, keep asking for help, keep trying new things girl, you got this! :wub:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now