Smutty Fitness: Controlling the cravings
Back in May you wrote a Smutty Fitness article called 10 lbs in 2 Months. There was a line in that article that has stuck with me and has been rattling around in my head ever since, so I'm writing to you to find out more. You said "Health is about being able to have a piece of chocolate cake at a party and enjoy it without feeling guilty or the urge to have 10 pieces of it." What I need to know is... how can I get to this place?
A bit of background on me... I've been very overweight all my life and since the beginning of this year I have lost a significant amount of weight, but I still have a lot to go. Up until now I've been successful by willpower-ing my way through, but it is getting so much harder to stick with my plan. I still have the urge to eat all kinds of sweets and treats and on the few occasions when I have indulged, it has been in pretty large amounts. What can I do to make these urges go away? I understand that everyone has cravings, but I'd really like to be able to crave one piece of cake and stop at that, instead of having the overwhelming desire to eat the entire cake.
Have you ever heard people say “I will be happy when….”? I have, and frankly I hear it all the time: I will be happy when I have more money, I will be happy when I get to go on vacation, I will be happy when I find a boyfriend or I will be happy when I am skinny. More often than not our cravings come as a way for us to distract ourselves from how we are currently feeling and giving into the cravings provides us with instant gratification and an instant escape from the world we are living in. I am guilty of that myself. I live alone, I work long hours and I give to people all day. Sometimes when I arrive home from work and realize that I am alone, with no one to give to me, I turn to food to distract myself from having to deal with those feelings. Over the last couple of years I have had to learn to accept how I feel and love the girl that I am.
As women we are rarely satisfied with ourselves, continually striving to be prettier, skinnier, look taller, have fewer wrinkles and pretend that while we are falling apart on the inside everything in our lives is perfect. Heaven forbid we are 10 or more pounds overweight, right?
It is normal to crave sugar, we all do, but where these cravings become a problem is when we cannot control them and one piece of cake turns into an entire cake. When this starts happening, or when we feel “guilty” every time we indulge, we need to look beyond the cravings for food and try and understand why we are feeling this way.
You need to start being happy with who you are today and being proud of everything you have accomplished so far. You need to believe that you deserve to be the person you want to be and become her. You need to reward yourself for your successes each day, not through food, but by telling yourself that you are worthy and that you can do it and you deserve to be happy. We are not defined by how we look.
You are not alone in how you feel and I commend you for being honest with me and with yourself. Trust me when I say there are many other women who feel how you do and do what you do but until you learn how to be happy right now and accept and love the person you are today this battle you fight with cravings will never end.
Attached - Al Roker on a bike ride.