Five Years Plus

{February 7, 2010}   The Eating Roller Coaster

Are you familiar with the eating roller coaster? For me it’s when occasional feasting turns into a regular occurrence. One day I step on the scales or see a picture of myself and realize I’m out of control. Sometimes it’s easier than others to rein my eating back in and lose a few pounds before the whole cycle starts over again.

The truth is that even though I’ve never been fat, I’ve struggled with eating issues much of my life. I have always loved food, especially sweet stuff. Throughout childhood my health conscious mother controlled my eating while three older siblings teased me mercilessly about being “fat”.

Naturally when I moved away from home and lived in the college dorms I gained weight. By second year my tennis coach threatened me: “Unless you get your body fat down to x% by the end of Christmas vacation you’ll be running laps”. That spring I faced the humiliation of being singled out as “overweight” and consequently suffered a loss of confidence that dramatically affected my match performance.

I quit the team and with the tennis coach off my back, a few pounds immediately dropped away. After a summer tree-planting I was lean and fit. For the next 16 years I was free from the tyranny of the roller coaster. During 11 years of outdoor adventuring living in New Zealand followed by 5 years of inner adventuring in India, I ate pretty much what I liked. I was mostly vegetarian and thought my diet was healthy.

In 1999 I moved to America to be with my sweetheart. He wined and dined me and before I knew it I’d gained 20 pounds. After I broke my ankle and packed on another 10, I hardly recognized my body. I was definitely back on the coaster. It took me 3 years to lose this weight, with Ann Louise Gittleman’s Fat Flush Plan offering me a new way of eating and thinking about nutrition.

Losing this weight actually led to my discovery of a breast lump and in 2005 I started my cancer journey. Facing a life-threatening illness was tremendously motivating and I became very diligent about healthy eating. However, over time my commitment waned and in the last couple of years I climbed 15 pounds.

“Enough!” I say. It is my intention to get off the eating roller coaster – permanently.  Stay tuned to future blogs to read about my method and progress.

I actually love roller coasters!



Laura says:

Thank you for sharing yourself and your valuable perspectives and insights. I can relate to many of your struggles.
I look forward to reading more.

Ann Hedley says:

Being one of your “older siblings” I guess it is appropriate that I am shown on the “roller coaster” with you. Now I feel guilty for having teased my little sister mercilessly . . .

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