Weight Therapy #5: Hunger is(n’t always) the Enemy

Speaking plainly, learning to be unafraid of hunger really helps.

Image courtesy of Beermug via stock.xchng

I don’t know about you, but there is something about hunger that almost always surprises me.

Not when I’m actually “looking” straight at it, but when I’m going along, throughout my normal day, and suddenly get blindsided but a near-panicky awareness that my body’s expecting nourishment. NOW.

And it’s interesting to me how nearly every weight-loss program/advertizement/book crows that “You don’t have to be hungry!”

I don’t believe it.

I do believe you don’t have to be in agony, that you don’t have to be continually and indefinitely raw in your body and mind as you hold off from eating what your body needs for survival.

Hunger is good because it tells your rational self that your body is using all the fuel that you’ve provided it. Hunger is a fair gauge of balancing food in vs. energy out.

But the idea– the desperation– that one shouldn’t *feel* hunger at all is misplaced.

Hunger is like pain; indeed, is a type of pain.

And pain is a way of sending a message. It is communication that needs to be interpreted to maximize its value, but that doesn’t mean it’s a waste of time.

I don’t have “real” blood sugar issues just like I don’t have “real” (testable/provable) gluten/Celiac issues– what I know is that I have my own type of fragile-ness that I ignore at my peril.

I’ve started reading Roz Morris’s Nail Your Novel, and good as it is, my favorite line so far is the assertion

Details are for later.

For me this is validation/permision/relief to not tackle every snippet as it arises, but also the reminder that that later needs a landing place.

My best technique so far is to “batch process” my details.

Making a month-long menu (that’s my old technique), for example, allows me a space to focus and cut back on the number of details I need to pin on any given day.

Image courtesy of Christina Ericsson via stock.xchng

The difference now, is that I need to plan enough to have portable food and not be surprised by a need that is not. new. I have to (and I’m still fine-tuning this) work out portable foods (for example), so that I am ready for the inevitable.

If I can start by remembering, planning that I will need more food (that is, get hungry), then it won’t surprise me. And that is enough to remove most of the anxiety.

I tell myself, This is the feeling of my body reaching into its reserves, and my impulse to eat defensively– to eat “ahead” to avoid being hungry later– diminishes proportionately.

2 thoughts on “Weight Therapy #5: Hunger is(n’t always) the Enemy

  1. Pingback: Weight Therapy #7: Engage Your Imagination | Untangling Tales

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