First Things First

I have to feel my body in order to feel that spot. I have to connect the line of communication and clear away the static. As we all have heard, good communication comes from honesty and trust. We have to be on the same team with our bodies.

During my first semester in college (12.5 years ago), I didn’t know anything about the cause and effect relationship with my body. I was missing friends from home, had a pregnant roommate and generally didn’t know what to make of this new life I was supposed to be building. Eating filled some void it seemed and I built up a lot of static. (50 lbs worth in the first semester and another 20 over the next three years of dieting). I didn’t realize that although it tasted pretty good for the 35 seconds in my mouth, that cafeteria burrito or soft-serve ice cream and non-fat double grande mocha, left lasting negative effects on my H. They didn’t solve my problems. Honestly though.. how could I know? The only message I could hear was actually from my jeans… saying “damn girl… can we get a little breathing room here?” And lets be clear that my jeans had I have Never been on the same team, so if couldn’t hear anything from my body why would I listen to those guys?

Weight watchers, the Zone, Non-fat, Atkins, Metabolife, Fat Flush…I tried all of these to lose weight. But since I was only half-ass listening to a few pairs of jeans, I wasn’t motivated. It was an outside source.

The Diets

Now Weight Watchers may have changed over the years, but there were a few reasons it didn’t work for me.
1. It was based on meetings. So I felt like if I couldn’t attend a meeting I wasn’t going to be held responsible. They say groups hold you to your word… unless you can avoid the groups.
2. It didn’t teach me the right things. As long as I kept my points within the target range I was ok. So although I could eat all the veggies I wanted, I opted to eat less, but higher point value food. Also cafeterias didn’t exactly post point values.
So I ate crap on Weight Watchers. It worked for a few lbs at first but then I learned the game and blamed the program for my failings. Drop out.

The Zone was decent. The concept of keeping carbs, protein and fat in balance worked wonders for a family friend so I thought I’d try it. Really great theory if you can prepare your own foods. But I didn’t have time to read the book front to back and again the school cafĂ© didn’t show nutrition facts.

Atkins and Non-fat were uncomfortable. If I remove anything from my diet in total I will end up craving it. Then I’d fulfill the craving with binging and we would be right back to square one. Also Atkins died of cardiac arrest. Maybe coincidence, maybe not.

After graduation came Metabolife. I was married at the time to an Army officer. He thought since he worked out every day he could eat whatever he wanted. And guess who was the good wife who made it for him and therefore ate it herself….? Ephedrine was all the rage on posts across the country. No need to learn to eat just pop a pill to up your results. I took it about two weeks. I was often sick to my stomach, my heart raced and I was wide awake all night. I couldn’t handle it. Within a year, pro athletes and army cadets were dropping dead of heart attacks during workouts. All were using Ephedrine.

Last diet I was ever on… Drum roll…. The Fat Flush Diet. This is by far the closest to how I eat now. It taught me which foods make my body work better and which inhibit the processes. Ultimately it required too many specialty supplements, but it is an excellent resource and I still use recipes and concepts from its pages.

All fell short. They would piss me off and I would run to that non-fat Mocha to make it better. More Static.

An Epiphany

I was 24 and had fairly recently given up on the Fat Flush. I heard somewhere that women are more susceptible to bone loss and we should get our calcium from food and dairy products. It does more good and more is absorbed than if you get it from a supplement. So I started drinking a glass of milk before bed every night. Oh my gosh! I got some serious signals. I was bloated and I couldn’t lay down, every angle made my stomach hurt and spending time in the bathroom didn’t make it any better. Turns out I was not digesting dairy. I was lactose intolerant.

As I looked back then on years of drinking milk and dairy products, I had these similar symptoms. After a bowl of cereal in the morning it was a long ride to high school. Cheese pizza (for lots of reasons) made me lethargic and bloated. I just figured it was standard.

NEWS FLASH: Our bodies are designed to take what they need and fight the rest. No ache or pain is standard.

I was overloading my system with cheese, milk, ice cream, cream of mushroom soup, yogurt. I thought it was dairy so it was good for me. Its true though… we have all heard it… too much of a good thing, can be harmful. It was creating static and I couldn’t hear what my body was telling me.

So I started cutting down, no ice cream, only soy milk. Cheese was only on pizza, which I loved so much, but since I was cutting down on the static, I heard my body every time I had it. Sonja, for real, enough with this. And generally I would tell it to go to hell, its yummy.

But now that I could hear my body… It opened up a whole new world. I began listening harder for what it would tell me after I ate other things. Bread, Candy, Soda, Beer; all those things.

Once I heard the communication regarding food I began to hear other things it was telling me. I felt things in my gut, that sternum gut, my heart center. My emotions and desires became clearer and my unH was obvious. I’ll spare us the details today, but I was shortly thereafter divorced. The static began to clear away more quickly. In the short term people used to ask me how I lost all that weight and my answer, fair or not, was “I got divorced.” There was truth in it, of course, but really now I know it was the communication of my team. Recognizing what was good for us and what wasn’t.

Amazingly I didn’t turn to Oreos anymore to help get through the rough days of a divorce. I heard the way they made me really feel and found more peaceful outlets.

Open the line of communication with your body. Start listening and paying attention to how it feels when you eat something. Any thing. After a good solid meal of fresh veggies and lean meat, it will talk to you then too. And the tenor will be different.

I made choices as to what I prefer: the feelings and the sounds my body was bouncing back to me. I prefer a full and clean feeling. I am satisfied without feeling bigger. The sounds aren’t hollow and deprived; they are rich, full tones of health.