Confessions of an Over-Eater..part one

As I mentioned in my last post I have been doing a lot of thinking recently about my eating habits, in relation to my weight, my health and my 1/2 marathon training. Food thinking gives me a little bit of anxiety because its a variable that I should be able to control (more then say the weather or if, heaven forbid, I get injured *gasp*) Yet, despite everything that I know after years of research and trial and error, and all of the best laid plans I still feel like I am dropping the ol' proverbial ball. And it's making me a little C-R-A-Z-Y!!

Here's the thing. I know, for the most part, what food I should eat and what food I shouldn't. Spinach salad with grilled chicken? Yes. Half a dozen donuts? No. Veggie and tofu stir fry? Uh, huh! Entire bad of Spicy Doritos? Oh hell no! Put the darn bag down right now!!! So really, I don't believe its an issue of misinformation or a lack of knowledge. Really and truly, its that I, Samantha, Miss Going to Run 21 K in September, Miss Lost 35 lbs and Wants to Keep it that Way, am a compulsive over-eater. *Sigh of relief* There I said it. It feels good to get that off my chest

My biggest issue both pre-weight loss and now is that I eat (and eat and eat and eat)  because I can. Because I like to. Because the food is there. Because I am stressed. Because its dinner time and I should eat something. Because, because, because...

I, by definition, am living proof that Hotess-Frito Lay got it right. "Betch ya can't eat just one?" You are darn right I can't! I find myself at the bottom of a bag of pretzels/Goldfish crackers (a new weakness)/tortilla chips all too often and when I look back I didn't even start the bag hungry! I just ate 'em (all of 'em!) because they were there and because I didn't know when to stop.

You know, maybe thats not even true either. I probably did know when to stop. Like before even opening the bag perhaps? Or a handful in, when I realized I wasn't hungry but just bored or stressed? But I didn't because I stopped listening to the "cues" (eat when hungry, stop when satisfied) a long time ago. Instead I just eat because I don't want to stop. Its a compulsion of sorts. Eat, eat, EAT! Ahhhh!!

If any of you have dealt with this I am sure you know how difficult it is. I'm embarassed to keep eating when even my boyfriend (who has a huge appetite!) has stopped. I'm embarrassed to crinkle yet another empty bag of chips and discreetly try to throw it away, hoping no one will ask if we still have any. I'm embarrassed because I feel like I should have more control and I just don't

And the thing is I so want to be healthy and happy. I also want to lose another 10-15 lbs. And I know that this little habit (its so much more then a habit but let's run with that for now..) is standing in the way of these things. I need to get it under control. And I plan to start by asking myself a few questions: Why and when to I overeat? (stress, sadness, boredom...I list these because I believe it is tied to emotion in some way) What are my trigger foods? What can I do to better avoid these situations? (and or the foods that trigger them) I know I have the power to stop these binges. I know that I can take back the control. Everything I have accomplished is way too important to me to sacrifice to this problem. I won't let that happen!

Stay tuned for Confessions Part Two where I take a closer look at the answers to those questions and how I can overcome over-eating (binging) once and for all.

So tell me, whats the number one thing standing (or that used to stand)in the way of your goals and how are you dealing with it (or how did you)?


  1. I love, love this post. I am an over-eater too, and I can't wait to read the second part!

  2. Standing in my way right now, TIME. I work full time and part time and occasional weekends. I can't do it all right now. Full time work ends June 30th (whoot).

    I find identifying my triggers to be the best. I don't buy or keep certain foods in the house because I know they are there and will make any excuse to eat them.

    I am a yoyo late night snacker. It's a tough area fo me and when I start late night snacking it turns into a binge (get as much as you can while you can), and then in a week or two I see those latenight snacks turn into weight on the scale.

    I trie and avoid this by keeping busy, working out after dinner, making food for the next day, cleaning to avoid sitting, watching TV too long and feeling like I need to snack though I'm not hungry.

  3. hey! great blog. thnx for leaving a comment on mine. i will look at that book that you suggested. Its probably ridiculous, but i like to see what the author says.

    so ur from toronto, eh? thats awesome. not too many Torontonian bloggers out there!

  4. What a wonderfully honest post! I think of food as fuel - which encourages me to fill by body with nutritous foods rather than 'just' calories :) Looking forward to part 2

  5. Wonderful post... Very informational and educational as usual!

    Acai Optimum

  6. I think it's great that you are talking about this on your blog. I am also an over-eater, and I know it's a combination of stress and boredom for me. I just have to stay really focused on my goal of being healthy, and try to keep things in control, but it's definitely not easy.

  7. Hey Samantha, I just stumbled upon your blog. This is a really nice post. I'm having issues with this right now too. It's really weird, I go through eating cycles. Usually when I have enough to do (even with some stress), I'm fine. I'm good at making schedules for myself and getting by without overeating (this was me March-May 2010), but when something changes I get all thrown off (June-Now). I have an internship where I work from home and it really is starting to make me overeat like crazy! I try to get myself out of the house but the boredom/stress/frustration of sitting in front of the computer all day just gets to me and I end up eating a ton.

    I completely agree. I know what I need to eat to be healthy but everything else just keeps creeping in! I think they're absolutely tied to emotions. I'm not sure how to make it stop and I don't really have any words of advice but it's nice to know we're not alone.