One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident


Which Came First, the Fat or the Crap?

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I’m a fairly rational person. I know I can’t gain 5lbs of fat overnight. I know some chocolate and a few Oreo cookies isn’t the end of the world, but I’m noticing an interesting pattern. Actually it’s more of a loop.

I feel fat so I eat crap, and when I eat crap, I feel fat.

There are times nothing tempts me. I feel great. Motivated. Skinny, even. The Husband could be eating a bag of Dorritos next to a pile of cupcakes, fresh Christmas cookies from the oven, and a warm Cinnabon all while asking me if I want to order a double stuff crust pizza and I could. care. less. My answer is no. Easily.

Then there are days I feel off. Fat. In a funk. I walk into a room and the kids will enjoying a couple of Oreo cookies and I can’t walk away. The thought of having a cookie consumes me. I torment myself, bargaining and rationalizing. I grab 1 that turns into 2 then I pour a glass of milk and have 2 more, ok 3. Then, since I already “ruined” the day, I nibble on cheese when making the kids lunches and sit down with a bag of chips while watching TV.

It’s sad, but I still struggle between these two states. I just can’t figure out which comes first, the feeling “fat” (which really is my catch all for depressed, sad, stressed, overwhelmed, scared, lonely, etc.) or the eating of crap.

It’s my personal chicken egg problem.

Which Came First, the Fat or the Crap?

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There are 23 comments so far.

    Denise Williams

    December 17, 2012

    I totally ditto this post!


    December 17, 2012

    Yep. It can be a cycle. But I do think, with me at least, that hormones, something inside me, drives me more at times than others. Not an excuse. Just an observance.


    December 18, 2012

    If you figure it out please let us know. Though it has been a very many years and no one seems to have figured out the chicken and egg either. ;-)


    December 18, 2012

    Wow! .You took the thoughts right out of my head. Thanks for the post, it makes me feel a little normal.


    December 18, 2012

    So so helpful and true! Thanks for another great post! I find that the sugar starts me on the road to bad feeling…..every time! I guess it is not my friend after all?!


    December 18, 2012

    Glad I’m not the only one!! This is exactly what goes through my head too!! So we know emotions are the trigger; now, if only we could find a way to stop the cycle…a back door once it’s started.

    Christina savage

    December 18, 2012

    Right there with you – I was reading back post on my blog from 2010 when I was my smallest since Im struggling right now… and the post then were exactly like the post now. A few great days then feel horrible and fat …. over and over and over.


    December 18, 2012

    I feel the same way!

    Catherine c.

    December 18, 2012

    My sentiments exactly.when i ‘go bad’ i go all the way. Moderation is something i struggle with. 2 sons home from college and the house is full of stuff i dont usually keep around. Then they go out every evening with friends and im left with all the ‘crap’ to keep me company….boredom, depression, worry, etc. everyday i just try to be a better me and put the struggles of yesterday behind me.


    December 18, 2012

    Ditta here! Still looking for the answer


    December 18, 2012

    When I’m in that funk, I say I have a bad case of the “Fat, Dumb, and Uglies”. When my kids left the nest I thought I would get skinny skinny skinny because, since I would be buying food only for me, no more junk would have to enter the house. And it doesn’t, but I’ve found I can do just as much mindless munching damage with a box of dry cereal or lowfat Triscuits. I’m hoping maybe that helps by at least letting you know it isn’t the Oreos that are giving you that powerless feeling – so don’t blame them, or the Doritos. Just rejoice that you actually have some days that you couldn’t care less about them, and keep on fighting through the days when they win. You may lose a few battles, but you’re still winning the war Ronni!


    December 18, 2012

    I completely understand what you are getting at and for me, its waking up not feeling as skinny as I would like, whether I really am or not doesn’t seem to matter, just how I perceive myself. Then because I don’t feel just as I feel I should, I eat. And for me it doens’t end when I go to bed that night, it ends a few days later once I am finally busy enough that I don’t have time to either eat or worry about how I look.


    December 18, 2012

    You took the words right out of my mind and mouth! This is the cycle I’ve been in for about a month now. For me, it has also included my almost 3-week ‘break’ from regular exercise which really compounds the problem. It then turns into ‘Don’t exercise. Feel fat. Eat crap.’ Repeat. I’m trying to slowly get out of it BEFORE next week so that I don’t have that overwhelming feeling of ‘It’s Christmas. I feel fat. I’ll eat crap and start over on 1 Jan’.


    December 18, 2012

    Roni: I am living this cycle with you and have been for YEARS. I don’t have an answer but I appreciate you putting it out there for once giving me the feeling of “I’m not alone.” You are amazing and doing an awesome job. Keep it up and thanks for being there for people like me.


    December 18, 2012

    Totally agree! And you’d think if I felt fat, I’d want to eat well to counteract it! But “fat” is not a feeling. So I think when I “feel fat”, I feel self-conscious or discouraged… And then I eat like crap because I think it’ll cheer me up… anyway, I am there with you 100%.


    December 18, 2012

    Hi Roni! First of all, I loooove your blog mainly because so many times I read your posts and think YES! My husband joined AA in August to combat his drug and alcohol addiction and around the same time I found Al-Anon. While our family has been involved in this program, I’ve come to realize that I too have an addiction…to sugar. It’s truly a 100% gotta have it, will do anything for it, irrational need for sugar. And I will be constantly struggling all of my life. Once I admitted this to myself, that I am powerless over sugar (aka step one), the pressure lifted. I am powerless over my sugar addiction. However, one day at a time I can work on it. Within just one day – or even one hour – I challenge myself to overcome my addiction to sugar. I face it. I stare brownie in their delicious little faces and say, “nope. Not today.” And sometimes, like last night, I have gingerbread house making “incidents” where I scarf snowman peeps like they are my life blood. Anyway, sorry for the long response, but this is the perspective that I’ve been holding since August and so far it seems to help me be gentler on myself.

      Sally Greenfield

      December 19, 2012

      I think that you just proved you aren’t powerless at all. :)

    Cindy M.

    December 18, 2012

    I echo this sentiment!

    Life isn’t perfect, especially when you throw emotions in there. My weight loss journey has been ongoing for YEARS. But I’ve only made real progress since this April (down 48 lbs so far!!). I had to break this cycle to make progress…it really was this very insight that allowed me to see progress.

    If I find myself feeling *fat* or *down*, I pay myself (yes, with money). I tell myself instead of having cookies/cake/pizza, I’m going to get a manicure, or a pedicure, or buy a new sweater – and I put the money on the kitchen counter, near the fridge or pantry, with a note to myself to book the appointment, or stop at the store after work. When I walk in the kitchen and see that – I become conscious of the choice I made – and I’ve noticed that a facial, a pedicure, a new pair of pants ALWAYS looks better than the snack that I thought I wanted.

    It sounds ridiculous…but it lets me *feel good* and look forward to something that I am doing for ME to feel better. And I don’t regret it – ever! Unlike pizza/cake/cookies. It works for me.


    December 18, 2012

    i have been on this NO SNACKING! plan for the past 4 months. it seems harsh, and the first week of doing it was SO HARD!! it’s a bizarre thing and i’m not sure how long it will last but when my kids or husband gets to snacking, i don’t even get/feel the urge to go there because i know its not happening.

    i allow myself a free meal once a week to do whatever i want, and one free day a week to eat whatever i want. the first few free meals and days were off the charts i will admit…i ate everything i could to get my fill. but what i found after a series of weeks of this, is that i made much more healthy choices on those days because i had the mindset that i can do bad stuff once a week as opposed to “i shouldn’t be doing this!! i’ve already caved i may as well make it worth it. i also look at those days as compromises…”i’m going out for dinner, so i’m going to make sure i drink 3L of water and get a good exercise in”. now when i see them eating something i want, i say “i’ll “TREAT MYSELF” on friday with my free meal”, most times i don’t even think about it come friday.

    i do have a TRUE LOVE for tastycakes…the peanut butter kandy kake. for as long as i can remember…i eat one every free meal as my dessert and one on my day off…i find i appreciate my treats so much more than i ever did. i’ve been eating every 2-4 hours a day which basically translates to eating at 8/12/3/6/9. eating carb/protein/fat each time really keeps my cravings for crap down to a tolerable, “i can wait til my free meal/day to treat myself”. i know it sounds crazy but amazingly it’s worked and i’m down 20+ lbs and feel the best i’ve felt in years.

    Jody R. Goldenfield

    December 18, 2012

    Emotions fuel my eating… I may feel “fat” & when I was heavier, yes.. but it was when I was overwhelmed or depressed or sad or angry that I really went off the band wagon. I think it is a catch 22 so many times. I have learned after years of practice to control this & basically by telling my self that person or that situation is not worth me ruining all my hard work – this among other strategies.. we all have to find what works for us… HUGS!

    Blogging Runner

    December 18, 2012

    When I feel like fat, it’s like a free pass to eat crap. I’m getting a lot bettert though, it only took 28 years!

    Laura Jane

    December 20, 2012

    I have no idea which comes first, but it is a ridiculous, terrible cycle! I feel lousy and fat, so I eat junky food to console myself (and also because: What’s the use? I’m already fat anyway.). Therefore I only getting fatter and feel even lousier thereby eating more junky food to further console myself! Sometimes I marvel at how it’s even possible that an otherwise rational human being like myself could actually deceive myself so blatantly into thinking that I really “need” the junk food! Breaking that cycle is so very HARD, and the further you get down the path, the harder it is to get out. I’ve been so deep in that cycle for the past few months. It’s quite miserable. I’ve still been reading every word you’ve written, but I haven’t commented in months because I just have nothing positive to say while I’m in this negative cycle. The good news (that I desperately need to take to heart myself) is that the positive, healthy cycle works the same way. It’s also self-perpetuating if you can just get the momentum started. You feel good so you feel like eating well and exercising to keep up the good, fit feeling. Since you fell good and fit, you want to keep exercising and eating healthy.


    December 21, 2012

    I so know what you mean!! I think it’s the crap (not just food) that makes us feel fat and then we eat crap and there’s that circle again!!
    I have to be careful myself right now, been stressed out and working really hard. I feel it right now and have a hard time keeping away from the cookies…..