Healthy and Sane

Taking responsibility for my actions

July 30th, 2009 · 24 Comments · breakfast, eggs, favorite recipes, snacks, yogurt

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately and trying to think about why I keep bingeing. I’m honestly sick of talking and thinking about it, and I hate that I feel like a victim to this “bingeing demon.” I’ve decided that I’m no longer going to give in. I’m taking responsibility for my actions and changing them for the better. On that note, I think I figured out why going from calorie counting to intuitive eating probably triggered this crazy bingeing. I almost feel like with this new self-discovery and my new “plan” I can get this resolved… for good! Feel free to skip over this part and scroll over to the food pics if this is not relevant to you… I won’t judge :)

So here we go… When I was in a hardcore losing weight mode last year, I counted calories religiously for 6 days, then went 100% nuts on day 7. I worked out during those 6 days and had the seventh day as my “rest day” – from everything!ย  I ate all day long, whatever I wanted, and of course gained some weight due to this one “cheat day” but overall I lost more during the week so the number on the scale was going down and my workouts helped shape my body.ย  I thought that this approach was a good one – for me. I accepted the fact that I was an all-or-nothing person and thought that I figured out a way to make things work with this handicap.ย  Unfortunately, it looks like the second I stop counting calories, my brain thinks it’s “day 7” so all bets are off – and my binge eating is triggered again. This is not healthy and I’m stopping this madness. I’m serious this time! ๐Ÿ‘ฟ <– scary smiley face=I’m serious ๐Ÿ˜‰

Oh, about my plan. I’ve been emailing back and forth with Eve, who’s been absolutely wonderful. Eve is an RD in NYC and I wish I still lived there. I think she would have been a huge help to me! Anyways, she said something very basic yet kind of genius. She said that I still needed rules even if I stop counting calories … and she’s right! I work well with rules. That’s how I lost weight before. I just need some slightly softer rules now as I’m trying to resolve my food issues and lose weight slowly. So here is my new rule: I can have 1 treat (any treat) a day, every day, if I want one. If I know I’ll be going out at night, I’ll eat super clean during the day. If I want a large cookie or a special dessert, I can have it too… but just 1, and I have to eat super clean for the rest of the day to provide my body with the nutrients it needs. Simple, right? Today I allowed myself to have a treat, but I didn’t want one! I passed by free office cookies with no problems, and then passed by a cute brownie stand at the farmers market like it was nothing. I wanted cleaner foods so I rolled with it. I think I’m still kind of disgusted by Tuesday’s incident. It won’t last long but it’s ok, because I can have a treat every day if that’s what I really want. ๐Ÿ˜€ I won’t lose weight as fast, but it’s ok. I’ll be sane, and with my workouts I think I will still be able to lose some weight. Thanks again, Eve!!

Onto today’s cleanish eats. I’m so proud! ๐Ÿ˜›

In the bowl: TJ’s organic nonfat european style yogurt, 1 fresh apricot, cantaloupe chunks, fresh blueberries, Kashi Golean cereal, Zoe’s almond cranberry granola (just a tiny handful) + cacao nibs. I feel like I haven’t had a big yogurt bowl like that in forever. This was delicious!!! The cacao nibs were really subtle. I still can’t figure them out – they’re either intense and bitter, or get lost in the mix. I’m going to keep experimenting :)



Mid morning snack: Nature’s Path organic cinnamon apple instant oatmeal + 1T Justin’s cinnamon peanut butter. This was such an amazing snack! It was sweet but hearty. I’m going to buy more packets to keep on hand for dessert. Seriously, I think this may satisfy my sweet tooth on many occasions going forward. Yay for new discoveries :mrgreen:


Lunch was random (another dinner sans leftovers): yellow cauliflower from the farmers market (microwaved for 2 minutes) +Annie’s white cheddar organic mac & cheese. I added the cauliflower to the cooked pasta and then added the cheese powder to make everything nice and cheesy.ย  Actually this was kind of ass kicking ๐Ÿ˜†


Mid afternoon treat: decaf tea + 2 Indigo Rabbit heavenly chocolate pillows



Dinner was also ass kicking! I followed this recipe from Cooking Light for tomato goat cheese strata (found through Tri To Cook). We didn’t have enough eggs so I halved it. So delicious!! Adam said it was like a fancy deconstructed egg and cheese. Okay – whatever works ๐Ÿ˜‰


Multiply this slice by 2. This is only 1/2 serving shown here… I went back for seconds :)

Dessert: 2 turkish dried apricots. These guys are extra sweet!!


If you can’t tell from the tone of this post, I’m in a fantastic mood! I feel a lot more in control and feel like I am finally making true progress. I have a special treat in the oven that I will enjoy tomorrow since it’s 10pm right now. Yay to being rational ๐Ÿ˜†

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24 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Daria (Summer of the CSAs)

    Glad you’re feeling good! Congrats on the new game plan.

  • #2 - Alison

    Good luck on setting the rules. I just listened to a Jillian Michaels podcast and she advocated the same thing. She said some people can do okay with a “free day” but she’s not one of them. She prefers allowing 1 treat every day.

  • #3 - Ellie

    Hi- I’ve been reading for a while and I really feel for you on the whole binging thing… I used to struggle with that a lot. For me, having “1 treat a day” didn’t do it, because I simply wasn’t eating enough during the day. Although you may think you’re eating enough, some people need A LOT more food than others… I need around 3000 calories a day! Also, for me, telling myself I could have 3 snacks a day, WHATEVER I want, was very helpful. For a few weeks, I had 2 desserts every day, but now that the novelty has worn off I’m having sweets a lot less. Just something to think about, because saying that you can have 1 “bad food” a day, and if you do you have to eat “super clean” the rest of the day is still a restrictive mindset and so may not completely resolve your food issues.

  • #4 - Lara (Thinspired)

    I feel really inspired right now to take control. So are you returning to calorie counting or just giving yourself the new rule with the IE?
    Right now I am feeling really stubborn. On one hand, I do not want to be out of control and therefore I am really, really thinking of returning to counting. On the other hand, I have worked so hard for months to quite the counting. I have no idea if I have made progress or done more damage. Maybe the 6/1 thing you did would work well for me. We are so much alike in this regard…what do you think?
    Just read your last post, too, and I think it’s great you went to an RD. I actually went to the Dr the other day in hopes of getting a referral but didn’t have much luck (the system in England is different and kind of weird). Obviously I can go privately but I’m not sure yet.
    Ok, sorry to write a novel. I should just write an email. Let me know what you think when you have time ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • #5 - Eve

    I’m SO glad you had a fantastic day! I think having some guidelines is really important for you. Everyone is different some people do with with IE with no rules, but not everyone. Keep up the hard work. Also realize that not everyday will be as easy as today, and there will be some “stumbling blocks” along the way, but you just need to recognize them and come up with a plan for action, and stop in the middle – 2 treats one day would be better than 10 :)

  • #6 - ttfn300

    ok, time for me too. it’s NOT an option to sit around and eat just because. It sounds like this will work, as you are smiling ear-to-ear with this post :)

    that strata was fantastic, right? yum!! where did you find those chocolate pillows?? i like the oatmeal snack idea, i have packets at work myself! need to bring some nut butter now ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • #7 - Kelly

    I’m glad you’re coming to a point that makes sense for you. I think that’s a key thing, it’s all individual. I think people assume when trying to get healthy that if something is popular or works for someone else doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you. Everyone is different. For example, I know rules don’t work for me. I absolutely REBEL! What does work for me is having a plan. I find that when I actually plan out my meals and exercise for the week, I eat better. It doesn’t mean anything is off limits but when I know I’m planning for a little more indulgent meal on the weekend I am less likely to indulge during the week. I tend to treat my consumption like my bank account.

    I really appreciate your being on honest about this. I used to post on a regular thread on the Self message boards for awhile and a lot of people were going through this. You’re not the only one. I also believe it’s about discovery. Sometimes the only way to figure out what does work is by first determining what doesn’t.

  • #8 - Shelly

    I’m glad you are doing something that’s working well for you! Good luck! :)

  • #9 - K

    Good luck with your new set of rules! I hope this helps and that you feel happier now :) I feel bad that you’re going through this struggle – try to persevere and it will get better!

    Everything you ate looks absolutely delicious!!

  • #10 - Dish Gal

    was the strata good??

  • #11 - Elina

    Ha, Alison – I bet my idea of a “treat” and Jillian’s idea of a treat is very different. Newman’s own organic dark chocolate pb cups just don’t quite do it for me. I actually think that Jillian has food issues just like many of us – she just has a stronger will power, partly strengthened due to her “responsibilities” as a trainer and fitness guru.

    Ellie – thanks for sharing your thoughts. I don’t think I personally need 3000 calories but you make a good point – we are all different. I like the idea of any 3 snacks a day. I’ll start with this 1 treat/day approach and see if that’s enough. I think it may be. If not, I may increase it to 2 for a while. I’m sure, like you say, the novelty will wear off and I’ll be eating less junk on a regular basis.

    Lara – I will not be returning to calorie counting. I think I’m done with it. I can gage portions quite well now (as a result of calorie counting for years) and know well when my meals are well balanced and when they aren’t. I’m going to go with this new rule of 1 treat/day and see how it goes. I’ll keep you posted… of course ๐Ÿ˜€ I’ll send you another email on the 6/1 approach. Quick and dirty answer – I think it’s not sustainable and comes back to bite you (see above).

    Eve – I think that’s such a great approach. And I like that last sentence in your comment – 2 treats are better than 10. I need to remember that next time when inevitably I fall off the wagon and have more than 1 treat. No need to then completely go nuts because “I already blew it”.

    Ttfn300 – should I refer to you as that, or Shannon? I find it funny typing ttfn ๐Ÿ˜‰ Anyways… 1) I’m glad you’re a little inspired by my crazy talk. Sounds like you’re struggling with a little bit of it yourself (probably not bingeing but maybe mindless snacking?) and I know how hard it is. You can stop this!!! I know you can! Call me/text me if you want to ever meet up for a walk or something instead of eating :) 2) The strata was fantastic! Yum-o!!; 3) I bought those chocolate pillows at WF in Symphony. They are pretty yummy but not intensely chocolaty as I was hoping for them to be. I wouldn’t buy them again. 4) Your new single packets shipment of BB may help “spice up” those oatmeal packets ๐Ÿ˜€

    Kelly – you’re right. We’re all so different so there is no cookie cutter approach to this. I think I need to break it down on a day by day basis. Looking forward to a meal over the weekend is just not enough for me when a craving hits. That’s why I think allowing myself a treat/day should be a good approach. But that’s just me :) It’s so crazy how many people have the same “issue”. It’s nice to know I’m not alone but I’d rather have everyone “get cured” instead ๐Ÿ˜€

    Shelly – thanks! :mrgreen:

    K – it WAS a delicious day of eats. I love those kinds of days :)

  • #12 - foodnfit

    Good for you! I hope everything works out–stay strong!

  • #13 - sister inna

    your dinner looks soooo yumm

  • #14 - Molly

    This is a beautiful post! I feel inspired by your ability to take control of your own life and happiness. This has helped me with many of my struggles in life… learning that we have the answer within ourselves, it is just a matter of listening.

    Any interest in a run sometime in the future?

  • #15 - Lauren

    I found myself grinning while reading this post… it’s great that you feel you’re on the right path!

    The strata looks awesome – anything with goat cheese is a winner in my book.

  • #16 - ttfn300

    shannon or ttfn works ๐Ÿ˜‰ and i’ll likely take you up on that offer (so long as it’s not raining…)!

  • #17 - Mandy A

    Elina, I am beaming reading this post! You can tell that you feel 100% confident with this and makes you feel SO much more at ease! I’m so glad for that!!!

    I so agree… 1 treat a day rather than having a full cheat day sounds much more reasonable!! When hubby and I did Body For Life years ago – we took our cheat day too literally… if I told you what we would eat in one day, you might be sick! We were! haha

    I’m so glad to see this… I can’t wait to see the outcome for you :)

    Yay for Eve, btw!! :)

  • #18 - Amanda (modernation)

    Brava for sharing, Elina. I think many of us go through this when we switch up our routine. Good for your for being aware and taking responsibility – it is motivating!

  • #19 - Elina

    Dish Gal – the strada was REALLY good :)

    Mandy A – you are too cute! ๐Ÿ˜€ I actually did the Body for Life workouts in college. Don’t remember the cheat day part. I think every day was a cheat day for me in college. Damn unlimited low quality buffets at the dining hall.

  • #20 - katecooks

    i’ve been buckling down too! it’s hard though, right? your enthusiasm is great and i think you are right on track. i have been eating a snack every night but sticking to smaller treats, with something more decadent, like froyo, once a week. (doesnt sound like a lot, but self serve + unlimited toppings bar = way too much to do more than once a week!). i dont know if its the ‘rules” that are working, or just knowing that i can have those things, just not all the time all at once. anyway sounds like you have your head on straight and i will definitely have to keep reading to see how it goes!!

  • #21 - Elina

    Katecooks – this sounds like a great compromise! Something little every day, more of a real treat once a week. I’m glad you found your balance! And thanks for reading ๐Ÿ˜€

  • #22 - Marilou Lissandrello

    Hello! This is my first time to your blog and I love it. It’s crisp, well organized, and full of great information.

    Commiting to get serious is a HUGE first step. My husband and I commited ourselves to eating healthy versus going on a diet and we’ve never looke back. I must admit, however, that it’s hard work to stay focused each and every day but we’re doing it. Keep the faith and don’t give up.

  • #23 - Sandy

    Hi Elina –

    So glad you found your way to Indigo Rabbit cookies (! Imagine – a whole line of cookie varieties that are delicious, allergy-friendly AND good for you.

    With your focus on healthy living you might also enjoy taking a look at our blog,

    Keep up the good work!

  • #24 - Inspiration from the Internet « A Woman's Intuition

    […] while I was digging through blogs looking to see how people coped with binge eating, I came across this postย in Elina’sย blog. I’ve been readingย Healthy and Saneย for awhile, now (it’s one […]