Monday, September 10, 2012

More Authenticity

The response and feedback from my last blog was so overwhelming! Thank you so much for all your kind words and support! I have to admit that as soon as I clicked the Publish button, I wanted to go hide under a rock. Facing fears can be so scary!

I want to clarify a few things and give you an update on how things are going since last week.

I received some questions about my goals concerning leanness and weight. There was some confusion about the pictures I posted, as some people thought I wanted to maintain the "before" look. Not at all! I posted the pictures merely to show that you can't out-train a bad diet. The "before" look was about 1-2 weeks before my show. I was very, very lean, and quite frankly, I felt like crap! My goal is to maintain somewhere in the middle of the "before" and "after." I feel that would be a healthy, maintainable weight. My clothes would fit, and I'd feel good about how I looked. I hope this clears up some confusion and concern about my weight objective.

In order to get to my goal weight/look, I'm following a contest-like diet for a few weeks. I realize that "moderation" doesn't work for my weight-loss goals at all, so I need to take an all-or-nothing approach. J wrote up a short-term plan for me to follow until I hit my goal weight. The plan is going very well so far; I'm 100% on track. Then again, there was never any question about whether or not I could diet. Obviously, I'm very good at following a plan (see I Won Some Swords!); it's when I don't follow a plan that I have issues.

A few weeks ago, I decided to say good-bye to the scale because I felt like it was ruling my mood. I could be having a wonderful day until I stepped on the scale. And then my entire day would feel ruined.

I decided that wasn't a healthy way to live.

The Day Wrecker
I needed a way to track my progress (besides just how my clothes fit), though, so I unpacked our brand new scale (first time in my life I've ever owned one because I knew I'd obsess if I had one) and stepped on it. I wasn't surprised by the number that appeared; it was about what I'd figured. It didn't ruin my day, but it did give me motivation to stick to my plan.

What Next?
So what next? After I reach my goal weight, then what? I still haven't solved the original problems of making healthy food choices and not continuing to eat even after I'm full. I've been doing some research about food addictions and the body's response to certain foods. It's fascinating information - and all very recent! I've discovered that some foods can trigger reactions similar to an addict's response to substances. For example, eating sugar can cause the release of dopamine - that "feel good" chemical that makes us want to continue experiencing that great feeling - similar to how an addict feels when they ingest their drug of choice.

I've also resumed reading The End of Overeating by David Kessler. Basically, the book explains why it's exceptionally difficult to resist certain foods and why it's so easy to overindulge. Great information!!

I love learning new information, and am looking forward to learning how to apply it to my situation. I realize there may be some setbacks, but I'm determined to give my best!

Do you know of any other resources that may be helpful to me? For those of you experiencing a similar situation, how are you handling it? 


  1. Your goals seem very bang on, love it. Giving it your very best is all that matters. Books - 'Willpower, the greatest human strength' is pretty good. Talks a lot about discipline, community, what your body needs, and how to create healthy space to make good decisions. I listened to the audio book and really enjoyed it!

  2. Yay! Way to refocus, Kari!! BTW... I will only send you BBF protein cupcakes. No more cake pops!��

  3. I love that you are writing about this subject. I definitely have food addiction issues, and sugar is the #1 trigger! I am in the middle of my very own 30 day No Sugar Challenge. It's hard with a capital H, but I already feel a lot better. I feel like my mood is more stabilized not eating sugar. I know, duh. I think I should read that book!

  4. Kari, you look beautiful in your August photo's... not contest lean, but athletic and healthy. I don't have to tell you the contest diet is not "normal" healthy eating! thus why you feel like crap. Every action has an opposite and equal reaction, you're just experiencing a normal reaction to having been on a restrictive diet. I got tired of the competition yo-yo and finally found the balance.. it was more of a internal, self-acceptance and commitment to self thing than commitment to a diet strategy... can't solve an internal problem with an external solution. I look great and feel more empowered than ever!! Good luck on your journey:)

    1. Thank you. After 6 years of competing, I'm well aware that my immediate reaction stems from a restrictive diet. What I'm currently working on is finding the tools to achieve a balance. I'm not searching for a diet strategy - I'm searching for a long-term solution to find balance. I believe there are more issues at play than just a "normal reaction" to a contest diet. Congrats on finding your balance.

  5. Kari,

    I like 'Eating Less' by Gillian Riley

  6. Thanks for the past couple posts, Kari, I just read the previous one as well. It's great that you can (and were willing) to blog about this topic though because I'm sure it effects more women than we realize. I've actually never competed but feel like I go through this sort of cycle almost weekly, to some extent. I follow a strict diet plan Sun-Fri and allow myself one cheat meal on Saturday. Lately that cheat meal has turned into eating horribly and in excess for the better part of Saturday. Eating way past the point of being full and being ashamed the whole time and for days afterward as well. Yet I continue to do it again the following weekend... I'm definitely going to do some of my own research on food addictions and the effects of sugar because this is not the way to live. Thanks again... please share any new information or useful tips that you come across :) Best of luck!