Sitting With Feelings

As I’ve alluded to on social media (and here!), lately I’ve been taking steps toward dealing with my food issues, among other things, and last night I dealt with one of the least pleasant aspects of that.

Sitting with my feelings. 

Too often, whenever I’ve felt upset (or, let’s be honest, happy, or bored, or pretty much any emotion), I’ve turned to food for comfort (or celebration, or activity), feeling like I “deserved it” because I was going through a shitty time (or a great time), and so why not reward myself with food. And that got me to a top weight in the mid-270s despite becoming more physically active.

For the past month, I’ve been trying the opposite. Whenever I’ve had the impulse to eat outside of my three meals, I stop, breathe, and think about whether or not I’m actually hungry, or if there’s something else going on. It hasn’t been perfect. The other night, I served myself a second big bowl of mac and cheese for dinner without batting an eyelash, just because it was a reflex and I didn’t take the time to stop and think. I was rewarded with a stomach ache. So, you know, there’s that. My body knows what’s up even if I don’t.

Yesterday was a particularly “good” day. I returned home after a tech scout for an upcoming video project related to Incredible Girl (start getting excited, people!), and the rainy, cold weather was making me restless. Every time I would sit down to do something, my brain would be like “Nope!,” and I’d get up and pace the apartment. Didn’t want to watch TV, didn’t want to read, didn’t want to write… So, as is my usual pattern, I walked to the kitchen and opened up the cabinet where the cereal is. But then I stopped. I took a breath. I listened to my body. I realized I wasn’t hungry at all. Then I walked to the living room where The Boy was sitting and just said, out loud, “I’m bored and restleeeeeeeeeeess….,” getting it out in a big, toddler-like whine. Then it occurred to me, what I really wanted to do was curl up under a blanket and take a nap. So I did. When I woke up about an hour later, I was refreshed, drank some water, and went about my day.

It was the most perfect example of taking a pause to examine my feelings before eating, and taking that moment saved me yesterday! I was thrilled.

Then, later that night, I was blindsided by a Mack truck of unadulterated emotion – and it wasn’t positive. It was as if suddenly, and without warning, every single insecurity, worry, and fear just came on and started to suffocate me. I was already in bed at this point, and just burst into tears. And as it was so late, I was already in bed, and I’d made the decision to not use food as a crutch, eating wasn’t an option. So I just cried. When The Boy came in to bed later on and realized something was wrong, I was comforted, and hugged, and held. After a while of that, I still couldn’t sleep, so I got up to see if I could tire myself out playing Candy Crush and Tetris. I moved candies and puzzle pieces and sat with how crappy I felt. And I didn’t eat. And I let it feel like shit. Eventually, I went to bed, emotionally spent and tired. But I didn’t eat. And I’m still here. And I feel better today.

Originally from the blog

That’s the point. The negative feelings I’m always so afraid of – the ones I don’t want to “burden” anyone with, the ones I don’t want to allow to turn me into a “negative person” – didn’t take me down. I allowed myself to feel them, I talked them through, and they passed. And I’m still here. I didn’t need to numb them, or shove them aside, or drown them in bowls of cereal. Even that moment earlier, when I was bored and restless, the moment I named my boredom and restlessness out loud, I realized what a dumb reason that was to eat. What’s more, I realized that there were so many other things I could be doing that would benefit me and not involve food at all, and I thought it insane that I would ever think to forgo that just to eat something.

It’s not always going to be this easy. I know this is something with which I’m always going to struggle. But I do know that, as I’ve spoken to other people who’ve dealt with food issues (or other addictions), it will get easier. It’s like anything else – the more you do it, the better you get at it. I need to remember that my negative feelings aren’t something I can ignore. They’re a signal from my subconscious that there’s something that I need to address, and I need to remember that when I do face them – when I speak them aloud or otherwise share them either with another person, or with God in quiet – they’re never as scary as I think they’re going to be. I always come through on the other side, and there’s always something to be done about them. Nothing is completely hopeless – even if it feels like it might be in the moment.

The key to getting to that is to Pause. To make room for quiet. When I have the urge to put something in my mouth, to remember that I can, but only after I’ve thought about it first. It’s not about Not Eating. It’s not about deprivation. It’s about de-emphasizing food’s place in my life. If I’m genuinely hungry, if it’s been a couple of hours since I’ve last eaten something and it makes sense for me to be hungry, then of course, I should eat (and take the time to enjoy it and not rush through it). But nine times out of ten, my desire to eat is for every other reason but that, and when I take the time to stop and think, the reasons becomes apparent. And that Pause a gift I’m giving myself. It’s me taking care of myself in the most important way.

It’s me saying Teresa, your feelings are important. You deserve to be heard. You deserve to be happy, and you won’t be until you deal with this. I will help you deal with it, and you will be OK. 

Ice cream doesn’t say that. 🙂

Pound By Pound: Thank You For Being Beautiful


Me at the Incredible Girl teaser shoot last night. I play Cupcake Dominatrix. :)

Me at the Incredible Girl teaser shoot last night. I play Cupcake Dominatrix. 🙂


Last night, as I walked through Sanctuary LAX wearing dominatrix garb during the shoot for the Incredible Girl teaser last night, a woman I’d never met stopped in her tracks and, completely earnestly and with no agenda, said “You are SO beautiful. Thank you for being so beautiful!”

That being the nicest thing a stranger’s ever said to me, I didn’t quite know how to respond! I said “Uh….thank you?” Then, mustering up some Cupcake Dominatrix (my character in Incredible Girl) confidence, I said “I aim to please.” 🙂

This totally reminded me that, no matter what I weigh, I’m actually gorgeous right now. And I have to say that during the shoot, as I caught glimpses of myself in mirrors dressed in fishnets, boy shorts, and a corset, I was rather pleased with my reflection. It’s easy to forget that it’s possible for you to look amazing when you spend most of your days away from other human eyes while toiling diligently at your writing in your apartment in your pajamas, so it’s nice to be reminded when you’re walking around in the world.

Anyway, despite having been too busy with writing-related stuff to work out the past couple of weeks, I did do my monthly measurements on the 12th. Here’s where I am right now:

Teresa September Stats (9/12/14):
Weight: 267.8lbs (-5.4lbs from last month / -9.4lbs since start)
Upper arm: 19 1/2″ (+ 1/2 from last month / -1″ since start)
Bust: 50″ (no change from last month / – 1/4″ since start)
Waist: 45 1/2″ (+ 1/4″ from last month / + 1″ since start)
Hips: 54 1/4″ (-1/8″ from last month / + 2/8″ since start)
Thighs: 33 3/4″ (no change from last month / +1/8″ since start)

So, apparently I’ve lost weight from areas on my body that I don’t regularly measure? I guess my calves and fingers are getting super-skinny right now. 😉

I will get back to working out. I haven’t been eating completely crazily, but I did have The Boy have to step in and warn me away from a bad habit (ie: eating ice cream too regularly). The Boy gave me a heads-up when it looked like I might start going overboard, and even though I got defensive, I eventually took what my better half had to say under consideration and realized that The Boy only did this out of concern for my health, and I was then able to stop and course-correct before going too far down a bad road.

Thank you, My Love!

Still, despite all this, I know that The Boy thinks I’m beautiful. Apparently, so do strangers in dungeons. 🙂

And so do I.

And I think you are, too. Yes, you. You reading this.

Thank you for being so beautiful. 

POUND BY POUND: Day 18 – Getting Out of a Funk

Wearily back in the saddle.

Wearily back in the saddle.

So, I haven’t exercised in three days. Come to think of it, I haven’t done much else either. For reasons I can’t explain, I’ve been in a bit of a funk the past few days. I’ve been inexplicably exhausted, not being able to haul my carcass out of bed before 10:30AM, I’ve been bored by everything, haven’t written much and couldn’t even bring myself to blog, and I’ve spent a majority of my time playing Tetris, watching the FX show The Bridge on HuluPlus (PS – it’s a great show), and generally not doing anything productive. Not to mention the fact that I seem to be suddenly afflicted with allergies from Hell. I’ve sneezed more in the past week than I have in my life, I’m congested, my throat’s been scratchy, and my nose constantly feels like I’m breathing through dust. I’ve taken both Claratin and cold medicine, and neither seems to have helped much. Thank God I had a work date at the Burbank library w/my new friends Jenny, Renee, and Alex on Tuesday. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have done any writing at all.

Until today. 🙂

Last night, I realized I couldn’t let my funk go on for much longer. So I started winding down for bed at 11PM, the way I do on my best days, meditating and journalling. Then I went to bed at a decent hour, and was miraculously not only able to wake up at 6AM this morning, but I wrote 5 more pages of script (which seems to be my average in 2 uninterrupted hours).

Day 18 Finish Screen

Day 18 Finish Screen

Then, I got back to DailyBurn, which in three days has come back around to the workout I did three days ago – Stability and Mobility 2. I definitely felt it, coming back into a Level 2 workout after not having exercised at all in three days. I got a bit worried when I started to feel a twinge in my chest while doing lunges, so I pulled back and stopped going as fast as I would’ve normally. That’s the thing. Every time you stop, it’s that much harder to get going again.

But the point is to get going again, I guess.

I’ll be blogging more later, but I’ll end this one here. I’m just glad that I was able to get back to it. Every time I sweat up a storm like I did this morning, I know I’m doing something good for myself. I need to remember that feeling.

POUND BY POUND: Day 15 – Weekends Off!

Starting Level 2!

Starting Level 2!

This past week, I started a new writing schedule that’s been working really well for me, but that’s also got me waking up earlier in the morning. However, despite going against my nature and forcing myself to be a morning person, I find that I’m more efficient throughout the day and getting a lot done.

Yet, it’s because of this that my weekends have become much more precious to me. On weekends, I don’t want to set an alarm, I don’t want to do anything “productive,” and this weekend I decided not to do DailyBurn. At first, I worried, because I thought I would backslide and get lazy again. But this morning, I got up, did my writing, and did my DailyBurn workout automatically. My work is tied to my exercise, and vice versa, as I’ve started a morning routine that I can keep up with. So, regular exercise continues to be a habit despite my taking the weekend off.

Today, I did True Beginner Day 15, which was the start of Level 2 – Stability and Mobility 2. Remember that challenge I’ve been wanting? Yeah, well I”ve got it! This certainly kicked things up a notch, and I was dripping with sweat by the end!

Day 15 Finish Screen

Day 15 Finish Screen

Later this morning, I’ll be walking to work, and later this week, I may be hiking and going back to jogging at my jogging partner’s request.

Also, I’ll be going shopping to buy the food I need to take part in the DailyBurn Ignite challenge. Stay tuned! 🙂

POUND BY POUND: Day 12 – DailyBurn Is Better!

Another workout DONE!

Another workout DONE!

I guess the Exercise Goddess heard my concerns about DailyBurn yesterday, because the site was working normally today! The “Day” matched the correct workout and everything! Here’s hoping it stays that way.

So, I’m on Day 12 of the True Beginner program and did Core 1. Like a BOSS.

This weekend, I’m going to figure out what other regular exercise I can do. I need to kick what I’m doing up a notch. When I’ve figured it out, you’ll of course be the first to know. 🙂

Day 12 Finish Screen

Day 12 Finish Screen

Keeping this one short and sweet, because I’ve got a busy day. See you all again tomorrow!

POUND BY POUND: Day 11 – DailyBurn Glitches

Worked up another sweat!

Worked up another sweat!

This is the first time I’ll ever have anything negative to say about DailyBurn



So, I told you about needing to change my time zone on my account. I figured that would be the end of any scheduling issues in my program. However, when I tried to do my workout tonight at around 6PM or so, it said that I was on Day 12, which would’ve been Core 1 again. Now, I just did Core 1 yesterday, because I had to flip it with the day before due to the time zone error, so I wasn’t about to do it again. I double-checked my time zone, and sure enough, it’s now on Pacific. So…why is it telling me that it’s tomorrow?

Here’s my program calendar, which shows the entire True Beginner program:

TB Calendar

As you can see, today (the 21st) is Day 11, yet the 22nd is highlighted (the dotted line around the day) for some reason as my “current” workout. So, my finish screen looked like this:

TB Day 11 (NOT Day 12!) Finish Screen.

TB Day 11 (NOT Day 12!) Finish Screen.

Also, 715 calories burned?! I’m sorry – I definitely worked hard – but where is that number coming from? There’s no WAY this workout burns 715 calories on ANYONE. Unless you’re doing the moves with 20 lb weights attached to your arms and feet or something.

Since I’ve completed the True Beginner program once before, I’m not too concerned about it. I’m just going to stick to what the calendar says no matter what the day counter says. I just don’t understand why the site is glitching like this all of a sudden. I’ve never had a problem like this before. I’m wondering if they’re doing maintenance, and hopefully all these kinks will be worked out soon?

Anyway, I did my workout. Huzzah. And for those of you following along, The “Day” in the titles of my blog post will always be the correct number, no matter what my Finish Screen photos say. *sigh*

POUND BY POUND: Day 10 – Right Workout, Wrong Time Zone

Down on the mat (or the towel) working my core!

Down on the mat (or the towel) working my core!

So, I just finished my DailyBurn True Beginner workout today, and I realized that there’s been a glitch in my day-counting! When I worked out last night, I did it a little after 9PM, not realizing that my DailyBurn account was set for Eastern rather than Pacific. So it gave me Day 10’s workout on Day 9, because it thought I was working out after midnight! In my photo and my blog post from yesterday, you saw Day 10 on my finish screen for Strength and Cardio 1 as well as in my post title (I’ve since corrected the day in my last post)!

When I just went to workout now, and got the same workout as yesterday, I got confused, but then looked at my DailyBurn calendar, figured out my mistake, and corrected the time zone on my account. So, from now on, all my days should be correct!

What I did today was do the workout I should’ve done yesterday, which was Core 1. Whenever I do this workout, I feel it in more and more of my core. I feel the workout spreading from the top of my rib cage all the way through my thighs, which I think is a good thing, considering that one’s “core” is the largest muscle group in the body. Each time, I try to do the exercises a little more deeply than last time, and I guess it’s paying off?

My REAL Day 10 Finish Screen.

My REAL Day 10 Finish Screen.

Anyway, just wanted to keep you updated on today’s workout. Off to run some errands and write some more!