While I was drinking I had a degree of anxiety about gaining weight. I knew wine was exceedingly calorific (and G & slimline T just did not hit the same spot) and compensated with fewer and fewer food calories and as much exercise as my nauseating hangover allowed. Before a big night out I would exercise throughout the day and eat as little as possible. If eating out I would choose the salad (dressing on the side), no starter (more wine time whilst stomach empty) and definitely no dessert. Not even a consideration. Never.
And all this micro-management worked to a degree. Largely, my weight stayed acceptable (although I must have been malnourished) despite fluctuating with frequent morning after the night before carb and junk food fests.
When I stopped drinking, I did not lose weight. On the contrary: my anxiety has gone and I am more relaxed about everything. This is usually a good thing but being more relaxed about my eating and weight means 'Yes, I'll just have that, no, it doesn't matter, of course I'm having dessert'. The excuse of not having wine and lots of spare calories does not stretch to half of what I eat.
In the last few months I have tried endless diets, read 'moderation'. And guess what? It doesn't work. I've tried and failed so often it reminds me exactly of my attempts at moderating wine.
So, from yesterday I'm tackling my biscuit laden diet the same way. By having none at all. Not even one. Not even for a treat or on a special occasion, in an attempt to break the cycle of failure, eat clean, eat when I'm hungry and eat nutritious stuff rather than sweet treats. I'm doing the Cambridge plan: three meal replacement products and one protein based meal per day thrown in.
I've heard about the horrid 3 day cold turkey phase as carbs are lowered and sugar eliminated. I've never lasted beyond 36 hours due to fatigue and headache but this time I'm going to roll with it and ride the storm, putting my faith in those who have done it before me, who promise it gets easier and tell me I will never look back. Just like those sober for a longer time than me did to encourage me through the difficult start of that journey. I know it won't be easy but then neither was giving up wine. Perhaps I've forgotten how excruciatingly difficult those first 3 days were?
As I said to myself on Day 1 going AF, if I don't make the change now, what will it take to make me do it? And as ever, I'll be doing it one day at a time. Abstaining only for today, and tomorrow I will make that decision again.