Embracing Hunger

hungerWhen I made my first post back in 2009 I weighed over 270 pounds, the year before that I had weighed close to 300.  For 2010 and 2011 I lost weight for the first time in my life at a substantial rate.  Once I reached my current weight of about 230 I leveled off.  During those years I was losing weight I became used to being hungry and sore.  Sore from weight lifting and hungry by not eating nearly as much.

About a week ago a switch was clicked in my head, I’ve come to embrace hunger again.  I was watching videos of people who had transformed their bodies through diet and exercise and in one a girl said, “I stopped putting garbage into my body.”  Those words stuck with me.  They stayed with me as I cased mail, loaded my car and began to deliver.  They stayed with me when I got hungry.  I usually buy a doughnut, maybe some candy, a bog of chips or snack mix, or something to eat while I drive around all day stuffing mailboxes.  Last Monday I bought 3 peaches, the next day I bought a bag of grapes.  Saturday we have doughnuts at the office, I usually have at least have two.  Saturday I walked by them twice both times saying to myself, “garbage.”

I’m a candy addict, I love sweet stuff, I haven’t had candy since this epiphany last week.  I’ve been waking up hungry but I do not go straight to the couch with food as I have been doing for the last year or two, instead I go for a walk or inline skate, then I come home and eat when I’m truly hungry.  Hunger is a strange sensation, it arrives and seems to demand immediate action, but if you ignore the sensation, it becomes much less immediate, as if it becomes a program working in the background, not going away but you hardly notice it’s there.  I’m sure that many of us, people like me who have never gone without food for lack or religious reasons, we can’t even understand true hunger.

Since this change occurred in my brain I’ve felt different, more motivated, more energetic, and more alive.  I’ve been riding much more regularly and as I mentioned earlier, I don’t wake up with an overwhelming urge to go straight to the couch.  In the last couple of week I’ve lost 6 pounds and went under 230 for the first time since last year.  Embracing hunger is the key, it’s a feeling, not your master.

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About Matt Gholson

Cycling, school teaching, husband.
This entry was posted in Barn Door Cycling, lifestyle, training, Weight Loss and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Embracing Hunger

  1. Moe says:

    Nice work Mr. G! I have a very hard time walking past a box of donuts…. If I would stop eating garbage, I could probably weigh 15 to 20 lbs less. It is amazing how much better and more alive your body feels when running on premium fuel instead of garbage. Keep up the good work. You will be crushing souls on the bike even more than already. Road Bike Barry better look out!

  2. Breck says:

    It’s an interesting self-driving circle. When I am exercising regularly, I crave healthier foods – when I eat healthy foods, I have more energy and desire to exercise. However, when eating junk I feel that temporary satisfaction of giving into cravings but am much more lethargic and don’t want to go run, ride, or lift.

    I sometimes wonder how much what we perceive to be “hunger” is really just boredom and that we have programmed ourselves to eat when sitting on be couch and watching TV, or to grab a soda or snack immediately when we get home from work.

    • Matt Gholson says:

      Yeah totally agree, fast and easy, but ultimately hollow is the dark side. I know that certain activities I’ve enjoyed in the past will almost automatically make me eat without even a bit of hunger. Playing cards for instance, I would eat constantly while playing cards.

      • Breck says:

        If I am going on a long road trip I feel the urge to buy a coke and cheetos. Nothing else feels right to snack on. At the movie theater it is SO difficult to not buy popcorn and a soda.

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