Almost Fifteen Months of Bright Line Eating

It really struck me a couple of days ago what I've accomplished and how I've changed in the past 15 months. I knew intellectually but all of sudden one day last week I really FELT it. I felt how enormous the changes were -- and I don't just mean my body which is 76 pounds lighter now. Many of the changes have nothing to do with my body or the way I look, or the way I eat. They are internal -- mental, spiritual -- changes.

Meditation: Part of what got me to sign up for the Bright Line Eating Bootcamp last October was that it came with a daily meditation course from Monique Rhodes. I'd long wanted to incorporate daily meditation into my life. I did some of the meditation course during bootcamp but wasn't able to make it stick as a daily habit -- probably because there were so many food and eating related habits to build up. However I got back to the meditation course this Summer and this time it did stick. I meditate for 15 minutes almost daily. I'm still using the Monique Rhodes meditations -- I love her voice and the occasional reminder during the meditation to gently come back to my anchor or my breath. I also use an app on my phone, Insight Timer, for other guided meditations. I find that my day goes better when I meditate -- not that nothing bad happens -- but that my ability to respond calmly and from my highest self is much, much better. At first I thought 15 minutes was a VERY long time -- now there are many days when I want to sit quietly for longer!! I use the time immediately after my meditation for a short devotional time where I'll pray and read the daily reading from my Day By Day app. Believe it or not I am loving this practice so much that I get up 20-30 minutes earlier to do it before I leave for work -- and I leave for work at 7 so I'm now getting up between 5:30 and 5:45am -- that would have been just unthinkable a year ago when I would snooze as long as possible and finally rouse myself at 6:15 and run  madly around the house to get out the door by 7 or 7:15 and then arrive 5-10 minutes late for work -- all agitated. Now I get to arrive by 8 and am usually much calmer (though admittedly at times the traffic gets the better of me).

More space in my brain: I now have freedom from sugar addiction and constant food thoughts. So, this is sort of about the food, but what's the most striking about this is the freedom part. I no longer have so much brain space taken up with thinking about when I'm going to eat my next sugary yummy food. We can have Christmas goodies sitting out in our work area all day and I hardly give them a thought. In the past they would have been calling to me all day long and I would have kept going back for more and more and more until I felt sick. I eat and enjoy three meals a day and in between those meals I don't think much about food at all and can get on with doing other things. I have to do more up front planning, so that I have the food I need, especially at work where the options are limited in our cafeteria. Now that I'm on maintenance I am hardly ever hungry -- just the good kind of hunger that I get before a meal that makes eating that meal more satisfying. If I am hungry in between meals I can have some herbal tea and that almost always makes me feel better and full enough. I mean sure I'm tempted at times, but I'd say that more than 95% of the time I don't eat between meals, I eat no added sugar or flour and I measure my quantities. My brain is still broken when it comes to knowing how much to eat to maintain my weight, so I like having the measurement and weight guidelines. These also make sure I eat enough fruit and vegetables to stay full and healthy -- I'm sure I wouldn't otherwise.

Having to feel and to deal with my emotions: I don't get to numb these by eating anymore so I'm having to deal with them and work on them. This is hard -- but a good thing to. I'm still very much learning how to do this.... to feel my feelings. This goes along with Connection which I'm also working on -- reaching out more, and not self-isolating. This means focusing on the people at an event and not the food -- this is uncomfortable for an introvert! Also, asking for help and support when I need it from my Mastermind group, or my Gideon Games group, or in the Bright Lifers website. This is still very much a work in progress for me.

I'm looking forward to whatever the next year brings me. This is a journey and a life style change -- it's not a diet. It's not that I can't eat certain foods, or quantities or at certain times -- it's that I choose not to eat certain foods, and to eat three meals a day without snacking.  This is the BIG difference between the Bright Line Eating plan and other weight loss/diets.  1.) It's not a diet. 2.) There's a plan for transitioning to maintenance and for maintaining the weight loss 3.) It's a community that supports each other though this journey.

My weight trajectory over the past year (starting December 2017 after 2 months of Bright Line Eating). You can see how I transitioned into maintenance and landed my "plane" smoothly. 


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