I binged on chocolate and now I hate myself

Oct 12, 2013

Yesterday, I woke up with severe allergies.  I had a terrible headache, I couldn't breathe, and all I wanted to do was sleep.  I cancelled my 7am client which should tell you something.
 
I NEVER cancel clients. 
 
So, the day started out pretty poorly.  And I started thinking about chocolate.  For whatever reason, Snickers was the object of my obsession this time. 
 
As the day went on, I HAD TO HAVE A SNICKERS
 
So the inner dialogue started in my head:
"Don't do it. You'll only feel terrible afterwards."
"Just do it. It's the only way to stop thinking about it."
"Don't do it. Stay strong, the urge will pass."
"Just do it. No one will know."
 
And then the final dialogue, the dialogue that won:
"Ok, just do it.  You really want it.  Stop fighting it.  It's just one Snickers bar.  No one will know.  Just enjoy it, don't feel guilty, and move on."
 
The truth is, it is just one Snickers bar, and I really did want it.  There would be no reason to feel guilty about it.  Unfortunately, it wasn't just one Snickers bar. 
 
I bought two Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, and a king-sized Snickers.  I ate them both in about three minutes. 
 
I returned to the gym, trained my client, and got in my car to drive home. 
 
I stopped at a gas station and bought a king-sized Peanut M&Ms.  Ate them as I drove. 
 
I mean, I think I ate them.  It's only a five minute drive home, so I ate them really fast because I didn't want my wife to know.  Think about that for a second:
 
I felt guilty before I even ate them!
 
I didn't want my own wife to know!  I was like a fat kid sneaking cake, eating it with his hands in the kitchen before his mom came home from work.  Instead of the evidence being cake smeared across my face and hands, I was afraid my wife would smell the chocolate on my breath.  My inner dialogue after my binge-fest?
 
"You're such an idiot.  WHY did you do that??"
"You're eating nothing but chicken and vegetables tomorrow."
"You're SUCH a LOSER!"
 
When I woke up this morning, my first thought was: 
 
"WHYYYYYY????"
 
You want to know the sick part?  Part of me is trying to rationalize eating more junk!  I'm actually telling myself, "You know what, the week is ruined anyway.  Just forget about eating clean until Monday.  Then you can have a fresh start."
 
Ridiculous! I'm trying to rationalize THREE more days of terrible eating! 
 
So how do we stop this behavior?
Have a clear goal.  In a study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers examined brains during a craving and found that awareness of one's goal activates the prefrontal cortex - a part of the brain that can inhibit the reward region. 
 
Simply put: ALWAYS remember your goal!  Write it down and carry it with you, or make a note in your phone.  Be specific and detailed.  When that inner dialogue starts, look at your goal.  It will be much harder to rationalize. 
 
My problem was that I didn't have a goal.  Had I had a concrete goal, my inner dialogue may have been:
 
"Just do it. It's the only way to stop thinking about it."
"Don't do it. You want to have a 31 inch waist and weigh 178 pounds. Plus, you always feel terrible after you binge."
 
It would have worked. 
 
You know, I was right about one thing when I started my binge-fest:  Nobody knew. 
 
Until now.

 

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Category: Inspiration

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