The Sugar-Free Rollercoaster: An Update

The Sugar Roller CoasterLast summer, I gave up sugar. I made it all the way to Thanksgiving weekend without eating ANYTHING that had sugar as the first or second ingredient. I dropped around 15 pounds. I felt better. I was much more productive.

Then holiday season hit. A one-day indulgence after Thanksgiving turned into two, turned into a week, turned into “Who am I kidding? It’s Christmas! I’ll start again after the holidays.” The whole month was a giddy frenzy of chocolate and sugar highs and lows. And of feeling massively ADD the whole time. I couldn’t focus on anything. I was irritable when in withdrawal, manic when on the stuff. I gained back 5 pounds.

After Christmas, I was true to my word. I got back off the sugar. I lost the 5 pounds. But by mid-February, I was struggling. I was craving sweets in a way I hadn’t in a long time. I caved on three separate days. Then my birthday rolled around, and what was supposed to again be a one-day indulgence day turned into a week. That was at the beginning of March.

I fought my way back again, and have been sugar-free for the past two weeks. However, my weight has crept up again, back to the post-Christmas level. And the cravings have been bad, as has my diet (it’s amazing how good white flour tortillas heated in the microwave are, and don’t even get me started on those horrible-for-you-but-still-stupidly-addictive McDonald’s egg and cheese biscuits.

Today, I fell off the wagon into a package of Milano cookies. I vow it will be a one-day dip. I know it’s because I’m battling self-image issues today after seeing some photos from this weekend’s VA Love Fest, in which it’s once again clear that I am much bigger (and my chin much saggier) than I think I am in my head.

It’s a roller coaster, and lately it’s thrown me for a loop. But I’m determined to get back on, to keep riding, to not give up and just fall endlessly into the sugar trap. Am I frustrated that more weight hasn’t fallen off? Of course. But not surprised, given the other indulgences I’ve found. I also know there are multiple other reasons to stay off the sugar, the biggest one being the profound difference it makes in my ability to concentrate and focus.

Still, I’m fessing up to say it’s not been all smooth sailing, this blasted journey. I’m struggling today. I might struggle tomorrow. I know this is not the last battle in this endless war. I’m fighting the demon in my head that’s saying, “Girl, you only live once; why are you depriving yourself?”

But I’m still fighting the good fight.

Unless someone stops by with cheesecake today. (Please? Pretty please?)

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