Saturday, August 8, 2015

Cool things that have come out of meditation- in weight maintenance

I've been attempting to practice daily mediation. After listening to my favorite role models at PaleoFx (Jason Seib, Sarah Fragoso), podcasts (Evolved Recovery and Overeaters Anonymous), and Serena Scott Thomas' meditation at the NSNG meetup in LA (based on Sharon Salzberg), I've been practicing mediation more often.

Meditation  is a habit and skill I wanted to develop, both as a way to relax and to keep my slippery slope thinking from hijacking my thoughts and brain during weight maintenance.

The old me told me things that would keep my food addiction alive. My disease living depended on the  brain hijacking, or slippery slope thinking. So I had to address all these thoughts without acting on them in long term weight maintenance. Irrational belief's = return to obesity.

 So it made sense that I needed all the tools I could get my hands on to replace those repetitive thoughts. In addition to meditation, I 'll use distraction activities like house projects, playing with the cats, gardening, walking , iphone games, even an episode or two of the Real Housewives (OC or NYS or NJ)

Since I've been practicing meditation, I've discovered guided meditation works best. 
My favorite Meditation Tools:

Free and paid apps- Calm, Coach.Me,  Insight Timer
Books: 8 minute meditation, by Victor Davich

Some of the cool things that have happened for me as far as thought changes with meditation- what's working now:

  • Keeping a lid on the slippery slope thinking (it's still there, but doesn't arise easily)
  • Relaxing my body before heading to sleep.
  • More happiness when gardening, interacting with the cats
  • Fewer negative thoughts
Here's what didn't work in the past:
  • The eat, repeat, repent cycle
  • The "I've blown it, so I'll start tomorrow, Monday, after vacation, next year cycle
  • The "I've been good/walked a lot/trained for a half marathon walking so I deserve this muffin, biscotti, pizza, cinnamon roll, Skinnycow ice cream.
  • The moderator WW leader told me I would binge if I didn't moderate, so I must eat a few points of M&M's * *This one is my favorite to laugh about- putting other people in charge...**
  • No one will know if I eat this frosting on the left over cake in the break room. Won't matter one bit.
  • Even in the first year of weight , well Lara bars are Paleo, so I'll have half, oh, that was good, I'll have another half. Oh, I'm not counting points so, I'll have these raisins, too. I've been hiking a lot...

I'm still not at daily meditation, but up to at least 5 days a week. I've also learned that I need shorter (5 minutes or less) meditation sessions during the week and I can use longer meditation sessions on the weekends. I'd rather meditate for 5 minutes daily than longer sessions less frequently.

Anyway, who else meditates? It doesn't take the place of long walks, being "in the zone" while practicing photography, or praying to my higher power, or sleeping well. I still do those things. I am finding it a simple way to relax during the day.

A Paleo food template will only take me so far in weight maintenance. I owe it to myself to keep my meditation game strong.
Laguna Beach, Summer 2015


  1. I just came across this today ... perhaps you'll find it interesting too!

  2. Ooooh, I like it, Beth. Thanks for the link. Pinning it to my weight maintenance resource board on Pinterest. I like the tree image. I want to add in chi movement in late 2015 or early 2016. Good stuff.

  3. I have replaced (very successfully) upsetting thoughts with Hail Mary (prayer). It is so successful that I find myself reciting the words in my brain before I even realize I am upset and need to get off those thoughts. So, I hear Hail Mary in my brain and then realize I was starting to ruminate. Rumination was a HUGE problem for me in the past. So this has been a very effective tool. I chose Hail Mary on purpose. I have always liked it. It is comforting.

    I also keep my eyes closed for almost all of Mass. It keeps my mind from wandering. I'm sure people have seen me and thought I was asleep, because I am very much in a meditative state for that whole hour+. I am very aware of every word. But truly in the zone.

    I has a very hard time getting started in meditation. My earliest efforts were in yoga classes. My mind would leap. I was squirmy. It was hard. Very hard to be alone with myself on my yoga mat. I learned over time. I am quite good at it now.

    1. That's great Vickie! I think it's great you've used the Hail Mary to train your brain. So valuable to have it be automatic, then think "oh! what's going on here.."

      Very important to reverse loops and trends. It saves me a lot of stress.