I am NOT a Stress Eater

November 3, 2008 · 15 comments

I am NOT a stress eater. I am NOT a stress eater. I am NOT a stress eater.

It’s important for me to reiterate that positive thought because frankly, I am a stress eater but I’ve got to stop it. I got some bad news today that has caused me stress and my initial reaction was to seek solace with some greasy food at McDonald’s. I fought against that, and had a modest lunch. However, I did take the family out to dinner and I went against my initial thoughts of a salad and I ordered a bowl of Chicken Tortilla soup and the Chicken Saltimbocca. Not to mention two margaritas and some dessert.

OK, one night isn’t going to kill me. I think I know what I am doing, and I think that tonight’s outing was a normal reaction that won’t be a big deal if it isn’t repeated. I can’t sit around wallowing in stress (and Oreos*) however.

So if I am telling myself that I am not a stress eater then what exactly am I? Why a Stress Exerciser of course! I did lower body strength training this morning, and I’m set for upper body tomorrow as well as jumping back into the Couch to 5k program on my treadmill.

I’m gonna sweat this stress out of me!

* - On a funny note, “Oreo” was the answer to clue 1 Across in today’s New York Times Crossword Puzzle. The funny thing is, I didn’t get it right away and because of the way I solve crosswords, I ended up writing that answer as my last answer to finish the puzzle. I can’t get away from the damn things!

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AndrewE November 4, 2008 at 2:09 am

John, I hate to say it but sometimes one day can kill you in that it totally derails you. You do seem somewhat prone to that. I am that way myself.

Be honest Andrew - I’m totally prone to that! The good news is the next day I did both strength training and cardio, and I ate well. So for at least a day I hopped back on the tracks.

Mr. Meltdown November 4, 2008 at 4:19 am

I think the first thing you have to realize is just like me you took action. You are getting back on track and still focused on your goals. I am in the same boat trying to lose weight also I know that if I had a rough day I need to just keep it moving. Proud of you my friend keep moving and let’s get in shape and reach our goals! I will keep up with your blog it is very well done.

Best regards,

Mr. Meltdown

Thanks! Another man on the scene, I like it. I’ve added you to my blogroll and I look forward in joining you on your own journey.

MizFit November 4, 2008 at 6:51 am

ok laughing about the word oreo.

and you KNOW I am 100% a believe in the power of positivity.


no derailing.

we can do this.

Greg November 4, 2008 at 7:39 am

Hey man! I’m with you on this. I was a stress eater, and still do sometimes. For the most part, I’ve become a stress exerciser. It’s funny. We all know that exercise reduces stress, but for some reason when we’re the most stressed out, we avoid exercise in favor of food.

We humans don’t make much sense, do we?

Not always, nope! But stress exercising does make sense and I hope I can stick with it.

Charlie Hills November 4, 2008 at 8:39 am

No, we don’t, Greg. But a machine with 14.7 quadrillion moving parts is going to be a bit difficult to predict. I think part of our collective problem is we vastly under-appreciate the complexities and assume that we have total control over everything all the time: simply because we have the ability to “think.” We say, “Don’t eat that Oreo” but then we eat the Oreo and spend endless hours pondering, “Why’d I do that?” when the reason is: because your body wanted the Oreo and elected not to consult you.

Oh man, there I go again rambling. What was the question again?

“because your body wanted the Oreo and elected not to consult you” - so true, I love it! What we need is a change in leadership around here. YES WE CAN!

Matt November 4, 2008 at 9:23 am

Not sure what your plans are with the couch to 5k but I found that I was much more determined once I had signed up and paid for my race. 5k is a good distance. If you were as crazy as I am you would sign up for a Jan 1st race. I am going to try to find a festive new years eve race. I think that would just be a blast.

Running is such great aerobic exercise. Those joints that you thought could not take the pressure become much stronger than you thought possible.

I can see how signing up in advance would be a good way to go and I may just do it. But dude, I’m in Minnesota so January 1st is so OUT! Maybe Tony has an idea for a low-key spring 5k around these parts?

Fat Matt November 4, 2008 at 2:29 pm

I used to be a stress eater… well probably still am, but what helps me cope with it is that whenever I feel like eating junk food or sweets because of stress, I ask myself: ‘Is it really going to help here? Is it really going to help?’

It USUALLY works :)

The problem is remembering to think!

Steve@weightlossweapons.com November 4, 2008 at 3:04 pm

I have always been a boredom eater, stress actually suppresses my appetite and eat less.

The more you think about those Oreo’s the more they will start popping up around you.

Yep, I’m a boredom eater too. One thing I have been doing that has helped with that is to drink a glass of water first, then reassess my hunger.

jodo November 4, 2008 at 4:15 pm

When I get stressed I find that I can’t eat much at all. Too much adrenalin. Having a session in the gym helps though.

Sadie November 4, 2008 at 5:22 pm

First I want to say that I hope everything’s okay! Not sure what your bad news was, but I hope you’re okay…

I used to be a stress eater, but more-so a stress drinker. The beer is what killed me in the calorie and carb department. I’ve been sober almost 3 months now, though, and as far as stress eating goes, I’ve cured that with just thinking about what it’s doing to my progress. When I get stressed out, I just have to think that if I eat I’ll get even more stressed out by the extra calories and weight I’ll put on! :)

Everything will be fine, thanks Sadie. Congrats on your sobriety!

JLH November 4, 2008 at 10:40 pm

Great job on recognizing that stress can cause you to overeat. I too am a huge stress eater. Knowing that you tend to overeat during stressful times can help you keep an eye out for it and nix it before it is too late. Sometimes if I really am in the mood to stress eat, I will snack out of a bag of pre-cut broccoli, cauliflower and carrots I bought at the store. That is a healthy kind of stress eating!

Yep - I did stress munch on an apple yesterday, but I was able to do so because I recognized what was happening and took proper action.

Joe S. November 5, 2008 at 10:36 pm

I am prone to go out to eat once in a while just like you did so I understand. I agree that as long as its once in a while we’ll be fine. I went out to eat on election day because I didnt feel like cooking that night. I ate fairly healthy with a grilled chicken sandwhich and a veggies. Margaritas sound great, should of had me a couple of those too!

Stick to healthy!

Angie November 5, 2008 at 11:03 pm

Well my stress was not nearly as high as yours and yet we went out to eat on Monday night also. I’m thinking I could be called a stress eater :-) Okay, maybe hyper stress eater (you know what I mean). But I inadvertently did a good thing as the restaurant server gave me my son’s steak by mistake (an 8oz lean piece of some kind of meat - instead of the juicy 12 oz rib eye I was expecting) but I didn’t even know it until I was almost done with the darn thing and my son had already polished off the rib eye. Hey score one for the home team - even if it was a touchdown in the wrong direction (bet you never knew a girlie girl like me knew those sport analogies). I am so glad you commented on my blog so I found you here. But I can only say I wish I had known earlier I could use a positive influence 7-4.
Take care and keep up the great work!!!! I may have stopped wishing on stars but I still believe in the power of positive encouragement.

Mmm, 12oz rib eye making me hungry. I should have waited to read this in the morning, don’t want to night-time graze!

GeorgieGirl November 8, 2008 at 12:32 am

Well, congrats on the positive thinking! I never thought of trying to convince myself I’m not a stress eater. On the other hand, I have found the power in stress excercising!

Thanks Georgie - great to hear from you!

Petra Weiss August 17, 2009 at 10:49 am

What is helping me a lot to reduce stress - and I am a stress eater, too! - is to be more mindful about everything I am doing. Only do one thing at a time (force yourself!) and do what you are doing with enjoyment and consciously. You will find over time that your stress level will fall, and you will actually get more done. It’s weird, but that’s how it is. :)

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