T Nation

Nutritional Psychology


#1

Hello ; i am new to the forum ; are there any nutritional psychologists on the forum???? or people who have maybe been through the same problems as i go through at the moment????

I dont class myself as a 'competitive bodybuilder', but i do train with intensity, committment, determination and consistency, to improve my physique.

The main problem with food i have is -

I never have a cheat meal - i tell myself every weekend that i have worked hard all week - trained really well all week - and i should enjoy myself - even if it is just eating more clean calories - but just not weighing every piece of food i eat and eating clean - i even went out to buy some part baked bread today - to have some chicken baguettes - hardly unhealthy - yet i couldnt bring myself to eat them for whatever reason - annoying - as i think it must be hindering the ability to add mass (by limiting calorie intake to grow, but also possibly through stress and increased cortisol secretion).

I avoid all social events - so i can eat clean - i weigh all my food - i havent had a cheat meal in about 16 months - my girlfriend who is very supportive - never says anything - but i havent taken her out for meal or anything in nearly 2 years - no Chinese - no ice cream on a weekend - no relaxing - just weighing my food - and being almost robotic.

As you can see, i have been with this mindset for a while, and it has started to take over my life. I train with weights because i love it - but it is taking over my liufe - eating clean and counting every calorie - i really weant to enjoy some of the foods i ate before i changed lifestyle to lifting weights and training hard - but i cant seem to.

I have had anxiety and OCD, and i do still have that, which makes things more difficult. I have tried to see a specialist. I was on the waiting list to see a CBT but the waiting list is that long with the NHS (here in England) that i have never had an appointment. Had the first appointment with the psychiatrist, who then referred me to the CBT specialist, but like i say, never had an appointment.

Whilst i dont want to be a fat person - i have no aspirations to be a COMPETITIVE bodybuilder - and i dont really care too much if i can see my abs - so what is holding me back with my psychological problem with food?

Has anyone had similar problems and overcome them???? if so please provide some words of encouragement or advice!!!! it would be very much appreciated.

Thank you!!!!


#2

I had a similar problem when first beginning to take training seriously. A lot of the issues you describe I can relate with. The fact that you are asking for help and outlining you’re concerns shows you have taken the first step on the way to recovery. Don’t give up.

I’ll explain how I overcame my problems and you may pick something up from it:

Weighing my food and obsessing over every calorie came to a head after a trip back home to see the family. After this I began to remember all the fun I used to have, the friends, opportunities and experiences that had gone by the wayside for the sake of weights, nutrition and supplements.

I began to put life into perspective. Did I want to miss out on all the fun stuff just to be that guy who is huge but stays in his apartment all day long and weighed his food?

I was aiming to be perfect at everything. Perfection is unachievable. I began to relax a little, go out for a few beers now and then. Have some pizza. Go for some trips. What was interesting to note was that when I started to achieve some sort of balance everything began to improve much more that I could have believed. I ended up enjoying training more, making better progress etc

What helped me kick the food habit was the 10% rule. Some people have other takes on it but as long as 90% of your meals are clean then you have a little wiggle room. The difference between 100% compliance and 90% is negligible. Imagine getting 100% in a test when all you needed to do to get an A was 80% or 90%? Why would you want to bust your balls just for those last marks when they are meaningless.

As I’m not a qualified professional and as you can see I have only outlined how I overcame the problem. It would be a good choice to push through on the appointment with one of the specialists. I know the NHS sucks living in Northern Ireland but there should be some sort of drop in clinic for people concerned about their eating habits.

Chris


#3

Chris ; thank you for your reply ; that is interesting that you had similar problems in the past ; and it is great that you overcame those.

Do you think then that if you eat a 90 : 10 ratio of clean to a bit of what your enjoy ; the difference will be negligable???

I imagine if you eat 49 meals per week and 4 of those meals are a bit different from what you would usually eat ; that would give a ratio of 91.8% : 8.2% clean to a bit of what you enjoy.

Would you notice that difference do you think???

Thanks again for your reply.


#4

Check out a book by Lyle McDonald called Flexible Dieting. Also, the leangains approach seems to be suited towards non-professionals who still want to maintain a shredded physique while having a social life.


#5

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