When you're in a good weightloss routine, things like a cold or a stomach bug will throw a wrench in your plans.
That's why you need to know how to play the mental game of weightloss.
Because when life happens, the only thing stopping you from losing weight is bullshit thinking like…
- “See! I can't ever lose weight.”
- “Something always happens.”
- “I always get sent back to square one.”
But I haven't met anyone who's overweight because they get too many stomach bugs.
If being sick was the only reason I was overweight, losing weight would have been easy. The rest of the fucking year, eating healthy would be easy.
Nothing needs to be perfect for you to lose weight when you know how to get back on track when your routines go to shit.
Listen to Episode 303: Weightloss and Being Sick. It will help you get your weightloss back on track when shit happens.
Now there are even more ways to get your Corinne fix! Listen to Losing 100 Pounds with Corinne on these platforms:
Ready to lose your weight for the last damn time? Join the No BS Weightloss Program today!
Hello everybody. Welcome back. I’m going to record a podcast today on being sick. So I am on day three of a pretty wretched stomach flu. And as I’ve been going through this, I’ve been thinking about how often in weight loss we use sickness as an excuse or as a reason to be afraid that we can’t lose weight. And so I have really paid attention the last few days. So just to give you a rundown of what I’ve been through on Christmas Day… And you may be hearing this podcast much later or you may be watching the YouTube video and think like, Kareni don’t look that sick. Let me just tell you, makeup does wonders and it took a lot of makeup today to get me to look like something other than the dead. So the day after Christmas… So Christmas Eve, my husband came down with a stomach bug, and we thought that it was probably because he just ate a little too much because he had colon cancer surgery not too long ago.
Everything has come back as good as it can. So thank you for all the prayers that I have been getting. Chris is doing fine and he will not need anything other than just rest and recovery to get over it. And so he has been resting and recovering, but on Christmas Eve he woke up in the middle of the night throwing up, all the things, like mud butt, you name it. And he was in bed all day on Christmas Eve and was functional by Christmas Day in the evening, enough so that we could still go to dinner. We had planned a dinner with our entire family, so we went to the dinner. He ate very light. He was really trying not to put too much on his stomach. Well, everything was fine until the Tuesday after Christmas. So Christmas was on Sunday, Tuesday morning I woke up and I was like six o’clock in the morning thinking, I got to go the bathroom like urgently. And I went and things were very loose, let’s put it that way.
Well, next thing I know, I’m going to the bathroom over and over again and then started in with extreme nausea. It felt like the worst hangover of my life. And fortunately I never actually threw up, but I laid in bed moaning until about 6:00 PM that night and took about a whole bottle of Pepto. I mean on my knees pretty much praying to the baby Jesus in the golden diaper that I would just either puke or get better, something just needed to shift. So the whole day I was in bed moaning, groaning, drinking water, all the things. The next day I felt a little better, my fever had broke but I didn’t feel good. And so I decided to cancel all my meetings and I stayed in bed all day. And y’all if you know me, I am a go-go kind of person. I must be on the deathbed if I am like, I am not working. I am not doing anything. I am just going to sit here.
And so, while I was lying around in my sick bed and unable to do anything, I did take a shower. I will give myself credit that by Tuesday I had enough strength to shower and eat some Rice Krispies. We had boxes of Rice Krisp. I was like, thank God, Chris has been taking such good care of himself because Rice Krispies has become a staple in his post-surgical diet. And the first thing I asked for when I got up the next day because I was so empty, I was just like, “I think I could have some Rice Krispies.” So I ate a bowl and Snap, Crackle and Pop never tasted so good. So the whole time I’m sitting there thinking about what can I learn from this? Because I use everything in my life as a way to try to figure out how I can teach other people just how to do life better, especially when it comes to weight loss because the one thing I know about weight loss is we just all make it so fucking hard on ourselves.
We find every reason to be broken, why we have a setback, you name it. So one of the first things is to really understand that we’re not overweight because of what we do, eat when we’re sick. Now, I watch this all the time inside my membership, someone will join or they will have lost 20 pounds or something. And suddenly they’ll get a cold or they’ll get a flu or something will happen and they can’t exercise. Even though I don’t even tell them to exercise, a lot of them do exercise. They like to go for walks, they like to do yoga or they do their elliptical, some of them strength train, but they have some routines. And so they will suddenly say to themselves, “See, I can’t ever lose weight. Something always happens. I always get sent back to square one.” All kinds of shit like that when they get sick.
I promise every single person listening to this, unless you have a serious medical condition like cancer or something along those lines, I’m talking about run of the mill, catching shit from babies at a daycare, putting your hands on a card at Target, going to work. And Josie over there came to work and she shouldn’t have because she’s sneezing and shit. I’m into more of that kind of stuff. So do not write into me saying, “You don’t know about my chronic disease.” I ain’t talking about chronic diseases. I am talking about when you get bullshit sick like me, a stomach bug, a cold, a flu, whatever it is. So when I think about it, I always remind myself that I was never overweight because I had so many colds and flus that I had to change the way I ate to accommodate them. Good lord, if that was the only problem I’d ever had weighing 250 pounds, it would’ve been real easy to lose weight because the rest of the year I’d be just eating like a normal person, not overeating, saying no to sweets when I knew I wasn’t hungry, not emotionally eating.
So one of the first things to watch out for is to just listen. What are you telling yourself when you’re sick? If you’re telling yourself, I’m going to go back to square one, no, you ain’t. You going to spend a few days barely eating or eating shit like me. I have had nothing for days other than Rice Krispies, egg drop soup, what else have I ate? That’s it I think, oh, I had some Wonder Bread. We’ve been buying Wonder Bread because we know it’s white as fuck bread, no nutrition. We’ve been trying to keep everything as easily digestible as possible for Chris. So you want to make sure that… Oh, I had some white rice. A lot of people will say like, “Well, and I eat saltines and I eat like, oh my God, I’m having carbon stuff.” It’s like yeah, your body needs digestible, easy and energy. So you just going eat what you can tolerate. And this is the crazy thing, is that your brain is going to sit there and make all this shit a problem. I want you to see, maybe I still have diet rules around foods.
None of that stuff makes us overweight. What makes us overweight is eating that stuff when we eat too much of it because we think something’s wrong with it. And we need to scarf it all down because we’re going to take it away again. Or we’re eating Rice Krispies at nine o’clock at night because I don’t get a break during the day. This is my only time for mama, and so mama’s going to eat because she deserves it. Now, if you’re eating Rice Krispies at nine o’clock at night, it’s still like the Rice Krispies. It’s you not learning how to do self-care, learning how to be guilt-free when you sit on your ass after the kids go to bed, that’s still emotional eating. We have to quit blaming food as the biggest problem. I have just like the vast majority of people I have ever talked to on the Internets, the vast majority of the people I have ever worked with, food has not been the problem.
Now, if you’re diabetic or something along those lines, I’m not talking to you on this. But even with my diabetics and stuff, even with my people with menopause and things like that where they’re like, well, I don’t know, blah, blah, blah. At the end of the day, if you will prioritize cutting out the emotional eating first. Figuring out how to free yourself from emotional eating and give yourself the gift of emotional caregiving because that’s really the mismatch, is that we don’t emotionally care for ourselves except with food. But when you solve that problem, then you can work on quality of foods because then you’ll know if quality of foods are really a factor. And here’s the other part of that, most of the time what people tell me is that when they learn how to emotionally care for themselves and they get rid of emotional eating in its place, they don’t want half the foods they used to lean and depend on.
Those foods are not a dependency anymore, so it’s a lot easier to eat less of them. They actually now really enjoy them when they eat. They eat them without shame and guilt afterward. They no longer have to scarf them down for fear that they’re going to take them away, or scarf them down to outrun their shame for having them in the first place. So when you’re sick, I want you to pay attention to the stories you have around food and the story you have around being sick. And the first take takeaway is you are not overweight because of what you eat when you have a cold, a flu or a stomach bug. Allow yourself to take care of yourself when you have those things. The best way to lose weight is learning how to listen to your body, how to listen for your truest needs and how to respond to them. Learning how to trust that your body will guide the way.
And if the best it can do is wonder bread, applesauce, bananas, Rice Krispies, some ice cream, whatever that is for you for a few days while you’re sick, then just do that knowing that when you are not sick, you are going to go back to caring for yourself in ways that you know are true self-care which when… For me, I have been thinking about, all right, when I start getting a real appetite back, what are the first things I want to layer back in? What are the first things that I can put back in that will get my energy back, help me get clearheaded, help me sleep. I will make good choices when I’m thinking that. But if I’m sitting there thinking I’ve gone in reverse, I’m probably going to gain weight, whatever that is, I’m going to make poor decisions on the way back or it’s going to take me forever to go back to true self-care.
The second thing is notice how eating is different. Now, this was a big one for me. I lost my appetite completely while I was sick and saying no to eating was quite simple. My stomach was just like, it’s a no. And my brain was like, I don’t care. I kept seeing food commercials and I would just turn it off. I would think about food and I’d be like, Ooh, no, right now I feel terrible. The key here is you don’t need to be sick in order to say no to food. My thoughts were what we’re doing all of it. So when I would have an urge to want to eat something, when I would think about food, my brain would interfere, and it gave me a compelling reason to say no. It was saying things like, your stomach’s not going to like this. This might hurt. This might make things worse. I don’t know about this one. And I want you to think about that. Most of the time when we’re not sick, our brains will say things like, ooh, we want this or what do you think about this?
It offers up a suggestion and that’s not the conversation we’re having. Like yeah, that sounds good. Well, I wish I didn’t have cravings. We’ll say things like that that give us no traction to saying no to bullshit emotional eating. I was sitting here thinking, I still have cravings and wouldn’t it be awesome if every time I did I would tell myself, I don’t really want this. I just think I do. This might hurt keeping my weight off. This won’t be helpful to making sure that my emotional needs are met. Now, it was easier when I was sick to have those automatic thoughts. But here’s what I want to tell all of you, we have to get better at not waiting for us to naturally think those things. The skill that you must learn is how to have your automatic thoughts and then consciously decide what is the better thought here? What is the real truth here? What is it that I might not emotionally want right now, but I know in the future I do want?
We have to get better at least telling ourselves the other side. My mentor calls it equal airtime. You’ve heard me talk about it in the podcast as equal airtime. If you are one of my No BS members and this is you, number one, all of the new urge content is going to come out in April. And we’re going to talk really deep about urges. But you have an entire learning pathway inside of No BS that deals single-handedly with urges. What to do and what to say and how to overcome them in real time. We talk about how to rewire that brain so that you can hear the desire, hear the want, hear the craving and choose differently for yourself. So I advise all my No BS members, make sure you go to the pathways pages once you finish the No BS weight loss course and take the urges’ pathway. It will help you unwind so much of the just, I’m just eating. I don’t know why, but my best laid plans and yet I’m giving in every night. If that sounds like you, that’s your path.
So when you’re sick, I just want you to notice that if you’re eating is different, how? And what is it that you’re telling yourself? Are some of these the thoughts that you actually need for when you’re not sick because that can be very useful? I found a few that even after all this time, 15 plus years of keeping 100 pounds off, I found a few I was like, “I’m going to try these, son of a bitch is out.” When I’m wanting to eat a skinny cow or some at nine o’clock at night after my husband’s gone to bed, and I’m just laying there bored as fuck and not able to go to bed yet. The last thing is I want you to ease back into things and don’t be in a rush. Now, this is important because if you’re anything like me, you have a lot of guilt when you’re down and out. I’m always sitting there thinking that there’s 1000 things I should be, could be doing, all kinds of stuff.
And so, when I sit and I think I don’t have time to be sick or everything’s going to fall apart, or people are relying on me, or I’m letting people down, or it’s not going to be fair to my husband, or my partner, my girlfriend, whoever’s going to suffer, they’re going to have to do everything. I want you to notice all of that thinking around being sick because when that’s in play, you’re going to be in a rush to get back. And if you’re anything like me and I’ve had to watch this this time, you want to go from being down and out to the second you feel like you have energy, you have high expectations that you should be able to just jump right back into life. You should go work out. You should put in a full day of work. You should do these things. I have really talked to myself this time about we are only going to listen to our body. This has been the thought that I have been using the whole time.
I am going to use this as an opportunity to teach myself number one, that it is okay to get help. That is a big one for me. I’m used to shouldering responsibility. I have been shouldering heavy responsibility since about the age of five years old as a caregiver. I’ve been the adult in the room all of my life. I run a company. It is not easy for me to sit back and ask for help. So I have decided that this time I was going to use this as an opportunity to figure out how to ask for help, and I was going to listen to my thoughts when I felt guilty, when I felt like a burden, when I felt bad about it and I was going to tell myself the new truth. And that has been powerful for me, just to listen to my story because when you don’t do that, you are likely to make your sickness last longer. You’re going to go back faster than you need to.
And most of us will set our weight loss back because we will overtax our body. And then we’ll feel bad again that we’re sick, and then we’ll probably try to comfort ourselves with food. So I want you to break the cycle. And then I want you to think about this, I’ve also been noticing not only have I been thinking about where can I get help? Where can I use this as an opportunity to lean on other people? I’ve also said I want to use this as an opportunity to tell myself that it’s okay, that the world does not fall apart without me. I don’t say that like a greedy ass bitch or I’m so important, but I have this thing that where I think I just hold so much together. Like I’m the one. And I don’t mean to say that like I’m better than everybody else, I just said it’s always been my thing. And so I have been just watching how the world keeps rotating. Catastrophes didn’t happen because I couldn’t clean the kitchen each day, and I couldn’t spend time with my son and all these other things.
I was like, I want to understand that everything is okay. And I want to tell myself the reason why things are okay is because how I have always showed up. It’s not because nobody needed me, people still needed me, but I’ve showed up in such a way that the people around me are better for it and they know what to do even when I’m sick. All right, so I hope this is helpful. It’s not like I will say, drink your water, get your sleep, do the things. But I hope these three points help you understand how they play with your weight loss. I promise all of you, weight loss is a mental game. When you get really good at playing the mental game of weight loss, getting the weight to come off is a whole lot simpler. I’ll talk to y’all next week.