So you binged, now what?

Yes folks, it happened. I had a feeling it would happen sooner or later, and I’m glad it happened sooner so I can learn from it and move on. I went on a super binge yesterday evening, and now I am faced with the after effects – bloating, sluggishness, and bloating. This time around, instead of beating myself up about it, I’m trying to learn from it and as I analyze what happened and how to get over it, you all get to come along for the ride. Lucky you!!

What To Do After A Binge:

Step 1) Get over it. Seriously, forgive yourself and move on. It’s going to happen eventually – even the most rigid dieters have an incident where they just flip their lids and lose it over some fast food or some ice cream. Get back on track as soon as you can and…

Step 2) …Try to figure out WHY you binged. You didn’t just binge for no reason at all – there’s always a reason. Have you been eating too little? Did something upset you earlier in the day? Are you getting enough sleep?  These are just some of the things that can cause a person to face plant into a pan of  (insert favorite baked item here). Simply identifying the reason for your binge can take away a lot of the shame.

Step 3) Drink a lot of water the next day. You’ve got alot “stuff” in your system and you need to flush it out.

Step 4) Go for a walk. Or a run. Or go to the gym. For heaven’s sake just do something that will get you moving again.

Step 5) Get back to your healthy eating habits again, and even though you will be tempted to eat only apples the next day, don’t do that. Eat your healthy food and eat it in reasonable amounts because  restricting too much is how you got into this boat in the first place (Self, I’m looking at you!).

Step 6) Learn from this experience, because at some point, it will happen again. Do you hear me? IT WILL HAPPEN AGAIN. Maybe not soon, but eventually. Hopefully next time you can stop it before it gets out of hand and that’s the point of learnin’, folks, so we don’t let history repeat itself. Look for the warning signs (see Step 2) and then take action – call your accountability partner, get outside and move, just do something so that the binge won’t kill the spirit of success you have inside you.

Step 7) Protect your Spirit of Success like a mother bear. You know that good feeling you get when you’ve followed your plan well (notice, I didn’t say perfectly)? Hold onto the feeling. Keep it in the front of your mind and remember how awful it feels to NOT feel good.


Okay, to be honest, I wrote these steps for myself as well as for anyone else who needs them because last night’s binge was a doozy. And since I’m in full confession mode here, my binge was the result of  too little sleep, too little calories during the day, and stress at work – all things that separately I can handle, but piled on top of each other can bring a hurricane of doom onto my head. Lesson learned. I will strive to do better because taking care of myself is a lot easier to deal with than the resulting coma after a super binge, ya know what I mean?

Have any other steps to add to my Post Binge List? What’s your personal downfall into binge hell? What causes you to flip your lid?

18 thoughts on “So you binged, now what?

  1. My downfall trigger seems to usually be anxiety. But sometimes it is ‘free food.’ Like cookies in the breakroom at work, or a potluck at church. I try to stay away from the after church cookies. Because with cookies, I am NEVER satisfied. I think sometimes I might keep eating them until I explode. Then I would wait 10 minutes for the exploded spot to heal over and I would eat some more.

  2. One of my binge danger zones is games night every Thursday. People bring food. Junk food. And I bring some too. And then I eat everything. This week I made merigues with cream and raspberries on top and they were lovely. And I had one when I took them out of the oven (the chef has to check, right?) and then two after dinner for dessert and then three more at supper – I think it was three. At least three – plus food other people had brought. That sixth merigue didn’t go down easy, I was feeling really nauseous. And I ate it anyway. And I was up at 2 am losing it again. My body decided to reject the whole supper experience and I felt wretched for about 12 hours.
    Time to stop giving myself permission to binge.

  3. hey. I think bingeing has only one cause. And it isn’t eating insufficient calories beforehand. That does bring on what I describe as a “pig out”, lol, but not a BINGE. Not shoving everything down your throat until your stomach will physically hold no more. Not driving continuously to different fast food joints or food stores (because you are too ashamed to purchase such a quantity from one store alone). No, a binge is brought on by the same thing every time.
    Something is wrong with our food.

  4. Great post! I totally agree that the feeling of ‘staying on track’ is the most important thing, far more important than the calories in any one episode of all-bets-are-off overindulgence. No one is going to be perfect all the time! Even naturally thin folks with no eating issues sometimes eat WAY too much, but they don’t beat themselves up over it. Taking a look at triggers and learning to plan around them is excellent advice.

    Last week a houseguest left a huge bag of Costco kettlecorn into our cupboard, and I can tell you, that is the most ADDICTIVE substance on earth. Not proud of what I did to that bag, but I just said oh well, exercised a little extra, and LET IT GO.

  5. For me, recently, it was moving several states away and then having the landlord of the new home we’d already rented tell me at 9:30pm that she changed her mind as my five year old and dog were running around the house and my husband was several hours away still. After the month long binge of sugar and delish carbohydrates – today I’m back at it. Working out and detoxing from the sugar fest…lol… It happens to us all. Get back up, and figure out the trigger, and a new thing to do the next time that happens. You can do it!!

  6. Not planning meals and not setting aside time for preparation.
    Arguments with family members.
    Extreme flavors of sweet to salty to sweet.
    Avoiding things I have to do.
    I’ll have it all now because I’m about to go on a diet and can’t have it ever ever again.
    Feelings of failing as a mom, wife, friend.

  7. As always, a great post and very helpful! Thank you! I think one of my binge triggers is feeling deprived. If I go to a dinner party and everyone has the yummy, gooey, super delicious dessert and I can’t, it sets the binge cycle in motion. I feel deprived and then I feel sorry for myself because I can’t eat like “everyone else” and then I think I “deserve” something sweet and then I’m off on a full-blown binge. Lately, when I feel myself start the binge cycle, I find something on my plan that feels like a treat to me. I even allow myself a little bit more of that food item and somehow it helps me feel less deprived and I haven’t gone completely off plan. But you are so right: Binges happen. For me, recognizing that and preparing for it with a back-up plan seems to help.

    1. (Now, how can anyone with the happy name of “Sunny Gold” have any problems? 🙂

      I love the title of that book (Food: the good girls’ drug). I’ve often said of the religion I’ve joined where we don’t drink coffee, tea, alcohol, nor have tobacco products, “Sugar, the last Mormon vice.” We are so high on desserts, green jello, and funeral potatoes.

  8. It’s so true about the forgiving part! We sometimes get so wrapped up in what we did wrong, that we forget to do what will get us back on track!! Great post!

  9. This is great advice. We know exactly what to do but putting it into practice isn’t always so easy.

    Almost anything can set me off on a binge. I try to eat my emotions instead of expressing them. When I feel myself turning to food when I’m not really hungry I try to remember that food isn’t going to make the stress (or whatever emotion I’m feeling) go away, I’m just trying to escape in into a food coma but will eventually have to come out of it and deal with the consequences.

    I hope the hurricane winds have settled down to a calming breeze. Peace out!

  10. I also want to thank you so much for all your kind words and support. I never in a million years thought anyone would think I was inspiring. I have faith you will do it too. Keep the faith!

  11. I love this post! for me, the day after a binge is when I feel most vulnerable to binge again, probably because I feel awful and am not doing your 7 awesome steps. I think realizing it will happen again but you can always stop yourself mid-way through a binge, no matter how big or small, is key. isn’t this what normal people do — eat 10 cookies, realize it didn’t feel that good, stop and move on?

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