Thursday, June 21, 2007

No Longer Jealous but Snacky

Another day, Day 3 (but who's counting, right?) smoke-free, and I'm not terribly pissed off about it because Chantix (Day 15 now) is doing its thing. I have had some strong urges, almost cravings, here and there, so it's still not exactly like falling off a log, but it beats the agony of every other attempt by a long shot. Last night when I thought I was going to go crazy, I went and bought some awesome drapes like I'd been needing to do ever since the move. They were $60 at Target for the 2 panels plus about $3 for the cheapo curtain rod thingy (because I'm far to cheap for the next step up at $16+), but they are lined and dark and thick enough to do a great job of blocking the insane morning sun. I behaved and didn't buy half the other stuff I wanted to buy, and of course didn't smoke, so it was a fairly productive diversion. That said, this bed-in-a-bag really would look great with those new drapes...

I noticed a funny thing while driving yesterday. Every other time I have quit smoking, whenever I saw someone else driving and enjoying a cigarette (at least it looked enjoyable to me), I would get kind of jealous of them because they were "allowed" to smoke because they weren't doing the quitting thing, and I was being "denied" my pleasure. It used to kind of piss me off. It's nutty, I know. I ain't judging my mind, I'm just telling you what was in there. In any case, yesterday at a stop light the guy next to me was smoking, and instead of thinking "lucky him!," I thought "wow, I wish I could tell him about Chantix." Same thing happened when I saw another smoker standing outside when I was turning in towards home. I kept quiet, but what a strange shift in thinking. I really didn't expect that.

While the jealousy has left, feeling snacky hasn't. In our home, "snacky" means a few different things, but in this case I just mean that I feel like eating anything that's not bolted down or rotting. Considering that reason/justification #87 for me to keep smoking or keep starting again after quitting was weight gain (yes, again, I know it's nonsense when comparing risks to health - I didn't say my mind makes any damn sense), my "anything snacky goes as long as I'm not smoking" mentality needs to be kept in check. I'm about as far away from the poster child for healthy eating and regular exercise as you can get, but I still don't want to trade one bad habit for making the other already not great habit any worse. I'm not even overweight, but I know that I am very capable of going there, and then I'd have another damn battle.

Truth is, surprisingly, some weight gain from quitting smoking is likely anyway, even aside from diet just because of how smoking increases metabolism and suppresses hunger - a heavy smoker can burn 200 calories a day by smoking (!) according to this article. I'd heard that before, but I didn't know that there are even more factors in play related to smoking cessation weight gain, ranging from lung function to enzymes detailed in this article I ran across. All this before the snacky feeling even sets in and takes over.

And so, on another trip to a different store last night, I bought some celery. I like celery. Especially if Tom cuts it up for me (such a good guy). I'll be drinking even more water than usual (I happen to love water and drink little else aside from coffee) because it helps with smoking urges, "bad snack choice" urges, and I like to imagine that I'm washing away all the evil toxins (not sure if I actually believe it, but it's a nicer image than black lungs and toxins getting all my other parts, too). I don't intend to really try eating any less right now or worry too much about gaining 5-10 pounds, but I will attempt to put better stuff in my feed bag than fast food and pizza. If Tom and I can get back to our little 30 minute walks, that would probably be a decent start, too. There are so many great articles online about preventing additional weight gain when quitting smoking along with the ones linked above.


  1. Great to hear you're doing well! I stopped by this morning and didn't see a new post, so I was contemplating writing and seeing why you haven't posted. :)

    I know exactly how you felt when you quit before and would drive and see other people smoke and get super jealous. I would get strong cravings for cigarettes then, too. I have a feeling it'll be different this time. :)

    Hey, I hope you keep strong. We'll kick this habit once and for all this time.

  2. Thank you for dropping by, Stan! Hey, looking over at your blog, it sounds like you are making the leap today. Best of luck to you!


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