Today is Smoke-free Day 107, and I've gained.
First, the good news about what I've gained.
I've gained the ability to laugh without coughing and the ability to wake up without feeling just kind of "yucky" like I'd felt for so long yet didn't really notice it until in comparison once I'd quit smoking. I've gained the joy of feeling like I smell "fresh" instead of smoky and feeling like I can do darn near anything I set my mind to doing if I've accomplished this not smoking thing. I've gained hopefully many more days or years tacked onto the end of my life and the feeling of being more at ease because quitting smoking no longer looms in front of me as this big, bad, terrible monster that I'll have to face in time before the Big C or something else Very Bad "gets" me. I've faced it (thankfully with the help of Chantix), it wasn't as terrible as past battles, and now it's done other than maintaining my quit, which is always easier than having to quit again from scratch. Yes, I've gained much. All that and more.
Now for the not as good news about what I've gained.
It's really kind of snuck up on me, but I have started to gain just a bit of weight since quitting smoking or since quitting the Chantix. Or both. Not sure.
I do know that back on Day 34 I was not yet gaining any weight, though I had gained just a little before quitting (which I forgot until I just read it, and now I feel a little better). Looking back at old posts, I was also developing the snack habit early in my quit, but was at least trying to go for the celery (had to giggle when I read it because that's the last celery I've seen since). Historically, I'd always been thin, and then I hit 30, was in the middle of the over a year not smoking stint, gained about 28 pounds (very noticeable on my 5'2" frame), started smoking again, lost about 18 pounds, went along my merry way and continued to use smoking, in part as one of a million reasons, to maintain a very reasonable weight (sadly, but truly, smoking itself does, indeed, burn calories <-- great article) for someone as small as I am. Great plan except for what smoking was costing me in exchange - not worth it, no matter what bullshit I tell myself (and I have been known tell myself plenty of goofy stuff).
So, I'll be continuing the twice a day 20 minute mile walking that I've been enjoying so very much and that I'm sure is helping to keep the situation (and my tushy) from really ballooning, and I'll also be paying a little more attention to the mindless snacking where smoking used to be. Yes, I do that, too. I've started adding little bits of jogging in small bursts during my walking sometimes, but I'm having some ankle issues from an old sprain, so I'll also be making a little visit to peek at the fitness center in our apartment complex as another option.
I hereby promise myself that whenever I think for a second about any pound I've gained as a non-smoker, I'll equal it with one of the many, many benefits I've gained and remind myself that I've made the right decision because much of the damage from smoking isn't as reversible as a pound or four is (within reason, of course). Then I'll put down the cookie and grab a carrot, put down the remote and maybe take a walk, perhaps even peek at the fitness center again (or go inside if I'm feeling bold), or at the very least remind myself to not *ever* again think of smoking as a solution to a problem because it just isn't one and only creates more problems, some of which just ain't fixable once the damage is done.