Quitting Smoking and Weight Gain

Smoke Free 8 days!

Today I would like to talk about weight gain since I quit smoking November 19, 2007 and relapsed, (had 7 cigs) New Years Day. My total weight gain in seven weeks has been a ton! When I quit smoking I weighed 142 lbs. I am 5’8″ so that wasn’t too bad. I still wore a size 8 or 10, mostly because of my belly. Menopause changes a body. I have been very lucky, up until I was 48 years old, I have been a size 8, never had to diet or exercise. So I have been very spoiled all my life. Now the bad news…I weigh 158 lbs. Ugggh! I can hardly look at that number. I have gained 16 lbs, a little over 2 lbs. a week. I have joined a gym but, with the holidays, have not been able to go regularly. I love walking Sonny but, the cold weather has slowed that down. At work I do nothing but sit at my desk all day. It’s not like I am chained to it, I could get up and run up and down five flights of stairs if I wanted to but, who would really WANT to do that? Okay, enough of the BUTS! Enough of the I CAN”T MAKE TIME! Enough of the EXCUSES! It’s time to get off my arse and get moving!

My eating habits have always been pretty good:

a.) Never eat after 7:00 p.m.
b.) Always leave the last bite on the plate, (or give it to Sonny).
c.) Control my portions by thinking of the size of the palm of hand and not put more than that.

The down side of my eating has been getting enough fruits and vegetables. I have changed that since I quit smoking, now I have at least two fruits a day. I have also added Lifesaver Mints, Pretzels, Werthers, and Peppermints to my diet also. The food, (if you want to call it that), that I have added, has helped me with the “habit” of reaching for something to put in my mouth. So far it has been working and highly recommend all of them.

Bottom line on weight gain. I read once that a person that quits smoking would have to gain 100 lbs. to do the same damage to their body that smoking does. Well, 16 lbs is nothing and I can lose that, but right now I am not going to “diet”, or freak out about it. I am going to the Goodwill and buying size 12 pants/jeans for $3.00 and will wear those until this passes. Then I will “re-gift” them to Goodwill for the next lady that needs a larger size, (not that a 12 is all that large by any means), while she is quitting smoking. Another bonus about weight gain, you should return to your pre-quitting weight by 6 months to 1 year after quitting.

So, I am going to hang in there and keep plugging along one day at a time, and ask my Higher Power to keep me smoke free today, and thank Him tonight for the Grace He gave me so I would not smoke. For that I am truly grateful.


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4 Responses to “Quitting Smoking and Weight Gain”

  1. Narnie Says:

    Ok, I’m desperately trying to remember what I was told about this but it was something along these lines…

    Your body is controlled by your brain. Your brain is kicking walls because it wants to smoke and you’re not letting it. So it looks for other ways to get to you and you mentally do other things to distract it, like eating. The thing is, the actual chemical process your body is going through is amazing! Oxygen is purer into your brain and your nerve endings are becoming more alert. These factors are energising endorphins in you which your brain is unused to. It feels like hunger but it is actually your body waking up. So the best thing to do is get your body used to all this influx of oxygen and your nerve endings twitching in the right way by walking.

    Ok, so that was the theory and I was so sceptical but whenever I got a crave to eat or smoke I would walk out my door and walk – even if it was just around the garden (haha!) and it worked. It cleared my head, regulated my breathing and made me thirsty rather than hungry – water is so important when giving up and I was amazed that I wasn’t supposed to take in any caffeine. I don’t know whether it will help you but it was my saviour as I actually lost the bronchitis that I had suffered with for a year and I also lost nearly a stone!

    Thanks so much for visiting my site … if you ever need to scream about a crave please feel free to do it in my direction 🙂

  2. emctara57 Says:

    Oh wow! Thanks for the great info. That makes sense. I have been doing the water and low caffeine thing. Walking out the door sounds great, even if it only delays the eating, I should do that first, then go for the food.

    The thing about oxygen makes sense too. At the gym, I tried a Pilates class and a Yoga class, both of them made me sick. Like motion sickness, nausiated and dizzy. I attributed it to all the Oxygen going to my brain with some of those moves and my brain wasn’t used to it. I’m going to blog about this later. It quite a mystery. I asked the Yoga instructor about it and she said don’t eat two hours before class. I didn’t eat before class, but I did drink a lot of water as I do every day. Still a mystery!

  3. tina Says:

    Hi! I have a question regarding oxygen going to the brain. This is day 22 of quitting smoking for me. I’ve been having horrible headaches – I probably only think they’re horrible because I have never gotten headaches regularly before. They started right when I quit (~3 weeks ago) and are getting progressively worse. It feels like there’s a lot of pressure in my head, and is also kind of tingly around the base of my head/neck, which is why I’m wondering about what this oxygen surge is really all about.

    I’m attributing the headaches to quitting smoking, but is this common or should I be more concerned that it’s something else?? Also, how long does this last and should it have gotten better by now?

    By the way, I am female, 23 years old, healthy/in shape, vegetarian, never drink alcohol or caffeine, regular running and yoga practice. I’m also very stressed due to a heavy course load at school and a new part-time job. maybe all or none of that is related to the headaches. Any help would be very much appreciated!!!


  4. scrappingal Says:

    Hi Tina,

    Congrats on 22 days! I would recommend you contact your doctor. I am not a doctor and wouldn’t begin to advise you on this. All I have is my own experience to share and I didn’t experience headaches when I quit. Sorry. You sound very concerned so call right away. Take care and good luck!


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