Food Freedom: Reconnecting Mind & Body.
Hello my loves!! As some of you may know from my IG stories, I recently decided that I was FED UP with overthinking eating and using all of my amazing energy on stressing about meals and food. One day last weekend, I was (again) feeling sick and exhausted, having tummy issues, and overall just getting down on myself. I realized that a good portion of that was coming from my thoughts and my mind, and immediately was like “EFF this. I am worth so much more than how I look, and I have so much to offer the world- I can't let myself be tied down by any lingering habits leftover from my eating disorders”. And so I decided my journey towards food freedom (aka FREEDOM in general) would begin that Monday when I felt better.
What I decided this meant for myself?:
No foods are "bad". No foods are better than others. I will eat and workout to FEEL good and to energize myself. I will be compassionate with myself and consciously override self negating thoughts. My number one priority is healing my relationship with food and my body. If this means eating cake to overcome a disordered thought pattern, instead of having a nutrient dense homemade energy bite , then so friggen be it.
I also decided this would be an amazing thing to share with everyone, so I took notes everyday. The notes are a bit random (as they were my scattered thoughts), but I think they are still cohesive and definitely insightful. I will also be doing a recap after 30 days of eveeeerrryyything, but I figured some people would find these interesting, relatable, and helpful too. I would love to hear your thoughts as well as chat with you, so feel free to leave comments below or message me with what you think! Here we go.
- Ate breakfast after waking up and walking rather than putting off eating breakfast. If I am hungry I will eat in the morning, though I do workouts fasted as I am more efficient that way.
- Ate lunch even though I initially didn’t want to since I had “just eaten a snack” and wanted to wait. I had Panera because that was the closest place to where I was doing work (salad, baguette, and soup) and ate until I was satisfied. I felt very tired after, and wondered whether this was from the meal or not enough sleep the night before. I usually feel energized and ready to go after lunch, so it could be because it was on the "heavier" side. After yoga I had a big rice bowl for dinner and saved room for dessert. While making dinner I saw sugar cookies on the counter and had a bite cause I wanted one. Didn’t feel the need to finish it, even though I put it in my desert bowl, which was apples, pb, coconut butter, and pretzels. Simply noticing a cue of “I want that” and allowing it to happen is enough!
- As I’m in the grocery store and realize I will allow myself to buy anything I want, I think to myself “well this is fun.” I still ended up buying what I usually buy which was interesting, though I did get a coffee which I had been avoiding for months (half decaf though because for my sanity I know I don’t want caffeine).
- It’s funny because I am realizing how often I really do genuinely crave veggies and fruit. It’s funnier because I am starting to recognize when I am absolutely forcing it for the sake of having veggies and fruit.
- I don’t hold back on a snack. Even though I had just eaten lunch, I had a LARGE snack. I took a mental note to eat coconut butter more mindfully as it is very filling for me.
- Once I was was done with the coconut butter, I felt full-yes-but not lethargic. I had a few moments where I almost got upset with myself for feeling full tbh, but kept going about my day and then forgot about it.
- I was hungry a few hours later, and rather than wait to eat to “keep the window of hours between eating longer,” I snacked because I wanted to. I also did not go to the gym because I simply didn’t feel like it nor did I feel the need to.
- On my way home, I realized I wanted wine. Even though it was Tuesday, I bought and drank wine. Woah. I also had a burrito AND an ice cream bar without feeling overly full. I did make another mental note to eat the ice cream more mindfully (really taste it and slowly eat it).
- *Key takeaway of this day: Practicing slow, mindful bites and eating is just that- practice. You will still sometimes realize you only remember a few bites of a meal. That is okay. Work on it. Be gentle with yourself
- Ate “light: all day as I was kinda in a good mood and trying to get stuff done, and didn’t realize how hungry I was. I grabbed an apple and nuts on the way to the little ones basketball game, thinking this would be enough. When I was still hungry and craving chocolate, I realized I had a big piece of chocolate in my car. But, because it was Valentines day, I tried not to eat the chocolate. I had all the snacks in my snack bag: dates stuffed with pb, more nuts, etc…only to STILL end up eating the chocolate. So moral of that bit of the story: just eat what you damn want when you want it.
- After I finished all the snacks, I noticed myself getting really frustrated with myself about it, and about being full (not even TOO full-just pretty satiated). For the rest of the 40 min car ride, I had to practice overriding those thoughts and telling myself I was in control and who the eff cares if seemed like “too much sugar”. I did pretty well.
- After a big pasta dinner with Lynds for Valentines day, I legit had 8 chocolates, then a fun dip, and then some pretzels. It was interesting because I wasn’t SUPER full (which showed me just how much I should be eating in a day really lol), but I also wasn’t hungry anymore. Something that used to be happen to me a lot when I would restrict is that I would binge-I could never have “just one” chocolate for example. This didn’t feel quite like that, but on the verge of it. I learned from it though, went about my night, and didn’t get mad at myself, making it far less likely to happen again!
- Not much to note today besides having coffee which is out of the ordinary for me, as it does kinda play with my hunger for some reason, and make it hard to tell when I’m hungry. I have been allowing myself to have it because I do love coffee- the taste, culture etc- but I can only have it for a day or so in a row before it starts hurting my tummy and giving me anxiety. My body will kick in and alert me when this happens, so I just practice listening to that. Coffee seems to slow down my digestion and cause some bloating for me-and ain't nobody got time for that.
- Also today, I bought some snacks and allowed myself to BUY pretzels (a snack I once deemed unhealthy for whatever reason even though I love them). Booya- pretzels&pb 4 lyfe.
- My takeaway from these days are: I think SO much less about food when I think so much less about what and when I am eating. With this food freedom, I have given myself mental freedom and freed up so much space in my head and time and energy towards other things. Because there is no “stress” surrounding another meal, and because I don’t always leave myself a liiiiittle hungry, I can focus on other things. This leads me to eating less and not always thinking about eating.
- My first day doing an intense workout while practicing intuitive eating, and I realized JUST how much I need to eat on these days. Ended up kind of picking at pretzels and eating a lot of chocolate (def not complaining) as I begin getting a feel for realistically how big my meals have to be. I also realize a smoothie is not a meal, because I always tend to be hungry within an hour of drinking one.
- Today, one other thing I noted, is just how much I tend to take other people’s hunger into consideration (so unnecessarily) when gaging my own. EVERY body is different. If you are very hungry then eat. That is that. If someone is eating a salad but you want pizza, get the pizza. I realized how often I play games with myself and compare what I am eating and how much I am eating to others, and we cannot let that happen.
- I realized that when I deem my lunch “big,” I automatically tell myself dinner will be something light. Because I had been eating all day, I ordered a boring salad while Lynds got a veggie burger and sweet potato fries, only to realize I could easily have downed the same. I will be better at making decisions on what I want in the moment and not due to what else I have or haven’t eaten that day, but due to what my body is telling me it wants.
- Tonight I also had a ton more chocolate, then coconut butter, then a muffin, though I wasn’t particularly starving but was craving food, and came to a huge realization: I am bored with my eating. In the past, I had “safe” meals and foods, and so I always tend to buy the same exact foods and eat the same exact thing all of the time. I then was ending up eating too many sweets to compensate, thinking that's what I was craving. I once would not allow myself chocolate and desert, so my brain, when bored with food, automatically thought thats what I should be having.
- I did not get mad at myself for eating, even though I may have emotionally ate , and I am so excited that I realized its time to switch up my meals
Okay guys, WHEW. There we have it. My notes from week 1. Like I said, I would LOVE to chat with YOU all about this, or help answer any questions. My Coaching is not limited to eating and body image, though I specialize in this as I have been through it all and am finally getting a grasp on it for myself.
Also just know that YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL/HANDSOME/AMAZING/PERFECT JUST AS YOU ARE. Our purpose on this planet was not to be a certain pant size (well, I haven’t talked to the Universe on this one, but I’m preeeeettty certain lol). Happiness is the goal. Growth is the goal. BEING….. is the goal.
Love you all!