In just this past week I have moved apartments- and started a brand new job (in a brand new field). It has been…. crazy! To say the least!
However, throughout all the craziness, I have made sure to commit even more fully to EATING, and eating well.
Because this life transition has nearly wiped out all of my funds, I am also trying to eat the most food and calories (and nutrients) for the smallest amount of money. And this switch has allowed for a dynamic mental shift as well. I have already written about the importance of switching to a mental place of nourishing instead of a place of restricting when feeding yourself. So my initial mental work was already in place, but this week, with little food around and little money to buy my usual fussy, organic, and very expensive groceries- I have been left with a very simple task:
To Feed Myself and to Nourish Myself.
A few things have been going on in the past weeks that have influenced my current state:
1) My body is becoming calmer, faster and more efficient. I have been committed to my badass eating for the past 7 + months, and I believe my metabolism is being repaired little by little. Meal by meal and day by day. In fact, I don’t need to eat a bedtime snack half of the time now, and instead a meal or snack from 2 or 3 hours before will be enough to let me fall asleep. Before, that was truly impossible.
2) The other factor, is that moving and starting a new job have kept me incredibly busy, nervous and excited, which has lead to longer than normal breaks between eating. For instance, I haven’t been thinking about food between lunch and dinner to that extent that I normally would. Of course, this nervous energy will pass and I won’t be this wired and excited once I settle in. But I think this has only worked in conjunction with my repairing metabolism. Also, in the past, I would have tried to leverage this into a good ol’ time of restriction: “Yesssss, I am not as hungry! I am distracted! AWESOME , MAYBLE I WILL LOSE WEIGHT AND FIT INTO A REGULAR SIZED BRA NOW”.
But this time, instead, every time I truly get hungry, (which was probably about 4 or 5 times a day) I will stop and EAT. I will eat to nourish. Not an ounce of restrictive mentality. Only nourishment. Calories and nutrients. But mostly calories.
Perfect stopping point? Don’t even care. I just stop when I don’t want to eat anymore.
And this is where the third part came into play:
3) Because these days I don’t have a lot of money for food (maybe I actually have a closer to normal amount now…. who knows, I spent a frighteningly large amount of money on food. It was probably part of my sickness…), in order to not feel any sort of lack or deprivation, I am focusing on adding and getting nourishment and calories. Potatoes. Butter. Cheese. Sourdough. Eggs. Full Fat Yogurt. Cream. Beans. Olive Oil. Quinoa. Obviously I still believe in meat, fruit and…. well, everything, but I am trying to focus on foods that are affordable, no-nonsense, dense and nourishing. And this has led to the complete opposite way of thinking about food compared to my mentality from my disordered days.
For instance, my expensive “thin cakes”, which are very thin rice cakes made into a sort of cracker, are a waste of money and precious eating time. I originally started buying them because they were light and I could eat a lot without filling up. I kept buying them because it became a habit and I sort of like them. Not any more. They are not enough calorie per dollar. Their addition to my diet was mostly just because of a restrictive mentality. I may end up buying them again, as they are right for some things, but for my purposes now… nah.
Now, it is all about eating. And eating enough and a lot. The guilt that I may have had in the past from a large meal is completely gone. It is a new era, and I trust every bit of food my body wants to eat, no matter how much, and no matter what. But this didn’t come without time amd commitment, and the journey has probably much further to go.
Another strange thing that has happened because of this is that it almost becomes “hard” to get enough. Because mentally I am not deprived and craving the act of overeating, so I don’t overeat or fixate on food. But then when I actually am hungry and eat: I need to EAT.
And even though my goal is not to focus or worry about weight (having success in that area as well), for those of yoyu who are interested, I have lost a little bit of weight by focusing on EATING. There has not been one time that I have left myself even the slightest bit hungry after any meal or snack in the past few weeks. And I have lost weight.
Also, as a side note… I got a hormone blood panel done, and my hormones are more balanced than they were. I think it is partly thanks to taking progesterone. But also…. I cannot pretend its not also partly because of no holds barred EATING.
BAD. ASS. EATING.
So if you are stuck in diet mode… keep commit to FUCK IT.
This is super inspiring, and uber BAD ASS! I’m not quite there yet, but I am realizing that foods are having less power over me than before. I spent 32 years living in a food prison and hell of my own creation, so this last year of eating and not binging/purging has been just totally… crazy awesome crazy. It’s been overwhelming. I started out being afraid of food and would only allow myself to be a perfect Paleo eater, then that spiralled into a sugar-junkie-eat-anything eater, and now I’m somewhere in food limbo but most importantly I have been eating and NOT purging, and just allowing myself to experience all the uncomfortable feelings… for the first time. It’s crazy, but crazy cool I guess.
And I love certain things for real – like fruit. Before I used to eat fruit for a “reason” but now I eat it because it tastes yummy. Who knew??? I’m like a reborn eater, but with baggage. Yep, baggage. I have a whole cargo truck filled with it.
Anyhow, thanks again for the inspiration. You are a BAD ASS and totally represent!
This is a VERY inspirational post. Thank you for writing this.
I love this. so much.
I think you got it perfectly with “Because mentally I am not deprived and craving the act of overeating, so I don’t overeat or fixate on food.” This has been my problem my whole life.
Unless I am talking to people (I love people), NOTHING can distract me from food or exercise. Still seeking those quiet at-home things that keep me from fridge raiding. The house was empty for nearly two weeks and though I’ve come leaps and bounds from guilty fridge raiding, there was a definite increase in food obsession. I’ve tried to get crafty, musical, journaling, watching t.v./reading books.
Nothing distracts. Sometimes I just try to cry through the craving of wanting to get up and open the fridge, make me face myself, and that sucks too.
I HATE MENTAL BOREDOM.
Did you ever have trouble with this? Is it just a part of the healing and get better? (I’m only 5 months in…)
This is a great post! Very inspiring. I used to be the same way, obsessed with calories. I used to feel proud of myself when I went to be feeling hungry. Success! Not anymore. I have finally let that stuff go. I can’t say that I never think about it. I do sometimes but it’s a back of the mind thought!
So keep up the good work. Hopefully more people can just let go and fuck it! Because really, life is way to short not too! Cheers!
Try to adopt a mainly whole-foods diet, with food from every group. Eat sprouted sourdough bread with butter and honey, eat eggs & bacon fried in coconut oil, eat hot chips you make yourself in the oven with plenty of butter and sea salt, eat strawberries and cream, eat fruit & yoghurt, eat oatmeal with unrefined cane sugar or another natural sweetener of your choice, eat roast chicken, eat pumpkin soup, basically anything that doesn’t contain additives/preservatives and isn’t EXTREMELY REFINED (such as white bread in plastic bag from a supermarket, crackers, shapes, potato chips, soda (if you are a die-hard soda fan and just cannot give it up, I recommend zevia. Google it, all natural soda. Not every flavour is to die for but they have quite a wide range of options. Basically, eat whatever you want as long as it is unprocessed/minimally processed. If you can find it on a supermarket shelf, it’s probably not good for you. Eat what you crave, don’t restrict, don’t freak out if you binge during the first few days/weeks. As long as you are giving it REAL food, your body knows what it is doing. It is just trying to recover from starvation mode. You might put on a little weight at the beginning, but let me reassure you this is a survival mechanism. Once your body feels it is being well-fed and no longer starved, it will let go of the excess weight and stabilise. It might not be supermodel or even fitness-model thin, or it might, depending on what your natural weight/body shape is, you will definitely not be fat. You just have to trust your body.