So, I’m almost three weeks into expanding my freedom quest into my food and fitness journey, and I have some thoughts.
First, I’m not gonna pretend I’m fully on board with everything these ladies say, especially as it relates to weight loss, size, etc-FOR ME. I know that for some, just taking those factors out of the equation entirely would be incredibly freeing, but for me, and my journey, it just doesn’t sit right. I wouldn’t be being honest or true to myself in trying to convince myself those things don’t matter for me.
I lived most of my twenties in a body that didn’t feel like mine, eating whatever I wanted whenever I wanted, and being extremely unhealthy but not in bondage to food. I can honestly say I didn’t binge, and rarely actually overate. When I “dieted” it wasn’t terribly restrictive, it was just being intentional and aware of what I was eating and making wiser choices. I never even actually counted calories until after Lexi was born and someone suggested I wasn’t eating enough to fuel all my exercise. BUT- I have a metabolic disorder and if I am not mindful, if I just do what comes “naturally”, I will set myself back, at least temporarily. I think, or at least hope, part of Intuitive Eating involves making wise choices based on how different foods and exercise make you feel-I’m not done with the book yet, and the parts I’ve worked through so far have been less applicable to me because they are a lot about diet mentality and restrictive eating and stuff that has (mostly) not been part of my life. I am still learning and applying things, though, particularly where I have a natural tendency to slip into all-or-nothing thinking.
Here are some changes I’ve noticed in myself since I’ve really been making the effort to eat what I want to and not just for performance and efficiency and a specific set of nutrition goals:
- I’m eating more actual food, and I don’t want protein shakes. I love my shakes, but I think I drank so many for so long (seriously, like 18 most of 1-3 shakes a day!) I got burnt out. Instead of a shake before my workout, I’m eating a handful of trail mix. Instead of a smoothie as my breakfast. I’m having eggs, with vegetables, or maybe a bit of brown rice in them.
- I’m eating sandwiches-bread is the one food I have really stayed away from for the past five years, almost exclusively, because it doesn’t generally have a lot of nutritional benefit, and I find the calories are useful elsewhere. However, I’m really on a kick of a turkey/avocado/cheddar melt on Health Nut Bread right now, and I’m riding that wave.
- I definitely have more energy. I’m not sure if this is totally about the food, but at the very least I’m less stressed (and therefore drained) about how much I’m eating.
- Weight is not piling on, nor is it yet magically falling off-which is not a surprise, but worth noting. When I made this change, I did not weigh myself, so I don’t really have a “starting mark”, and I had some hormonal kerfuffles the latter part of this spring, so I haven’t really recorded any data in that vein since early/mid May. I’m probably not going to record weight/measurements more than once a week, and possibly even less often, especially now, early in the process of changing how I manage my food intake.
- I’m really uncomfortable when there is talk of diets that are restrictive. I have a few friends who are newly on the primal/paleo/Keto train in different areas of my life, and while I am super happy for them-and learned SO much about my body and what it thrives on in that season of my life, I get really stressed out when I see it discussed, and I start to judge myself, second guess myself, and wonder if they are judging me. All that is the opposite of the goal. My goal right low with food is to eat WELL and make my body happy-and ENJOY everything o eat. With that in mind, I just don’t have resources for all the rules of that way of eating. Hearing about it is an emotional stumbling block for me.
- I’m not sure how much of this is related to the IE, so it’ll probably be a separate post, but my exercise life is changing. So excited about this!
- I’m using a physical notebook for my food and exercise journal, and it’s not number crunching based, just recording what I’m eating, doing, and feeling. So far so good!