Quote of the Day: “You can’t live a full life on an empty stomach.”
A few weeks ago, I wrote about my relationship with exercise and my “fitness journey” or whatever you want to call it, so I thought it would be fitting to write about my relationship with food. Let’s just jump right into it.
My Relationship with Food:
Looking back at just the past 5 years of my life, I’m realizing that my relationship with food has changed so much. I’ve literally been all over the “eating spectrum”, from restrictive, to healthy, to not giving two fricks.
When I was a senior in high school, I became more conscious about what I was putting in my body. I started eating salads for lunch every single day at school and basically never ate any sweets. I noticed how good I felt when I was eating this clean and how my body was changing and for awhile it stayed like this. The funniest thing about this time in my life is that I NEVER craved sugar. You’ll find out why I thought it was funny later on.
A few months later, I became almost obsessed with “eating clean” or “dieting”. I basically tried every diet you can think of: Juice Cleanse (fail), 21 Day Fix (fail), South Beach diet (fail), vegan (fail)… I think you get the idea. I tried all these different diets because I thought they would help me attain my “ideal body” whatever that was at the time, but I also saw how these diets changed other people’s bodies and thought that of course if I did them, I too would look great. I was genuinely so naive.
Once I entered college, I was determined to continue my “clean” eating. I really wanted to go home for Winter Break and be someone who lost the freshmen-15, rather than gained it. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t know that dining halls were going to filled with temptations. From mac n’ cheese, to carbonara, to pizza, to stir fry, to unlimited Ben & Jerry’s pints… it was all so easily accessible to the point where it felt impossible to stay away. I did my best to opt for healthier choices, but come dinner time, game over. I CRAVED ice cream and sweets. It was actually out of control. Fortunately, I didn’t gain that much weight.
Sophomore and junior year of college, I was living in my own apartment, so I was able to cook my own meals. Beginning of sophomore year, I made this completely impulsive decision to go VEGETARIAN. Why you ask? I have no clue if it was to prove other people wrong (I was the BIGGEST carnivore), if it was another one of my “diets”, or if I just wanted to challenge myself. No matter what the reason, I was forced to change how I ate (well, not completely). My dinners looked a lot like this: brown rice, broccoli, and a fried egg… actually, almost ever night looked like that. Occasionally, I would throw in some tofu or I would make fresh springs rolls if I was feeling really CRAZY. Honestly, I felt really light, but about a year into it, I started feeling really exhausted. Later, I found out I was anemic… thank you vegetarianism.
Today, I am 100% a carnivore. I love meat and honestly have no clue if I will ever be able to be vegetarian again, despite loving the idea of being plant-based. I would say today, I do not have the healthiest relationship with food. I pig out like CRAZY, not that that’s a problem. But it’s a problem when I feel absolutely DISGUSTED with myself and look at myself in the mirror and just feel so FAT and UGLY. This summer was especially bad for me. I started eating A LOT of ice cream, like an absurd amount, and just ate like shit in general. I think my mentality was that I saw my boyfriend eat a lot and stay lean, so I thought that I too could eat the same amount and not gain weight…I WAS COMPLETELY WRONG. I cannot eat the same as a 6’2″ 165 lb. boy and I sure as hell shouldn’t be.
In addition to that, I am constantly struggling with a strong addiction. A sugar addiction is a real thing people. I crave it. I swear, I eat a piece of chocolate (thanks to Valentine’s Day) in the morning and about 3+ other pieces throughout the day. I crave sweet drinks and I crave ice cream. Sugar is ruining my life… slightly dramatic. But seriously, I can see how it is affecting my skin (so pimply), my performance in the gym, and my body (hello muffin-top). I know I shouldn’t obsess over this, but I do and it’s honestly stressful as hell. I 100% do not want to crave sugar. I want to crave salads… sometimes I do.
I guess I’m still struggling with my relationship with food. I haven’t quite figured out how to have a healthy relationship with it. I feel stress when I know I’m about to eat an unhealthy or big meal. I feel stressed after I eat that meal and feel as though I need to go spend a whole day at the gym. Also, when I eat like shit, I remember every “fat” comment someone has ever said to me and I feel disgusted with myself. I need to realize that it’s okay to not eat clean 100% of the time and that everything is fine in moderation (cliche, but true). Having a healthy relationship with food is a learning experience just like everything else.
Let’s promise each other to start eating healthier, without stressing out about it. Let’s eat the chocolate, but let’s not go overboard. Let’s have a healthy relationship with food!