There’s no easy or light way to say this, so I’m just going to say it. I have an unhealthy relationship with food. More than anything, I want to get back to the type of person that I was when I started this blog. Hands down, I was healthier. I never would have thought that over the years of having a blog that I would become less healthy, but I did.
When I started blogging, I didn’t know what a macro was. I was cautious of what I was eating and reading labels, but I didn’t have a care in the world about how much protein, carbs, and fat I was consuming in a day. I was eating meals that I wanted and that my body wanted, and I was care-free with my workouts. I didn’t care about calorie burn, or HIIT, or how many reps I was hitting, or lifting heavy. I was going to the gym when I could, and doing workouts that I wanted to do.
Somewhere along the line I was introduced to counting macros, and in the beginning, I absolutely loved it. I was seeing results, and that made me happy. Looking back, I noticed that when I hit plateaus is when I began having an unhealthy relationship with food. I wasn’t seeing results so I said “screw this; I’ll eat over my macros since what I’ve been given clearly isn’t working.”
I’ve tried having a macro coaches for the sole purpose of accountability, but my determination just wasn’t there, because again, I wanted to eat more than they told me to. So, I would stop checking in, wasting valuable money. It went on and on. I would try tracking myself. I’d have success for weeks, and then I’d stop. When I think about it full swing, I realize that counting macros is no longer for me. It makes me feel confined. Being told how many grams of protein, carbs, and fat I can consume in a day is constricting, stressful, and the root of MY unhealthy relationship with food. Macros works wonderfully for some, but for me, it stopped working.
Having to track my meals in an app every day to calculate where I was at and what I could eat the rest of the day wasn’t necessarily stressful, but it was an annoying burden. The last few months I would track my main meals throughout the work day, but by evening, I wouldn’t open the app, and guess what, I survived. My issue would arise at night, when I would crave sweets. I wouldn’t binge, but I would definitely overeat just to feel a certain way. Maybe I binged? I really don’t understand the fine line between overeating and binging, but what I do know is that I had a problem. I would be fine for weeks, but once I had one night of overeating, it seemed to continue each night until I broke the chain. I’d have several successful days, and then I would overeat at night again.
I’ve been frustrated with my body composition and my weight probably since February, and while I was working incredibly hard in the gym, I was gaining weight and feeling less confident. I knew it was my eating that was getting in the way. I am never going to see the progress that I want with my health if I continue down this path.
Two weeks ago I read this article by Arielle Calderon of Buzzfeed about how quitting sugar for 30 days affected her. She’s just a normal girl on a weight loss journey, so she was easy to relate to. Looking at what she ate had me sitting at my desk saying, “I want to eat those meals too!” I then got engrossed in her Instagram page, and was making lists of her meals that I wanted to recreate. The old me would have never done so because of tracking macros, but I sat at my desk thinking to myself that I’d feel more fulfilled eating these meals and snacks.
For the past year I’ve told myself that I just want to eat like a normal person. I want to eat how I used to. I want to be able to have a bagel with peanut butter if that’s what I’m craving. I want to go back to Martone’s in Essex Jct., VT where I lived for 6 years and order their cheese and roast beef sub and eat it without worrying about how many carbs are in it. That sub was a staple in my childhood. MARTONESSSS. Laura, you know what I’m talking about!
I want to enjoy one of my Mom’s home cooked meals and not worry about what the macros are. I want to actually make a real recipe and not weigh out the ingredients to calculate the macros per serving. Spoiler alert: I have, and it’s amazing!
That’s my goal. And that’s what this blog is going to focus on; getting back to normal and regaining control of my eating. Some people call it Intuitive Eating (IE), but I really don’t think that it should have a label. In the world of hundreds of different diets, eating normal should NOT have a label, however, since that’s how some people know it as, I will refer to it that way as well.
Last Wednesday was my first day of normalcy. I didn’t open my food tracker that day, nor have I opened it since. I’m not tracking any meals, but I am using this Fitbook to track what I am eating and how it makes me feel. Good, gassy, bloated, etc. Over the winter I did learn that I am intolerant to soy and egg whites, so there are some foods that really upset my stomach,and this helps me keep an eye on what triggers pain. You can find this online at Amazon, but I picked it up for $19.99 at Target in the workout section. My cousin actually showed it to me because she’s using it too!
I realize that this post was incredibly long, but I wanted to just get it all out there. It feels really nice to be talking about this, and I feel like there are probably a few girls and guys out there that can relate to my struggles. I know topics that relate to any type of struggle can be scary to talk about or to admit to, but I hope that my documentation of my relationship with food can help others.
I think that a lot of us want to appear like we have it all together, but the truth is, just because someone might look like they have it all, doesn’t necessarily mean that they do. Just because someone has a YouTube channel, a blog, or a popular Instagram account does not mean that they don’t have an internal battle that they too are fighting. You never know what people are struggling with internally, and while it can almost be easier to keep it to yourself, being open about it is SO much more refreshing. Today I am telling you that I too have struggles, that my life isn’t picture perfect. This is my unfiltered blog post. The behind the scenes of my life.
Tomorrow I will be back with a post that shares with you how the first half week of eating normally or intuitively has gone, any challenges I’ve dealt with, how I’m feeling, etc. I am incredibly happy that I have shared this with you and that I am on the path to a healthier me.
I’m not going to end this post with a question, but if you have experienced similar struggles with eating, I would love to hear how you have worked to overcome them, either in the comments below or by email.