The word "diet" became part of my vocabulary when I was 8 years old. I was a dancer and heard it multiple times among other older dancers at my dance class. But I never really became obsessed with that four letter word until I was in high school. At 8 years old I had a family member who would pinch my side and make comments of how I had a little extra on my body. This began my journey of negative self talk and self body image.
DIET. MY PATH TO SELF DESTRUCTION
My junior year in high school was when I decided to take this "diet thing" into my own hands. I began my path down borderline anorexia. I only allowed myself one meal a day. It usually was a candy bar from the vending machine in the cafeteria. I became a slave to the scale and would weigh myself daily. In a short period of time I got down to 114 lbs. At almost 5 ft 8 inches tall that was unhealthy. My clothes were super baggy and my collar bones were slightly protruding. It's not only the overweight girl that struggles with self body image. The skinny girl does, too. I was lucky enough to have family members step in because they saw this downward spiral happening in my life.
IT'S NOT A DIET. IT'S A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE
When I was able to look at nutrition as a lifestyle instead of a "diet" something changed. I was able to look at food as a way to fuel my body. Dieting is looked at as a way of suffering, torturing yourself, to become the best healthiest version of you. Then once you get to that target number on the scale, or pant size, you allow yourself to jump off the diet bandwagon and go back into binge mode of all things unhealthy. Food wasn't the enemy. My self talk was the enemy. "Well. I had a cheat meal. Might as well blow it for the rest of the day. Better start tomorrow.". "It's the holidays. Guess I'll blow it and start over January 1." I continuously would find excuses to not stay on track with healthy eating. Healthy eating is hard. It takes planning. And in a time where we live busy lives it's just easier to go through drive thru, or order that pizza. And eating healthy can be expensive. Something needed to switch for me. My anxiety was at an all time high. I felt like crap.
I first heard that nutrition was a bigger percentage of the weight loss journey than exercise when I was at a CrossFit class. They started a no sugar challenge. I was on board. I'm a little bit competitive and I'd seen my body make a huge transformation by doing CrossFit alone. So one thing led to another. I eliminated sugar, then tried Paleo, then tried Whole 30. My clothes started fitting looser. My anxiety started lessening. I was feeling better emotionally, physically, and mentally. My fitness level was increasing. My nutrition was now important. I no longer referred to the way I was eating as "dieting" but a lifestyle. My relationship with food was changing. I ate meat, veggies, and little fruit, nuts, and seeds. Seems like limited selection. Pinterest saved my life! Recipes galore can be found there for Paleo and Whole 30.
COLD TURKEY OR BABY STEPS
So how should you approach this? Go all in? Remove little by little? It really depends on you. Here are some recommendations:
* Plan your meals
*Keep a food log
*Eat to fuel your body
*Allow one to two cheat meals a week
*Drink your water
*Don't let a cheat meal become a cheat day, cheat week, cheat, month, cheat year.
Don't feel like you can do this alone? Come check out CrossFit Florence at 202 E Main St in Florence, CO. You will find a community that wants to support you in your fitness and nutrition journey.
Foundations Class Saturdays at 9 am