I’m sharing with you a get real post today, friends. There is something that I’ve gotten off my chest before but need to write it down again.
Phew. It feels really good to say that out loud.
You see, for years, I dieted. I have tried literally every single diet in the book. Since the age of twelve, I was already reading up on the Grapefruit Diet, the Hollywood Juice Cleanse (which involved drinking a HORRIBLE tasting juice for 48 hours that I snuck out to buy when I was 13, blech!), the Cabbage Soup Diet, Atkins, the South Beach Diet, Jenny Craig……… you’ve heard them all and so have I. And friends, diets really do suck.
Why do diets suck? Because they involve starving our bodies of the essential nutrients our bodies, minds and souls thrive upon. They are the opposite of #EatHappyLiveHappy and they continue the cycle of binging and deprivation so many of us have struggled with.
I’m writing this because over the winter, I did gain some weight. The world didn’t end, the roof didn’t fall in, but I did gain some excess weight (*and I’m saying excess because it really didn’t feel good in terms of my health physically). It became apparent to me a few weeks ago when I was digging the summer clothes out from under the bed and my summer shorts… they didn’t do up. As hard as I tried even when lying down on the bed, the zipper just wouldn’t budge.
And guys, we all know, that having your pants not fit… well it kinda sucks. Not as much as diets suck but that moment of reality hits you in the face like a ton of bricks and it really does suck, nonetheless.
And immediately, my mind started getting filled with old toxic thoughts I used to have surrounding dieting and losing weight. Maybe you should do a week long cleanse. Doing a soup diet might not be the worst thing. How many calories are you eating a day? Should you go back on Weight Watchers?! How did you let this happen to yourself?!?
It’s not rocket science, I gained weight over the Winter (as many of us do) because I was eating too many cookies and not enough healthy starches and greens, not moving enough and siting on my butt writing my thesis all day.
And then, a few days later, I got the news that one of my oldest and dearest family friends whom I love dearly is in the hospital again for Anorexia Nervosa. The news took the breath out of my lungs. Here I am worrying about the superficial winter weight I gained while somebody I love so much is struggling with some much bigger demons herself.
Friends, I honestly, got so angry and upset at that moment. Why do we live in a culture that says that deprivation and extreme dieting are OK? Why is it that we allow toxic thoughts to enter into our heads surrounding calorie counting, deprivation and starvation. Diets suck. Extreme dieting really sucks. I am not here to equate eating disorders to every diet out there but the notion of reducing and monitoring your food and calories to minuscule portions in order to lose weight doesn’t fall that far from the tree. Because that’s what diets are, they are starvation on one level or another.
And I digress, so there I am, on my bed and my damn shorts won’t do up. So, you know what I did? I went and cooked myself up an abundance of healthy foods to get myself through the week because I know that when I don’t have my healthy staples on hand I am more likely to over-snack, binge and miss out on some of the essential nutrients my body needs to thrive and survive!
This post is a reminder, that eating healthy and getting to a healthy weight is a journey. There is no need to ever, ever, ever diet especially when our bodies can so easily flourish off a variety and abundance of delicious, healthy foods (with some treats in between). For me that means eating a whole foods, plant-based diet filled with lots of veggies, fruits, beans, potatoes, rice and some nuts. For me, that means, getting my body moving and heart rate up a few times a week.
I’ve already lost some of my Winter weight, slowly but surely, and never have I deprived myself, not even for a second. I’m writing this because, if you can relate at all to this post, I feel for you and the path after dieting does get better even though there are always ups and downs like with anything in life.
Here’s to enjoying an abundance of healthy foods in our life with love and satisfaction and without restriction.
Here’s to removing the notion of guilt associated with food.
Here’s to eating happy and living happy, friends!
XOXO with much love,
(*And if my blog posts are a bit more seldom lately it’s because I am writing up my final thesis due at the end of the month – wish me luck! I’m filled to the brim with healthy Spring recipes I’m going to share with you once it’s handed in. Check back in a couple days for a delicious Spring soup! <3 ).