Hello,

It’s been a while since I have written.  As you know I have been working on intuitive eating.  I read a book about it back in July of 2011 and it spoke to me.  I have been working on it ever since.

I had many times since reading it where I felt out of control and thought it was not working.  I had to go back and re-read the book (which I checked out from my local library) and it helped.  Before reading this book, I always thought there was something wrong with me.  I could not understand why I ate the way I did.  It was all or nothing with me.  My husband did not think I had anything wrong with me.  He said I have been like that ever since he has known me.  He always thought that since I maintained a healthy weight I was ok.  For someone who has never gone through it, it’s hard to understand.

Each time I had a binge episode it was due to being restrictive in some way:  Keeping my calories to a certain number, eliminating food groups/types (gluten, sugar, etc), signing up for food/health challenges.  Sometimes I would have a trigger and just not care.  I would give in knowing exactly what I was getting into and doing.  I have totally given in to the intuitive eating idea.  I can see how it takes time.  Little by little I have allowed myself to.

First I dropped my food checklists, I stopped measuring food so much, and I have stopped weighing myself often (several times a day).  I have been weighing myself about 2 times a month.  This has been the biggest thing for me.  I did not think I would be able to give up this one.  My weight has pretty much held steady for about 6 months (I fluctuated a bit with the holidays and my thyroid dropping, but have come back to normal with normal eating not restricting).   It’s nice not seeing the fluctuations from day to day when you don’t  weigh yourself often and wondering what is causing it (even though I know it is normal to fluctuate due to water retention, glycogen stores etc.)  I don’t use the numbers on the scale to celebrate a weight loss or send me into a calorie restricting mode from a higher number.  I am able to listen to my body and give it what it wants.

Some days I eat no meat, some days I do.  Some days I fill up on veggies and fruits and other days I need my bread/carb fix.  Some days I need candy or sweets, other times I don’t!  Some times it’s a bit of everything.  It’s so interesting.  I am eating like my 3 year old.  I am sure I have a ways to go.  Ideally I have always liked my weight at about 5-10lbs lighter.  I am curious to see if eating this way for a year or so will get me there.  Like I said I have had some bumps along the way so without the bumps I wonder what will come.  It’s possible that I am exactly where I need to be, a healthy weight for me

I am feeling balanced with my food.  Now exercise.  I have had problems in the past with my IT band causing pain in my knee.  As a result, my running was put on hold.  It allowed me to try other activities and forms of exercise.  As my knee got better I started to run more often (three days a week) and doing Tabata/circuit (three days a week) workouts.  I was doing what exercises I liked the best.  I even took it a step further and recently tried training for a marathon.  Not the best idea for me, but I was so excited about it.  I got through two weeks and my knee is now mad at me once more.  During those two weeks I felt mentally awesome, but I should have been listening to my physical body.  So with food I think I have found balance (In the past even claiming that has sent me on a binge, but it feels different now, I’ll be ok. J) but now I need to get it with my exercise.  I am taking it easy this week.  Lot’s of stretching, icing, ibuprofen, and some strength training.  No running for now, maybe next week.  This recent strain on my knee opened me up to listening to my body in other ways.  Over the past few days, I have left my exercise feeling better than when I started (my IT band was very tight when I started the workout and loose after), not overly exerted and having an extra sore knee which sometimes I am guilty of.  Just because I am not working out as vigorously this week does not mean I will gain weight.  It just means I will eat less.  I am learning that the body is brilliant and you can trust it.

I also have been feeling very angry about commercialism.  Someone always wants to sell you something.  Everywhere I go!  I can’t even pump gas anymore without a TV on the pump telling me I need to buy something!  I paid cash for something at a store and had to answer several questions on the debit/credit keypad related to my shopping experience and my potential to refer someone to the store!  It’s too much!  There were times recently when I felt like I could really use the advice of a professional in the area of intuitive eating.  I looked into various areas of it and decided I did not have an extra $200.00 for a 45 minute session or money to spend on the other options.  If you have some great information, and you know how to help someone, should it cost that much?  I am not judging, it just left me feeling very disappointed that I could get help if I spent a bunch of money and realized that I was the one that could help myself with advice from the book which I checked out for free and read.

So I am sharing my story in hopes that it helps someone else.  I found out about intuitive eating on another persons blog and it has helped me tremendously.  I am not a doctor, a dietitian, or a psychologist/therapist, but this is what has worked for me.  If you need to seek the help of a professional, please do.  For me it was more of making my self do the work suggested in the book little by little.   It’s been a long road for me and I feel so much better and I know I will continue to.

Editors Note:  I wrote this last week.  I did make it through the Super Bowl and ate normally.  I also got a phone call this morning from my endocrinologist saying that my thyroid is still too low.  They increased the dose of my medication.  This is good because I have been feeling lazy and cold again.  Now I know there is a reason for it!  J  I also have recovered from my marathon attempt.  My knee IT band is tight again but not with the pain that I had last week.

Here are some of the dishes/items I have been eating lately.  You can see a wide range of foods from meatless meals to meaty hamburgers.  The important thing for me is to eat when I am truly hungry and to stop when I am full.  It sounds very simple for some, but for others it’s a bit more complicated.

Chicken Stir-Fry!

Sometimes you just need a burger!

A salad with spinach, berries, feta, and balsalmic vinagrette.

Multi-grain bread stuffed with Gouda cheese.  A new obsession of mine!

Hearty beef and barley soup.

Veggie and berry platter.  So good and colorful!

Chicken curry on white rice.  What a nice change up for me!

That’s all for now.  Have a great night and I will talk to you soon!

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