I’m not sure if you guys have noticed, but in the past few months, I’ve drastically changed the way that I eat.
Not what I eat, but how I eat.
Yeah, I’m actually pretty sure that you haven’t noticed, because who really pays that much attention to anybody else’s food intake? We’re all far too self-absorbed for that nonsense (well, I am).
Before we get started, I think you should go read My Story if you haven’t already. Yes, this blog post has required reading attached to it. I think I have a complex from all of the required reading for school, and now I’m unloading that on you. Sorry that you have to deal with my overdramatized psychological issues. Feel free to recommend a therapist.
Anyway. Read that and come back. Are you back? Now? How about now? Now?
Good. Sick stuff, right? If you cheated and didn’t read, I’ll fill you in: For a few years in high school, I basically worked out at least three (intense) hours per day, eating around 1100 calories. I had emotional breakdowns a few times per week and I was terrified of food.
It was such a fun time. (<< That’s me being sarcastic because talking about my issues makes me uncomfortable. It’s a coping mechanism. Again, please feel free to leave the name and number of your favorite shrink.)
Somewhere around my senior year in high school, I gave up all of that nonsense and started living my life like a semi-normal person. No more sugar-free Jell-Os for lunch! Wahoo party it UP bitches!
Except, I was still playing the diet game. No, I wasn’t crazy obsessive. Yes, I could skip workouts without much guilt. Yes, I was a happy and healthy person. But I still had that diet mentality. I still wanted to lose weight, get strong, slim down, tone up, increase my manhood by 2-4 inches…
Wait. That last one isn’t a thing is it? Those damn spam emails stick in your head, you know?
But you know what I mean. Like most of America, I was a chronic dieter. A seasoned dieter. An expert dieter.
I had this incredible knack for starting diets. I started Body for Life, Weight Watchers, Paleo, high-protein diets, plant-based diets, calorie counting on My Fitness Pal, calorie counting on JillianMichaels.com, and I freaking gave up added sugar for 51 days. (Please, please, please, nobody add up how much money I spent paying for some of those sites. I can’t even think about it.) I set goals again and again. I lost weight, and I gained weight. And a lot of it is documented on this blog, which kind of makes me sad.
Finishing diets, though? Yeah, not so much. You know the drill: You start with gusto and excitement, only to “slip-up“, then you get back “on track,” then you get hungry and stabby, then you binge eat and get sick and stabby. And you’re just generally stabby all around until you give up the diet. Rinse and repeat with a new diet. FUN SHIT.
I wanted to stop dieting, but I couldn’t. Whenever I’d stop a diet, I’d overeat junk food all day long. I felt incapable of eating healthfully or moderately when I wasn’t on a strict diet.
One night, I was surfing blogs and made the snap decision to sign up for Jamie’s Intuitive Eating Challenge. I didn’t want to diet again. I couldn’t diet again. Honestly, I was nervous and kind of ashamed when I signed up. I definitely went into the program with some misconceptions:
I thought the program was the new blogger fad diet/buzz word. And, you know what? For the people who aren’t ready to trust themselves, it might be. But if you do it right, it’s the exact opposite of a diet. No restriction allowed!
I thought I would binge eat bagels and ice cream for the rest of my life. And guess what? I’m not binge eating bagels and ice cream. Except on Bagel Wednesday, duh. (#FreeFoodProbs)
I thought the program would be filled with general douche-ness. Like I kind of expected people to be all, “honor your majestical stomach, you unicorn rider!” But they weren’t. Everyone is smart, normal, and amazing — they just struggle with poor relationships with food, like most of the country. Although, I’m sure I probably added a dash of my own personal douche-osity to the program, since I’m like King Midas except instead of gold, it’s douche-aliciousness. How many times can I say douche in one paragraph? Douche! Douche! Douche!
Oh my god.
But honestly, Jamie is amazing. She’s smart, well-spoken, and completely realistic. She accepts the setbacks and knows that nobody can eat according to hunger 100% of the time. Mostly, you should eat because you’re hungry. Sometimes, you eat because something is fantastic, even if you’re full. And always, you eat what your body wants. Always.
At first, eating intuitively was hard. I had to think about it a lot. But now? I don’t really think about it at all. I feel free. I no longer have to measure out every tablespoon of food. I don’t have to track everything in a stupid weight loss app on my iPhone. I don’t have to count and weigh and measure and go to sleep hungry. The food that I eat isn’t classified into “healthy” or “not healthy” categories. I just eat and I’m happy. My body image is better than it’s ever been and I love it.
Long story short: Intuitive eating is possible. YOU can do it. Yeah, you. And Jamie can help you a ton. Her program is absolutely fantastic. If you struggle with the diet mentality, I think you should sign up for it asap. It’s super affordable, you get access to the brilliant Jamie, and you get to join a huge community of women on Facebook going through the same thing as you. DO IT. I promise you’ll feel better about yourself than you ever have before.
I sure as hell do.
Whoa, ridic novel-status up there, but I just wanted to get you all up to date on my life. Thanks for listening to my psycho rants. Again, feel free to recommend a therapist. (CRY FOR HELP.)
In the comments: What are your honest thoughts on intuitive eating? Which diet from your past was the most ridiculous and/or crazy?