Eating Disorder

On Food Anxiety and Enjoying The Moment

Sept 13, 2016

Today I want to chat a bit about feeling guilt or anxiety about not eating "perfectly" or "healthy" all the time. This topic is something I've touched on before, but it's always worthy of more air time.

For four days over the weekend, I had family in town and every single evening (and one morning!) we've eaten out. We're talking nice restaurants where I tried something that sounded delicious rather than opting for the healthiest option. Oh, plus a nice little cocktail hour with cheese and crackers before dinner (can I get a yum?).

Old Katie would have been FREAKING OUT. I would have been eating as few calories as possible during the day and I would have chosen dishes based on how many calories they had, rather than what I actually wanted to eat. I would have been so nervous about being bloated, gaining weight, and feeling horrible about myself.

Wanna know something?

I didn't gain 1,000 lbs!

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I didn't blow up like a balloon. All my clothes still fit the same. The world didn't end.

Are you shocked? You shouldn't be.I used to think the world was going to end if I ate anything unhealthy. I used to get serious anxiety about everything I ate - focusing only on high volume and low-calorie foods. Cheese? NO WAY! Real peanut butter? I don't think so!

I used to think the world was going to end if I ate anything unhealthy. I used to get serious anxiety about everything I ate - focusing only on high volume and low-calorie foods. Cheese? NO WAY! Real peanut butter? I don't think so!

But you know what? All that stress just caused my body to hang on to fat. Stress, plus the fact that my body was STARVING and not getting in all the food groups, would have potentially led to weight gain. So in reality, when I thought I was doing everything in my power to be thin, I was doing myself and my body a huge disservice by the way I was eating. Not to mention my mind...

Yes, I'm going back to my healthier routine today because eating well 80% of the time makes me FEEL good and I know that eating rich food isn't sustainable for me. But a few days enjoying delicious food with good company didn't ruin my goals.

It's okay to indulge every now and again.

It's okay to enjoy good food with family and friends. It's good for the mind and the soul. So no need for all that anxiety anymore.

Take a deep breath, and live in the moment.

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The Moment I Decided To Change

August 31, 2016

I often get asked how I was able to make a mental shift from obsessing over food and exercising to being free from anxiety and today I wanted to share the very first moment I could remember where my mind really started to shift.

First and foremost, I’m not completely free - I most DEFINITELY have my hard days and moments where I lapse back into old ways of thinking and actions. But I have changed SO MUCH and I’m so glad to be where I am today.

The hardest part about making the change is not just knowing you “should,” but deciding to ACT on that knowledge. Inaction breeds fear, but action creates change.

I remember one particular moment in time: I was staying with my friend and her family at their lake house in northern Michigan. I was fully immersed in my need to be as thin as possible, even bringing weights on vacation because heaven forbid I didn't workout one day!

My friend was making the vegetables for dinner and she poured olive oil on the veggies. My heart STOPPED and my stomach dropped. She saw my wide eyes and told me it’s fine, don’t worry. I swallowed my fear and focused on turning off that voice in my head screaming at me that I had to control what I was eating.

At that moment, I knew I was ready to change. I knew I wanted to live a life like she did, where she didn’t measure everything or worry about calories. I knew it wouldn’t be easy but I WANTED it, despite the potential consequences of gaining weight. That was step one in a looooong and still ongoing journey. Even after that choice, I fell backwards about a million times and even changed my mind, but never forgot that moment and the desire I had to be free of this obsession.

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8 Tips For Loving Your Body Now

Nov 25, 2015

I put together my email this morning for my Be Your Best Self Accountability Group and I decided it was something that I should share with my readers as well. Many of us are in the middle of our fitness or weight loss journeys and are still striving to get to our "happy place," wherever that may be for us. However...

...it is so important that we learn to love our bodies now, just as they are.

I know this was a horribly difficult concept for me to grasp for years - I hated my body and I felt like it was holding me back from being happy. Well guess what? I lost a ton of weight (the wrong way) and I was more unhappy than I'd ever been. I gained it all back in my efforts to get my metabolism and health back in order after what I'd done to myself and guess what? I'm more comfortable in my own skin and happier now than I've ever been. Why?

Because I feel strong and I know that my worth has nothing to do with my dress size.

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The holidays were of course a time that I would restrict more, exercise more, and be a ball of stress because I wasn't in complete control of what I was eating. I don't want anyone else to have to dread this time with family like I did, so today I'm sharing some tips for how to love and treat your body well over this upcoming weekend.

Tips For Loving Your Body

  • Don't starve yourself - you'll only make your likelihood of stressing and binge eating higher. Eat whole, healthy foods, EVEN the morning of Thanksgiving. Don't go through the day hungry or you'll feel more out of control of your food choices!

  • Choose higher quality food. FUEL your body and treat it well!

  • Move your body in a way that brings you joy. I used to exercise in an attempt to burn off what I was eating, and I hated it. It also made me hate myself. Get moving this weekend, but do it in a way that is FUN. Get your family involved!

  • Sleep! Being well rested any time, not just the holidays, is so important to keep your stress levels low and allowing your body to recover. Especially with the holiday, try to get in some extra sleep this weekend!

  • Make downtime a priority. Like I said above, I'm scheduling time to just be lazy. To relax and enjoy whatever it is that I love - whether that's mindless TV, coloring, reading - anything that keeps me relaxed!

  • Accept compliments. You know what you say when someone compliments you? "Thank you." That's it - no "oh but..." or "well,.." Just a simple "thank you" is all you need, don't qualify the compliment!

  • Forgive yourself. Did you way overeat at Thanksgiving dinner? Did you starve yourself and then end up bingeing on peanut butter at night? Forgive yourself. Note the behavior and move on. Beating yourself up will only make it worse.

  • Wear clothes you love and that fit right NOW. Do not torture yourself by squeezing into some dress or jeans that are too tight. Wear something that makes you feel comfortable! You're just punishing yourself otherwise.

Whether you love yourself exactly as you are, or you're far away from that - take little steps each day to treat yourself well. And talk to yourself as you would talk to your best friend, or your sister.

You are unique and beautiful and don't let anyone, even yourself, tell you otherwise.

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