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Monday, August 28, 2017

5 powerful lessons I learned when I quit dieting for good!

     Over a year ago I made a promise to myself that I would never EVER diet again. Most of you know my story but if you're new here...First of all, Welcome:) and heres a little back story...

     My entire adult life I was the classic yoyo dieter.
Tried everything and nothing was sustainable. Sure I lost weight but only to gain it back. What I didn't realize was happening was the creation of an eating disorder. You see, over time every diet I tried eventually ended the same, and I'm sure a lot of you can relate. I just couldn't control myself any longer and once that happened, not only did I feel like a failure but I would literally eat anything and everything in sight to the point of feeling sick and purging. Then like an addict I would start yet ANOTHER diet, only to repeat the same vicious cycle. I did this for 10 years until FINALLY I had a revelation.

      I had to quit dieting...this was a huge part of my recovery from my binge eating disorder.  Finding self love and acceptance was also crucial but thats another topic Ill cover in a separate blog post...otherwise we might be here all day. So here we go... A year later and I can confidently say that I no longer suffer from disordered eating habits and I want to share with you guys some of my biggest lessons I've learned along the way.

  1. My mindset around food has completely changed. Before I started eating intuitively I had created so many rules and labels around food. Certain foods were bad, unhealthy, or off limits. If I indulged in one of those foods It would almost always turn into a binge because in my head I knew that come Monday I would be starting another restrictive diet and that food would be off limits again. So I better eat it while I can...and it didn't ever stop with that one food either. I had to eat ALL THE FOOD!!! I basically said F it and in the moment I felt better about myself but ultimately I ended up totally ashamed and embarrassed of my actions. Now that the rules are gone and I have given myself permission to eat whatever I want, whenever I want, I no longer have those old feelings. I can eat cake and ice cream at a birthday party without feeling like I need to eat the entire cake. I can have popcorn at the movies and be satisfied with just a few handfuls. 
  2. I used to think food was the enemy. I would get so anxious in social settings involving food. I was the person that brought my own diet food to holiday dinners or ate before we went out to dinner with friends. I told myself that I wasn't allowed to eat anything at the party or restaurant but there was always a battle going on inside my head. I tried to control myself but there were many times when I just couldn't resist the cookies at a party or the fries at a restaurant. Now, food is just food! its so simple but soooo freeing. 
  3. Exercise used to be my form of punishment for binging. Which actually made me very sad:( I grew up being very active, I loved physical exercise, sports, and moving my body. Now I'm back to that happy place:))) I love exercise...I am actually getting a little teary eyed right now. I know that may sound weird to some people but when your obsessive eating habits can have this much control over your life and lifestyle its a very emotional experience. Now I exercise a moderate amount, I listen to body, I feel energy from exercise, I do it because I love the endorphins not because I'm burning calories. I have forced myself to workout so many times in my life and I have pushed myself to the point of injury multiple time. NEVER AGAIN!!! You should exercise out of respect for your body, not punishment!
  4. Everyone might not relate to this next point but I'm gonna share it with you anyways. I used to make people uncomfortable around food. I was totally unaware of this until my husbands grandmother said something to me at Christmas one year. I didn't realize that everyone around me felt judged because they were eating pie and I wasn't. They all thought I was the "healthy one" the "fitness expert" the one who had her shit together. I guess I was really good at disguising my problem. The truth is... I was so consumed with my own issues that I could care less what everyone else was eating or how much they exercised. But I can see how they could feel that way:(  and now I can feel the difference. Eating intuitively makes you and everyone else around you feel at ease. The tension is gone and its a wonderful feeling :)))
  5. I have learned to listen to my body. I used to just eat by the rules and it didn't matter if I felt like eating or I if I didn't like a certain food. Now I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want and I am in tune with bodies signals. I don't eat an entire bag of skittles because I don't want cavities, I eat popcorn during movies because its what you do, I don't eat cold pizza for breakfast because I know I'm going to the gym and that isn't the best fuel for my body, I crave veggies and fruit after a weekend of pizza and wine. This is all normal and how you should eat. I base my food choices on how I'm feeling and my social situations. Sometimes I eat too many French fries because they taste good, but thats my choice and I don't feel guilty about it anymore.
   These are my personal opinions and what has worked for me. I share because I know there are other women who have had the same struggles and can relate. I don't think that intuitive eating is for everyone and I can see how diets are good for some people and their situations. I know that a lot of people can diet without developing disordered eating habits, I know a lot of women who thrive on counting macros, who love being vegan, and have gotten amazing results living the paleo lifestyle. Ive tried all those diets/lifestyles and it always backfires on me. I am a 100% believer in finding what works for you and what makes you happy! If you're still struggling to find that happy place, or have tried dieting for years without success let me know in the comments below. If you're interested in trying intuitive eating, I would love to chat more and point you in the direction of some awesome resources. 


  1. This really hit home for me! I love food and over the last few years have come to love exercise. My issue is similar to yours in that I try and try and try and seem to binge during stressful times. Or worse, beat myself up when I get something bad. I want to see food as something wonderful and not think about everything I eat. Can you point me in a good direction to learn more about intuitive eating?

    1. I can totally relate! I remember wishing and hoping that one day I would t be so obsessed with dieting and how I looked. It's a long process but I know you can do it!!! One of my favorite podcasts is mind body musing by maddy moon. I also enjoy following wayofgray on Instagram and this blog I hope those help and lmk if you have any other questions:)))

  2. I can COMPLETELY relate! You name it, I have tried it. Weight watchers, Palen, atkins, keto, whole 30, vegan, vegetarian. It never lasts and I binged any time I could. I have been working on balance and intuitive eating and I was so happy to see you post about it! Can you share any resources or tips on intuitive eating? Thank you!!

    1. Hi!!! If you like podcasts I would highly suggest checking out mind body musings with maddy moon and a good person to follow on insta gram is @wayofgray there are so many good resources but the most important part is to be relaxed about this new journey and not over obsess:))

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