I’ve dithered for a while about how to write this post, and how open I want to be… I’m not yet (nor do I know if I ever will be) able to post my whole life story on the internet, that just isn’t me. But bits of certainly creep onto the blog, as (I hope) I am very me on here so they have to!
So, it is probably clear by now that I have had issues with food in the past. Without going into too much detail, I’ll cut a long story short instead. I’ve struggled with low body image and self esteem, associating food too much with emotions (the binge – man I hate that word – self loathing cycle), essentially starved myself to get down to weight for the sport I love, followed by completely loosing sight of what is ‘normal’ (for me) eating. So basically all ends of the spectrum.
Then, exercise. From the age of 14 I’ve been a rower, to a high – and intense – level. I associate exercise with pain, sweat, tears, glory, racing, winning. But also loosing and failure. That’s what happens when you push your limits – sometimes you break. And I did. It was horrible, painful, and a really hard time in my life – my body just couldn’t take anymore after years of struggling with back/shoulder problems. And I came to resent, sometimes even fear exercise. Whatever I did, it never felt good enough.
But now, after a long time and a lot of hard work and support from some fabulous people, I seem to be finding my happy medium. Having gone through the whole low calorie/low fat/chemicalised (totally a word) food cycle I finally learnt that that isn’t actually FOOD. There are no nutrients, no satisfaction, no soul. Food should be real, whole, unprocessed, and (where possible!) made with love. Sticking with this ideology will not only nourish your body but also your soul. You mood is better, you think more clearly, and feel more like you. Yes, sometimes I want ice cream, sugary/chemically things. And I eat them. Not all the time, but now and again and in moderation (ah yes, that word). Never again do I want to be that person sat at the restaurant table having a complete freak out because none of their ‘safe’ foods are on the menu and they don’t know how many calories are in the meal… No thank you.
And did you know – you can still get fitter and stronger without pushing yourself until you want to be sick? Revelation. Yes, I still love to push my body – it’s all I’ve known for about 9 years, and I love it. I love to watch my body tone up and get quicker and stronger. But sometimes it’s okay to take a break, have a day off, sleep in, skip a workout. The world goes on and you don’t balloon into Mr Blobby. Going back to my post the other day it’s all about the balance. Do what makes you feel good, what makes you happy – be it CrossFit, marathon running, yoga, dance (0hhh to be able to dance), unicycling, who cares – just have fun!
To quote my fabulous American friends ‘you do you girrrrrrrl’.
What’s your philosophy? What makes you feel good?