Just a little bit more …
- I’ll be content with my body once I’ve lost just a few more centimetres
- I will return to eating normally after just one more week
- Just a little bit of restriction won’t set me back
-> These are thoughts I have struggled with over the past few weeks. Lies I tell myself to convince myself that I haven’t “backslidden” in my thinking and restrictive eating habits. But if you have any internal struggle of this nature, then you will know that it takes some truth-talk everyday to keep things in check.
-> At the end of last year I committed to going “all in” in my journey to heal from Hypothalamic Amenorrhea.This was caused by prolonged periods of emotional and physical stress (which included calorie restriction and high intensity exercise), sending my hormones out of whack and putting my body into a constant state of “fight or flight.
-> “All in” for me, meant eating an excess of calories, eating some “forbidden” foods, stopping all forms of high intensity exercise and in a nutshell, gaining some weight. It was not a comfortable process or an easy one. I had to keep my eyes on the prize and gradually, my body began to feel “safe” and began to heal and return to balance. I had many more days when I was NOT happy with my body than days where I was … but, funnily enough I was happier overall.
-> That’s the kicker isn’t it? We tell ourselves we will be happy and content when we just lose those few extra kg … just one more day, one more week … But contentment will elude us until our goal is acceptance and appreciation, rather than criticism and self-improvement (“less fat”, “more muscles”, “nicer curves”, a “cleaner diet” or an admired exercise routine).
-> It sounds so simple, but to appreciate the beauty, power and capabilities of our body at its natural “set point” is still so counter-culture.
-> BUT if you are on this journey, then like me, you have to keep consistent with the internal work. When my gaze drifted from recovery to feeling “happier about my weight”, I found myself once again restricting and telling myself I could drop some body fat and still stay healthy and balanced. Thankfully I have people who know me all too well and love me enough to call my on my BS.
-> So here, before you all, I expose the lies I’ve been telling myself and remind myself that the “ideal” body is not that which I see celebrated on the TV or by the health & nutrition professionals on instagram. The “ideal” body, is the one that is happy, balanced and functioning as it is meant to! What that looks like is slightly different for all of us! Time to stop comparing and start tuning in.
(P.S. Disclaimer: I am not normally an over-sharer to people I don’t know all that well … but so many ladies have reached out and thanked me for my frank and honest sharing that I feel like this sort of vulnerability might be what is needed right now. I know I gain strength from other people getting real …)