I’ve had a few people ask me since I had my “Ah-ha” moment a few months ago to post a day of food…and talk about eating intuitively. It has been an interesting road for sure, going from worrying about my next meal or snack just after I have finished eating, to flying by the seat of my pants when it comes to food. I’m glad I picked yesterday to document my food because there were lots of things that would have happened back in my ED days that didn’t.
I woke up yesterday and planned on running first thing, but I was having a hard time waking up. Instead I decided to have breakfast first, wait a bit, then head out to the beach to run. I had a bowl of Kashi go lean crunch almonds and flax with vanilla unsweetened almond milk and strawberries fresh from the farmers market.
I’ve been having some jaw problems lately, including not being able to chew on hard things or opening my mouth very wide (damned stress induced teeth grinding), so I usually let my cereal soak up all the milk before I eat it. It’s quite annoying, but I’m doing what I can to make it better.
I headed out to the bike trail along the beach near the Ventura Pier and ran a steady 5 miles in 42:30 (8:30 min/mile pace). I’ve been working really hard on my posture and stride and with that has come some speed! It’s been fun getting speedier and I’m excited to run a race soon! That and I haven’t had any more hip pain (fingers crossed). Yay!
I came back and immediately refueled with a some Lemon Vitamin Water mixed with some extra water (stuff is whacked out way too sweet but I need the electrolytes even after a 5 miler. I sweat way too freaking much). If I don’t have this after runs more than 5 miles I get raging headaches that last all day and just about kill me. Lessons learned after well, listening to my body for once. I used to think I just needed to take some advil and drink more water but in reality I lose so much salt and electrolytes when I run that this is the only remedy!
I cleaned up and was hungry the second I stopped to think about what to do next. In addition to the new form and stride has come some unwanted muscle exhaustion and discomfort so I’ve been refueling not only with the vitamin water but also my Chocolate Vegan Shakeology. When I drank this stuff after my Insanity workouts it was amazing how much less muscle fatigue I had versus when I didn’t drink it. I mixed a scoop of the Shakeology powder with some organic kale, organic frozen mixed berries, organic frozen mango and unsweetened vanilla almond breeze. Stuff is super thick thanks to the mango (so much thicker than using bananas I think!) and delicious!
I want to add something to my lunch decision. Back in the day, this would not have happened. Why? Because it was not past noon yet. Isn’t that ridiculous?! Ok, so when my ED ruled my life I could never eat lunch before noon. If I ate before noon, it meant that I might get hungry before three, when it was “allowed” to eat a snack and that I might get hungrier earlier than that, making me super anxious and annoyed. Not now kids! I eat whenever the hell I want; I listen to my stomach no matter what time the clock says. So, just a little side note there for you…
Anyhow, I went out and ran a few errands to get some things for around Whit’s place. Living at his place means that lots of things are missing…typical bachelor pad. Hrmph. I bought a big cutting board because there is no counter space and now I can cover half of his huge sink to solve that problem! And of course there was the purchase of a bath mat…haha. I also ended up getting a cute outfit for the surprise I’ve planned for tomorrow!!! I can’t wait to tell you guys all about it!! EEK! I’ve been waiting weeks for tomorrow to come!
By the time I got home I was famished. Was it three o’clock? Nope. But my stomach was growling like mad and I had to oblige. Thank goodness my mentality has changed otherwise the hour long wait for three to come would have been miserable! I grabbed the first thing that sounded good: mixed berry soy yogurt and some fresh granola from the bulk bin at Lassen’s (a health food store in SoCal).
I also guzzled some more water because my lips were chapped; one of the first signs that I’m still dehydrated. I was also still craving something else and decided that I wanted to try one of my new purchases and cravings that I’ve had for over a week: A COOKIE! And a good VEGAN cookie at that!
I can tell these are not going to last long around me. So. Freaking. Good. This is Uncle Eddie’s Vgan Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip variety and let me just say I cannot wait to try the other varieties!
ED side not here, this would not have happened back in the day. If my body had said, “I want a cookie!” I would have told it to shut the hell up, that I had already had something sweet in the form of that soy yogurt, and I could have it tomorrow. Maybe. If I was good. Whaaaaat? Madness! Now, I eat what I want, when I want, no matter what. Because you know what happens when I don’t? That craving does not go away, even when I eat or drink something else in hopes that it will satisfy that craving. It ends up just building and building over time, whether it be a few hours or days, and then I go overboard. I can’t hold myself back and will eat too many to the point of feeling sick. Not fun. So, if I eat one cookie now, when I want it, I’m able to eat that one cookie now, enjoy it, and move on! Such a relief from the old days!
Anyhow, I did a ton of laundry while waiting for Whit to get off work then started on dinner! I had been craving Vegan Pad Thai for some time and decided to try making it myself at home. Well, first time is not a charm, but it was edible and Whit liked it (although he eats anything and everything…so maybe he was just hungry…heh).
It included lots of good stuff including: fresh garlic, fresh ginger, onion, carrots, mushrooms, bell pepper, broccoli, green onion, tofu, rice noodles, chili sauce, soy sauce, and black pepper. Mental note for next time: DO NOT OVERCOOK THE NOODLES. Yeah…mine sat in the water for a little too long and got mushy. Boo.
I shared a beer with Whit while eating dinner and it tasted great. I never used to drink alcohol because I was always scared of the “empty calories” but now I’m like, bring it on! No need to not enjoy a drink here and there!
Of course I had dessert too. Forget that whole, only have dessert a few nights a week. If I want dessert, I’m going to have dessert! I don’t ever eat very much for dessert anyhow because like I said earlier, if I eat what I want when I want it, not only am I physically satisfied but also mentally! So, I had another cookie that I had from this afternoon…I told you they were good. Ok, I had two. So sue me! I knew though that I was drawing the line at two because towards the end I wasn’t feeling so hot. Yikes. Lesson learned!
Another ED side note here, again, this definitely would not have happened. I would have kicked myself for hours afterwords and probably the next morning for having those extra cookies. I would have beaten myself up over the lack of control over sugar or desserts or chocolate or whatever. I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy those cookies and instead sent myself on a massive guilt trip. I also would have planned out how to burn off those calories the next morning (which btw I didn’t and haven’t…I got up this morning and just went birding for a few hours instead of running like…10 miles or something to burn them off). Again, thank goodness I don’t think like that anymore. It’s exhausting just thinking about it!
So there is my day of eating…or simply my day with food in it. No longer is my day centered around what I’m going to eat, or what I’m allowed to eat (usually based on what exercise I’ve done) but simply by what my body needs based on what I’ve done and want. It’s such a relief to eat this way…I sometimes can’t believe all the things I’ve missed out on because of my eating disorder and the way I used to think about food.
Hopefully this helps anyone who is still struggling with their meals, food choices, calorie counting (I don’t count calories anymore either! Woohoo!) or trying to eat intuitively. Like I keep saying, this takes time, but when it comes, you will know and it will be so relaxing and welcoming. The relief of not having to think about food all the time will make life so much more enjoyable and just worth doing what you want to do!
If you have any questions please feel free to ask, or email me (trying.to.heal [at] gmail.com) anytime! I want to help anyone I can in any way I can!!! Happiness after an eating disorder is possible!