Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Disordered Eating .... Are you guilty?

Disordered Eating...A very serious and common problem that many people face everyday.

Today's topic is going to become very REAL very fast. It is something that needs to be addressed and many people feel ashamed and ignore this problem instead I am going to speak out about it !!!

For those of you who don't know my story I will let you into my struggles with disordered eating. I have been overcoming an eating disorder for about 10 years. Yes, my life has been a battle over food and the lack of respect for myself. I have been lucky enough to have amazing people in my life that gave me the biggest wake up call of my life and I am truly thankful they were brutal and honest with me. In college my friend introduced me to the gym and lifting weights. I was HOOKED ! She reminded me that in life STRENGTH is more beautiful and empowering than skinny.

I took the gym as my outlet. Using the weights to drive my health in a better direction. In order to be strong you have to eat to support your goals. I used this as my motivation to challenge my disordered eating and I found my inner passion. My drive to overcome this disease is what motivated me to leave my anorexia and bulimia in the past. It is why I am a personal trainer today. I promised myself that I would do anything in my abilities to give to others the give of inner strength and finding health, fitness, and nutrition to empower your life. In order to have an amazing life you need to treat yourself with respect from the inside with self-love and self- acceptance. I want everyone to know that even though I was faced with challenges, I chose to fight my way into a healthier life. I STRUGGLE ... damn I struggle and I want you all to know that even on bad days, we still have the ability to overcome the past and choose to be better !!! Let me explain what disordered eating is and why I feel its so important to speak on this issue !

What is disordered eating... Anytime you overindulge and then try to compensate for it, you’re engaging in the “binge-punish” cycle. Whether it is in the form of purging food or through exercise. If you feel any guilt after eating you are dealing with some disordered eating habit. People perceive their behavior as “bad” when they lose control, and then they perceive their behavior as “good” the next day when they try to undo the damage. A lot of people go through this cycle every single day and don’t realize it’s disordered… all you see is the weight gain that happens as a result. It turns into yo-yo fad dieting, gaining and losing, then losing control feeling guilty and stop exercising because you don't see the point if nothing is changing.

How did eating become so intense and why is there such a stigma on becoming thin? Our society likes to make things complicated. Not only is there a new diet that comes out weekly claiming to lose weight fast but they combine photo-shop to make even the ideal look unreal. Breaking free from this cycle is possible. It takes dedication and commitment everyday. It comes from trusting yourself and having control over you again and not letting the eating control you.

Step one is to nourish your body. If you are famished you will reach for whatever you see, healthy or not. If you have an association with it such as good feelings or comfort, trying to stop eating is the hard part that begins that binge-punish cycle. In order to break this habit feed your body good ALL DAY long !

Step two is to make sure you have healthy food options always available to you. I am a huge preacher on prep cooking your foods at the beginning of the week and then having them ready to go at any given time. Fail to plan, plan to fail !!!

The final step is to ask yourself "why" ?? Why are you eating those foods? Are you hungry, bored, stressed? Many time we eat for emotions not because our bodies are hungry for them. Unfortunately we also eat the high carb, sugar loaded, high calorie foods because they make us "feel good" in the moment. Our whole lives food and good times are associated together. Think about it.. BIRTHDAYS-HOLIDAY'S- SPECIAL OCCASIONS... what do they all have in common?? Food !!! And good comfort food !!! That starts the association between food and feel good which is why disordered eating almost feels normal when you become stressed ! It becomes normal to use food and a feel better mechanism and then if you eat and eat more you might feel better in the moment... then the guilt and then the cycle begins !

Self compassion doesn’t come naturally for most of us because we operate under the assumption that if you’re hard on yourself you’ll be more successful. This is a giant misconception and I think it’s what keeps people locked in their disordered eating. If you are struggling with this issue, be compassionate with yourself and give yourself some forgiveness. Seek the help of friends who you trust and value their opinions. Learn to trust yourself and find different ways to cope with your emotions !!

If you’re trying to change your disordered eating you have to change your disordered thinking. See if you can let go of the smallness goal because ironically, the strategies that make you weigh less initially are the same exact ones that either backfire and make you gain weight in the long run, or enslave you in a life of wasting away.

When you lose weight without building muscle you become a “smaller” person or known as skinny-fat. You have to eat fewer and fewer calories because your body is not expending as much. But building muscle changes that. It makes you expend more energy, and it requires you to consume more energy to grow. Your metabolism is faster and you burn more at rest. Use the gym to your advantage and push yourself out of your comfort zone !!!

Don't enslave yourself to disordered eating. Don't fall into that binge-punish cycle and try to show yourself compassion !! I found my strength through the power of the weights. I found my life again by challenging my mind. I am still working on overcoming my eating disorder. I have good days and bad just like all of you. My control is what I use to keep me focused to not let my eating disorder define me but I define myself. I am in control and I will control how I feel !! Find love for yourself and treat yourself with respect !!

Workout time.

3 rounds of:
15 clean and presses
10 one leg step ups (20 toatal )
15 bench hop overs (30 total)
2 rounds:
100 mt climber
25 sit ups
10 ab rollouts
3 rounds
15 kettlebell swing squat
10 one arm rows per arm
15 hand release pushups
2 rounds
25 plank jacks
20 jump squats
15 ab sit up with right and left twist

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