So having a blog is hard (shocker.) Already I’ve had 5 or 6 blog post ideas in my head, and then a few days go by and I realize I haven’t actually posted anything. So here we go!
Today I really wanted to basically brain-dump why I started a blog. As I mentioned, I have been reading food/healthy living/lifestyle blogs for almost 10 years now. Many of them started as taking photographs of everything they ate in a day while dieting, to more lifestyle, to exercise, and now several have taken the direction of intuitive eating/lifestyles. In fact, I am almost certain that reading these blogs is what encouraged me to run my first half marathon, and then three more after that.
So, I loved reading blogs. Eventually I found ones that explored disordered vs intuitive eating, which really resonated with me.
Like many women, I went through phases of distorted body image. I specifically remember the moments as a child that I learned that sitting down makes your thighs look fat, that big boobs are good and flat chests are subpar, and even about the infamous coveted thigh gap before social media even existed. It’s a lot to take in as a young girl, and even more to stand up against.
I had a period in high school where I compulsively counted calories, restricting my diet and exercising out of punishment. One of my sharpest memories of this time was in the dead of winter, and while driving somewhere I blasted the A/C in my car as high as it would go, because in my mind shivering burned more calories. Clearly I had some work to do on myself.
Fast forward to college, when I went the exact opposite direction. Food was for pleasure now, and who cared if I had a “fourth meal” (aka midnight) of chips and queso? I went a little crazy food wise during college, ignoring fullness cues and eating almost out of rebellion to my former restrictive self. Obviously I gained some weight during college, and even more after I graduated and started my desk job.
All during this time, I tried almost every diet out there. South beach, weight watchers, calorie counting, macro counting, Whole 30, the list goes on. Everything was temporary, and in my mind when the diet inevitably failed, I was a failure.
Thankfully, I had developed a pretty healthy love of exercise at this time. I discovered step class and fell in love, taking classes every time I visited home, and occasionally running or lifting weights back at college.
In 2011 I studied for and passed my group exercise certification, and during my last semester at college, began teaching a step class on campus. I have to admit, I was pretty terrible. But practice makes progress, and I’m still teaching now almost 6 years later.
Eventually I started practicing intuitive eating, where nothing is off limits and you make an effort to truly enjoy your food. Quitting the nighttime snacking (when not hungry/just out of boredom) was a huge challenge for me. It took a lot of practice, but I feel so much better in my body now that I listen to my hunger/fullness cues AND my cravings. That also includes cravings for movement! There is a huge difference between being in the mood for restorative yoga vs a HIIT boot camp.
So why did I start a blog? I love reading them, and I love writing. But more than that, I wanted to share my journey to where am I now, and wherever I go in the future. I still love group exercise, and I still love food. Discovering intuitive eating has allowed me the freedom to truly enjoy food and love my body. Do I still have bad days where I feel bloated and gross? Of course, that’s part of being human. But most of all I believe food and movement should be a source of celebration, not of stress and punishment. So that’s why I’m here! Thanks for reading, and I hope you come along for the journey.