To be continued

Thank you all for the AMAZING comments on my last post about quitting dieting. I always say I have the most supportive readers but wow, I seriously could not have imagined so many heartfelt comments. You have no idea how much every single one meant to me!

And after such an emotional post, I’ve been struggling with writing a post to follow it. I have recipes to share, products to review but it just doesn’t seem right. I want to tell you how this new decision has impacted my life… but it’s too soon. So I’m taking a few days to reflect and see things through. To eat without “evidence.” I can tell you that so far it’s been liberating to say the least but I’m guessing the hard part is awaiting.

I’ll be back soon. Thank you again!!!!

I’m done dieting

*This is as raw as you’re going to get me. No editing. Just writing. Read at your own caution.* Here we go….

I’m done. I’m really done.

Do you ever hear/read stories about girls that used to hate their bodies, attempted diet after diet only to fail (or temporarily “win” losing weight… but then gaining it back, and then some) and one day just gave up? They finally gave themselves permission to eat whatever they wanted, and then (and I’m skipping a few steps here, I’m certain the most grueling and hardest) they came to accept their bodies, stopped the self-loathing fat talk and lived happily ever after even lost weight WITHOUT dieting?

Sounds like a fairy tale?

I think I’ve hit the bottom and I’m willing to give this fairy tale a go. I know these people exist and I want to be one of them. For the longest time I couldn’t give up the idea of dieting because I NEEDED to lose weight and with just a little more dedication I knew it just had to work. But you know what, it hasn’t worked for me in the past 6 months. Nope. Instead the bingeing episodes (or if I’m “lucky” just plain old overeating, with a side of guilt) became more frequent after a few days of “being good.” I’ve gained weight every other week (at least). I gained weight last week and *swore* that today I would stick to my points plus allowance to have a better chance at my weigh-in tomorrow. And then I cried because I was hungry and because I wanted almonds and then chocolates. I’m so sick of literally being on the verge of tears from just thinking about the possibility of the scale going up another week. And I’m so damn sick of putting so much emphasis on my self worth depending on how much or what I ate.

This is not an open invitation to become obese. And I’m sure I won’t. I truly believe that serious frequent overeating is caused by negative emotions and I’m willing to put in the work to deal with the cause to change the effect.

Food is very important to me and I’ve come to rely on it in good times and bad. Tomorrow I’m going out with some friends to a hot new restaurant and I’m excited. I want to eat, drink and be a little restaurant critic in my own mind. And I will. But I’ve also been eating to reward myself for “staying strong” for a few days away in Maine (I still don’t understand why I have the need for a reward when I never felt deprived… although I did stop at just one chocolate or one glass of wine when I wanted more); I’ve been eating when alone or bored or scared about my future. And I need to work on these things but guilt needs to leave the room because that’s not healing. That’s more pain.

I am still me. I love food. I will cook; I will eat out; I will share it all with you. I will also work on my relationship with food without dieting (I’m canceling my Weight Watchers membership immediately). That probably means I can stop dreaming about looking hot in a bikini come May. And that saddens me too (I will not pretend that it doesn’t). But maybe that won’t even matter by then. A bikini is so far from happily ever after. I want to be at a point where I actually believe it.

Only time will tell.

PS- the winner of the UNO’s giveaway is #53. Congrats, Natalie! Please shoot me an email (elina@healthyandsane.com) with your address.

Thank you all for “listening.”

The beauty of doing nothing, perfected

I took last week off from work to catch up on my mile long to do list, slow down and relax. I kind of joked on twitter about feeling guilty about not getting enough done, while on vacation, but the truth is it wasn’t really a joke. I kept thinking of more and more things I should have had time to do and then felt disappointed at the end of each day about my lack of progress (basically, nothing new at all – I just didn’t have 8 hours of work under my belt). Luckily we had plans to finish the week with a mini-vacation to Maine! Apparently I’m only able to calm down through forced relaxation!

The very first night we watched Eat, Pray, Love on demand (which btw, I was not a fan of… probably because I read the book and movies never live up to books) and the Italian bel far niente (aka “the beauty of doing nothing”) really stuck with me. Why should I feel guilty for taking days off to accomplish a whole lot of nothing and just relax? We all need to recharge our batteries. The rest of the weekend was definitely dedicated to bel far niente. You better believe that cooking and eating was no trouble at all! Winking smile [My mother in law, Jane, and I shared the responsibility.]

There was seafood…

Shrimp with penne in a creamy herb sauce (+ garlic bread)

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I made lobster mac & cheese

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[The men cooked and shelled the lobster, I did the rest. It was cheesy and creamy – the perfect Maine treat!]

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And couldn’t pass up the seafood lover’s omelet (crab + lobster) at the Boathouse in Rockland.

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SO good!

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I <3 lobster!

And then there were blueberries… we dug deep into Jane’s recipe archives and found some gems from 1994!!! I was 12 at the time. Good thing I’m older because I could make these babies. Oh my! Embarrassed smile <—that’s me blushing, yes that good!

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Lemon blueberry muffins. Heaven!

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The very last morning, Jane treated us all to freshly made yogurt blueberry pancakes. They were moist and full of giant blueberries bursting with flavor.

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[Email me if you want the recipes for either of these, I took pictures of the printouts!]

These were my favorite food things but the best part was definitely doing only things I felt like doing. I spent some “quality” time with magazines (scissors in hand – what can I say, I found it relaxing!) and watched more House Hunters than I’d care to admit… but that ended up being for the greater good too! The second we got home to Boston, I hooked up my laptop to the internet (together at last! :lol: ) and started researching bathroom vanities, tiles, window curtains, table runners, area rugs and more. Apparently the beauty of doing nothing has its advantages. My creative juices were flowing and I was dying to put them to use. Better yet? I was happy to come back to work today. They were happy to have me back too! Who me?

Are you able to take time off and just enjoy it or do you need to be forced into relaxation (like being “locked” in a cabin with no internet access and cell reception)? I think the Italians got this right. I’m going to try to bring some of that bel far niente spirit more into my life. It really is fun! :mrgreen:

Last chance to enter the UNO’s giveaway!

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