Be the Boss of Your Body
Updated: Feb 24, 2022
As a religious "dieter" back in the day, I would constantly look at people's before and after pictures. I could spend hours scrolling through the particular diet's website to find someone who shared a similar story with me so that I could feel there was some hope in having a transformation of my own. I would dream about what would that "new Sonia" look like. Would her personality be different? Would she be happier? After I found someone similar in terms of how much weight they had to lose, I would read what they had done and then tell myself, "Ok, on Monday, I am going to stop eating ______, ______, and ______ (whatever I had overeaten/had to drink over the past few days.)" The new week would start, I would eat "on plan" for 5 days, and then come Fri night it was time to cut loose again. The cycle would start again on Sunday night with scrolling through pictures, reading that one story that tugged at my heart, starting the diet, and then partying over the kitchen sink on the weekend to hide the crumbs of guilt. I did this probably from early college years through having my first kiddo (post pregnancy.) Had we had internet more at our fingertips in high school, I would have started this habit earlier. Luckily social media was nonexistent as well. I can't even imagine what teens do these days. I wondered why these women "fixed" their problem, yet I could never get past my struggles. How did they suddenly make peace with garlic bread and cake, eat it, but still keep the weight off when I would sacrifice Wonder Lite bread for Sourdough, count those calories, and still not be able to get past the craving of "real bread."
What I didn't realize is, each person's eating habits can be so different. No one diet is a solution for everyone hoping to lose some extra weight. The women I was scrolling through just might have found the secondary foods that work for them, while some may be revisiting their relationship with food for a second time. I wish I could go back in time and tell myself that what works for one person will not be the same for another- it's all about bioindividuality. I also would tell myself that it's not just about calorie restriction and output, but about the way food actually makes you feel. There will be foods that give you brain fog, slow your energy, while there are foods that will make you feel revived and actually fill your tummy with fuel. Most of the time the diet programs I joined didn't really get into the science behind that. It was about losing the weight fast or just making it to your goal.
It's taken way too many years to finally see that the journey is never ending because it's so much more than just secondary food (what we put in our mouths.) It's about what causes us to have the kind of relationship with food we have going on. It's also about taking time for a ton of reflection, jotting notes, and measuring feelings as we enjoy our food. It doesn't happen overnight, I know you've heard that before.
Before starting my Whole30 program, I had to take a pre-weight measurement. I am not supposed to weigh myself during the program because I am not paying attention to pounds lost each week. It's about evaluating how certain foods make me feel mentally, physically and emotionally. This has caused me to really think back to how I would let those pounds gained, or lost each week affect my mood. Imagine, gaining a pound would ruin an entire weekend. And guess what? That would lead to either more binge eating or ridiculous restriction. I am happy to say that those diet mentality habits are slowly leaving my system. I am really starting to term food as which ones make me feel good and which ones I'd rather stay away from- it's not "good" vs "bad" foods. It's not just a Mon-Fri program, or one that takes holidays and then "get back at it again" mindset. It's a lifelong adjustment and I get to be the boss of it! I am happy with how I feel today and am excited for what the journey is bringing me. It's not over yet, but wow it's come a long way!