Healthy Things Can Become Unhealthy
This is probably the biggest self-reflection point I've had thus far. A struggle between my brain and my body. Understanding now that things you deem to be 'healthy,' maybe aren't. Not healthy for the natural balance between your mind, body and soul.
Ladies, we’ve all been there in one way or another… The “I have to be in a bikini in one month” or the “shredding before the wedding” crash dieting and crazy workout regiments. Whatever situation that began this slippery slope. The supplements, cutting carbs, creating the calorie deficit, tracking everything, working out for hours and depriving yourself of many things you love. That’s not the answer.
I was in that boat over two years ago. I was getting married and wanted to look my best. Muscular arms, lean figure for my backless spaghetti strapped dress. I’ve always been an active person; going to the gym, for runs, hikes, walks etc. But I wanted to truly focus on my fitness and knew I needed to start eating healthier as well. Eating more lean protein, veggies and fruits. I got into a more regimented workout routine. I started seeing results. I felt great. I wanted more. Addicted to the natural high. That’s when things started going too far. I became calorie deficient, obsessively worked out (would never skip or would work out multiple times a day). Looking back now, it truly was an addiction. I cut so many foods out of my diet entirely, watched every portion size and started taking supplements. I became vainly infatuated with what I saw in the mirror. Obsessed with the change. Seeing that girl that was more toned than she’s ever been. My mom told me I was starting to look "frail," my face and body almost too skinny. Frail? What is she talking about? I didn’t see that. I saw what my brain was telling me to see. I heard all the “omg you look fantastic” comments and I couldn’t stop. Secretly desiring that external validation. Post stressful wedding, I finally realized that this wasn’t healthy, that it wasn’t sustainable. My mom was right.
Ladies, do yourself a favor… stop depriving yourself of things. Stop taking those supplements that the distributors say are safe. Let’s be honest, they aren’t. Find a HEALTHY routine full of variety. Find something that is truly sustainable, for life. Not a 6 month fix. You will burn yourself out. You will fall off the bandwagon. You may even cause damage to your body that you wouldn't even think would happen. Then all that hard work was for nothing. Just a short-term fix. As the saying goes, “Everything in moderation.” Have a beer, eat the ice cream, have the burger with a bun. Even if you didn't workout! Eating these things only as a reward of your workout isn't a healthy mindset either. You are not a dog, don't treat yourself like one. Literally. Rewarding your 'good behavior' with food. Saying it this way makes you stop and think, right? Stop staring in the mirror, get off the scale! You don’t need external validation from others. You don’t need to schedule a hard workout to burn calories and stay fit. Healthy is a lifestyle, it's how you feel, both mentally and physically. Activity reduces stress, that is true, but it's only a technique, not the answer. Dig deeper and self-reflect. What is the root cause? What can I do to reset, restart and refocus? Go for a walk, go for a hike, do yoga, meditate! Live. Your mind and body will thank you. And remember, you are truly beautiful regardless of shape or size.