I posted a snippet of this story on Instagram the other day- if you missed it, you can check out the post HERE… and as promised, here is my full eating story! We all have our own stories, and often they begin at a very young age. If you are struggling with your story right now, message me- in July I am launching my very first group program with a focus not on WHAT you eat, but how to overcome negative thoughts and eating patterns that are holding you back.
It starts a long time ago….
When I was in 4th grade, kids asked me if my phone number was 1-800 SAVE THE WHALES.
When I was 15, someone close to me told me I looked like I was pregnant.
When I was 20, I realized that my ex-boyfriend dated me because he had a thing for chubby girls.
When I was 23, and just started CrossFit, my boyfriend told me my arms were starting to look ‘manly.’
My body was never good enough. Food was always a source of stress and a source of joy.
As a kid, I had a better diet than the average American.
My family never had processed junk around, and we weren’t allowed to drink soda. Sugar, candy and other snack foods were deemed ‘bad’ and weren’t allowed at home.
I would go to friends houses and snack on whatever I could find- Gushers and cookies and fruit snacks and Cheez Its… all the stuff I wasn’t allowed at home. It made me so happy to walk into my friends’ pantries and see all the ‘junk’ that was demonized in my own house. The fact that my friends parents actually LET them have that stuff if they wanted it… it made no sense to me that they could just have it when they wanted, without having it be something ‘bad’.
One time, I remember a family friend let me eat ice cream for breakfast when I stayed over one night, and my dad was livid. From his reaction, eating ice cream for breakfast was equivalent to them giving me heroin with my morning coffee. Certain foods were demonized in my house, and if I wanted them, it had to be done in secret.
When I left for college, all of a sudden there was no one to judge my eating choices.
I could eat whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. And of course, alcohol didn’t help. Besides that, I had basically no understanding of what a balanced meal looked like, or what was really healthy or unhealthy. I knew vegetables were good, candy was ‘bad’, and breakfast burritos at midnight were delicious.
Looking back, I know my family was only trying to protect me and make sure I ate healthier options. However, creating that kind of fear around food made it really difficult to just eat ONE brownie- somewhere inside of me I always thought someone would appear and take them away from me. Its like even as an adult I couldn’t believe that no one was going to judge my food choices and keep me from making my own decisions about what I ate.
My past with food continues to haunt me-
when I’m anxious or bored, I have the urge to snack. When I feel lonely, the fridge seems like a great place to look for company. These feelings don’t just disappear- but I have learned enough about myself and my tendencies to know how to manage them.
Completing my first nutrition certification in 2011 (with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in NYC) was a big step for me.
I finally realized that food wasn’t just something to stick in my face- it a the source of energy, a way to nurture my body, and a way to show respect (or disrespect) for myself.
I know now not just the foods that taste good to me, but the foods that feel good when I eat them. I learned to love nutritious food- not because i was told to, but because I realized that was what worked the best for my body, my goals and my health.
This process, from chubby kid, to confused teenager, to drunk all the time college kid, to somewhat balanced, more self aware adult, is the reason why I am a nutrition and lifestyle coach.
It took me YEARS to understand how to balance out protein, carbs and fats. It took me YEARS to learn how certain foods make me feel, and what to do when I feel anxious that has nothing to do with opening the refrigerator. This is why I continue to read, study, watch, and learn as much as possible about nutrition. Lifestyle factors and personal coaching.
I am here to help my clients learn, practice, and get back up again when they fail so that they don’t have to feel as lost as I did.
So that they can learn how to eat for the long term. So they can stop feeling out of control around food, or like food is a problem in their lives.
So thats my story- my ‘why’. My goal is to help people feel good in their bodies, good about the choices they make, and confident about their ability to eat ‘right’… and stop feeling out of control or lost around food.
What’s your story, and where are you in the journey?
Send me a message if you would like to chat- nutrition is complicated, and our histories make it even more so. Let me know what you are struggling with!