First off, I want to say a BIG thank you to all the love, comments, and likes on part one of my anorexia story!
I would have never thought it would reach as many as it did. My story has been a long time coming, and just recently I have decided it’s time to share it with others.
An eating disorder is nothing to play with. It not only affects the person physically, but mentally and emotionally as well.
Even by the end of high school, although I had recovered (in the sense of the word), I still had a long journey of struggles ahead of me.
I entered college in 2010 at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. I was starting off as a photography + graphic design major and had all intentions of being an art major.
I loved taking pictures and letting my creative juices flow on creating things.
I immediately starting meeting new people, making new friends, taking mostly art classes, and I was just enjoying the adjustment to college. It wasn’t just me going to college though. Good ole Ana (the voice of anorexia) came right with me to mess up my thinking and habits.
In the beginning part of college, things were fine. I had starting to pick up running (like, a few laps and that was it), and exploring a couple different fitness classes since I was no longer playing tennis, like I did in high school.
My friends and I would eat at the cafeteria, go out and explore new eating places around Nashville, and even though it was fun and we enjoyed good food, the voice in my head started telling me I need to lose a little, eat better, and pick up more exercise. I wanted to be the girl at college that was pretty and looked amazing, because I never felt that in high school.
By my sophomore year, I had changed majors to Exercise Science and Nutrition, because even though I was still struggling with my own issues in this area, I still knew I wanted (and needed) to major in this field. Deep down I just knew it was MY major.
By the time I started my exercise science classes, I had picked up more running and was actually starting to train for my first half marathon. I loved the feeling running gave me, and I loved being able to see how far my body was able to go.
I actually had a decent balance with my nutrition when I was starting to train, and I had done some research too, but it was also around this time I found My Fitness Pal and started counting calories. I thought If I counted calories, ate the right foods, and kept up with my running, I would be able to keep slim, maybe even lose a little more, and that would make me happier.
I completed my first half marathon in 2012 and it was such a rush that my body was strong enough to run that distance, although it was slow.
After that, I wanted to run more and more half marathons. I wanted to see just how much running my body could do, and I kept counting calories, but unfortunately I was tracking at 1200 calories a day (and that is NOT enough for just about anyone…let alone at all the exercise I was doing). I thought it was ok though.
People had noticed I had slimmed up some, but it wasn’t anything like when I had starved myself. Around this time I was also doing spin classes AND running almost everyday. If I wasn’t starting my morning in a spin class, I was running. If I had free time in my afternoon, I was either running more or catching the afternoon spin class.
By the time 2013 (junior year approached), while I wasn’t underweight, I had slimmed up a lot and refused to eat a lot of foods. I had gotten back to Ana thoughts on what I couldn’t eat because it would make me “fat” again. Now, I wasn’t even fat to begin with when I started college, but in my mind I was.
My best friend was getting married March of 2013, and I was a bridesmaid. In the months leading up to the wedding, I was becoming more obsessed with numbers again. If it wasn’t the number calories I was eating, it was the number on the scale again. I had gotten to a point where I would weigh every morning and if I was up even a little, I would take something else out of what I ate that day.
By the time Staci’s wedding rolled around, I had gotten my weight down to 117-118 pounds. I was still 5’4”, but I was so tired most days, I was cold ALL the time, and I was refusing going out to eat with roommates/friends at times just because I didn’t want to “overeat”.
I was way too focused on what I ate, how much I ate, and how much I was exercising…and it was taking a toll on my body physically and internally.
Backing up some and being a little personal for a minute: Most girls when I was younger started their mentrual cycle at early ages…most before or around hitting high school. Guys…I was 16 when I started. 16. My body was delayed on me starting due to my eating disorder.
Now moving back up to this time during college. I was so low in my numbers (eating and weight dropping) that I legitimately went without any menstrual cycle for close to 6 months. That is NOT healthy when you are a woman. Secretively, I told nobody about this, and part of me was actually happy that I wasn’t having to deal with it, but it was not good for my body.
By the time my senior year rolled around, I was still in the same habits: running lots, spin classes, 2x workouts in one day, eating little/not enough, and going 2-3 months at a time before getting another menstrual cycle.
I was starting to spiral down more by this point. It came to a point that I knew I wasn’t eating enough and was so hungry, but I refused to eat more than I thought I “had” to. It resulted to me eating a bag of steamed veggies most mornings, because it was vegetables and super low in calories. How dumb is that??
I had even more half marathons under my belt by this point, and even a Disney run or two, which was so much fun! Slowly, though, I was starting to get burned out on it and my body just about had enough of what I was putting it through.
It wasn’t long after my roommates and I had gotten back from Christmas break that they sat down around me and told me they were worried about me. They were really seeing how little I was eating and how much I was exercising. Two out of three of my other roommates were majoring in exercise science too, so it was a big deal (and an eye opener) when they sat me down.
Once again, I was overcome with my body image, eating disorder thoughts/habits, and had gotten myself in a dark place again.
Graduation was approaching for 2 of my roommates in the spring, while me and my other roommat would be graduating in the summer. I went home to finish up an internship + a class that summer, and I started trying to do better with my eating, exercising, and body image.
I still dabbled in counting calories and I still ran and worked out, although I did drop it to 1x a day. I was staying busy but still struggled everyday with wanting to look better, do more, eat less, etc. All the same things that I had been struggling with in Nashville, but on a less intense level.
August had rolled around and graduation from college had finally arrived! At this point I was up a little more in my weight, I was eating a little more, but still very cautious, and I had told myself after I graduated I would finally get on the road to self acceptance, body acceptance, self-love, and food freedom.
I can honestly say now I am 95% at a place where I am truly loving my body, accepting who I am, and finding that food freedom…oh and NOT counting calories! But all of that will be in part 3 of my story soon… 😀
What I talked about in my story above is a common thing for many girls and women. We think eating less, exercising more, and counting super low calories is going to help us reach our goals.
For me personally, I would say I had Orthorexia during my college years.
This is not as common or well known as Anorexia, Bulimia, or Binge Eating Disorder, but is something very prevalent.
According to the National Eating Disorder Awareness website, Orthorexia is defined as:
Those who have an “unhealthy obsession” with otherwise healthy eating may be suffering from “orthorexia nervosa,” a term which literally means “fixation on righteous eating.” Orthorexia starts out as an innocent attempt to eat more healthfully, but orthorexics become fixated on food quality and purity. They become consumed with what and how much to eat, and how to deal with “slip-ups.” An iron-clad will is needed to maintain this rigid eating style. Every day is a chance to eat right, be “good,” rise above others in dietary prowess, and self-punish if temptation wins (usually through stricter eating, fasts and exercise). Self-esteem becomes wrapped up in the purity of orthorexics’ diet and they sometimes feel superior to others, especially in regard to food intake.
Eventually food choices become so restrictive, in both variety and calories, that health suffers – an ironic twist for a person so completely dedicated to healthy eating. Eventually, the obsession with healthy eating can crowd out other activities and interests, impair relationships, and become physically dangerous.
I’d say after all of that, I definitely suffered with this. Their website says it’s not an actual medical diagnosis, such as anorexia, but is something very unhealthy and dangerous.
Please, please, please, if you suspect anyone you know is suffering through an actually eating disorder or disordered eating patterns, look up the NEDA website and contact someone to get them help.
Happy Monday everyone!
I hope you had a great weekend despite the rain and dreary weather. It was more low key for me, but I was able to relax and get some things done as well.
Today I thought I would share with you a few things that I meal prepped yesterday. Normally, I am not a huge fan of meal prepping. I don’t like spending the whole afternoon cooking/baking and placing every meal in its own individual container. If you have an 8-5 job, then it may be handy for you, but it’s just too much for me.
Personally, I like to prep a few things for at least a few days of the week, just so it’s easier to grab. It’s quick, and it helps with your food choices when you have healthy options already made. I am in and out of the house during the week with the way my schedule is, so it’s nice to have certain veggies and other things ready.
I roasted cubed potatoes and brussel sprouts at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. I drizzled olive oil and put a little garlic salt and cracked pepper on both of them. I like roasted brussel sprouts better…and can eat them warm or add to a salad for a little crunch!
I also boiled some eggs for the week. Normally, I prefer just cooking them in the mornings, or making my egg muffins with veggies in them, but yesterday I just decided to boil some for a quick breakfast or snack. My dad likes to take these to work too, so they are ready for him too!
Easiest way to boil eggs? Once water boils, keep on med-high heat for 13-15 minutes. Drain them immediately and run COOL water on top of them. This will allow the shell to ease away from the egg some. Once cool, tap them all the way around, and peel! 🙂
Boiled eggs are also great to put on salads too!
Who loves guacamole?! I am in love with guacamole, and I was in the mood to whip up a quick version of it to have over the next day or so. (Next day really, because it turns QUICK!)
I took 2 large avocados, mashed them, and added part of this guacamole mix packet. I usually don’t feel the need to have the whole packet in there for the amount I normally make.
For dinner I decided to go ahead and dig into the guacamole! I made a spinach salad, topped with leftover sweet potato and a kale + mozerella chicken burger I found at Costco the other day. It hit the spot!
Even though I don’t do any kind of meal prep every Sunday, and definitely not as intense as a lot of people do, I like it because you can do as much, or as little, as you need and want to make things easy and convenient for you during your week. I don’t like having the same meals every single day for every single meal…I like variety!
Questions for you:
Do you prepare any food for part (or all) of your week?
If so, what do you usually prepare? Do you have a go-to?
…what would you be??
I got asked this question a few weeks ago and I had to sit and think of my answer for a few minutes. Do you know how many types of candy are out there?? HA!
The question was asked to me in regards to what my personality is like. While my favorite candy is Reese’s (in any form), I knew it didn’t describe me well.
After careful consideration for a few minutes, I went with Almond Joy.
Personally, I don’t have these often. I like them, but they aren’t my favorite, so I actually tend to forget about them at times.
I am an almond joy because if you don’t know what is on the inside yet, all you see is an average chocolate bar/candy. But once you take a bite, you get a little bit of sweet (coconut), and a little bit of nutty (from the almonds)!
For many people, once they get to know me more, I open up more and you will see my nutty/goofy side as well. I’m no class clown, but I have my goofy quirks and I can be weird. 🙂
QUESTION FOR YOU!
If YOU could be any candy, what would you be??
Please comment below, or if you clicked on this through Facebook, comment on there if you wish. I would LOVE to hear your answers and get to know people more. Plus, I think it’s fun to answer about your own personality!
My apologies for only one post last week. U-Verse (AT&T) was out so I couldn’t do anything online!
I figured I’d start this week with a quick little weekend recap, even though the weekend isn’t quite done yet.
Saturday morning started with the usual coffee while I watched the recent episode of The Alienist. This is a new show that started the other week on TNT and it is amazing! It is set in the 19th century (right up my alley), and is all about solving a crime/mystery. If you are looking for a new show, I highly recommend it!
I had a birthday cake protein bar for breakfast while finishing watching the episode, and I ate a banana with almond butter before I headed out for my haircut at 10am.
Before and after!
I was SO overdue for a haircut it wasn’t even funny! I just got it trimmed and had the lady add some long layers. It immediately felt 10x better! It may not be a huge difference to most, but it is to me and I love it!
For lunch I had leftover steak my dad grilled on top of some greens + a taste of turkey sausage he grilled with the steak as well.
In between some blogging and reading, I decided to try my hand at some protein donuts! I made some a few years ago, and I wasn’t crazy over the recipe I went by.
These chocolate protein donuts turned out great! Be on the lookout for this recipe soon!
For the rest of the afternoon, I did some more blogging, put up laundry, and got some things done around the house.
For dinner, mom and dad suggested Olive Garden, so I went straight for their minestrone soup…my favorite soup of theirs! I had half a breadstick with it too. It hit the spot!
The rest of the evening was spent relaxing and before bed I got into the bag of valentine Reese’s I bought myself. 😀
Reese’s are my absolute FAVORITE candy, and these little hearts did not disappoint, like all their others! I have already found the Easter eggs they put out…and let me tell you, I don’t know what it is about those, but they are the best out of them all!
Sunday morning I got up and did some light stretching, and enjoyed my morning coffee while catching up on some reading and other blogs. I had another protein bar for breakfast like I did Saturday morning.
I’m not very stylish, but on days where I don’t have to wear my workout clothes, I try to put more effort into my outfit. Sunday I wore my jeans (from Walmart), a light pink lacy top (from JCPenny), and a lightweight black cardigan on top (from old navy). As you can tell I am a skilled model…haha, not! Awkward poses are my thing…
I was excited to wear my new necklace I picked up after my haircut on Saturday. The salon I went to had a lady selling some clothes and jewelry and this necklace caught my eye. I’m not a huge jewelry wearer, but I do enjoy longer necklaces, bracelets, and rings.
After church, Granny and I headed out to lunch at Dale’s Southern Grill over in Hoover. I enjoyed their blackened tilapia with a side of squash and zucchini.
I also had a side of their carrot soufflé, which is so delicious, as my dessert.
When I got back home I had plans on meal prepping some veggies that I needed to cook before going bad.
I baked/roasted cauliflower and carrots at 400 for 30 minutes, and baked a spaghetti squash at 400 for 45 minutes.
I love spaghetti squash because you can pair it with most things: ground beef/turkey, chicken, etc. I plan on putting some pasta sauce on it later this week and adding some chicken!
As soon as those were done cooking, I wanted to get a low key jog in on the treadmill to move around a little, since it was cold, rainy, and dreary outside.
I ran 2 miles on the treadmill while watching an episode of Supernatural, and walked half a mile to cool down. Nothing fancy, but just what I needed. My lower back was still sore from some deadlifts I did the other day at the gym.
Post run was one of these chocolate protein donuts I made, with a little peanut butter on top. (I’m telling you, I’m a sucker for chocolate + peanut butter)
I made some fresh coffee for dad and I, and finished up with this post and plan to do some other work/reading I wanted to get to today.
Some good and positive changes are happening in my life, and I have been happier now than I have been in quite some time. Sometimes it takes hardships in life to realize what you are missing in life…as well as what ( or who) you need to get out of your life!!
I hope you all have a wonderful week, and be looking for a great post on Wednesday that will share more of my personal story! 🙂
Happy Monday to you all!
I can’t believe we are in the end of January. February starts this week!! That just means it’s closer to spring, am I right?
So, yesterday I finally put my foot down to wash my makeup brushes…because, believe it or not, I’ve never cleaned my makeup brushes! Any of the ones I’ve owned over the years I have never cleaned…and I know that is BAD for my skin. I don’t wear a ton of makeup, and I don’t have a lot of brushes like some girls do, but I knew it was time to do it!
I’m so embarrassed by my foundation brush, you guys!!
There are many things out there on how you should clean your makeup brushes, but I just wanted something simple, easy, and not many steps involved. Who wants to use up too much time just to clean your makeup brushes?
I have one brush just for my foundation, and one brush for my powder, so I knew once I got going it wouldn’t take me too long!
Here’s what you’ll need:
-small plate or bowl
Step One: mix water and dish soap on your plate or bowl
Step Two: Swirl brush around in liquid mixture until clean (water will turn the color of your makeup, and you may need to do this step a few times depending on your brush)
I had to repeat this second step 4-5 times with my foundation brush!!
Step 3: Rinse out thoroughly under sink + lay out to dry.
Easy Peasy! With one of my two brushes only used for powder, it was easy to clean and not much to come off, but the foundation brush on the other hand… I will have to keep this a regular habit. You are supposed to clean your makeup brushes at least Once every couple of weeks (I’ve heard) so I will have to stay on top of this!
It’s good for your brushes and good for your skin!! 😀
Happy Friday guys!
Today’s post I am sharing 10 facts you may (or may not) have known about me.
1.Before majoring in Exercise Science, I was an art major (photography + graphic design)
(I still love taking pictures!)
2.Sunrises vs Sunsets? Sunrises!
3.I love most crime shows + at one point seriously thought about going into forensics.
4.My little dog, Jack, is my sweet baby
5.I enjoy going to the shooting range with my dad.
6.Christmas was my favorite holiday as a girl
(Halloween + Thanksgiving + Christmas…top 3 in order)
7.My favorite type of food is Mexican, with Chinese as a close second.
8.My current favorite movie is Anchorman…because I only saw it for the first time a few weeks ago!
9.I love Succelents
10. No matter where life takes me, I always know God has a plan for my life and loves me unconditionally!
Pizza is one of those popular foods, that just about everybody loves. At a young age, we see pizza serves in schools, at classroom parties, birthday parties, sleepovers, trips, etc. It is just one of those staple foods that is such a good go-to and is usually delicious.
Even as I am older, I still love me some pizza, but I don’t always feel like eating the classic pepperoni + cheese, Hawaiian, or meat lovers.
Some days I am craving pizza, but just want a little bit healthier version of it, and I don’t always want a frozen pizza, either.
Never fear, though! Pizza places are offering more and more options where you can make your pizza just a little bit healthier.
The pizza above is from Pizza Hut, and is thin crust, no cheese, lighter sauce, spinach, onions, and pineapple. I made my own and customized it to how I wanted it.
When a pizza can be that customized, you know the pizza company wants to accommodate what you need/want. Some people are lactose intolerant, and can’t do cheese. I can’t do a lot of it, so I opted for none.
You can pick and choose what you want as your toppings. Don’t like pineapple? No problem! Want only a certain meat and one veggie? Or maybe regular crust? Go for it!
Over the weekend when pizza was ordered at my parents, they got a regular pizza meat lovers and I ordered my (above) pizza. You bet I enjoyed a slice of that too, along with 2 slices of my own…and maybe half a cheese stick! (Balance, am I right?)
So don’t feel like you should take out pizza all together if you are on a healthy lifestyle journey, because you can definitely keep it involved!
QUESTIONS FOR YOU:
-what’s your all time favorite pizza?
-if you were to customize a healthier pizza, how would you make it?
I am sorry I am so late this week getting a new post up. A couple days I had planned on keeping track and taking pictures of what I ate throughout the day, and I forgot to take any more after lunch!
I do hope you enjoyed the snow day(s) you may have had from work or school and that you stayed cozied up with a blanket or fire. I know Matt and I did!
Today I want to share with you a quick and easy recipe for any of you chocolate lovers out there. I don’t know how many of you have a sweet tooth, but I feel mine is growing back and I just crave a little something sweet at some point in my day.
Of course, it’s ok to treat yourself to a candy bar, or a piece of birthday cake, or a dessert around the holidays, but there are ways you can enjoy chocolate and it not stop any progress or get you off track.
This chocolate bark is SO good and so EASY to make. It’s also very customizeable, so you can always tweak the ingredients that I used, as well as change up what you want to add in your chocolate bark.
Here’s what you will need:
-1 cup coconut oil (this can be found in almost any grocery store)
-1/2 cup peanut butter (not pictured, but I decided to add it in)
-1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-1 teaspoon almond or butter extract
-Whatever add ins you want: pecans, candy, coconut, etc.
1.First, melt your coconut oil and peanut butter and mix together in a bowl.
2.Add in all other ingredients except for your add ins, and stir well.
3.On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, pour melted mixture evenly on pan.
4.Sprinkle on any add ins you wish, and place in freezer for 45 minutes to an hour.
5.Once frozen, break up in pieces, and store in freezer.
As you grab these out of the freezer, they are ready to eat. Some chocolate barks will be too hard and you have to wait a few minutes. With this made from coconut oil, it is not too hard, and it will feel as if it will melt in your mouth.
I am a BIG fan of this recipe and it will be something I will continue to make for years to come!
If you try this out, let me know what you think, and what you added in!
Today is the first official day since Christmas I am longer sick sick. It’s the worst being sick around Christmas, but it seems a lot of people have been dealing with it. I’ve been drinking plenty of fluids, taking my meds, and getting more veggies in my body since that’s been slacking lately!
In my last post I talked about how you can be SMART when making your 2018 goals. I even ended that post with some of my own goals for the new year.
Today, to end the year, I thought I would share with you my blog intentions for 2018.
For those who are true readers and keep up with my blog, I thank you for sticking around even when I would have my seasons where I would quit or just didn’t blog for a while. You keep coming back and I love you for that!
Let me share with you now my intentions for my blog, and what you can expect from it in 2018.
–weekly newsletter: this is something I’ve always wanted to do and build up. At the start of each week, I will send out an email to whoever wants one, and it will be a word of encouragement, an update with life, or simply something I feel the Lord is wanting me to share. It’s a way I can keep connected with you guys on a more personal level, and you will know first hand about blog happenenings.
If you want to be a part of the newsletter, contact me with your email, or simply email me at firstname.lastname@example.org letting me know you do!
-more recipes: i plan on cooking more this new year and experimenting more in the kitchen, so watch out for more recipes! (I think I’ll throw some “what I eat in a day” posts too!)
–video Q+A: I’m planning on once a month (at the end) to post a video answering questions I will ask you to send in or ask me. These can be health or fitness related, or any other topic you want, even if it’s something you want to know about me!
–more honesty: I don’t want to sugar coat things for you guys or talk in circles avoiding the inevitable. This is on any topic. Of course, if it’s a product review, I always always will post on what I believe in, what I use, and what I truly enjoy! What works for me may not for someone else, though, and that’s understandable. All in all….more honesty, more reality, and more of who I am and the struggles I sometimes face, even as a personal trainer/health coach. More Matt too! ❤️
–DIYs: I’m starting to miss creativity in the form of painting and arts and crafts, so be ready for some DIYs/tutorials that will be easy and fun, whether it is gift ideas or decor! 🙂
I may have a few things up my sleeve and things I am still thinking on, but for now, this is what you can expect coming to the blog in 2018, and I am so excited! 😁
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and ring in the new year with friends, family, and/or loved ones. See y’all next year!
Hello my friends and welcome back to a new post after all the Christmas happening!
I hope you all had a wonderful time with family and friends and enjoyed the Christmas season with everyone.
Now that we have experienced Christmas and it is the end of December, we start to look upon a new year and what we want to accomplish.
To me, a new year is full of excitement, new beginning, a refreshed start, and a chance to set goals for yourself.
For many people, though, their New Year’s goals (I don’t like the word resolution) may not last long throughout the year if they don’t set it the right (and healthy) way.
You must be SMART about making your goals in 2018.
What do I mean by SMART? Having SMART goals means setting yourself up for success throughout the whole year.
A SMART Goal is this:
Most people just write down their New Year’s goals on a piece of paper in list form, and while there is nothing wrong with that, a way you can be sure you stick to + are successful with those goals, is to go through each one and answer each of these questions for each letter:
S-specific: Who is Involved? What is it that I want to accomplish? Establish a time frame + pick a location. You’re “why”–purpose or benefits.
M-measurable: How much? How long/many? How will I know I have accomplished it?
A-attainable: plan your steps for this goal wisely and come up with a time frame that will allow you to carry out those steps. (How can I plan my steps?)
R-realistic: Does my goal represent an objective toward which I am willing and able to work for?
T-time bound: When? (In 6 weeks I want to…, By June I want to…..)
If you take each of your goals and follow these SMART guidelines, you are setting yourself up for success in 2018.
An example of this can be a big goal or a small goal:
Say you want to start a health + fitness journey in 2018. Using SMART:
–Specific: I want to start eating smaller portions and start working out 3 days a week at my local gym.
–Measurable: In 4 weeks I want to be consistent with walking 2-3 mornings before work, and by 3 months bump up to 4 mornings.
–Attainable: I will start with small changes in my eating and a couple days a week at the gym. My next step is to bump up my days at the gym and start eating out less. After that, I will try a group class and try new healthy recipes in the kitchen.
–Realistic: It is most important to me to be healthy so I can chase my kids around and be around when they get older. Along the way I can lose weight and become stronger and feel better each day.
–Time bound: When can I achieve this? By the end of the year I want to be on continuous journey to staying healthy and have it come naturally.
As you can see above, following these guidelines for a goal such as this can help one to be successful even after 2018 is done.
My 2018 goals look something like this:
-Read 1 book each month
-Continue to grow my blog
-Become a health coach + help others
-Gain more personal training clients
-Train for another half marathon with Matt
-Be more spontaneous! (I plan things too often)
-Be more present
-Write an ebook (for you guys!)
-Enjoy life, love every moment + everyone in it!