WIAW- Really Listening

by tessa8m on February 29, 2012

in Intuitive Eating Series,What I Ate Wednesday

Morning!

I enjoyed reading people’s thoughts about the Runner’s World Magazine article! It’s great to hear that there is an agreement about the serious need for ED/DE awareness, and how perfect that attention is being brought to this during NEDA Awareness Week! Thank you for your personal opinion and taking the time to write such compelling comments.

Here we are, already halfway through the week (woot!) and therefore it’s time for the weekly blogging trend, What I Ate Wednesday! As always, thanks and appreciations go miss mastermind Jenn over at Peas and Crayons, who always does this for us :)

A major aspect of my recovery that I strive to identify and handle on a daily basis, is once again learning how to eat. Perhaps that sounds a bit odd? Well to me, it is a necessary goal, as re-teaching myself how to both approach and consume food is vital for recovery. I need to go back to the beginning, the basics… with the goal of internalizing the idea of “normal eating-”

  • Normal eating is going to the table hungry and eating until you are satisfied.
  • Normal eating is being able to give some thought to your food selection so you get nutritious food, but not being so wary and restrictive that you miss out on enjoyable food.
  • It is leaving some cookies on the plate because you know you can have some again tomorrow, or it is eating more now because they taste so wonderful.
  • Normal eating is trusting your body to make up for your mistakes in eating.
  • Normal eating takes up some of your time and attention, but keeps its place as only one important area of your life

Umm yeah, none of these are working very well for me right now.

For me and the theme of today’s WIAW, normal eating means something else- really listening to your desires, wants and cravings when it comes to food.

Although I have improved significantly, it’s still quite difficult for me to understand I am truly pining to consume. For far too long now, my attitude towards this necessary sustenance is that it’s the ENEMY- the dangerous and forbidden evil that makes my life miserable. Yes I never would completely restrict, as I understand that at least some extra calories were needed to sustain my extreme workout schedule, but it was NEVER enough and every time I ate food it was as if I was breaking a rule.

During the worst times, I would eat, but it was always healthy and “safe” foods, ones I knew would never allow me to gain weight. As a result, I would not take into account what I sincerely desired- flavors, textures, aromasnone of these things mattered as long as they had the nutritional information that passed my inspection.

On that note, I did enjoy the healthy items I ate–> pounds of fresh, sweet fruit, crisp vegetables, and my daily baked sweet potato “treat.” That was it though.. there was no room for anything else , and I sure as heck didn’t allow myself to even acknowledge the cravings I might be experiencing.

Now that my recovery has continued in the positive direction, I am working on taking the time to check in with myself to see what I want, what I am in the mood for… oh but what a work in progress that is. The fear and thought I associate with this idea is that I am “giving in” and showing weakness. I am a weak person for recognizing my cravings, because that is what will lead to weight gain, unhappiness, and a sense of shame. Even if it’s for something healthy, well it just can’t be right!

I mean, what if I start to constantly want junk food, sweets, sugary/fatty treats?! If I start eating them, how will I stop?

Now is the time to challenge those thoughts and really check in to see and feel what I want to eat, and to remember that it’s both OKAY to desire a salad with a chocolate chip cookie for dessert. It’s FINE to have ice cream at the end of the day. It’s ALRIGHT to crave chocolate in the morning, as it’s ALRIGHT to desire a nice crispy apple!

This also does go along with the normal eating definition and the continuous learning process of trusting my body. I need to trust the fact that if I do want “junkier,” fear foods, that it DOES NOT mean I am going to lose my marbles, go bat-shit crazy and eat this stuff all of the time. In fact, if I continue to DENY myself of my cravings, well a binge is likely to occur. I mean that is dieting 101.. not that I am on a diet of course but you know what I am saying!

I know I am scared of this happening but it will not if I indulge the craving, so that it is satisfied… I acknowledge flavor desire, consume it so that I am then satisfied, fulfilled, and then MOVE ON.

Alright so here is last Thursday’s dishes… a day where I woke up conscious of the fact that I was going into this day truthfully asking myself before each meal what I want to eat. Although this is just one day, it is a small step in understanding why I choose to eat the way I do, what is based on eating disorder desires, and what me, logical, healing Tessa, is truly craving for.

Breakfast:

After my early morning circuit workout, I came back and showered and then asked myself, what do I want for breakfast today? It was a chilly, crisp morning, rainy and some sleeting, just an overall dreary winter day…. what would be a delightful meal that would provide some comfort, but also fulfill my taste buds and cravings?

This bowl consisted of- rolled oats, a sliced banana, plain Chobani (for extra protein!) vanilla soy milk, a plethora of cinnamon and a heap of nut butter. Cravings= satisfied.

Healthy? Certainly, and that is just fine. I replenished my body how I should and also did a great job of LISTENING.

Snack:

About two or so hours later I was hungry again (shocker) and normally I would go for a piece of fruit with some almonds, an energy bar, or some kind of trail mix. But let’s see, am I really in the mood for something like that? What else could be an option? I mean I am hungry, but not starving by any means and lunch is not too far away.

I walked into my campus bookstore not too long after and immediately knew what I MORNING snack was going to be,

These holiday-themed Reeses definitely have more peanut butter in them, oh lawdd so dang good. I took a bite and savored the chocolate and peanut butter combination that I used to know so well when I was younger.

Here is the thing though, this snack felt incredibly “wrong” on every.single.level… and I could only bring myself to consume half. Seriously, who does that with a single Reeses? Me apparently.

I know I was craving this, but having a oh-so-fearful treat such as this so early in the day was very difficult for me to handle. So I had half… better than nothing if you ask me! I had the other half later on that day, so why not just eat it all at once? Don’t know the answer to that, I have no idea how my brain justifies things sometimes.

Lunch:

I had a break during the day and decided to have lunch back in my room, I had the ingredients to do so, and this was a chance to once again satisfy my cravings! As I told you before, I did a pretty intense circuit/ST workout earlier that morning, so getting in the protein is important on days like that. How could I fulfill this need, respect what my body will benefit from and also have something that I want to, rather than feel obligated to?

Tuna Salad time,

Sorry, crappy iPhone picture

In the bowl: canned tuna, a good-sized blob of 2% plain Chobani, slivered almonds, and various cut up vegetables (red peppers, cucumbers, carrots, and celery- all sniped from the DC! muahaha) I also had enjoyed a nice fresh and juicy orange on the side.

I felt pleasantly satisfied after this meal and had a good mix of hearty and healthy ingredients to represent the various nutrients. Sometimes after meals, especially lunch and dinner (I talked about this last week) I am on the hunt for something else IMMEDIATELY after. I am sure there are various reasons for this, but one identifiable one is that if I am eating something other than what my body is craving, well of course I will be searching for more food.

Snack:

A few hours later when I was hungry again, this was a time that perhaps entirely listening to my cravings was not the best idea. I had not had enough carbohydrates (for me) at this point in the day, and eating a whole grain/carb something was a favorable idea. I am often lacking energy at this point in the day, and while it does have to do with my anemia, my carb intake is less than efficient at times and this most likely plays a role.

Now, I do want to “listen” to what I desire, but also what I need! This particular energy bar did the trick,

Great nutrition facts, plus the flavor on this bar was really enjoyable- nice and sweet and love cinnamon anything. Plus there was a good amount of protein to help keep the muscle repair going and satiation levels in mind.

Dinner:

End of the day… I am both physically and mentally tired… not overly so by any means. With my attitude in mind, and also while keeping the goal in mind to “listening” to my food desires, what is it that I want for dinner? Oh my I just remembered something fantastic, I have a gift card to Whole Foods, only 10 bucks, but hey, it’s something!

A trip to WF never ceases to make me feel better as it provides a bit of an “escape.” On that note, I am pretty sure this whole concept does have to do with my eating disorder. I go to WF with the intention to walk around the store, look at the new and odd products, not really buy anything, but plan foods I might one day have. It’s not like it used to be where I would go and not eat a darn thing…. I do eat there now and enjoy it.

At the same time though, is a trip to this store making TESSA feel better or the disorder? Not sure and it’s completely possible that I am over thinking this WAY too much.

Anyway, this is what I chose for dinner from the hot food bar,

Sweet potato Shepard’s pie! In the “pie,” mashed sweet potatoes in some butter (scary-ness for sure), peas, mushrooms, corn, and barley… with some other kinds of tasty seasonings and flavors thrown in there.

Wow does that look completely disgusting, but I will tell you something, it was one of the very best items I have ever purchased from a Whole Foods. Yes, that is saying a whole lot! It took me a while to decide on this, as I was paying attention to my cravings while looking around at the different options. Sweet potatoes are among my most favorite foods, it’s healthy (which I do like and is okay too!), it’s nice and warm, and it’s unique to me.

I trusted myself and was pleased with the decision.

Dessert:

On the way home, I just happened to pass by a fro-yo place and oddly enough my car pulled into the lot, and magically this appeared in my hand:

Yes I realize that whole shpeel was pretty obnoxious :) But yes, on the drive home I knew I wanted something sweet to end the day, as usual, and figured Go Berry would be a great place to stop, especially because they were had NUTELLA and strawberry for flavors… tasty.

So the frozen yogurt thing might seem like an odd “fear” as it’s completely healthy, and I decided on topping it with blueberries and kiwi as opposed to something well.. not-so-healthy. To me this is such a “dessert” and that giving-in/weakness feeling rears its ugly head here. But OH FLIPPEN WELL, I pushed through the negativity and ordered me some froyo.

Afterward I actually regretted not getting chocolate chips or some other candy on top… yes I satisfied the desire for something sweet, but not fully, as I was still on the hunt for another taste of, well anything, I wanted more food. I did satisfy this craving with a few M&Ms when I returned to my room, but that did not need to happen if I had simply “listened” when I should have.

In addition to that, I felt a semi-compulsive need to keep on going even after the M&Ms! Perhaps this was my body telling me it needed more food, but I believe it had more to do with even the minor restriction that I had done, giving me an increased urge to keep on stuffing food down my throat…

Yes I made a mistake in this, but of course, we all learn from out mistakes… and this is just another one of those times!

Overall, I feel the day went pretty well with really LISTENING to what I had a hankerin for. Again, this is all part of recovery- learning and understanding how to eat normally again, without the obsession, guilt, out-of-control cravings, anxiety…. All of these emotions and feelings will go away eventually, if I just keep working on it.

As always, easier said than done, but I am in the fight for my life here, and yeah, it’s going to take a whole lot of effort with extreme discomfort. I.must.always.remember.this!

I would love to hear from you,

-How “good” are you at listening to your cravings, desires, and specific wants for foods?

-Do you ever crave things at the “wrong” time of the day? If so, why do you deem foods “wrong” at certain times? For me it was that Reeses candy… it’s a fear food anyway and so early on in the day?! Very mentally difficult for me.

Do you find that if/when you LISTEN, your urges do actually diminish?

-Is it just me or are the holiday themed-candies even tastier than the regular?! Oh em gee that PB Egg :)

-What is the best dish/item you have eaten in the past week?! Any new recipe? Please share!

Have a most fabulous rest of your day! :D

 

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{ 147 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Khushboo Thadani February 29, 2012 at 4:58 am

Delicious eats and way to go and conquering one more aspect of your ED, Tess :)!! You are making progress and don’t be so hard on yourself- you listened to your cravings more so than you would have in the past which is huge! I am actually posting about this later on in the week but I’ve learned over the years that the only way for me to nix a craving is to eat the real deal, even if it’s a small portion! Otherwise it will keep on playing on my mind and chances are I will unnecessarily overeat and yet still not be satisfied! That all being said, I have this weird notion that dessert should only be consumed at night…eating it in the middle of the day just feels wrong (even though it’s probably somewhat better to have it earlier on in the day) ! As a result, after dinner is when my sweet tooth kicks in the most!

Best thing I’ve eaten this week? Well the week is still young but I am going to have to say yesterday’s lunch: brown rice pilaf filled with lots of seafood like shrimp, calimari, and salmon- all topped with hummus :)!
Khushboo Thadani recently posted..HIIT or miss?

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2 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:43 pm

Seriously after dinner is the toughest time for me!! Like right now, I just ha dinner and all I want to do is eat MOREEE and I took in plenty of healthy calories and nutrients
That pilaf sounds tasty girl!

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3 Lyn @ FueledBySalad February 29, 2012 at 5:14 am

Great eats, and yay for listening to your body! I try to listen as much as possible (intuitive eating and all) but sometimes, I falter, of course. I think the best thing I’ve eaten this week was the dinner I just had – brown rice with salsa, chickpeas and scrambled eggs. Storebought salsa, but still. It was the first time I’ve had salsa and it was so good.
Lyn @ FueledBySalad recently posted..WIAW #6 + bar reviews.

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4 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:29 pm

First time with Salsa?! I am so glad you tasted it’s amazing-ness :)

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5 Alexandra February 29, 2012 at 5:54 am

Tessa you’re a rockstar!! Way to listen to your cravings and eat some dang good lookin food! It can be so flipping hard to eat intuitively after going through an ED so I consider this a humongous win for you!
Not only are reese’s pb eggs one of my favorite things on planet earth, but your froyo with the kiwi is kind of calling my name. ;) Best thing I’ve eaten this week was a cashew butter topped sweet tater, it was like I was licking heaven itself haha
Happy WIAW!!
Alexandra recently posted..this is the part of me that you’re never gonna ever take away from me

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6 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Ha yesss the kiwi was a bit of an impromptu addition as I usually just go for berries, but a great choice :)

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7 Kaitlyn February 29, 2012 at 6:14 am

Ohhhh those PB eggs look soooo good! I can’t remember the last time I had them! Good for you!
As I’m learning to listen to what my body really, really wants when I’m hungry, my urges DEFINITELY diminish, and I definitely don’t have that craving/need to binge anymore. Definitely still a work in progress, but we’re getting there!

PS: I don’t know if you read it, but my post yesterday dealt with ED Awareness week…and I gave you a little shout out :)
Kaitlyn recently posted..What I Ate Wednesday #6

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8 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Thank you for that shout out Kaitlyn, as I posted over there, it made me so so happy :)

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9 Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance February 29, 2012 at 6:40 am

Tessa, it’s amazing to think of how far you’ve come since I originally started reading your blog! I mean, listening to your body’s desires for food is something that even people without an ED past struggle with, but look how great you did!

By the way, lovin’ the Reeses eggs ;)
Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance recently posted..Fit Bits: Why Rest?

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10 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Thank you Brittany, I have come a long way and it’s good to reflect on that!

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11 Laura@keepinghealthygettingstylish February 29, 2012 at 6:42 am

I really relate to the having to ‘learn how to eat normally thing’. I had been overweight for the majority of my life and after I’d lost the weight I needed to be healthy, I didn’t stop eating in that same weight loss mode way and hence continued to lose weight and get to a much lighter weight than was right for my body. One of the things I’m trying to do is learn how to eat a normal level which is difficult when all I’ve ever know is either overeating or under eating. Fun and games eh? But I know we’ll both get there! Now I’m all for listening to my cravings!
Laura@keepinghealthygettingstylish recently posted..Bring on spring!

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12 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:32 pm

I know we will get there too Laura, but yeah, I of course can understand and relate to everything you are saying here!

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13 Nikki February 29, 2012 at 7:23 am

Ahhh the holidays Reeses have the best proportions! Yummy! Through Lent I have really been trying to listen to my body and so far I have had one late night binge that I feel fairly guilty about. I have been monitoring what I have been eating and trying to hit all categories to feel more satisfied. It definitely looks like you have some good balance going on! I could use a lesson haha
Nikki recently posted..Baby Tupperware

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14 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Although there was that one time, it sounds like you are doing well with really paying attention to this! Great job Nikki

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15 Gen February 29, 2012 at 7:40 am

I definitely have days where I don’t listen to what my body really wants. It is sooo easy to just revert back to eating “safe” foods.

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16 Heidi @ Idlehide February 29, 2012 at 7:42 am

Mmm, what is it about Reece’s? I’m glad you enjoyed a treat, even if it was just half:) It sounds like you’re doing good!
Heidi @ Idlehide recently posted..Learning to be Kind to yourself

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17 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:35 pm

When I initially read your comment, I thought you wrote, “what IS A REESES?” I was shocked for a second there! Then I read correctly :)

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18 Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count February 29, 2012 at 7:49 am

I think the sweet potato shepherd’s pie looks good!! Some things just don’t photograh well!

I also think you’re doing a terrific job, Tessa at working at this enormous challenge. It sounds like you’re doing so well. You’re analyzing what you do and separating the good thoughts from the bad thoughts along with good choices for you vs. Not good choices for you. Excellent…stick with it!
Fran@ Broken Cookies Don’t Count recently posted..WIAW~Veggie Stock Up!

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19 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Thank you Fran :)

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20 Erica @ For the Sake of Cake February 29, 2012 at 7:55 am

You are not mistaken; those peanut butter eggs are sooo good! Definitely the extra pb! :-)

I think I am pretty good at listening to my cravings… maybe a little too good sometimes!
Erica @ For the Sake of Cake recently posted..February Goals Revisited

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21 Dianne February 29, 2012 at 8:04 am

Wow! This is the complete collection of delicious foods I want, awwwwwwww it was really mouth watery…
Dianne recently posted..1300 numbers

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22 Melissa February 29, 2012 at 8:26 am

Great job really listening–it’s something I’m struggling with right now. With my new nutrition plan, I have to plan ahead of time, and sometimes, I’m not in the mood for my planned snack, but I’m afraid of deviating from the plan for fear that I’ll upset my calorie schedule. I know that structured eating is important, but sometimes it feels too structured! I just need to get to a point where I can trust myself to make good choices both nutritionally and calorically while also feeding my cravings. I think I’ll get there, but right now, food=fear, which is a horrible feeling, as you know. Reese’s egg? No way for me right now. I’m so impressed that you had half, enjoyed it, and stopped. Those things are like a gateway drug for me–any sweets, really. I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to get back to a place of healthy balance by making over the way I eat. It is a process, that’s for sure!
Melissa recently posted..Call for Snacks

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23 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:36 pm

Yes I do know Melissa, all to well :( But you just have to expect that it’s going to be very uncomfortable and then push through it… because we know it’s something positive on the other side!

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24 Cheryl @ happy is the new healthy February 29, 2012 at 8:47 am

You’re doing so well! I have faith that the cravings are going to balance out. Of course, everyone has them, but I think the thoughts that go along with them will lessen the more you do this! Have you read “Intuitive Eating”? It really helped me! And my dessert experiment with the chocolate every day for a while regardless of cravings or not–that helped. This is the first time I feel like I could take it or leave it and I’ve been having an apple for dessert most nights this week, or dried fruit. It’s all getting to the same level for me– not good vs bad vs indulgent.

Your fro yo looks healthy! Seriously. Be proud of yourself. If that’s indulging, you’re still on the healthy path in my eyes. Think about what you COULD have indulged in. Choosing frozen yogurt with fruit is protein, carbs, and antioxidants. You officially rock.

This characteristic: “It is leaving some cookies on the plate because you know you can have some again tomorrow, or it is eating more now because they taste so wonderful.” is still tough for me. I always feel as though I should FINISH my meals, snacks, etc. (and I can’t say I’d EVER be able to skip out halfway on a reese’s — yumm!). I always find it harder to have snacks that are out of the norm in the morning, but I’m living by the motto that if I wouldn’t eat it in the morning, I shouldn’t eat it. Or if I would eat it at night, why WOULDN’T I have it during the day?!

Sorry for rambling, I hope you know you’re doing awesome girl!
Cheryl @ happy is the new healthy recently posted..Bedtime

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25 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:36 pm

You certainly were not rambling Cheryl, thank you for your thoughts and input here! I have read intuitive eating and have done posts on it in the past… it helps me a lot, but I also need to actually implementing what they say in the book haha

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26 Lindsay @ In Sweetness and In Health February 29, 2012 at 9:08 am

I think you did a great job trying to really listen to what you wanted! While you didn’t have the whole reese’s egg, you did have some of it and I’m sure that not too long ago you wouldn’t have had any! So, you’re making progress :). There are definitely times when I struggle to listen to what I really want- I think it can be challenging, but I’m always trying to work on it! Um, and yes, the holiday reese’s always taste better! Holy yum :)
Lindsay @ In Sweetness and In Health recently posted..Cleanse

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27 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Hehe I am glad you agree Lindsay!

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28 Kat February 29, 2012 at 9:33 am

mmmm Reese’s…my favorite!! My mom actually gave me some mini pb cups yesterday to give to my hubby. It was a big bag full that she’d gotten from costco. I ended up snacking on a few around 11am, and totally didn’t feel guilty about it! I say if your eating healthy throughout the day it really doesnt matter when you have your sweet treat, because you know the rest of the day is going to be nutritious!
Kat recently posted..WIAW

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29 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:38 pm

That is wonderful that you didn’t feel guilty! Nice job Kat

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30 CJ @ http://healthy-happy-whole.com February 29, 2012 at 10:11 am

my husband and I just had this conversation the other day; that I am like a little kid having to learn how to eat again! I dont trust my body to tell me what it wants, when it wants it, etc. and often I have a million thoughts about food a day so my cravings are sometimes everything. I find myself building more “snacky” meals because i need to satisfy sweet, salty, crunch, etc. all at one time or i feel like i will binge. of course i do this in safer foods and it is just ridiculous. heaven forbid i have more than ED says is ok!
CJ @ http://healthy-happy-whole.com recently posted..WIAW: Trader Joes Challenges

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31 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:58 pm

I do that too CJ! I cannot just have one food group or flavor… I mean I know this is a healthy thing, but still, a bit obsessive

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32 Lisa ♥ Healthful Sense February 29, 2012 at 10:36 am

The Sweet potato Shepard’s pie looks amazing… definitely a new dinner idea!!
Listening to my body is a daily challenge but so worth it. I love focusing on the intuitive voice of wisdom ;)
Lisa ♥ Healthful Sense recently posted..What I Ate Wednesday: Protein Rich Cocoa Greek Yogurt

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33 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Oh yes, I am sure you would like that for a dinner… and so versatile with the flavorings!

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34 Faith @ For the Health of It February 29, 2012 at 10:39 am

It’s such a seriously relieving, wonderful feeling when you eat “normally”. I remember being in NYC visiting a friend, eating greasy fries and drinking beers during the superbowl playoffs and thinking “wow. It feels SO nice to eat normally, listen to what I want and just go for it!” It’s a feeling I’m trying to recapture more frequently :)

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35 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:40 pm

Oh wow, that is so inspiring for me to read… thank you for telling me this Faith, seriously :)

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36 Dorsa @ Running Thoughts February 29, 2012 at 10:47 am

I think the more you learn to actually listen to your cravings, the better you will be able to understand what your body wants and needs.

I don’t think you will fall into the binge trap. You have to try and get that part of it out of your head, and let yourself enjoy food :)

I listen to my cravings a bit too much sometimes.. but hey, life is short :)
Dorsa @ Running Thoughts recently posted..Midweek Confessions

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37 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:41 pm

I know I do… so so true and working on it for sure :)

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38 Emma February 29, 2012 at 10:53 am

I 100% agree that holiday-themed candies are the BEST, especially reese’s: PB trees, hearts, and eggs, gimme gimme!

I am pretty good at listening to my body when it’s hungry. Sometimes I will wake up ravenous in the middle of the night and have to go get a snack. It’s hard sometimes during the work day because I have to bring all my meals and snacks with me…but sometimes I underestimate how hungry I’ll be! Then I’ll just grab an extra snack when I get home.

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39 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:42 pm

That’s great you are getting better at this Emma! Just have to keep practicing!

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40 Laurel C February 29, 2012 at 10:54 am

It is almost eerie how similar your thoughts around food are to mine. Right now I’m recovering from an Eating Disorder (happy NEDA awareness week by the way), and every meal is still a challenge. I never actually “didn’t eat”, but I was a serial under-eater, eating only my “safe” foods. It’s hard knowing how much I really need to eat, especially given I run 6-8 miles 5 or 6 days a week. How do you estimate your calorie consumption? Listening to my hunger signals is still super hard for me….

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41 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Hi Laurel! I am thrilled to hear you are recovering! On that note though, do you think it’s the best idea or that you should be still running that much while recovering? I am saying this from the perspective of someone who is not exercising… however, I am also still working out during recovery. I want to be able to rest more (mentally be able to) and it’s something I am planning to work on and talk more about. Have you thought about backing down on exercising? Because that is A LOT!
I see a nutritionist who helps me with my calorie needs… I would suggestion using one if you could, so so helpful for me!

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42 Jen @ Whittle My Middle February 29, 2012 at 11:04 am

wow this sounds like a really tough thing to do! If I listened to what I wanted I think I would end up wanting sweets but then I would feel that guilt. I’m sure I would have so many mental battles. Good for you for trying it out.

Those Reece’s PB eggs do look fantastic. I’m a huge fan of mini-eggs.
Jen @ Whittle My Middle recently posted..Weekday Munchies

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43 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:45 pm

mm the mini-eggs are good and it’s been far too long since i have had some!

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44 Amy Lauren February 29, 2012 at 11:17 am

Glad you listened to your body, even if you weren’t always craving healthy foods. Nothing wrong with Reese’s sometimes, and yeah, I think holiday stuff does taste better. There are these chocolate coconut dove eggs for Easter that are delish and my coworker gave me one the other day- love it!

The thing about wandering around the grocery store and not buying anything, but planning out and thinking of meals… I do that a lot. When I moved here and discovered a more upscale grocery store with different foods, I figured maybe it’s because I was from a small town, but you’re right, it might really have something to do with my eating habits. I need to just break down and try a few new things instead of wandering around. I’ve been a little better with that lately and got a coffee the other day.

Your froyo looks delish! Wish we had that here too!

Nothing wrong with craving foods at the “wrong” time of day… love eating breakfast foods in the evenings myself!
Amy Lauren recently posted..Titan Trot 5K, craft show finds, and eating food with a face

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45 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Yes it really must have to do with the disorder… not a “bad” thing necessarily, but it is playing a role. I am glad you are getting better about this though!

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46 Colleen February 29, 2012 at 11:29 am

Tessa, once again you composed another awesome post!!!! Your honesty and ability to articulate your thoughts is so admirable.
Great eats and good job at listening to your body…whether you act on it or not is a mute point at the moment. You are listening and learning!!
I am ok at listening to my body. I eat basically the same foods day after day so I really don’t give my body the chance to crave/experience anything “new”.
In my crazy head there is a “wrong” time of the day for certain cravings and if those thoughts occur I shut them down immediately. I am a stickler for my “food rules”. When I do have a craving at a “proper” time and I act upon it the urge does diminish. I have learned not ignore a craving b/c that leads to overeating and a possible hypoglycemic spell.
Again, thanks for the inspirational post. I am defintely challenging myself to be more self intuitive starting now!

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47 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Thank you Colleen, and as always, thank you for your thoughts here as well!!
I am such a stickler with my food rules too, but I really am learning how to let some of them go… something which I thought I would never ever be able to do
I hope you do start to challenge yourself Colleen :)

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48 Sophie February 29, 2012 at 11:29 am

You continue to inspire me and my recovery. I dream of the day where I can happily eat a reese’s chocolate. I’ve already discovered that my veganism was actually my eating disorder-I now enjoy fish, eggs and goats dairy. I love it!

I was wondering whether you had any tips for regaining period and extra fats. I make sure that each meal I eat has an additional ‘fat’ even if there is fat present in the protein sources etc-any more tips?

I understand if you’d rather not give any tips. Thank you for your inspiration nonetheless!

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49 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Hi Sophie!
Goodness thank you for telling me this! I am truly honored my hard work is impacting you to get better too :)
I still don’t have my period so I can’t give any advice on that.. other than what I know I need to continue doing- healthy fats (a variety too, not just from nut butters), less exercise and weight gain… but FAT weight gain not just muscle. We need fat in order to have hormones and ovulate.. it’s just not going to happen without it. How much does that suck? A lot from the ED perspective but I am trying to get my head around it and continue to get healthy

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50 daybelis March 1, 2012 at 6:46 am

thankfully my period reappeared in my life after 4 yrs of absence.what really worked for me was starting with the birth control pills. I only took them for a month got my period and then got off of it. I began to cut back on cardio and opted for weights and yoga, incorporated a tbsp of olive oil everyday in one of my meals, made sure i had 8 hrs of sleep everyday and ate a bit more of what i was required.(focused alot on eating whole nutrient foods) I am now at my happy weight after being above it ( this caused my period) and now surprisingly with no intention I lost 5 lbs and now I am at my happy weight…hope i helped

51 Laura @ LauraLikesDesign February 29, 2012 at 11:36 am

Ah, I can totally relate to the grocery shopping thing. I do this at many grocery stores and Target–walking around and not buying anything. For me, it’s a total stress reliever!
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52 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:50 pm

It does help with stress… i just wonder how much the disorder plays into it!

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53 Anna @ The Guiltless Life February 29, 2012 at 11:58 am

Ooh good to know about that Balance bar, I’ve seen those! And well done for you on eating all of the Reese’s, even if it was split in two. Hey, those things are SWEET, maybe it was just too much for you in the morning? :) Even if it was a mental thing, it’s still a huge accomplishment.

Also – totally do the grocery store thing too. Guess it’s a food blogger affliction haha!

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54 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:51 pm

Alas, I think it was a mental thing!

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55 Liz @ Southern Charm February 29, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Um Reese’s easter eggs are my favorite too because they have so much pb! I always break the small reese’s cups and don’t eat the top half because I think the chocolate over powers! haha. Glad I’m not the only one who goes weak for them!

And good for you for listening to your body. I feel like a lot of people struggle with this, myself included, so thanks for sharing and being so open about it!
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56 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Hahha I am soo trying that next time I eat one of these!

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57 Ali Mc February 29, 2012 at 12:17 pm

ummmm reese’s eggs! I need them….I think I saw them yesterday but refrained from Easter treats thus far….excluding the cadbury creme eggs I’ve eaten ;)

I love that you are retraining yourself to eat properly and even though I’ve never had an ED I still learn a lot b/c I don’t eat very healthy.

That salad looks so good.
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58 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:52 pm

Oh yes, the creme eggs will be making an appearance in my daily eats soon!

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59 Amy B @ Second City Randomness February 29, 2012 at 12:19 pm

I’ve become much better at listening to when I’m satisfied on most days. However, my weakness will always be dessert. I am well aware that extra cookie will be there tomorrow, but I always want it NOW. Something to practice… sigh…
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60 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:53 pm

To give the cliche phrase… practice makes perfect. I believe it too, and being mindful will help. On that note, there are some days that I find myself not giving (as much) of a crap haha… and those are the times the fear foods are introduced and enjoyed :)

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61 Kat @ a dash of fairydust February 29, 2012 at 12:20 pm

I find it SO incredibly hard to listen to my body… Especially when I am craving foods at the “wrong” time,I doubt my cravings and often try to “cheat” on my body by looking sor “healthier” and “better” options… Which is absolutely stupid because they’re simply not satisfying in that very moment.
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62 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Yes and recognizing this is important and essential to make a change! Remember that for next time you are craving something and else yourself have it. I know it’s scary, but possible!

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63 Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin February 29, 2012 at 12:30 pm

You’re doing awesome with your eating girl! I always feel so much happier and satisfied after a day of truly listening to my body and my cravings. :) But I’m not always the best at it – sometimes I find myself eating what I “should” eat rather than what I truly want. That always leaves me feeling so unsatisfied though!

Sometimes I crave oatmeal/pancakes for lunch or dinner but I always wait until breakfast the next day to eat them. It just seems wrong to me to eat sweet foods at that time of day. It’s such a silly belief that I need to get over! :P

Best thing I’ve eaten recently? My family dinner at Blacktree over the weekend. Nothing can ever trump that restaurant!
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64 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 12:54 pm

That is a silly belief but of course I understand 100% I am glad you enjoyed that meal with your fam :D

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65 MassachusEATS February 29, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Holiday themed treats ALWAYS taste way better! I dunno if its just the novelty of them, if they’re fresher, or what but whatever! Totally jealous right now lol…must get meself to a CVS asap ;)
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66 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Ha yes, so so necessary, go and get one :)

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67 kaila @ healthyhelper February 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm

You are certainly on the road to normal eating again! I think you’re doing a really good job of trying to be more intune with your body and its desires. I can only hope one day (and I KNOW this day will come for you!) that all these actions are just second nature and you will be able to enjoy the food that your body wants and NEEDS without a second thought! Keep it up Tessa!
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68 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Thanks Kaila, so nice dear :)

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69 lindsay February 29, 2012 at 1:31 pm

you know whats sad, is that i our society has totally done away with normal eating. We don’t even know how to do it anymore. Me included! I think this is an honest approach tessa and I admire you for REALLY LISTENING. We move forward with each day that way, right?!
Hugs!
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70 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:53 pm

Ha hey that Yes exactly Lindsay… and yeah, our society is soo out of whack on tons of different levels with eating!

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71 Brittany February 29, 2012 at 1:37 pm

Ahh you are my soul mate. I have been obsessed with holiday themed Reese’s since I could walk..the eggs..the hearts..the trees..SO MUCH thicker and so much tastier. I try to honor my cravings, unless they are late at night. Then I will drink some water and call it a day.
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72 Carrie Purchase@Myhealthyaddictions February 29, 2012 at 1:53 pm

I had half and apple w/pb last night- kinda a wierd time for that meal but it sounded sooo good so I went for it! :)
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73 Bethany February 29, 2012 at 1:55 pm

Just found your blog via WIAW link-up. I appreciate your honesty- it is both encouraging and refreshing. Also, what a great idea to use chobani in tuna salad!

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74 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Thank you for stopping by Bethany!

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75 Alexis February 29, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Delicious looking foods. I find it so hard to just go with the cravings sometimes – especially sweet cravings. I think I denied myself sweets and fats for so long that now I can’t stop myself when I’m around them. I’ve gone from completely restricting myself to not being able to stop myself once I start. UHG the two extremes are exhausting!
Alexis recently posted..Love your body

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76 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:52 pm

They soo are Alexis and that is exactly how I am right now too!

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77 Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile February 29, 2012 at 2:33 pm

Great job on listening to your cravings! I am usually pretty good at that. If I REALLY want something, I will have it. No need to deprive myself but I won’t go crazyyy. Craving chocolate? A piece of dark chocolate usually does the trick for me. And now I’m craving froyo to the max!!! ;D
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78 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:49 pm

Gahh I feel like I am just always craving sweets! I should try the dark chocolate treat

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79 Ashley @ AlmostVegGirlie February 29, 2012 at 2:59 pm

I love that you tried your best to really listen to your body! And having even half of the egg at a time is a huge accomplishment, you should totally be proud of yourself!

Your froyo looks so yummy, it’s been way too long since I’ve had any and that needs to change! I’m the same way with froyo toppings though–I only feel safe with topping mine with fruit but maybe if I really listened to my body I would branch out and try other toppings!
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80 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:51 pm

Let’s both try and challenge ourselves into branching out and trying new toppings for our fro you :)

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81 Ashley @ My Food 'N' Fitness Diaries February 29, 2012 at 3:06 pm

listening to my body and my cravings is definitely still a challenge for me… i continue to work at it though and continue to get better at it. i find that eating every 3 hours or so works best for me and my body.

and by the way, i LOOOOOOOOVE Reese’s Eggs (or hearts, trees, etc.)! i love that they’re so packed with peanut butter! just had one last night for my dessert. yum!
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82 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:44 pm

Oh yes the trees are great!! Somehow I missed them over the holidays… well I will have to make up for that fact with the easter eggs :)

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83 Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen February 29, 2012 at 3:19 pm

Hooray for you! It’s a difficult process, but you are doing so well, it seems. :) [And I am going to have to reinvent a sweet potato shepherd's pie...I've been thinking about it for awhile now...]
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84 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Oh yes give it a try! I bet you would make a great recipe.. and one I could the recreate myself :)

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85 Eleanor@eatinglikeahorse February 29, 2012 at 3:41 pm

I really like those definitions of “normal” eating, especially the one about trusting your body to make up for mistakes, I think that’s really important.
I’m not great at “listening” to what by body needs, because I always seem to crave sweet things! But giving up chocolate for Lent seems to have helped a bit… time will tell :-)
I think just the fact you bought the Reese’s egg (which sounds out of this world!) and had the frozen yoghurt is brilliant, considering that you wouldn’t have done before :-)
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86 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:47 pm

Power to you for giving up chocolate… so impressive girl, I could never!

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87 Eleanor@eatinglikeahorse February 29, 2012 at 3:41 pm

*my body, even!
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88 Jill February 29, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Just a side note, but if you still aren’t’ meeting your needs..well, I can’ help but see that you always eat such small portions (like you could easily double the portions of those meals)…add a whole grain TO your tuna salad (or have the granola bar with it and something else for another afternoon snack, etc)…crumble granola and cookies pieces on your froyo?

Intuitive eating is foreign to me. This is why I’m screwed.

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89 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:08 pm

I know you are right Jill… I don’t deny about not knowing how to get in those calories, but more mentally getting through it… so hard :(

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90 Jill March 2, 2012 at 8:24 am

Oh, I know i know.

You know, if you need to chat to someone, you should…tell your true fears and your true actions (that you don’t show on the blog). You can’t be tough and try to be strong all the time. (even though you do show your struggles, I feel you don’t really share how much less food these mental struggles are making you eat).

91 Laura @ LauraLivesLife February 29, 2012 at 3:55 pm

I’m really struggling with this right now – since I can’t eat gluten, I’ve decided that I need to eliminate all other restrictions I’ve put on my diet (i.e. vegetarian – I’m posting about it officially tomorrow) so that I don’t feel deprived more then I have to. I’m in a viscious cycle where I’m either eating less because of how much ate the night before or feeling hungry because I haven’t eaten enough to compensate for how much I’m running. I know I’m doing better then I was even a year ago, but’s hard to see that perspective when I either feel angry, headache-y, and depressed (read: hungry) or guilty.
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92 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:09 pm

Booo I am sorry you are struggling right now Laura! I am glad you are thinking this through though, I know you will be okay in time with the new diet and changes!

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93 Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction February 29, 2012 at 4:52 pm

That fro-yo is making my mouth water right now as I sit at my desk at work! I haven’t had fro-yo in sooo long!!!
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94 Lily February 29, 2012 at 5:11 pm

That GoBerry looks delicious! I love fro-yo :) Good job on your eats! Keep moving forward, you’re doing great
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95 Marijke February 29, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Maybe you did only eat half of that Reeses but still, GREAT job on listening to your body and allowing yourself a treat. You deserve it!
All of your eats are pack with amazing nutrients, as usual Tessa! You’re setting a fantastic example to people like me who rely on ‘easy’ meals like bagels and snacks… *sheepish grin*
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96 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:10 pm

Awww well thank you Marijke, how lovely of you to say :) I rely on snack foods too though hehe

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97 Margarita February 29, 2012 at 6:19 pm

You are absolutely right on listening to what your body wants to eat. It is not all the time that we want to eat something healthy, even though it is what we all aim for. The real key is moderation… I sometimes deprive myself of the things that I really want to eat because they are unhealthy… and it results in overeating because I keep trying to find satisfaction in other foods. If I just gave in and ate the half a cup of Cheetos that I wanted, then I probably wouldn’t have eaten 20 crackers, then half a chocolate bar, then bread and peanut butter, then some granola… I can be a gross glutton if I deprive myself of what I truly desire.
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98 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 9:09 pm

Yes, moderation is the key, it is an idea that is just so foreign to me! of course I Understand it… but actually implementing it into my daily life.. yeeshe. I will be gluttonous too m’dear, I am so with ya there

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99 Margarita February 29, 2012 at 10:46 pm

Oh, I’m just full of talk about moderation… even though I know it’s the key, it’s hard to keep the practice! It’s comforting to know I’m not alone here. LOL!
Margarita recently posted..Mustard Greens and Pomegranate Salad with Fresh Orange Juice Dressing

100 Simply Life February 29, 2012 at 7:28 pm

I looove eating at the WF bar- and your breakfast looks great!
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101 Sable@SquatLikeALady February 29, 2012 at 7:52 pm

Reading you write all these things is really, really, reeeally shining some light on the fact that I am really fairly sure that Max has an eating disorder. I do not use that term lightly but let’s look at this behavior….

1. He is cutting, ie restricting, and eating the same **safe** foods on a daily basis
2. If he tries to fit an enjoyable food into his daily eats (ie…a mini muffin), he completely loses it and must eat ALL of his cravings RIGHTNOW – he eats until he feels sick. And then rests and eats again. All because “Well I’ve ruined today so I’ve got to eat this stuff today because I can’t have it tomorrow!”
3. The guilt – omg the guilt. He’ll freak out about a ‘slip’ for like ten days!
4. His self-worth is ENTIRELY contained in whether or not he sticks to his diet and how he looks. 100%.

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102 tessa8m February 29, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Oh hrmmm I am sorry he seems to be a bit lost and struggling right now… :( Perhaps talking to him will help?

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103 Jess @ arunningtally.com February 29, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Oh my gosh, that shepherd’s pie looks delicious. What a great idea to make it with sweet potatoes. I think I will try that this weekend.

Huge high-five on the Reese’s. I also still usually only have a piece or two of an individually wrapped candy. What’s weird is that I can have two halves of two candies, but not one complete whole one! Seemingly ridiculous, but it is what it is. I know that 8 years ago, I would have had a panic attack at even a small piece of candy. If the extent of my recovery is that I can only have a piece or two of one, I think it’s still successful. Doesn’t mean I won’t keep trying for more but I’ve got to be proud of how far I’ve come, too, and you can be too. *high five*
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104 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:13 pm

I suppose that is a bit “ridiculous” yet I have done the exact same thing before!! I am glad you have gotten so much better with things like this :)

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105 Scarlett February 29, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Not knowing how to eat “normally” doesn’t sound weird in the slightest to me, having lived with anorexia for so long I basically don’t remember how I ate before the disorder.

You deserve serious props for recognizing the different things going on with your food choices, and being honest–not just saying, “ohhh, hey, I wasn’t that hungry, so I only ate half the Reese’s!”, but acknowleging that the disorder is still present. That’s SO important in getting to a more manageable place!

Keep fighting. :)
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106 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:14 pm

Hi Scarlett, thank you for your thoughts here, and encouragement as well! I can’t lie about the disorder anymore, it only make thing so much worse!

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107 Sally Anne @ PaleoRunnerGirl February 29, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Gosh, Tessa, your honesty never ceases to amaze me! I relate or have related to almost every single aspect of your post. I definitely feel a little guilty when I have many desserts at strange time, even if I am craving them, but sometimes I do and it is delicious and fun! Plus, those PB eggs are DIVINE.
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108 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:15 pm

Ah yes it is fun sometimes! Good to remember :)

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109 Amy @ Turtle-speed Runner February 29, 2012 at 9:01 pm

I always find myself frustrated if I sit there and go, “Now, what do I feel like to eat?” because I can never decide! I find it so much easier to plan something, and if I don’t feel like eating what I’ve planned I’ll eat something else.
I know it will sound BS but I don’t get cravings that often – but when I do I listen to it! My cravings are usually for coffee… and lately fish & chips… but that’s not one I’ll listen to ;P (I think I just need salt)
Amy @ Turtle-speed Runner recently posted..WIAW: Chocolate!

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110 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:17 pm

There are times when I am incredibly indecisive… so annoying. I crave coffee too Amy, so I feel ya ha

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111 Kristabel February 29, 2012 at 9:36 pm

You are such a fighter, and are fighting so hard to become completely free of ED thoughts. You WILL get there because you understand the discomfort that you will have to endure and are forcing yourself out of your comfort zone. I am proud of you.

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112 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:21 am

Well wow Kristabel, thank you :)

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113 caloricandcrazy February 29, 2012 at 9:45 pm

I had a similar experience today with the whole cravings thing. After my midterm, I was really craving a peanut butter odwalla bar, and I was debating on either getting the bar or waiting till I got home to make something (and to not spend money). I decided that I did want the bar more, but when the flavor I wanted wasn’t there, I didn’t “settle” for another flavor. I made myself something at home, but I still craved that choco+pb combo, even after my snack and filling dinner!

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114 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:20 am

Grrr I am sorry that snack did not leaving you feeling fulfilled! It’s nuts how our cravings can control us so so much

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115 Maggie @ Running on Fro-Yo February 29, 2012 at 10:27 pm

I agree- holiday themed foods ALWAYS taste better! I think it’s the cuteness factor :D

I have the same fears of eating “bad” foods earlier in the day…I have no problem having dessert with my boyfriend at dinner, but if someone offers me a cookie at work, heck, even a mini snickers..I feel guilty if I have it!
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116 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:17 am

Ugh it’s such a mental thing with all of this… and quite frankly I am tired of it!

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117 Abby @ Abz 'n' Oats February 29, 2012 at 10:49 pm

Your eats from the day sound so good. I feel the same way when I make a Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s trip at times. I will peruse the isles and think to myself how good something sounds but I will rarely let myself buy it because it usually results in devouring the entire package within a couple of settings. If I am craving sweets in the morning and actually give in to that craving it seems like the rest of the day is downhill from there. I just continue to munch away on sweet things. As for the best thing I have eaten this week, this is weird but the past few nights for my bedtime snack I have been making an egg white crepe topped with stevia, cinnamon, and chunky peanut butter! They are tasty! :)
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118 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:16 am

Interesting… I haven’t really thought about how sweets earlier in the day translate to the rest of my day… I bet I would be craving them even more too! I didn’t notice this time, but yeah, i am sure it happens
That crepe sounds delicious!

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119 Vien @ We Dare Food February 29, 2012 at 10:57 pm

Excellent post as usual! :) Listening to what my body wants was definitely a huge issue for me and I’m sure for most people with ed. During my worst, my cravings for salt would be so strong (dehydration maybe?) that I would just eat salt straight from my salt shaker. And the same with sugar! When I was craving chocolate, I’d munch on grapes. And when my cravings got uncontrollable at night, the ‘binging’ starts. Well, it would just be a blocks of chocolate but it felt like a lot then!

That reese egg looks so cute!! I agree! Holiday-themed snacks or candy do taste better! :D The packaging maybe? or just the holiday spirit :)
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120 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:13 am

Oh yes my cravings have been out of control like that too! It makes sense of course though… we are depriving and our bodies are pissed

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121 Jess February 29, 2012 at 11:00 pm

Do you find that when you eat foods that used to be completely off limits (like Reese’s PB cups) you say to yourself now, “Screw you ED! I deserve this”? The reason I ask is that I’ve found that the more I’ve become comfortable with foods, the more I find that even though I have that healthier relationship with food, I still feel weird for even having any sort of dialogue with or justification for it… I have a major sweet tooth, something I had to curb when I was very sick, but now that I’m pretty much recovered, I worry that I might over eat some foods and justify it by thinking “I missed out on these, and I deserve them now” and… I don’t know. It’s weird. Do you ever feel like that??

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122 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:11 am

Not weird at all… I love this! Sometimes i feel this way.. on the days I am feeling more empowered and really into recovery, then yes, I do feel like saying this. However, there are days that are harder and everything just feels “awful.” I just have to remember how great the good days feel!

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123 glidingcalm February 29, 2012 at 11:03 pm

Sounds like you are really putting some great energy into this and trying hard! That is so admirable!! Sometimes when I am frustrated about beating a bad habit, I remind myself that it takes time.. Just take one step, one meal at a time, and the more days you stack up, the easier it will get! I promise! Why is this? well when you break a habit, you actually have to change the wiring of your brain…. and this takes place at the physiological level and takes time! Your brain is actually changing its synaptic connections in new directions- so it’s normal to not understand why it feels sooo difficult!! It’s called “habit strength”, and is the same reason why your brain has to work harder when you, say, take a different route home than normal. I find if I think of it this way- I am much more gentle to myself!!

That’s another thing! Be kind to yourself for your progress! The more you can stop and pat yourself on the back for each victory (as tiny as it is, or as trivial as it may seem)…the more you build yourself up, and change the way you talk to yourself. That has also really helped me!

Hope you have a wonderful Thursday, girl!

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124 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:18 pm

Ahh thank you for talking about this and the information! It is nice to know that I am not completely losing my mind with how hard this is. It’s scientific evidence apparently :)

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125 Coach Dion March 1, 2012 at 1:03 am

I had PIZZA for dinner…
Coach Dion recently posted..RESTING IS OVER !!!

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126 Tara March 1, 2012 at 6:49 am

Eating unplanned treats was definitely one of the hardest things for me to overcome. But I have this one class where people bring in baked goods ALL THE TIME. I noticed that I was the only one who said “no, I don’t want any, I just had lunch.” – so did everyone else! They’re treating themselves thought. It’s normal. So then I let go and started eating the treats and now it’s my favorite class. I also feel a lot less awkward since they don’t have to say “Are you SURE you don’t want one?” because that was always so uncomfortable!
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127 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 8:09 am

Aww that is awesome, I sooo love to hear about your progress Tara, it always helps me!

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128 smaa March 1, 2012 at 8:38 am

Hi Tessa, I’m a new reader :) I really enjoy your WIAW series, gives it all a twist!
I’m not ED-ed but the stress of life gets to me and since I’m overseas (my family and support systems and all are on the other side of the world) I’m starting to develop neuroses with my food. :/ Especially since I recently put on weight, it annoys me extremely and my reaction has been to restrict, or spit and chew.
I’m glad you made this post as I do realise the same thing. When I eat what my body craves, when I listen truly and fully, I am so much more satisfied on a physical and mental level. Today, I decided I was going to avoid the bourbon biscuit on the table, but that made me binge instead and I just went down to eat it. It’s off my mind now, finally.
I guess our body just knows best. :)

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129 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:23 pm

Hi There!
Thank you so so much for taking the time to read my blog and to share your personal thoughts! I am sorry you are struggling a bit with being over seas, but please do not give in to this, not even in the slightest! Of course that is easier said than done, but trust me, you do not want to go there!
That is fantastic you listened to your cravings that day :)

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130 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table March 1, 2012 at 9:27 am

You are so right about the holiday Reeses – they are the BEST! At least by saving half for later you were able to enjoy it twice. :)

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131 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:24 pm

Ha yesss! Excellent point :)

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132 Jana @ Newly Wife Healthy Life March 1, 2012 at 9:55 am

You are doing a great job girl! That frozen yogurt looks amazing :-) I used to be really bad about listening to my body, but now I do a better job since I realized the only thing that stops my cravings is having a little of what I am craving. For example, if I want a cookie, a graham cracker or a granola bar isn’t going to conquer that craving. Then I would probably eat the graham cracker, granola bar, and still end up having the cookie too! However, if I just eat the cookie, my cravings are usually met and one is enough!
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133 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:25 pm

Mhm yep, that is so true, I have done that before! Trying to avoid eating something and then having double what I meant to eat

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134 Kris | iheartwellness.com March 1, 2012 at 12:47 pm

Ahhh I LOVE your snack :) HAHA!!! Goodness, March to me is all about the upcoming chocolates for easter!!

You are so amazing, I just want to tell you that :) Way to be YOU!

xxoo
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135 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:30 pm

Heheh thank you Kris :D

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136 Becca March 1, 2012 at 1:10 pm

I think this is so hard. I counted calories way too obsessively for too long (and kept them too low). Now, I can force myself to eat more. But I cannot erase the knowledge of how many calories are in what I’m eating, and I cannot seem to adjust back to normal. Sometimes I legitimately wonder if there really is any going back…my brain is always working when I’m eating, and when I look at people around me I can see it isn’t the same for them.

What’s good is that I’ve acknowledged that these “normal” people have a way better system than I do. They eat what they want, when they want, without much of a concern (and, wouldn’t you know it, most of them are still in great shape and “thin”). So, I can see that their system works. I just can’t stop my mind and adapt to their system, yet!

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137 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:26 pm

I can relate to you so much with this Becca… I wonder if it will ever go back to the way it used to be with eating…
I guess we just have to keep on trying!

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138 Julia @ girl with a stethoscope March 1, 2012 at 1:47 pm

It’s really nice to see that you are actually listening to your body and giving it what it really wants (instead of constant depriving). I think this is SO huge Tessa because before, you were always saying “no, no, no” which probably led you feeling depressed about the whole situation. Now, even if you give your body just half of what it wants (such as half of the reese’s pb cup), it’s still a BIG deal. So proud of you girl!

xoxo
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139 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:28 pm

Aww wow Julia thank you :)

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140 Chelsea @ The Nut Butter Runner March 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm

I’m okay at listening to my cravings – because if not, they don’t go away and I just end up going crazy on the food I wanted before. So, instead of eating cottage cheese and fruit or cereal when I’m craving chocolate and nut butter, then going crazy on the chocolate and nuts later, I add the chocolate and nut butter into my snack and I’m a happy camper. I totally just figured this out, but I’m still learning and everything is a work in progress! Before I came to college, I had no idea how to eat and ate too much, then I was in the weight loss mindset, and now that I’m at a good weight for my performance, it’s so different to learn how to balance my food! I think you’re doing an awesome job navigating your nutrition, and you’ve come so far! Great job Tessa and great post :)
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141 tessa8m March 1, 2012 at 9:29 pm

It sounds like you are doing so well Chelsea! Quite helpful for me to hear and I am proud of you girl!

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142 Kaitlyn@TheTieDyeFiles March 1, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Awesome that you’re tuning in to your cravings and needs! SO jealous of your WF hot bar. I love sweet potatoes! I’m eating a sweet tater dish as we speak :)
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143 Rach March 1, 2012 at 9:04 pm

Good for you for listening to your body, girl!
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144 Paulina (One Smile Ahead) March 1, 2012 at 10:26 pm

You did awesome with listening to your body! :] I definitely try to listen to my cravings. It wasn’t always so though. I thought that if I skipped my salad or something I’d go junk food crazy, but that’s totally not the case! The other day I realized I hadn’t eaten any veggies all day, and as a result I was having this huge craving for fresh greens when it came to dinnertime! :D It feels so much better to give your body what it wants. It personally leaves me satisfied and happy. Keep listening, Tessa! It’s always easier to try to shut your body up instead.
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145 Living, Learning, Eating March 2, 2012 at 7:55 am

Your eats look delicious! I just tried Balance Bars and love them. :) And froyo – there has been a lot of froyo in my life lately! I’m not complaining. :P
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146 Healthiful Balance March 2, 2012 at 10:31 am

Sometimes I dont fully listen to my bodies cravings, I’m still working on that! It has gotten waayy better over the last weeks though.

Props to you for listening to your body..thats great!!!! :)
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147 nikkilao March 22, 2012 at 4:55 am

Whew! I crave for goberry yogurt. I would like to try Blue berry and kiwi yummy. Cut grease where can i buy that!
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