When I began to write this post, I felt somewhat guarded as the subject of food is somewhat sensitive not only to me but to many people. But I’m going to say forget that and speak very honestly.
My food and I have a relationship somewhat similar to a very hormonal teenager...emotional moments, a dash of ignorance, and a whole lot of experimentation. While I do not believe my relationship with food is completely perfect, I think it’s an impressive improvement from where it used to be *raises the roof*. I’ve done the counting calories, restricting calories, binging of food, and most everything in between. Ultimately, there was an undertone of guilt and negativity surrounding what should’ve been an enjoyable experience and in that moment, I assumed that’s just how I should feel about food. I assumed the best way to be content about my eating habits was to eat a salad... or something green... or leafy... so really only salads. While salads are great, I just don’t think that nourishing your body should be so damn emotional. I can sit here and make educated guesses as to why I think a lot of people, especially women, have this negative relationship with eating, but I think it’s better to show you how I changed the salad cycle.
I’m not a nutritionist by any means but keeping track of my macronutrients- protein, carbohydrates, and fats- has become a really great way to make sure I’m filling my body with what it needs to be full and healthy rather than focusing so much on calories. I currently do not strictly count my calories but try to keep my macros proportional to how hard I train. This keeps me from under-eating and allows me to gain muscle and lose fat. If you want more information or a breakdown of macronutrients click here.
I think there was a very cognitive shift for me when I changed the way I ate. While macro counting has helped me a great deal, I had to change my thoughts about food. I had to love what I was putting into my body. Our bodies are designed beautifully to adapt and to grow. I think the kindest and most loving thing to do is to fuel and nourish it with the best things to live out what it was designed to do. And if my body could use a very large maple donut after a hard workout then me and my body will do that. In moderation and timed well, treating myself is not bad. Stressing about eating is far more harmful to my body than one donut.... fine…. TWO donuts, every so often.
Like everything in life, your mind, body, and spirit must be aligned and your connection with food should be no exception.