Story Time: Diet and Fitness

Hello everyone. Today the post of my diet and fitness background is coming. I was raised on a standard European diet with meat and dairy or let´s say on a standard Austrian diet but we always where on the healthier side. My mom always cooked on herself we never ate fast food or one of those microwave food. Of course I sometimes had sweets but never too much. We always used lots of fresh fruits and veggies and during summertime we had our own fresh veggies. But as it is the case with so many teenage girls when I was about 13 or 14 I even don’t know it exactly but I believe it was at the beginning of my teenage years I start caring about my weight ore better about the weight that other people have. For example models and actresses I found beautiful or those who everybody said that they were pretty and I got obsessed with it. I researched their weight and I recognized that I was heavier than most of them and then it started that I don’t saw myself the right way in the mirror. I just saw what was wrong with my body and what I did not like and what looked different then on the bodies of those celebrities. I also wanted to look good to attract boys and I started to diet. This was a bit hard because my mom always where at home and cooked, packed my lunch etc. I think it began that I just threw away my school lunch. Later when I recognized that everything has calories, I started counting. But that did not help as much as I wanted. I started working out with the help of YouTube videos. The combination of working out and just eating about 800 calories a day aided in weight loss. Even though I hadn’t a proper form with the exercises I did because of my very low energy levels I started to work out every day. The number of the scale went down and I got obsessed with what I can do. I wanted to eat less calories but this was gladly not possible because of my lovely mom. She always tried to make food I like and I did not want her to see what I was doing so I always had my lunch and my dinner at home. I just skipped my school food and my dinner where mainly veggies and not a lot of it. But however it saved me because otherwise I would probably ate just an apple a day or something like that. With time even my class teacher noted my weight loss. She talked to my mom and also sent me to the school doctor. At the doctor I had to weight myself and she told me that I have to come back every now and then and when my weight is dropping even more she will talk with my mom too. So I tried to eat and drink more on the day before I had to check my weight. I think at this time it went hard for the first time that I ate so less and I wanted to eat more for the very first time. Before I was just “happy” (not that I was really happy at that time of my life) about what I could do and I did not care about the food or the hunger inside of me.  So sometimes I would start binge eating.

And then I wanted to go to Scotland for my internship but before I could go one of my teachers wanted to visit the doctor with me to check if I was strong enough to go. But at this time I already weighted a little bit more because of my binge eating so the nurse told me that it would be ok if I feel good enough. I told her that I am ok but inside of me I was broken because I’ve lost control over my body. The weight was going up not down and I cried nearly every day. I honestly was feeling down and depressed the entire time. Later I realized that this may also be because of the lack of vitamins and my low calorie intake but at this time it doesn’t matter. I would weight myself everyday at least two times (most of the time more often). I set myself a weight goal and I did not want to go over it even not in the evening. (I want to address here that it is completely normal that our weight is going up in the evening!) I was stressed the entire time and I started to be depressed even more I had terrible thoughts but the thought of me going to Scotland was holding me up. During the time I was in Scotland I started to binge eat even more. I had to cook on myself and I was completely on myself so I could easily binge in private. While I was eating I felt good but as soon as I stopped I felt guilty and wanted to work out just to burn the consumed calories and more. I want to address that even during this time of my life I tried to eat very healthily. I still did not eat any junk food but I was eating way too much. I stuffed myself until I felt ill (sometimes it also was kind of a self punishment) but I think I needed it. I went through the extreme with eating less so maybe I needed to go to the extreme in the different direction. I also hadn’t the chance to weight myself in Scotland. I would have a scale but I couldn’t find out how it works because it was a much more high tech one then at home but on one hand I felt really good not weighting myself. On the other hand it was even more difficult because I always thought I’ve gained way too much weight. I measured myself but at this time this didn’t mean much to me I just cared about the weight. And even though my measurements did not really went up all that was counting was the weight that was going up. When I went back home I had gained about 10 kilograms. And this was huge for me normally I would stress about every gram that was going up. But this was the first time that I did not get depressed because of it like crazy. Since this time I was in conflict with not caring about the weight and just enjoying life and about getting depressed with stepping on the scale and seeing the gained weight. But I had to weight myself if I would go too long without weighting myself I would went mad and angry. Because it would be like you wouldn’t know if someone very important to you was still alive. I know I know (now) that this is a stupid comparison but it really felt like the world would end if I wouldn’t step on the scale. But I think about that time I stopped weighting myself multiple times a day (I just weighted in the morning and on “strong” days when I would buckle in the evening). Also the binge eating did not stop. (My body was in starving mode so he always sent the signal that I should eat when I am near some food.) I had some “good” days where I did not eat much and nearly the same amount of “bad” days where I stuffed myself. Of course it might felt different because at this time I would normally eat not as much but trust me I ate way too much and I ate all the food I liked but I labeled as “bad” and I had banned them.

In October after coming back I decided to tell my mother that I want to become vegan. I researched a lot on it since I stumbled over a video of Bonny Rebecca on YouTube and since then eating  made sense in the first time in years. It sounds so true what I found out about it. We do not have to eat animals and of course why should be cow’s milk good for us? (I can make an entire post on veganism too if you want? Please let me know.) And at this time also important for me was that all of those vegans who I watched on YouTube where thin they all lived a High Carb Low Fat (HCLF) diet. I cannot remember when exactly I stopped eating meat but I think at this time I was for about 5 years vegetarian so everything made sense. Even though my mom wasn’t happy about it at the beginning she always supported me in what I was doing. And with time she got used to it. Giving up all dairy products wasn’t that bad but I had to find some alternatives that’s probably the reason why I wasn’t eating that healthy at the beginning. I ate a lot of the same food over and over again. I had no variety in my diet because I had to find out what the hell I can truly eat. Because in nearly every product you buy are animal products. But this doesn’t matter it felt like I could eat without guilt. It felt good. I could taste food again and it tasted good. It was enjoyable and it was fuel. I stopped counting calories and learned to listen to my body. I realized that I had more energy and it was still a long journey for me even after going vegan but it was going better every day.

At first I ate very basic vegan diet lots of the same stuff, then I started to eat mostly fruits and some veggies. At this time I was kind of afraid of starch. Which I learned later isn’t a bad thing. At first I felt really good on this diet because my body was getting rid of all the animal products in his body and was taking all the vitamins it could get. It was kind of a Detox. It also was great because I really could stuff my face with fruits all day long so my mind could switch what it was thinking about eating a minimum on calories. Anyway later I started to eat a more balanced vegan diet. I introduced starch and noodles etc. in my diet and tried what would work for me. What made me feel good? I did not care about if I was HCLF or whatever I just tried to eat food that made me feel good and gave me energy. I allowed myself to eat less healthy things every now and then which is way better because that way I don’t have the urge to binge on something.

I also do have more energy for a proper workout now. I concentrate on training for strength and for defined muscles as well as on a healthy but balanced diet. I feel like I am still a bit on my way with learning about food and I have to say that I had not counted calories for a period of time but now I do it again but rather to watch if I eat enough calories. I also count my macros and the important vitamins my body needs. Nowadays I am nearly 20kg heavier then on my lightest days but guys I have to mention that I feel waaaay much better now. I have so much more energy. I workout 4 days a week intensive strength, two days lighter and more cardio based workouts and on my rest day (I am a person who cannot stand still) I do some yoga. While I am at home I also use my time in the morning to work out a bit. So I run 3 times a week and 3 times I do about 20 minutes of yoga (it depends on my mood). And on my rest day I simply stretch for 10 minutes. I also started to learn a bit of calisthenics but I am at the very beginning of it.

I really hope that you liked this post. It is just my personal experience and it is really difficult to pack all those feelings and thoughts in a post but I hope you got a little impression how I felt during this time and I really hope that this may help someone out there. Then you have to know: it doesn’t matter how lonley and helpless you feel right now it can get better someday. Of course it is hard work to get out of there but it is really worth it. The world may be cruel but there are so many beautiful things to explore. You can do it. Search for help. Your parents, teachers, sisters or brothers, your friends or even I, we all want and can help you!
Oh guys I thought about a What I eat in a day post? Would you like that? And please if you have any questions on this post or this topic in general just ask me in the comments or anonymous via email. (itssarahjulia@gmail.com) also let me know what you want to read next.

 

Lots of love
XOXO Sarah

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