I am a personal trainer, but I am a human being, and I am far from perfect! I have decided to write this blog post today to share something that might seem foolish to some of you, but I have struggled with this my whole life: eating based on my emotional state. This means I eat when I am stressed, when I am avoiding doing or saying something, when I am feeling depressed, when I am feeling crappy about my body, when I feel like I deserve food because of a workout, and many other times! I work as a trainer and understand that FOOD IS FUEL and not meant to drive our emotions, yet it is still my greatest challenge.
I seemed to be doing pretty well for a few months because I had lost weight and was feeling great, looking good, and living off pure WILLPOWER J Last week all my good work started crumbling away. It started on Wednesday night when I went out for a delicious raw vegan dinner, which I justified eating the whole meal. I knew I had started a night of emotional eating by this point. On my way home I picked up two pieces of candy from the store- when I walked in the house Kyle looked pretty surprised- I never eat candy! But two pieces wasn’t enough. Even though I felt great about not giving in to a tub of ice cream or something else (I only walked away because a stranger in the corner store commented on the fact that I was standing in the aisle staring at the Hagen Daaz and I got embarrassed!), my urges weren’t satisfied. Now some of you might not want to continue reading, and I am even embarrassed to type this, but I proceeded to have about 5 small bowls full of almonds covered in oil, cocoa and chia seeds. DISGUSTING! I was just pouring the olive oil on, while Kyle watched and questioned what the hell I was doing. I knew that I couldn’t stop that night and it didn’t bother me too much, sometimes when I give in then I can realize it’s an isolated event and go another few weeks/months without another one. I did stop after a few bowls, but unfortunately by the weekend it all repeated itself. I had a rough day on Saturday- I was denied an awesome position shadowing a really good trainer in Vancouver, and was feeling emotional before I met for a coffee with a friend and took a friendly comment the wrong way. Feeling sorry for myself I came home and decided to cook dinner, even though I had plans with a friend to go out. Rather than reaching out and talking to someone I managed to cook up a whole chicken AND EAT THE WHOLE THING!!! JESUS! Who the hell can eat a whole chicken at once? At least I had 4 separate servings and didn’t throw it all on one plant and carve it up, but I don’t know what’s worse. I realized I was eating to stuff away the obvious sadness I had from a disagreement I had had with Kyle that morning followed by my other two set backs. It didn’t stop there….the next day I did my first aid course all day and there were these friggin Dad’s Oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips for free. So all day I told myself “that stuff is disgusting, it’s processed, you don’t need that, you can have something healthy and tasty when you get home”. My mentality didn’t work for me again- when I got home my biggest weakness treat was waiting for me- Almond butter! And you can probably guess what I did…..polished off the whole big jar. I felt like after this point I “got it out of my system”…..whatever emotions I was trying to avoid/mask etc were successfully pushed down……which isn’t a good thing obviously.
The reason why I am writing about this is because I realize it’s not normal to eat this amount of food at one time and that I obviously turn to food for many of the wrong reasons. After talking with a few friends on Wednesday they mentioned I should blog about it. If it’s not food- there are many other ‘vices’ that people have rather than dealing with their emotions: drinking (which I used to do in excess, but thank god have kicked that habit), smoking, exercising (also used to be an addiction of mine), sleeping, having sex, etc….anything rather than journaling/meditating/reaching out for support- and dealing with the emotion. I feel like even though I am a personal trainer and know my exercise inside and out, emotional eating will always be a challenge of mine. I hope that this makes me more of a relatable trainer for many people to work with. Each time I stuff down emotion with food I learn from the experience, and I like sharing this with others. This past week I know I was eating like I was because I have just started my own self employed business. I am stressed, worried, excited, and not sleeping very much because I am focused on some pretty huge goals. I know that I need to take it easy, schedule in time for myself, schedule in time to cook and portion proper meals, take time to sleep and relax and enjoy life, and stop basing my feelings and food choices on how I am feeling about myself and my body.
I am paying for my choices now, as I sit here a week later feeling bloated and disgusting. All I can do is continue to eat as properly as I can, and continue to talk to friends, family, and Kyle about this crazy food addiction I have going on!
Thanks for reading, I know I kind of ramble on, but it helps me, it feels like I am journaling and accepting the challenges I am having. I hope by writing this on the internet I can find people that can relate to me J
And now I am off to enjoy my Chai tea and small single serve portion of peanut butter. These are two things I try not to have in my regular life because I don’t think they are extremely healthy, but use them as a crutch instead of going into another binge!