Where to start when the idea of self love feels impossible

A guest post by: Claire LeGresley, Registered Holistic Nutritionist

Like so many others, I spent years at war with the closest thing to me. I learned self-criticism at an early age, having grown up in front of a mirror as a dancer. Since my body type didn’t fit the mold of a classical ballerina, I hated and treated it as though it had betrayed me.

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Instilling the Message of Health at Every Size at the Heart of Motherhood

By Crystal Karges

 

“Giving birth and being born brings us into the essence of creation, where the human spirit is courageous and bold and the body, a miracle of wisdom.” – Harriette Hartigan

Today’s mothers are faced with intense scrutiny when it comes to their bodies and appearances.  Raising children in our current culture has taken a dramatic shift in the age of social media and with the Internet at our fingertips.  The reality is that the postpartum period for mothers is perhaps one of the most vulnerable and sensitive times for a woman.

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Being in Your Body

By Rhea Bergmann

How did we get to this point of being so utterly obsessed with our bodies – yet completely disconnected from the only home we will ever have?

Many of us are yet to fully realize that body dissatisfaction arises as a culturally and socially developed phenomenon, which is shaped by a dominant story. Body hate is a product of social constructs – it is a learned state – it isn’t with us from birth but thrust upon us as we grow. It is a product of living in an environment which places emphasis and high value on the outward appearance. That prioritizes how we look above all else and even deceptively convinces us that our entire worth as a human being can be concentrated down to the size of our bodies.

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Intuitive Everything: A Crossfit Coach Weighs in on ED Recovery

By Kortney Karnok

Find Kortney at Fueling Strength on Facebook or  Instagram @fuelingstrength

Today I lifted weights again for the first time in months. I snatched*. I squatted. I even took my shirt off because I was hot, sweating, and I will no longer be confined by rules that say only a six-pack is worthy of comfort in the gym.

Granted I was alone in the gym, but it’s still progress. Would I have rushed to cover up with my shirt had someone come in while I was training? My instincts would have said, “yikes! hide!” but my resolve and determination to get over my fear of exposure, my fear of being revealed as “not perfect”, my fear of judgement, my fear of being “not good enough” will only be tackled head on. And so, I would remain vulnerable and topless.

(ummm, with a sports bra!)

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Reflecting on Recovery: A look in to this client’s 3 year journey to heal from an eating disorder

When I look at where I was and where I am now, I know there is hope for anyone.

When you’re isolated in the prison of your own eating disorder it may be all to easy to hear thoughts about how you’ll never get better. How it feels completely impossible, and the stories of others who have recovered, absolutely must be – MUST BE – fabricated.

I’m sharing Mallorey’s story with you for this very purpose – to give clients, as well as nutrition therapists, a glimpse in to the reality of the struggles so often faced, and the reality of recovery.

Mallorey was someone I worked with for a long period of time and it was an honor to be a part of her journey. Now, after diligently pursuing and fighting for her own life, free of an eating disorder, she is a therapist helping others [chills and tears welling here]. It’s a message like this, that gets me to my core, and reminds me, as the nutritionist, that patience, persistence and the right relationships will get you to recovery.

Q and A with Sumner (RD) and Mallorey (past client):

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Intuitive Eating Can Change Your Life

Imagine not living every day with 70, 80 or even 90 percent of your thoughts centered around what you can or can’t eat, how bad you were the day before, or your morning weigh in. For some of you, you really can’t even imagine. But try…

In this imaginary world, you wake up and you think about your day, not your size. You have thoughts of what you want and need to do. What you’re looking forward to, or what important thing is happening. You’re not beating yourself up, you’re not feeling disgust, and you’re just – you.

When it’s time for breakfast you’re willing and even happy to find something delicious and satisfying to eat. You feel glad that you’ve learned to eat to fuel your body and that what you eat tastes good to you. You’re trusting and confident that it’s okay to eat and you don’t have to overthink it anymore.  There is more to life than food and weight – so much more.

I’ve been learning about, teaching, and living Intuitive Eating for about a decade. To me, and to others I know who eat this way, it’s THE game changer for anyone who lives the diet cycle.

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The One Key Element to Loving Your Relationship With Food

You can have all the information in the world about what nutrients you need, what a balanced plate looks like, and how many grams of protein your body probably needs for fuel and still struggle with your eating. That’s because there is one key element to how you eat that will help you have a peaceful relationship with food for good. Notice I said, HOW, you eat…not WHAT you eat. I am a huge fan of focusing on the how and not the what of eating. Fact: you can binge on cherries; a food full of vitamins, fiber and nutrition – but it is the binge itself, the HOW, not the what, that matters and makes you feel terrible.

It’s how you eat, not what you eat, that matters most.

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Why Dieting Holds You Back from Life

There is a very simple explanation for how dieting keeps you from living a full life. In one glance, we can see that dieting keeps you trapped in a cycle – that leaves very little time, space or energy for other, more fulfilling things. Take a look at the Savvy Girl Guide to Eating diet cycle.

sg_dieting-cycle-004

I know that when I was a chronic dieter which led to an eating disorder I was pretty much always caught up in one of three places.

  • Diet phase: Intense focus on restricting (counting calories, planning my food and exercise, and being hungry)

  • Overeating phase: shamefully eating or bingeing because I couldn’t take the restriction any longer

  • Guilt phase: recovering from my cheat or binge and overcome with guilt, remorse and hopelessness with the thought of starting over.

How can you possibly have real room in your life for other people, goals, emotions and experiences with so much internal battle looming at all times?