It was just over a year ago when I had my first #foodfreedom epiphany. It took me 30 years to finally have this moment, and MAN was it powerful. For me, this was a huge mental shift. I’m sure people had explained or tried to teach it to me before, but I probably wasn’t listening, or I was too set in my old ways of thinking to consider or implement it. Or can we say I was downright SCARED of thinking that way. What would happen if I stopped controlling every single thing I put into my mouth? Would I go bonkers and eat the whole house and then go get pizza and ice cream? Maybe. Did I not trust myself? Yes. I’m not 100% sure the exact reasons, but I know I had been stuck in this way of thinking for a long time and it was not helping me reach any of my goals. I needed to get over myself.
I was pregnant with Thor and working with an amazing prenatal coach, Jessie Mundell. When I first started working with her, she asked me what my nutrition practices were. I told her that I had been in a constant state of flux between trying to “look the part” of a coach, gaining weight, losing weight, and just really being in a general mental state of hatred for my body. For years. At that time, I was “on the macros” meaning I was weighing and measuring everything that I was eating. I was weighing myself each week to see my progress. Like I’ve said before in previous posts, the only thing I was concerned about was the weight on the scale. For so many years, I let that dictate my attitude, my self worth, my workouts. When I look back, I can see that the scale was essentially running my life. And now I was pregnant. And the scale was not responding the way I had wanted it to…
Then Jessie asked me, “WHY do you need to track your macros right now?”. It was a fantastic question. I had never really assessed the true reasons why I had needed to do it. And when I did, I realized that I had flushed so much of my happiness, talent, uniqueness down the toilet based on whether or not I ate a certain number of grams of protein, carbs, or fat per day. Tracking made me feel like garbage. And it made me HATE myself, my CURRENT self. I also thought about the long term ramifications of eating this way. Do I want Thor to see me weighing and measuring all of my food? Do I want him to see me stepping on the scale each week, because I am not yet ‘perfect’? The answer was obviously, no. I needed to make a serious lifestyle change.
As scared as I was at the time, I gave up the macros, I gave up the tracking, I stopped getting on the scale. I made the doctors office weigh me backwards because when you’re pregnant and you’re gaining weight, WHO CARES!!! Your body is doing an amazing thing by creating a human being. I kept reminding myself that my purpose is so much greater than the weight on the scale.
This shift in mindset was incredibly helpful. Now my workouts were specifically tied to function; being able to move without pain in pregnancy, keeping all parts of my body strong and balanced, and prepping for labor. My nutrition was now simple. Eat what tastes good and stop when you’re full. Does that look different each day? Absolutely. It cannot be ‘controlled’ or prepped for. It just happens. And that’s okay. Like Jessie says, #itsjustfood Nothing more, nothing less. The freedom gained from this realization has fueled so much internal happiness and confidence I had been longing for, for many years. Not to mention, tons more mental space for creativity and compassion.
Postpartum, I keep the same mindset around food. Eat what tastes good and stop when you’re full…and sometimes when you’re overfull, or underfull. It really doesn’t matter. Its all about how you feel. Do what makes YOU feel GOOD!
Here are my tips: Stop following anyone on social media that makes you feel inadequate or tells you that you need to eat a certain way or be different than you currently are. You are a fantastic human being right now. No need to change. You have permission to say no thank you and just do you. DO NOT feel like you need to do any diet, any cleanse, or any 21 day ‘fix’ on January 1st.
Start following women who practice body positivity and compassion. Some inspirational females that I look up to and follow in Instagram are @jessiemundell, @brianna.battles, @sarevance, @thefuckitdiet, @jillfit, @iamerinbrown.
And finally, if you are really concerned about ‘the weight’ either pre or post natal, I want you to consider the following advice from one of my coaches @brogers018, “The weight will come off when the time is right.” WOAH! Powerful. #foodfreedom