It was not that long ago I would have eaten my favorite (terrible for me) food to help me deal with whatever emotional stress I was dealing with at the time…
I struggled with the idea that I was an emotional eater…
I didn’t want to accept the fact that I used food as a crutch to get me through hard times…
Food was my friend! It brought me comfort, it tasted good, and it eased whatever pain I was going through. It was my favorite coping mechanism. But not long after eating, I felt GUILT. It was awful! It took me so long to truly realize and understand all these elements and put together a better way.
I have done a lot of work on myself in the last year. I’ve read a lot of books, spent a lot of time learning about food and how REAL food helps my body. I’ve succeeded and failed (a lot) Now I know how to listen to my body better and avoid certain foods because they make my body feel awful or sluggish. I even discovered that cabbage gives me migraines! (who knew?)
One of the biggest things I’ve discovered? I like to run! ok, I know…not many people like to run, but I’ve found joy in it. It is an amazing feeling to set a goal with my running and accomplish it! It’s an awesome rush to cross a finish line and beat your previous time! I never dreamed that one day I would enjoy running, but here I am!
We had a crazy, busy, stressful week where I spent most of it as a single parent because my husband had a lot of meetings in the evenings. It happens sometimes, and we were doing pretty good handling it. He asked me if there was something I wanted to do on Saturday on my own since I probably needed a little time away. My very first response was, I want to run! I want to go run and not worry about how long I’m gone. I wanted to hit the trail and just GO. This shocked me when I thought about it later…when did I change into someone who WANTED to run?!?
Well, I went! I decided to run 5 miles. It was a little longer than I normally run, but I have an 8k race coming up on Memorial Day, and I needed to get a practice run in. It was hard! My knees hurt, my back hurt, my toes even started to hurt…but I just kept telling myself, you can do this! You can achieve this! Don’t give up! And I didn’t. I hit 5 miles and it was AMAZING! I was so glad I didn’t give up, and so thankful that I didn’t quit when it got hard.
This is my change of pace. This is the new me. No longer do I need food to help me get through the hard times in my life because I have figured out healthier ways to handle the blows life brings my way. No longer do I need to be an emotional eater!
How do you handle your stress? What helps you when going through a lot of emotions? Do you eat, run, meditate, draw a bath and turn on soft music? How do you deal with life’s hard times? I’d love to hear your ideas.
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