Last night, while I was watching the Bachelor ATFR, scrolling through Instagram and eating my Natural Calm Gummies, just to assure you my life is riveting, something caught my attention. It wasn’t Arie, proposing to bachelorette #2 minutes after admitting he rushed into a proposal with bachelorette #1. No, it was on Instagram. A fellow RD was talking about travel eating. Our March Newsletter is all about healthy travel, so I was curious what she had to say. The gist of the post was that this person, whose posts I love, said that she went away and ate what she wanted, without negativity. She didn’t feel great, she referred to “pain” but this allowed her to “be present” and not obsessed with food. Hmm (cue emoji with finger on face contemplating), I thought about it and realized I didn’t agree.
I commented, “that’s so interesting, I feel I’m more present when I veer less. For me, it’s more distracting to feel poorly.” This RD had mentioned veering and feeling poorly but it being worth it. “Just chiming in, obsessing less is the key, no matter what that looks like.” And in no way do I want to call this person out (nor do I know the specific circumstances), sharing what works for you is fantastic. But I realize what I believe and feel and do at Foodtrainers may run counter to the prevailing social media messaging of “there are no bad foods”, the anti diet movement I spoke of on Monday and unconditionally loving my body. I haven’t been able to articulate this well until I read this article on Byrdie’s the thirty. I printed this piece, like on paper, and plan to reread it and put it in our waiting room at Foodtrainers. Please, when you’re done here, go and read it, I seriously could quote the whole thing.
Basically, the author is talking about on one hand being in full support of body positivity and all it entails. However, loving yourself all the time is difficult. “Mixed in with all the well-meaning, self-confidence-boosting, body-positive rhetoric lies an often forgotten truth: Unconditionally loving your body is difficult, no matter the circumstances.” I related to this so much. Often, while doing the Insta scrolling I mentioned above, I think “what if I don’t love my body today?” I’ll quote the article since it says this better than I can, “I feel good about myself and my parts in a way I never thought I would again. But insecurity and anxiety still live and breathe inside my body.” For some of us, that insecurity needs a space too.
I was ill last week, I discussed that Monday so I will not elaborate. I couldn’t eat (not even coffee!) much and I lost weight. Prior to getting sick I was on the upper end of my five-pound happy place. No matter what your range, we all know when we’re not feeling confident. Well, guess what? I’m healthy again but I will not lie and say 5 pounds lighter, I feel better. I’m not thinking about what to wear, I’m actually thinking about weight LESS. Going back to the byrdie article, “You can be a champion for body positivity even if you sometimes wish you looked different in a bathing suit. The two are not mutually exclusive. You’re human, and either extreme will never make you happy.”
I just typed, and erased, “if you think this sounds shallow or vain” but I know, from years of these conversations in my office and on the blog, that size and shape is not purely vanity. And changes to physiques can affect all areas of life from sex to parenting. If feeling good for you means total acceptance of your body as is, amazing. But if you wish to lose weight, gain muscle, firm up or whatever thait is for you, that’s also great. And, if you’re reading this thinking I’m unevolved, I admitted to watching the Bachelor, I’m fine with judgement.