I have never been diagnosed with an eating disorder, but deep down I always knew I had a problem.
So this is how it all begun. Late 2016 I was moving less and eating more… Well, not eating more food, eating more junk food. This, as you have probably imagined, had consequences beyond my expectations. I have never been skinny, but was never overweight either, just at normal weight eating normal food. But then I realized I have gone too far with the junk food and the absolute lack of tracking what I eat and when I eat it. So this is how it all begun.
It started with a 3 months diet of restricting junk food and store-bought packaged food – chips, crisps, any dessert, cakes, muffins, etc. After 2 months I have lost 5 kgs. I was so motivated to continue. At the end of the 3 months I have lost 8 kgs. I haven’t had a single chips for 90 days and counting.
I started searching for ways to restrict even more and that’s when I discovered the calorie counting method. So I started counting my calories, writing them down on a piece of paper daily at first, then I started using an app on my phone to track weekly and monthly. I was weighing every bite I was taking. I was never eating out, never tasting any food that was not cooked by me. So my diet has gone down to fruits, vegetables, and a daily treat – something small and sweet or a piece of chips. At this stage I have lost 18 kgs. I was constantly cold. I was obsessively thinking about food all the time, dreaming of a way to get anything sweet. But then something in my head was never letting me do that, constantly advising I would get back to where I started. I begun cooking all the time, baking most of the time and giving the food to my family to enjoy, whereas I was just taste testing it to be sure it’s good.
This continued for 2 years. I have spent 2 years of my life restricting myself from any treat, I was always cold, I wasn’t strong enough to even clean my own house. I was getting tired climbing the stairs at work and I replaced 70% of my food for the day with drinking hot water or tea to satisfy my hunger. But this never happened. I remember going to bed feeling so hungry and my stomach growling for hours.
During the summer of 2018 I realized I had a problem. I begun watching the famous cheat day videos that got viral around the Internet and realized I was too restrictive to myself, cruel even. The fact that I was always hungry and unhappy, I was always cold, I was always in pain when moving physically or lying down in bed I couldn’t find a comfort posture because I could feel my bones stabbing me, all this was just a fracture of what was happening to me and deep down I knew I had to do something otherwise I might not survive this, I was genuinely scared.
I begun exercising, bought a treadmill and used it almost every day. I changed my diet and started eating actual food and used fruits and veggies as a snack instead. It was the hardest time of my life to fight against myself and my constant obsessive thinking of gaining weight. And I gained weight, I gained 4 kgs back until the end of the year. I still had my obsession mentally and I knew I had a long way to go to change that.
And then my miracle happened – I got pregnant. And that is how you forget how much you weigh, how big or small your legs are, how many kms you can walk or run on the treadmill. Your crazy obsession has to end otherwise you might not be able to stay healthy enough for your pregnancy and your baby. And thoughts like these motivate you to man up and stop being selfish for your own sake too.
I believe everyone can be weak enough to reach my bottom, and everyone can be strong enough to get out of it. It’s great to manage and monitor your weight, stay healthy and exercise, but over restricting can be the beginning of days and weeks of misery and this never ended well for anyone. If a person loves you with all your imperfections, then why can’t you?