Binge eaters know their trigger foods.

Alcoholics know their drink of choice. 

Adulterers know those people they should stay away from.

And a recovered anorexic knows that she probably shouldn’t count calories.

Now to clump all of those behaviors together might seem ridiculous to some.  Ruining a marriage isn’t the same as binging on a bag of Flame Hot Doritos.  No.

Except let’s look a little further.

Both behaviors are toxic.  Both are clear indicators of a lack of SELF CONTROL.  Both are considered sin.  And both are absolutely avoidable.

(Did I step on any toes yet?)

I’m not really here to talk about sin or the psychology of toxic behaviors.  I want to talk about COUNTING CALORIES and what that looks like for someone who has dealt with an eating disorder.  If you’re a long-time reader, you’ve heard my story before.  For years, I counted every single thing that I put into my body.  A cup of cereal.  A serving of broccoli.  Even down to a stick of (sugarfree) gum.  Ending the day and knowing that I was under 300 calories gave me a sense of control and a sense of purpose.  To this day, I can tell you the calorie count for almost any food you put before me.  It’s just engrained in my head.  After years of counting and looking at nutrition labels, I know those numbers.

012

For some recovered people, getting back into counting calories might be perfectly fine.  Yet even as I type that sentence out, I have a hard time believing it fully.  Once you’ve taken a perfectly healthy (and sometimes very necessary) step of analyzing what goes into your body to a UNHEALTHY, scary place, I find it reckless to go back there.  But to each his own.  I know that, for me, worrying about food and calories and dieting only leads to discontentment.  Watch the vlog to hear more.

So how do I make sure I’m getting enough calories?  How would I go about losing weight if I needed to?

That post is in the works.  Smile  Check back this week!

QUESTION:  Do you count calories?  Do you find it helpful or dangerous territory?

splendid…lindsay

  1. Tracey Malone says:

    I absolutely love your blog. Do you ever train clients remotely? I live in upstate SC but would love to hear more about your clean eating challenges, or would you be willing to send work-outs to me? Thanks!

  2. Jolene says:

    I love love love this so much and your perspective. I fall into this mindset sometimes, too…oh this doesn’t look right, oh I don’t like how that body part looks today, maybe I should food log again…but since stepping away from it, I truly feel more in tune with the food that I eat and the choices that I make and no LESS in control of that not logging. I feel as though if I went back to it now, it would be a mentally stressful situation and I would fixate too much. You’re so fantastic, I loved your words and really needed to read this and SEE you today :) xo

  3. Maggie @ Maggie Gets Real says:

    Love this, Linds! Esp. the part about unfollowing people who encourage you to go back to something that’s not good for you. Drinking (responsibly) is not a sin, but if you’re a recovering alcoholic, it might not be good to spend all your time with winemakers and bartenders and your unemployed neighbor who spends all his time making moonshine.

  4. Brooke says:

    I could not agree with you more. Counting calories is what got me in trouble in the first place, and it is such a slippery slope that it’s just not worth it. I’ve slipped a few times when I’ve tried to lose weight in the past, and downloaded apps tracking my food and calorie intake, but I always ended up deleting them within a week or so when I realized how much inputting that info took away from my family meals, since I was obsessive about it. The Lord has really blessed me in opening my eyes in times like that, and in wiping those calorie counting thoughts out of my head before I can even go there. That’s a place I never want to go again. And I’m so thankful for people like you who are on the same side ;). Xoxo

  5. Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me says:

    As someone else who has suffered from anorexia, I find this topic fascinating. I too, like you, can recite calorie counts- even on food I’ve never tried before. It’s crazy how much storage space that all takes up in my head, and I wish I didn’t even know what calories were. Thankfully I am in a much better place now. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this!!

  6. Krysten says:

    I find that I like to count calories – mostly as a way to make healthier choices. When I am training hard it is easy to reach for sugar so tracking helps keep me focused on healthier choices.

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