why i stopped thinking about food so much

April 8, 2015 in Blog, Body, Diet, ED, Food by lindsaymwright

Hump day.  Hump day.

Also known as Wednesday.  Also known as a pretty busy day for us.  We have Trackstars, a meeting, MoveMore groups, another meeting and schoolwork.  Since it’s Spring Break for our town, I moved my afternoon MoveMore groups to an earlier time (and then proceeded to fill up all of that free afternoon time with SCHTUFF.  It’s just how I am apparently – can’t stand dead space).

So I was thinking about FOOD the other day and how much I love it (this seems to happen on the regular).  Last week’s stomach bug took my appetite away COMPLETELY and nothing sounded or looked good for a full 6-7 days.  I couldn’t even be around the smell of it – Travis cooked tacos one night and I had to stay in the living room.  I’m happy to report that alllllll the food looks good again and you can find me in the kitchen snacking on something most any time of day!  Being hungry again just makes me think about all the time I spent as a teen doing two things:  1) avoiding food and 2) thinking about food all the time.  It’s rather hard to do both of those actions simultaneously without going a little nutty.  Which I was.  Today I want to share my eating history and where I currently stand with food.

Let’s look back, shall we?

My Eating History

High School & College

Anorexia & Bulimia Days.  Obsess about EVERYTHING I put into my body.  Keep a calorie record (all the way down to a piece of sugar-free gum).  Late night binge/Starvation patterns.  Intake ~ 500 calories a day.

Early Marriage

ED Recovery Days.  Slowly transition out of calorie counting.  Still VERY attracted to the latest diet fads & still some binge/starvation behavior occurring.  Intake ~1,200 calories a day.

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Pregnancy

A HUGE turning point in my relationship with food.  View food as necessary fuel for myself and growing baby.  No counting calories.  Adopted an 80/20 mentality of intuitive eating.  A season of rest!  Intake ~ who knows?!?

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Present Day

Nowadays I eat when I’m hungry (and sometimes when I’m bored).  No foods are off limits – I just keep my portion sizes in check.  I refuse to let the words “cheat meal” or “I earned this” slip into my vocabulary.  No counting calories or macros.  Intake ~ 1,800-2,000 calories a day (rough estimate).

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A HUGE turning point for me and my relationship with food came when I stopped thinking so dang much.  I slowly began eating for FUEL and I just stopped thinking about what my next snack/meal would be.  I stopped planning ahead for social events and gatherings (wondering if the gathering I was going to would have food options that fit my regimented intake).  Instead, I began to eat what was presented and then I moved on.

Now listen – I’m not bashing food planning or healthy eating or calorie/macro counting AT ALL.  I just know that for me, freedom surrounding food is a big deal.  I’d much rather be 5 pounds heavier and able to eat without restriction.  It just isn’t worth that mental battle.  Maybe you’re a reader who’s struggling with restriction and obsession.  I’m here to tell you that life doesn’t have to be that way.  Ask yourself this – how many minutes a day am I thinking about FOOD?  And then, what could I replace those thoughts with that would actually better me as a person/mom/friend/wife??  Surely there’s more to life than obsessing about ourselves and this food stuff.

QUESTION:  What’s YOUR eating history??  Do you track calories/macros?

splendid…lindsay

5 ways to “spring clean” your body!

April 7, 2015 in Blog, Body, Diet, Food, Goals, Inspiration by lindsaymwright

Spring is in the air and if you’re like most women, you’re looking in the mirror and wondering what happened to your body during these last few months of hibernation.  Or maybe not.  Maybe you’ve been rocking your Winter workouts and you’re ready for that Spring Break bikini.  Either way, the changing seasons are great time to refocus and clean up a few of those old (notsohealthy) habits.

Here are FIVE quick fixes that you can start making TODAY that will help you see results come May!

5 Ways To “Spring Clean” Your Body!

1)  Guzzle WATER!

Aim for around 96 ounces of water per day (120 ounces for your husband!).  With this goal, you’ll find that you won’t have a lot of room for other liquids – make H20 your top priority.  If plain water is too boring for your palate, try adding sliced lemon or lime to liven things up!  Not only will your skin elasticity and digestion improve, but you’ll rid your body of toxins and increase your metabolism.

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2)  Steer clear of processed sugar!

According to Men’s Health, the average American eats about 92 grams of sugar a day, when the human body needs only about eight grams for energy, an amount that should always be satisfied through natural sugars from fresh fruits, vegetables, and grains.  Avoiding processed sugars can aid the body in combatting colds, improving digestion and the turnover of new cells.  I know that for me – simply paying more attention to my shopping cart and putting back those junk food items that creep in helps a ton!

3)  Find 30 minutes a day to MOVE!

You just KNEW I’d have a MOVE MORE tip, didn’t you?  Smile  We all know that exercise is fundamental to feeling great.  But did you also know that just 30 minutes of moderately challenging movement each day can help rid the body of toxins and waste?!  Through perspiration, we can give our bodies a mini “detox” every single day!

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4)  Trim down your portion sizes.

This is probably the easiest habit to change.  Simply eat a little less (and I’m NOT talking about starving yourself or even counting calories!!!).  According to the CDC, over the last 50 years right here in America, “the size of a hamburger has tripled, a basket of fries more than doubled, and the average soda has grown from a modest 7 ounces to a jumbo 42 ounces.” And some wonder why “The average American is 26 pounds heavier than in 1950. [And] about one-third of us are overweight or obese and that number is projected to hit nearly 50% by 2030.”

Some tips on controlling portion sizes:

  • Use smaller salad plates for your meals instead of the larger dinner plates.
  • Split a meal with your husband or friend while dining out.
  • Refrain from going back for seconds.

5)  Know the difference between CRAVINGS and HUNGER.

Before you reach your hand into the potato chip bag (or for me – the cereal box), ask yourself one question: “Am I really hungry or is this a CRAVING?”  Listening to your body will help you eat intuitively and you’ll be more inclined to reach for healthier foods that will nourish instead of harm.  If you’re not sure whether you’re actually hungry, try drinking 8 ounces of water and waiting a few minutes.  True hunger is a rare thing in most people, as we tend to graze all day.

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Lastly, listen to your body!  <-I feel like that phrase is way overused – but still, listen to what your body is saying.  Move a little more, eat a little less junk.  It’s not rocket science.  I think we overcomplicate these things and put way too much stock into a complete overhaul.  Small changes over time produce the best results.

QUESTION:  Any other (gentle) tips for spring cleaning your body??  Leave them below!

splendid…lindsay

why you should be nice to your postnatal body!

February 27, 2015 in Baby, Blog, Body, Postpartum by lindsaymwright

Remember when you were a young child?  Not a care in the world except whether or not you’d be allowed to watch cartoons on Saturday morning.  You didn’t notice that your body was fat or different or wrinkly or not perfect.  You just had a body.  A body that allowed you to jump and play.  A body that was essentially…YOU.

You probably walked around naked quite a bit.  Because it felt airy and nice.

You probably hate walking around naked now.  Because you feel less than perfect in your own skin.

This especially rings true after having children.  The breasts sag (or are huge and uncomfortable), there are new stretch marks, your belly is a bit rounder.  Even if you lose all the weight you put on during pregnancy, your “post-baby body” looks and feels a little different.

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As it should.

Think about what it just did for you.  For that sweet baby.  It’s truly remarkable what our bodies accomplish through pregnancy.  You grew another person for goodness sake!!  It’s so very sci-fi!  Yet we often skip over the appreciation aspect and jump right to BODY BASHING.  Sadly, the focus is either A) gaining back control as quickly as possible or B) bashing ourselves when we don’t return to that perfect state of normalcy.

It’s just silly.  And it needs to stop….today!

Tips To Become More Comfortable In Your Own Skin

  • Avoid negative talk.

Women are the worst for self-hate talk – we are our own worst enemies.  Avoid body bashing by following this simple rule:  If you wouldn’t say it out loud about another person, don’t say it to yourself! 

  • Embrace the change.

Be open to the possibility that your body might not look the same as it did pre-pregnancy.  I can guarantee that you’re the only one who cares that you now have to wear a size 8 instead of your pre-pregnancy size 6’s.  Embrace the change!

  • Quality foods/Quality Movement

Focus on feeling better in your own skin by putting quality foods into it and exercising daily.  Get outside for a walk in the sunshine.  While you’re walking, thank your body for the ability to MOVE.  It’s a blessing!

  • Focus on the positive.

Instead of looking at all of the “flaws,” pick out some details about your body that you LOVE.  Maybe you have strong legs or thick, lustrous hair.  We’ve all been blessed with something that makes us feel beautiful.  Dwell on those things and not the negative.

With all of the other stressors in your life, negative body image shouldn’t be one.  I can tell you right now that with three little ones, I just don’t have time to be LOOKING BACK.  I want to look FORWARD.  They look to me for behavior patterns too.  They hear when I bash my body.  They SEE that wonky face I make when I look in the mirror and “feel fat.”

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Strong, confident women don’t focus on the negative.  They don’t look back.  They don’t keep those “goal jeans” and continually beat themselves up for not fitting back into them.  And they certainly don’t speak body hate over themselves or in front of their children.

Instead, they appreciate.  They give themselves GRACE.  They move forward and focus on the things that they can change.  You may not look like or be the same person you were before you had kids.  And thank GOD!!  That girl was a shadow of the woman you’re turning into.  Having kids will do that for you – make you stronger, less focused on yourself, more focused on the things that truly matter.

Strong, confident women are capable of the strongest of feats.

Like creating new life.

That’s something to be proud of, no matter what you look like.

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QUESTION:  Other ways that we can celebrate the post-pregnancy body??  What’s your best physical feature?

splendid…lindsay

my favorite supplements

January 9, 2015 in Blog, Body, Lists by lindsaymwright

I asked the good old Facebook people what types of posts they’d like to see in 2015 and my good friend Kelly asked if I could share a list of my favorite supplements.  Yes, Kelly!  For you I will.  While my favorites have certainly changed over the years as I’ve been experimenting with how my body reacts to various things, I think I’m finally in a place where I know what I’m doing.  To compose the list, I literally opened up our cupboard and started pulling out all of the things that we take.  Most are on a daily basis, some I take several times a day.

What IS a supplement??

The FDA defines a dietary supplement as:

a product intended for ingestion that contains a “dietary ingredient” intended to add further nutritional value to (supplement) the diet.

They can be vitamins, minerals, herbs or other plants, amino acids (the individual building blocks of protein), or parts of these substances.  They can be in pill, capsule, tablet, or liquid form.  So basically anything that you add to your normal diet.  While there is some controversy over whether supplements are necessary or not, I’ve found that I enjoy adding in a few different things that I think my diet either lacks or could use some improvement upon.  Every person is different so take this list with the grain of salt that it is. There are a few affiliate links in here but no company sponsorships so please don’t feel bamboozled – buy if you like…or don’t.  Just sharing what I like and actually use.

My Favorite Supplements

Protein Powder

PlantFusion Protein Powder – Vanilla Bean

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Hands down, PlantFusion wins my vote for the best PLANT-BASED protein powder.  I’ve tried Vega and Sunwarrior and they just don’t hold a candle to the taste and versatility that I’ve found in Plant Fusion.  If you’re looking for a non-dairy protein powder (dairy seems to hurt my belly in large quantities), PlantFusion is a good fit.  It’s made from various vegetables and grains but has the same protein content as a whey protein.

Optimum Nutrition 100% Casein Protein – Creamy Vanilla 

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If you’re good with whey and casein protein powders, you should give Optimum Nutrition a try.  Travis uses this 100% Casein and adds it to his bedtime cereal bowl (just add a scoop on top and mix it in).  Whey is great for post-workout refueling as it absorbs quickly and gets to those muscles faster.  Casein is slow acting so its best for right before bedtime, decreasing the likelihood of your muscle breaking down over night.  I also add casein to any baked goods that I make (seriously…even to brownies) just to cut the glycemic index a bit.  You can’t even taste it!  <-tip: I also buy VANILLA flavored powders as you can easily make them chocolate (or any other flavor) by adding cocoa or extracts.

Pre-Workout Supplements

Advocare’s CATALYST

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I take two Catalyst pills about 30 minutes before I work out in the morning (so as soon as I pop out of bed, along with my Spark).  Catalyst helps maintain muscle mass during exercise & aids in preserving muscle and energy levels.  It’s an amino acid that helps repair & protect muscle tissue.  Even when nursing, I can take Catalyst so it’s not a thermogenic or anything like that (no jitters, no crazy spikes).  I feel like it provides me with a little boost for my workouts.

Advocare’s SPARK

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Oh Spark!  This stuff is amazing!  It seriously tastes like kool-aid!  Spark is a intraworkout supplement (intra = pre, during, post) that provides ENERGY through amino acids, B vitamins and as much caffeine as a small cup of coffee.  I drink one serving a day, usually before my workout and during.  Favorite flavors = Mango Strawberry and Fruit Punch.

Scivation Xtend

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When I’m not feeling Spark or just need a little change, I like Scivation Xtend.  Xtend is a sugar free and carbohydrate free intra-workout catalyst that offers high quality branch chain amino acids (BCAAs).  It’s perfect for before, during and after a strength training workout.  Pretty tasty too – although listen up!  DO NOT order the Orange Cream like we did – it is pretty gross.  The Watermelon and Mango flavors are much better!

Gut Health

Advocare’s PROBIOTIC Restore Ultra

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I’ve talked before about my poo problems but I’ll say it again – without a little help from probiotics, low dairy consumption and a high leafy green consumption, I could easily go several days without a bowel movement (chalk that one up to excessive laxative abuse in the past..stupid girl).  I like the Probiotic Restore Ultra pills because I can tell a difference when I don’t take them.  Probiotics help to maintain normal beneficial intestinal microflora, support healthy intestinal function and improve nutrient absorption. I take these on an empty stomach first thing in the morning.

Digestive Enzymes – Trader Joe’s & Spring Valley

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I discovered digestive enzymes while we were living in Colorado.  It seemed like everyone was popping these pills after their meals.  Adding a digestive enzyme to your supplement regimen can help with the breakdown of food – they just make it easier for your body to break down meals and absorb vitamins and minerals.  I keep these at the front of the cupboard and chew a few after larger meals.  Honestly, I don’t know if they do much (lol) but I just like them. :)

Vitamins/Etc.

Advocare’s OMEGAPLEX

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I’ve been taking fish oil for a few years now and notice a big difference in my hair and nails the most.  Fish oil supplements (like Omegaplex) contain both EPA and DHA fatty acids which are proven to lower cholesterol, reduce triglycerides and decrease the likelihood of heart attach and stroke (source).  While you can find omega-3 fatty acids in foods (think fish, sardines, flaxseeds, walnuts), I personally don’t eat a ton of these things and feel the need to supplement.

Rainbow Light Women’s One Multivitamin

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I’ve only recently started taking this Rainbow Light Women’s One Multivitamin but it was sent to me through a friend.  I think like most multivitamins, you can’t REALLY tell a huge difference in the way you feel so it’s harder for me to recommend one over another.  I will say that I’ve read up on the Rainbow Light line and feel very comfortable suggesting them – they have all-ORGANIC, non-GMO, food based supplements.  We also use their Children’s multivitamin (chewable – Fruit Punch flavor) and Fiber Garden gummies!  H & C love those things!

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Phew.  That list took a lot longer to put together than I had anticipated!  I hope you find something that fits your needs!

QUESTION:  What types of supplements do YOU take??  Worthwhile links are appreciated!  I’d love to see what you guys like!

splendid…lindsay

flashback friday: the body i’m meant to have

December 19, 2014 in Blog, Blogging, Body, ED, Faith, Flashback Friday, Inspiration by lindsaymwright

(I wrote this post two years ago.  Timehop reminded me of it and I thought today would be a good time to share it again.  I’m not quite ready to blog yet.  My papaw is still hanging in there (hospice – acute leukemia) and I’m thankful (so thankful) for your prayers and kind words!)

Reader emails.

If I were vain, I’d call them “fan mail”.  (But luckily, I’m too pretty to be vain.)

Instead, I take them for what they are – people reaching out.

Anytime I see one in my inbox, my mind fills with worry about what I’ll say, whether the words will be anointed, even before I click open.  The major theme among the emails:

DISCONTENTMENT and A DESIRE TO CHANGE.

Although I feel uneasy about these emails, it’s pretty easy for me to respond.  Because I’ve been there.  Heck, at moments, I’m still there.  The only difference between now and 5 years ago is that I’ve learned how to overpower any negative, self-hate thoughts that come in my mind.  I simply say, “I’m fearfully and wonderfully made.”

I can’t refute that.  And neither can the voices. 018 This particular reader email that I’m about to share encompasses the very things I said I love writing about: GOD and BODY IMAGE.  I’m sure there are other (correct and helpful) ways that this topic could have been approached, but, after some prayer and reflection, I responded the best I knew how.  I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts on the matter in the comments!

Here we go.

SUBJECT:  Help and Encouragement needed!  Please.

Dear Lindsay, I know you probably hear this a lot, but I think you should hear it again- What an awesome blog! Truly a blessing to come across!! I have followed many blogs in the past, but I was especially drawn to yours because of your spirituality. I’ve shared many of your struggles in the past (restrictive eating/laxative abuse) and am happy to say that God pulled me out of all of that last year. The mental and emotional healing is still in progress. That’s where I have a question for you. I still struggle with weighing myself multiple times a day and counting calories excessively, only to be disappointed with any progress, or lack there of. I’ve finally come to a place where I want the body God intended me to have.  I want it. Regardless of what the scale says, or how many calories I eat a day, I want what God intended for me to have. And I don’t think I’m that far off! (In my mind, probably 10-12lbs). I DO believe that the buck doesn’t stop here- that God has an even better body in store for me. My question is this- how? How do you trust God with something that you have always been in control of? And not just that, but something that you have been FIERCELY in control of? I know that my efforts will only lead to frustration and not being successful (doing it in my own strength, that is). But trusting God, letting Him direct me in this area, is probably the hardest obstacle I’ve come to in my journey.  Your thoughts?

Whoa.

The first thing I wrote back was, “Before I answer your question, tell me what you mean by you’re 10-12 pounds from the body God wants you to have. Are you 10 pounds over that goal or under that goal?  Knowing that will help me answer you!”  The reader answered back that she was 10-12 pounds ABOVE that weight.  With that knowledge in mind (and again, some prayer time), I was able to respond.

Dear Reader, It’s so hard when a person who has struggled with disordered eating wants to lose weight. Because all of the tips and things that I could tell you to do, often backlash and our past comes back to haunt us.  I’d like to ask – Why do you think that the body that God wants you to have is 10 pounds lighter?? Honestly, God doesn’t really care about your body size, but rather, your heart.  That being said, I don’t think He necessarily wants you to be fat or overweight or uncomfortable.  He wants your HEART to be in a good place.  For you to love yourself. For you to treat your body with respect.  He made the body you’re in right at this moment.  10 pounds “overweight.”  And I don’t think He cares what the number is. I threw my scale in the garbage because it was controlling me.  I don’t count calories anymore because they were controlling me.  I’m working right now to cut back on an exercise addiction that is controlling me.  I know that, for me, I had to stop cold turkey and really GIVE IT OVER to God.  In the end, it’s your heart that matters.  What are you putting before Him?  These things become idols in our lives and what God so desperately wants is for HIM to be an idol.  I can guarantee you, if you give these things up and ask God to guide you, He will honor that sacrifice! The body, your weight, how you look in clothes – all trivial and NOT eternal.  You are definitely in my prayers – I hope what I said doesn’t come across as the wrong answer – it’s just my heart.

Lindsay

The message that I can’t stop repeating, the whole idea behind “Tearing Down Idols”, is this:

Put your time and effort into THE HEART.  Into others.  Into your marriage/family/community.  When those aspects of your life are fulfilled, the number on the scale won’t matter.  It just won’t.  It will pale in the light of the sense of peace and contentment that comes from focusing on the things that TRULY MATTER.  I promise. 

060 Does this mean you should stop working out and eating healthfully?  Absolutely not.  I KNOW that God made our bodies to MOVE.  I also know that He wants us to respect our bodies by nourishing them with foods that fuel, rather than harm.

It’s the obsession with all things BODY that I disagree with.   

Will the number on the scale matter when you die?  Will your perfect body give you eternal life?  No.

The body – no. 

The heart – YES!

QUESTION:  What are your thoughts on using the phrase, “The body God intended me to have?”

splendid…lindsay

why food and exercise shouldn’t touch

December 3, 2014 in Blog, Body, Diet, Food, Inspiration, Over-Exercise by lindsaymwright

“We’re eating turkey and dressing tomorrow. 

Push harder!!! 

WORK!!” 

Head down, legs pumping as fast as they could.  Those mountain climbers had nothing on this group.  Yet as soon as the words left my lips, I cringed at the sound of them.

“No, Lindsay.  NO!  You don’t believe it so don’t coach it.”

And it’s true.

I don’t let the corners of food and exercise touch.  Like those (odd) people who can’t let the juice from their black beans touch the corn on their plate, I don’t allow my mind to even go to that place where exercising X amount burns off X amount of food.  After talking to several recovering ED friends and just women in general, I realize that this is a blessing.

Food and Exercise.  Why DO we put these two things together so much??

We say things like: 

“I ate this donut so I’m going to run for 50 minutes to burn it off.”

or…

“I want to eat a donut later so I’m going to run for 50 minutes to make a calorie deficit.”

Read this:

If you want to lose weight, you need to watch your food intake. 

If you want to get fit and strong, you need to exercise. 

The borders of food and exercise should really only meet when we’re talking about pre and post-workout fueling.  That’s it.

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When we use exercise as a punishment, pushing as hard as we can, for the food we’ve either eaten or want to eat, we dishonor our bodies.

When we binge on food because we worked out really hard (or maybe twice in a day), we dishonor our bodies.

When we use the phrase “let me burn this off,” we get stuck in this perpetual pattern of feeling shameful about our food choices or approaching exercise with an attitude of punishment.  Not good.  Not healthy.

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I want to tell you right now – there is nothing more JOYFUL than moving your body.  It’s a pure blessing!  I think once you’ve dealt with an injury or sickness, you immediately recognize the privilege that is MOVEMENT.  Same goes with food – fueling your body in a way that promotes digestion, clear skin, energy – that’s a gift you can give yourself.  Eating vibrant, energy-giving foods is a way of honoring your body.

To move freely, for fun…for pleasure.  That’s the goal.

To eat healthfully.  That’s the goal.

Not “calories burned.”  

Not all the numbers.  

And most definitely not out of guilt or obligation.

(So long story short – don’t let “calories burned” rule your life, don’t let food and exercise touch and keep your black beans separate from your corn.)

QUESTION:  Are you stuck in this pattern of exercising to burn off what you ate?  Do you count calories?

splendid…lindsay