Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Heavy Thoughts

There's an interesting article on Shine today about Pregorexia (anorexia during pregnancy) written from a daughter's perspective about her mother's battle with anorexia.

So many women, even thin and fit women, look at pregnancy with a sigh of relief: I can finally eat! Obviously eating anything is not the best idea, but I never really thought about the other side of the issue: how an eating disorder can affect you so deeply that you may potentially put your child (not to mention yourself) in serious health risks. It's a serious thought.

And, it makes me a little afraid. It's no secret I've dealt with binge and emotional eating all my life. I even went to therapy for it for a while. As a child I saw doctors all over the state of Indiana, nutritionists, therapists, you name it. By the age of 15, I had been on every diet known to man. I did the Mayo Clinic diet, Slim Fast, the Cabbage Soup Diet, on and on. As soon as I had my driver's license, I was driving to a nearby town to attend Weight Watchers meetings. Food and the elusive path toward weight loss has been a part of my life literally my whole life. The constant diets were as much a symptom of my weight issues, as they were my mother's weight issues (hers went the other direction though).

Separately, my mother and I have both addressed our food demons. And, I mean "addressed." We still battle them. What's changed is that we openly discuss them, when most of my life they were just the elephants (one skinny and one fat, respectively) in the room. Now, if you heard our conversation, it would sound like two normal women who just so happened to be fascinated with food and exercise. We talk about it every single day. We both know our obsession with being healthy is much better than the alternative, and we're so much alike.

Back to the article. What struck me most about the Pregorexia article was this sentence:

From the age of 5, I knew how to look at certain food's nutritional information while grocery shopping. I would not ask Mom to buy the food if I determined that the fat content was too high.

Obviously, our children learn to eat from us. But they also learn how to think about food from us. The last thing I want is for my children to have the same unhealthy relationship with food that I've had all these years. How do you prevent that kind of upbringing or mentality from influencing your own mothering?

I guess the only answer is to continue focusing on healthy choices that will hopefully become healthy habits so ingrained in my life that I can pass them on instead. After all, being healthy is 95 percent mental anyway.

So as not to make this blog a philosophical downer, I will tell you about my class. I'm taking a six week summer session called Total Body Fitness at Grossmont College, where I'm doing my pre-reqs in order to get into SDSU's Foods and Nutrition program. The class is an eclectic mix of old and young, fit and not so fit. The main emphasis of the class is to learn how to use the circuit equipment and to build strength (measured beginning and end of the six weeks). So far, we haven't actually got on the equipment, but I'm eager. I've only been doing cardio at the gym in the mornings, but if we don't get on a machine soon, I'm going to have to do something!!!

A lot of the people in the class are there for fun (since its a summer class), and that actually makes that whole thing really enjoyable. People really are there to learn how to be fit and they're very eager. It's a cool thing to see, considering this is my first school-related fitness class since freshman year of high school. And, of course, back then we were all way too cool for school to be excited about gym class.

Yesterday, we found out our body fat percentage. I'm not sure the machine is all that accurate, but it said mine was 23%. I guess that's good. While I'm not sure this class will be strenuous enough to make a difference in my body fat percentage in six weeks, maybe the class combined with my gym routine will. I guess we'll see on Week 6!

Oh, to update on my cottage cheese pancakes I mentioned before, they came out great! They are very rich, though. I left out the vanilla extract and sugar the recipe called for and they came out to 12 grams of protein and about 145 cals per pancake. They were tasty and Ryan ate them up. No pics though. I never think about that stuff. I want to get better at it. I know someday I'd be glad I did.

Food tonight is up in the air. Ryan will be chillin' with friends after work, and I have class until 6:10. I think I'll probably just grill up some chicken and have a salad. Then, I plan to curl up with a cup of tea and my new book. It's for book club on Tuesday and I just started it! I've gotta get reading!

Happy Humpday!


  1. I left you a reply on my blog- but I found your site!

    I am very touched by your story! You are amazing!

    Hang in there - changing life-long ingrained philosophies and habits related to food is hard- it is a process - but I would highly recommend Intuitive Eating- and I'd love to hear your thoughts about it.

    Good luck with everything!

  2. I've read Intuitive Eating also, love that book. It helped me get over the longest stretch of my battle w/ my bulimia.

  3. Hiya,
    From 343 to this.. So awesome. Your blog is inspiring. Please do share all the healthy-low calorie recipe if possible some vegeterian foods too :)


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