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The Post That Wasn’t Supposed To Be Super Deep But Wound Up Being Exactly That…


Hey everyone.

Workout – 6 miles in Central Park.

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I don’t know what it is, but my legs have been feeling super dead since school started back in August. In fact, my entire body has just been feeling exhausted. I know that I don’t get enough sleep, but I didn’t get much sleep at home… So no change there. I also am working out significantly less than I was over the summer (which I need to change)… So I don’t get why I have been feeling this way.

That being said, I am so happy to be running again after having to take almost 3 weeks off. I just wish that my body was as happy to be running as my brain is.

I also just need to state for the umpteenth time just how much I love running in Central Park. Not only is it aesthetically beautiful, but it is also just such a…. I don’t know… spiritual(?) place to me. The vibe is just amazing.

I love how busy it is. I love seeing people of all ages, genders, ethnicities, etc. out running, walking, and biking. It’s one of those unique places where you can be surrounded by activity, but still be enveloped by a feeling of absolute serenity.

I also love how it feels like a completely different world than New York City. Here you have what is one of the busiest cities in the world, yet it couldn’t feel any less like it.

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I found myself in the middle of the “woods” today during my run. I hit a dead end, and very unlike myself, I felt compelled to stop an meditate. I sat down on a rock, closed my eyes, and meditated in the style that I spoke about the other day. Yup, I did the chants and everything. I seriously felt myself leave myself if that makes any sense. I was surrounded by nature and the sounds of the birds and the wind (today was the coldest and windiest day every, I swear) blowing through the trees. I just kind of felt at complete peace with the world and with myself, and that is not a feeling that I am used to. Typically, I am just constantly consumed by my complete self loathing.

I really want to become a more spiritual person. It’s funny actually… We live in such an amazing and storage and magical world. I am grateful for the air I breathe and the sky above me and the grass and the water and for all of the places that I have been and for all of the places that I hope to someday go. That all being said, I can never get myself to just sit and meditate and really take it all in.

In my mind, I am the kind of person that wants to run around barefoot to absorb the earth’s vibrations and practices yoga, and meditates daily… But I’m not. But I want to be. Does that make any sense?

I wish I could pinpoint exactly what is holding me back. I don’t know if it’s some sort of fear or anxiety surrounding this.. Or if it is just my putting obscene amount of pressure on myself as I always do.

I, like many people suffering from eating disorders, addiction, etc., am a very extreme person. When I focus my attention on something, I feel that I need to give that one thing 110%. Anything less absolute perfection is a complete failure and failure can’t happen because then I just spiral downward into a self-inflicted cycle of despair over my, “not being good enough.” I want to be this spiritual person, but I also like makeup and clothes and don’t want to just get rid of everything and start living a life of complete minimalism. I am not in the place right now where I want to go 100% vegan (although I will say that my diet is predominantly plant based). Because of these factors, along with my not meditating every day or living and breathing yoga, I feel as though if I were to try to discover a type of spirituality… I would be a fraud.

That being said, I know that I need to, in some form, live a more spiritual life.

I grew up attending Catholic school my entire life. I was never one of the super duper into the church/involved in every type of church organization type of kids. But I did, in my own quiet way, have a deeply routed faith. And I cannot even begin to tell you how many times that faith, quite literally, saved my life.

When I was younger and having my severe suicidal thoughts, it was a fear of going to hell (I had a teacher who told me that suicides go to hell once and it stuck with me) that kept me from going through with the act. I now believe that if there is a hell, any God worth loving wouldn’t send a soul there that was hurting so deeply that they felt the need to end their lives. Still, this fear kept me from doing the unthinkable.

When I was in the hospital, having incapacitating panic attacks that had me screaming into pillows and shaking so violently that my IV would come out, it was a little rosary that my mom gave me that was the only way I could calm myself down. Each night in the hospital, I would fall asleep running those little beads through my fingers and praying.

Then one day, I woke up and my faith was gone. I kid you not, there was no event (yes my dad had died the previous year, but I never felt an anger towards God or a doubting in His existence from that) leading up to it. I just woke up this morning and poof. Nothing.

I had never felt so alone.

I don’t know what I believe in right now. I don’t really believe in anything, but I so desperately want to. Need to.

I always used to say to whoever would listen that I felt that there was nothing sadder than believing in absolutely nothing.

“I don’t care if you worship dogs as gods,” I would say. “You just need to believe in something. Because without a belief, what is there?”

And now I am one of those people that can’t believe in anything. And trust me, it’s just as sad as I believed it would be.

I have been listening to a lot of podcasts recently, and a lot of them feature very spiritual beings. Now, none of these people that are so inspiring to me are spiritual in the traditional sense. They aren’t preaching about Jesus (not that I have anything again this, because that couldn’t be further from the truth), nor are they hippy-dippy types (again, nothing wrong with that) going on about the vibes and pseudo-buddhism or any of the dogmatic stuff that everyone seems to love to claim they believe in more so because of it’s being trendy or different than their truly loving and understanding the religion or belief system.

No, these are people who have been in the depths of darkness. People who have overcome some truly heinous things and have transformed into some of the most amazing human being that walk this planet.

These are people who have found a type of spirituality that resonates with them and that they fell in love with . There are people who read and studied everything and felt compelled towards specific beliefs by powers greater than themselves. These are people that you know are spiritual beings, not because of what they tell you (in fact, most of them on the podcasts only speak about spirality for a tenth of the episode), but by the words they speak and the energy and vibrations that they emanate, even over just audio.

I feel that I need something, anything, to make me believe in something. I was to be free from these thoughts, this disease, that is keeping me from becoming the person that I want to be. I am tired of being tired. I am tired of hating myself, both physically and mentally. I am tired of feeling unfulfilled, and I am tired of feeling guilty for my feeling unfulfilled.

In one of the podcasts that I listened to earlier this week, the guest (I can’t remember who) said something along the lines of that once you have been at the point where you were truly suicidal or caught in complete and all consuming addiction, that you have already died. The time that you have when and if you get out of the darkness? It’s a gift. You were dead, but somehow you came back.. And now it is your responsibility to use that time that the universe has so generously gifted you and use it to give back to the world that you wanted to badly to leave. That is all I want.

I just want to be someone that is worth something.

This post was actually supposed to be about my trip to the Brooklyn Museum yesterday and how amazing it was.. But then, in typical Erin fashion, I started rambling about super deep and utterly uninteresting things… So, now I am just going to share with you a few pretty pictures from yesterday! Woohoo!

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Learning To Breathe


Hey everyone.

Yeah, I’m at a point where I need to stop pretending that this little piece of the internet that I’ve got here is intended to be a daily blog. I want it be a daily blog, and I believe that one day it probably will be… But at the moment, my mind is far too messy to post something of substance every day. And honestly, I’m stressed out about so much that the last thing I need is to be putting a ridiculous amount of pressure on myself to put up blog posts every day that no one really reads any way.

All that aside, I am actually feeling… Not positive exactly. Hopeful? Zen? I don’t know, I just feel slightly at peace with the world right now, and that is a wonderful thing. But more about that later.

Workout – I’M RUNNING AGAIN!

I tested the waters and tried to run for real for the first time in 2 weeks on Saturday and I did it and it was pain free and it was absolutely wonderful in every way shape or form, even if I had/have a really bad head cold and felt like my brain was rattling around in my head the whole time =P.

IMG_7965 IMG_7977Now, a reoccurring theme with me when it comes to coming off of injuries is that I instantly want to go out and run ALL THE MILES… But obviously, that’s not exactly the smartest way to go about getting into running and often results in me re-injuring myself.

So today I hit up the elliptical. I am so sick of the elliptical at this point it’s not even funny. That being said, I believe that tomorrow’s workout will also be an elliptical one. Oh the joy…

I also did some strength training for the first time in about five thousand years. I am the very definition of a cardio queen… I just find cardio to be about a billion and one times more enjoyable than strength training (this is why I love Insanity and other plyometric workouts so much, they combine cardio with resistance), but I really need to get back into the habit of strength training regularly. I used to be so religious about making sure to have a balance between my cardio and strength training, and I definitely felt a lot better when I was doing a little strength training regularly.

I worked my legs and flutes and I can already tell that I am going to be in pain tomorrow… But a good kind of pain!

Like I said earlier, my mind has been even more of a mess than it normally is recently… And this has resulted in my being behind on pretty much everything. I am just completely overwhelmed by life and the world and school and then I get even more upset because I know that most people do so much more than me and that I have no right to be as overwhelmed as I am.

I actually opened up my Japanese text book today to try to start on the ten pages of homework that I had to do and to study for the test I had in the subject tomorrow earlier and wound up curled up in a ball shaking and crying (like I said, I’m kind of pathetic) for a couple of hours and got nothing done. I think I have to drop the class, I can’t handle anything or focus on anything and there really is no hope in my passing that class in my current mental state… And I am so disgusted and embarrassed about this fact. I used to be a really smart person and a good student. I was an above average student my whole life, got into one of the most difficult high schools on Long Island, and wound up in the honors track (every class I took was honors) all without really trying all that hard. These days, I struggle to remember anything and everything. I retain nothing that I read or learn, and I feel like a straight up idiot. Tack that on top of feeling like I am letting down my mom by not excelling in school or at life. I mean… What do I do? I have no job because every time I get a job, I wind up having a panic attack on the job and having to quit in change. I am in no clubs because I am too scared of being around people… And now I’m dropping a class that I really can’t afford to drop? I just… I don’t know.

Oh, and there is no way that I am graduating on time. I just feel like I am nothing but a financial and emotional burned on my mom… And I hate it.

All that said, I really am so lucky to have the mother that I do. I called her today in the middle of a panic attack, meaning I was hysterical and not making much sense, and she was nothing but kind and understanding. I am so lucky and really don’t’ deserve the absolutely amazing people that I have in my life. I also cried to my friend Shannon (she’s been not he blog before!), who was my one friend and savior at my last college. She just listened and helped me think a little bit more rationally.

So what am I doing?

What I really wanted this post to be about was how at peace I am currently feeling… Or was feeling. Writing about all of that negative junk that I just did has me a little anxious again. Good job Erin =P. But really.

Something that I really want to focus on is bettering myself in any way that I can so I that I can get myself to, well, become myself. Right now I feel as though I am just trapped in this depressed shell and I can’t get out. There are so many things that I want to accomplish and that I can’t currently accomplish because I am just so stuck. It’s kind of hard to go out into the world and try to accomplish your larger-than-life dreams when you struggle to get yourself out of bed in the morning and often can’t leave your building because you are too disgusted by yourself to be seen by others. Again, I know I’m kind of ridiculous.

One small thing that I have been trying to for myself is start practicing yoga regularly. I am the kind of person that I get frustrated when I am not good at something instantly (which is ridiculous). I don’t like being considered a “beginner” in anything, I get embarrassed and frustrated… But to begin anything, you kind of need to be a beginner.

Last week, I signed up for the 15 day free trial on YogaGlo, a huge website full of hundreds of online yoga classes of all styles. Obviously, once the 15 days is up I am going to have to cancel my membership. I don’t have the money… But I thought it would be a good place to start!

Truthfully, I haven’t practiced every day like I had planned on doing… But I have practiced twice, so it’s a start.

Before sitting down to write this post, I did a 20 minute vinyasa flow for balance and followed it up with something very out of character for me.

Meditation.

Meditation is one of those things that I always know that I should do, but I can never actually get myself to do. My mind is just too busy and I get too anxious and antsy every time I try to meditate. Or I make the lame excuse that I don’t have time.

But tonight, something compelled me to give this highly praised practice another shot… And it was amazing.

The specific type of meditation that I did was called Isha Kriya, and the practice was led by Kathryn Budig. It was a simple guided practice done in a seated position. The meditation session in its entirety was 15 minutes in length and consisted of 3 different sections.

The first part was breathing and mantras. You inhaled and said, “I am not my body,” and exhaled saying, “I am not even my mind.” This portion lasted about 7 minutes.

Next was 7 receptions of breathing in and exhaling as a sound. I don’t know the technical term for this portion, but the point of the sound was that it caused vibrations in your solar pled.

The final part of the meditation was the par that I thought would be the worst for me. In fact. going into the practice, I didn’t even think that I would be able to finish it. This portion of the meditation was just simple silent meditation. Normally, this is when my mind floods with thoughts, and they are more often than not negative ones. However, crazily enough, this didn’t happen this time. I was somehow able to keep my mind almost completely devoid of any real thoughts… And it was amazing.

Once the session was over, I just kind of sat there in a trance for a little while. I just felt calm and at peace and… Hopeful. I want to get my creativity back. I want to start doing more of the things that I love. And I want to do them because I want to do them instead of doing them because I feel as though I will be a failure if I don’t do them.

I’m thinking that tomorrow I’m going to explore this amazing city a little bit and take some photos. Growing up, I was always super into photography, but now I rarely do it.

I also want to make time to sit and work on my book. I have been trying to write this thing for years now, but it’s only about 15 pages at this point. I love writing. I really do… I don’t get why I so often forget that.

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Oh, and the new Fall edition of the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan was released today, so that’s pretty darn rad.

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Good night all!<3

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Thinking Out Loud 10.9.2014 – Getting Deep Up In Here


Hey guys.

It’s, “Erin rambles on about the jumbled mess that are her thoughts,” day… Or, to put it in a better way, “Thinking Out Loud Thursday.”

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Thanks Amanda for creating this link-up and actually giving me the mental strength to sit and type a post (wow, that was melodramatic).

Workout – 45 minutes of intervals on the elliptical.

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1. Yup. As I briefly mentioned in my Monday post…. I’m still/yet again injured. I has been almost 2 weeks since my last “run” (ok, actually I ran 4 miles on Saturday because I thought I was healed, but I was wrong and am paying for it.

I strained a muscle in my lateral leg. The pain is most severe in my outer ankle area (hurts to the touch), but it pulls from my arch all the way up through my gluteal area. Not fun.

I just feel as though I am always injured, and yes, I am aware that I am to blame for this in a number of ways… But this just could not have come at a worse time.

Over the course of the last month or so, I have just been spiraling further and further down the rabbit hole of depression and self loathing. I am having trouble getting out of bed in the morning, I don’t feel up to talking to anyone (even if it is just over text messages), I don’t have the mental stamina to complete my school work. Basically, I just feel like curling up in a ball and turning the world around me off. The universe feels too big and loud and terrifying and I don’t feel strong enough to be a part of it.

During the course of this spiraling into a deep sea of depression, there was one single thing that filled me with hope and joy and a sense of meaning… Can you guess what it was?

If you said running, than you are correct.

In fact, the day that I discovered I was injured, I had a therapy appointment before I went to the doctor for my leg. We had an amazing session and we spoke about how bad I have been doing and how running has been my saving grace. She told me how important it is that I keep running, as it is the one thing that gets me out of bed in the morning and that makes taking on the world, while still almost impossible, somewhat bearable.

Of course, right after that appointment I was told that I couldn’t run again for a while.

I completely lost it.

Yup, embarrassing myself, as I frequently do, I started crying in the middle of the medical office. The worst part of not being able to control your emotions is knowing that your reaction to the given situation is inappropriate in respect to the situation. I just feel like a toddler throwing a fit over not getting a toy that they want or something. As a result, I wind up crying even harder because of how pathetic I feel. It is a vicious cycle.

On top of being in a black hole of depression already, not being able to run is a double whammy when it comes to worsening my already less-than-ideal mental state.

On one hand, running is my saving grace. It is my love. It is what I feel passionate about. It is the one thing that makes me feel like maybe I’m worth something. It makes me grateful to be alive in this wonderful, beautiful, and magical world of ours. it makes me thankful to be alive and to have a body, regardless of the size of it, that can carry me for miles and miles.

On the other hand, it is no secret that a lot of my issues stem from a deep loathing of myself, and, more specifically, my body. I was already freaking out over the fact that I feel as though I eat way too much and that I am gaining weight and getting bigger by what feels like the day. Now, I am unable to run or do intensive exercise. All I can do is the elliptical or the bike… Not exactly the top of the list calorie burning machines. I already wanted to get this extra weight off (which is almost impossible for me since I destroyed my metabolism with my eating issues…I really need to get back on track with working on that), but now it feels more impossible than ever. I feel and look puffy and larger. I don’t want to leave the room because I don’t want people to see me. I was already struggling with getting to class, now if feels almost impossible. In fact, I skipped out on two classes this week because I just physically could not get myself out the door. I just crumble… It’s bad.

I think the worst part is knowing on a logical level that a lot of it must be in my head. You don’t swell up 20 pounds over night, but to me it appears as though I do. I have trouble differentiating what is real and what is just a false projection from my disordered mind. It’s like there is this constant war going on inside my mind and I can’t make it stop.

It is exhausting… And quite honestly, I don’t know what to do about it.

Another piece of all of this is that I feel like every time I take one step in the right direction recovery wise, I wind up taking about 10 steps back. At the end of the summer, I was seeing progress, I really was. To others (mainly my mom), I know that it seemed as though therapy was doing nothing and I was in just as bad of a place as I had been for years… But I wasn’t. The thing with recovery is that it is a painfully slow process. Any change, infinitesimal as it may seem, is crucial and important. The recovering person notices them, but everyone around that person sees absolutely nothing.

I explained it, both to my mom and to my therapist, like this – For years now, I have hated my body. I obsess about what I look like, what people are seeing and thinking of my size, and how food is the enemy 100% of the time. At the end of the summer, these thoughts consumed my mind about 98.5% of the time. This 1.5% change of mentality may seem laughable in size… But to me is was huge. 

And now I’m back at 100% of the time for these bad thoughts… And I hate it.

I also feel like I am wasting my mom’s money on therapy and I am wasting my therapist’s time. I feel selfish for even going… I am just at a stand still.

2. SOMETHING MORE POSITIVE!!!!

There is actually one thing that fills me with as much joy as running does.

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(from my Instagram)

It sounds stupid, but if I could be absolutely anything in the world, I would be a musician. Now, I’m not talking like a Taylor-Swift-status-billionaire-superstar status musician… I would just want to be in a band with a moderate fan base that I could love. Music is the most powerful form of expression in my opinion. I have wanted to be a lot of different things career-wise in my lifetime, and none of the career paths that I have aspired to really had anything in common. The only common factor among my passions in life is this overwhelming need to make people feel something. I think this is why writing has always been a reoccurring theme in my goals in life. When you read a good book, watch a powerful movie, or listen to beautiful music, it elicits some sort of emotion within in you. Words have the power to be your best friend, your biggest motivator. Words can make you feel less alone… And that is what I love so much about music.

I listen to music by bands who weave words with melody in ways that make my heart cry out. I listen to music that can bring a real smile to my face whilst also brining me to tears… And listening to live music? There is nothing better.

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Jeremy McKinnon of A Day To Remember absolutely killing it. 

It sounds like a cliche from a bad teenage movie… But music really has saved my life in more ways than one. I have been listening to my favorite band, Silverstein, since 7th grade. 7th grade also happened to be the time where my depression really manifested into something truly nasty. I have continued listening to that band through the years. I know that every time I am having a really hard time, their music has been there for me, and it will continue to be there for me as long as I have hearing.

There is also something truly beautiful, at least to me, about being surrounded by hundreds of people who all have the same deep connection to a certain song or band that you do. We are all pressed together like sardines in a can, we are jumping, we are struggling to keep up with keeping the crowd surfers from falling to the floor. My hair is being pulled and I am being absolutely demolished by the people around me (don’t even ask how many bruises I have on my body right now)… And for some reason, being accidentally punched and kicked, being knocked over while trying to hold up a dude about twice the size of me, and being drenched in sweat that isn’t even my own… It’s beautiful.

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So in conclusion, I have been doing really really awful lately… But I had one really great day on Saturday, so I am choosing to focus on that instead.

This too shall pass.

…Right?

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Mental Health Monday – What Is Over Exercising?


Hey all.

Workout – 4.31 easy recovery miles in Central Park.

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(The reason that the pace is drastically slower in the first mile is due to the fact that there were a million red lights on the run over to the park and I didn’t pause RunKeeper at them… Whoops).

So it’s been quite a long time since the last time I sat down to write a Mental Health Monday post, and today’s topic is one that is very close to my heart.

Overexercising.

Or, more specifically, what exactly is overexercising?

The term is pretty common. You see it everywhere in the forms of magazine articles, health website posts, and even in those little ads that you see on the sides of the webpages that you are browsing.

Are You Over Exercising? 5 Signs Of Overtraining.

How To Tell If You Are Overtraining.

Science Finds That Too Much Exercise Can Lead To Weight Gain.

Wow. If there is so much talk on the issue of over exercising/compulsive exercise/overtraining, then surely there must be a great amount of awareness surrounding the issue, right?

Unfortunately, that does not seem to be the case.

See, the lines of what is too much exercise is a very blurry one. I mean, pro athletes train for hours every day and often train twice a day. They aren’t over exercising. In fact, they are arguably some of the healthiest people out there.

So where does that leave us? If pro-athletes can train every day, then who are we to think that our *need* to exercise for 30 minutes every day with no rest days ever is too much? It can’t be, now can it?

I have a very strong opinion of what exactly over exercising is. Now, keep in mind that this is purely my theory, and has no real scientific backing. However, as someone who has struggled with an eating disorder that manifested itself as an exercise addiction for quite some times, I do like to think that I am fairly knowledgeable about this particular issues.

Now, when I say compulsive exercise, what exactly do I mean?

The NEDA (National Eating Disorder Association) references compulsive over exercising in their definition of the anorexia subtype called, “anorexia athletica.”

Anorexia Athletica (Compulsive Exercising)

Anorexia athletica is a condition where people over-exercise because they believe this will control their bodies and give them a sense of power, control and self-respect. It isn’t a clinically recognized diagnosis in the same way that anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are, but compulsive exercising can have serious health consequences.

Symptoms of anorexia athletica include:

Exercising more than is good for our health.
Being fanatical about our weight and diet.
Taking time off work, school and relationships to exercise.
Focusing on the challenge exercise poses and forgetting that it can be fun.
Believing that our self-worth depends on our physical performance.
Rarely being satisfied by what we achieve physically.                                                           Saying that this exercise is okay because we are athletes, or insisting that the behavior is healthy.

(Source)

Now, I know that whilst anorexia athletica always includes excessive/compulsive exercise, over exercising does not always mean that one has anorexia athletica. However, I would definitely argue that over exercising often has less to do with the amount that you are exercising and more to do with the mentality that surrounds/backs your compulsive exercise.

So some questions to ask yourself could be:

Do I exercise because I want to? Or do I do it because I feel like I am a failure/will gain a million pounds overnight/will be looked at as lazy etc. if I don’t?

If there is a day where I truly can’t workout, will it completely destroy my day? Will I obsess over this one missed day of exercise for weeks to come?

Do I put working out over spending quality time with family and friends? Do I avoid making plans if it cuts into my workout schedule?

Do I not allow myself to take off if I am sick or injured? 

If you answered yes to these questions, then your mind is definitely not in the right place for exercising.

Also, obviously you can kind of tell that you are over training (even if you are in complete denial of this fact and push the thought to the back of your mind) when you are constantly fatigued, start dreading your workouts, or begin to feel sickly often. These are obvious symptoms and are always the first to be mentioned in those magazine/web articles that I referenced earlier in this post.

One thing that I don’t ever see in these articles is something that I believe to be the number one most crucial factor in determining what exactly it means to be over exercising.

Your caloric intake vs. the amount of exercise that you are doing.

Sure professional athletes can workout for hours a day and not be accused of overexercising, but these athletes are also eating a ton to make sure that their body is properly fueled for this level of training. However, if you are eating a calorie deficient diet and exercising for hours a day, you are literally destroying yourself.

Think about it, we all too often see this (idiotic) idea that women should be consuming 1200 calories a day if they want to lose weight. Firstly, that is complete nonsense. Unless you are obscenely short (and even then, this is often way too low), your body needs more than 1200 calories per day just to perform its necessary functioning for survival. Now, add exercise, even if it is just 30 minutes per day, each and every day, into the equation and you very likely will now have (depending on the workout that you do) a net caloric intake of less than 1000 calories. You are literally preventing your body from properly being able to fulfill it’s job of keeping you alive… And yet you are expecting it to support and give you energy for working out? It doesn’t work like that. Keeping you alive is your body’s priority.

So what is over exercising?

I firmly believe that the term over exercising is completely relative. There is no set amount of time or intensity level or frequency of workouts that can tell you whether or not you are over training. It all depends on your mentality surrounding exercise, and whether or not you are adequately fueling your body to support your level of activity, whatever it may be.

Moral of the story? DO NOT COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS.

Just because someone can run ten miles a day and be perfectly healthy doesn’t mean that you should ignore that you are feeling the symptoms of over working your body while running 3 miles a day. That other person is not you. They do not eat the same food. They do not eat the same amount. They are not at the same stage of life as you. They do not live in the same environment as you. What they can do should never influence how you feel about what you can do and what you should do. You are your own person and I cannot emphasize enough how important it is that you acknowledge that fact and listen to your body. You know yourself best, and you know when something is not quite right.

Never let the fear of not being enough prevent your own personal growth and healing.

Thank you for reading. I’ll talk to you guys tomorrow =).

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The First Real Day


Hey all! 

Workout: Treadmill interval workout from FitSugar.

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I changed the workout up slightly by increasing the speed by .5-1 throughout, running at 6-6.5mph during the walking bits, and running at a .5 incline when it said to run at .00 incline.

Also, I showed you guys that I got new running shoes the other day right?

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I decided to try out Brooks PureFlow 2s, and I have to say that I am absolutely loving them. I have only run in them twice (long run on Sunday and my intervals today), so I can’t exactly give a full review yet. So far they are nice and light, yet they still keep my ankles stable (important for me) and they fit nicely which is rare since I have really bizarrely shaped feet.

However, I have THE most gnarly blisters on the back of my heels. I seriously wanted to cry at certain points during this mornings workout… For the most part I was super happy during my workout though!

 

 

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Incline running is no joke. 

Also, what is it about school gyms and not having the air conditioners on? I thought I was suffocating throughout my workout!

 

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Nothing that a little iced coffee can’t fix though ;).

So today marks my first official day of classes (actually it was Thursday… but I told you a little about that whole fiasco), and my first full day of being “away” at school. I put away in quotes because I’m like…a half an hour train ride from home so I don’t know if it really counts.

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I tried to be a girl. All the lights fell off the wall. Command hooks, you have betrayed me.

So I set out to make today a good one. I got up at 6 (set my alarm for 6:30, but oh well), worked out, had a nutritious breakfast, took a nice shower. All was well and good. I walked the 2 miles to school, which would normally be super nice because New York is the greatest place ever, but between the heat and humidity and the blisters on my feet…I probably should have taken the subway. 

I finally arrived (very sweaty and disheveled I might add… Here’s to making good first impressions) to find a note posted on my classroom door that the class had been changed. I followed what I (correctly) assumed to be others who were in the same class over to the building and room that the class was now apparently supposed to be in, and… Get this.

The teacher never showed up.

We sat there for 40 minutes before giving up. 

So now I am 0 for 2 in this whole “getting to class” thing.

I have to leave in around 15 minutes for my next class (which also happens to be the one that I couldn’t find on Thursday), so here’s hoping the third time is the charm!

I will say though, minus the whole classroom-changing-teacher-never-showing-up debacle… Today has been ok! My roommate hasn’t been here yet, so I have just been on my own,and I kind of like that. Yes, I really want and need to make friends, but at the same time, I am enjoying having time alone with myself. The city is such a wonderful and inspiring place. When I am walking through the streets from my housing to my school, I can’t shake the feeling that this, this city, is where I need to be. Where I am supposed to be. I don’t know.

Also, I have to say that people watching in the city is such an amazing way to find inspiration for characters in the stories that I write. I have always dreamed of being a novelist, and I have a few novels in the works currently. It just seems that I can never bring myself to make the time (which is absurd because I definitely have the time) to sit down and just write. This being alone with myself while still being surrounded by thousands of people in a big city is filling me with inspiration and drive to really get back into writing. I’m thinking of bringing my laptop over to Central Park on Thursday since I don’t have class until 4:10 that day and just writing. 

I don’t know how to describe how I am feeling right now. I still feel down and numb and really anxious and not ok… But I feel something else as well.

I think it’s hope.

And now I am off to go pick up some bandaids for my blisters to make the commute to school a little less painful.

Until tomorrow my friends!

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recovery

Fat Is Not A Feeling


Hey all!

Workout –  I had originally planned on swimming this morning since I haven’t in a long time… But quite honestly, I just wasn’t feeling it.

Instead, I went for Insanity Asylum’s Game Day. Definitely my favorite workout from the Asylum vol. 1 version of Insanity.

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No Shaun T… It most certainly does not.

Breakfast – Breakfast was kind of sort of super exciting today. Actually, it’s always exciting… I just really love smoothie bowls guys.

But what made today’s meal extra special was this little guy.

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Dragon fruit!

You guys may have seen that I went to the asian grocery store near my home yesterday and came home with one (way too expensive) fun new fruit to try! 

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I really wasn’t expecting dragon fruit to be as mild as it is! I thought it would be sweeter, but it actually doesn’t have all that much flavor (or at least mine didn’t). Very nice and refreshing and I loved the crunch of all the little seeds in my smoothie. 

Plus, it’s just a really cool fruit to look at!

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So what I want to address today is something that I have (obviously) been struggling with for quite some time.

Feeling fat.

We have all, at one point or another, thought or uttered something along the lines of, “I feel fat today.” I mean, I know that I personally am guilty of saying that exact sentence (often accompanied by an “ugh”) at least once a day, often more.

But here’s the funny thing, fat is not a feeling.

Look at any list of the spectrum of emotions and I will guarantee you that never once will you find the word fat there. Happy? Yes. Angry? Yes. Disgruntled? Indeed. Fat? Nope.

You know what fat actually is? A macronutrient. 

Yes, fat can also be used as an adjective in describing a creature with an excessive amount of, well, fat. Fat is a substance. Fat is not a state of being.

Recently, I have been finding that I have been having “fat days” more often than not. And what is a “fat day” you ask? Well dear reader, a “fat day” is defined (by me) as one of those days where you wake up and the first thing that comes to mind upon getting up and moving your body is, “Ugh, I feel/am so fat today.”

Now here’s the thing, while some of those “fat days” that people have sometimes have a reasoning, whether it be a PMS symptom, a result of eating too much salt the night before, etc.. More often than not, the person having the “fat day” will, in fact, look and weight the same as he/she did the day before. They just can’t see it.

It’s all about perspective. 

The funny thing about feeling fat is how completely normal it seems in todays society, when, in fact, it is one of the most nonsensical idea/statement there is. How can you “feel” something that is not an emotion. I don’t wake up and say, “I feel protein today.” It’s basically the same thing.

I found this little cartoon online that I believe sums up the topic of fat as a feeling absolutely perfectly.

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So there you have it. Next time you find yourself “feeling fat,” I need you to promise me that you will remind yourself that you can’t feel fat. It’s not a state of being. 

Also, you are not fat. You are a person, a wonderful shining human being with hopes and dreams and ambitions and what is, I bet, a kick-butt personality to boot.

You are not fat, you have fat. You also have bones and organs and muscles. You are not any of those things either. 

I just need you to know that you are you and that in itself is something to cherish and be proud of. 

I hope you all have a wonderful night and I will talk to you tomorrow Good night =)

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life, recovery

A Commitment to Change


Hey!

Workout: 4 miles at 8:42 min/mile average pace + Turbo Fire HIIT 20.

I was pressed for time this morning, as I had to make a train into the city for my housing orientation. Although the commute into the city is only about a half an hour, between walking to the train station, the train ride, walking from the station to the subway, and taking the subway to my building… It takes a long time.

I was honestly really freaking out about orientation today. The prospect of meeting new people in itself is enough to throw me into a state of panic, throw that on top of being in a new environment with knowing absolutely no one, and being sicker than I have been in a  long long time (I was coughing up a lung the entire orientation, girl know how to make a first impression =P)… It was just a mess.

It did wind up being a lot better than I thought it would be though! We played icebreaker games (my least favorite thing to do) and I met a couple of really sweet girls that live on my floor. Already I can tell that the bulk of people at my new school (at least those living on my floor) radiate a much better energy than those at my old school did. I didn’t get that snobby “I’m so much better than you,” and, “All I want to do is drink and party,” vibe from anyone, so I’m happy about that =).

Also, can we just discuss the epic-ness that was last night’s VMAs?!?!

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Like… How? I’m not fully convinced that Beyonce is not actually a robot. One person can not be this talented and flawless while also being a good person.

And what about Miley’s charity? I loved it.

I just live for award shows though. They are one of my (many) guilty pleasures.

Now onto a more serious topic.

I’m sure that you all are sick of hearing me complaining about the fact that I have gained weight. I’m getting sick of listening to myself complain about it as well. Thing is, I just cry and complain and self-destruct instead of actually doing anything productive to not only stop this process, but to move towards health.

I just let myself remain stuck.

And I’m sick of it.

I don’t know if it is because I have a fever and that is making me overly emotional or what, but I am filled with such a drive to change what I am doing with my diet because I know for a fact that it is not working.

Typically, before I fell into this diet rut, I was eating a predominantly plant-based diet. I was by no means vegan, but was eating vegetarian about 90% of the time, and about 80% of that was vegan. I would have meat in the form of either seafood or chicken maybe once a week, if even that, and the only dairy I was intaking was my lactose free cottage cheese (I really love that stuff) and my occasional froyo (I will never give it up.. I’m sorry). I was eating a higher carb diet with a lower fat and protein count. I was not intentionally trying to limit my fats or my protein, I just happen to enjoy fruits and veggies and starches over most fat and protein sources.. So that was what I ate.

And I was actually feeling good.

One lasting ailment that my eating disorder left me with is a plethora of digestive issues. There is barely a day that goes by without me having a stomach issue of some sort, whether it be extreme pain, bloating, or something else. When I was eating a higher carb and lower fat and protein diet, my digestive issues lessened significantly.

Recently, I can barely stand up, let alone leave the house, due to the amount of pain that my stomach is in. Yesterday, I had to cut my long run short by a mile, and almost wound up cutting my already short run even shorter today due to my stomach feeling so horrible.

So what do I do?

I know that I need to make a change… The only thing is, I don’t even know where to begin. Part of me feels like I should just do the whole raw food thing that seems to basically have become a type of cult recently. But I don’t want to do that. I could also go fully vegan. I don’t want to do that either.

I don’t want to cut out any more foods from my already limited diet. I can’t. Even if it is better for my body, even if I do want to eventually go vegan (although I am not sure if that will ever really happen), I know that I am not mentally in the place to do so. I know that a drastic change to my diet would send me spinning back down the rabbit hole into the arms of my dark passenger. I know that I would get obsessive and unhealthy and that it would just lead to my issues with food manifesting in a whole new way.

However, I do know that I need to go back to really limiting the amount of animal products that I ingest, as well as cut down a little on the amount of fats that I am ingesting. I have been eating way too many nuts and way too much nut butter lately, and I find that it is after eating a large (for me) amount of these things that my stomach starts feeling funny. The symptoms are especially prevalent if I eat high fat foods right before running.

As far as protein goes, I am in no position, nor do I have any desire, to limit my intake of it. However, I am not going to constantly freak out about needing to get a ton of protein with each meal. I would rather my meals be based around vegetables with my protein as a small compliment to the meal than it being the other way around.

I also need to stop with my constant snacking.. I honestly think that I may take in more calories through my snacking all day than I do from my actual meals. Yeah, it’s that bad.

Some other goals I have for myself include finishing Dr. Cambell’s (the author of The China Study) book Whole.

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 It is a really great read and I was truly enjoying it. I just haven’t been making the time to sit and read it. I believe that I will be able to get a lot out of this book, and hope to read The China Study as well. I am also contemplating reading one of Dr. McDougall’s books. I am not quite sure which one I should go for, or it will even be beneficial to me. For all I know, it could just be another cult favorite book geared towards the members of a certain movement. I have just heard great things about McDougall’s program, but I will need to do a bit more research on him, his work, and those that follow his lifestyle before purchasing anything from him.

With going away to school and having to be very careful about what groceries I buy, live on a strict budget, and cook my meals in my dorm room with nothing but a microwave and a Magic Bullet, I feel that now is as good a time s ever to really revamp the way that I am eating.

I am so sick and tired of being upset over my appearance and actually being embarrassed by the way I eat and my eating habit.

It is time to make a change. Let’s see what happens.

Question(s): What is the best diet/lifestyle book that you have ever read?

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