A lot of people are surprised when they first learn this about me….
𝗜 𝗵𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝗮 𝗵𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗼𝗳 𝘀𝘁𝗿𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗲𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗶𝗻 𝘀𝗲𝗰𝗿𝗲𝘁.
Like… a moment of panic or fear would hit me, and 𝒎𝒚 𝒊𝒏𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒄𝒕 𝒘𝒐𝒖𝒍𝒅 𝒃𝒆 𝒕𝒐 𝒉𝒊𝒅𝒆 in the bathroom or somewhere while stuffing chocolate anything in abundance into my mouth and focus more on the food than the feelings I was trying to avoid feeling. Until, of course, I feel physically ill and sick to my stomach from the sweet, and even “full” physically… but still wouldn’t stop. Instead, I’d then switch to something salty like pickles or chips… until that got to be too much and I’d switch back to sweet again. If I got too miserable, then binging tv would be my next plan of action for 🅽🆄🅼🅱🅸🅽🅶 🅾🆄🆃 the stress swirling in my brain and twisting up my gut.
Why does this surprise people?? Because, well, ya know – I’m in fitness. I’m an instructor, a coach… I HELP people with eating probs, right? Besides, I’m also usually smiling when they see me (and so they’d never guess I have struggled with handling stress healthfully).
But y’all… I’m SO HUMAN. I have a flawed past and I have flaws now. And 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒐𝒏 I have a passion for fitness & helping others establishing healthy lifestyle habits 𝗡𝗢𝗪 is 𝗕𝗘𝗖𝗔𝗨𝗦𝗘 𝗢𝗙 my previous OVERWHELMING struggles with food and using it as a coping mechanism for all of life’s stresses and undealt with trauma.
I have dysfunctional habits that ran my life for years, just like we all do. And I’m still not perfect, but well… I had to FACE them to overcome them.
And the hard truth is… In order to face them, 𝑰 𝒉𝒂𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒔𝒕𝒂𝒓𝒕 𝒍𝒆𝒂𝒓𝒏𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒉𝒐𝒘 𝒕𝒐 𝒓𝒖𝒏 𝒕𝒐 𝒎𝒚 𝑪𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒐𝒓 𝒊𝒏𝒔𝒕𝒆𝒂𝒅 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒄𝒐𝒐𝒌𝒊𝒆𝒔.
I also had to do practical, physical things. 𝑩𝑬𝑭𝑶𝑹𝑬 𝒔𝒕𝒓𝒆𝒔𝒔 𝒉𝒊𝒕 𝒎𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒆𝒏𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒕𝒂𝒌𝒆𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒓, I had to put strategies in place that set me up for making wise nutrition decisions and making them habits… so that WHEN stress did come, I had already put things in place that 🅸🅽🆃🅴🆁🆁🆄🅿🆃🅴🅳 the old patterns and the old ways of binging/stress eating.
Once I took the tools and strategies I was learning from my nutrition program and put them in place, it was no longer as convenient for me to just fall into the old cycle of stuffing sweets in secret… which gave me “space” of time and effort 🅱🅴🆃🆆🅴🅴🅽 the “feeling” of stress and the sudden “urgency to eat” and the actual stress eating itself.
For example… 𝗜 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗽𝗽𝗲𝗱 𝗯𝘂𝘆𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝗼𝗱𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝗜’𝗱 𝗻𝘂𝗺𝗯 𝗼𝘂𝘁 𝗼𝗻.
And this is what would start to happen – It was taking so much EXTRA time for me to scrounge around, trying to find SOMETHING rich and sweet to binge on… and my thoughts/feelings would start to come to the surface 𝒍𝒐𝒏𝒈 𝒆𝒏𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒎𝒆 𝒕𝒐 𝒉𝒆𝒂𝒓 what they were saying, giving me opportunity 𝒕𝒐 𝒕𝒖𝒓𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒎 𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒓 to God and help me 𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒇𝒓𝒐𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒎 before just stuffing them down like I was used to.
My life. my health. my relationship with food. It all changed.
Not all at once, but one stress eating episode at a time.
And isn’t it 𝒋𝒖𝒔𝒕 𝒍𝒊𝒌𝒆 𝑮𝒐𝒅 to take something meant to destroy us, and turn it into something we are called to help others with?
In Sweat & Faith,