~My Lifestyle Goals~

As I promised I’d post earlier, here are a list of small things I want to change about my lifestyle that can actually make a big difference. In no particular order:

1. Wean myself off of any kind of sweeteners in my coffee. Sugars not great, artificial sweeteners like Equal aren’t really better. Going to try to get on coffee with skim milk only.

2. Cut down to washing my hair every other day instead of every day. I’ve already started this, and it makes me happy because my hair is much healthier and I can now get away with it because it seems like I’m finally growing out of my ever-greasy teenager hair that I had to wash daily just to keep looking clean. 

3. Start drinking smoothies. Not talking about the smoothie shop kind, I mean the kind you make at home in your blender with no added nonsense.

4. Limit ordering pizza and going for Chinese to once a month, not one or two times a week. This seems like it should be easy, but those are two of my biggest cravings aside from chocolate, so they’re going to be harder to kick than I’d like.

5. Related to the last one, learn to manage my cravings better. I tend to carbo-load at night and overdo it on sugary foods, because honestly, desserts and sugary drinks are like a type of drug with how addictive they are. If I can learn to eat healthier things and kick my cravings, I’ll feel a lot better about myself.

6. Don’t eat frozen dinners as snacks. And on that note, being a small girl and not a huge burly hungry man who needs to eat 3000 calories a day just to keep kicking, I should probably quit eating both the Hot Pockets at once. 

7. Go to the library more often. I feel like my grades are going to improve so much from this. I focus and get a hell of a lot more done when I set aside the library for work, and my room for relaxing (and Netflix). 

8. DRINK MORE WATER. I’m really bad about this because I have a really small and overly efficient bladder, and whenever I try to get the daily recommended eight to ten cups, I pee an obnoxiously large amount. It gets annoying when I have to get up and go during and between every class. But I guess I’ll just have to learn to suck it up and train my bladder to hold water without being a little bitch. 

9. Moisturize more. Since I have relatively oily skin I tend to not do that much, but it’s best to start now while I’m young.

10. Learn to accept myself more. This one is probably the most important, and also requires the least amount of explanation.

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Body Liberation

So doing a lot of investigation into why I put on weight over the last half a year (as well as a ton of Americans all the time), and what I’m getting out of all my research is that sugar is a huge weight-gain cause. I feel like I am l great example about what I like to call sugar overload can do to your body.

Getting to college gave me the freedom to eat what I wanted, when I wanted. After growing up in a very health-conscious home (not saying I was ever really “skinny,” I have a naturally curvy hourglass figure so it’s in my genes not to be model-thin), my mom is an extremely healthy cooker and never let junk food into our house. So when I moved out to the world of “you can order pizza with your school meal plan,” “there’s a bagel shop on campus!,” and “you’ll be eating dinner in a buffet-style cafeteria every night,” I went overboard. Which is a common problem.

My main two issues:

1. I overdid it on desserts and at dinner almost nightly. It was bad. The desserts aren’t even that high of quality: they’re just very tempting, and they will “hijack your brain” like a drug and make you want more and more of them once you start.

2. I made best friends with Dominos and carbo-loaded WAY, WAY more than was necessary at night. Carbs from things like white bread and pasta are just sugar in a clever disguise: once you eat those things, your body turns them into sugars to use as energy, unfortunately, it’s way more sugar than your body needs.

Those two combined has made me into a very bloated, very unhappy girl. I haven’t been getting nearly enough vegetables, or healthy forms of dairy. I used to drink milk almost every night, and after getting to college that habit went kablooey, mostly because I was just busy and didn’t have time to relax with a glass of milk at night, or drink one at breakfast. That’s changing now too. I’m not saying DRINK A TON OF MILK YOU’LL BE SKINNY because obviously overdoing it on anything is going to mess you up, but dairy is really good to have in your diet, in healthy forms such as Greek yogurt (which after battling with for three years I have finally come to love), and skim milk.

Regardless. My problems were apparent: too much cheesy-stuffed cheesy bread, not enough nearly enough vegetables. So after a small mental breakdown on Monday night after my body felt worn and sad from the way I’d been treating it, I decided to finally make a lasting change.

To be clear: this isn’t a diet. I’m not cutting ANYTHING out. This is not temporary. I need to make a change in my lifestyle because if I keep eating the way I do, not only will I be unhappy with my weight, but I will be pretty unhealthy pretty fast. I am not going to stop eating processed sugars altogether because, guess what, that’s nearly impossible. They are in almost everything, from ice cream to bread to ketchup. However, I will be cutting down on them because they took up a large part of my diet and that is really just not good.

I’m still going to eat pizza. I’m still going to eat reduced-fat strawberry cream cheese on my honey whole wheat bagel from Einstein’s because frankly, that is one of my weekly treats to myself. I’m still going to eat frozen yogurt with my family and go out for ice cream with my friends. I’m still going share Waffle House waffles and orange juice with my boyfriend when we go on vacation. But I am going to stop ordering pizza two or three times a week, and definitely stop eating more than one dessert at dinner. In fact, the desserts at dinner are going to be cut out most days because frankly, they are crappy desserts and kind of a waste of calories in most cases.

I’ve been working on this for a whopping two days now (yeah I know great), and it’s been going pretty well so far. Tonight at dinner I had a very healthy brown rice + black bean burrito on a wheat wrap (with no sour cream or guac, sigh). I said no to lame-o desserts and had some pretty kickass grapes and a banana (my favorite fruit right now), and miracle of miracles: I was full. I was full without bread, without pasta, without two pieces of cake or three cookies. This has got to be an ongoing thing, because the moments of self pride I had making healthy choices was great.

I’m taking a little slogan I heard on the documentary I’m watching (Hungry for Change, I think I blogged about it earlier this week): When you change your mind from “I want that, but I can’t have it,” to “I can have that, but I don’t want it,” that’s when you’re going to really feel a difference in your life. I absolutely LOVE that idea. I am not going to stop myself from having dessert when I feel like it, or maybe eating a hot pocket for lunch sometimes because I need something really fast that’s not in smoothie form. But when I see those poorly-made desserts or the often rock-hard bread rolls at dinner, I just think “If I really want that, I can have it. But I don’t want it.” And I feel loads better. It’s great. Because when I take think about those types of thing I overeat, especially in the cafeteria, instead of just auto-grabbing them up, I realize that I don’t even really want about 80% of them. It’s liberating.

I’ll be posting about this a lot, so I hope I don’t annoy any of my loverly readers. Thank you all, by the way. I look at every blog who follows me and will more often than not follow back, because I love to read the interesting things other people have to say. I am really honored that so many of you have decided to follow me and like/comment on my posts. The little inner squeal of glee I get when a notification pops up on my phone makes me feel great about myself.

Now, I’m going to do some real studying because golly gee, looks like I’m in college and have midterms next week, how excellent. I’ll post more later about my ~healthy goals~ that should be fun. Once again, love you all. Thanks for the support. ❤

Documentary Watching and Overeating

I made the mistake of drinking a caffe mocha at 7:00 p.m. to kickstart my homework binge, and while it definitely did its job, it slipped my mind that every time I drink coffee after six it keeps me up until at least two a.m.  On the bright side, I got all of my work done, plus wrote out two thank-you notes, applied for pen pal-ship on a pen pal blog, talked to Alex, and found some documentaries to watch. And it’s only one a.m., imagine that.

Tonight’s documentaries have very different subject matter. One is Hungry for Change, about the dieting, weightloss, and food industries, which is always a subject I’m interested in. The other is Bronies, which has an obvious subject. I’ve started on Bronies, and so far it’s definitely fascinating. It’s an aspect of “nerd culture” I’ve never exactly understood, but my opinion of the Bronies (and really any other fandom) is that of to each his/her own. I’m not going to judge you one what you do and don’t like. It’s how you treat yourself and the way you treat other people that’s the most important. There’s nothing wrong with liking something or someone, as long as you don’t constantly shove it in everyone’s faces/force it upon other people. This goes for musicians and religions too, just saying. Pretty much anything. *cough*.

Not much else really going on in my life. Weight still an issue. I’m frustrated and continue to lack any sort of willpower. Is there something I can do to improve my self control? Because when I feel hungry, I want to eat. I wish I made better choices…it’s just difficult because of the limited availability of healthy but filling foods here at college.

Does anyone know of any foods that help control cravings, especially at night? That and the period between lunch and dinner are my toughest times, because I always want to snack at night no matter what I eat for dinner, and if I don’t eat between lunch and dinner (which I often don’t have time to do because of my class schedule), I will almost definitely over-eat at dinner, especially because our goddamn cafeteria is buffet-style.

Help, my readers. Help.

My First Stream-of-Conciousness Post

Okay, here we go. I have actually never written anything in this style before. Sometimes I like reading books this way, though.

My friends are taking seemingly forever to finish their movie. I wish I didn’t have to be that prick who actually needs to lug her ass to the school library to get work done for real. My room is just too distracting for some reason. The library is nice and serene, and I concentrate a lot more on what I’m doing than if I’m lounging in my room. If I’m in my room I’m going to want and sit naked and eat noodles and watch The Office on netflix, and none of those things get me any closer to finishing whatever thing it is I have do tomorrow.

There are so many people constantly coming in and out of this shop. Some of them are acquaintances I guess, but for some reason I have these moods where I’m either super shy and put my headphones in and while I’m in an obvious public place, it’s like I’m hiding. Other times I’m quite extroverted. It’s a constant back and forth, really. The same kind of back and forth that goes on about the thoughts I have on my own body which can fluctuate in positivity (and negativity) literally several times in an hour. It’s ridiculous. Is this because of hormones? Damn everything.  Jesus Christ, I don’t even know if this is actual stream of consciousness or me just typing on and on without actually pausing to think deeply or correct anything. Am I wasting my time? Someone answer this for me.

Everybody here has people with them. I am alone. I must look strange because I am typing furiously and painfully sculpting my facial muscles so I don’t have to constantly display my chronic bitchface to the world. I’m not sure what I want. I don’t want to be in my room right now. I should spend less time in my room, because being in my room only results in me sleeping, not getting anything done, eating too much, or all of the above. I’m not actually doing anything ACADEMICALLY productive right now, but at least I’m not stuffing my fat face with lean cuisines like they’re snacks.

I have to preserve my lean cuisines because I am insanely stupid and spent all my money. I need to actually physically write down a budget or I am going to officially fail at adulthood. Or go into debt. Both. God. My mom said using cash instead of my card would help me spend less, but that doesn’t work for me for some reason. The ease of having the cash on hand just helps it slip through my fingers faster. But on the other hand, with cash I can’t online shop, which is a bad problem of mine. So either way, until I learn control, I’m really screwed.

That’s what I’m going to do this week. As soon as I get my paycheck I’m going to figure out if I can cash it or deposit it here in town, and then I am going to write myself out a budget plan for it because I am a ridiculous idiot who cannot seem to make good financial decisions otherwise. There will be nice, neat little categories for food, gas, and a tiny little one for shopping. There will be special ones too depending on what’s happening that month, like I’ll have to set aside some money to help Alex on our trip and set aside special spending money for New York.

I wish I hadn’t blown through all my money so fast. I almost cried last night because I felt so goddamn stupid. I was spending a lot when I had my card, but not like this. I’m telling you, the cash is making it worse.

These kinds of things make me feel like a failure. All the instances I ever feel like a failure are because I have no control. I cave and spend a bunch of money I shouldn’t. I cave and order food and stuff myself even though I know it’s making me fat. No self control or willpower. Am I stupid?

At War With My Own Body

I am rapid-typing this post. That means no proofreading, no thinking, things are just flowing straight from my brain to my fingers and neurons are firing and all sorts of things are happening and it’s because I am in one of these moods where I cannot type nearly as fast as my thoughts are moving and I have so many things pent up inside of me that this happens, this happens every time. So I apologize now for typos and runons. As a journalist and pretty prolific writer, such things usually bother me, but today is not one of those days.

Today was weird in many ways. I feel like my body is out of control. I have the silly notion that my weight is the one thing that is stopping me from being the woman I truly want to be. I am intelligent, and attractive on almost all other aspects (not to sound conceited or anything, but my hair has gotten really healthy and with a good coat of makeup I look quite smashing, aside from the fat face). Being invited to the national college media convention in NYC is skyrocketing my school journalism career and will be introducing me to so many amazing things. These are good things, and I like good things. These are the good things that keep me sane and balanced when I’m on the breaking point, which I am right now.

I truly wish I could just stop eating, but I cannot. I am learning to control myself, but the battle to control my cravings and not overeat is so much harder than I ever thought it would be. And frankly, I cannot go back to bulimia again, purely for the sake of my teeth, which are one of my nice redeemable features after a little whitening and the three years of dental work they went through. The throwing up was destroying them, and of course, killing me. But I can’t help but feel jealous of two years ago me. She was so much lighter.

I feel like I am slowly falling apart. I am hungry for so many things: food, attention, acceptance, likability, money, and mostly definitely food. I am a hungry person. I seem so much more hungry than any of my friends. I want it all to stop. I want it under control. I want my body under control. I want my life under control.

Today I worked out for so long that I burned a few more calories than I ate. I know that it is wrong and while exercise is good for me, I overdid it and pushed it to the brink of being unhealthy. But I cannot help but feel satisfied with myself for pushing that hard. It is sickening how proud I feel. I don’t want that feeling to be there. I want to wake up tomorrow and be skinny without all the physical and mental torture I am suddenly putting myself through.

The weight I’ve gained in college upsets me greatly. I hate it so much and I want my high school body back, as lame as that sounds. I didn’t appreciate it at the time, but if I got back down to that weight again I would never take it for granted. I would never take fitting into my size 5 pants for granted again.

I want to escape.

Not to Sound Conceited: A Positive Post About the Author

Before I start writing what I want to write, I just want to give a nod to all the people who have followed me the past couple weeks. I really appreciate that you all care what I have to say; it means a lot to me, it really does. Secondly, I want to give another nod to whoever read/liked my last post regarding my body image. It makes me feel like I actually have some supporters out there.

In lieu of the fact that I was a very good girl today who did not overeat and went to the gym despite lingering Zumba-legs. It is really nice to know that I can eat a limited amount of calories (I’m trying to lose a couple pounds mostly so I can fit into my old pants. I’m a broke college student; I do not have money for a whole new set of chub pants like I sometimes have to get when I gain weight) without starving myself/going hungry. I ate a reasonable amount. One helpful part being that I didn’t eat dinner in the school cafeteria because I had a meeting during my usual dinnertime. The cafeteria at my college is probably the #2 factor in my weight gain since getting here; I always over-indulge on the variety of buffet-style food FYI to anyone who cares, I’m going to say that’s #2 because I believe the #1 reason is my EXCESSIVE snacking on things that are not supposed to be snacks. Like whole loaves of Dominos cheesy bread. Yikes, Sarah.

I digress.  After discussing this issues I have with my body, I thought I would discuss a few things I like about myself.

My confidence is getting better. I have really pretty eyes, and despite the decrease in my health since getting to college, I’ve been taking better care of my hair, and it’s looking better than it ever has. Honestly my face is not terrible. It’s grown into a nice shape and with a little blush it seems like I actually have some okay cheekbones. I can’t complain about my face at all, which is huge step up from where I was a few years ago.

In regards to my body, it’s not all bad. I have really nice skin, and my figure is really well proportioned. I wish it would shrink down a little bit, but nevertheless.

It is really nice to be able to sit there in front of the mirror and not constantly think that I’m ugly, or even average. Sometimes, I can be really pretty. I feel like the more I work on my inner self, the more it will reflect upon my outer self. I know, I know, that sounds a lot more oddly spiritual that my normal trains of thought, but that’s just the way I’m feeling right now.

The Long-Awaited Post About my Body Issues

I alluded to this a couple weeks ago, and now it’s finally here: the time where I write about the issues I have with my body. There are many individual ones, and there are a couple big ones.

Everyone experiences body insecurity at some point in their lives. My insecure period has been ongoing since I was 12 and my figure “filled out,” as my mother likes to put it.  I am a curvy girl, there is no denying that. I’m not overweight, and I am not a person you would look at and immediately think “oh, she’s fat,” as if that was my defining trait. However, I am locked in a constant and terrifying battle between the part of my mind who sees the cute, sexy hourlgass girl with the bright green eyes who can rule the world, and the other side, who constantly magnifies the parts of myself that I hate the most and almost can’t bear to look at.

This tug of war is ongoing and never seems to let up. Even when I was at what I consider my most attractive, that was incredibly bad because the summer I looked hot was the summer I had an eating disorder. I’ve long gotten past that (thank goodness), but the insecurities about my weight are almost overwhelming. The fact that I’ve definitely gained weight since getting to college and finally being able to eat without the constant judging eyes of my mother does not help whatsoever.

Sometimes, it’s really difficult to hate yourself when your friends constantly say you look fine, when your boyfriend always tells you how gorgeous he thinks you are, and on those days where your outfit and makeup are just spot on and you feel like the world is at your feet. However, it’s possible. My feelings towards my body can fluctuate dramatically within a day, even within a couple hours. I feel a little better with every one of those nice comments, yet still the doubt always remains.

Here’s one straight-up fact: I don’t need to love myself. I know that loving myself all the time is completely unrealistic. All I want is to accept myself. To accept the fact that I’m not perfectly skinny, and I have flaws, and be okay with that. It seems like a tangible enough goal, but then again, it’s always just out of my reach. I am somewhat of a perfectionist and cannot accept my own flaws. I want to fix them, I want to mold myself into the person I really want to be.

On that note, I am feeling extreme self-pressure at this very moment. This morning I woke up and noticed new stretch marks. Again. I am telling myself now: this has to stop. It just has to. I’m not only making myself feel more and more self-conscious, but I’m afraid for my health because there is absolutely one thing to blame in this situation and that is my very poor eating habits since getting to college. I know it’s common, but today, this morning, I have reached my breaking point.

Just to let you know: I do not judge people on their weight. I believe everyone has beauty in them, and it’s up to them whether or not they want to let it show. The flaws I see on myself are ones I know I’m blowing out of proportion, but they plague me nevertheless. I do not see these things when I look in other people. It’s a problem I have, I know. I have made it my mission since I got out of middle school what feels like hundreds of years ago to see the best in people, and in all the years that have passed, that outlook has worked. However, while I see the best in others, I only seem to be able to see the worst parts of myself.

I just wish I had a clear view of myself. I wish I could look at my body from the outside, see myself how my boyfriends see me, see myself how strangers see me. I just want an honest view of myself from another perspective, so maybe I can see the best in me, too.