How to be Healthy and Free
I thought counting calories and weighing myself everyday would somehow fix all my problems.
I have struggled with control over my weight, my size, my food and my workouts for several years. I thought counting calories and weighing myself everyday would somehow fix all my problems. In my mind, if I could just lose weight and finally be “skinny,” then I would be happy.
After bouts of total control over every aspect of my health, I would say “screw it” and try to live my life like everyone else. I would ignore the number, and end up binging. This yo-yoing lifestyle went on for a while.
After years of beating myself up over not being a certain number on the scale, I couldn’t do it any longer. I was sick and tired of viewing food as numbers and denying myself certain foods because of how many calories they contained.
This past summer I made it a point to focus my energy on learning about nutrition and figuring out what foods work best for me and my body. For a couple of weeks, I vowed I wouldn’t weigh myself. I wanted to see how my body reacted to new, different foods.
I found freedom when I let go of the numbers. It was tough, but, now, I feel more energized than ever before. I have more mental clarity because I'm not constantly filling my mind with negative thoughts about food. Some weight has come off, and I fit into my clothes better. When I stopped stressing over food, I felt free.
Trust me, this wasn’t an easy journey. Eating fresh and whole foods — no matter the calories — makes my body feel fantastic. I’d much rather eat a banana with almond butter over a 100-calorie pack of chips.
Here’s my advice:
Step away from the scale. If that scares you, good. Even if it’s just for one day, take a break, put your mind at ease, and channel your energy toward something more productive.
Focus on eating healthy (and wholesome) foods, and don’t count calories. A banana filled with vitamins will benefit your body better than a “low-calorie” snack filled with chemicals. It’s not worth it.
If you want a piece of cake, eat it. I’ve turned down festivities countless times in fear of indulging. Everything in moderation is something to live by. It’s okay to treat yourself.
If you struggle with the scale and need someone to talk to, contact Auburn’s Student Counseling Services at 334-844-5123, or visit their offices in the Student Center to schedule an appointment.
Be well, Auburn.
Photography: Cat S.