Category Archives: Recovery Tip Tuesday

Recovery Tip Tuesdays: Throw out Your Old Jeans!*

jeansThat’s right, I said it.

Yes, I’m talking about that all-hallowed, smallest-size-you-ever-fit-into jeans.

Yes, those!

(Or donate them to some nice organization. ¬†Whatever you prefer ūüôā )

I feel like that revered pair of jeans is a part of most women’s closets. ¬†They even made a Sex and the City episode about it (Remember, when Miranda fit into her No Excuses jeans from high school and instantly was able to flirt with a hot guy? ¬†Funny episode, but c’mon.).

Why, you ask?

If you hold onto a pair of jeans that is smaller than what you are now, you will always be comparing yourself to that number. ¬†You’ll always be wishing you were that size again. ¬†You’ll always be wanting to be smaller. ¬†And, as our great friend the Buddha taught us, distress and unhappiness take place when we reside in the “wanting” of anything. ¬†When we accept where we are now, we are happier (and I’m betting, if you actually want to lose some weight in a healthy way, it will come off easier when you stop thinking about numbers in general. ¬†Throw away the jeans, put away the scale, stop counting calories or fat grams or sugar grams or WHATEVER.)

A personal anecdote –

I had this size (bleep!) skirt that I bought sophomore year in high school. ¬†It was blue satin, was bought in Harvard Square, and everyone commented on how thin I looked in it. ¬†Years later, when I was a few sizes up, I still had it. ¬†It sat in the back of the closet and teased me. ¬†It taunted me. ¬†“Why aren’t you this weight?” it said.

So, I got sick of its bullshit and threw it out.

Today, I have a closet that’s full of stretchy, one-size-fits-most type clothing. ¬†It works for me.

Today, I’m throwing the question out to you guys – what tips have worked in your quest for good body image?

*Remember, what works for me may not work for you.  Proceed at your own risk.

Recovery Tip Tuesdays: Join A Group!

talkingYeah, yeah, I know, everyone loves self-help support groups.  Everyone loves crawling on hands and knees out of their isolation and entering a room of strangers only to immediately become vulnerable.

But if this introvert could do it, so can you!  I promise!

If you are lucky enough to live in Massachusetts, MEDA is a fabulous ED resource center that has weekly support group for a range of ED behaviors and a range of ages.  If you click here you can view the list of groups they currently run.

If you live in the NYC area, NEDA now hosts support groups.  Find out how to attend here!

And last but certainly not least, they do have Eating Disorder Anonymous meetings, albeit in limited locations.  Find out if they have one near you here!  (And if not, they have online meetings as well!)

Seriously. ¬†Even if you don’t make any lifelong friends (I didn’t, to be honest) you will at least be getting out of your house for the night, perhaps preventing binging behaviors. ¬†So try it!

Recovery Tip Tuesdays: Set Point Theory

acceptanceGood ol’ set point theory. ¬†What is it?

The idea that all of our bodies have their unique set point, a number, give or take 5-10 lbs, that our body likes to reside at when it’s healthy and we’re feeding it well.

One of the biggest breakthroughs I experienced in my ED recovery was accepting my set point.

(Which is a tall order, I do realize.  Acceptance can be a bit of a bitch to work through)

And my set point is pretty average. ¬†Coming from a family of Irish-German “Campbell Soup Kids”, I realized I was never going to be 110 lbs soaking wet (sorry for the rare number), once I was able to see through the irrationalities of my eating disorder. ¬†It just wasn’t going to happen, unless I engaged in superhuman exercise and dangerous restriction every day. ¬†Which, was alarming to my ED at first. ¬†My ED wanted to fight my body. ¬†Screw you, it said to my body. ¬†I’ll show you. ¬†You can be different.

However, once I accepted it, set point theory was…relaxing, actually. ¬†It comforted me, because if I fed my body the way my nutritionist told me to, it would never screw me over. ¬†It would never put me at an obese weight I feared…it would put me right where I belong.

(But there was quite a fight to get to that acceptance.  Think: A crying, binging sometimes, scratching, screaming fight.)

I still have to check myself fairly daily on this when my ED starts luring me into lesser-weight land.

What do you think?  Have you accepted your body type, your set point?  If not, what steps do you have to take to obtain that acceptance?

*What works for me may not work for you.  Proceed at your own risk.

Recovery Tip Tuesdays: Avoiding Fashion Magazines

When I was 15 and obsessed with Hollywood, I LOVED fashion magazines.  I pored through them, gazing longingly at the designer outfits that hung off the waif-thin frames.  I was entranced by all of it.  I wanted to be a part of it.  I felt like I could obtain the celebrity they had because of the massive amount of weight I had lost already.  I was that thin.

fashionmags

But as time went on, I became sicker from my disease and found that keeping up with the Kate Moss’s and the Halle Berry’s of the world became harder and harder. ¬†I started to resent myself whenever I saw them or leafed through InStyle, because I wasn’t measuring up. ¬†I was heavier. ¬†I became disgusted with myself.

And when I finally started to recover, I noticed that picking up those magazines was like a slippery slope back into comparison-world. ¬†I didn’t have the clothes they had. ¬†I was 20 lbs. heavier than some movie stars. ¬†The head would start spinning.

So today, I don’t read them at all.* ¬†You probably know by now that a study¬†was done back in 2007 that proved that women, regardless of weight, feel worse about themselves after looking at a fashion mag.

That being said…I had to mention something my friend Liz passed along today (trigger warning)

The latest issue of Allure mentioned Zoe Saldana’s weight on the COVER. ¬†Unnecessary, yes?

Sorta like, “Hey, look at her! ¬†She’s tiny and we thought we’d just shove it in your faces and remind you!”

Ugh, yet another reason to steer clear.

* What works for me may not work for you.  Proceed at your own risk.