Back in early 2016, I was in a new city, career-less, and writing my personal journey with food and running on my blog.
I had just quit teaching a few months before and with our move to Atlanta, I had also just left a 9-5 gig at a start-up.
That February 2016, I sat in our new apartment, afraid to venture out into the world.
I was doing my 4th Whole30 and my social anxiety was at a max.
I felt too nervous to be around unknown foods and eek, go to a coffee shop and let people see that I had no friends? Nope. So I sat in that apartment for 30 days straight while doing my 30 day cleanse.
I was also in the midst of my 100 day running streak. These challenges with numbers were uber popular on the internet, and they helped me stay in line, so I kept doing them.
It's only looking back now that I realize how mean I was being to myself. At the time, I thought I was doing something great for myself.
But looking back, I see that the 0 to 100 with food and with running always left me feeling blah once the countdown was over.
I wasn't motivated to continue on with this new lifestyle when I arrived on day 30 or day 100. I was burnt-out.
The 100 day running streak led to a 2.5 month running hiatus. And the only way I could get myself running again was to train for a marathon. (Ugh.) The 30 day perfect eating streak led to a really icky binge on pizza, chocolate cake, everything.
And then blogging helped me rethink things.
Jaclyn, what if you don't run back to Whole30? What if you have to figure this out?
What if figuring out how to be a moderate eater is what you need to figure out and that's going to take some time?
I wrote on my blog, "What if I am no longer a binge eater? If that's true, if I am no longer a binge eater and I am just a normal eater, I'm imperfect, what does that look like? If I am no longer a binge eater, I am no longer afraid of pizza, so how do I eat pizza?"
And when I say it took some time, it took some time. There is no deadline on this shit.
Your relationship with your significant other or family member doesn't get fixed in 30 days or less.
So why would a rocky relationship with food get fixed in 30 days?
It takes time, and challenges pop up. Like travel, holidays, family deaths, stress, old foods that you haven't eaten in a while.
Just last week, my aunt brought us a package of dates (the dried fruit, a former food I used to binge on) and for a second, "I was like, oh I can't have these in the house!" And then followed it up with, "Yes, I CAN have these in the house."
I talk more about how I went from eating deep fried Oreo's to only kale to learning to eat pizza AND BE KIND TO MYSELF in this podcast episode with my friend Justine.
Here's the bottom line: give yourself time to explore your relationship with food and rebuild it. Ultimatums won't work in your relationship with food as you will always have to eat and sugar will always be somewhere you go. Give yourself time.