You're not alone in this – I've been there too.
Before I truly became my own health ally (instead of constantly feeling like my own body was against me), I was 15 pounds heavier, depressed, self-conscious, and silently suffering from chronic pain and digestive issues that never seemed to leave me alone.
It wasn't as if I hadn't tried to become healthier. I did kick-boxing, I swam, I lifted weights, I ate vegetables, I limited starches, I counted calories, I read countless health blogs and magazine articles... but it didn't matter. In fact, it got worse. I became anorexic to try to control my body and then binge-ate because I couldn't satisfy my hunger. Then, my body revolted at the treatment, and I developed IBS and fibromyalgia. I became full of shame and was ready to give up.
Nothing I did over the years worked because I was treating my body like it was an enemy, like something to control that was out of control. It was a "me versus me" scenario.
Once I understood that my body wasn't attacking me but desperately trying to communicate with my brain, everything changed. I learned to speak my body's language – interpret what it was trying to tell me and then implement healthful practices like yoga, meditation, and self-massage to help it heal.
Along the way, I learned positive nutrition habits and developed fun recipes that met my cravings for pasta, pizza, and other trigger foods. I also got clear on why I wanted to become healthy once and for all, and I discovered that my calling in life or dharma is to help others feel vibrant too.
Through all these slow, sustainable changes, I was able to shed the extra weight, build strength, understand my body, and learn to love myself just as I was at each phase of my journey.
You can too.
Reiki Master Teacher, Usui Method via Master Joanne Brohmer
Holistic Nutritionist In-Training (CTNC), Institute of Transformational Nutrition
Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance (RYT 200), Peacebank Yoga Studio
University of Chicago, M.A. Humanities; emphasis in English, curriculum design
Carleton College, B.A. English