3.3.16: resolutions, NEDA & happiness

I love March for many reasons, one being that this month Chris and I have been together for a whole year and it has been one of the greatest of my life! Also, March means the end of winter. Although I live in New England and we have gotten snow in March and April, I am really hoping that history doesn’t repeat itself because I am ready for spring, warmer weather, a nice breeze, and sunshine.

Going through some of my more recent posts I re-read my New Year’s resolutions and I wanted to give an update on that:

Have I been sweating more? Yes and no. I haven’t been as consistent as I would like but, I am finding new exercises that I really enjoy or rather, rediscovering exercises that I really like such as: taking outside walks, cycling, and the stair climber. Finding exercises you like to do is crucial for a healthy relationship with your mind, body and soul. I did however, cancel my gym membership because I have access to a free gym at work but, it does kind of stink that I don’t have a place to workout on the weekends or when I’m on vacation but, that’ll motivate me to get my ass outside more!

I also noted that I wanted to do more yoga well, during that time I was actually practicing almost everyday but, lately not so much. I’ve gone to some classes near my house but, I’ve really neglected my home practice. I was making a lot of progress with my flexibility and I was really excited about the results I was seeing however, I just am a lazy person a lot of the time I won’t lie! When I get home from work I just want to lay in my bed, read, make tea, and watch Netflix. It aggravates me that I am like this because yoga has been the biggest aid in my recovery and when I regularly practice I feel great! I just need to get my ass in gear and do it.

In regards to my resolution to read more: I am reading soooooooooooo much it is crazy and I love it. Reading more was a big resolution for me because I am TV kind of gal. Although I love to read, nothing beats watching some of my favorite shows after a long day but, I really have been on a roll with reading. I even have a Scribd subscription and get some library books on my Kindle Fire. I think in the past three months I have read about five books and I made a Goodreads account that you can find here  and you can add me as a friend and we can talk books.

I’m proud that I’ve actually stuck with a lot of my resolutions because typically I forget them all and never look back. 2016 has been really good to me so far and I am very very thankful. Happiness has never been this present in my whole entire life and I truly owe this happiness to my recovery. I never in a million years would’ve thought that I would be this comfortable and confident in the skin I am in. I won’t lie to you though, there are some days I really struggle, I want to lose weight, be skinnier and fitter, and change how I look but, I remind myself that changing the outside won’t change how I feel on the inside and if I am feeling a negative way about my body, there is something internal that I need to reflect on and I do.

This journey isn’t easy and there are many bumps in the road but, seeing as this week is National Eating Disorder Awareness week, I think it is important to reflect on where we started, where we are now, and how we cope when struggles arise in our recovery. I think for me, one of the biggest things I’ve been struggling with is just being my natural self. I love makeup and a good outfit because I feel empowered, confident, sexy, and just totally revolutionized whereas when I am wearing jeans and a sweatshirt with no makeup on – I definitely feel more self conscious and I’d like to work on that. So, I have decided not to wear makeup everyday and to start embracing my natural beauty. I think too, I’m not the best when it comes to skincare – I am very content with using a makeup wipe and hitting the pillow so, I think by doing this it’ll get me on a regular skin care regimen. Honest Beauty has free trials of their skincare products which range from dry to oily with balanced in between and it comes with a cleanser, moisturizer, and what they call a “beauty fluid” which has SPF 30 in it so, I have been trying that and I highly recommend it if you are looking for cruelty free and more natural skincare products. They feel very natural on my skin and I just ordered a full size bundle – if anyone would like an update on how my skin reacts to it in a month or so, just let me know!

It feels really good to be writing again, I’ve missed you guys! You all listen to my problems or successes and are always so supportive, thank you! So many things are happening that I just can’t believe that this is my life. I work full time and go to night school so, I’m a pretty busy person but, I’m finding a balance between work and play. Finding that special time for me and the people I love and this journey has just been so rewarding.

If you are dealing with an eating disorder and feel stuck – I just want you to know that there is a way out. That the light at the end of the tunnel will make itself known to you. You just need to trust that it will happen and it will. I know some days feel like they will never end – that the pain will never end but, it does. Talk to someone you feel comfortable with whether it be a significant other, family member, teacher, counselor, what have you – someone will be there to listen and help you towards your first steps of recovery because quite honestly, I believe that talking is the first step. Letting someone know what you are going through and opening yourself up is the hardest part in my opinion. You can even shoot me a message and I will be there to listen and give whatever advice that I can.

Thank you again to those of you who take the time to read my blogs, your support means the world to me.

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I was on a podcast!

Hello hello!

Those of you who follow me on my social media wanted me to write about how I was recently featured on Paige Smather’s podcast called “Nutrition Matters Podcast”. You can listen to the episode here and leave a comment below of what your thoughts were when listening to it! I would appreciate anyone who takes the time to tune in as it is about an hour and fifteen minutes.

In the podcast Paige and I discuss my journey through dieting, restriction, binging, self hate, and body dysmorphia over the course of ten years. We focus on the main points of my recovery and where I am at now mentally and physically. I am honored that I was able to share my story on a podcast that delivers such a healthy and loving message. Paige’s podcast surrounds itself around true nutrition, body acceptance, and Intuitive Eating which are three topics that I love! Paige is sweet, intelligent, and really easy to talk to (you can hear it in the episode!).

My long time readers know my struggle with the dieting cycle and binge eating. I have documented many of my attempts to lose weight through the various diets I have tried and although it is sad to read those old posts of mine, I am also proud to be where I am at now and I am even more proud to share a much more vibrant and positive message.

Thank you again to those who have supported me the past few years and to those who have taken the time to listen to the podcast.

In case the link above doesn’t work, here is the direct link to the podcast: http://www.nutritionmatterspodcast.com/jess-palmers-story-from-dieting-and-bingeing-to-self-love-and-authenticity/ 

Weight Watchers Week One

Well here we are!  As promised I am here with an update on how my first full week of being on the Weight Watcher’s Points Plus system has been.

All week I’ve been tracking my food and making sure I’m active at least four days a week so I can keep my allowance points for my getaway to the Cape this weekend and I’ve been staying on track for the most part. However, on Wednesday I was just sort of bummed out, really slumming around and fell off the wagon towards the end of the day but I got right back on track soon after and have been kicking butt again.

What do I think of system? It is simple and easy to follow, points in and points out.  It can be a bit nerve racking to have to keep track of everything and making sure you stay within your points but I’ve found that being active and getting those active points really gives you some wiggle room to snack or have a beer or two.

I won’t lie, I am going to keep track of what goes in and out this weekend but if I slip or have too many beers I’m not going to worry about it. I think that this plan can be a sustainable way of losing weight because you aren’t cutting out carbs or fat or only eating 1,000 calories a day.  Weight Watchers encourages you to eat good foods such as fruits and veggies because they have zero points (besides potatoes, corn, and a few others).

I feel good, I am sleeping better, and I am actually enjoying this process.  I tried on bathing suits the other day and could see the difference in my waist then what it was a month ago.  I’ve been making good strides in the health department and I am confident that joining Weight Watchers was a step in the right direction.

Jess goes gluten free: day 4

Hello readers,

Today is my fourth day on gluten free and since Monday I’ve lost three pounds! Yesterday was the holiday and yet again I stayed right on track and stuck with meat, potatoes, and vegetables. It feels good to clean my body out and to replenish it with good foods. I’ve noticed too that since going gluten free I am not eating as much junk, if any, and I’m consuming much more fruits and vegetables. This morning I meal planned after I ate breakfast (gluten free waffles!) by making a baby spinach salad with gluten free chicken tender strips, tortilla strips, and Annie’s lite Goddess dressing, along with a gluten free cookie because who doesn’t love cookies?

I’m still logging my food in my fitness pal because even gluten free junk food doesn’t mean they are freebies to just eat as many as I want. I still want to stay mindful because I still have goals that I want to reach. I’m hopeful to meet my goal of fitting into my size 4 jeans by March, possibly even hit my goal weight of 125lbs. But I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t truly care how much I weigh because at the gym I lift weights and am building muscle so, if I weigh 130-135lbs but am primarily muscle that is definitely okay with me. I miss wearing my size fours though, or at least feeling comfortable in my smaller clothes. For a long time I let myself pack on the pounds and became depressed because of it. I’m not a big person, I am about 5’1 maybe a little shorter, so being 155lbs is a lot on a little body such as mine. I’ve been here before too, I’ve let weight creep on me and then restricted and punished myself till I lost the weight again, but this time around it is much different.

Rather than being angry with myself I have accepted that life happens and the only thing that will make it change is if I work hard and reward myself along the way. So, when I lost my first five pounds I got my nails done, when I lose ten maybe I’ll get a pedicure or something. I’m doing this the healthy and positive way, I will not restrict myself (unless it has gluten obviously) and I will continue to persevere because no one is going to lose this weight for me. I am so motivated and confident in what my body can accomplish. Also, this time around I am much more educated on nutrition and fitness which I think is extremely beneficial because I know what I need to fuel my body to get a proper workout in and how to prevent injury in the gym.

I’m happy. Sure, I’m not always but when it comes to this particular aspect in my life I am truly happy and pleased with my progress thus far. Thank you to all of you who have been so supportive and commenting on my posts, it truly means so much. Happy Friday everyone!

Jess goes gluten free: day 1

So, I’ve decided to give this whole gluten free thing a try. The past year or so I’ve realized that I am constantly tired, my stomach has been acting up with everything that I eat, and as you all know my anxiety has just been beating me senseless lately. Having a gluten free diet is supposed to help the ailments that I have been experiencing, along with this strange rash and dry skin that I’ve been getting all over my body. I decided that I’m going to document my progress day by day to monitor how I am feeling emotionally, physically, and how I’m doing in terms of not eating pizza, bread, and chips. I’m definitely hitting the grocery store on my way home later to get some snacks and gluten free noms so I’m prepared to face this head on.

I guess I’m more worried about going out to eat and having to be that person who asks the server a million questions about their food and how it is prepared, I hate being that person. But, I guess you gotta do watcha gotta do right? I’m glad I have supportive people in my life though, my mom definitely number one she always has my back. My good friend Jesenia told me that if we went out to eat she would eat gluten free with me too so I wouldn’t have to look at all the delicious food I can’t eat which although I would NEVER let her do that, it is the thought that counts and I am so very grateful. I feel like with a good support team and staying on track of meal planning and what not I can definitely do this. I just need to remind myself of why I’m doing it in the first place. I literally would try anything to get a hold on my mental health and physical health again and I’m really hopeful that this will work.

Yoga and Bilbo Baggins

This time last year I was really getting into yoga, I was picking up on deals for unlimited yoga for thirty dollars or ten dollars for ten days of unlimited yoga but trying to fit as much yoga as I could into my busy schedule was hard but I fell in love, especially with restorative classes. Sure, hot yoga is great along with vinyasa flow, or any other yoga but restorative classes really helped my anxiety and body, I was hooked. Sadly, the cost of yoga is very expensive, one hundred dollars for a month of yoga is just too much for a college student or even five classes for seventy dollars is a lot so these deals are great, however, another sad aspect is that they are new student specials that you can only get once and I happened to fall in love with the studio near my house. I decided the other day that I was going to pay the fifteen dollars per class fee to take this awesome restorative class with this instructor that I thought was incredible, she was very helpful and kind and I knew that this was the studio I belonged in! Sure, I can’t afford to go everyday or even once a week for that matter but once or twice a month while doing yoga on my own at home while also meditating I feel will be very beneficial for my mental and physical health. 

I’ve been feeling so overwhelmed lately, like I can’t catch my breath or relax for more than five minutes and the last two mornings I’ve meditated with this app called, “Headspace” where for ten days and for ten minutes each day you meditate and are guided through a very relaxing session. I’ve been trying to better my life by limiting the “indulgences” so to speak to just weekends, and really focusing on my body and mind, realizing that my body is a temple that needs to be taken care of and respected, and yoga has always done that for me. It allows me to challenge myself and clear my mind of all the bullshit that gets stuck in there. I’ve just been reflecting on the past and I know I shouldn’t live there because it is not like I can change anything, I need to move on and realize that life has bigger and better plans for me, and it does, I know that and I just need to keep reminding myself that. I’m hopeful that by treating my mind and body better I’ll be able to move past it all and continue my life, “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.” Like Bilbo Baggins says in the LOTR, that is the perfect way to describe how I’ve been feeling everyone wants to get together or go here or there or talk and I just sort of want to lock myself in my room and tell everyone to leave me alone for a few days but I also know that will drive me just as nuts. I’m really a complicated person, I haven’t really realized that up until recently but I guess that is just who I am and I need to accept that too. 

Wandering, but not lost.

The last week or so I’ve been lazy. I haven’t really kept up with cleaning my room, I’ve been going to the gym thankfully but have been slacking with hitting my macros. I have to finish my registration for classes but now I’m second guessing my majors, once again. I read my horoscope the other day and it talked about how my worry of not knowing what to do with my life and not having a direction is a fear that I need to let go. But this is my future were talking about, this is my money, and someday family that revolves around the idea of where I will be in terms of my degrees and occupation. Many people I say this to laugh and say that no one knows what they want to do in life, but I disagree. I know plenty of people who know EXACTLY what they want to do whether it be being a doctor, teacher, dentist, or homeless person, at least they KNOW what they want in life. Me? I have no idea, I love art, photography, painting, writing, all of it, but what job can I get with that? Same with philosophy, I know they would be KILLER classes to take and learn about, but what job can I get from it? Even though I currently work for an awesome company and I have ZERO intentions of leaving it, I just can’t help but think, am I doing the right thing? But, I guess while I’ve been writing this post I’m realizing that life WILL figure itself out. These are two things I know fit well with me (art and philosophy) and I know that I can prosper in anything I do if I try and promote positivity. I hope that karma will return the goodness that I’ve put out, granted, I’m not a saint, nor am I always positive, but I always strive to be a good person and do what is best for myself and my loved ones but no one is perfect, I know I’m not. All I can do is try to stay true to my heart, and be honest with myself and others, always.