Feeling crappy in head and body has prompted Janine Rudin to make some changes in her life – and make the kinds of promises to herself that are keepers. This week, she’s finding it hard to accentuate the positive.
I think it’s fair to say that my frame of mind is not that positive at the moment: my head is in a thick cloud of negativity, taking everything personally and feeling a bit overwhelmed. It won’t last and soon I will snap out of it.
Usually when I am like this, I wallow. I can feel sorry for myself and I reinforce it by taking to the duvet, by eating rubbish to make me feel better and not having the energy to move, which in turn makes me feel worse because I then berate myself for being a lazy, fat slob.
This time is so different. I knew having a low period would be a test to my new healthier outlook and I feel like I have achieved an A*.
I haven’t dived into the Christmas chocolates (mainly because I purposely haven’t bought any yet) and I haven’t binged on cheese on toast and other comforting crap. Neither have I ditched my 10,000 steps.
I can’t stress how much of a change this is. My default is becoming healthier choices and after a lifetime of stuffing my face when I feel low, I feel like I have more self-worth.
Changing my bad habits was about being healthier, losing some weight along the way and getting a bit fitter. I never imagined that breaking these habits would contribute to such positive emotions and a different way of thinking about myself. And I need to remind myself of that when I feel like I have such a long way to go with losing the fat, because I have achieved more than I ever dreamed.
From a fat lass perspective, I am still fat but less so than a few months ago. I’m 19 inches and one or two dress sizes down. I have more body confidence and I feel stronger and healthier.
The key changes have been about being more mindful about what I eat. I won’t be whizzing up kale smoothies any time soon – although I have surprised myself by eating quinoa, so who knows? – but I am more conscious of what I eat and drink and how my emotions can affect this.
How I think about food has completely changed. In a few short months it has gone from being my enemy to my good companion, providing me with the fuel I need for my body and my brain to work well. I still adore chocolate and crisps but I make better choices, which no longer seem linked to my emotions.
It has become normal now to think about food before I eat it: do I need it? is there an alternative? Can I wait? Why do I want to eat it? Do I need a drink? Am I bored?
I used to just eat what I wanted, but I feel like I have trained my body to not need the sugar and the carbs I used to eat.
So I’m not eating after about 7-8pm; I’m eating breakfast; I stop eating when I am full and I no longer feel like I am eating for the sake of it. I’m choosing to reach for fruit and I make a mean salad – I never thought it possible to feel full and satisfied from eating a salad.
When I have made attempts at a healthier lifestyle before it has been focused on being less lardy. The main differences I am seeing this time are:
• Less bloat and less fat
• I have more energy and, despite this current blip, my mood is more balanced, especially around my period
• I am more confident and I have a greater feeling of wellbeing.
And I have started to get a lot of comments about how well I look. Such simple changes but I think I might be winning this time!
Read the previous instalments of Janine’s diary here.
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Antenatal teacher, postnatal group leader, birth & baby specialist, writer, mother, wife, friend, me. My time is spent with my family, working with parents and trying not to eat all the biscuits. @BirthandBabyCo