3 months after I quit the “diet-go-round”

I had no idea when I breathed a sigh of relief back in September that I would be led to this place. I smile at the thought. Some may believe that “this raw thang” is merely another diet, but I do not believe that for a moment. For me, it is the result of being freed from dieting. So, what’s different? Here’s a little “before” and “now” as a contrast, hopefully this will shed more light on why I came to this belief:

Before
I thought about my weight multiple times a day.
Now
I rarely think about it.

Before
I thought I would always be a slave to the scale (sometimes weighing multiple times a day).
Now
I rarely even think about the scale.

Before
I believed I had to restrict calories in order to lose weight.
Now
I eat when I’m hungry, I do not restrict calories, and I believe the weight will start falling off once my body heals from all the trauma I put it through during years of calorie restriction.

Before
I would become impatient with myself when the weight didn’t come off fast enough.
Now
It is far more important to me to heal, and to be whole, than to see a certain number on the scale.

Before
I associated fruits and vegetables with dieting (calorie restriction).
Now
I associate fruits and vegetables with feeling good and having more energy.

Before
I exercised excessively to reach a calorie burn, so I could have a calorie deficit, so I could lose or maintain weight.
Now
I exercise because it feels good and relieves stress, and to reach a personal, “non-scale” goal (training for a race, or for a black belt).

Before
I thought I would always feel deprived if I didn’t eat certain things.
Now
I know that by adding in things that are good for me, I’ve gradually (over the last year), and naturally pushed out, one by one, the things that aren’t good for me in favor of feeling better overall.

Before
I thought that having my ideal body was important enough to do almost anything to get it.
Now
I know I am fearfully and wonderfully made by God no matter what size I am.

Before
I believed that I had to work constantly to “lose” fat.
Now
I believe that with the right perspective, my body will naturally “release” the fat.

Before
I believed that if I stopped dieting I would be fat the rest of my life.
Now
I believe that just as God would not leave me burdened by sin that I’ve turned over, He will likewise not leave me burdened with weight.

Before
I was in bondage and subservient to the idol of weight-loss/body image.
Now
I am living free.

To truly accept grace and freedom isn’t to continually live in sin. Actually, those who fully grasp God’s grace tend to gravitate away from sinful behavior. No, they aren’t perfect, but their hearts are set more on “things above”, and that often dictates behavior in a different direction. Well, if it’s true where sin is concerned, wouldn’t it be true where things that have bound us are concerned too? Wouldn’t one in bondage to the wrong kinds of foods gravitate naturally toward foods that make them thrive when they are released? Yes, I believe it to be true because I’ve witnessed it.

When I stopped restricting calories and stopped feeling guilty over my cravings, I began to believe that I could choose anything I thought I wanted. I could choose to gorge on fries (which I did over and over, physically feeling yucky most times), or I could choose to eat a delicious green smoothie (and feel that amazing burst of energy). Yes, at the beginning of “no more dieting”, I ate a lot of stuff that was terrible for my body, and I could tell that I gained weight because I couldn’t put on my jeans any longer. Spending years devoted to “losing” weight had only resulted in me “finding” it again once I stopped fighting the uphill battle. As I posted out here, that was frustrating, and made me want to go back to dieting. I continued to allow freedom to wash over me instead. I decided to believe that my body would naturally “release” the weight when it was ready. When you release something, you set it free. When you have a sense of “losing” something, you (or your body in this case) sets out to find it again. I knew I didn’t want that in this area of my life.

Here we are, more than three months after finally letting go, and I’m choosing to eat the very foods that God designed my body to desire. I believe with all my heart that I could choose to start eating french fries again right now. I am free to make that choice. My desire is for something else though.

Truthfully, this wasn’t just a three month journey to this place. It’s been years in the making. Years of various diets. Years of letting go of one thing only to cling to another. Years of stuffing down emotions. Years of God patiently guiding me to a place where I was able to see what “Victory in Jesus” really looks like. It’s rather funny because I was always an “all or nothing” dieter before, and yet God chose the gradual approach to bring me to the place where I would lay down dieting at His feet. This is why I said I wasn’t emotionally and spiritually ready to eat this way for the long-term last year. He allowed me a glimpse into what I could have, but then my “Before” beliefs crowded it out and I returned to what I understood, dieting. I needed to give it over, to really let it go and not pick it back up again. I needed to Trust. I do believe I’ve reached that place, but I am also aware that the pit I used to reside in is just one slip away. This is where reliance on Him is crucial.

That’s where I am in this “no dieting” adventure. It’s actually become about so much more than saying “no” to dieting and the scale. It’s become about abundant Life, Trust, Joy, and Truth. If you’re interested in trying a gradual approach to better health, consider joining The Journey.

“In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” ~ Proverbs 3:6

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One thought on “3 months after I quit the “diet-go-round”

  1. Pingback: Are you starving? | Brick by Brick

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