I’m totally finished with exercise. In the course of the last fifteen years I have changed from a couch potato girl to somebody who has to move at least three times a week in order not to get really cranky.
In the beginning I hated every single minute of it. Later I liked the feeling of power, strength, and muscle-tone. When I was pregnant and a friend told me to be glad that I didn’t need to exercise anymore, I just could stare at her. I wasn’t even allowed to to my regular walking routine! Much less dancing or strength training. Now, as a mother, I have switched to walking and yoga. My regular walking routine consists of putting my three-year-old into the stroller and pushing him through the neighborhood for 35 minutes. When I have a babysitter I’m turning into one of those ridiculous nordic walkers.
Yoga, I’m doing in front of my computer with a dvd, while my son clings to my leg, not knowing whether he wants join me or not. Mostly he wants both at the same time, throwing a fit while I’m trying to follow the soothing voice of the yogi on screen, and to breathe in and out in synch with the people on dvd.
So, working out is something I’m capable of doing. Even in not quite ideal circumstances.
But back to my subject: diet. I’m a big fan of the anti-diet-movement. My heroines are Debra Waterhouse, Susan Powter (with growing reservation), most of all (without reservation whatsoever) Geneen Roth. Geneen Roth’s books have helped me tremendously in unearthing the cause of my eating disorder. I kept journals, did the homework, and wrote down what I ate when, and how I felt, for weeks.
For most people that act of writing it down is enough to change their eating habits. They find having to write: “I ate two bags of potato chips, because I was bored.” so embarassing that they stop eating the chips. Not so easy for me. My eating journal contained things like:
2 pm: ate two plates of spaghetti bolognese, salad, had three glasses of wine. afterwards half a bag of jelly beans for dessert. feeling good, a little stuffed. food was delicious, felt satisfied before the jelly beans but wanted something sweet.
3.30 pm: one bag of potato chips, still stuffed from lunch but bored. procrastinated folding laundry
So I already knew when I ate more than I needed. And why. But that didn’t stop me from eating all that junk anyway.
Some time in the fall of 2004 I had enough of me whining the hole day:
“My God, look at my stomach, how fat I am!”
“I know, I shouldn’t be eating this, oh, only one bite, and another, and another, tomorrow I’ll eat no sweets at all, oops, all gone!”
“What, dinner time already, I’m still stuffed, but I have to eat real food once in a while…”
Ad infinitum, ad nauseam.
I woke up, and asked myself: “Is my weight, food, and the way I look really the single most important thing in the world?” “Why do I spend every waking moment thinking about it, instead of being glad about my marvellous family, and spending my energy on my
(to be continued)