Intuitively Eating Ice Cream But Knowing When to Stop

Last week I discussed guilt. How do we create guilt? By creating rules. If we break the rules, we feel guilty. What if I told you that you could work on loosing the reins a little where you no longer are clouded with the cyclical guilt and self sabotage. I’m gonna tell you that, gonna to tell you that right now. The first thing that you have to do is develop self trust.

I’m talking breaking free of the tight chokehold your calorie counting apps have on you. I’m talking listening to the hunger signals of your body. I’m talking Intuitive Eating.

Does counting macros consistently make you anxious? Is this your plan for the rest of your life? After talking to several people the response has been more commonly, “I hope not.”.

My Fitness Pal ruled my life during prep, on a caloric deficit food was always on my mind. In Off Season or “Life Season” I like to call itthe last thing I want to do is plug in my tablespoon of Reduced Sugar Ketchup and lose that 1g of carbs for the day. I don’t want to be hungry and grumpy. I don’t want to turn down social events because I’m not sure if I can fit the food or drinks into my macros. I don’t want macro counting to be my life.  

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Flexible dieting, counting macros is an amazing tool for fat loss, gauging portion control, and learning the nutrients in the foods you are eating. All Hail Macro Counting, Seriously. It saved me from a terrible low calorie, restricting “diet” and taught me the ways that I could eat healthy foods but still change my physique to reach my goals which were fat loss and lean muscle building.  I was enjoying all types of foods in moderation, working on a reverse diet, and building lots of muscle in a caloric surplus to eventually shed it off and compete, which I did.

All sounds well and good right? Yeah, until the “flexible” approach to counting every morsel of my food changed the way I ate. I wasn’t eating food anymore I was eating numbers. I wasn’t eating because I was hungry (Ok… always hungry, but you know what I mean) I was eating because it was time to eat and I had numbers to reach.

It is natural for you to eat more on some days and less on others.

I’ve begun to eat because I’m hungry and stop because I’m full. Not everyone can see the line clearly between intuitive eating as eating to fuel your body or intuitively eating as an excuse to eat a carton of ice cream in bed every night and this is a very valid concern, I understand.

Intuitive Eating isn’t about eating whatever you want. It’s about letting go of the rules you have been confined to about eating. It’s about creating a healthy relationship with your body and your relationship with food. It is in fact a work in progress but if you trust yourself to get in tune with your body, your life will change.

Who is intuitive eating for?

Off season. For me, Elle this is MY purpose. As most of you know, and if you don’t follow me on Instagram where I document this journey @elle_bfitbody I recently got started in competing in NPC Bikini Competitions. You can find my reasons for competing here.  Since I am taking a break from competing until 2015 I found that now was my time for balance.

Weight maintenance, someone who is comfortable with themselves in their current physique with no outstanding goals to change their appearance drastically. I love this. Work with what you’ve got. Live life. Embrace your body now.

Who is intuitive eating not for?

People in contest prep. This is a no brainer. I’m sure there are exceptions somewhere, and you my friend are a lucky one.

People with fat loss/weight loss goals or those who are in an intensive building stage who intuitively do not eat enough.

Now it’s time to let go. If only for one day to try it out. If you are considering IE, cut yourself some slack as you begin. Start by really tasting your food, put your phone down while you eat, shut off the TV, slow it down. Take a deep breath. Trust yourself.

No Food Guilt, No Problem

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