Tuesday, June 28, 2011

All I Can Say Is Eh Eh

I've really been feeling Lady Gaga's "Nothing Else I Can Say" recently, hence my title. My life hasn't been bad, or really amazing lately. Just...eh. Not that that's bad, I just wish I was more positive.

After my recent vlog honesty about my struggles, my body image has actually been on the upswing, which is always a good thing. My bad thoughts about my body come and go in waves, so while it's great that I'm feeling better, I know it won't last. I'm determined to try to fight back this time, though, when the crappy feelings set in again. In fact, they already started to today. For the past few days, I think I actually saw the real 'me' in the mirror. It was refreshing, and I honestly thought to myself "Wow, my legs actually are tiny!" I never thought those words would come out of my mouth. However, all that changed yesterday after I weighed myself. It wasn't some huge, scary number by any means but still frustrating. (*P.S. I don't mean for the numbers to be triggering at all! I have used them before in posts, but if they do offend you, then please skip this part!) I know this will sound sooooo stupid, but I want to weigh 90 lbs so bad. Right now (and for the past few months), I've been hovering 1 or 2 lbs above that and it makes me mad. Mad that no matter what I do, I can't lose those stubborn couple of pounds. I think the real reason I want to weigh 90 lbs is because my original recovery goal weight was 90 lbs and I feel 'fat' if I go above that. Stupid, I know, especially since I'm only a pound over and still technically underweight. I just don't look that underweight in my eyes.

I've also been struggling with an exercise compulsion. I hesitate to call it 'overexercise' because ED still tells me I'm not doing enough, but since summer vacation started a month and a half ago, I haven't gone a day without exercising at least 40 minutes. There were a couple days where I did only 30 or 35 minutes, but there were way more that I did over an hour. In ED's opinion, it's nothing since it's only been 20 minutes cardio, 20 minutes yoga and walking around stores or something most days. But I think that refusing to go even one day without 40 minutes of working out is an exercise addiction. I've even been logging my exercise! And on top of that, I've been hiding the evidence of working out. I mostly do stuff in my room, or I go for a walk by myself or something. And I also think I pulled a muscle in my left calf when I was playing tennis this weekend because I didn't stretch and I overexerted it.

I just feel like I'm going from one behavior to another, from restriction to exercising. I haven't restricted majorly in awhile, since I'm at home and my parents are watching what I'm eating, so now I feel like I have to turn to exercise to control my emotions and my weight. I did the same thing last summer, but I didn't have to work out every day and it was usually for much less time. Exercise never used to be a part of my anorexia, but now I feel like it's taking over my life. I'm not devoting all my time to it, but my thoughts are centered around when I'm going to workout next and how intense it should be. I enjoy exercise, don't get me wrong, but I feel like I'm too obsessed with it and now it's not fun. I feel like I can't think about anything other than planning my meals and exercising. I'm happy for the most part, I just wish I could stop obsessing over these two things and just enjoy my summer guilt-free.

Sorry about this lame downer of a post. I just feel like I haven't really updated in awhile and I didn't want to make my life seem like it was all sunshine and rainbows (like in my Fave Five Friday posts). Not every day is good, but that doesn't mean I'm giving in.

Don't worry, I'm still smiling :)

Any more advice on the body image thing? Have you struggled with abusing exercise and how do you overcome it?


  1. I can be the same way about exercising. Honestly, it's really easy to hide an ED when you're a runner, which I am. I mean, most runners are fairly thin and when people think you're thin and you're a runner, they figure it's because you work and train so hard, etc. Plus, with training and running it's pretty easy to hide any compulsive exercise and disguise it as training. Exercise is a healthy behavior- our society looks positively on it, unlike other ED behaviors (binging, purging, restriction, etc) which are taboo, gross, etc.

    But, no one is making you exercise, it's the ED voice. You don't have a coach down your back, you're not on a college scholarship, you're not a professional athlete getting paid... so if it's not fun, or you don't want to, DON'T. You have your whole life to work out, missing a few days won't be so bad.

    It hasn't been easy for me lately either =(. It's an everyday struggle, and I know even if I do recover someday, I'll probably still deal with it in some capacity forever, unfortunately.


  2. Hey, doll. You are still TINY, trust me. I know everybody is different, but I'm 4'11 and I weigh quite a bit over 90 and I still am very thin. We're woman - we are supposed to have a little "protection" ;)

    Unfortunately, I still struggle with exercise. I don't over-exercise by any means, but I feel guilty when I don't do any. But, I've been trying to completely not exercise at least one day a week to prove to myself that it won't kill me or even cause me to gain weight. And it doesn't!
    ED lies again! lol

    Don't give up, Ash. You are a wonderful young woman! :)

  3. I totally hear you on the exercise compulsion. Last summer exercise compulsion was a very big part of my eating disorder, so I can empathize with how consuming it is!!! I wish I had good advice for you on how I stopped over-exercising/compulsively exercising/whatever you want to call it, but I am still struggling to find a balance between over-exercising and just avoiding exercise altogether. Something that has helped me, though, is not doing machines that tell me the amount of calories I'm burning. Also, it helps me to exercise with other people so it feels like more of a social activity rather than a calorie-burning activity. Like, I go to a park with my dog and a friend and walk around- it's good for my body, but since I'm distracted and enjoying the moment, I'm not thinking of it as a calorie-burning activity.

    Could you maybe challenge yourself to go a day without exercising for 40 minutes and see if you can tolerate it (even just decreasing the amount of time by 10 min or so)? That might make it easier to break the compulsion and prove to yourself that skipping 1 day of exercise doesn't impact your weight.

    I also hear you on the body image stuff! It's so hard, but I'm glad you had a few days where you saw your body clearly! That sounds like major progress to me!

    About the wanting to be exactly 90 pounds- keep in mind that you started recovery from your ED when you were 16- it's pretty normal for people to gain a bit of weight from 16-18, even if one's weight stays the same, since you go from being a teenager to an adult. So although 90 was your original recovery goal, it's totally normal (and does not make you fat, no matter what ED tells you!) to weight a bit more than that 2 years later.

    I'm thinking of you, Ash! Let me know if you want any support outside of blogging, I've got your back! That picture of you is absolutely gorgeous by the way- you're beautiful on the inside and out and don't let stupid ED tell you otherwise. <3

  4. i know this is hard and i know how u feel.. its a tough cycle but eventually u will FIND peace and balance.. as for the weight thing.t he SAME thing happened to me after i gained the weight back when i was recovering.. i gained about 2-3 pounds more tan my goal weight without ddoing anything drastic to get there... i think it was just my body adjusting to my new healthy weight and kicking itself back into gear!

  5. Aw, I'm so sorry that you are struggling with this. It's hard. Exercise was never a problem for me, but I feel like the way in which you're "slipping" with exercise is how I'm slipping with eating. I know how much it sucks to do so well and have this crap slowly creep back in. As much as you know it's wrong, you can't stop. When I first stopped measuring my food, this is what I told myself, "Ok, you're just going to stop measuring for tomorrow. Tomorrow, you cannot measure a single thing. Then, if you want to measure food the day after, go right ahead. It's only for tomorrow." So I made it through the one day, and the day after, I'd discovered that I actually didn't want to measure anymore. Maybe you could try that? Force yourself to NOT exercise, only for one day. If you still want to the next day, then go ahead. And if you don't, then don't!


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