I will be the first person to tell you I’m a repeat victim to the stress and overeating cycle. As a sweet tooth, this also means I head for high carb meals or sweets. At the time of my indulgent massacre of the cupboards, I’m telling myself messages like – “It’s OK Jessica. You train hard each day. You deserve it.” I’ve become an absolute master of tricking myself into believing it’s ok and not harming to the body going on these binges. Truth is, this is a really unhealthy way of living and eating. Not only because of the physical consequences of cramps, bloating and lack of energy (that shit will strip you of energy when the initial high wears off), but then there is the mental anguish too. The guilt that follows when you realize, “Crap! I gave into those stupid voices in my head again! Grrr!”
My kryptonite is muesli. I LOVE MUESLI! Whilst I refrain from buying the toasted muesli (amazing stuff!), I still get excited with each and every bowl of muesli. I could inhale the stuff. When I’m stressed, this is the first thing I look for in my cupboards. Then after devouring half the bag, the regret sets in and the cycle of guilt, followed by more emotional eating – because it’s like, “well I’ve stuffed it up (healthy eating for the day) now. I may as well punish myself some more and eat more crap…” I know everyone reading this can relate to these sorts of stories in some form or another. We’ve all been there.
What I’ve found with yoga is my ability to feel more connected to my body. So whilst I may go on a binge every now and again, I’ve found over the years these have become less and less and less because I can now feel my body’s response to eating crappy foods. I notice the physical and emotional changes within, which encourages me to make more conscious choices about what I ingest and what I avoid. Granted, there are still those days when I hand over complete control to my sabotaging inner voice and divulge the contents of the cupboard. But more often than not, I wouldn’t allow this to happen because I know the end result will not be pretty.
It’s important to remember yoga is not just something we do on the mat. The journey to inner peace, deepening our self-awareness and control of the mind is both on an off the mat. The postures are our training so that when we step into life, we can apply what we’ve learned to everything we do, and that absolutely includes our eating habits.
If you too can relate to my experiences with binge eating, I would love to hear your story. Together we can help others to realize they’re not alone and we’re all working hard to make better, more conscious decisions for our health.
Sending huge hugs,