Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

I am a generally happy girl who loves running, going to the gym and eating food!! Though my life has been very different.
I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia & purging tendencies & over exercising. I was depressed and self harmed. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
After alot of struggles, lots of ups and downs, suicide attempts, tears, anxiety, panic and never thinking i would be healthy.
I am now declared healthy from anorexia nervosia.

I have been blogging for 4 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I am happy and healthy and living my life. Going to school, meeting friends and trying to find myself in this world.

I write about my daily life, but also try to write posts about how it was when i was sick, advice and tips.
I am open and friendly, so dont be scared about writing a post or sending me an email at: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Body love and acceptance





Less focus on food

During recovery you need to take the focus away from food and your obsessions. You can spend your whole time thinking about food, calories, comparison with food, what you can or cant eat, good food or bad food etc etc but those types of thoughts you need to get rid of. Because food should be a part of your life like anything else in your life, it shouldnt take up all your thoughts and time.
   When i was sick i spent alot of time looking at recipes, collecting recipes, watching food shows, watching what others ate, wondering around food stores, looking at food online and their nutritional values, looking at calorie counters, thinking about the food i wanted to eat, i did alot of baking and made food for others, but never allowed myself to eat any of it. All of it was a sign of obsession with food... that was where my thoughts where, but during recovery you need to take your obsession away from food. Focus it on other things, on your hobbies and things you enjoy. You should eat food because you are hungry and you know you need it, somedays you need to eat even if you arent hungry just because you know you need it and otherwise you would eat too little which isnt good. Somedays there are more thoughts and planning going into food, that doesnt have to be a bad thing i mean there are people who cook food for a whole week because they are so busy otherwise, then there are some people who follow meal plans for most of their life and that works for them. That doesnt have to be wrong but in recovery when your obsession with food is at its worst then you need to break those thoughts.




And when thinking about it, my blog might not be the best help for that. Because YES, I KNOW there are food pictures, there is talking about food etc but i am now going to try to cut back on that as best i can. There will still be food pictures and sometimes random talking about food, because it is a part of my life. But no, the focus shouldnt be there. Its mostly for a lack of words or nothing better to write, but then in all honesty its better to just not write at all. So i am going to cut back on posting my snacks and meals and that, as that might not be necessary here anyway. I eat for myself, what i am craving.... i dont need to mention that i ate chocolate or that i just ate a fruit salad etc Of course if i want, to i will.... but in general, i will try to post more about other things. To try to take away the focus on food, instead focus on other things. Positivity, happiness, recovery, health, different hobbies, coping mechanisms etc
    I might even cut back more on personal posts, instead just focus on recovery posts.... or i dont know really. But some things have happened which make me feel a little apprehensive about writing about my personal life, i dont know how much to share... i want to write about my days, what i do etc but then i think does anyone even care about that, hahah!!
  So i'll see, maybe there will just be like 2 recovery posts a day instead of 5 different, random posts a day!

Hopefully you will appreciate the less focus on food here on my blog and hopefully it will help you :)

And i plan on writing a post about how to focus less on food :)


March 1st

Hello!!!
   Its March the 1st already - CRAZY! Or is it just me? Its kind of nice that it's March though, it means that it's closer to summer and now its only about 4 months left of school, that isnt so much!! hahaha Though im sure its going to feel like forever but at the same time fly by!!
    This past week i have been on my break - if you havent already noticed that, hahah!! And its gone so quickly, but its been really good! Ive done so much, hahah XD It feels like i havent had alot of quiet moments... or quiet moments to myself anyway. Ive spent alot of resting and relaxing time with A.....
  Its strange how i can go from spending so much time on my own and loving it (Because yes, i do enjoy spending time on my own and just being alone!!) to suddenly spending so much time with someone else and feeling so comfortable like that. Infact we're in that stage of the relationship where we can just sit quietly beside each other and both scroll through our phones, haha. Now that might not sound so good, but you know sometimes you just want to scroll through your different social media sites and its nice that we can just sit quietly and its not awkward, it just feels nice :)
    Ive spent most of the 10 days break at A's and its been nice, so its going to feel weird to be back to my own apartment and back at home again! Its back to routines tomorrow, back to school, stress, routines etc Im not sure if i am excited for it or not... I like having freedom and deciding what i do during the days, going for runs in the morning or going to the gym at 10/11 and not at 7/8am... though i do admit i love my 7/8am morning workouts :) So im not complaining about that, infact my schedule this term allows for morning workouts which i love and it gives me so much energy for the rest of the day :) But i wasnt planning on writing about exercise here, but it seems to creep into the posts anyway :)

I thought i would write a little about yesterday evening where i ate dinner at A's parents place and i was a complete mess, haha. I think i dropped 3 knives, i dropped so much food and got food on my skirt and top, hhaha. It was super embarrassing, i felt a bit like a 5 year old trying to eat! Though luckily his parents seem to like me anyway and now they know the true me.... Because i cant eat fancy at all, take me to a fancy restaurant and there is a 99% chance that i will do something embarrassing, haha!!! For most of the dinner my cheeks felt bright red as i was so embarrassed, but they mostly laughed and just thought i was a little ditsy, haha!
   It can be embarrassing when things like that happen, but at the end of the day we're all just humans. We all mess up at times and its better to just laugh about it, hahaha!!! 

Have any of you had any embarrassing stories similar to mine (or worse :)) which you want to share? :)

For now, i need to spend the next hour or two studying and then i will see how i spend the rest of my Sunday!




Answers part 1

How would you define healthy? How do you know when you are healthy?
I would define healthy as mental and physical health. With balance and happiness in your life. Where you can live and enjoy life, you can cope with the ups and downs. Life isnt always easy, there are ups and downs, time when you feel stressed, anxious or guilty over things. But you can cope with those feelings in a positive way, you dont just break down as soon as something bad happens. You can live and enjoy life, that is healthy to me. But also having a healthy mindset, a positive mind set as well as a healthy body. You eat healthy and balanced, you get some activity in during your week and you try to get all your vitamins and minerals in as well as drinking enough water and getting enough sleep, that is all part of being healthy.
   
How do you know when you are healthy? Trust me, you will know. There is a BIG difference between not healthy and healthy.... Healthy is not a body size, but it is your mental thoughts as well as your physical, inner health. When your body and mind is healthy, when you can cope with all feelings, you feel positive and happy, you have energy and dont feel obsessed, addicted or compelled to certain things then you will feel the freedom of true health. Not restricted health, but actual mental and physical health where the two are combined and work together :)


What is A's job? 
I would prefer to not answer this :) But he works hard, 10-11 hours 4-6 days a week.

Where would you like to work as a 'summer' job(just to earn money, but not as a permanent job)? :) 
Ive been looking to apply to different gyms to either work as an instructor or just at the reception :) Otherwise ive been thinking about getting in contact with different companies and then working for them and doing different demos and such or even just working in a food store :) But im not so sure really!

does anyone else in your family like running? 
My sister does run a bit :) And my step dad used to run alot before as well but the past 1-2 years he has been so busy with work and has had different injuries so hasnt been able to run so much :(

what does your sister study? 
International politics... i think, hahah 

is there an animal you don't like? 
Hmmm, i find cows very creepy, so dont like them so much. And then things like sloths arent the most loveable animals, haha.


what is your favorite color? 
I like hot pink and black :)

favorite song? 
At the moment my favourite songs are:
We are the heart - EXGF
Causal affair - Panic! at the disco

If you could have a superpower, what would it be? 
I think invisibility would be kind of cool to have! Then if i wanted to be alone or just disappear for a while, then i could do that :) But being able to just have whatever i wanted when i wanted it would be kind of cool as well... though thats a bit materialistic!!

did you watch the Oscars?

I havent actually.... though i want to - sort of. But i think i might try to watch the highlights when i get a chance :)

Get to know me A-Z

A. Attached or Single? If you've been reading my blog recently then you know that im in a happy relationship at the moment :);)
B. Best Friend? Hmmmm, this question is so hard to answer because i dont really know. I guess i would say my best friend in Ireland, though we dont have so much contact recently because we're both so busy.
C. Cake or Pie? I would definitely say cake... all types of cake (apart from ones with meringue or marzipan!). But cream, chocolate, fruit etc cakes, all so delicious. Im not so much for pies really, though i do admit a slice of apple pie can be delicious at times!!








D. Day of Choice? I would say Friday or Saturday, there is something about Friday evenings which i love but then the freedom of Saturdays!!!
E. Essential Item? My phone.... I am quite addicted to it. When i am with friends or family i can put my phone away, but when im on my own, well then i need it for music, internet, reply to emails, write posts, my school documents, message/call etc ;)
F. Favourite Colour? Baby blue or hot pink!!
G. Gummy Bears or Worms? Hmmm im not so much into gummy or jelly things, but i would say gummy bears!
H. Home town? Out in the West or Ireland!
I. Indulgence? Hmmm, i dont really know if i call food an indulgence? Food is food, everything in moderation. But indulgence or guilty pleasure? Making myself a SUPER HUGE meal like oatmeal with berries, nuts and raisins. 1-3 fried eggs, chocolate on the side and also some bread or pancakes etc and bringing it to my room and watching a series and just eating it all!! hahaha XD I love big meals!
J. January or July? Definitely July... im sorry but i absaloutly detest winter especially in Sweden. Its cold, grey, snowy and  not at all nice. I am a summer person 150%
K. Kids? I dont know, i guess so. Though its not really something i think about now... there was  a time where having my own children was so far off my life plan and what i wanted in the future that there was more chance i would travel to Mars than have my own children, but now i dont know. Im that age where i am so focused on other things that marriage, children, settling down... thats not really my main focus.
L. Life is not complete without…? Food and love.... love whether its friends, family, pet!!
M. Memory you cherish? Going to Disneyland. Despite it being awful weather for the 3 days we were there i just loved it so much. The breakfast buffet, the V.I.P ticket so that my whole family and I could skip ALL queues. I felt free, i felt happy and it was like a reward for all my hard work the past years.
  Another memory i cherish lots has to be the colour run and midnight run! They were so awesome!
N. Numbers of brothers/sisters? One full older sister, a younger half brother & 2 older step brothers... and in the future i might have another younger step sister -_-'
O. Oranges or Apples? This is so hard to choose... because i love green apples but oranges are just so juicy and delicious!!!
P. Pet Peeves? People who walk into me, seriously one day i will hit someone when they do this to me XD Rude people and people who skip queues..... its like Chill, you will get on the bus or pay for your items.
Q. Quotes?
Life does not get better by chance but by change.
R. Reasons to smile? SO MANY!! Friends, family, boyfriend, music, running, working out, food, my dog, happiness, tv shows, films, books etc etc
S. Season of choice? Summer!!! I wish i lived in a much warmer country :)
T. Tea or Coffee? This choice is impossible for me to make, like sometimes i make both coffee and tea because i want them both!!!
U. Unknown fact about me? I look and behave very differntly when im alone than when im with other people.... seriously, i look and behave like a homeless person when im on my own but when im with other people its like 'sort of nice hair, sort of nice clothes, sort of nice make up (?) and mostly acceptable behaviour!' hahaha (Wow, that wasnt the most boosting sentence about me, but really... im quite a laid back person and my appearance isnt the first thing i think about!)
V. Vegetable? Brocolli, sallad, paprika, asparagus, cauliflower, peas I love them all!!!
W. Worst habit? Biting my nails and my knuckles :( But slowly im stopping with the help of A!!!
X. X-Ray or Ultra-sound? Neither... ive had way too many in my life time im actually a little worried about getting some type of long term radiation affects because of all the x rays, CT scans, full body x rays ive had in my life time.
Y. Your favourite trip? To NY or Disneyland Paris!!!
Z. Zodiac sign? Sagittarius 

Travelling when struggling with an eating disorder (&masterpost)

hi izzy,
do you like travelling? how do you manage your meal plan when you are on 
holidays?
i have always loved travelling - but now, in recovery, my daily routine and 
meals cooked by myself make me feel safe and comfortable. when i think of 
travelling, it makes me feel uncomfortable because i won't have control 
about the ingredients, amounts and times of my meals.

ps: thanks for your blog, it's very helpful and motivating :)


Hello and thank you!
  To begin with i love travelling, it used to give me alot of anxiety for many different reasons but now i love it, even if i can get some home longing after a few days. But now its exciting to see new things, make new memories, take lots of photos and trying the new food is also a bonus!!!
  I am recovered and healthy so i dont follow a meal plan, i just listen to my body and eat what my body needs which is usually 6 meals per day. When i travel i eat very differently from how i do at home because i dont have as much access to food as well as it being different food and eating out for most meals. But i always pack with me bars such as questbars and big bags of nuts to have with me so that i can have those as snacks and then wherever we are staying i always buy even more snacks in the country that we are in so that i can get the right amount of energy i need.
When it comes to main meals i eat whatever i am served if we are staying at someones place and if we are staying in a hotel then we often eat lunch and dinner out in cafes or restaurants and then i order what it is i am craving/wanting right then.
  When you are on holiday you dont need to worry about eating out, most people do that 2-3 times per day while they are on holiday. Instead of worrying about it and worrying about the calories or portions etc think that its just normal food. Its energy which fuels your body and gives you energy to live.
  
When you are on holiday you dont have your routines or habits and you dont get to control food or eat the same thing or same time as when you are at home, but that is a good thing. It helps you move away from your control and obsession and learn to let others make food for you. TO make you realise its ok to eat different things at different times, you dont have to control food. 
   You dont need to restrict when you are on holiday, in general when you are on vacation you do quite alot during the days as well as maybe not eating so often as you would when you are at home. So i know that for alot of people in recovery they get scared thinking they will gain weight when they are on holiday and so eat less and then they come home and have lost weight even though they think they ate loads. For me when i go on holiday even though i try to eat as much as possible and always eat snacks i can end up losing weight because you dont get the same amount of energy into you because you might not be able to eat as soon as you are hungry.

With travelling it can make you uncomfortable but its good to step outside of your comfort zone. To face your fears and give up your control. Because you cant control your food and only eat food prepared by you for the rest of your life, that would be a very restricted life. Instead you need to push past those fears, maybe begin with taking a weekend away somewhere where you then eat out 2 times per day as well as packing with you or buying snacks to eat as those are important.

I have some posts which can help you with travelling and facing fear foods:

How to cope on holiday
Facing fears and restrictions
Panic when eating
Facing fear foods
You cant progress living with the same routines
You are confined by the walls you build yourself
Anxiety while food shopping
Eating at different times

Dog watching and spa day

Hello :)
 
I thought i would do a little update :) Today i have been a dog watcher with A for his parents dog. We drove to their house and then went for a short walk in the forest with the dog, ate fruit salad for a snack (or i ate that anyway, he ate nutella sandwiches!) and then we have had a bit of a spa day as his parents have a sauna and a jacuzzi in their house!! I must say it was relaxing by 150%!!! Super nice to just sit in the sauna and then the jacuzzi!! After 4 hours we were both looking like raisins and now we're waiting for his parents to come back before we begin making dinner :)







Its been a super relaxing day though i must admit some mental anxiety and stress is beginning to creep in because i have so much work that i havent done this break at all and on Monday it all begins again and im just wondering how i will have time for everything :( But instead of worrying about it now i need to just let go of that stress, remind myself that there is no point trying to begin editing an essay now, hahaha. Instead enjoy my break and relaxing day!!
  I must admit it helps to write out my thoughts and my stress/anxiety, helps me to think more rationally :)
  Instead tomorrow i am going to make sure to get some work done!!!

How is everyone spending their Saturday? :)


Chaotic yesterday followed by a cosy evening

Good morning Saturday!!
   How is everyone doing today? :)

Yesterday was a bit of a chaotic day. It started off in a good way, breakfast followed by some chocolate because that was what i was craving and Japp Marabou is just soo good in my own opinion!! I had then decided to do some boxing with my sister however when i was going to take the tram i realised it wasnt going and instead i had to take a bus, so i wandered around trying to find that then had to wait and then get off and take another bus which went in the wrong direction before it turned around and went back the right direction, then i had to get off that bus to take another tram and then get off at a station and walk a distance to get to the gym and in total it took about 2 hours, when normally that distance would have taken about 40 minutes. Crazy!!! I got to the gym and had lots of irritation and anger and LOTS of energy. So we worked hard and it felt super awesome :) A guy working at the gym (its not my gym its my sisters) seemed interested in the boxing and was curious whether i was a trainer/PT or not..... so that was kind of fun to hear. Just some more training and confidence and maybe i might start seeking jobs at a gym or teaching Aerobox to others/groups :)



Then i picked up a package, headed home, ate everything in site, lay in my bed which felt super good. It was nice to spend a little time at home and just be around my own things... when im living from one small bag with clothes and dont really have my own things around me, it can feel a little weird!!

Then anyway i headed back to A's and it took about 90 minutes instead of 50 minutes. -_-'
  Then it was dinner followed by Ben and Jerrys and a film!!! Perfect and cosy way to end the week :) Now its only 2 days of my break left, so i am going to enjoy them as much as possible!! 



Next week will be super duper stressful with lots of work, tests and deadlines, so hopefully in a week or two i will have more time for blogging, emailing etc because now im just doing those when i have a few free moments, which isnt so often now a days. :/
  But i like having things to do, so im not complaining :)

(Soo much mention of food in this post XD XD Sorry. hahahah -_-' Ill find better things to write about!)

What to do when friends/family are dieting/eating low kcal around you

One of those tough situations you are put in during and after recovery is when friends or family around you are dieting or eating low kcal. That can trigger something within you, thinking that you are doing wrong by ordering a pasta dish when a friend orders a salad, or you eat a magnum ice cream and your sister takes a popsicle... you begin feeling guilty, anxious, triggered. You get self hate for yourself and believe you made the wrong decision because someone ate something that might be less calories. But you need to stop that type of thinking right then and there. To take a moment to just breathe and ask yourself What does it matter what someone else ate/is eating?
   Its easy to compare yourself to others, look at what others are eating and want to do the same thing. But you need to listen to yourself, know what YOUR body needs. There will always be someone dieting, wanting to lose weight or saying they have already eaten/not hungry. that doesnt mean you have to do it as well.


If you go to a cafe with a group of friends and you all order cake and hot chocolate with extra whipped cream and one of your friends orders a diet cola, it can evoke feelings inside of you. But you know what, WHO CARES. Instead enjoy that you can eat that cake or the extra scoop of ice cream or that toasted bagel etc and know that you will enjoy more food later on. You are giving your body energy, and you know what your friend will still eat later on and if they dont, well then feel sorry for them. Because a life without food, a life where you are scared to eat and obsessed with calories, that is a very sad life. Its barely a life at all. Instead be proud and happy of yourself that you are fighting for your health, that you know what your body wants and needs, that you can enjoy all types of food and give your body energy.
   And there will be people who are dieting and trying to lose weight and you know what, some people need to lose weight. Dont get triggered by that... weightloss is not your life goal, some people need it to be healthy that doesnt mean you have to lose weight as well or that you are suddenly in competition or you need to eat less than them.
   You are not a monkey, you shouldnt just follow others. I mean if someone jumps does that mean you have to jump as well? No it doesnt.  Everyone goes their own ways and has to know what is best for them.

So instead of focusing on what others are doing focus on what is best for YOU.

When you get guilty feelings or feel triggered by friends or family, take a moment to just breathe and think rationally. Even if that means you go to the bathroom and just try to calm down for a few moments. Or even sit in the bathroom and write down your thoughts... ive done this before, even if it meant i was gone 10 minutes. That was what i needed to do to calm down and then be able to actually eat. Be kind to yourself and your body!! Having a good motto or mantra to repeat to yourself in tough times is also a good idea :):)


I hope this helps. Focus on YOU and YOUR body and YOUR goals. Not on what others are doing.

(And on a side note, i know at times people react or get triggered when i post a picture of a sugar free chocolate or 0,5% yoghurt etc but remember everyone is different :) I eat normal chocolate just like i eat sugar free chocolate, i eat 4% yoghurt just like i eat 0,5% yoghurt. Its different and all depends on what we have at home or what i am craving. So dont get triggered or react towards one picture or one item!! )




Recovery advice from a reader (NED awareness week)

The post and advice below comes from Olivia , who writes about what has helped her in recovery!!


One of the most helpful things in my recovery was support and knowing that someone   cared.   Having someone who has gone through similar struggles or somebody who is currently struggling with very similar things, it helps knowing youre not alone and that there are people understand. 

Hearing advice and feeling support, I didnt realize that it was actually working until much later. I reached out because there was that tiny glimpse of hope, that maybe things dont have to be like this, that, who knows, maybe recovery is possible for me two. So I reached out, I got advice and found places and people I could be honest with about my ED, someting I couldn't bring myself to do for more than a year. 

One blog post, video or email could change a lot, but it didnt suddenly change my thoughts to healthier ones, made the silent anxiety go away.
Instead it planted that ray of hope and made   my day that tiny bit more positive. Slowly but surely I was going forward. Veeery slowly... I fell back many times, but in me there was still that anger I felt towards all that the ED made me do and how it made me feel. 

I got back up, and thats what matters. I did not give up. If I had given up I probably would've been going up and down in weight, my metabolism would still be messed up and I would have had an irregular period if one at all. I would be possibly failing in school, struggling a lot, feeling hopeless. If I hadn't kept going and fighting my ED I wouldn't have had a blog, I wouldnt have signed up for the Color Run, I wouldn't have been able to enjoy pancakes for breakfast with my friends, I would feel stuck and filled with anxiety. I dont want that. I didnt like not having energy, I dont like knowing that I was slowly killing myself and destroying my health, thats why I chose recovery. 

There is so, so much I wouldve missed out on, opportunities, new people, memories. My ED was not worth having, not in the slightest.  I hope anyone realizes that it is possible for YOU as well. You are not an exception and it IS possible for you too. Chosing recovery is one of the first and hardest steps. But its one that will get you so far, you may not even imagine how far. 

Friday Finds

Food


Craving


foodaddictofficial:

More yummy photos here!

Wanting

(LINK) ^^ They are so pretty!! Want them :)




Motivation


Funny
awwww-cute:

My friend wanted a dog so he went and adopted Hank. He is a little different

Cute


dogsdogsdogs1:

My puppy got some shots and my other dog was comforting herDogs! Dogs! Dogs!
(You might have noticed that i find dogs very cute!!!)