It was late August 2017 when I hit my diet rock bottom and jumped on the Bright Line Eating (BLE) (www.brightlineeating.com) bandwagon. I talked about it in my post Bustin’ Out at Rock Bottom if you want to read more about that day.
It made sense for me then. It was the answer I needed. I was convinced I was addicted to sweeteners and flours and that giving them up would bring me peace. I was totally convinced by the CEO of BLE that this was the only way to find peace with food and my weight.
Not So Fast
Back then, I was only 15ish pounds away from the arbitrary goal weight I selected. That would have returned me to the last weight I had maintained for a bit but maintenance in my world had been measured in months rather than years.
Right from the start, the weight was melting off me on the BLE plan. I started adding additional food groups to my meals to increase my caloric intake thus decreasing my rate of weight loss.
I blew past that initial goal weight and was losing easily so I kept going. I had no idea as to WHEN I should stop. I wanted the definitive answer. I wanted to know that I had stopped at the perfectly right time. What I didn’t realize at that time is that I was NEVER going to have peace unless I let go completely of the number on the scale and left my body to find it’s happy place on her own terms.
I declared that I was done losing weight in January 2018. I bought some new clothes in a size I NEVER imagined I would ever own and proceeded to be “on maintenance.” All indications of my weight tracking was that my body was continuing to lose more weight. My mind was as unsettled as ever. I wanted to be done and my body was fighting it. It was around that time that I started to question the healthiness of the BLE way of eating and the messaging about what food freedom means in the long term.
Food Freedom Fallacy
Perhaps I was continuing to lose weight because fundamentally I was not meeting my body’s nutritional needs. Perhaps I was crashing in the afternoon because the portions of some of my food choices where not actually what my body needed to function. Perhaps the days of white knuckling it to lunch time and then speed eating so that I could get back to the “important” (aka non-eating) part of my day were clues that I couldn’t see at first. Perhaps it was the folks in the maintenance groups who said that they eat the same food portions every day, no more and no less, regardless of hunger and fullness signals that helped me see the insanity of subscribing to the leader’s plan. I came to realize in March of 2018 that food freedom, for me, is about so much more than just fitting into the smaller clothes I purchased.
There are folks for whom the BLE plan is exactly what they need and will be indefinitely. For me, the more I dug my way out of restrictive diet mindset, the more I realized that BLE was not aligned with my core values: joy, flexibility, gratitude, and community just to name a few. I hope to elaborate more on that in future posts. Now, I’ve seen the truth of how unhealthy BLE and my other past diets have been and I can’t unsee it. My eating and the foundation of my relationship to food will never be the same.
Getting Started Again
As I’m writing this, it is August 2018. It has been one year since I started BLE and about 5 months since I embarked on my #lifeafterbrightlineeating journey. I am wanting to start writing on a regular basis and am actively working on figuring out how to get out of my own way and get my thoughts out of my head and on to the screen. I am guilty of a lot of self-censorship and perfectionism which make writing a bit challenging sometimes. Interestingly, I think that podcasting is so appealing to me because it is less censored by it’s very nature. Once I draft the outline or know what I want to talk about with my guest, I find the process of recording new episodes to be easy and fun. I just need to figure out the way to pull it off in a more timely and consistent way.
I am committed to continuing this work in all these forms at this time. I’m reaching out to experts to help me figure out how to deliver the very best content I can to you, the person who’s stuck with me through this entire post. Thank you for being here! I don’t know how quickly I will settle into a predictable routine but for now, here is how you can stay most easily connected with me.
Intuitively Intermittent Facebook Group – I show up here 3-5 times per week and the community that is blossoming there is truly inspiring. Please join the group if you have any interest in a different discussion regarding intuitive eating. If you don’t have interest in intermittent fasting, you could probably still call yourself an “intermittent eater”. You are welcome to check out the group and contribute to the conversation!
Intuitively Intermittent Podcast – published via Anchor.FM but available on most podcast apps. Please leave me a review in ITunes and subscribe to let the podcasting authorities know what you think of my stuff. As I fine tune my processes, I expect to be publishing 2-4 new episodes a month which will include interviews and solo shows.
This Well-Seasoned Life Blog – this blog has been the quietest channel for a while. I am opening back up to the notion that I can share the story of my past without negating where I’m at currently. I think I’ve been hiding from the back story a bit. Opening up and reflecting on my experiences, in particular with with BLE, are necessary for some of the diet trauma healing that I need to do. I’m going to trust the process as best I can. I’m not sure how all my stories will ultimately come together and it’s possible that they never actually will. If even just one person reads my story and resonates with it, I will consider this blog to be making a difference.