What I Ate Wednesday 9/30: Unexpected Rest

I’m linking up with Peas and Crayons today to share some of yesterday’s food with y’all! Waking up yesterday morning, I had my entire day planned out: eat breakfast, go to work, go to the gym, come home, have dinner, chill out, sleep. Everything was in its place. IMG_3858

My day started out according to plan, with oatmeal and coffee for breakfast. I drove to work through the dreary fall weather, still feeling like my day was on track. When I got there, however, I realized I had forgotten my purse at home. Shit. Now I would have to go back home after work, get my headphones and my gym membership card, and drive all the way back to the gym. I wasn’t looking forward to it, but the idea of changing my plan didn’t cross my mind for a moment.

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When I got to work, I whipped up a little soy latte with a scoop of pumpkin and topped it with nutmeg and cinnamon, my latest obsession. After a couple of hours, I was feeling a little off. I was hungry, tired, headache-y, and extremely blah. I drank a couple of glasses of water, adding a packet of Emergen-C to the last one. I never know how much those things help, but I figure they probably don’t hurt. Not to mention, I used to refuse to drink them because of the 25 calories in each packet, so drinking one every now and again is a little fuck you to my eating disorder. Then, I ate a granola bar and a piece of a croissant.

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I was feeling progressively worse as the day went on, and I was thinking of how I was going to make myself go to the gym after work when I felt like I had been hit by a mid-sized SUV.  Oh well, I thought, I’ll get through it. 

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Lunch was extraordinarily average: sandwich, key lime yogurt (not nonfat, by the by), salsa, hummus, and tortilla chips. All in all, it wasn’t bad. But I was still a little hungry after I finished eating and ate an apple and some string cheese before heading back to work.

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Work was unusually busy in the afternoon, and I didn’t get much of a chance to slow down for the next several hours. I snacked on a bag of almonds, jerky, and raisins when I got peckish. By late afternoon, my shift was coming to a close. At this point, I was looking forward to my workout about as much as one looks forward to a spinal tap. I had a full-on headache and I was utterly exhausted, wishing I could stealthily crawl under a counter and take a nap.

Then, a thought dawned on me. I realized that I did not need to do anything simply because it was planned. I asked myself what my body truly wanted, and it answered quite clearly that it wanted to rest. I battled with myself a little bit, but as I drove toward home, singing along to Top 40 radio so that I wouldn’t fall asleep at the wheel, the argument for rest became progressively more convincing.

When I got home, instead of heading back out to the gym, I started running some bath water. I put on comfortable clothes, made a mug of my favorite tea, lit my favorite candle, and rested. I read People magazine in the bath and watched Law & Order: SVU afterward (we all have guilty pleasures, do we not?). It was rest at its finest.

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After my bath, I whipped up a quick dinner of pasta with leftover tomato sauce from a lasagna I made on Monday.

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When I had finished dinner, I started to get a wee bit anxious. I was feeling better after eating something, so I began second guessing my decision to rest. I thought that maybe I should go work out, after all. Just a little bit, I thought. My brain played tug-o-war for a while, but eventually I decided to follow through with my commitment to rest. I knew that choosing to go exercise would be an old coping mechanism for handling the anxiety of eating, and I didn’t want to play into it. So, instead of dragging myself to the gym, I went to my grandpa’s house to pay him a visit. And instead of spending time working out when I had no interest in doing so, I spent time with this cute lil guy. My grandpa is also cute, but in an 89-year-old curmudgeon sort of way.

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Rest was not in yesterday’s plan, but that was perfectly fine. I know that if I had forced exercise upon myself, I would have felt terrible. I would have felt completely run down, hungrier, and crankier, and it would have been a pretty big win for my eating disorder. I heard its beckoning as I drove home, as I lay in the bath, as I watched TV, and as I ate dinner, but I ignored it as best I could. I needed rest and that is precisely what I gave myself. Every moment of every day is an opportunity to listen to our bodies’ needs. I may not win the battle every time, but it feels pretty damn good when I do.

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3 thoughts on “What I Ate Wednesday 9/30: Unexpected Rest

  1. self care and listening to what your body wants is so important; good job on taking care of yourself! Also, that pasta looks delish

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