Weight Loss Support - Losing weight the healthy way post-anorexia
04-06-2011, 09:41 AM
Hi, I'm Cassie. I'm new to to 3fc and was wondering if anyone has had an experience similar to mine. Ever since I can remember, I've been self conscious of my body image. I went very quickly from a plump kid to an anorexic teen... My lowest weight was 112lbs at 5'8, which of course was very unhealthy. I got help at 16 and put on weight to where I was a slim, but healthy 130lbs.
Then I met my boyfriend. As most relationships go, you get happy and comfortable, so you gain weight together. He gained and lost his, I just kept gaining. Over the past six years, I've attempted to lose the weight every day. But the only way I've ever really known how to approach my weight was to go to the farthest ends of the spectrum, starving and binging. For years I've been packing on the pounds because of this cycle of starving for days, then a big binge. Over six years I've packed on nearly ninety pounds...I still can't believe it...all through NOT eating enough! The toll I've taken on my metabolism has been massive. Even though I've been out of this starve/binge cycle for about a year now, my metabolism hasn't seemed to bounce back at all. Now I'm motivated to lose this excess weight the healthy way and for good. I still struggle with the old me, some days it's hard not to fall back into that useless cycle.
So, I know I'm not alone, but I've never talked to anyone who's gone through anything similar...what are your tips? How did you kick start your metabolism? How do you deal with the urge to go back when you get depressed?
Thanks for reading!
04-06-2011, 01:19 PM
I went through something very similar. About 10 years ago I hit my low weight, then I gained to my recovery weight. I then proceeded to gain an additional 40-50 lbs during an extremely stressful summer and I've been fighting it ever since. I'm on my way back to my recovery weight now, and I am finally starting to feel like my body is readjusting.
I think the most important thing for me was to have people around me who are supportive and who know about my history. The thought of going back to that mindset terrifies me, but I know that it's an illness that can creep back if you aren't really careful. It's also a solitary illness, so I've reached out to friends for support in eating healthfully and exercising. The ones who have struggled with their weight (even though they haven't had an eating disorder) know a lot of the same feelings that I struggle with and they can be a good resource.
04-06-2011, 07:55 PM
I am going to recommend the IOWL podcasts to you. I think your weight "issues" run pretty deep by your own admission. I think, especially with an anorexic history, calorie counting could be dangerous for you and that you should first get to the bottom of your emotional issues with food and learn how to eat intuitively. IOWL is a podcast I've been listening to to help me with binging, yes even AFTER losing all the weight I still struggle with binging and am happy to report that I'm almost 4 weeks binge free. It's been a tough emotional struggle, but I feel that I'm making huge progress. My binging when I was heavy was about depression and now that I'm thin it's about anxiety and deprivation during the week as well as an abundance of exercise. Anyway, just google IOWL, start from the begining and give it a try, I think you might be suprised what you learn about yourself and how you can learn to accept you. Good luck!
04-07-2011, 07:42 AM
thanks for the responses and all of the advice! I'll definitely look into IOWL. My biggest obstacle right now is to train myself not to turn to or away from food when I'm feeling emotional. Even though I've been out of the starve/binge cycle for some time (I still binge now and then), I know that I have to pay close attention to myself if I want to really commit to healthy weight loss...it's really easy to get kind of manic and carried away when you start a diet and exercise regimen.
It definitely is really easy to get carried away when trying to get back to your recovery weight. I'm 5'2", I gained 60 pounds in 2008 after moving in with my boyfriend and getting a full time job and just eating crap all the time, and then I lost about 90 pounds (30 pounds below my normal starting weight before I gained so much) and developed an eating disorder somewhere along the way, although I think it had been lurking under the surface since I was a preteen (I would have small bouts of starving and binging and the occasional purge or overexercising).
Anyway, I was terrified of gaining weight and was keeping a white knuckled grip on maintenance (and still COMPLETELY obsessed with food and exercise and weight and blah blah blah) for nearly 2 years before I snapped. I've been binging nearly every single night (usually to the point of this-is-painful-and-I-might-throw-up) since the holidays and gained back 40 pounds in a little less than 4 months. I feel like I'm been living in my own anorexic worst nightmare. Every day I feel like I just can't stand the anxiety that I feel when I resist a binge.
This is my 4th binge free day now, miraculously! Longest time without a binge since before Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, the only way I am able to resist binging and calorie counting (calorie counting is a lot of what got me into this mess in the first place), has been to get up at noon and eat lunch, eat dinner with my family at around 5:30, and then go brush my teeth and not let myself eat anything else the rest of the night because I feel quite certain that once one thing passes my lips, it's going to be a major binge fest.
So obviously I'm still not recovered, but you're not alone in dealing with crap like this so I thought I would share! The only other thing that has helped me is to take a walk when I feel emotional, or if I feel REALLY emotional I'll just crawl into bed and cry it out. Better than stuffing it down with a binge (although occasionally I still want to binge afterwards)