Today is International No Diet Day and to be honest, I just learned this last night. I always wonder who makes these days up, where they come from, and how they spread.
The day is meant to give awareness around the perils of dieting. Facts, stats, comments, stories - the internet is buzzing with (mostly) women sharing that diets suck!
And yeah, they do.
A couple weeks ago, I shared that I recently found my old weightloss blog and it gave me a lot of feels. Mostly sour, but a few glimmers of hope in there.
While I was at the gym tonight, I thought about my own relationship with dieting and realized something profound: the only experience I've had with dieting was when I was too young to even understand my own body.
I saw myself through the lens of a mission to become smaller, be better, make people proud that SEE! I DID IT!
I stopped dieting 4 years ago, so around age 26. I started dieting at age 10 (maybe even sooner). I spent over half my youth focused on trying to lose weight. And it really warped my sense of identity.
Dieting felt exhausting and when I admitted that, it became less of a need in my life. I didn't have the answer regarding what else do (yet) but just confessing that dieting was making me miserable was enough to zap me from wanting to embark upon another diet again.
Health and happiness are individual experiences. Dieting is following the plan of someone else, who doesn't really know you, but believes they know what will "fix" you. It's a completely different approach to your own body and health - why let a stranger convince you THEY know what is best for your body?
They don't know. And I don't know either.
But I DO know that YOU have the ability to listen to yourself more, pay attention to patterns and clues, and make small adjustments as you want which might bring a balance to your health and happiness.
Diets suck at letting your own body-smarts rise up. And when I realized this, I scratched "Start diet on Monday" off my to-do list.