#NEDAwareness 2016

This past week (February 21-27) has been National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. I usually try to post several things about eating disorders during that time, but this year it just kind of snuck up and slipped past me.

However, I did want to post something about my own journey. I’ve written on the site about my decision to enter treatment and shared lots of info about eating disorders over the years. I think it’s important to be open and honest, mental disorders don’t have good treatment options because people tend to shy away from discussions about them. But today I just wanted to talk about what life looks like for me 7 years after entering treatment.

I still struggle with knowing if I label myself as “recovered” or “recovering” from an eating disorder. I am not actively restricting or using eating disordered behavior. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t have those thoughts. And there are times that I really want to restrict and those desires are particularly strong lately because I do feel like I have very little direction over my life. Thus the impulse for “control” over something.

But the reason I don’t act? I have a child. And she needs me. So I just can’t restrict. I need to be here for her. I want to be here for her.

So is that what recovered looks like? You have enough skills and knowledge to recognize those urges and can dismiss them? Or is that still recovering? Do those thoughts ever go away completely?

I recognize that I have chunks of memory that are just not there from the years that I was really bad with restricting. Friends/family will say something about that time and I realize I don’t remember that event hardly at all. That really bugs me, that my actions truly did cause me to miss out on some of my life. It isn’t like they were consciously decided upon actions. But it was still my actions that lead to the holes.

I really get bugged out at restaurants with calorie counts posted. I let that decide for me what I will eat. “Let’s see… that thing has 486 calories vs that thing has 5. Yes, I will take the pile of lettuce, please.” It’s like all intuitive eating skill flies out the window when confronted with that.

I think I’m eating too much sugar these days. My dietitian worked really hard to get me to stop having “bad foods” and looking at things as all-or-nothing. So I started incorporating foods that I wouldn’t have touched. For the most part, I find that it really is okay and I don’t fall victim to craving the enemy food all the time. But sweets… I love sweets these days and need something sweet after lunch and dinner. Maybe I don’t NEED need it, but my brain sure seems to think so. I’m scared to cut food groups or try to make “regulating” rules for foods again out of fear that I will just start going crazy and end up with an endless list of food rules once more. And once you have that, you pretty much have no options left. So for now… I will eat sugar.

I do not go to any formal treatment or counseling. That ended when I had my daughter because I just don’t have the time. My former therapist is way way way on the other side of town and to have an hour appointment would take about 3 hours out of my day for drive time. Not feasible. Some days I think I need eating disorder counseling still, but really I probably just need someone to talk to because I feel really isolated. My life now revolves around taking care of my kid, work, taking care of my kid and a little sleep and run sprinkled in. ¬†I don’t really have much of a social life these days. Since I don’t go into an office (I telecommute) I don’t get the casual office chit-chat that many get. Sure, I banter with my co-workers on instant message, but it’s not a replacement for friendly, real-life, human interaction and it’s typically pretty job-centric.

I’m glad I entered treatment. I’m glad I have a lot of tools to help me counter the impulses to act on eating disordered thoughts. There are still ED voices in my head, but I think they’re quieter. I just don’t know if the recovery process ends or if you’re always recovering.

I’m Still Around

I miss yet don’t miss posting here regularly. I have been blogging since 2001 (well longer, but that’s how long it’s been called “blogging”, before that it was just random brain dumps posted on the web.) and my brain does think about things to post online all the time automatically since it’s been part of how I operate for so long. I always have ideas, “That would be a good post!” or “I should write about that!”

But… I’m also really busy and I’m completely perplexed how I can be more and more busy every single year. Work gets busier, parenting gets busier and then there isn’t much time left in the day. So… whatever.

I’m still running, but I’m not registered for any races. I have races I want to do, but I’m struggling to pull the trigger and actually register. Well… I am signed up for a Ragnar in July, something I really want to do but I’m also not really thinking about it because I’m just focused on getting through life to July. Getting past getting past a launch at work, getting past my husband’s busy season, getting past a family vacation… but that’s probably delusional. I’m not going to have time to just breathe then. There will always be more stuff to fill my calendar. C’est la vie.

Today I got to go to Pacific Fitness Equipment here in Vegas to try out the new ZR8 Zero Runner from Octane Fitness. I have mentioned it, I bought a ZR7 this past summer and love it. I really think it’s made me a stronger runner. But of course, the natural pattern for¬†products, right after you buy something a new version is released, right? But it was fun to take a couple hours away from work to go check it out. I’ll get a post up about the Zerorunner and my thoughts on it in the next week or so.


I got an Eddie Bauer catalog in the mail the other day, there was a lot of cool stuff, both athletic wear and regular apparel. I’m saving some of it here, so I can remember it if they have one of those 50% off everything sales they tend to do!

They also had some cute regular everyday wear stuff too… although methinks the cardigans and pullovers probably aren’t going to be the best options for me as it’s been in the 70’s round here lately.

Full disclosure… those links are part of a widget that could potentially give me a few pennies. Click it if you want, or don’t. Basically I just think it’s a cool way to collect some items I think are worth a future look when there are big sales!

Wacky Yogurt Flavors With Heat

Does this have anything to do with running? Nope. But yogurt is frequently considered a health food. (or a demon food, depending on which audience you talk to!) So… whatever. Yogurt it is today!

Chobani Chipotle Pineapple yogurt

Saw this on the shelves at the grocery store. The oddity, when compared with the overall dessert-ish vibe of the yogurt section, stood out and I knew I wanted to try it.

Pineapple flavor of yogurt is nice, with little pieces of pineapple interspersed. It was a little thin or watery compared to many Greek yogurts.

Crunchy stuff isn’t sweet. The seeds have a tiny bit of flavor from the granola and the almonds have a subtle smokiness. The heat is there in the granola, but not overpowering. A big spoonful of the granola straight might be too much

Mixed together, it’s just a nice crunch to the yogurt with a hint of heat underneath it all. It’s just enough to sense it but it’s not going to burn out your mouth. I have a fair amount of tolerance for heat and felt this super subtle but if you are sensitive this may burn more. Overall, kind of a pleasant mix!

Sriracha Mango yogurt

I was scared of this yogurt yet really excited to try it. Sriracha ketchup is a fabulous condiment, but I’d never dream of putting sriracha directly in my yogurt.

The yogurt was pleasant, not overly sweet with just a few small pieces of mango. Again, this variety seemed thinner than most Greek yogurts.

All of the crunchy topping stuff was tasty. The sriracha heat was just right. I think I might be tempted to eat it as a snack.

Combining the mango yogurt and the sriracha crunchy things was awesome. Seriously, this was just yummy. The heat was just a faint background burn. Calling it a burn might be too strong, it was just slight intensity. I’d totally buy this again. Oh! Wait… I already have bought it again.

Disclaimer: Because people ask, I bought this with my own money after seeing it on grocery shelves. Nobody prompted me to buy or eat this. I did post a pic on Instagram and had people ask for my feedback on it, so I thought, “Why not write a post? That sounds like something you’d have done before blogging got wacky.”

Running Books to Inspire Teen Girls

Running Books for Girls
My sister-in-law reached out to me over the holidays and wanted to know if I had any book recommendations for a teen girl who is into running. I thought it was a great question, and I had fun revisiting books I’d read and thought might work for this request. Here are some running books for girls I recommend:

Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer

Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer

If you’re not familiar, Kathrine is the first woman to run the Boston Marathon with an official bib number. She didn’t sign up for the race trying to be a revolutionary, but signing up as K. Switzer let her slip through the registration process without being recognized as a woman and thus she changed history. It’s a great non-fiction read about how much change has happened in a relatively short time for woman rights.

Kara Goucher's Running for Women

Kara Goucher’s Running for Women by Kara Goucher

This book contains basics on how-to run and care for yourself during the process, but I think Kara Goucher always presents herself and the sport in a kind and approachable way. It covers the gamut of just starting to training for the marathon, as well as nutrition and keeping a balance.

Sole Sisters

Sole Sisters: Stories of Women and Running by Jennifer Lin & Susan Warner

This book compiles stories from women in all walks of life about how running influences their life. Stories of women who run to battle cancer, to survive after becoming widowed to a teen who connects with her heritage through running, they’re all here. I think it’s important to remind ourselves that even though we all live different lives, there are things that can tie all of us together at any age.

The Running Dream

The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen

The first fiction book I included, this one follows a teen who finds a way to fall back in love with running after she is in an accident that causes her to lose her leg. It’s a story of triumph and compassion that teaches important lessons about never giving up and how all people are worthy of love and friendship, even if they are different from us.

Finishing Kick by Paul Duffau

Finishing Kick by Paul Duffau

I liked this book because of how relatable it is. It’s not like it’s a grand story of someone overcoming a physical disability or illness or becoming a world champion… it’s just a nice fiction book about some of the standard things a teen girl deals with. Boys, sports, school… but all in an incredibly readable way and I think nearly all girls will feel some connection with Callie, the main character.

Now the funny timing of this… I had just recommended all of these books to my SIL when Paul Duffau, the author of Finishing Kick, reached out to me to let me know that the audiobook version of that novel was recently available. And he offered to let me give away a copy of the book here. And since I have enjoyed my interactions with Paul and his books, I was happy to do a giveaway.

In the interest of not encouraging the random giveaway entrants to play, I want to open it up to commenters on this blog post and on the post I will share on my Facebook page about this. I enjoy running with audiobooks (it’s part of what got me through over 50 books in 2015!) and I want to share my love of audiobooks and this story with people that I hope will be truly interested. (See my manifesto post about giveaways.)

So here’s all you need to do for entry… leave a comment with one of your favorite books or just say hello. I’ll choose a winner on January 15.