Last Sunday, Superbowl Sunday, my mom handed me a truffle and said, “since you’re being bad today you can have this.” And I thought, am I being bad today? There’s that diet vocabulary again. Yes, I was planning on stuffing myself with buffalo wings and Doritos, but it was a special occasion and I didn’t know it constituted “being bad.” I love my mother probably more than anyone in the world, but she may happen to be the source of a fair portion of my dieting paranoia. I was, after all, nicknamed ‘Thunderthighs’ as a two- year- old. It has taken me pretty much my whole life to get over the idea that I should always be on a diet.
What I’ve realized, after a fair amount of years of hating myself for loving food is that I should never be on a diet. What is this strange obsession we have as a society with the act of dieting? When someone says they’re on a diet, we’re all at once in pity mode but also proud of them and wonder if we too should be on a diet. Gah, the human mind is a truly strange place. I for one gave up dieting forever. Instead I eat. I eat food I love, I love the food I eat-it’s a mutually beneficial situation. I happen to really love healthy foods, fruits, vegetables, water, whole grains, yogurt, seafood. I also happen to love ice cream and chocolate, and let’s not forget sour gummy worms. Oh and brie, I love brie. There’s room for all of it in my life.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I don’t want to wake up one day when I’m old and mourn the fact that I wasted so much of my life, my life when I was young and beautiful and agile, hating myself for not being thin enough. Screw that, I’ve got this body and I’m going to love it. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to lose weight or tone up, I still feel like those are completely normal parts of life-but I don’t think a diet mentality needs to be present in order to do those things. I think looking at what you’re eating and how much your exercising and adjusting accordingly is just a part of life. It’s not a diet unless you unpack it with all the guilt and obsession that comes along with dieting.
Food should never be a source of guilt-it’s a source of life. I may gain and lose a few pounds here and there. I may tone up, but none of that is about dieting anymore. I’m done with those emotions. Everything I do now is about being the healthiest, strongest version of myself. There are no more “being bad” days, there are just days.