Anxiety, depression, laziness...Can the nameless wonder change?
I just started poking around on the forum and made in intro thread, but I think I'd like keep track of myself through my own "journal" thread.
About me: I'm 23, female, graduated last year with a BA in English, currently working in the IT field. I love learning all things computers and teaching people what I know. I love photography, sewing (though I suck at it) and swimming. I swim a couple of times a week, but am looking to increase the frequency since it makes me feel so much better (about myself, and in general).
Health history: Many people in my family have suffered from depression, some from external stimulus (my grandmother's WWII experiences), and others for no apparent reason (me). I was diagnosed at the age of 15 with generalized anxiety disorder and depression and started taking Celexa and going to therapy. I got one suicide attempt under my belt just before I turned 16 and self-injured in the form of cutting for many years. I quit 5 years ago and it's been 3 years now since I last "slipped up". I know it is not an option and that it doesn't solve anything, but I do still think about it and that makes me feel weak (lovely cyclical nature). Because of this, addiction in general is a concern for me, which is why I am worried about cutting back on carbs (I LOVE BREAD) and sugar (not really a candy bar/"sweets" person, I love baked goods though). I was on and off anti-depressants for a number of years and recently started to take Lexapro at about 7.5 mg (alternating 5mg and 10mg) to help manage my anxiety. I’ve found that my depression is much rarer now than it used to be and I can deal with the bad days when they come around, but I worry a lot and my anxiety affects me daily.
My self-esteem has generally been awful. Even though I was underweight (bordering on the anorexic BMI range) my whole life up until last year, I was never fit. I tried soccer, dancing, but I just got bored with them. Swimming has been the only thing I can stick with. I love floating in the water; I am very buoyant! Last summer, I did laps in my parents’ pool every day for a couple of months and felt much better. I had more energy, I slept well, and I was starting to enjoy my body's condition. Over this past winter, I gained weight and went from around 115 (on average) to 135 (according to a potentially inaccurate scale, I think it adds 5lbs)! That didn’t help my body image in the least and I’m still struggling with that.
I have never eaten well. I ate whatever I wanted for practically 23 years and now my body seems to have grown up. As such, I have no idea how to incorporate veggies into my diet and what veggies I might enjoy. Right now I'm sticking to the things I know, which are asparagus, broccoli and carrots. I don't know how to make a salad/what to put into it that would go well together. Is there a "Cooking for Dummies" book? I like simple foods and simple meals, especially ones that are quick and require minimal dishes to prepare.
5'6" (not gonna change unless my posture gets really bad haha) and 131lbs (just weighed this morning at the doctor's office). I'm not really looking to change my weight, though I wouldn't be sad if I lost some (more interested in seeing fat disappear off my thighs and stomach though). I have no idea what my body fat percentage is. How do I find out something like that?
Goals: Health! I am uncomfortable with the number on the scale, but I am making an effort to avoid scales and just go by how I look and feel. I like the curves, however minimal, that I've got going on now, but I frequently feel like I'd be happier the way I was. I have this idea of what it feels like to be healthy, and I want to see if I can get there. Overall, I want to feel energetic (felt tired for the past 10 years almost), I want to be able to get up in the morning (never been a morning person), and I want to make eating healthy second nature. My boyfriend is swimming with me, so I at least have a buddy in exercise, but he eats just as badly as I have been, so I'm kind of alone on my eating-healthy front.
I've started by cutting out grains for a week to see what happens. So far I've had a lot more bloating than usual, but my body has been so odd lately that I'm not surprised. I was hungry all day yesterday but instantly felt bloated no matter what got into my stomach. Here’s todays meal plan:
Morning: had Greek yogurt (accidentally got low-fat, oops, didn't think they'd even make a low-fat version of it) with a banana. Need to get some protein powder and almond milk (rice milk is out, right?). Oh and bacon. Mmmm. And perfect my hard-boiled egg technique. The shells would not come off of the ones I made yesterday! But they were tasty nonetheless. If I could get up earlier, I would be making bigger breakfasts, but in order to get up earlier, I need to be eating better…cyclical again.
Afternoon: Will have a couple pieces of chicken I grilled up last night (have some ready for the rest of the week) plus some cucumber, grapes & carrots. If I'm still hungry, I'll hit the salad bar downstairs because that is already sounding pretty minimal as my gut starts to rumble.
Evening: Some leftover broccoli & meatballs (cheating, yes, but I'm making an effort)\ whatever veggies I have\more chicken.
Looking this over, I can tell I need to increase my fats, veggies and...well everything. Sigh. Gotta break down all those preconceptions I've had about food! I'll probably post a body pic at some point so I can remind myself of what I'm starting with.