1. Momma Coale in Boston
My mom was in town last week from Tuesday to Saturday morning and it was SO NICE! Not only was she insanely helpful in helping us get ready for the baby coming in 4 weeks (as in, we now have a nursery + stocked freezer and I am feeling much more prepared) but it was also really nice to spend one on one time with her before this big life change happens.
If you’re looking for some freezer friendly meals for this winter (because who doesn’t need a freezer stocked with delicious food so you don’t have to cook?!) I highly recommend this post from Pinch of Yum with a step by step guide to making quick freezer meals. We used that post for some inspiration. And she also made a batch this chicken pot pie soup, these muffins and these energy balls. And we also ate a lot of delicious food including pizza from Picco and brunch at Tatte.
2. When you need to step back from IE/HAES messaging
I spoke to this a bit a couple weeks ago on Instagram stories and then I got so many messages from women who really resonated with what I was sharing so I thought I’d expand a bit here. I think the Intuitive Eating and Health At Every Size internet world is absolutely incredible. Not only is it filled with helpful and life giving information, but it’s a community that helps many men and women feel less alone in their own journeys. And as an IE/HAES practitioner, it continually inspires me to keep doing this work.
At the same time though, I think sometimes we just need a break. There is life to be lived without always thinking about IE/HAES. This work is so important, not just as a healthcare paradigm, but as a social justice movement so I in no way want to minimize that. But I think sometimes, we just need to live our lives and engage in hobbies and with people that have nothing to do with IE/HAES. In the beginning of your journey, you may need to be completely immersed in this messaging for your healing. But sometimes, and it’s not the same for everyone, but listening to, reading, and watching IE/HAES informed content too often continues to perpetuate that hyperfocus on body and food. And it can be incredibly refreshing, and therapeutic I think, to step away for a bit. To explore a hobby that is totally unrelated to food or body image or exercise. If you’re like, “I have no idea what my hobbies are Robyn.” then spend some time (maybe minutes, hours or days) thinking about what you actually enjoy. Or if you have no idea, brainstorm a list of things you can try out to see if you enjoy them.
For me, my healthiest food and body image days are the ones where I think about food and my body the least. Meaning, I’m too busy living a fulfilling life to put more energy than necessary towards these things. Even as someone who has come to a peaceful and rooted place with food, exercise, and my body over the years…if I’m honest, there are days where outside of seeing clients I just don’t want to talk about food, exercise or body image. I don’t want to see the messaging on Instagram or read/listen to/watch more content on IE/HAES. So I don’t. It’s super refreshing for me to be around friends and family who might know high level what I do, but they really have no idea about IE/HAES (and aren’t stuck in diet culture either) – our conversations are about so many things not related to food/body image/exercise…unless I’m losing my mind over the amazing food I’m currently eating. For me, that’s a huge part of my self care. Stepping back and unplugging from what I do professionally. And personally, especially when I was really walking through the thick of my journey, to take a break.
I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments on this as I’m not expecting everyone to have the same opinion. These are just some thoughts I have swimming around up there 🙂
3. Thinking about a haircut
I write posts about 7-10 days in advance now (vs 7 hours in advance) so I wrote this thought before I got impulsive last week. I called a hair salon in my neighborhood at 11am and booked an 11:3oam appointment. I’ve had this itch to chop some hair off. Nothing really edgy, but just something different. My hair felt BLAHHHHH. And it was annoying me because it felt long and think and just heavy. Here’s the thing though…whenever I see hairstyles I love on Pinterest and then show it to the person cutting my hair (I never have one go-to hair stylist) my hair never ends up looking like that in the long run. Which is probably because my hair’s texture/thickness etc is different than the girl’s on Pinterest. Hello, Robyn!
I wanted something a little below shoulder length and so I showed him a couple photos and I was so happy with how it turned out. I think he chopped a good 4-5+ inches. I haven’t had my hair this short in a long time, but I’m into it. Also, loved the guy who cut my hair and feel sooo much better.
4. Exercise through different seasons of life
I’ve written about intuitive eating and body image in pregnancy and my hope is that those posts were helpful and insightful. If/when I write about pregnancy, I hope it’s educational and helps other women better care for themselves. This is fragile ground I want to be tender with. So if reading about pregnancy in any form is hard for you, my hope is that you’ll skip over this occasional content if you need to, be kind and compassionate with yourself and know that I’m thinking of you <3
Overall, I’ve been really thankful to continue to exercise over the past 36 weeks of being pregnant. I’ve noticed that I’ve had to actively protect my mind from comparative thoughts around exercises I see other pregnant women doing that simply do not feel good for my body. I can imagine that if I hadn’t done a lot of work around listening to my body prior to pregnancy, I’d probably be attempting to run up until 40 weeks. For some women, they feel great running while pregnant so this isn’t to say, “don’t run!” but rather to point out we all have different bodies, pregnant or not. What works for one person, might not work for the next. I haven’t ran since since about 13 weeks because that didn’t feel good on my body. What has felt really good most of the time is spinning, walking, yoga and barre3 with the occasional stair master if I get a wild hair. There are a lot of exercises pregnant women COULD do, but I think the question is…does it feel good in your body? Over the past few weeks as I feel my body changing from day to day, I’ve thought about this a lot.
Just because it felt good 2 weeks ago, doesn’t mean it’s suppose to feel good now. How we feel in our bodies, pregnant or not, is continually changing based on a variety of factors. Just because a certain type of movement feels good one day or over the course of several weeks, doesn’t mean it’s always going to feel good or be right for you. From what I know about female anatomy in pregnancy and from my personal experience, it feels really right and natural to be doing movement right now that opens everything up and makes me feel “stretchy” – I don’t need to strengthen anything or do heart pumping cardio. Some gentle walking or swimming feel best. Outside of those things, I’ve been doing yoga, lots of stretching and the occasional barre3 video that focuses on opening my hips up. Doing movement that gets my body soft/relaxed not only feels good, but makes logical sense to me.
I think social media sends a lot of unhelpful messaging to women about what having a “healthy” pregnancy looks like. Especially when it comes to being active in pregnancy. The most important thing for me is doing what feels good, what makes sense to me and what aligns with my values – certainly in pregnancy, but postpartum and in my non pregnant body.
5. Webinar on PCOS
I’ll be doing a webinar with WellSeek this month on PCOS! If you want to learn about an IE/HAES approach to PCOS, you can read more and sign up over on the WellSeek website. I love working with Monica so when she reached out again for me to do a talk it was a no brainer. I hope you find it helpful and informative!