The athletic mindset on food

January 13, 2009 at 5:32 pm 2 comments

When I was younger, I was an athlete, playing sports whenever and wherever I could. I always had the ‘athletic build,’ even though I was/am relatively skinny. And I always had the ‘athletic mindset’ when it came/comes to eating.

When my senior year of high school rolled around, I wasn’t involved in one sport: volleyball. When the season finished up in October, I didn’t have anything athletic to do other than playing on a recreation league basketball team, which was fun but didn’t burn near as many calories as high school varsity sports did.

What I didn’t realize was I could not continue eating the way I used to. No more athlete’s diet. No more carbs! carbs! carbs! And my body suffered because of my lack of knowledge (and my love for the athletic, energy-driven foods, as well as carbs.)

Into college, I still had that athletic form. I still was eating whatever I liked, and I was OK with it. I didn’t start thinking of my body as something I would like to improve until I got involved in the sorority and saw many of my sisters dieting and doing other things to make themselves “look better.”

I started watching what I ate — a little — and tried to work out with some sisters on a regular basis. (It didn’t last long.)

It wasn’t until the summer between my junior and senior years — the summer I spent in Italia — that I was worried about my body. Realizing I would be eating a lot of fabulous, carb-y pasta while in Tuscany, I convinced myself that I would be OK if I gained that pasta weight. Simply because this would probably be the only time I spent in that glorious country.

And I indulged while I was in Cortona. In fact, I added second, third and fourth helpings on my pasta plate simply because it was so damn good. And everything else was incredible.

By the time I got home, my clothing didn’t fit anymore. I didn’t notice a difference until my dad’s girlfriend (now wife) mentioned something about me starving myself while in Italy, which I found absurd.

Apparently, that hill I lived atop was my saving grace. I had to walk up and down it to get into town multiple times a day. Add all the fresh fruit, veggies and food into that, and, to my surprise, I lost quite a bit of weight while in a carb-happy country.

Over the past two and a half years, I have gained the weight back. Currently, I weigh the most I ever have. And while my weight isn’t obscene, I want to knock it back down. But I want more to go along with that, as well.

I want to feel the way I did while in Italy. I was eating fresh food every day. I was walking so much. I was healthy, and I felt incredible.

So, I am resolving to take it back. And since I won’t be living on top of a hill or in my tiny Etruscan town, a lifestyle change is in order. I still have the athlete’s mentality when it comes to eating, and I want to scale back on that. I want to think about what I’m putting into my body. I want to be in shape again. And I want to be happy with the way I feel and look — the way it was when I came home from my European adventure.

This blog and these ladies are going to help me get back to that, and I have already been so encouraged. We’re getting to work, and there will be a noticeable change by April 30th.


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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Sara  |  January 13, 2009 at 10:00 pm

    Such a lucky girl to spend time in Italy! I spent two weeks there in high school and my recollection of the food is much different than yours (granted I was on a crappy tour!)

    We will most definitely have a noticeable change by 4/30 though…that’s for sure!

  • 2. Sara  |  January 14, 2009 at 2:38 am

    Oh and I didn’t have ANY pasta while I was there…they served pan fried veal (and I’m a pseudo vegetarian!!) so I had boiled veggies … not the highlight of my trip!! Again, you’re such a lucky girl! 🙂


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