Disordered Eating & Runners (my experience) + I have the BEST Dessert recipe for you.

I can’t stop thinking about all of those affected by Hurricane Harvey.  I cannot even imagine what everyone there is going through.  Our prayers are with you and HERE is how we can all help.

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I updated my GEAR PAGE in case you want to check it out.. I’ve got all of my favorite things on there now—> HERE!  If you need anything running-related, I’ve got what you need!

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It sure felt good to get out there and move again!  7 miles @ 9:18 pace and cool temperatures (I saw other runners out there in sweatshirts)!!  While I was running there were two guys walking towards me and one went to give me a high five but I’m on high alert while running so I sprinted to the other side of the street.  I had to laugh at myself when I realized they were just trying to give me a high five.

Love finishing up before they are awake!

Monday morning= clean the whole house morning with some couch breaks along the way:)

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Tuna is just calling my name these days!  I like to just mix it with bbq sauce (I could put bbq sauce on pretty much everything) to go on top of my Dave’s Killer Bread.

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We made it over to a play area!

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And then had a stop at Costco.  THE GLOVES ARE OUT!?!?  That is not a good sign.  I will be on the treadmill pretty much this entire winter because I do not want to fall.

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I was happy they had the Halloween costumes out too because it is never too early for this holiday obsessed mom to get prepared:)  I’m excited to have three costumes to buy next year!

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We watched Knox preform his Michael Jackson moves…

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Brooke and I cuddled on the couch while he danced.

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Andrew made us this teriyaki chicken last night for dinner and it was a hit for all four of us:)

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And because I am sick of driving to Culver’s to get a shake… I created my own at home to eat in bed.

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Between being pregnant with another little girl and really evaluating how I am going to help my girls to love their bodies and emails that I get from readers struggling with disordered eating… this topic has been on my brain a lot lately.  I can’t tell you how many emails I have gotten over the years from women struggling with amenorrhea that have people tell them that IT’S OKAY that they have lost their periods from exercising too much and/or eating too little.  They also get the advice to just make changes once they want to start having children!?!? I disagree with this way of thinking with every fiber of my being and it breaks my heart.  When we lose our periods due to over-excessing and/or underfeeding it is our body’s RED FLAG TO US that something is not right.  It is our reproductive system shutting down because our body knows it isn’t in a good spot!

I struggled with amenorrhea because my body was in such a rough position.  I was running too much and teaching too many spin classes for the amount of calories I was eating each day.  My body fat was way too low for me.  I was definitely in denial about the situation and my priorities were so messed up (I thought for sure that being lighter would mean I would be faster > my health).  It took two fractured femurs and my doctor explaining to me that I had osteopenia (reduced bone mass) and nearly osteoporosis because of how I was taking care of my body.  My doctor gave me a talk about how if I wanted to have children in the future, I needed to make changes right away.  Which I did.  I stopped running, ate more calories each day and most definitely increased the amount of fat I ate each day (with nut butters, eggs, cheeses, yogurts, avocado etc).  For me personally, I think the most important thing was increasing my BODY FAT.  Just gaining weight wasn’t enough, because I could have gained muscle and I don’t think that would have helped me as much as I needed… I needed to gain fat.  After about six months of working hard towards this goal, I had my period and I’ve had it ever since (besides when I’m pregnant… I even had one 28 days after Brooke was born ha).  PS I was a WAY faster runner with the 30 lbs that I put on compared to when I was underweight (and I also wasn’t injured all of the time:).

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I don’t know where we are at with disordered eating in our community at this point.  I hope that it is a problem that has lessened over the years as we have become more educated about amenorrhea and other health consequences from underfeeding ourselves.  I seriously do not know how in the world I used to go out on these crazy runs without eating a thing before and not much the day before for that matter either.  My safe foods list was short, and my NO foods list was sure long.  I looked at a meal or snack always with the question of, ‘did I work out hard enough today for this?’  Food was thought about more than my people and my obsession to look a certain way took me away from the things I loved doing the most.  And like everyone says that has struggled with this problem, even at my thinnest… I was positive I needed to lose more.

I was constantly looking into a mirror and focusing on myself rather than looking through a window at the other people and the world around me.  I am positive that that just doesn’t equal happiness.

I just finished reading Love Warrior: A Memoir (after hearing Glennon’s story about addictions etc on Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations I was interested in reading her story).  There was a part I loved where she explained to her daughters what the world tries to teach us about how we should look vs reality:

“I think sexy is a grown-up word to describe a person who’s confident that she is already exactly who she was made to be.  A sexy woman knows herself and she likes the way she looks, thinks, and feels.  She doesn’t try to change to match anybody else.  She’s a good friend to herself— kind and patient.  And she knows how to use her words to tell people she trusts about what’s going on inside of her- her fears and anger, love, dreams, mistakes, and needs.   She doesn’t hide her true self because she’s not ashamed.  She knows she’s just human- exactly how God made her and that’s good enough…. Fake sexy is different.  It’s just more hiding.  Real sexy is taking off all of your costumes and being yourself.  Fake sexy is just wearing another costume.  Companies know that people want to be sexy so badly because people want love.  They know that love can’t be sold, so they have big meetings in board rooms and they say, ‘How can we convince people to buy our stuff?  I know!  We’ll promise them that this stuff will make them sexy!” Then they make up what sexy means so they can sell it.”

I know there are SO many factors that play into eating disorders/disordered eating and if you struggle, now is the time to reach out for help (I went to different therapists for years along with family and a lot of prayer).  While I don’t struggle with this problem anymore, I’ve had plenty of days where I struggle feeling like I do not meet the world’s definition of what I should look like but like Glennon said, “I was right to want to be beautiful and sexy.  I was just wrong to have accepted someone else’s idea of what those words mean.”

Feed your body properly, give it the rest it needs and don’t let anyone else’s idea of what you should look like/be like/act like define you.  You are worth so much and you deserve to be happy and healthy.

Other posts I’ve written along the lines of this topic:

Running and Periods:  I wrote this post in 2011 after finally realizing how important it was for me to do everything I could to get my period back.

Running and Periods Part 2:  an update in 2013 after my first post about it.

Are you a runner with disordered eating?

Eating Disorder Talk

Why I still get on the scale backwards  

Female Athlete Triad

Over-Exercising

The 30+ lb difference between my 1st marathon and my 9th marathon

How do we teach our young girls?

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One last thing I need to share with you today… my mom’s delicious dessert that she makes:)  PS I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to like ice cream items again.  Someday candy and I will be reunited but I’m just happy to love ice cream again.

My mom used to make this all of the time and then we all forgot about it somehow until I reminded her the other day about it and she made it for us on Sunday night.

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Here is the recipe.  That homemade hot fudge on top just takes it to the next level.  Let me know if you make it and remember you can always trust my mom’s tried and true recipes because they are the best.

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One more picture from Sunday:)

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Anyone reading from Texas?  Has Hurricane Harvey hit where you are?  

Ever struggled with disordered eating/under-fueling/over exercising/amenorrhea or anything like this before?  What did you do to help yourself?    

A question from Knox… what is your favorite Michael Jackson song?  His is Thriller.

What is your workout today?  Have a specific run that you do on Tuesday’s?  I want the details!

PS don’t forget to check out my gear page if you need anything running related!

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83 comments

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Disordered eating is one of those untalked about things in the running community I think. I think there is a line between watching what you eat and restricting too much and unfortunately a lot of people cross that line too often when trying to get down to a racing weight.

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I think you are SO right Sara! It’s so hard to see it when you are in it too but it is such a huge problem Thank you Sara and I hope you are having a beautiful day.

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Thank you thank you thank you for sharing this! One of the biggest problems with young women/girls (in my opinion) is body image issues and disordered eating! I have had this problem in the past – I would exercise like crazy and never eat enough and it made me feel horrible. I’m a lot better now – I finally came to the realization that I wasn’t going to gain weight if I actually ate normally! Now I’m all about enjoying what I want in moderation :)

I need to try that ice cream dessert ASAP – hooray for being able to enjoy ice cream/sweets again!

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I completely agree with you Erinn! I am so happy you are in such a better place now! Moderation is everything:) I hope you make the ice cream dessert soon, it’s amazing!

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Thank you so much for sharing this. I used to think that runner had to be thin to be fast, but I definitely realize now that it’s not true, and I work really hard to make sure I’m at a healthy weight. I think it’s so important for girls and women to learn to love their bodies. Sure, it’s perfectly fine to want to be fit and healthy, but it becomes dangerous when that striving for “healthy” actually becomes super unhealthy. I love your honesty and openness about your experience and your encouragement for others.

Answer to Knox’s question: This is really difficult. I love the theme song from Free Willy (“Will You Be There?”), but Thriller is certainly a classic!

Also, I just wanted to share because I’m really excited about these things–my surgery yesterday went well, and I’m on the road to recovery. It’s still pretty painful right now, but I should start feeling better in the next couple of weeks. Also, I GOT THE JOB I mentioned last week and had been saying BIG PRAYERS about. So, yesterday was a good day. :)

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I AM SO HAPPY THAT YOUR SURGERY WENT WELL AND THAT YOU GOT THE JOB!! This makes me so so happy! Thank you for sharing Natalie. Continue to keep us updated please!

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Thank you, Janae! I truly appreciate all of your concern and support through all of this!!

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I’m from League City, TX just about 10 min south of Houston. We have been very lucky and have not taken on water (we have gotten water up in our yard and our street has flooded off and on ) and we still have power but some of our dearest friends got nearly a foot of water in their house. We’ve had some scary nights and my girls are getting cabin fever for real BUT we know how blessed we are and we have sent up many prayers of thanksgiving. And a quick mom brag also-my husband and I were gathering blankets and sheets to take to one of the local shelters yesterday and my sweet girls made a pretty large pile of toys and games for us to take also because they are very aware that lots of kiddos no longer have toys. My heart exploded when I saw them doing this!

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I am SO happy that you haven’t had any water in your house. Your girls are amazing… how incredibly thoughtful of them for doing this. Your story gave me goosebumps. I hope that today is a better day for everyone there and please keep me updated on how you are all doing.

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Wonderful post Janae-thank you for sharing the excerpt from the book you read. I listen to the Another Mother Runner podcast and about 4-6 weeks ago (?) there was an episode about the female athlete TRIAD and amenorrhea. Even if the condition doesn’t affect you, I highly recommend listening to it-it was fascinating.

No runs for me for another few days. My achilles was acting up so have been cross training instead (spin class and weight training). I plan to try again this weekend.

That desert looks awesome.

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Oh thank you for sharing (I LOVE new podcasts)! I will definitely listen to this one today. I hope that your achilles starts feeling better ASAP!!! Let me know how it is doing!

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Under fueling and amenorrhea have been ongoing challenges for me; especially since my own stress fracture, I have been really focused on eating properly and balancing my hormones. I’ve learned that counting calories and/or macros often pushes me into an unhealthy space, so I avoid all those tracking apps! Like many former dancers/cheerleaders, I have a complicated relationship with carbs in particular, and I’ve found it helpful to frame my carb intake as fuel for my daily activities. It takes a lot of mental work to re-frame something you’ve thought of as “unhealthy” and “fattening,” but I know how important it is.
My favorite MJ song is also Thriller! I also love the dance.
Just spinning and a little strength training for me today! today is my last day of summer before heading back to teaching:(

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Kerri, I am so sorry about what you have been through over the years. I AM JUST LIKE YOU… I don’t go near tracking calories or macros. It just puts my brain back into a place I don’t want it to be. You are doing an amazing job, keep it up Kerri! ENJOY YOUR LAST DAY OF SUMMER!!

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The coverage of Texas breaks my heart. I am praying and donating. We had Sandy and family members lost their homes so I have an idea just how devastating this is.

Knox, Smooth Criminal is my favorite MJ song.

My mother is anorexic so I have been fairly careful to not lose too much weight. She has a ton of health problems from being so underweight. I am glad you got a handle on yours.

I ran a hilly 4 miler yesterday so I am either running easy or cross-training today.

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That must have been so hard to watch your mother struggle with anorexia. Thank you for sharing with us Nina. Great job on the hills yesterday and enjoy some easy running/cross-training today.

It must be so hard to see what is going on in Texas after experiencing Sandy yourself.

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I always appreciate your transparency about this topic!! I was diagnosed with an eating disorder in college, and running was definitely part of it. I still loved running, but I was obsessed with being fast, and being “healthy”. I say that in quotes because my healthy behaviors (measuring portion sizes, working out, running) were what fueled my problem!! I finally reached out when I felt like it had completely taken over my life, and got into counseling, which helped me so much!! In all, I lost my period for 10 months, and was somehow able to convince myself that it was normal. (??? I have no idea how haha ) But I got it back after being in counseling and by changing the way I ate. I’m so thankful to not struggle with disordered eating anymore, and while there are some hard days still, I’ve kept the balance I need to pretty well I think!

I’m going to walk today for a couple miles and I’ll probably do a prenatal yoga or strength training video! Hope you have a great day ?

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Thank you Amanda for sharing your story. I am so glad that you reached out to get help and and that you were able to switch things around. I think there will always be hard days in the future (just like overcoming any addiction) but you are doing amazing! Enjoy your prenatal yoga (I need to do that) and your walk! Thanks Amanda!

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Can I tell you that I loathe tunafish, but that picture above actually looks good to me (and the idea of mixing it with bbq sauce and not mayo). Maybe *I’m* pregnant. ha ha ha (I’M NOT!!!! lol)

We don’t have a scale in our house (I have two daughters), and I refuse to ever get one. I hate it when they get weighed at the doctor’s office, even. A number doesn’t tell the entire story.

I am OFF today from running. It will be a yoga day. I have 5 weeks until my marathon, and I’m getting to the point where I feel like I have a lot of niggles and feel worry. AND, I had to go back to teaching this week. HELLO CORTISOL FLOODING MY BODY. ha ha One day at a time…………

Fav Michael Jackson song is HARD! Maybe PYT or The Way You Make Me Feel—the upbeat stuff :)

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HAHAHA I am glad the bbq sauce makes the tuna look a bit more appetizing for you ha! I am right there with you… NO SCALES over here! I hope that yoga is great today and FIVE WEEKS… I am so excited for you. You’ve got this and don’t let that worry take over! I hope that teaching is going well and that it is a fabulous week. Oh I love The Way You Make Me Feel too! So good. Thanks Jen!

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Thank you so much for writing this post and so many others like it. I struggled with disordered eating/too low body fat/not getting my period/working out way too much for almost 5 years. It took a lot of time to get to a “normal” place, and I’m still working on it all the time. Especially now that I am about to get married and the fact that we want children has really encouraged me to keep working even harder towards a healthy, strong body.

On a totally different note, I love how much Knox loves Michael Jackson! What a refreshing change in today’s society where kids are growing up with mostly terrible music…..haha

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YES YES YES the desire for having children is what helped me to really stay motivated to take care of my self. Your are doing amazing Allison, keep up the hard work. Oh I love his love for MJ… I could listen to it all day long ha!

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Thank you for this post. I worry all the time about what I’ll be teaching my soon to be 2 daughters about their body image and self esteem. I struggled with disordered eating in my early teens as I was a dancer. It’s amazing how quickly and easily some of those thoughts can sneak back in. When I was losing the baby weight after having my first baby I refused to do anything that involved obsessive calorie counting or weighing of food, I don’t want to get into that habit now and teach it to my daughters some day!

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Yes, I love every word that you said Sara. You are doing amazing for your daughters (when are you due with #2?!)! Keep it up, they are so lucky to have you!

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Due with #2 December 14! 25 weeks today!

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I agree! So many people, doctors included, brush things off whenever there are issues with a girl’s period. This is the body’s way of telling us that something bigger is going on and it’s so important to listen rather than mask it with a pill or with ignorance. Great post, Janae!

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Yep, I agree. I am really hoping that more people are becoming educated on the huge problem that it is! Thanks Laura and I hope you are having an amazing day!

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I am a long-time reader and infrequent commenter, but I wanted to say thank you so much for sharing this. I have struggled with disordered thoughts and habits for many years, and this post is a like a big knowing hug :) It’s a great reminder. Thank you so much.

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Thank you Michelle for your comment. I’m thinking about you and if you ever need to talk, I am here. I hope that you are able to find relief soon with your struggle. xoxox

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Obsessing about how we look is such a weird sort of vanity, right? It doesn’t feel great. It feels like crap. I don’t have full-length mirrors in my house anymore, and I’m a lot happier. It’s amazing how much mental space is freed up when I don’t constantly think/worry about how much I hate my thighs.

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RIGHT!?! It really is such a bizarre thing. I think we all want to feel loved and somehow got the wrong message that looks= love. I love that you don’t have full-length mirrors, we don’t either!

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Knox my favorite Micheal Jackson song is PYT, Thriller is a good one though :)

My workout for today is 8x400m which I was supposed to do yesterday but had to push until today. Sometimes that’s necessary though. While I haven’t struggled with an eating disorder I think it can be common now (unfortunately) since social media helps distort what people think they should be eating. What works for one person diet wise, doesn’t work for someone else. I hope people just realize to eat to fuel their body and not worry about what others are eating.

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Oh I hope your 400s were awesome today! You are so right about one thing working for one person and not another! Thanks for sharing Maureen and I hope you are having a great day!

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Thank you for writing this and being so open and honest about your life and struggles with eating. I have an awful relationship with food and with my body but reading these posts gives me hope. I am sending you a big hug!

Favorite Michael Jackson song – Smooth Criminal :-)

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Torrie, I am truly so so so sorry about where you are at with food and your body right now. I hope that you can find comfort, peace and healing as soon as possible. You are worth so much and you deserve all of the happiness possible. Keep me posted on how you are doing.

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It breaks my heart to see and hear runners okay with losing their periods. It’s not natural and a red flag. As someone who has worked in that field, it’s so sad to hear those issues. Loss of period definitely has long term effects later on. Your bones are much weaker and you cannot outrun that forever.

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Oh I hope your 400s were awesome today! You are so right about one thing working for one person and not another! Thanks for sharing Maureen and I hope you are having a great day!

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I so agree with everything you said Janae! I struggled with an eating disorder in my high school days. I thought that I would be a better, faster runner if I was as light as possible. That led me to lose my period and constantly feel miserable. Doctors also told me that it was ‘no big deal if I didn’t have my period’ and that only fueled my disordered thinking. I agree with you, losing your period is a red flag, not a normal thing!

Great minds must think alike, because I just wrote about things I would share with a friend who is struggling with an eating disorder, from my experience: here.
http://www.luluruns.com/eating-disorder-talk-and-my-biggest-tips-to-gain-freedom/

Thank you for your post! This is such an important topic for the running community!! <3

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Thank you so much Bethany for sharing your experience. I can’t wait to check out your post… THANK YOU!

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I LOVE Brooke’s shirt with the animals! Where did you find that?

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HEY AMY!! I got it from Target:) I love their t-shirts!

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Thanks! I agree, Target has the best stuff!!!

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Thank you for sharing this! I struggled with disordered eating and disordered perceptions of my body for years and still have days that are tougher than others. Your words are so healing and give me hope. I definitely want to look into reading Love Warrior!

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Thank you for sharing Steph and I am SO sorry for what you have struggled with over the years. You’ve got this, keep the hope and take one day at a time. Let me know what you think of Love Warrior!

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I ordered a Hipster belt a couple of days ago. Hope it’s as great as you say it is!! :) My old SPI belt has a hole in it and it still works for my phone but I figured maybe it was time for a new belt.

Now that I have a daughter, I am (maybe too) sensitive about body image issues. Ive told my husband I don’t want to make jokes about being fat or chunky. I don’t want my daughter hearing me say things like “I need to go on a diet.” I want to teach her to eat healthy foods (and sometimes unhealthy foods for fun) but also to teach her to love being active.

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Let me know what you think Joy! I hope you love it! YES YES YES… we do the same thing. I don’t care who I am talking to, the second they mention diet/needing to lose weight etc I ask them to stop if Brooke can hear because I just don’t want her growing up hearing those things. You are doing an amazing job Joy!

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I’m from Lake Jackson, TX which is about 50 miles south of Houston. So far we have been really lucky and have only had about 14″ of rain, and no major flooding yet. It breaks my heart to watch the images of Houston and surrounding communities on the news and social media. Everything’s bigger in Texas so while 50 miles seems far, to us Houston is like our backyard – I go up there at least once or twice a month to play, shop, eat, run races, etc. I have so much love for this part of Texas. Houston feels like home, and I have friends spread all across the region, some of whom have had their homes flooded or damaged from the storm. Thank goodness it seems like the rain will be done today maybe. The scary thing for us down here is that all that flood water comes our way via the rivers and bayous, and those are expected to continue rising in the coming days. Last night the LJ fire department knocked on our door to tell us our neighborhood is under voluntary evacuation, because they expect the streets to flood and be impassable for maybe a week. They don’t expect the houses to flood thankfully. But all the roads out of the county are flooded and we have nowhere we can go…so we loaded up on food and water and are just camped out at home hoping for the best. But so far we have been spared the worst, and I’m so grateful we are safe and we still have our home, food, water and power. It’s funny how things like this really put in perspective what’s actually important in life.

On another positive note, it has been just amazing to see the outpouring of love and support in our communities. Neighbors helping neighbors, people wanting to volunteer and folks from out of state wanting to do anything they can to help. Businesses have been opening their doors to give people a place to stay, people with boats have been helping conduct rescues, a lot of people from Louisiana have come over to help with relief efforts. The sense of community and love around here right now is so strong, and I am thankful for that.

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Kelly, I am very grateful that you have not experienced major flooding in your area yet. I am so happy the rain will be done most likely today but good luck on this oncoming week. I hope that you have enough food and everything. Thinking about you and please keep me updated on how your re doing. It is amazing to see all of the people out there helping and giving. The world is a beautiful place.

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Hi Janae! Loved this post. I don’t think I’ve ever suffered from disordered eating, but I did go through a time where I was obsessed with calories. I’m still trying no to pay much attention to them unless I feel that I’m not feeding myself properly throughout the day. Normally I can notice that by looking at my hunger level during dinner time. If I’m ravenous, I could assume I did’t consume enough protein that day.

My Tuesday runs are normally easy runs. Today I did not run since I decided to take a week off after intense hamstring pain. Today will be the 7th day so hopefully I won’t feel that pain tomorrow.

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Thank you for sharing Nathaly! I am really hoping that your hamstring pain has DISAPPEARED for good by tomorrow! Keep me updated on how you are doing:)

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Totally relate to this. I was anorexic and over-exercised on my way down. Eventually i ran out of energy and fuel to keep working out and I quit and focused on starving myself… it landed me in treatment. Now I am much healthier and actually trying to gain a little weight because I’m naturally thin and I want to be stronger!

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Thank you so much for sharing with me Rachel! I am so sorry you have been through all of this and good luck trying to gain some weight right now! You’ve got this!

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I did a speed workout this morning. I love seeing those improvements, even the small ones.

My brother in law is in Houston. He’s doing good as far as we know, all missionaries were asked to stay inside yesterday and he had another companionship come to stay with them because their apartment flooded. So the biggest hope right now is that they prepared themselves with enough food and water. He’s also right by a river that is close to flooding so we will see what happens.

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WAY TO GO ON THE SPEED WORKOUT JENNY!!! I am so glad that your brother in law is doing well. It is all so scary. Please keep me updated!

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You should totally check out the speech P!nk made at the VMA’s about being true to yourself; I know it doesn’t have too much to do with amenorrhea, but it does have to do with self-identity and changing oneself to fit into the scheme of what society considers “pretty” or “typical runner’s body”. She made the for her daughter who said to her that she felt like she didn’t fit in and that she was ugly. Oh my gosh, Pink is such a kickass mom.

http://people.com/music/mtv-vmas-pink-receives-video-vanguard-award/

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Thank you Linda, I had not heard her message yet and I absolutely loved it. Thank you for sharing this with me:) I hope you are having a beautiful day!

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Houston reader here. Please keep those prayers coming. They are needed. I have been lucky, water was up to about 6 inches from my garage, but by the next morning it had receded. My Mom had to be evacuated by boat from her Senior living place yesterday. That was a very scary experience. If you are familiar with the Houston area, the view from her window in her apartment is the Houston temple (she has often wondered what the golden figure on the top of the temple represented, would love it if you knew and could explain). The images have been horrific and heartwarming. Yesterday I went to go check on some family. I came across a fire station and there was a line of about 20 regular people (meaning not first responders) with their boats hooked up to the back ready to aid in high water rescues. Right now one of the hardest thing for many of us is that the rain has not stopped!

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Sharon, I cannot even imagine what you and your mom have gone through. Thank you for sharing what you guys are experiencing. It must be amazing to see the people out there giving of themselves in such a hard time. Our prayers are with you and we are thinking about you all day long.

As far as the golden figure goes on the temple, that is Angel Moroni and it is a symbolism of looking towards Christ for when He comes again:)

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My absolute best friend moved to Texas just this year. I’ve texted and had my hubby text her constantly to make sure they’re okay. Luckily, she’s far enough away that her family and safe and sound, but OMG it’s so horrible. Being from NC, and being impacted by Hurricane Matthew just last year, I really know how scary it can be — but also how a bit of distance can mean a lot less scary.

I feel like I have disordered eating at the other end of the spectrum. I’m a binger — I eat emotionally and binge to numb feelings or to distract from negative thoughts. It’s something I’ve really had to fight with most of my life. :(

P.Y.T!! sometimes hubby will call me a “pretty young thing” and I think it’s the cutest thing ever…ever!

Today’s workout is a Tabata — 20s on 10 s off for 4 mins — in stations (4 mins at each station). Station 1: Battle Ropes & static hangs, Station 2: Row machine hard, row machine easy, Station 3: Hammer swings and tire jumps, Station 4: Slam balls and russian twists, Station 5: Alternating Dumbbell snatches and “6-inchers” and Station 6: Wallsit

It’s gonna be along one!

There’s a 60 sec rest in between stations, but altogether it’ll be 20 mins of work! Should be a great way to loosen up and get warm after yesterday’s FIRST TRAINING RUN of the SEASON! :D WOO!

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This is a great post. Thank you for sharing this! I struggled with an eating disorder for years and am still working through the recovery process. Anytime negative thoughts come into my head about how my legs are bigger and I’m not as skinny, I keep trying to remind myself that 1.) I’m so much faster and a better athlete and get injured way less and 2.) Life is a million times better now than it was when I was 89 pounds.

Tuesday workout – Progression run! Love them!

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One of the first (and most important) things I read when I started training for my half marathon last year was that running for weight loss and running for performance were pretty much opposing goals. I had finally gotten into running the year before as a way to get healthier weight-wise and more active, and it was really great for me. Had I tried to go through all of my training with the increased mileage but the same eating pattern expectations, I really would have run myself ragged.

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For me, eating well equals taking care of yourself (if that makes any sense), which is something I don’t do well, but am trying to! AKA it’s easier to not focus on yourself, and focus on others / other things.

I am NOT running today :( we are in the middle of a heatwave in SoCal — I’m jealous of your Fall weather!!

PS I’ve never had homemade hot fudge, it sounds like a game changer :)

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Former sufferer of disordered eating, over exercising, and losing my period. In fact, pretty sure our first e-mail was over this topic.
What changed it?? Honestly, I was at this party where I watched a former version of myself afraid, nervous around food, the need for control……..and I saw weakness, not the disordered strength and confidence I gave myself by being disciplined. It was an ah-ha moment. This was not who I wanted to be.
What changed it 100%? Having a daughter. For example, I wanted to enjoy her birthday cake……..and not fake, selfless I will do this for her like it…….I wanted to be that woman, that mom that enjoyed food……enjoyed life!

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Janae – thank you so much for being so open and honest about your experience with this! As a runner currently trying to overcome amenorrhea I appreciate somebody in the public eye sharing her experiences. The running community tends to not talk about disordered eating enough and it’s just so tricky to stay on the healthy side of eating well but not being too restrictive. Thanks for sharing your experiences!

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Thank you so much for writing this, Janae. I’m sure you know, but as a blogger, you’re a role model to many. I think the most dangerous thing a running blogger can do is post about their excessive training and disordered eating under the guise of health. I used to follow many more running blogs than I do now, but many have lost my readership simply because they promote unhealthy eating and exercise habits. Though I’m no longer vulnerable (I’m 100% recovered from my eating disorder), I don’t want to give page clicks to these women. I don’t fault them for needing help and not admitting it, but I do for posting it all online where vulnerable women can easily try to emulate them. If you completely avoid a certain food group (fats, for example), or are terrified of gaining weight, or are addicted to exercise, etc, etc, and you refuse to get help or even admit you have a problem you have NO RIGHT having a blog. I applaud you, Janae, for recognizing that you used to struggle and, even more, ADMITTING that what you used to promote on your blog was unhealthy. I’m so proud of you for recovering, and know that you will be a fantastic role model to your girls, and your readers.
And Knox, I love “The Way You Make me Feel.”

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Janae,
First off thank you writing this post. I am guilty of several of the things you mentioned. As a marathon runner and a spin instructor, I definitely find myself struggling at times with the balance of eating enough calories and fat and trying to maintain good fitness. It’s an ongoing struggle between wanting to perform my best but knowing that my best could probably be improved if I actually ate more.

That said, while I appreciate you bringing up such an important topic, I felt like it was also insensitive to immediately follow it up with dessert recipe. Even reading the title of the post gave me pause because the mention of the dessert, for me, seemed to undermine the seriousness of the bigger topic at hand.

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I still sometimes struggle with disordered eating. Some things that have helped me are 1. asking for help from friends/family 2. figuring out what works for me. I cannot focus on taking whole food groups out of my diet, it’s more about what good for me stuff can I add in :)

I love the movie 13 Going on 30 and the Thriller scene! It’s the best!

This morning, I ran two warm up miles on the treadmill and then met my team for a 55 minute run, and while they ran easy, I added in some intervals so I could stay on my marathon training plan ;)

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I’m not a runner and I wouldn’t say I ever had an eating disorder, but I was a very picky eater and at times would rather eat nothing than the options given. I always had an irregular period and there were a couple times, first being on the swim team where I didn’t get my period for 3 months and second the first semester of college, never got my period. No doctors or even my parents ever talked to me about the importance of getting your period and how it’s a sign of being healthy. I think it’s really important to talk about those topics because I didn’t learn until much later in my own research.
I’m glad you have figured out the eating that works for you to be healthy and carry a healthy baby.

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Thank you for remembering those who are dealing with the hurricane and unrelenting rains. I live north of Houston. We are ok here just a lot of rain and some leaking roofs. We do have family and friends in the Houston area that have evacuated or are unable to leave home because of flooding. What has been so amazing is to see the community reaching out to evacuees. It is so humbling to see all these people who may or may not have homes to go back to, but yet, they are smiling and grateful.
All that aside. I wanted to say that I don’t know you personally but I enjoy reading your blog. I am just a hobby runner so the racing things don’t apply to me- but you seem to just be a genuinely kind and caring person with a positive outlook on life. I always know I will smile when I read about your life and family.
I hope you have a good week and thanks again for putting up content that is positive and encouraging.

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Hi Janae, I’m from Houston. It is absolutely devastating here, but it is heartwarming to see everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, pulling together to help others. Several places have stopped accepting donations and volunteers because of the response. My home and family have not been affected, but all of Houston will be working to overcome Harvey for a long time. Houston is a fantastic place though, and we will be fine! Thank you for asking about us!!

Thank you for your honesty and openness with disorder eating as well. It is definitely enlightening and good to hear, particularly to recognize disordered thoughts. Keep talking about this subject!

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FYI – a number of links in your gear page are broken (tanks and tights).

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STILL!?!?! NOOOOO I am so sorry! I thought I fixed them!

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I struggled with amenorrhea for 15 years and with the help of a book called “No Period Now What” I “recovered” my cycles and am not pregnant!

You should look into that book and tell your readers who are struggling with amenorrhea about it! It seriously changed my life :-)

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THANK YOU for sharing Erin!! I am SO glad that this book was able to help you so much! I will definitely share this on a post! THANK YOU!

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You’re welcome! I just realized I said “not” pregnant and I meant “now” pregnant! I’m right behind you, due in February!!

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That’s what I was thinking;) CONGRATS ERIN!! I’m so so so happy for you guys!

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Awesome post again. I love love love Brooke’s shirt and want to make this recipe!

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Hey there checking in from League City Texas! It’s been a very emotional few days, but it seems like the worst is hopefully over. My car is done for, but everyone is safe and that’s the most important thing. H-town is a huge city but we’re all neighbors!

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As an eating disorder therapist and eating disorder recovery coach, I can go on and on about this topic. Thank you for bringing this topic up and out into the open. The need to “earn” your calories via exercising or restricting, is a disordered thought. We do not have to “earn” nourishment . I have also found this need to restrict calories and increase exercise is to force our bodies to be a certain size, a size YOU determine over the size your body prefers to be. Often called our “set point”, a weight our body is healthy at, often times heavier than most women feel comfortable at. However, if you are having to engage in restriction and exercise to maintain your weight, it is NOT the weight for you. The problem with this is asking the question, Why am I in need of striving to be something, someone I’m not meant to be, a size I am not meant to be…? Usually it can be answered by believing you are not enough and must be “better”, “stronger”, “thinner”. But the real work is knowing you can be seen by others as you are now and can be loved and accepted without being a different version of you.

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thank you for sharing! amenorrhea is something I am struggling with now. I do not know if it is a post-partum or under eating issue. I have started tracking my food to ensure I am getting at least a certain amount of calories. I struggle with eating super clean and have to remind myself that bread can be okay.

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Thank you Janae <3 Your posts on this topic have really been helping me! I have an injury right now (peroneal tendonitis I think?), and I am trying my best not to fall back into my old restrictive eating habits while I am unable to run. I am REALLY hoping I will be able to start running again very soon!

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Hello! Just wondering how much is 1 cube of butter in TBSP or cups?

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I struggled with an eating disorder in high school and found that running has actually helped me to find freedom from it. Personally, the less I think about food or diets or weight, the healthier and happier I am. Intuitive eating really works, apparently! I really love that Knox snuck his own question in there (and his name, by the way!). So excited for you and Andrew and your sweet baby on the way.

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Thanks, I appreciate your honesty. It’s really hard when bloggers think they are ok and they aren’t. Also it’s hard when people focus on numbers. It, seems that if you really struggled with an eating disorder you would know thatsa sensitive topic. So why does this community have to do that? I know you don’t but even in this feed people have to? It’s not useful

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