Hi. I'm 16 years old, female, and a tennis player. Recently I lost 13 pounds and I am struggling to maintain that status. My problem is that I diet and then one day I just sort of enter "don't care, just this once" mode, where I binge on chocolate, bread and butter, - all the things I refuse myself normally. After about an hour, I feel SO guilty and feel like the most worthless piece of crap to ever walk the planet, even though in the beginning I was accepting. Please help!
Hi! There’s a fine line between dieting and an eating disorder, so make sure you don’t overstep it. It’s okay to indulge yourself if you know when to stop. Remember how an out-of-control binge makes you feel: it’s very sweet in the beginning, but tastes really bitter in the end.
Also, no need to freak out and feel like shit: remember, getting in shape is not a daily tally with a bell ringing and the scale adjusting immediately; the calories consumed and burned over weeks and months are the ones that count. So eating the occasional treat isn’t going to ruin your overall efforts. It can actually be a way to surprise your body so that it doesn’t get used to long-term dieting.
To avoid binging, you could try planning your treats: look at your schedule and activities. For example, if you’re going to the movies on Saturday, tell yourself you’ll have caramel popcorn. If you’re particularly looking forward to a food or event, make room for the extra calories in your schedule and scale back a little on other days to make up the difference. By refusing yourself everything for days, you’re making yourself way more likely to suddenly go crazy when feeling deprived.