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A Lengthy HA Update…Grab a Seat

by Courtney on October 23, 2012

A good workout and a great lunch are in the books for today!

Mid-morning, I headed down to the basement for a little cardio. Yesterday’s workout included 30 minutes of walking + 20 minutes of yoga, so I had actually planned on doing a bit of strength training today; but when it came down to it, I just wasn’t in the mood for the weights.

So I hopped on the treadmill and worked up a sweat with about 40 minutes of interval walking. Nothing crazy, but it did the trick. My legs are still unbelievably sore from Sunday’s workout so I’m taking it easy…who knew two sets of a simple leg circuit would would kick my butt so badly??

Lunch

A little while later, it was fooooood time.

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I was all over the place for lunch. First I wanted a PB and banana sandwich, then I wanted a pumpkin yogurt bowl. But I eventually ended up with a bowl of leftovers from last night.

“Mashed” cauliflower (or something like that), chicken, corn, and some added fresh spinach that I wilted quick in the microwave. The whole bowl didn’t totally wow me, but it was filling and nutritious, so I suppose I’ll take it.

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I ate my lunch just out of arms reach from our Halloween candy bowl (currently filled with pretzel and plain M&M’s) and, surprisingly enough, managed to refrain.

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And, actually, that whole scenario leads me to my next order of business…an update on my Hypothalamic Amenorrhea.

In case you’re a newer reader and/or have no idea what I’m talking about, here are a few quick updates…

  • Back in July, I shared my new diagnosis. I was sad, mad, and frustrated, but hopeful that I’d start to feel better about things.
  • In August, I gave you all an update on my exercise routine with HA, and also shared that my body had shown signs of making progress. At that time, I felt comfortable enough with slightly increasing the intensity of some of my workouts and began incorporating some more weight training.
  • In September, I went out and made the decision to purchase some new jeans that actually fit. Even though they were 1-2 sizes larger, it still felt soooo much better wearing something that fit, rather than squeezing into my old ones.

Lately, I’ve had many of you asking how I’m doing/where I’m at/why I’m all of a sudden running…so I figured now would be as good a time as any for an update. Honestly, I have so many feelings about everything right now that I feel like I could write a book. But I promise I’ll try my best to just stick with the facts and keep the rambling to a minimum.

So first things first…how am I doing?

Well, let’s just go ahead and continue with the honesty theme…I am doing pretty BLAH. Last month, I was feeling fairly good about things – I wouldn’t say I was comfortable with where I was at, but I was able to accept it. This month? I just feel like crap, and most of that falls on my shoulders.

For one, when I began this journey to try and regain my health, I told myself I was going to do it the healthy way (i.e., more healthy fats and whole foods, etc.). I started out pretty good with this, and slowly started putting on weight. It was an adjustment, and it was hard, but I knew it was for the better.

Then, somewhere along the way, I apparently decided to swap healthy fats for nightly dishes of this…

and treats like this…

and a whole lot of this…

Suddenly, I developed a “heyyy, whatever! I need to gain weight so I’m gonna eat and drink whatever I want” attitude. Because I consumed so much of it, I was now craving carbs, sweets, and even beer like it was nobody’s business. And let me tell ya, it worked…in the sense that I am now up about 15 pounds.

Talk about an eye opener…

This is where I feel like I could go on forever so I’m gonna try to keep things simple. Am I upset about the weight gain? Yes. I’m at a weight that I haven’t seen since my early years in high school. Sometimes I look in the mirror and I don’t even recognize myself.

I know I needed to do it, and I’m okay with that because there are more important things that I want in life right now; but what I am upset about is the fact that I started going about it all the wrong way. I threw caution to the wind and started indulging in things like I haven’t done in ages. Now, not only has my weight gone up, but it’s left me feeling sluggish, less energetic, and just sort of BLAH. This was not how I had set out to do this.

So why am I running all of a sudden if I’m still dealing with HA?

The good news is that my body has responded to the weight gain (don’t make me get into more details – you should allll know what I’m talkin’ about!) which I am thrilled about. That being said, with the whole running thing…I have not decided to start incorporating running back into my exercise routine on a regular basis.

The running I did a couple of weeks back was done mostly out of frustration more than anything else. I had received some bittersweet but devastating news and this wound up being one way for me to deal with it. The good thing that came out of all of that was that I discovered that my body is capable of doing things I wasn’t sure it’d be capable of, and I’ve been working hard to find the positive from all of that. Thankfully, I am healthy and still making progress so I’ll just leave it at that.

So basically, where am I at now?

Well, right now I’m not feeling so hot about myself, but that’s okay because I sort of dug my own grave with this one. Over the weekend I had a few emotional moments and really sat down to look at the whole picture. I feel like I’m now on the upswing and have made the decision to really buckle down and make some healthier choices…not only to prevent my waistline from growing out of control, but also for my overall health (FYI: you will most likely gain weight by gorging on ice cream and excess carbs everyday, but it is not going to leave you feeling great. Trust me!).

This does NOT mean I’m “dieting” or trying to lose the weight…it just means I’m making a concerted effort to stick with healthy choices, keep the extra treats to a minimum (I’m not nixing them all together…that’d be crazy talk), and feel better about my overall health.

Yeah, I’m ready to feel like him. Winking smile

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{ 105 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Anya October 23, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Courtney…you are wonderful. It takes a lot of courage to be vulnerable but your honesty is absolutely beautiful. I have gone through a very similar situation and you are such an inspiration. Your courage to share about your health and personal struggles is why this is my favorite blog. Thank you! Stay strong beautiful lady! :)

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2 Khushboo October 23, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Sending a big hug your way, Courtney :)
Khushboo recently posted..A Taste of Naples

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3 Michelle@Peachy Palate October 23, 2012 at 2:52 pm

When I was recovering from anorexia I began binge eating, much more extreme than what you describe (which actually led to bulimia) but I can totally empathise with you how you feel. Gaining weight and feeling healthy can be achieved, and it feels so much better then when you feel sluggish. I can honestly say that from photos you look amazing, if I thought differently I’d just say nothing! It’s really important not to beat yourself up, it will only leaving you want more comforting food! Weekly meal planning might help? It helped me throughout the various stages of recovery and it keeps me on the straight and narrow in every sense these days! :)
Michelle@Peachy Palate recently posted..Plans averted

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4 Natalie @ Free Range Human October 23, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Your honesty is so brave-thank you for sharing! I’m sorry that you’re feeling BLAH right now, but it’s great that you recognize what’s going on and are taking positive steps to change it. I’m sure things are definitely on the upswing :)
Natalie @ Free Range Human recently posted..No Rest For The Weary….

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5 Elaine October 23, 2012 at 2:56 pm

We are all human and all fall into traps like that. Heck, I feel like that’s a battle every weekend for me! Too much alcohol, too much bad food, not enough exercise. So, I start the week off on the right foot only to repeat the process again. My poor body. But the important thing is that you recognize what you are doing and you are making changes to improve your physical and emotional health. That right there is success! So celebrate the first success, that will surely turn into more success and a happier you down the road. :)
Elaine recently posted..Brownie Baked Oatmeal

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6 Lisa October 23, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Your experiences on your HA have been really eye opening and I thank you for being so candid with us. I’m sorry you have been struggling with things, but the good news is that things are back on the regular…and that should really be the most important thing. It would be pretty devastating if you ended up getting osteoperosis because you avoided the issue. I totally understand the body image thing, I’m currently going through that and it is incredibly frustrating and I feel like its unfair. Although I know I’m being silly by thinking this way. I’m hoping you get back to feeling amazing, because regardless of your size or weight you are a beautiful person who is so kind and an incredible person!
Lisa recently posted..Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites

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7 Lindsay's List October 23, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Awesome update, court!! You should read Janetha’s post from yesterday – helped me not reach for the candy corn today. ;)
Lindsay’s List recently posted..palm beach athletic wear fashion show

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8 Sarah @ Blonde Bostonian October 23, 2012 at 3:01 pm

I can only imagine how hard it has been for you. If running makes you feel good, do it. I think it’s great that you’re not reacting by going on a crazy restrictive diet, but you’re deciding to focus more on healthy, whole foods. Bravo Courtney! Best of luck!
Sarah @ Blonde Bostonian recently posted..ENERGYbits Review

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9 Shanna, like Banana October 23, 2012 at 3:06 pm

I for one think you look positively great! I can’t even tell that you gained weight — seriously!

But I do know what you mean about eating like crap for extended periods of time. It’s fun while you’re doing it, but miserable afterwards when you feel like a slug.

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10 Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl October 23, 2012 at 3:06 pm

While I do not understand what you are going through and am in a different boat, I am in the process of trying to gain a few pounds. With my newly vegetarian and sometimes vegan (3 days a week) diet, I dropped a lot pounds…enough to the point of where I am technically “underweight.” I decided about a week ago that I really need to put on a few pounds to be healthier, look better, and fit into my clothes better. I am doing my best to take in extra calories by choosing healthy foods and healthy fats. But I too, feel tempted at times to stray from this. I am telling myself that I can enjoy extra calories and fats in “bad” ways in moderation, but I mostly plan on sticking to the “good” ways to gain weight. Thank you for sharing your update. It is a good reminder of how we can all get off track a bit at times, but can most certainly bounce back into good eating and exercising habits for the good of our body AND our mind. You’ll be back on track in no time, I am sure! Smile! :)
Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl recently posted..Lightened-Up Veggie Mac & Cheese

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11 michelle kim October 23, 2012 at 3:06 pm

I truly appreciate your honesty in sharing all your thoughts and feelings as you find a balance of all these changes.
I also stopped having my period for about one year when I was in high school (due to anorexia). I remember when I had started getting my period again, I knew I was “healthy” again, but saw that I had gone from 98 pounds to 130 pounds (healthy weight for someone who’s 5 ft 7in) and I became depressed. My body felt so foreign to me. I was used to being tiny and even though I was looking healthy and my hair was growing in again, I was an emotional mess.
The one thing I didn’t do was talk about all this with my friends for fear that they wouldn’t understand me. I’m so so glad to see that you have the courage to share these struggles with us and to be so vulnerable and honest. Thank you so much!
michelle kim recently posted..A Calling

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12 Mary Beth October 23, 2012 at 3:10 pm

I’m sending some good vibes your way, I know it sucks bologna sometimes but keep up your hard work and know we’re all rooting for you :)
Mary Beth recently posted..3 for Thursday

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13 Diana October 23, 2012 at 3:11 pm

Thank you, as always, for being so open. I did the EXACT same thing when i needed to gain weight. I just recently had my little wake up call and am back to maintaining my new body with healthy foods. Its just so hard to pass up the cookies when I am a little down and supposed to be gaining anyways! ugh! You still look amazing from what I see on the blog. Thanks again! xo

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14 carlyn October 23, 2012 at 3:13 pm

:hugs: you got this!
carlyn recently posted..Protein Power! [Review]

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15 Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes October 23, 2012 at 3:16 pm

Thanks for the update, Courtney, and I’m sending you a virtual hug!
Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes recently posted..No-Bake Peanut Butter Protein Bars

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16 Silvia @skinny jeans food October 23, 2012 at 3:16 pm

Oh Courtney, I am sorry you are feeling blah — but remember whatever you want to achieve (feeling better, energetic and all the other things….) you can’t on beer and candy corn (not too much of it anyhow). Hugs!
Silvia @skinny jeans food recently posted..Cat weightloss update

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17 Tiffany @SkinnyTiffanyBlog October 23, 2012 at 3:17 pm

You are such an inspiration. I look forward to reading your blog everyday!! :) Keep your chin up, you look great!!
Tiffany @SkinnyTiffanyBlog recently posted..Day 23 – Shopping!! & "Before" Insanity Pics

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18 Rachel October 23, 2012 at 3:17 pm

Thank you so much Courtney for posting this and letting us know about your HA. I lost my period from too much running/not enough food over the summer again and my weight keeps going up and down and it is depressing but I also got mine back this past month– not how I’d like it but it was there– and I really think having that and knowing you’re healthy is definitely more important than the number on the scale. xx sending you hugs!
Rachel recently posted..The Soundtrack to my life…

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19 Steph @ StephSnacks October 23, 2012 at 3:22 pm

Courtney I really appreciate your honest posts’ about your struggle with HA. I can relate to you on SO many levels because there was once a point in my life when I struggled with an eating disorder and now I have gained the appropriate amount of weight. However, because I have gained the weight, I also started having fun and indulging more often than I’d care to admit. I am now in a place where I am trying to really bring my ‘balance’ back and become comfortable with what I eat and when I workout.
Steph @ StephSnacks recently posted..Cape Food

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20 Lauren @ Chocolate, Cheese and Wine October 23, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Courtney,

I really, sincerely appreciate you sharing this. I admire your honesty and your ability to share. I know you can get back on track and that this will all be worth it in the end (even though sometimes it might not feel that way).
Lauren @ Chocolate, Cheese and Wine recently posted..Pumpkin Chocolate Muffins – A Cake Mix Recipe

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21 Brittany @ ReadRunRepeat October 23, 2012 at 3:33 pm

Court – your honesty throughout your while jouney has been inspiring and I admire you for being willing to share with your readers! It’s easy to fall down the sweets trap when you’re having to gain weight – why not eat the yummy stuff!!- and even easier when there is an emotional component as well!! I think that you are doing great and know that you will be back on track in no time! Sending hugs and positive thinking your way :)
Brittany @ ReadRunRepeat recently posted..Bad Blogger Alert…

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22 Ashlee October 23, 2012 at 3:37 pm

Good for you for making the decision to feel good again, whatever that means for you! I honestly think you look great in all of your recent pictures!

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23 Heather October 23, 2012 at 3:38 pm

I know this doesn’t necessarily help but as a somewhat new reader, I think you look great and I can’t tell you’ve gained any weight from your pictures! I can’t imagine you being 15 lbs less than you are now. :)

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24 Whitney October 23, 2012 at 3:40 pm

Thanks for your honesty on your HA update. It would be so easy for you to pretend like you are having the best time gaining weight, blah blah but it takes a lot of courage to share the truth. I am glad your body has responded positively to it. I wish you continued success on your journey to be healthy! xoxo

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25 Lauri October 23, 2012 at 3:41 pm

First and foremost I know that it mainly matters how we feel about ourselves an now what others say/think but I’ve been reading your blog for awhile now and I think you look as great as ever!! I honestly couldn’t tell you had gained one proud, you are beautiful and healthy and look the same!

With that said I do know that blah feeling you are talking about but try not to beat yourself up too much over it – you room steps to make yourself healthier and deal with your diagnosis and you got your body back on track – of you indulged in a few too many treats along the way it isn’t the end of the world! They not to be too hard on yourself…
Lauri recently posted..T-7 days!

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26 Lindsey October 23, 2012 at 3:44 pm

Thanks for the update and do not be too hard on yourself. You beat HA! I am currently trying to and struggling with the though of gaining weight and how to go about it. So seeing you beat it is a inspiration for me :)
Lindsey recently posted..Movie Watching & Pumpkin Carving

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27 Shana October 23, 2012 at 3:45 pm

I wouldn’t say you made bad choices or did anything wrong. Your body craved sweets, sugar, and carbs because it needed them. Now you just have re-train your brain and body to trust that it doesn’t need to crave those things because you’ll be giving it what it needs to stay healthy. Consider this phase 2 of treatment: in phase one you gave your body all the medicine ( extra calories in any form) it needed to get going and in phase two, you’ll wean your brain off of the “medicine” since your body no longer needs it. You got this :)
Shana recently posted..Roaring 20′s

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28 Shana October 23, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Just as an aside: Didn’t your doctor initially recommend the “Haagan Dazs” diet? Gee, I wonder why you had such strong cravings for ice cream!!
Shana recently posted..Roaring 20′s

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29 Kari October 23, 2012 at 5:25 pm

I think that is a WONDERFUL way to look at the whole situation, Shana! I truly believe your body craves what it needs! Keep it up, Courtney – you look great!!

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30 ellie October 23, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Really good point- I’ve always been told that when a body is below it’s set-point, it really doesn’t matter. Over and above all, it just needs more calories in any form ( a lot of people who rare recovering from anorexia go into hypermetabolic states and require upwards of 4000+ calories…a lot easier to get down when you make a milkshake with nutella and Ben and Jerry’s than if all those calories come from brown rice and tofu). So yeah…you’re dwere giving your body exactly what it needed and now it’s the next stage. Rooting for you :)

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31 Karen October 23, 2012 at 3:46 pm

You are amazing- that is all :)

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32 Paige @ Your Trainer Paige October 23, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Ah, Courtney – I for one am so proud of you! For knowing what you should do – and doing it! Like you said, your body’s responding the right direction, and hopefully will just continue to respond better and better. Also, I think you look fabulous ;) <3 ya, girl!
Paige @ Your Trainer Paige recently posted..Ketchup Talk

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33 Amanda @ .running with spoons. October 23, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Thank you for your honesty, Courtney. Having had gone through the whole process of weight gain myself, I know how completely miserable it can make you, and while I don’t think it’s good to dwell on those negative feelings, I’m not a big fan of people who pretend like everything is all sunshine and rainbows. I’m really sorry to hear that you’ve been feeling so BLAH lately, but I definitely think that taking charge of your eating habits will make you feel a bit better. Hang in there, girl… it’s a slow and agonizing process, but you can do it :)
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34 Michelle (Better with Berries) October 23, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Courtney,

I love your honesty – it’s why I love your blog! Even though I’m not experiencing HA, I so appreciate everything you share because I know you’re helping so many women who ARE experiencing HA, or who might in the future. I’m sending well wishes your way!
Michelle (Better with Berries) recently posted..Mozzarella Pesto Panini

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35 ellie October 23, 2012 at 3:57 pm

I know I said on twitter I never comment on blogs but again, wanted to say how much I admire your honesty. Physical changes, however necessary they might be, are still changes which are always an adjustment- coupled with habits that might be making you feel less-than-steller, I’m really glad you felt able to update and share that on some level, there’s been marked progress, on another level…it feels kinda crummy sometimes. People think that having to gain weight is fun because, “Hey- go wild! Eat whatever you want” but it’s never quite that straightforward. I could babble on for ages about this but I’ll spare you and just say again that I’m glad you shared because I think there’s probably more people than you are aware of going through the process of gaining to a healthier weight (for whatever reasons) and facing the same ups and downs that go along with that. Just take it easy on yourself- getting healthier is a process, not an event.

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36 Marielle October 23, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Thanks for sharing your story with us and being so honest. I haven’t gone through this myself but I’m sure you have to kind of take it one day at a time and it sounds like you are heading in the right direction. Best wishes!
Marielle recently posted..Fit Apps And Monday Funny

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37 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey October 23, 2012 at 4:24 pm

Ugh, I could have written this post myself. (are you surprised?) More and more often I have been finding myself reaching for M&M’s, extra chocolate at night (thank you for enabling me), and extra treats (like about 5 reese’s cups I downed this weekend). NOT healthy! I’m at a weight where things are still moving in the same direction, and I’m sure I could even lose weight and still function just fine (although that’s not my intent at the current moment).

If you’re about to reach for that ice cream when you don’t really want it, you know who to text! :)
chelsey @ clean eating chelsey recently posted..my very first camping experience

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38 Holly October 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm

Court…
I first just have to tell you that I love ya. I love how open & honest you are. I love that you don’t try to sugar coat it. & I love that you are REALISTIC about the situation. (like not saying that you are cutting out 100% of sweets…because well I really don’t think it’s realistic for anyone to say that..just my opinion)
Second, I *think* I may know what you are going through (or rather were going through) & I am so sorry you had to deal with that. Although I’m hoping it’s not that…I think it may be :/
I just wanted to tell you that your pictures lately have been beautiful! You are glowing. Really you are. I know you don’t see it, but I have noticed how AWESOME your skin looks & HOW SHINY your hair is. (Yes, yes I am jealous ;) )
Just know you have a ton of support & lots of people rooting for you!
Much love <3
Holly recently posted..8.5 Months

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39 Erica @ For the Sake of Cake October 23, 2012 at 4:32 pm

Thank you for being so honest and upfront with everything Courtney! I imagine having to gain weight would be a difficult thing to face, and I could see myself falling into the exact same thing that happened to you! Wishing you the best as you “refocus” your efforts! :-)
Erica @ For the Sake of Cake recently posted..Weekend Recap (10/20-10/21)

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40 Karla October 23, 2012 at 4:41 pm

I just had to tell you that I read your blog everyday and I don’t see a difference! I think you’re as beautiful as ever!
Karla recently posted..Sometimes all I want to do is binge

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41 Shannon October 23, 2012 at 4:54 pm

I’m happy to hear an update on this from you. I really commend you for sharing your story. This must be tough to share a personal story to thousands of readers that read your blog on a daily basis. So kudos to you! :)

If you’re not able to have children in the long run (which would be really sad- I know that), there are plenty of children out in the world that have already been born and are looking for a permanent family that they can call home to. Adoption isn’t a bad thing.

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42 katie Carso October 23, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Everything will work out for you, I know it ! I know how hard it is, trust me. I am grateful I got mine back, I only gained 5 lbs but I totally stopped intense exercise and that is what killed me. I didn’t even weigh myself, care about putting on weight, or whatever. I missed the exercise high and it was SO hard not getting that.

Although I have had my period back since end of august I am still being cautious and playing it safe!

I think true beauty is on the inside and feeling comfortable and beautiful is all that matters. I am all about honoring my body now and now that I am 30 that is SO important more than ever to me. I don’t want to make the same mistakes I did with my body in the past. Oh I wish I knew then what I knew now, lol. Don’t we all!

Sending love <3
katie Carso recently posted..Chocolate has taken over!

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43 Carissa @Fit2Flex October 23, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Just sending love to you and a thank you for being so open and honest about your struggles and your emotions. Weight is something that I think 99% of women struggle with in some way or form. Your battle is unique to you, but everyone can understand that feeling of “I just don’t love what I see right now”. Keep focused on your health and thank you for being a great blogger and fit inspiration!
Carissa @Fit2Flex recently posted..Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival

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44 Chelsea @ Chelsea Eats Treats October 23, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Thank you for your honestly!! I appreciate it :) And I love your overall outlook on your situation. Yes it totally sucks what you are going through, but you are working hard and that’s all you can do. You have a great mindset and attitude and you will pull through! Like you said, it’s all about the big picture!
Chelsea @ Chelsea Eats Treats recently posted..Candy Corn Cookies

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45 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles October 23, 2012 at 5:24 pm

You’re awesome….. :) …..That’s all.
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46 Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries October 23, 2012 at 6:11 pm

I, for one, think you look amazing first of all. I think we all have to take a step back every so often and reevaluate our eating habits and lifestyle at times. It happens! I’m proud of you! xoxo
Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries recently posted..Week 16: Random Pregnancy Thoughts

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47 Juile October 23, 2012 at 6:17 pm

Stay strong! Everything you are doing and realizing now will pay off. I love how honest you are – we are all human and we all make mistakes, the beauty comes from realizing our mistakes and working to better ourselves. And honestly, nothing you are doing (at least in my book) even qualifies as a mistake – life is too short to be anythign but happy, and if that means having a bowl of ice cream every once in a while, then so be it! Keep it up girl, you are an inspiration for your readers!!!

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48 Suzanne @ Fit Minded Mom October 23, 2012 at 6:20 pm

You know what, that 15 pounds seems like so much to you and I totally get it but from a person outside looking in, you are still beyond gorgeous. However, I know it is more than that, it can be hard to be comfortable with yourself at a heavier weight, especially when it wasn’t put on in the healthiest of ways. Try to be mindful of your eating habits but I hope you won’t be too hard on yourself. You deserve to treat your self nicely :-)!!

On another note, I am sorry your body let you down in one way but like you said, at least it showed you that it was capable of doing what you need it too!!
Suzanne @ Fit Minded Mom recently posted..Sometimes Less = More

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49 Lauren @The Homeostatic Mindset October 23, 2012 at 6:27 pm

I think you are being far too hard on yourself. So, you weren’t ‘perfect.’ You didn’t gain weight in an entirely ‘perfect’ way, or the way you ‘should’ have. Who cares! All that matters is that you did gain, your body is working every month and your future is bright! All of your fairytale dreams CAN be a reality now. Sure, less sugar makes everyone feel better, but PLEASE don’t be so hard on yourself. I’m going through gaining now (~25 pounds since I began recovery) and yes, some days are very hard. But in the end, I’m getting healthier. And that’s all that matters. <3
Lauren @The Homeostatic Mindset recently posted..More Inspiration

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50 Katy October 23, 2012 at 6:30 pm

You are incredible. It takes so much to admit and discuss the things you do. I won’t go ahead and say I know how you feel because I certainly don’t, but I have been in a terrible food routine as of late and I have also been feeling very BLAH! It’s ridiculous how the body works. The more crap you give it, the more it craves. It’s so easy to get into a rut. It’s so important to make that distinction between healthy fats and unhealthy fats and how different they both make you feel. I look forward to hearing about your transformation. You got this!
Katy recently posted..Game Time Goodies

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51 Ashlee @ A Step in the Right Direction October 23, 2012 at 6:31 pm

You are a beautiful person inside and out. (and I do not even know you personally)
I totally get what you mean about not feeling good after making not so good choices. I binged on Saturday and regretted in all night. HA seems like a big adjustment for you to deal with, but think of the benefits and the family you will start in the future :)
You are an amazing person! :)
Ashlee @ A Step in the Right Direction recently posted..Monday Weigh In

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52 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles October 23, 2012 at 6:32 pm

Definitely appreciate this post Courtney, it must not have been easy to write! I personally (and the rest of the world I’m sure) think you look incredible, but I can understand not feeling comfortable in your own body. Now that you’ve realized what happened you can reevaluate your habits and straighten them out a little bit, while maintaining that health you’ve earned back.
Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted..The ACV Update.

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53 Erica October 23, 2012 at 6:32 pm

You are honestly – without a doubt – an incredibly brave, endlessly inspiring, absolutely fabulous person! And I know you don’t know me at all, and I know that it truly doesn’t mean much BUT you have truly helped me overcome so many issues related to my body-image. The way you explain things is so sweet and eloquent….AND I JUST LOOK UP TO YOU SO MUCH! And this post just proves all my reason why.

Sending so many good vibes and hugs!!!
THANK YOU SO MUCH <3

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54 Melissa October 23, 2012 at 6:36 pm

Wow, I just got caught up on your whole HA diagnosis :( That really stinks! Sometimes I think the worst things happen to women with all the hormones and nonsense our bodies have to deal with. There’s always so much weight gain and loss in a woman’s life, but you never really hear of men having to deal with that… It’s just not fair! But it’s awesome to see you being honest with yourself and having a loving attitude anyway. Things WILL get better. What goes down must come back up :)
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55 Chelsea @ GlitterAndSweat October 23, 2012 at 6:38 pm

I know what you mean!! everytime i eat extra carbs or sugary concoctions, i’m defiantly left feeling crappy about myself and very very sluggish. it’s hard to make good food decisions, but worth it in the long run, you got this :)
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56 Danica @ It's Progression October 23, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Like many others have said, I love that you’ve been so honest in each of these updates…I can relate to this in a lot of ways–things I haven’t shared on my blog or with much of my family even, but I can understand that feeling of BLAH when you’re, in a sense, struggling with weight…You’re beautiful though Courtney and you can’t be too hard on yourself. You should be proud of yourself for doing what you needed to in the past few months to bring your body back to being truly healthy. Just keep learning as you go and think about how far you’ve come since your diagnosis, or even before that! Keep on moving on–I KNOW that every single one of these struggles is going to pay off for you soon!
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57 Sarah October 23, 2012 at 7:25 pm

This is such an honest post. I know how hard it is. I did the exact same thing when I was told to gain weight. I might as well eat lots of cake and ice cream and pizza since those are yummy foods, right? Wrong. I just felt bloated all the time. Now I eat much more balanced and while I miss being the “skinny” one, I’m at a healthy weight. It takes time to accept it, though, and you’ll be glad you made the realization!
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58 erica October 23, 2012 at 7:27 pm

thanks for your honesty, courtney. just remember that you are beautiful, intelligent, and kind woman. as you continue on this journey towards a healthy lifestyle, try to focus less on the “number” and more on how you FEEL. i know that can be a challenge, but i truly believe that is part of becoming holistically happy and healthy. :)
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59 Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance October 23, 2012 at 7:34 pm

As everybody else already said, you are AMAZING! Thank you for being so open and transparent about a topic that usually goes under the radar. Just so you know, I have specifically thought to myself how BEAUTIFUL you look in your pictures lately– don’t let your brain tell you otherwise!

I love what Shana said above– think of this as the “stage 2″ portion of the whole HA shebang. I know it stinks (all too personally, unfortunately), but you are a strong woman and have this in the bag. No doubt :D

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60 Melanie October 23, 2012 at 7:51 pm

Sending SO much love your way!
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61 Ashley October 23, 2012 at 8:01 pm

hey! I am going through the same thing as you right now. While I do not have HA I have suffered for years. I got down to a really unhealthy weight and to gain back I decided to do the same thing, throw caution to the wind. Bring on the cupcakes and desserts. I am super stressed at the weight gain but know I need the extra weight, just in a healthier manner. I would love to direct message you about this b/c I really feel like talking is a great outlet and one I might need. You have never directly or in too much detail addressed your issues openly before and I respect that. I just was wondering if talking might help ya, via email. Hope you are doing well girl. you are such an inspiration.

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62 Kristen @ notsodomesticated October 23, 2012 at 8:07 pm

Just like everyone else is saying, I so admire your honesty. And while I completely understand your frustration, I am also SO happy for you that you regained what you were … ahem … missing. ;)

Personally, now that I’m pregnant, I’m really having to watch myself because I find that I much more likely to ‘treat’ myself, because I feel like I don’t have to worry about my waistline as much. But I know that I need to be making healthy choices for a) the sake of my baby (the main reason!) and b) to make my life easier post-baby!
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63 Jen October 23, 2012 at 8:16 pm

My prayers are with you. I know how you feel. I went through exactly the same thing about four years ago, when I decided to conceive our first baby (I am now nine months pregnant with our THIRD, if that gives you any hope).
I gained weight the “healthy” way (all protein shakes, Greek yogurt, peanut butter, whole grains and veggies, etc., as well as a drastic reduction in exercise — though I was still at the gym nearly every day), but I felt just as awful in the end as you do now. I gained 20 pounds in less than two months. I never went a moment not feeling full or bloated. My body image suffered mightily. But I was pregnant a month later, and actually gained relatively little weight while pregnant because my body was at a happy place. I resumed running while pregnant, and ran until the day I delivered my girl (and, subsequently, my boy, 17 months later).
I look back on how I gained the weight, and kind of wish I’d gained it on milkshakes and desserts. That would have been a LOT more fun. Bottom line? I think you’re going to feel the way that you do, regardless of what you’re eating. You might as well enjoy the food. ;)
This is all to let you know that I don’t think you’ve been gaining weight “

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64 Karla October 24, 2012 at 7:46 am

I love this Jen! I agree with you. We want to feel in control and when we are gaining, no matter what we are eating, the weight gain feels so out of control. Thanks for this inspiration!
Karla recently posted..Sometimes all I want to do is binge

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65 Tabs October 24, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Agreed, agreed, agreed! Well put ladies!!

Courtney, you are inspiration all by yourself but, man, so are your readers!!
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66 Courtney October 24, 2012 at 1:06 pm

That is such a great, interesting way to look at things. Thanks so much for sharing, Jen. It definitely helps put some things into perspective :)

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67 Purely Twins October 23, 2012 at 8:37 pm

thinking of you! I know gaining weight is hard, we have both have gained some too due to cutting way back on excising over the summer. Slowly getting back into and feeling good. You will too!

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68 Ashley October 23, 2012 at 9:04 pm

For what it’s worth I believe studies have linked higher fat dairy (including ice cream!) to increased fertility. So don’t be too hard on yourself! Maybe there’s a reason behind the cravings haha. I gained a few pounds before TTC and it did seem to help. Good luck with everything!

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69 Hollywood Healthy October 23, 2012 at 9:50 pm

Stay strong Courtney!

Back when I was in High school I developed an eating disorder. I never had my period in the first place but when I recovered I still hadnt gotten it. I became very frustrated and worried, I was 15, why hadn’t I gotten my period?! The doctors told me I was at a healthy weight It just took time. Finally when I turned 16 I got it.. I had never been more happy! Just remember it will happen and your doing this to be healthy!!
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70 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More October 23, 2012 at 9:53 pm

Your honesty and strength through all of this is absolutely incredible – keep doing what you need to do for you and your body. I’m glad to hear it’s working and helping you. :)
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71 Kate October 23, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Your baby is going to love your body no matter what :)

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72 Tabs October 24, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Man is that the truest statement ever or what!!
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73 Courtney October 24, 2012 at 1:05 pm

Thanks, ladies! That definitely is a true, wonderful statement :)

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74 Kristin October 23, 2012 at 10:30 pm

You we so brave to out yourself out there. I too suffered from HA a couple years ago. I ended up gaining about 15 lbs, as well, and it was so hard. I eventually got much more comfortable in my body after a few months. Guess what happened just a few months after hit my healthier weight….pregnancy!! My baby boy is 5 months old and now looking back, I’m so happy I gained the weight. You are doing great and look beautiful by the way!

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75 Em October 23, 2012 at 10:44 pm

I might be the millionth person to say this but thank you for being so candid about your struggles. Your sincerity and frankness (especially about topics others might sugarcoat) is part of why I respect your blog so much. I can definitely empathize with looking in the mirror and not recognizing myself after a rapid weight gain. It’s tough but just remember the grand scheme of things for your family (and that you have the rest of your life to lose the weight if you want!).
Em recently posted..Feelin’ the Pilates Burn

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76 Kristi @lifesprinkles.com October 23, 2012 at 10:51 pm

Don’t beat yourself up – we’ve all been there in one way or another! This is just another learning experience and you’ll come away from it a stronger person. I applaud your courage in sharing your vulnerabilities, it’s not an easy thing to do. Good luck!
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77 Tracy October 23, 2012 at 10:54 pm

Loved your vulnerability through this post. I’ve not been reading your blog long, but it is one of my recent favorites.

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78 Gina @ Health, Love, and Chocolate October 24, 2012 at 2:54 am

Your situation is definitely tough, but I love how you are taking control and making the decision to focus on health via thoughtful choices. I think your updates on how you are dealing with HA will really inspire others.
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79 Karleen October 24, 2012 at 3:10 am

Courtney, you are honestly sooo amazing! Although I didn’t have any HA symptoms, I definitely went through a phase last year of exercising way too hard for my body to handle and bingeing on and off with food. I think it threw my body a bit out of whack and I am ashamed of it. You only live once, so treat your one body with respect and love. I can only imagine it must be hard knowing you gained but you seriously do NOT look any different!! You’re still gorgeous as what every other one if your readers has said. I too have gained a little but from toning down my workouts and not making the healthiest of food choices(also there’s halloween candy everywhere right now!! Ugh) so I understand and need to follow your idea of eating healthier whole foods and less sweets. Please know you’re an inspiration to all of us and we LOVE you for being so honest and straightforward. You’re amazing!!

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80 Stacey October 24, 2012 at 6:48 am

Dear Courtney, I feel you girl and I know how BLAH we make ourselves feel sometimes. Please remember you are so strong! Get up every morning and read one little positive quote from like a Joel osteen book! Seriously! It’s awesome to have your period back I’m sure! I’m also suffering from AH. I recently enrolled in the fit mixer boot camp ( thanks to the rave reviews from Katie @ heAlthydivaeats.com and janetha!) I absolutely love it. The support is awesome. Candace the RD has also advised me to gain weight and says that our body will stop gaining when it knows its time and its healthy. O don’t sweat the 15 lbs. your body is smarter than you think According to Candace! You are so freaking beautiful! I love your blog N your style. You got this girl! We got this together! Healthy carbs and healthy fats will get us there! Xoxo

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81 heidi kokborg October 24, 2012 at 7:06 am

I know how you feel and I really hope you will feel better soon! Just remember that you are amazing and beautiful! :)
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82 Heather October 24, 2012 at 7:11 am

Courtney, you know I feel your pain! I’ve been going through the same thing, just feeing way too uncomfortable in my own skin b/c I “let myself go” a little too much. I started out modestly, incorporating healthy fats into each meal. Soon that turned into froyo every night and extra scoops of almond butter on everything. Flash forward a month and none of my clothes fit me anymore. I reached my breaking point about a week ago and I have to say that just by cutting out a few of the excessive snacks with very little change to my meals I already feel so much better. I also found eliminating mid week drinking (I would have a glass of wine or a beer here and there) has really helped too since that does nothing for us nutritionally anyway. I’m sure in as little as a few weeks you will start feeling like yourself again without having to go overboard. A little change goes a long way. As always, thinking of you!!

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83 Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction October 24, 2012 at 7:27 am

Glad to hear you body responded!!! Gaining wait sucks, I’ve been there and I’m still there but honestly you still look GREAT!!!!!!! And it’s your health that is important right now! Plus 15lbs is nothing!!! Just keep your head up and enjoy life! Imagine a life without chocolate and wine….now that’s a boring life! :-p
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84 Danielle@cleanfoodcreativefitness October 24, 2012 at 8:37 am

Thank you so much for sharing so much of your story and struggle with this! I know you can get back on track with healthier habits in no time and am pleased to her that you are regaining your health in the process of your weight gain! I know what a challenge this must all be for you but am so proud of you for sharing your story and determination to get healthy! You truly are an inspiration of both healthy and “Normal” eating! Best of luck!
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85 Meghan @ After the Ivy League October 24, 2012 at 9:19 am

I absolutely love your honesty with these posts. It’d be so easy to say you’re doing great, who cares about the weight gain when you’re doing it for the most important reason in the world, and to have an “above-it-all” approach. But the truth is, gaining weight is hard, physically and mentally! I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this, I really can’t imagine what it must feel like. But I’m sure you’ll find a balance and something that works for you. If it were me, I’d have overdone it on the sweets too. I would’ve seen it as the perfect excuse!
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86 Nicole October 24, 2012 at 9:20 am

Courtney, I’m sorry to hear about your bittersweet/devastating news. While I’m sure it was/is tough to deal with, I applaud your positive outlook throughout it all. Remember that several years from now, none of this will likely matter and it will be nothing more than a little speedbump in your life. The big man upstairs has a plan for you, and it will all fall into place exactly how and when it’s supposed to. Stay positive – you got this! :)

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87 Angela @ Health's Angel October 24, 2012 at 9:24 am

Thank you for being so open, Courtney. Your honesty is one of the many reasons why your blog is one of my favorites. I can completely relate about feeling “blah” about yourself. I really, really struggle with accepting my appearance and I get preoccupied about how I look a lot, even though I know we are all SO much more than our looks. I know how it is when others can go on and on telling you that you look fine, but you don’t believe it yourself. We’re all our own worst critics. With that said though, you are seriously beautiful and an inspiration to everyone to do what’s best for their bodies and stay healthy!
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88 Becka @ simplybecka October 24, 2012 at 10:20 am

I wish you all the best. I know that life gets hard sometimes, trust me I know, and one can get into a real slump. I hope you start to feel better and get back to your super healthy ways. We all fall off the health wagon sometimes, I mean who doesn’t love some junk food now and again to sooth the soul. I had to have a chocolate chip cookie a week ago, I was like beyond craving it and my soul wanted it too. ^_^ Best wishes always Courtney.
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89 Courtney F October 24, 2012 at 11:13 am

Ha been there! I had to gain weight for my body to function to get pregnant! It was an emotional roller coaster for sure and very hard. I say that to say I have a beautiful and healthy 2 year old and I don’t regret gaining those lbs for anything! I know where you are coming from! I appreciate your honesty through this roller coaster you are on too!!
Courtney F recently posted..Tuesday = fan-flippin-tastic

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90 cami October 24, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Courtney you are SO beautiful!!! I can’t even tell that you’ve gained any weight what so ever!..and I can’t begin to tell you how much I admire you for what you’ve gone through and what a great role model you are!! Thank you for being so honest about it all and just remember that everything happens for a reason :)

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91 Tabs October 24, 2012 at 12:53 pm

Keep up the good work lady! You feel bleh now but someday soon (relatively speaking) you will feel amazing!!

And man oh man, buying bigger jeans (even if it is the right thing to be doing and totally healthy) is SO hard to do!!! I know this for a fact. I hope you know that you are beautiful and a wonderful inspiration to so many women! Don’t forget that when you look in the mirror or try on new jeans. Please! :)
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92 Brittany @ Delights and Delectables October 24, 2012 at 2:18 pm

I’m so behind on my blog reading!! I’m so glad things are looking up for you in the HA department. I know it is easy to throw everything to the wind and just say… I’m going to eat whatever I want! We need to chat soon… I’ll e-mail you! :) Love to you girl!
Brittany @ Delights and Delectables recently posted..WIAW #22 I Made a Treat

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93 Christine October 24, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Courtney – one of the reasons I read your blog is because it is honest and REAL.

You look beautiful! Thinking of you & sending positive thoughts your way. :)

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94 Jillian @ Sprinkle Massacre October 24, 2012 at 6:07 pm

I’m so happy to hear that your HA issue is getting better! I definitely understand how you feel after getting off track with your meals, but at least you recognized it and are taking action. You’ll feel better in no time! The important thing is the return of a dear friend, ‘Flo’ – and saying that takes me back to high school. haha!
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95 Nicole October 24, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Thank you for sharing so much with us. It’s always frustrating to see the scale go up – no matter if it’s necessary or not. You have done so much in telling your story and sharing your goals with us. We’re all here in this journey with you…we got your back!

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96 Connie @ Livin' Lean October 24, 2012 at 9:04 pm

I really want to tell you not to be too hard on yourself and everything will be okay (which it will be!), but I know that if I were in your position, I would probably feel the same way too. The great thing about you is that you’re very honest with yourself and your readers and can turn negative situations into positives. I’m glad you are still keeping your health as your main priority, while trying to incorporate more healthy foods into your diet. After all, we’re all human, and I think you’re setting a great example for others out there who may be experiencing similar problems. I’m sure after a few days of decreasing sweets and whatnot, you’ll already feel much better! Just keep your chin up, and know how far you’ve come from that first HA post!
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97 Brittney October 24, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Just want to say thank you for sharing all of this info with your readers, I have been dealing with the same thing for the last 2 years. I assumed it was from too much training because I am healthy in every other way, but reading about your diagnosis I felt like maybe I would try and cut back on training as well and let my body level out a bit.

It’s worked for me too! I’m so glad that you have had results and that your body is healthy. Don’t be hard on yourself for drinking beer and eating brownies, you are so beautiful and I know it’s difficult to gain a little weight but nobody can notice but you. We are our toughest critics at all times.

Thanks again!

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98 Courtney October 25, 2012 at 8:45 am

That’s fantastic news, Brittney! Congrats to you – I’m so, so glad you decided to make the changes that your body needed. :)

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99 Bek @ Crave October 25, 2012 at 2:24 am

Hmmm, I don’t know but what you’re saying there sounds like you’re being a bit judgemental on the treats- I know we don’t know/see the whole picture, but I think it’s okay to indulge in ice-cream nightly? Sorta makes me sad that you would think that’s not okay, or that someone could then think it’s not okay for them to have a daily treat.
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100 Courtney October 25, 2012 at 8:36 am

Ohhh, don’t get me wrong, Bek! I am a huge advocate for treats and would never, ever recommend cutting them out (which is why I mentioned in the post that they won’t be going away!). I also think a nightly indulgence would be fine…if it were done in moderation. Let me tell ya…my nightly treats were definitely not in moderation. And for me, the more I have, the more I want, and it’s a vicious cycle where just a little is never enough. For me, that’s not healthy, and it just leaves me feeling yuck, so I’m just trying to get back to that point where a little IS enough (not a whole darn pint of ice cream!), if that makes sense? :)

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101 Min October 25, 2012 at 6:11 am

Courtney..let me just say that I said “amen” to every thing you said right here.. I’m right there with ya! Praise the Lord that our bodies have responded..but gaining the weight and embracing the new “curves”? not so much. Although I may have looked anorexia, I still find myself looking at old pictures and thinking, “man! I looked so much prettier back then.” And then I get this urge to run for hours an end. However, like you said in one of your earlier posts, this is only temporary. My husband encourages and comforts me by telling me that after we have our lil’ one, I can become a body builder if I wanted to hehe. I’m sure I won’t go that far, but I can’t wait till that day when I can get my heart pumping again!
I’m praying for you! Stay strong, my beautiful!

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102 Courtney October 25, 2012 at 8:38 am

Thanks, Min! The same goes for you, too :)

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103 Daybelis October 25, 2012 at 7:38 am

Wow what a great post love. I always read your blog but with college it’s hard to always comment. I just had to comment on this one because it brought tears to my eyes. As a recovered anorexic I know how hard it is to accept our new bodies after recovery. I thought having curves was disgusting, I thought having a booty was nasty(wtf). Now I love my body, and understand that we as women need fat to be able to survive, it’s what makes us superior to men too lol. I think you are beautiful + 15 lbs ( which aren’t noticeable at all). don’t let those negative thoughts get to yu thus your health is way more important than fitting into skinny jeans:) xoxoxo

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104 Becki (@Fight4Wellness) October 26, 2012 at 10:37 am

It’s good to read this update because I feel like sometimes people think the healthy living blogger world is all sunshine and daisies (which it obviously is not because we’re all human). I’m so glad that your body is responding to the weight gain in a way that you need, but I also totally get where you’re coming from with being upset about the gain as well because of how it came about.

I’m pretty sure I ate my weight in cheese last night after I found myself starving from the gym. Needless to say, I don’t feel great about it today. I’m glad I put off reading this post until today because it was just what I needed to remind myself that no matter what our goals, we all struggle sometimes and that’s totally OK so long as we get back on track.

I was also so happy to read that getting back on track for you does not mean cutting out “treats” entirely. We all deserve a pick-me-up when we want it, and that means beer too! :-)
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105 Becca January 11, 2013 at 9:57 pm

Congratulations on getting things ‘flowing’ again! It is bittersweet, right? Your body starts working again, but you feel ‘off’ and crummy due to the weight gain. It’s a tough battle, but you’re doing great!

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