Aug 3, 2010

is comparing yourself to others a good thing?

hey hey buddies. it's tuesday, jess!

i had a bombtastic day today. i acted like a blob all morning, read a little, went out to lunch with christie from honoring health (again! love her!), and knocked out a killer strength training workout.

yep. all in a days work :)

just a quick thought for you all tonight... i was reading some older posts from two awesome blogs and came across posts about how many calories they consume.

usually, i'm not really into other people's diets, but that day it struck a chord with me. i guess i was blown away by how active these girls are, and how little calories they actually ate (compared to me).

my first reaction was intrigue. they are both so healthy, and their diets really seem flawless! i'm amazed at their endless creativity and dedication to health.

... but then, i started internalizing. you know, comparing myself.

i started thinking about how beautiful and active these girls are, and how i move so much less, but eat so much more! it blew my mind.

i wouldn't say it made me uncomfortable, but i definitely had a few moments of uncertainty. how could this be? am i eating the right amount? am i overeating? 

i quickly came to a shocking conclusion: i am not either of them.

brilliant, i know. the important fact i lost sight of was that we are all unique. what's good for me may not be good for you, or anyone else for that matter. we are individuals, and we require different things to feel and look our best.

i know what i normally eat, and if i was to eat less, i would definitely lose weight that i don't want to lose. if someone else ate like me, however, they might gain or lose weight. or just feel like crap. or be bored. or not think i have very good tastes in snacks. whatever.

it was eye-opening, to say the least. i realized even when i think that i've conquered a weak area, i can always be taken off guard! i'm not immune to insecurity, that's for sure.

so i decided to do my own "day of food" post.

this is not meant to encourage more comparison. please, don't look at me as the standard. i'm quite the opposite, actually.

it's meant to be a declaration of self-acceptance: i am rebekah. this is what i eat, and i'm totally ok with that.

let's get started, shall we?

5:05am - must. drink. water. now.

5:31am - oatmeal time! oatmeal time! oatmeal time!

in the mix: chocolate chia tahini oats. yum.

6:00am - decaf coffee (and assume i am pounding water the rest of the day from here out)

9:20am - post-run recover smoothie (recycled picture, i ate too quick!)

in the mix: hemp protein, hemp milk, banana, strawberries, blueberries, + spinach

p.s. - you can tell it's finally daylight! lol.

11:40am - leftover amaranth savory pancakes

mix it up! try substituting leftover cooked grains in your next pancake recipe. blend them up a bit in the food processor first if you like a smoother texture.

+ snow peas and copious amounts of (unpictured) carrots

intermission: i just had to show you guys this shelf on our freezer.

i love my little brother! he's 16... can you tell?

1:30pm - gala apple + almonds + rooibos tea

second intermission: look at my mom's cute plants!

2:06pm - second snack. because apparently the first one wasn't enough.

(on a book up for review - coming soon!)

4:07pm - dinner, part one.

mom's homemade whole wheat bread + homemade hummus

5:15pm - leftover baked potato + homemade 3-bean chili

... where are my leafy greens today???

taa-daa! y'all sleepin' yet?

who cares what everyone else does? you are really quite lovely just how you are.

i want you to look at your body and what you eat, and promise not to judge yourselves, either. deal?


  1. hehe, i lol'd so many times throughout this. that sounds mean, but i promise it wasn't at you - first the "it's tuesday, jess!" thing had me, and then I stared at the ice cream photo wide eyed for a good minute. Wow, the kid likes his ice cream! Hey, a flavor for every mood, right? I don't think we'd have room in our freezer :P
    Your baked potato with chili is making me want a baked potato with bean chili. And I've fallen in the comparison trap too - i'm farrr less athletic than a lot of bloggers I read, and yet it seems I eat as much if not more than them. But you're right - it doesn't matter! We're all different - which is what is so great :)

  2. Good for you hun! It's taken me many years, but I can say that I am at a point now where I rarely compare myself to others. And you know what? I am SO much happier now than I used to be.

  3. comparing calories is the worst for me, im always shocked at how many variables there are between different people. i cant een count how many times ive felt bad because i ate more or less than someone and i know its never a good reason to get mad over numbers.

    you goota do you and what works for you, clearly its part of the reason why ur so happy and why u can have 'bombastic' days like today hehe <3

  4. I know that's its never a good thing for me. We can only be ourselves.

  5. Ahh comparing calories is a terrible thing!!

    I know I eat more than the average person, and im totally okay with that. i look at is as a blessing!

    This blog world is VERY ABNORMAL! Active women, not enough food, too much obsessiveness with "pure food", too little branching out. thats my opinion. when i learned that real life isnt really like that.. it helped so much!

  6. Aww you're a sweetie. You always make me feel so happy inside. Love your eats, girl! And shoot, counting calories? Just eat good stuff, there's no need to do math every time you take a bite of food.

    God bless you friend!

  7. Deal! If we compare outselves, then how are we all individually special? You nailed it- thank you.

    And your chili looks awesome. I'm a meat eater, but one thing I really do love it vegetarian chili- can I get your recipe? And for the bread too, it looks really hearty and good!

    You're awesome Rebekah, talk to you soon!

  8. Deal, Rebekah!
    I can't, and should not compare my eating to any other. My body needs what it needs, and unlike my brain, it does not give a s**t about comparison. It only knows its own needs and preferences. And honestly, that is what my mind should focus on and honour.

    I went through a tense period of comparing my food to what other recoverers ate - not wise. Because what happens when I see some people eat youghurt etc with 0% fat? It sure makes it harder to enjoy my full-fat buddies!
    So, comparison is of no use when it comes to nutrition. We are born unique, and that is to be respected and protected.

    Big hug, you are a blessing to this world!

  9. i've noticed also when women post their calories, which tend to be so few, and also how active they are!
    i'm like, "i'd be a walking zombie if i ate so few calories!"
    yeah, everyone's different and there are a lot of variables. i can't imagine being as active as some are and eating so little can be good in the long run though.
    thanks for being a great blogger and prayer-warrior Rebekah:)

  10. That's why I don't post all my meals and I would NEVER include a calorie count. Mostly because I don't count my calories. I just don't think it's healthy to post all that info you know?

  11. I'm totally guilty of comparison! I don't even realize I'm doing it! This post was a good reminder to stop the comparisons!

    Also, your freezer made me laugh :) My brother is 23, and he STILL loves ice cream like that!

  12. Great post! The simplest truths are often the best. I just don't count calories, partly because it's easy to get obsessive and partly because I don't think all calories are equal- the body uses some calories different to others. And, like you said, everyone's different. Anyway! I love that you recorded what you eat in the day. I'm always snacking so it'd take up so much time to photograph everything! x

  13. I find that I sometimes compare myself to other bloggers too. I'm not as active right now because I am on summer where I don't have a membership to a work out facility, and I'm working 7AM to 7PM. I often compare myself to these people but then I realize: I eat very cleanly, I still exercise at home and I'm constantly moving throughout the day. Why compare myself? I'm doing great!

  14. I agree I sometimes analyze what some bloggers eat and compare, and say how come I can't eat that much/little....etc. But everyone is different, some people have higher metabolisms than others. You eat like me little small meals throughout the day!! That chili+potato sounds delish....I was thinking of making baked beans tonight and this tempted me to actually do it, with some spagh squash maybe and kale..maybe some millet cornbread! I eat alot of veggies espec in my daily salads :) I love seeing how different bloggers eat, in healthy ways

  15. Hey Rebekah,
    I hope you don't take offense to this, because I mean it as a compliment. After finishing your post, I looked back to where you talked about 2 other bloggers whose diets are "flawless", but it looks like yours is completely flawless as well. I guess I'm just confused as to where you don't see your diet as amazing - because I think it is! Zero processed foods, zero white flour, zero added sugar, etc. I envy you girl!

    Okay I retract that last statement about 50 percent. I do envy your healthy ways and the healthy ways of the food blogs I follow. But taking your advice, I can't compare myself because those diets wouldn't work 100% for me. For my health I guess I just need the option of sushi with brown rice, not 100% organic, cereal instead of oats blah blah blah blah

    Anyways sorry for the ramble, but I love your blog and just wanted to say your diet is the picture of health! Don't sell yourself short! If you aren't healthy, then what does that make me hahha?

    Have a great day!

  16. thank you everybody! you are too sweet.

    and anon - thank you as well for the awesome compliment! i wasn't comparing my diet as far as health-wise to their diets, but more like quantity wise. as someone who used to struggle with binging/restricting, every once in a while these thoughts do float up to the surface.

    thank you for your concern!!!


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