Overcoming My Fear of Being a Couch Potato

I just realized that the past three photos on my Instagram all include peanut butter, banana, and carbs.

Well, anyone who goes to my profile will immediately know the top three foods that sustain me. Truly, there is rarely a breakfast of mine that does not include all three of those things: peanut butter, banana, and carbs.

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Friday morning breakfast: Greek yogurt with cinnamon, nutmeg, chia seeds, banana, berry banana muffin, and peanut butter

You know how carrots + onions + celery = mirepoix, and celery + onions + bell peppers = “The Holy Trinity” in Cajun cooking? Well I hereby proclaim that peanut butter + banana + carbs = The Breakfast Trifecta.

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Saturday morning breakfast: mango banana overnight oats

I’ve been watching the CrossFit Games this weekend, and I have nothing to say but “WOW”. I could actually say “ouch” because I’d probably be out of commission for a week (or dead) after just one of the thirteen grueling events those athletes completed.

While I was watching the fittest people on Earth doing their thing, I was eating dessert and being a couch potato.

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Friday night’s sweet treat was Cookie and Kate’s vegan banana nut scones that I un-veganized with 2% milk, butter and honey. I think I added too much milk, resulting in more of a cookie-cake texture, but they were still fantastic topped with peanut butter and almost-burnt pecans(<— SO TASTY.)

Back to this whole couch potato situation. Now, I still generally do not like sitting for long periods of time because my butt starts hurting or I get very antsy.

That being said, up until very recently, I would almost never let myself just veg out on the couch for a night, even if I really wanted to just kick my feet up and relax. I would try to get up and do some squats, push-ups, burpees— all to “stay active.” No matter how much activity and exercise I had done during the day, I just forced myself to keep moving. That’s what healthy people do, right?

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There was definitely an underlying, insanely irrational fear that being horizontal on the couch for a couple hours would somehow make all my food turn into fat or that I would get out of shape.

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Crazy stuff happens in my brain sometimes.

(All the time.)

Seriously though, literally giving my body REST— not just active rest— has done me more good than making sure I’m moving and grooving at all times. I have overcome my fear of being a couch potato.

Moving on to dessert numero dos. Saturday night’s CrossFit Games grub of choice was vanilla ice cream with mangoes, cinnamon, nutmeg, and toasted pecans.

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New favorite thing!!! This combination blew me away.

I also tried some of this Righteously Raw dark chocolate that I won from Jessie’s birthday giveaway.

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I ate that little piece on the top right. I’m sure dark chocolate lovers would very much enjoy Righteously Raw chocolate, but speaking as someone who doesn’t like chocolate that much in the first place… EW.

How do people like dark chocolate??? It’s like chocolate that you would give to someone for April Fools’ Day. “Jokes on you! It’s dark chocolate, not tasty milk chocolate!”

I guess you could say it was not smart of me to enter a giveaway for dark chocolate, but I thought I’d give it a try. Ya never know if you might like something you thought you hated, but this time, I still hated it. Don’t worry though, I’ll be sharing these!

Okay, I’ll just finish up this long post with some other scenes from the weekend.

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grilled pesto chicken for Saturday night dinner

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Amanda’s chunky monkey Greek yogurt pancakes for Sunday morning//HOLY MOLY DELICIOUS

Dad and I went to (yet another) local Italian festival yesterday, but this one had even more food and fun!

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cups of mini meatballs // Dad’s cacciatore meatballs and my caprese meatballs

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sun gear: sunglasses + cowboy hat

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pistachio and hazelnut gelato

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the best batch of strawberries we’ve ever bought

Food photo dump complete.

Hope that you all had a fabulous weekend and you have a kick-butt week ahead! But don’t forget to kick your feet up every once in a while.

So tell me:

Are you okay with being a couch potato sometimes?

Which three foods do you always eat together? Bread, avocado, and eggs is the Lunch Trifecta.

What is the best thing you ate this weekend?

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40 thoughts on “Overcoming My Fear of Being a Couch Potato

  1. Oh yes, how I can relate. Vegging around can be really hard – or at least for those of us who had/have EDs, I guess. I’ve been noticing it a lot more recently being around others than when I’m on my own. Yesterday, I went for a walk after breakfast and later on a short bike ride with my mum, still feeling antsy afterwards. Yet my sister who had lots of work to do sat on her Mac pretty much all day, still eating a good amount of food. I’m learning to relax about movement but at least was able to sit through a movie with my family a few nights ago – after being active throughout the day. But yes, I logically know nothing bad will happen from not moving much for a day – it’s just not easy to put this into practice.
    On another note: that picture of you and your dad is cute.

    • The feeling that we need to be moving all the time can definitely become ingrained in our minds and bodies throughout the course of an eating disorder, but just as it took time to get to that point, it takes time to break out of that anxiety. Keep it up, girl! ♥

  2. All hail the breakfast trifecta! You milady, are a bloomin’ genius.because lookit those pancakes *removes cowgirl hat in a token of respect* !! Eeee I made Amanda’s chuncky monkey ones too this weekend (the same evening), but oh my jeepers they didn’t look half pretty; pancake-making skills below par. At least the deliciousness made me very happy 🙂 .
    Accompanying my Dad on errands today, I had him stop for some gelato after wayyy too long – death by chocolate and salted caramel. Bugger was it gooooood!

  3. That’s it: I’m totally trying Amanda’s pancakes. They look unbelievable. And I feel ya…I wa sout with friends at a bar on Friday night eating BBQ chicken tenders and drinking beer, watching the CrossFit games. I didn’t hate it.

  4. Getting married helped me to overcome my couch potato fears, my husband loves to watch Netflix! We end every night watching it and I don’t feel bad about it one bit. Three foods I’ve been eating together lately are cornflakes, kefir, and unsweetened shredded coconut for late night snacks. It’s a delicious combination!

  5. I’m always so active, that whenever I get down time I like to be as lazy as possible. I always feel it’s more than deserved, especially since it’s a rest day, anyway.

    And I’m always iffy about Crossfit. They make be fit, but they do it in such an unhealthy, dangerous way that it’s scary. Many often don’t learn proper techniques/forms, and they get hurt easily. But to each his own, I guess.

    I’m thinking of creating a weekly food post or something like this, as well. I always feel so inspired seeing your pictures!

    latest motivation @ https://activelygemma.com/blog

  6. Unfortunately, becoming a couch potato is one of my biggest fears – one that I hope to overcome soon. I get agitated so easily, so relaxing is never easy for me. It’s just another challenge I have to conquer, I suppose!
    The three foods I always eat together are cereal, berries, and granola. (Basically carbs, carbs, and carbs.) As for this past weekend, the best thing I ate was the sweetest cantaloupe in the entire universe of fruit. I love cantaloupe, but this took my love for cantaloupe on a whole new level.

    • Fully relaxing for an extended period of time has been one of my biggest fears as well, but I wholeheartedly believe that you can kick it to the curb! Your mind and body will appreciate it more and more, slowly but surely.
      Hey, carbs + carbs + carbs = happiness.

  7. I actually have never had a problem being a couch potato but I used to just do it and feel guilty the whole time. Now I do it and love every second lol. I actually wasn’t just a couch potato last night, but rather for the entire day yesterday. I was in bed or the couch all day except for the 2 hours I was sitting in a movie theater. And now I feel amazing today 🙂 Also, you and your dad are adorable. I want to go to an Italian food festival!

  8. I don’t think it’s weird that you have this fear. I have the same one. You read all of this stuff about how terrible sitting is for the human body but I need to consider how it’s also bad to never rest! Happy balance is what I need!

  9. I used/still do to have the same problem. Not only that, I could not get my mind to relax and would start thinking of a bajiillion other things that I could be doing. Now it will take me a good 20 minutes or so to chill out and after that I’m in total couch potato mode💆🏼😉

    Have a great Monday pal😘

  10. I always have a problem with sitting! I try very hard to make sure I sit and relax in the evenings. I struggle with pacing around and I’m going back to school in the fall, so I guess I gotta get ready to sit for extended periods of time. I get so antsy and I feel so lazy and gluttonous, but I try to remind myself that it’s normal as humans to relax. It’s actually necessary, because otherwise, I would be crazier than I already am.
    As for three foods, I love to eat yogurt, strawberries, and Nutella; aka, the best 3 foods out there!

  11. Ahh, I love that you went to an Italian festival, even if just for the gelato! And I happen to LOVE dark chocolate because it’s so rich and I don’t really like things that taste sugary (i.e. most candy). But it was definitely an acquired taste for me, like coffee (although I try not to let myself drink coffee since it makes me superrrr jittery.)

  12. Definitely becoming better at accept being a couch potato. =) But really, it is sometimes the only place I say to myself ‘rest’, so it is almost necessary to my health. CrossFit Games = so inspiring. I would have died, too! We had an amazing homemade pasta salad at my boyfriend’s parents’ last night! Because when it is 80*F+ with #allthehumidity, you snatch up the offer for free dinner. She made an avocado-based dressing for it – holy amazing. It was such an amazing meal with just that, but add on Grandma’s homemade butterhorn rolls, fresh watermelon with lemon squeezed on it and smoothie parfaits for dessert? I could have eaten all night!

  13. I totally resonate with the feeling of not being able to just ‘chill out’ on the couch and not move. It seems like everywhere you go yo hear how sitting is the new smoking and that we need to be trying to move as much as we can. And while yes, sitting for for 12 hours a day may not be the best for one’s physiology, it is a totally different discussion from not being able to enjoy a T.V show or a good book while laying on the couch. I used to never allow myself to do anything that involved sitting for long periods. Movies and T.V where out of the picture… I barely even read books. Now I can easily just flop on the couch and relax, not only because my body needs it, but also because I WANT to. So well said Alison!

    • Exactly, Niki! It can be hard to fight the (good) messages about sitting less and moving more when we (ED recoverers) are trying to give our bodies rest and recovery. But like you said, you know when your body wants to rest, and it slowly becomes easier to LISTEN!

  14. This was my reaction to your Breakfast Trifecta declaration:
    http://giphy.com/gifs/slow-clap-dOJt6XZlQw8qQ

    Being a couch potato is good for the soul, sometimes. If I ever find myself feeling “guilty” for “being lazy” I remind myself that in no way is it going to negatively impact my overall fitness – just like how doing one workout isn’t going to get you into shape and help you lose excess weight.

    On Saturday, I did absolutely NOTHING. It was glorious. I think I was only on my feet for two hours total – walking around at the farmers market. Other than that, I was laying in bed reading, laying in bed napping, sitting at the table eating and laying on the couch watching a movie.
    The extra rest made me an animal in the gym the next day. (Omg I am so sore today. Send help)

  15. Peanut butter + bananas + carbs… yep I could happily live off of those three things. I really could. Alison, I commend you on your embracement of the couch potato lifestyle. It goes against every health trend out there, but ultimately, you are doing the right thing. That says so much about your inner strength, and I am beaming with the largest smile as I read this. I bet this has not been easy in the slightest, but you are making do with what you have, and it is wonderful to watch you grow.

    I LOVE dark chocolate. The more bitter… the better. I guess I am just a strange one because I HATE milk or white chocolate. Dark chocolate all the way for me!

  16. Wow. Yes. Peanut butter and banana and other carbs would have to be some of my FAVORITE foods. ;-D I get teased about my love for peanut butter so much. And, Alison, you not only made me smile with this post, but I felt like you got right to the heart of one of my biggest fears, that I am still overcoming, by God’s grace. I used to HATE sitting for any period longer than 15 minutes. Now it’s become easier, but it still is difficult just stopping, watching a movie, or especially sitting down in the middle of the day. It’s much easier at night, but I just have to really mentally slow myself down, and remind myself, ‘You sat in the car for hours of road trips. You’ve gone to see movies and sat for hours. And it never hurt you.’ It really is such a small irrational fear of mine.

  17. Pingback: No Rest for the Wicked? | Adventures & Arm Balances

  18. First of all, everything you made looked so delicious! I have to admit that when I was looking through your desserts, I was thinking, “Those look so good, but she needs a bit more chocolate in there!” Then come to find out you hate chocolate. Oh. I am so sorry! What is that like? I love chocolate, and the darker the better. (I actually only like the Pounds Plus milk chocolate from TJ’s; otherwise it’s too sweet for me. In other words, I’m a snob. 😛 ) Yep, I’m ok with being a couch potato, because I hate exercising, and relaxing is one of my favorite activities. But that said, I totally understand not being comfortable with it. I think I could have forced myself down that road if I hadn’t caught myself before I got there! Thanks for the reminder!

    • Not liking chocolate is… fine I guess! I’m THAT person who would rather find raisins in her cookies than chocolate chips. I know, call the cops. My friends hate me for that, haha. I do still like it in some forms though! Brownies, some cakes, Reese’s, cookies and cream, Thin Mints… It depends!

  19. I have a difficult time with being still. It is something I so dearly need to work on. I feel I need to be up or moving all of time. Rationally, that is totally and utterly absurd. I commend you on posting about this. It is essential for bodies to not be in motional all of the time. You inspire me, Alison, day in and day out ❤
    I also had gelato this weekend! 'Twas delicious!
    Chocolate is where you and I differ my friend. I love dark chocolate and don't care for milk or white. If I ever get a box of chocolates I know exactly who I am giving the non-dark chocolate treats to 😉

    • It feels silly and frustrating to keep going against rationality, but that’s what disorders do, and we have to keep fighting feelings and do what we KNOW is right. It’s hard for everyone, so you’re not alone, Alison!
      YAY for gelato!! And I wish you could come have some of this dark chocolate! You’d probably love it 🙂

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