How My Life Has Changed 8 Months After Reading Skinny Bitch

How My Life Has Changed 8 Months After Reading Skinny Bitch

It’s not easy changing your diet, but definitely worth it

On May 6th of 2016, I decided to go vegetarian. I had tried to a couple of weeks prior but ended up craving some chicken nuggets or something like that. But after I read the book Skinny Bitch, I can actually say it changed my life, eight months later. After having read that book by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin, I couldn't bring myself to eat meat or drink soda or cow milk from that day on. Here is why that purchase of less than 15 dollars was so worth it.

The book goes into detail of how the food you eat is making you “fat” and the hidden addictions and health consequences, and the authors give it to you straight up. The vulgar language first off made me laugh, but it actually put things into perspective. The authors dedicated a whole chapter to exposing sugar and how it is enslaving Americans, and they bluntly titled it Sugar is the Devil. Then comes the truth about what they inject cows with so that milk can be produced is so unnatural and inhumane. I won't give anything away, but it kind of scared me for the week following.

I’ll admit, some of the passages in the book were successful in scaring you into making the right choices for a few days, but you have to have an amazing amount of self-control to actually cut out sugar and carbs religiously every day. That doesn't lessen the effect that other parts of the book had on me, especially the section that goes into the treatment of animals. The chickens, cows, and pigs we consume are literally born to die so that we can eat them. The conditions of the living, breathing animals with beating hearts and feelings were described as so horrendous that I could not imagine eating meat from that day on. And since May 6th I have not, and I honestly believe I never will again in my life.

That is not to say I am better than you because I chose to be a vegetarian, it's just my personal preference. I am saying that if you want to look better physically and feel better physically, mentally, and just overall a better person than you were before, read the book. Since cutting out meat, soda, and cow milk, I have lost weight, my acne has disappeared, I don't feel guilty after eating meals, I’m almost never bloated, and I don't feel as tired and sluggish as I used to before I made the changes. That is just some of the results I can remember off the top of my head, and it will be different for everyone. Overall, the book is going to change the way you think about food. Your life will change, I can guarantee that.

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I Weigh Over 200 Lbs And You Can Catch Me In A Bikini This Summer

There is no magic number that determines who can wear a bikini and who cannot.

It is about February every year when I realize that bikini season is approaching. I know a lot of people who feel this way, too. In pursuit of the perfect "summer body," more meals are prepped and more time is spent in the gym. Obviously, making healthier choices is a good thing! But here is a reminder that you do not have to have a flat stomach and abs to rock a bikini.

Since my first semester of college, I've weighed over 200 pounds. Sometimes way more, sometimes only a few pounds more, but I have not seen a weight starting with the number "1" since the beginning of my freshman year of college.

My weight has fluctuated, my health has fluctuated, and unfortunately, my confidence has fluctuated. But no matter what, I haven't allowed myself to give up wearing the things I want to wear to please the eyes of society. And you shouldn't, either.

I weigh over 200lbs in both of these photos. To me, (and probably to you), one photo looks better than the other one. But what remains the same is, regardless, I still chose to wear the bathing suit that made me feel beautiful, and I'm still smiling in both photos. Nobody has the right to tell you what you can and can't wear because of the way you look.

There is no magic number that equates to health. In the second photo (and the cover photo), I still weigh over 200 lbs. But I hit the gym daily, ate all around healthier and noticed differences not only on the scale but in my mood, my heart health, my skin and so many other areas. You are not unhealthy because you weigh over 200 lbs and you are not healthy because you weigh 125. And, you are not confined to certain clothing items because of it, either.

This summer, after gaining quite a bit of weight back during the second semester of my senior year, I look somewhere between those two photos. I am disappointed in myself, but ultimately still love my body and I'm proud of the motivation I have to get to where I want to be while having the confidence to still love myself where I am.

And if you think just because I look a little chubby that I won't be rocking a bikini this summer, you're out of your mind.

If YOU feel confident, and if YOU feel beautiful, don't mind what anybody else says. Rock that bikini and feel amazing doing it.

Cover Image Credit: Sara Petty

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A Little Self Care Never Hurt Nobody

It may be summer, but don't forget to take care of yourself.

During spring break this past semester, I already knew that my finals week was going to be very stressful. Thus, I made the decision to write my articles for Odyssey ahead of time. Luckily or perhaps unfortunately for me so much had happened in my life leading up to spring break that I had a lot of material to base my articles on. However, with saying that, as I write this article right now, it has been a solid month and a half since I have sat down to write an article.

To be honest, it feels really nice to come back to my laptop and type away how I have been feeling lately. For one, the end of my semester was hectic, to say the least. It consisted of finishing up my exams, driving back and forth from the city to campus in order to attend both my sister’s and a lot of my friend’s graduation and coming to terms with what a crazy semester and school year it has been.

After finishing my sophomore year, I feel like I have gotten to know myself in so many new ways. So much of our lives is people telling us that we still have so much to learn and so I am grateful for this past school year for giving to me the challenges and joys that it did. I feel like I know myself a lot better now and there is a great sense of comfort that comes with this feeling.

With that said, something that I learned quite recently and would like to take the time to highlight is listening and caring for myself. After school ended and I watched my friends walk across the stage and receive their diplomas, I thought that I would be incredibly overjoyed for them and for myself. However, for a couple days after graduation, I was really sad and didn’t want to do anything. I literally laid in bed for two days just thinking to myself why was I feeling this way.

This is when listening to myself came in. Instead of being hard on myself for lying in bed for two days and not doing anything but watch YouTube videos, I did some self-reflection. I paused and sincerely asked myself why I was feeling so down. I came up with a couple answers.

One, my boyfriend had graduated and knowing that I wasn’t going to see him on campus every day made me want to sit on my bed and cry.

Secondly, my grandparents were town and seeing that I do not have the best relationship with them, hiding out in my room seemed to be my solution to avoiding them.

Thirdly, I knew that my depression-like symptoms may stem from my PMS. Last but certainly not least, I knew that my body was reacting this way because I was simply exhausted. As mentioned before, the ending to my semester was incredibly chaotic and I think this was my body and mind’s way of telling me that I need to relax.

This brings me to taking care of myself.

See, once you have self-reflected and understood why you are feeling the way that you are, you have to do something about it. For me, that meant taking a couple of days to truly relax and recover. It also meant encouraging myself to get up and do things when I knew I was ready to. Even when I was feeling a little better, I still took it easy. I danced a little bit, put on a face mask, got a haircut and overall had a relaxing day.

Being able to listen to my body and take care of myself is something that I am very happy I learned this semester. It honestly is a lot harder than people make it seem because so often we jump to conclusions, even if it is about ourselves.

Cover Image Credit: Nidhi Singh

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