When You Have The Flu But Still Have An Eating Disorder


My eating disorder amazes me.

I legit have the Flu people- THE FLU….yet yesterday at around 6pm I still thought as I rode the bus home “Am I sick enough yet to miss a work out?”

Inevitably, mother nature answered for me. In the 45 minutes it took me to ride the bus, get home and eat dinner (which my taste buds were already rejecting) I could feel the fever flame through me.

Ugh, fine- I thought, feeling the weakness fever brings. GUESS I CAN’T WORK OUT.

If felt like failure.

Huddled in my bed last night- teeth chattering- running a 102.3 fever and crying at Undercover Boss (because apparently fever makes me HIGHLY emotional)… I find I still have that little voice in my ear.

Feelin’ Like.

It’s embarrassing to even write about because it feels so ridiculous- but I’d be straight up bullshitting if I didn’t admit that every time I get sick- no matter if it’s Flu or food poisoning or Strep Throat- I have the voice that lurks in my head singing “maybe you’ll lose some weeeeeeiiiiightttttt… and it won’t even be your fault!”

Funny that I JUST wrote about my recovery friend who got the Flu

At the end of the day, I realize I’m just like this person. But with food.

My throat hurt this morning so I didn’t eat. My fever surged back to 101.2 this afternoon so I laid in my bed and told my Mom I was too weak to eat anything.

Truth? I was starving.

Flu doesn’t halt my entire appetite. It’s not the stomach flu (which I’m sure in some weird way I was hoping it would be). It’s all sinus and respiratory.

Around 2pm (so two hours ago) I finally had a smoothie delivered to me with boosters and flu fighters and all that supplement shiz that I never use, and I drank half of it and now don’t want to go to the Doctor later today because I don’t want to step on the scale.

Why? Because the smoothie has orange SHERBERT in it and fruit sugars.


To add to that, somehow even as I sit here drowning in sweat while my fever breaks, I still can’t stop the thought from crossing my mind:

“You are just sitting around doing jack shit. Your body isn’t burning ANY calories. In fact, it’s just gaining more. You’re being lazy. You’re feeling a bit better now that you don’t have fever so maybe you should go work out for 30 minutes…”

I’m not actually going to go work out because quite frankly the thought of suffering that 20-degree weather to get to the gym makes my body want to curl up into a ball.

But, I am admitting that the desire is definitely there.

In the past, who knows? I probably would’ve. I would’ve justified it by being like “Oh, just sit on the elliptical for 30 minutes and that’s BARELY even a work out…”

It would be lies though. I’d work out for an hour because I couldn’t get off any machine until I reached certain calorie goals, and inevitably I’d stay sick for days longer than necessary.

Ultimately it’s just interesting to me, even as I sit here feeling the desire to go work out, the way eating disorders work themselves into EVERY part of your life.

There’s not one thing I can do- STILL- 2 YEARS later- that doesn’t find a way to try and incorporate my eating issues- not even sickness.

I feel that same guilt I’ve felt in the past for not being “stronger” than the Flu and having the discipline to go to the gym today-

But alas, I also know it will pass if I allow it.

Everything passes in time – so, in other words, I’m going to just keep popping Advil and drinking Peppermint Tea until this one does too.

I’m a person in recovery from a lifetime eating disorder. I refuse to feel guilt for the side effects that linger when you’ve spent your whole life in that warped world.

I’m not a slave to it anymore- I can call myself out. I’m not going to act on it today- and that’s the best I can do.

Now, excuse me while I go cough up more phlegm. (I know, I know… ew.)

Yes, I filtered… because my God that hair.

12 thoughts on “When You Have The Flu But Still Have An Eating Disorder

  1. Pingback: “I Had The Flu, So I Lost Weight”: Anorexia – Illness – An Excuse To Relapse? – I Haven't Shaved In 6 Weeks

  2. Pingback: When You Miss Anorexia: 5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before A Relapse – I Haven't Shaved In 6 Weeks

  3. I hope you feel better soon! Please be careful because I think your cool (I’m sure lots of other people think you’re cool too) and I have lots of cat pictures that have nothing to do with life if you need them for a pick-me-up!

  4. I hear ya. I recently had a terrible group of large cysts on my right ovary. I was instructed “no excersize, not even speed walking for 4 weeks”. That’s a month. A month in which I have agonized, debated, and nearly broken the doctor’s rule. I even called a couple of times and checked her orders, just in case she meant 4 days. The risk of surgery, and losing my ovary kept me physically in check, though not mentally. This Monday was go day. I could taste that gym air and feel the burn. I was so excited. Then came bronchitis. What a bitch. So I’m not able to breath….maybe running will open up my lungs? What a beating it is to try to outsmart myself.

    1. Oyeeee- girl that sounds TERRIBLE- I’m so sorry. And I’m sorry that on top of that you’re struggling with the little ticks in all of our heads.

      LOL on the running will open up lungs. I’ve TOTALLY thought that same thing before. And I also ran last week still coughing and stuffed up because I was SO sure that running would help the drainage. It didn’t. I was back in bed that night unable to breathe through my f’ing nose.

      Good for you though that you actually kept to the doctor’s orders. I know it probably doesn’t seem like success but man, it really is because I KNOW what it is to sit there and fight that instinct- and it is our reality. Our little ed instincts are part of our reality- and they’re hard to overcome.

      If you ever need anything feel free to email me!!! lindsey42289@gmail.com hope you’re feeling better!

  5. Mary

    As always, you nailed it. That juxtaposition of “I am sick and could lose weight” yet also the “OMG, I am not burning any calories” . Thanks for putting it all in writing and sharing. You are on an inspiring journey. Lindsey, you rock.

    1. Ah thank you- and lie on the sofa I’ve done LOL. Finally back at work today but still feeling the residue effects of being sick. Was hoping to go work out but looks like another day I’m gonna have to take it easy! <3 Thanks for your support 🙂

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