Out of the Comfort Zone


27. June 2013 by swissfitchick

I got a few questions, on how I manage to stay in shape and fearless through vacation, so I thought I am picking up this subject today.

Now I was really excited to go on that 15 day vacation. I could hardly wait. But that weren’t the only feelings I had about it. There were also fears. Anxieties. I knew, I will be in an unknown country, with a different schedule, with different food and different workout possibilities. Okay, I knew, that I can probably find more healthy food in NY than here, and I also knew I will be able to workout, but still – it’s the fear of stepping out of the comfort zone.


I am lucky to have Sandro, who is fully supporting me in all of my issues. I talked to him  a lot about these emotions before we left and on some days before leaving, I even had small panic attacks, that I would turn into a wale after eating out for 15 days. He assured me, that we wouldn’t eat burger, fries and ice cream every day and that he would support me in any way possible, that I feel happy and comfortable on our vacation.


I can tell you, that I am SO glad that Sandro knows everything about my inner struggles. It took me a LOT to open up to him and to be honest all the time, cause sometimes I just feel SO ashamed in front of anybody, even my closest people. I was never judged by Sandro and even though he can not feel what I feel, he still is supportive, understanding, patient and always here. For me, for myself it is not such a big deal to live with my fears, because I know them inside and out, I know myself and when I am miserable and down on a day, I can stand that. I can run away from emotions or hide them, cause nobody will notice. When I am alone, I can decide what to eat, when to eat, how long to workout and I can keep up with disordered habits as long as I want to. It may sound weird, but it’s easier to be in the ‘comfort zone’ (which isn’t necessarily healthy – at least not mine all the time) when you’re alone. But of course you don’t want your partner or friend to suffer from your bad mood or some irrational panic attacks. The partner releases and shows the struggles and anxieties inside of us even more – they unconsciously act like a mirror. And it is hard to face your own fears so clearly. It’s just not as easy to block out emotions, cause the partner will sooner or later discover them. So in the beginning of our relationship, it wasn’t always easy when it came to my ED subjects – and on some days still isn’t. But that’s a subject for an other post. Which will also include the story of a relationship that broke because of my ED.

IMG_3460So, while on vacation, I really just made sure, I have a balance and SOMEHOW a routine. I insisted to book hotels with workout equipment, so I had the chance to workout. It might be a little obsessed, but for now, working out in the mornings keeps me sane and makes me much more balanced throughout the day. So all in all, I had a similar workout routine like at home. I did a workout first thing in  the morning at the hotel gym, or I went to the Brooklyn Bridge Bootcamp. Clearly, I took 1-2 restdays per week and enjoyed sleeping in. After all I was on vacation.


Regarding food, I made sure, to start my day clean. I had my BombShell first thing…..

Green Base Powder, Apple Cider Vinegar, Organic Fruit Juice

Green Base Powder, Apple Cider Vinegar, Organic Fruit Juice

…and my lemon water on the side.

After my workout (or OUR, when Sandro joined me), we mostly went out to get something at the store. We would have had to pay extra for the hotel breakfast and I know that I don’t eat breakfast worth 20$. So of course, I had my daily fresh organic juice…

Cucumber, Kale, Celery, Pineapple, Orange, Ginger - YUMMINESS!!

Cucumber, Kale, Celery, Pineapple, Orange, Ginger – YUMMINESS!!

Carrott, Celery, Cucumber, Apple

Carrott, Celery, Cucumber, Apple

….plus hardboiled eggs or a yogurtmess on the side.


2 hardboiled eggs, smoothie

2 hardboiled eggs, smoothie

I didn’t think about food too much later in the day, since we were walking around like crazy for hours and I got so many impressions I had to handle. Yet, I made sure I had some healthy snacks on hand, like Baby Carrots, Coconut Water, a Protein Bar, more hardboiled eggs or nuts.

Sometimes we grabbed what was available…..




IMG_0636 pizza

…and that was extremely ok. I tried not to get obsessed with an eating routine and just go with the flow. It worked extremely well and made my body coming to a relax mode where I felt really good and even lost a little weight.

We didn’t go out for dinner so much. First, it would have been too expensive, and second, there was where my fears came up the most. Eating out is normally not such a big problem for me anymore, but when I have to go to restaurants every day, I get in trouble. Besides that, my tummy isn’t happy either, because it’s not used to handle all the different kinds of spices, oils and ways of food preparation.

Of course, we DID enjoy some great food out….


….but then several times, we took the advantage to attack Whole Foods Salad Bar….


In the mix> Spinach, Kale, Detox Salad (shredded cauliflower, broccoli, celery and raisins), Radish, Cherry Tomatoes, Cucumber, Cauliflower, Grilled Chicken, Hardboiled Egg, Veggie-Stuffed Wineleaves

In the mix> Spinach, Kale, Detox Salad (shredded cauliflower, broccoli, celery and raisins), Radish, Cherry Tomatoes, Cucumber, Cauliflower, Grilled Chicken, Hardboiled Egg, Veggie-Stuffed Wineleaves

…or while at Cape Cod, we cooked up some home made deliciousness.


Looking back at these days, I think I did a pretty good job. I kept it clean and lean 70-80% of the time, and kept up with my lean out progress thanks to my workouts. But I did leave the comfort zone on several occasions, let go and enjoyed. And it felt good. Just good.

How do you challenge yourself to step out of your comfort zone – and how does it feel?

Do you eat out a lot? 



22 thoughts on “Out of the Comfort Zone

  1. Jessie says:

    You and Sandro are just a lovely match for one another. I am truly am so happy that you two have one another. You both are able to bring out the positives in each other. Your love just shines, and seems to blossom more each & every day ❤ Glad you have such a rock who supports you no matter what.

  2. I keep most of my time (around 80%) eating clean, and 20% cheat food. 🙂
    It is not good to push yourself to hard!

  3. Sandro sounds so wonderful, I am so happy you have someone who is so understanding and looks after you. I know what you mean about healthy eating and a routine while away, it is something I do worry a little about but just try to get in what I can. Usually we do a lot of walking and I’ll usually stick to similar breakfasts and lunches as I would at home. Then there are lots of treats but I never notice a change because of all the walking and exploring.

  4. Hi Lucie, really loved reading this post – it is so true about everything you wrote about keeping in the comfort zone with disordered eating, and normally it is easy to hide etc. but when there’s someone else involved it is a whole different picture, especially the part about partners acting as unconscious mirrors. I didn’t realise how ‘rigid’ my routines were (regarding food & exercise) until I moved in with my boyfriend who suddenly picked up on the fact that when I’m stressed my instinct is to stick to ‘my healthy plan’ and if I veered away from it at all then I would get very anxious/upset/irritable etc. And he started picking up those emotions and feeling that way too! The worst thing one night was when he asked me for weight loss tips (and this is from a guy who has NEVER worried about his weight – yes he fluctuates but in a completely healthy range) and it totally broke me heart. To feel like I had subconsciously fed him my unhealthy thoughts! It made me realise that I had to address these issues. I look forward to reading about how you addressed yours in your relationship as am sure it will be very helpful for all 🙂

    • Thank you so much Lucy (what a beautiful name :-)) for that awesome comment! I totally feel you on the fact that it all shows up when moving in together. There’s just no chance anymore to hide all the disrodered habits and we have to face them, which is not easy.
      You’re so honest about your relationship and I truly hope that you found a way to enjoy the love without having the nasty thoughts and ‘rules’ in your way!!
      I will definitely address this subject closer in an other post.

  5. Danielle says:

    So amazing to see this Lucie! I’m so proud of you for conquering some major fears and anxiety on this trip! It’s always a work in progress for me too but you are doing amazing! So proud of you 🙂

  6. I remember how terrified I was of going on my first real vacation when I was well into recovery with my ED. Not having my safe foods? Not being able to stick to my schedule? Oh man – anxiety up the wazoo. But I actually found it to be incredibly beneficial. It forced me out of my comfort zone and made me realize that… hey… the world doesn’t end if I don’t do X or eat Y. In fact, life becomes even more enjoyable with that extra little bit of novelty thrown in. It’s great to hear that you had such an awesome vacation, love; and Sandro definitely sounds like a keeper 🙂

    • I couldn’t agree more, love. It’s so good to realize, that nothing changes or nothing falls apart just because we don’t eat/workout exactly the way we used to. Au contraire, it just shows us how easy it can be to enjoy changes and these steps out of our comfort zone. It’s such a huge help in recovery!!

  7. Sandro sounds like such a great guy and wonderful support system. As appealing as staying in my comfort zone is, I regularly try to push myself out of it- deep down I know it’s the only way I will grow as a person! You sound like you did a great job in terms of food during your trip, Lucie 🙂

    • Thank you Kushboo! So right – we grow, when we take a chance to change our routines. It might feel uncomfortable in the beginning, but it’s never as terrible as our fears tell us beforehand!

  8. While on vacation…I continue to mindful of what I eat but, that being said, I do enjoy a little more as well! 🙂

    Healthy living is a lifestyle….Going on vacation isn’t a chance for me to take a break from it. I love eating well and exercising. Makes me feel good! Everything in moderation 🙂

    Great job and love the support you have xo

    • Couldn’t agree more!! Even though I indulged here and there, I made sure I fuel my body right and I get my exercise in. Why changing something that makes me feel good on vacation? I want to come back energized and relaxed, and that’s what healthy food and exercising does for me.
      Thank you girl!!

  9. Lisa says:

    Proud of you lovely for stepping outside of that comfort zone!
    Oh gosh, I remember the first time I went away after ED and it was pretty miserable. I carried all my own food, and really was SO focused on food I couldn’t enjoy anything, but the next time after I had been in recovery for about 6 months it was definitely better, but I still struggle a bit with being super out of routine. I think it just gets easier each time we get outside that comfort zone.

    • Thank you so much Hunn!
      I was the same on my vacations in the past. I was terrified! I didn’t want to go, I’d rather stay at home, just to be safe. But as you say – it gets better each time, it’s a work in progress!

  10. Way to go!!! I alwyas get a little worried before a vacation, but then I remind myself that I didn’t get where I was in 2 weeks and I’m not going to derail it in 2 weeks either!

  11. Sometimes, we need a vacation just to remind us that it’s ok to get outside of our comfort zone every once in a while! I know vacations and being away from my regular schedule definitely had a toll on me in recovery…but eventually, I learned to remind myself that I ate and exercise pretty damn well on a regular basis, and a week or two or the year means nothing compared to the rest of it – so I took advantage of fun food and more relaxation time.

    Glad to hear that you were able to push outside of that comfort zone a little bit! The more you do it, the easier it gets, promise.

    • Thank you so much Sam!! It’s definitely about how we eat during the whole year and not in these 2 weeks. And I realize that with every vacation, my fears decrease.

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