Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Finding Your Happy Place in Weight Loss

Finding Your Happy Place in Weight Loss - A Simpler Grace
Today, we're going to talk about a topic that many of you won't enjoy talking about. Weight. If you've ever had a weight loss journey (like me) this subject might make you or have made you uncomfortable at one time or another. 
You can't walk through the magazine section at the bookstore without noticing at least a dozen covers featuring rail-thin women looking immaculate in their designer outfits. Department store mannequins only come in two women's sizes, regular and "plus size", which is usually not much larger than a 10 or 12. In fact, women's clothing sizes don't take into account our body shapes and aren't even uniform from one store to another. What is an 8 at one retailer is a 14 at another. Rarely do real women fit into standard sample-size clothing.

No wonder we feel bad about ourselves when looking in the dressing room mirror!

The world we live in puts way too emphasis on our outer appearance - our size and shape, our skin, our smiles, even our clothes and accessories - when the real emphasis should be put on our health. I don't need to tell you that humans come in all shapes and sizes. What might be thin (or "overweight") for me, might be nothing of the sort for you. Our bodies change as we age and our weight fluctuates throughout our lives due to stress, pregnancy, hormonal changes and many other factors.

Twelve years ago, I was about 100 pounds heavier than I am today. Over the course of about five years, my body underwent some major changes and it took me a long time to get to a place where I was stable in a weight range but also felt healthy. I lost over 120 pounds and at my thinnest, I was 130 pounds, which, for my height, was pretty thin. I wasn't happy at that weight. Sure, it was nice to fit into sizes I hadn't been able to wear since junior high, but I didn't feel good, and that bothered me. 

I made a bold decision to try to gain some of the weight back, but by working out and building muscle tone rather than just adding on pounds.  It was more important for me to find a place where I felt healthy rather than reaching a goal number.

Since then, my weight has fluctuated within a twenty-pound range, partially because of some medical issues, but also #becauselife and I'm ok with that. As long as I feel healthy and confident, I'm happy with whatever my number is.

I share my personal story because I want to encourage you to find your happy place in your weight loss journey. Rather than aim for a specific number or size that likely won't bring you true happiness, I want you to find the size you feel healthy and confident at. Weight loss is more about finding yourself than obtaining the "perfect" figure. Whether you are 130 pounds or 300, the important thing is that you feel healthy and are confident when you look at yourself in the mirror. 

Have you struggled with finding your happy place in weight loss?

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  1. I love your perspective on this. I am in the middle of being around 80 lbs heavier than I'd like to be. About a year ago though, I actually got rid of our scale because I decided that it really wasn't the numbers that I wanted to focus on - they're too easy to get caught up in. <3

  2. Kayla, the scale is the root of all evil! I found that I was constantly competing with myself to "beat" the last number and I would hate on myself when I didn't. As long as the fit of my clothing doesn't drastically change, I feel like I'm doing ok. Thanks for coming by to read today and good luck in your journey! If you need any pointers on how I lost mine, I'm happy to chat! :)

  3. Having a baby definitely takes a toll on ones body and although nursing helps shed that initial weight and the swelling finally goes down, I still find myself with bad body image days. However, I remind myself that women’s bodies are strong and having just created and birthed a child I’m cutting myself some slack. I had curves before and the scale still seems to show a scary number, but I feel healthy and my husband loves my body and that’s fine with me :) Thanks so sharing such a great perspective!

  4. Kelly, I know so many new moms who struggle with the same thoughts. Carrying and nurturing a child for 9 months is a BIG DEAL. My sister just delivered her second last winter and always gets upset at the number on the scale and I have to remind her that she didn't gain that weight eating pint after pint of Haagen Dazs - it was because she created a living thing inside her. I hope that you have fewer and fewer of those bad days as your body starts to return to your "normal" range. In the meantime, it sounds like you've got a good man in your corner! Thanks so much for stopping by to read and share your thoughts! <3

  5. TOTALLY!!! I'd love pointers, should we message on Facebook? This seems like a funny place to hash that out. haha! ;)

  6. Haha! Yeah, we don't have to have that conversation here in the comments. ;) Facebook is great. Send me a friend request if you want to!

  7. Of course! It’s something that is nestled in there and only pops out from time to time. But, I’m thankful for a recent trip to Target to pick up some needed basic Ts and shirts, which boost my self confidence. I’m definitely having to get used to this new body of mine and try to not pay attention to sizes, but rather my own reflection and feelings. You make some pretty great points and it’s nice to find comfort with others about body image.

  8. Target has the cutest clothes! I could spend so much money there... I'm glad you found some pieces that make you feel good. :)