Find your happy weight.
What's your happy weight?
I've worked with women who weigh 115lb, look frail, feel anxious, can't sleep and are struggling with hormone imbalances. I've also worked with women who weight 175lb are active, eat well, sleep well and feel happy and fulfilled in their life and relationships.
What does your goal weight FEEL like? Is it worth it if you get there and feel less healthy and energetic than you do now?
How do you imagine your life when you reach it? What's different? Are you more joyful? Are you more adventurous? Go on adventures that bring you joy now!
"Happiness is just around the corner you'll never turn." It's not as depressing as it sounds. What I take this to mean is if we're always waiting for a specific objective marker in our life to tell us we're happy, we'll never be there. Sure you can keep working towards a lower weight, nicer car, higher paying job, relationship - but if you decide you won't be happy until you get _____ you'll spend most of your life in a state of want, not happiness.
And what happens if you get there and you're not happy?
Focus on health. Focus on the experiences & relationships that bring you joy. Do more of that and do it now. Not when you get to a magical number.
This isn't to say activity and eating well aren't important, of course they are. But reconsider your end goal. Watch your habits and your happiness too, not just your weight.
I've gotten to my goal weight before through restriction and control. I missed social events, made excuses for not eating and went back and forth between binging and restricting. I lose the weight but nothing happened when I "got there". I wasn't a different person, everything didn't just fall into place, and I could only continue to restrict for so long.
I used to count every calorie that went into my body. I still have food journals where I wrote YAY when I was under the ridiculously low targets I would give myself. I got my self worth from starving myself and seeing it on paper.
I was exhausted, anxious and wasn't enjoying anything I ate, constantly trying to calculate how many calories it had.
I learned that eventually a way of eating based on control is going to end. As much as media messages trying to convince us otherwise, the truth is will power cannot beat biology. If your body thinks it's starving it's going to make your brain scream FEED ME.
I just realized last month that I'm also currently at the same weight I had starved myself to get to before. But this time it feels different, this time I feel good too.
Last month it has been over 2 years since I stepped on a scale. I was about to start a ketogenic diet, had done lots of blood work and weight was just another way to monitor how this way of eating affected my health. I was surprised to see I was at the same weight I had starved myself to get to before. But this time it felt different, this time I felt good too.
I had no idea I was that weight again. I don't count calories, restricted or deprived myself like I did 5 years ago. I choose foods because of how they make my brain and body feel, not because of how they make it look.
While in school I learned what what real food is and how to nourish my body. I learned that my mind and my body are not separate and I can't take care of one without taking care of the other. I learned that food is about connection, joy, celebration and information and NO food is not "just fuel."
My relationship with food has dramatically changed. I still LOVE food but it's a different kind of love. It's not a frantic "I need ice cream now it's the only thing that will make me feel better" kind of love. It's more of a love for the whole process. I love going grocery shopping, preparing wholesome meals and sharing them with the people I love. I love trying new recipes, new flavours, and slowing down and savouring food that I enjoy.
I also love not having to overthink every bite I take.
And the truth is it's not a quick "fix" but maybe you don't need "fixing."
Slow down, eat food you love that loves you back, enjoy the ride (and any other cliches that I forgot to mention).
Wishing you all the health & happiness in the world.