Hello, my loves so in today's blog I am talking about weight loss! If you have been on social media over the last four or five months you will have seen a ton of your friends, or maybe even yourself talking about how you need to lose weight or you're worried about all of the lockdown weight that you're putting on.
There is a kind of obsession with how much weight we may have put on over the lockdown and I want to talk about that a little because 'I need to lose weight' is a really big sentence that is happening at the moment.
If you watch the news you will also know that there is a lot of conversation going on about how the government is now telling you that you need to lose weight as well and their campaign is putting the responsibility of the NHS on the shoulders of the people instead of taking responsibility for funding anything properly. Lets be clear, this is blatant fat shaming and avoidance of what needs to be done by the government. Making the UKs food poverty and extremely detrimental policies an individual problem of 'eat less, move more' is abhorrent.
However, what I want to talk about is not losing weight. I don't want to talk to you about how you can lose weight, my top tips for losing weight, what you could eat to lose weight, how you can keep those pounds off...What I want to do instead is to ask you a few questions. Maybe you have in your head that you need to lose weight or you've put on weight over the lockdown, or you have felt shamed by the governments latest campaign.
I want to ask you 'Do you? Do you actually need to lose weight? why?' Okay, that's 3 questions but I'd really love for you to tell me why.
What is the aim of losing that weight?
Diet programs if you don't know already, don't work long term. They are fantastic for short term weight loss (fantastic as in, does what they say they will. I do not advocate diet programs) which is why you see so many shirt term results of them. They're absolutely amazing for dropping your weight significantly and very quickly. But over the long term that is proven scientifically to not actually be a sustainable thing for 99.9% (not an actual academic figure) of all people. The problem is what you then end up seeing on your social media is the 'success stories'. What I'd like to ask is what price does that success come at. Yes, people have managed to knock off the weight that they wanted to but what were the sacrifices?
Unfortunately, the majority of people who have negative body image are on diets and weight loss plans of some kind. This often comes with a massive preoccupation with food. With foods that are allowed, foods that aren't allowed. There are restrictive mindsets around if I eat this food then I will need to do this much exercise, if I 'treat' myself with this particular food then I will need to make sure that I calculate calories to drop my calories tomorrow because I ate this treat. This kind of complete preoccupation with your body, what your body looks like and the food that you put into your body is really damaging for your mental health and your overall long term health too.
What I'd love you to explore is how do you want to feel? What does losing that weight actually mean to you? What would it change?
Because so often I ask my clients what I could make better if I had a magic wand and they say to make them skinny/thin/smaller/ healthy. But actually, when we drill down into the why's of what losing that weight might mean to them, it's actually nothing to do with the weight. It's because they want to feel confident, they want to feel self-confident and self-worthy and respected by themselves and by others. They want to feel loved, they want to feel the joy, they want to enjoy moving their body and they also want to feel healthy.
This massive preoccupation with the idea that health and thinness are two things that come together is understandable. It's in your face on a daily, hourly, constant basis. If you are not this particular weight or within this particular weight range, it means that you are unhealthy and this is not a truth. Yeah, it's a possible truth because there are some people who exist in bigger bodies who do not have the best health but there are also people like me who inhabit smaller bodies, who had 20 years of very poor health. There are so many people out there who exist in thinner slimmer bodies who are extremely poorly health-wise. The same goes for people who inhabit bigger bodies too. Ask the question of why. Why do you need to lose weight?
Bodies are designed to change
Bodies are miraculous amazing things that change constantly to meet your needs. If you have been eating a lot more foods that are very comforting over the lockdown, consider that maybe its absolutely excellent that you have found a tool that you can use to bring yourself comfort. There are lots of other tools that you can also use to bring you comfort too!
See that food as a tool that you have used to bring yourself comfort because we eat for so many different reasons and food is a really amazing thing that we can use for lots of different reasons. Ask yourself what the aim is. Is it because your clothes have got too tight? Because I have a solution for that but you might not like it. Buy bigger clothes.
I'm not being flippant when I suggest that. If you can't afford new clothes have a look at the charity shops and do your bit for reusing resources too! Have a look you know on eBay, sell some of your clothes that no longer fit to provide you with some money to buy some clothes that do fit! Because whatever weight you are, whatever size you are, you deserve to be comfortable in your clothes. You deserve to be able to move your body in ways that bring you joy and happiness and make you feel good. You deserve to be loved and respected
by yourself and by others and you deserve to feel healthy. Remembering that healthy is not an attached thing to thinness, health is so much more than just the weight of your body or the shape of your body, it is so much more than that and in the strive to be as thin as
possible as if that is an indicator of how healthy you are there is an epidemic of so many people that are really unwell. Unwell with their mental health, unwell with depression and anxiety, unwell with bodies that are not strong and able, unwell with so many different things.
So today I just ask you to consider a little bit more deeply your whys about weight loss, your whys about losing those lockdown pounds and I would also ask that you look a little bit deeper into the science that tells us that weight and health are not two things that go together automatically.
Ask yourself why you're fed a diet that tells you your weight is not okay. As always everything that i share here is for you to either investigate or ignore but I hope you consider investigating, I hope you look deeper into starting to really own your own experience in your own body.
You could even join me over in The Conscious Collective to explore further. The concept
we are exploring this quarter is Dare To Nourish. It's about nourishing your body, nourishing your mind and nourishing your soul and funnily enough that has nothing to do with the weight of your body!
If you do anything today, please consider looking into the long term health implications of dieting. Because you deserve better than what is being spouted in the world right now.