Body Image

Struggling with weight and willpower


This is the time of year when many people’s new year’s resolutions start to fall by the wayside as resolve falters and their old habits resume. 

I didn’t even make any resolutions and yet I still find myself depressed and frustrated with my lack of motivation. 

Two and a half years ago, I managed to lose a bunch of weight by meticulously charting every single calorie I ate. When I hit a weight I was happy with, I stopped being quite so obsessive and I mostly managed to maintain where I was by just keeping a casual eye on my food choices and trying to exercise regularly. 

All of that worked OK until, in pretty close succession, I went back to work in the office and no longer had the flexibility to take Zoom calls on my exercise bike but instead was sitting at my desk all day; I lost my mom suddenly and had no appetite for anything, but when I did, it was carbs and cheese and carbs with cheese; and the hurricane hit, forcing us all to scatter and sustain ourselves on convenience store snacks, fast food, and various non-perishables like jerky and all the ice cream we had to eat when the freezer stopped working. 

By the time the holidays rolled around this year, I’d gained back a lot of the weight I’d lost and so I more or less shrugged and said, “I’ll worry about it after I eat my New Year’s Eve charcuterie board with champagne.”

The problem is, though, now it’s after New Year’s Eve, and I don’t waaaaant to. I don’t mind eating salads for lunch and exercising a few times a week, but that’s not enough to move the scale. And I have no desire to give up pasta; join a gym (ew, germs, even pre-COVID); do intermittent fasting (I get headachey and hangry); or go back to tracking my every calorie, which led to Google searches like “how many calories in an olive” and “how many calories in a single Jolly Rancher.” I know for sure I’d rather never be able to button my skinny jeans again than put another bite of a Lean Cuisine in my mouth ever again, and maybe that’s my answer.

Maybe the truth is that if I’m eating mostly healthy (with the occasional indulgence) and exercising frequently (several times a week), my body just wants to be the weight it is, and I don’t need to be taking any drastic measures. I’m still within a healthy range; I just can’t fit into any of my dresses from college. 

And I guess that makes sense … because I’m not in college anymore. My imperfect body has grown and sustained two actual human beings, and I am grateful to be strong and healthy at this point in my life. 

Maybe what I need to work on is changing my mindset instead of my waistline?  




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