Hello!! HAPPY HAPPY Wednesday!!!
I use the word HAPPY all the time, so if you're wondering if I'm always HAPPY, the answer is...most of the time :D I have so much to be HAPPY about! My mama taught me that life is what you make it!! I choose to enjoy life, I laugh a lot, and I even smile until it hurts...lol! Sometimes I wonder if I'm creating wrinkles around my mouth :D
Okay, moving on, how are you doing?! Are you having a productive week?! I hope so!! If not, it's only midweek, so make some healthy choices :D YOU GOT THIS!!!
Today's post is on body image :) What happens after the weight comes off?! Whether you've dropped 10 or 110 pounds, you may still struggle with what you see in the mirror!! Sometimes, as a CPT, I witness this. BUT, really, you have a lot to be proud of! You've done the hard part!! Now your mind-set just needs some minor adjustments ;) Below, professionals offer their best advice! Keep reading and be proud of your accomplishment!!
MIRROR STRUGGLE: You've dropped at least a full size in clothes, but why doesn't your size 8 fit you the way your friend's size 8 fits?
MIND-SET ADJUSTMENT: It's these body-comparisons, and not appreciating your unique shape, that is consistently linked to body dissatisfaction, says Jo Gilmartin, Ph.D., of the University of Leeds in England, who's studied attitudes after weight loss. To be happy, it's important to stop viewing others as the benchmark. "The best way to flip your thinking is to look for victory instead of defeat," says Jo Ann Valle, M.S.W., a clinical social worker in Northampton, MA. This means giving yourself credit for every triumph: "Write out a list of all the things that have improved. Are you eating healthier? Do you have more energy? And you have gone down a size. Celebrate every change because it's easy to forget the struggle it took to get there," Valle says. Revisit this list, and add to it, as often as possible. (Never underestimate the power of a scissors snip, either: If the 8s look great but you're bereft they're not 6s, just cut the size tag off.)
MIRROR STRUGGLE: The weight is gone, but your new smaller body still has the same general shape as your old body. (Your legs are thinner, but you had your heart set on a thigh gap!)
MIND-SET ADJUSTMENT: If only we drop pounds a la carte, skinnier legs, thinner waist, etc. "It's tough to accept genetic predispositions," Valle says. Even if, intellectually, you knew that your arms wouldn't magically get longer as they got leaner, emotionally, you'd imagined it, and now you're kind of crushed. Remember, though, that everyone has a feature they don't love. So focus on what body part you do love and play it up (Valle suggests treating yourself to some new clothes). And, again, keep a list of how your life has gotten better: Staying positive is especially key around the 25 pound milestone to protect yourself from that "once a pear shape, always a pear shape" mentality, slipping into the "why even bother?" trap, and gaining the weight back. "Step it up a notch, by buying fitness clothes that enhance a body part you're proud of and ROCK OUT your workouts," says Pamela Stewart, a NASM certified personal trainer. "Show confidence while breaking a sweat, and chances are, you'll feel more powerful and people will notice that about you."
MIRROR STRUGGLE: You love the benefits of no longer being so big, but it's hard to look beyond the sagging skin you have now.
MIND-SET ADJUSTMENT: Women who've lost the most, often feel like they have the least to be happy about. Loose skin is such a mental hurdle for formerly large people, in fact, that "it triggers huge dissatisfaction with appearance," Gilmartin says, and those feelings of ugliness can then spiral to depression and isolation. To combat this, Valle (who's lost 80 pounds herself) recommends bolstering yourself with a mantra, like "this skin is proof of how far I've come," and to extend its power with an anchor, like a piece of jewelry or a small stone "that you touch when you feel those twinges of disappointment." In a recent study of formerly obese people published in The Journal of Clinical Nursing, Gilmartin also found that joining an online community or support group of others who've lost a lot of weight, and are familiar with the way it can mess with your head, can encourage you out of a funk. "Try and focus on how much healthier you look," says Stewart. "There's a lot to be said for people who look healthy."
Don't forget to celebrate every accomplishment! Then, add another goal (or two) to your list!! You're a work in progress, actually, we're ALL a work in progress :D
Have a FITastic couple of days!
Be sure to check back in on Fridayyyyy!!
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Pamela Stewart, NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Weight Loss Specialist