Ah, January

More weight-loss ads on TV.  More gym promotions.  More articles in the paper.  In December, the local grocery had Stouffer’s cheaper than Lean Cuisine; this month, it’s reversed.

Some of my friends are upset that they gained weight in December.  Most frame this in “I was doing so good on my diet but in December….” and, well, you know.  I can’t help but wonder if this is a side affect of dieting and food restriction.

I actually weighed myself before Thanksgiving and again in January.  402, 399 – only a few pounds apart, which is well within the standard deviation for my scale.*   I didn’t try to stay the same weight.  Or to lose or gain.  I just did.  It reminds me of something Sassyblonde posted today:

For me, eating intuitively is basically “going back to eating the way nature intended in the first place.”   Your body will naturally tell you when you’re hungry and when you’re full. […] We as humans, with our constant desire to better things and sometimes go against nature to do it, are the ones that have screwed up the way we feel about food and weight.

I don’t mean this as a slam on people who do want to be stronger, more flexible, eat foods that taste great or feel good or are less expensive or whatever else.  I’m working on a be-stronger thing myself.**   But it’s surreal to see so many people expending so much effort trying to “maintain” their weight, when I do it without trying.


*My rough test was to put the scale in the kitchen and repeatedly weigh myself one morning.  Weights varied by up to 5lbs, or a little over 1%.   Some of this is the scale but some is probably due to stance and foot placement variations.

**13 days now.

7 thoughts on “Ah, January

  1. I’m like you, my weight remains pretty stable with intuitive eating.

    But the flip side of that is that my experience with exercise is DRASTICALLY different that what I hear from most people.

    I don’t feel good during of after exercise. I often feel bad for up to a week after doing hardcore aerobics. And pushing myself to do it day after day just makes me feel worse.

    And, somehow, when I explain that to people, I feel like I get a similar response that people get when they say dieting doesn’t work for them.

    I hear things like “No one likes exercise” and “Everyone feels bad the day after.”

    And the talk of people saying intuitive eating isn’t working for them makes me thing about that.

    If the idea is that variations of weight in the population are about us all being genetically diverse, then maybe intuitive eating won’t work to keep some people weight stable becasue they naturally tend to gain.

    But I no proof of this theory, other than the empirical evidence I’ve read of bl

  2. Some people do not do well with exercise. Some of us OVERDO exercise (&, in many cases, do not lose much weight even when exercising compulsively daily for years at a time, then regain twice what we lost when we cut back to normal exercise.) Some people are even allergic to exercise & can put themselves at serious risk when they force themselves to do it. If exercise makes you feel lousy, don’t do it. After years of exercising compulsively & trying to control the size & shape of my body with long bouts of what amounted to exercise bulimia, I am accepting my aging process (I am now 60 & post-menopausal), the natural slight weight gain of aging & response to all that exercise, the fact that my body is now an apple rather than the hourglass is once was, & that moderate movement, walking a reasonable amount of time at a pace I can handle, is enough movement. And, yes, perhaps some people do gain more than others, but it does seem as if those who do not diet or fight their bodies tend to be more stable than those who are constantly at war with themselves. I have even heard that soon now, given my age, my weight will start going slightly & slowly in the other direction. I guess I shall have to see, though I have noticed many aging people around me seeming to shrink with age.

    • Guess that depends on the person, wouldn’t you say? I do know the last time I gained weight was about 4 months into my last diet. A year after I started the diet I’d gained 10lbs.

      When I don’t diet, my weight goes down a bit when I’m exercising more and up a bit when I’m exercising less.

  3. I’m in the rebound stage, recovering from 20+ years of yo-yo dieting. I’ve been working on eating intuitively since last May. It is not surprising that I have been steadily gaining weight during that time period (I can tell from the mirror and my clothes; I do not use a scale anymore, too triggering). I am focusing on exercise as a stress-reliever and way to increase strength and stamina. I have let go of thinking that a workout must make me sweat to be worthwhile. I’m just waiting for my body to recognize that those bouts of food restriction are a thing of the past so I can let go of all this energy-hoarding. I will be grateful when I can just settle “somewhere”. I know in my head that this will happen, but I can’t help the occasional moments of panic in which I feel like the weight gain will never stop. These moments are getting farther and father apart, though, so I’m on the road to acceptance. Thanks so much for sharing your experience. It is so helpful to see that you just naturally maintain the same weight without effort when you’re not trying to interfere with the normal processes. I’m hoping that will be me, too, soon!

  4. In January I feel like I’m the only sane person in America, and the crazy people keep assaulting my senses and trying to get in my head. I want to hold my hands over my ears and scream “leave me alone!!” Even though I’m pretty happy with my body, you can’t hear all of that crap day and night without it affecting your subconscious at least a bit.

  5. Pingback: January Monthly Roundup « Living ~400lbs

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