A couple months ago, SELF magazine had an article/quiz about finding your “happy” weight.
I had to laugh when it said my “happy weight” was 135, which ironically, had been my original WW goal.
Their idea of a “happy weight” is my idea of a “fighting weight,” a weight that I might not reach without serious deprivation or over-exercising … and even if I got there, it wouldn’t necessarily be maintainable in the long-term.
How do I know this? Well, the truth is (shhhh!!!), the lowest I ever got on Weight Watchers (on my old scale) was 138.4 (Note: on my new scale I never saw below 144).
I saw that “beautiful 138.4” twice, and nearly cried for joy seeing a “3” in my stats (though in reality it was probably not accurate).
And you know what? Both times I shot up to 142 the following week. At the time, I didn’t understand it. Until then, I’d been losing steadily, so why did I hit that wall?
It turns out, I evened out around 140-142 and stayed there for about a year before I settled a couple pounds higher than that the past two years.
It seems my body — which had been on the heavier side my whole life — was naturally happy at 140-142.
It suited me fine, and didn’t require a lot of effort to maintain: I just exercised like usual, and kept following Weight Watchers.
Today, I’m nearly five years older and a few pounds heavier from my lightest. Fortunately, I didn’t gain back too much, but like most people who lose weight and manage to keep it off, I’ve gained a couple lbs. from my lowest weight, which is more proof to me that my “fighting weight” just wasn’t meant to be.
At nearly 5’6 with broad shoulders and big thighs, a pretty-flat tummy and an otherwise fairly muscular frame, I have a good BMI, good waist-to-hip-ratio and good body fat percentage …
So now I consider anything below 145 my “happy weight.” I have a couple pounds to go before I am back there, but it’s nothing a couple weeks of extra diligence couldn’t change (though I’ve been struggling here for two years). And even if I don’t get there, it wouldn’t be the end of the world.
Regardless of the three digits on the scale, I refuse to be disappointed in myself. In fact, I’m hoping giving myself that wiggle room will help me get back to goal.
It took me a long time to realize it, but 135 would really be my “fighting weight” and quite frankly, I don’t want to work that hard to see a number anymore.
I’m still a size 6, I exercise daily, I eat pretty clean, and I don’t hate my reflection in the mirror. Those are all positives and I ought to focus my energy there, rather than on the scale.
Some things just simply aren’t worth the fight. In the end, it’s just a number and I don’t care as much about “going that low”.
As Dr. G would say, there’s not a big difference between and A- and an A. Both are As. It’s high time I embrace it. I’ve kept off at least 25 lbs. for 4.5 years, and that says a lot.
“Fighting weight” be damned!
How about you? What is your body’s natural “happy weight,” and how does it compare to your “fighting weight?”