I’m 5’4”, age 39, Asian and 164lbs. I have one child and I never step on the scale because it stresses me out. I work out hard, even on days I don’t want to. I still find a way to push myself. I meal prep and I try to watch what I eat, but no matter what I’m not losing weight or inches. I’m thinking of all the things I have cut out and it makes me wonder why I’m still not losing weight? I would like to get back to my weight before I got pregnant which was 125 – 130. I try to tell myself I’m gaining muscle but I still haven’t convinced myself to believe it. I want to love my body but I can’t. The number on the scale literally stresses me out. When I do lose weight, I gain it all back. What am I doing wrong?? Why can’t I love myself?
Discouraged with Dieting
Dear Discouraged with Dieting,
I wish I could just give you a big hug! If there’s one thing I want you to know it’s this: we have ALL been there and you are NOT alone.
Unfortunately, I’ve learned that self-love doesn’t always come naturally. It takes time, TONS of self-care and a serious change of mindset to get there. It’s definitely not easy! But hopefully I can help.
First, your body created and birthed a child! THAT is seriously something amazing and something that we as women don’t always give ourselves enough credit for. Yeah, a lot of changes come with pregnancy and having a baby, but they are all signs that you created life! So if you think of pregnancy as the point you started to lose confidence in your body, I want you to work on your mindset. That was your body’s greatest achievement! It’s totally okay for our bodies to change, and yours did some amazing things in the process!
Second, it’s natural for our bodies to change the way we burn calories and hold onto weight as we get older. I’ve even noticed changes in my own body lately! Embrace it, and be easy on yourself. You can’t control changes in your metabolism or other things that come with getting older, but you CAN spend time figuring out what your body needs.
As far as losing weight, I’ve got some thoughts that might help. First, kinda like I said before, all bodies are different. Sometimes it just takes trial and error to figure out how our bodies need to be fueled. Second, think about what you fuel your body with instead of what you restrict. Are you consistent with your diet? Are you mindful when you eat? Are you choosing mostly whole foods? Lastly, it doesn’t always come down to diet and exercise. SO MANY THINGS go into weight loss/weight gain, like stress, sleep and hormones. So here are some things you can ask yourself:
- Am I getting enough quality sleep?
- Am I stressed out? If I am, what can I do to manage my stress (better sleep, meditation, taking more time for myself, etc.)
- Should I talk to my Dr. about any hormonal changes I might be experiencing?
I’m so PROUD of you for staying active and for working hard to eat healthy. Make sure you’re enjoying your workouts, and if you’re obsessing over calories, I’d recommend you stop tracking them. Focus on eating whole, nutritious foods and don’t fall into the temptation to crash diet or obsess over calories. Oh, and let’s forget the scale for awhile! That number doesn’t tell the whole truth about our bodies, plain and simple. If you’re exercising and eating healthy, you ARE getting healthier.
I hope this helps and gives you some things to think about! Remember that it’s all about lifestyle, and being kind to yourself is SO important!
PS – If you have a burning question you want to ask me, I’m taking questions via text at 510-692-4556. Currently this only works for US and Canada. If you’re outside of those countries, you can leave a question below.