Ideal Body Weight?
I often get asked to tell people what their ‘ideal weight is’ and I will duly get my calculator out and tell them, but really your ideal weight depends on what you need your body to do.
If you are a model, you need your body to look great in clothes. If you’re not a model then this isn’t the most important job that you need your body to do.
If you’re a Mum with a young family, you need your body to allow you to run around after your kids all day and you need to enjoy that desperately deserved coffee and cake with a friend when you can squeeze it in. If that means you’re carrying a few extra pounds, it is probably because you are dedicating every minute of the day to your family and that’s what your body needs to do.
If you’re a Mum whose sanity depends on regular exercise and still feeling like yourself, then if you’re doing the best thing for you, that is also the best thing for your family.
If you’re working full time and you’re tired and busy and stressed, putting yourself under extra pressure to also look like a model or a ballet dancer will only lead to more stress! Fix the cause of the stress first, then work on you.
If you are a Mum and your kids are older, now is the time to put the effort into being the healthiest you can be so that you can play with your grandchildren and hold your great-grandchildren.
If you’re a ballet dancer and you need to be as slim as you can be to be lifted and to avoid undue stress on your joints from additional weight, then that is what you need your body to do.
If you’re a rugby player and you need to be tough and strong, then being the same weight as the ballet dancer won’t work for you!
I am a dietitian, I need to have the confidence to stand in front of people and have them put their faith in me that I can help them to improve their health through diet. I also need to be able to run a long way with my dog because that is how I switch off, sometimes I get lost and I need to know that I have enough reserves to get back without collapsing. I also like to go to the gym and lift weights because it makes me feel strong, I am heavier than people might think I ‘should be’ because of the jobs I need my body to do.
If your weight is making you self conscious or stopping you from doing the things that make you feel good about being you, then you should try to change your weight because your body isn’t working for you!
Remember, no-one can tell you what your weight ‘should be’ unless they know what you are asking your body to do…and also remember that most people aren’t models and if you’re battling everyday to be a certain dress size or to ‘look good’ in clothes then you’ve missed the point of all the other amazing things that your body allows you to do.
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