Even Thin Girls Have to Diet

Exercise this week:

  • Monday – Ran for 50 minutes
  • Tuesday – Walked for 60 minutes (to work and back)
  • Wednesday – Walked for 40 minutes (around neighborhood)
  • Thursday – Walked for 60 minutes (nature trail near house)
  • Friday – Planning a run later this afternoon

Food was fairly well on track this week, I allowed myself some leeway in the evenings to have a glass of wine or a cocktail on 3 evenings this week. That’s probably all I’ll imbibe this week. My calorie totals didn’t exceed 1800 for any single day (which makes the net even better after exercise is factored in). All in all, a pretty good week so far.

How are your numbers looking? You are tracking, aren’t you? If you’re not tracking…how can you be managing your weight?

I ask because I’m always curious if there are people who can manage a healthy weight without any tracking effort at all. I used to think that some people were naturally thin and didn’t have to make any effort (this was when I was obese) and of course I felt that life was terribly unfair to me since I was naturally overweight. But then as I started managing my weight I realized through talking about it with some of my “naturally thin” friends that they were, in fact, also working at managing their weight. This was a huge revelation to me. I thought it was completely effortless for them and they were just lucky (bastards!). Mostly they weren’t, mostly they were working at it every day. Which made it all the more difficult for them to endure vilification from those who were overweight.

Come on, you know exactly what I mean. When I was overweight I sometimes hated those thin people. They would talk about going on a diet and I would just roll my eyes and think, “Oh please, like you have to diet.” What I didn’t realize, and maybe would have if I had opened an honest discussion with them (which I didn’t because I hated them because I was jealous of them) was that their answer, had I asked the question, would have been, “How do you think I got this way? How do you think I stay this way?”

When I figured this out I felt a lot of guilt and embarrassment for my previous feelings. I didn’t know, because they mostly didn’t talk about it. I mostly don’t talk about it either now (except here, online – almost never in person) because it’s hard not to sound judgmental or preachy, and that’s not the goal, for me or anybody else I know. But what I’ve since discovered is that the only difference between me and those naturally thin people was they figured it out earlier. They knew that having a healthy, fit, active body wasn’t a right we are all born with but an on-going project that requires effort and maintenance. I only wish I’d known sooner.

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9 Responses to “Even Thin Girls Have to Diet”

  1. Trystan Says:

    This becomes clear sometimes when you read about celebrities & their absolutely insane exercise & diet regimes. Hours per day with a personal trainer, & meals so restricted, my mind blows a gasket just considering it. So, duh, of course they’re rail-thin! Not exactly something to envy, but it does give a little perspective.

    • Laina Says:

      I know! There was a big hullaballoo over Lady GaGa’s tweet about “PopStarsDon’tEat” and I was like, “DUH!” don’t know why that’s news all of a sudden – nobody who looks like that got there without a hell of a lot of work!

  2. Laura Langford Says:

    I am not ‘technically’ fat, but having a combination of being overly sensitive to body changes and having non-clinical, self-diagnosed body dysmorphia (I really can’t tell what I look like), that yes, there is a lot of work involved in staying thin or thin-ish, Right now I feel pretty good, I’m exercising, and I just finished lunch (wilted kale, tofu, sunflower seeds and seaweed with sesame soy dressing). But I have months of not being able to control myself, and all I can think about is melted cheese and self-loathing. Yes, it’s a struggle, and it’s hard if one doesn’t ‘look the part’ but feels it — no one sympathizes and I have to monitor my mouth to NEVER complain about weight in front of those who truly are struggling with obesity. Cuz I look like a jerk even I feel the exact same lack of self control.

    • Laina Says:

      That one of the things I’ve really found interesting (and depressing) – I spent my youth being really overweight and hating the thin people who I thought had everything. And then I lost the weight and realized, jeez, I can’t talk about what I’m doing without people who don’t know my history giving me a verbal smackdown – just like I used to do. It’s been a really interesting wake-up to see both sides. NOBODY is comfortable with this topic, and EVERYBODY has something to contribute! And that you just can’t tell what somebody’s struggle and path has been by looking at them.
      Also, your lunch sounds pretty great. 🙂

      • Andrew Says:

        “I can’t talk about what I’m doing without people who don’t know my history giving me a verbal smackdown ”

        This! Commenting on issues that can be quite personal and sensitive wihout thinking is where I personally get honked off. I feel folks should slow down and really try and imagine how things might look from the other persons side of the world. Of course that means I should be more understanding when I am commented upon and not get honked off right? Ah life is a process no?

        Of course I talk to people about their bodies almost every day, add in my health history [which you know and I will elaborate on for others should you wish] and I am pretty opinionated.

      • Laina Says:

        But you know, it doesn’t actually bother me when somebody who doesn’t know me comments, because 1) I completely, deeply, intensely know where they’re coming from and 2) it gives me a chance to explain where I’m coming from and Be Inspiring. Usually if somebody is giving me crap for dieting because I’m “already thin” I whip out my before picture (which I conveniently carry in my wallet) and we have an educational conversation which is helpful to them and fun for me.

  3. bluezy Says:

    If I keep my meals familiar, I then am well acquainted to what it will be. Love the handy dandy internet tools and celly apps when I need them.

  4. Katherine Baluta Says:

    I try really hard to avoid scales, they make me feel a kind of desperation I’m not comfortable with, remind me of a me that’s out of control – but I can tell when I have to jump up and down to get my jeans on it’s time to cut down again. Age-related weight gain due to a slowing metabolism was a big shock, as was moving in with a roommate whose cooking is fabulous but a disaster calorically. I’m thrilled with this California veggie/fruit availability, it’s easy to stay full of the right kinds of foods for me. What works for me is a lot of rice, steamed veggies, and fresh fruit. All those things are readily available here. Living at John’s I have nearly got back to my pre-Seattle-new-roomie-weight without really dieting, and that feels wonderful. Plus everyone’s so active here, I can always find someone to take a walk with me. Yay!

  5. Denise Says:

    I just stumbled across your blog while doing research to help my husband loss weight. He has struggled with his size ever since I met him – his main problem revolves around food (overeating at night after a day of light to no eating).

    I, on the other hand, have been at a healthy weight for most of my life. While I don’t consider myself “thin” most people tell me I’m tiny. The truth is probably in the middle – athletic and petite at 5’2″ and somewhere between 117 and 123 lbs.

    How do I maintain my size even after two kids? I don’t track like you talk about in this post, but I do work my butt off during home workouts (at least 1 hour) 6 to 7 times a week. Food has always been my issue because I tend to overeat – sugar is my weakness. However, I have managed to not count calories by trying to eat a balance of foods everyday. If I arrive at the end of the day without consuming a fruit or vegetable than that’s my evening snack. And I almost never eat out.

    Naturally, everyone thinks my size comes easy to me. In part because I ate cake at a birthday party while the dieters refused. What they don’t understand, as they all whisper about how lucky I am that I have such a high metabolism, is me sweating off the extra calories at my morning workout.

    Staying healthy is about balance – no matter how big or small you are.


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