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THE Weighty Issue: What is MY happy weight?

Posted May 17 2010 4:31pm

If you look at the history of my tumblr, I rarely talk about the ‘numbers.’  I haven’t posted how much I weighed before I started my running journey in January, nor what I weight now.  This was a conscious decision on my part, because weight wasn’t the main purpose of this tumblr blog.  Sure, I wanted to lose a few pounds at the start, but I knew that once I changed my diet and my exercise habits, my body would decide what my happy, healthy weight is.

However, it’s now over 4 months later, and I still don’t know what my happy weight is.  A happy weight could be many things; it could be:

  • the weight that “science” says I should be (the lowest weight in the “healthy” range of the BMI scale, the lowest weight in the “healthy” range of the body fat scale, the weight that a “happy weight” calculator says I should be, etc.)
  • the weight that my body wants to settle at
  • the weight that will allow me to wear anything I want without feeling self-conscious
  • the weight where I don’t feel as if I am starving myself
  • the weight my mom thinks I should be at
  • the weight my mom was when she got married

The list could go on and on.

In researching this area, I stumbled upon this calculator: Self.com’s Happy Weight Calculator .  It asks you a series of questions (height, age, frame size, how many days a week you work out, whether you are pregnant, whether you recently quit smoking, whether you have an obese sibling or parent, and whether you allow yourself treats) to determine a “happy weight.”  However, even this seemingly comprehensive tool confused me.  Why should my happy weight be more if I allow myself treats or have an obese sibling/parent?  Why should my happy weight be less if I work out more?  While the calculator told me that I am about a pound away from my happy weight, I found this number to be without any significant meaning.

I then looked for more information about happy weights, healthy weights, or racing weights (since I am attempting to turn myself into a racer).  I saw all sorts of advice, based on BMIs, body fat, or specific diets.  But all of it seemed to conflict with each other, so I got frustrated and gave up.

If you ask my mom, she would say that I need to stop losing weight.  Granted, I only weight a pound or two less than my college weight.  Yet, when I asked close friends and the boyfriend for reassurance that I didn’t look like a skeleton, they told me I looked healthy and toned.  Talk about confusing.

So what will I do?  NOT WORRY ABOUT IT!  Someday I’d like to get my body fat measured, since I think this is the most accurate way of determining a healthy weight.  But right now, that’s not in the cards.  Instead of focusing on my scale, this is what I focus on:

  • fitness goals (I dream of Sydney Bristow abs from Alias…

and toned Michelle Rodriguez arms…

and 8 minute miles)

  • eating healthfully most of the time, AND
  • determining what foods and activities make me feel my best.

I trust that my body will figure out what weight is good for it.  Because weight is just another number.

Posted 3 weeks ago
11 notes •
Tagged: weight , .
  1. thalassotherapie liked this
  2. queenoflean liked this
  3. brighteyedsurvival liked this
  4. veggielife said: The most interesting information I learned from that calculator is that I apparently have a small frame! That was rather shocking haha. Either that or I have disproportionately small wrists.
  5. chocolatecocoaaddict liked this
  6. healthandlove reblogged this from heyheyheatherk and added:
    It told me that I was too young at 20? thats disappointing
  7. carmina liked this
  8. heyheyheatherk reblogged this from notgivingup and added:
    Wow, mine was like 127 :o/ That’s un-fun… and seems unimaginable.
  9. notgivingup reblogged this from runtheline and added:
    Happy Weight is 155....HAPPY at 10-20lbs...height, with a...
  10. kateespencer liked this
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