So Post weekend Monday ‘weigh in’s’ have become a frequent feature of many PT plans + diet clubs.
Its no wonder weekend binges are a frequent precursor to the ‘start of a NEW diet’ when Monday morning beckons.
Clients who will then see Mondays as the day of doom due to the step off the scale arbitrarily imposed by a fat fighters slimming group, and the sign of a number going up.
Now with over 50 Mondays in any one year-
I’d like to pose the question -
is it possibly to step off that scale-GAIN WEIGHT and be HAPPY (as opposed to self loathing and filling the rest of your week with angst).
Well believe me when I say YES. I am one of those such people and you can be too.
Now this is not to say that measuring or keeping on eye on your weight on a periodical basis is not beneficial. I have no doubt there are ‘some’ benefits to doing so. It is helpful to keep a rough track of this one measurement.
just to help us all keep ourselves in the picture of realism, and so we can enjoy life more without worrying that because we have gained an extra pound, the world as we know it has ended-here’s a quick check in to remind a few of us that the scales are not the be all and end all when it comes to 'end goals' with body composition. Weight gain does not always mean bad things. And for anyone looking to 'tone up' (i.e. most of the female population who I deal with)- then weight gain may actually be your friend.
Now above left is an image of me when I weighed in at circa 45kilos (sometimes much less than this pending water retention). Now at the time I was a keen dieter. I had tried every fad diet in the book (and from memory this even includes me living off anything ‘tomato based’ diet for a week- ; )- #donttrythisathomekids. I think I lasted a day. You will see from my body -ok I have the thigh gap- but I also have a slouched awkward posture. I have ‘a soft belly’ hanging off my skinny- physique. This body looks weak. Over the many years that followed- bread-wheat -gluten-diary-sugar-grains were struck from my food intake and this is the result.
Fast forward a number of years - ALOT of education and personal experimentation and image 2 see’s me at 54Kilos (this fluctuates from 1-2 kilos pending my training sessions and hydration).
Now this is almost a 10 KILO WEIGHT GAIN. Had you told the girl in the bikini shot I would gain 10 Kilos -I think I would have been still eating those tomatoes now. Every pound counted -in my head weight gain simply meant I would get fat.
I am lucky that I have got over a bit of a troubled mindset with food -fads and diets. Which I would like to share with you. Now I would also like to make it clear I am not and have not suffered from what I would call an eating disorder. THIS is from from my experience a very typical female viewpoint which I see day in day out.
Weight GAIN is almost always seen as a negative. As is eating bread, pasta, cheese or all of the nice things that this world has bestowed upon us. Regardless of the reality of what this means for happiness or health.
You will see from IMAGE 2- that I have now gained a considerable amount of muscle in comparison. Yes I am HEAVIER. But my BODY FAT has considerably reduced- this is fairly obvious from the image. I have GAINED LEAN MUSCLE. I have GAINED WEIGHT. I have done this through ‘ditching any diet’ and eating MORE food. The only food I will not eat now is turkish delight (which is as far as I am concerned is made by the devil himself)
I can categorically say I am 100% happier with my own physique and most importantly with how I view both my training and food habits.
So a few pointers to remember ladies when the scales go UP-why we don't need to start another DIET to get that thigh gap back.
Pick up the weights and add a Resistance based plan.
If you are following an exercise regime involving resistance training- Weight Gain can mean muscle gain. The more muscle you have, almost undoubtably , the better health you will have.
Postural issues can be improved through an improved stronger muscular structure - You will see how I hold myself is not only expressing more confidence but also is more balanced. This means I am less prone to injuries, aches and pains as I age. It also means I would, (in the event of any potential murderous attack) - be ‘harder to kill’. I no longer look weak.I am a more physically capable human being.
Weight is just a DIGIT.
Now scales can give data yes. But for anyone training regularly- (who is eating well and not seeing results on a scale)-TAKE YOUR MEASUREMENTS. Measure key parts of your body- measure the dress or trousers you want to wear. Measure other health markers-if they are all improving along with resistance training and weight gain then this is a GOOD SIGN.
-You can be skinny and still have excess fat on your body. Weighing less doesn't always mean that your body fat is down. Remember this when you plan your exercise training. The more body fat you have (no matter what you weigh)-the higher risk you are of poor health and disease.
Bread Doesn't Make you fat
You can get skinny or fat with bad nutrition. Likewise -you can gain or lose weight with good nutrition. Good or bad is subjective. At the end of the day your nutrition has to work with your individual metabolism-energy needs-activity level and goals. This varies for every single person.
The key to any ‘diet’ is one that is SUSTAINABLE, and benefits your individual HEALTH. Now that could mean you eat one piece of freshly baked bread every day. It could mean you never eat bread at all because YOU don't tolerate it well. My advice on this- EXPERIMENT and see what works for YOU. Don't give things up with no rational explanation other than a weight loss feature in a magazine. HIRE someone who can work with you on a focused nutrition plan.
-If you are relying on diets and weight loss to ‘tone up’ then RETHINK your plan. You will hopefully see from this image that MUSCLE TONE has come from significant resistance training and an increase in calories. My Weight Gain has made me Happy - : )
If you need help with exercise planning and nutrition.
Get in touch with Jill at KettlebellWarriors@gmail.com