Healthy Vegas Vegan: Why I’m Happier Over My Goal Weight

I’m thrilled to publish this guest post from a fellow blogger who has had body image issues, but who has emerged stronger and wiser because of them. I really identify with the reasons that Adria gives in this post about why she is happier being over her “goal” weight.

When I e-mailed Adria to let her know how much I liked her post, I expressed that while I’m still getting used to the weight that I’ve gained in recent months, I do feel that I’m making progress in finding that balance between not over-thinking what I eat and choosing the foods that benefit my health.

Ultimately, though, I feel TONS better not starving myself and giving myself the freedom to eat what and when I want, even if I’m not 100% perfect. Lesson for me: trying to be perfect means misery, but being kind and gentle with myself means peace. 

Please share your thoughts in the comments section and enjoy this insightful post from Adria!

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Hi! I’m Adria DeCorte, and I blog actionable advice and inspiration for simplifying clean living over at Healthy Vegas Vegan. When I read Carrie’s recent posts about disordered eating, they struck a chord with me. Her words rang true to my own struggles as a recovering food perfectionist.

And it’s a trend I see in many of the vegan women I coach. My wellness clients are beautiful, wonderful women. But, like many of us, they have a history of reaching for an unattainable ideal. I guide them to relax perfectionist tendencies and realize how amazing they already are.

Sure, cleaning up my diet and lifestyle to release 40 pounds was the best thing I ever did for myself. But in case you struggle with some of the same issues as Carrie and me, I want to share how gaining 10 pounds above my “goal” weight has helped me find that crucial but elusive balance between self-care and body-love.

I found that when I was trying to perfect my body, every little thing that didn’t fit my vision of perfection bugged me. Now at 10 pounds heavier, I still have the same thigh jiggle, just on a little bit bigger thighs.

I’m learning to love my body as is.

Adria 10 lbs heavier

Here are a few reasons I’m happier being over my “goal” weight:

  1. It’s easier to maintain.

    From a history of calorie counting, I’ve finally trained myself to listen to my body’s signals. I still eat a clean diet of whole plant foods, but I don’t feel the need to tightly control everything anymore. After loosening up, I was surprised to stabilize at a healthy weight. Frankly, no one else notices the difference.

  2. I can eat the delicious (vegan) treats my sister makes.

    I’m less strict with my diet which means allowing myself occasional indulgences like the cinnamon rolls she made from scratch recently! It’s helped me to see past rules and build a healthier relationship with food.

  3. I fill out my clothes more.

    I have a naturally boxy figure so I don’t mind having more lady curves. ;) As an added female-specific bonus, the extra body fat helped my hormones balance out and finally stabilized my cycle.

  4. I don’t weigh myself every day anymore.

    This is huge! Before I was so scared of gaining weight back that I would weigh myself every morning so I could catch it early. This often led to starting my day with a mood-killer if I was “up”. Now, using the scale is an occasional thing, and, to be honest, I avoid it as often as possible.

It’s time for us to get comfortable in our own skin, whatever size that may be.

Yes, go ahead and clean up your diet, get fit, and lose a little weight if need be. Especially if it makes you feel sexier and increases your quality of life.

But, please don’t obsess over it. And, don’t worry if your healthy natural weight ends up being more than your “goal” weight.

Since I love Carrie’s blog and community, I’m happy to share the following recipe from my cookbook: Quick and Dirty Clean. Combining healthfulness with indulgence, this simple two-ingredient blend will definitely make you want to eat more greens! To make it even easier, thaw out frozen mango and use pre-packaged salad greens mix.

Sweet Tangy Salad Dressing - Healthy Vegas Vegan

Photo by Todd Moore

Sweet and Tangy Salad Dressing
 
Author:
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ red bell peppers, coarsely chopped
  • 1 ½ cups mango flesh (peeled and pitted)
  • Small handful chives (optional)
Instructions
  1. Blend the bell pepper, mango, and chives until creamy. Add water (or lemon juice) as needed if you desire a thinner dressing. Done!

Thanks to Carrie for allowing me space to talk about this key issue. Come say hi over at Healthy Vegas Vegan where I help vegan women fall in love with their bodies through nourishing foods and self-compassion.

Comments

  1. says

    When my husband and I started a nutritarian lifestyle (aka “Eat to Live”) last August, I told him that my goals were very simple: If I lost 10 pounds, I’d be happy. If I lost 20 pounds, I’d be ecstatic. And if I lost 30 pounds, I’d be downright content.

    Well, it’s leveled off at 40 pounds, the weight I was in my mid-20s, and it turns out to be true. By setting my own expectations of possible goals, I was able to feel good about where I was at any point, with further surprise and delight at the next.

    FWIW,
    Stephen

    • says

      I’m so happy to hear about your success, Stephen, but mainly that you have found your own way without setting up unreasonable expectations for yourself. Yay!!! :)

  2. Roxanne Rit says

    Oh yes, this post and Carrie’s journey so resonate with me. I am thankful others walk before me so I can learn. I have had an incredible weight loss following ETL the last 2 years but am also not yet close to my “goal weight.” But, who decides this? I am letting go of this and am just enjoying my stronger, healthier yet still curvy new body. I am focused on being healthy, fit and happy this summer and trying all kinds of new adventures instead of focusing on “goal weight” (although I still weigh myself once a week to remain accountable).

    I also had to pull back on the number of hard core vegan or nutritarian inputs I was receiving as it made me obsessive or feel bad about not “doing enough.” I have learned what I need to for now and just need to keep practicing and being gentle.

    I also liked the comment Carrie made in a previous post about labels and identity (vegan, 100%, nutritarian, etc.). I am just eating as healthy as possible to fuel my body and keep animal products at a minimum for many reasons.

    Thanks to you Carrie for always bringing an authentic, real, and kind gentle voice with no judgments. We each need to find our own paths but it sure helps to get your thoughts for affirmation! Thank you for the work you do…

  3. Shari says

    Really, who decides this “goal” weight anyway? Those ridiculous weight charts in doctors offices are just that – RIDICULOUS! If I followed them I should weigh about 125 pounds. At 5’3″ I weigh around 148 and wear size 8 pants. Should I be forced to believe that I’m obese if I’m not a size 4? Considering I was once 297 pounds and wearing a size 28,I feel I’ve attained my goal. What’s more is that is isn’t just a number, I’m healthy, fit and active. In my mind, I’ve achieved my goal. One should always have goals and mine now is to work toward a higher level of fitness. Forget the scale everyone and be comfortable and confident!

  4. Dee says

    Thank you so much for your words! I have been struggling getting ready for my wedding and feeling that I need to be perfect. Regardless of the mess-ups that have occurred I was still consistent. I’m not where my “goal” was, but I’m happy where I am. And I realize that my honeymoon should be filled with happiness of where me and my future husband are rather than stressing over where I wish I could be.

    Love you guys!

    • says

      Thank you so much for commenting, Dee. First off, congratulations on your wedding. Getting ready for such a significant event is stressful enough, without the added pressure of changing your diet and/or body. I remember thinking that I was going to lose weight before my wedding, and then I realized that my husband and I loved each other for our personalities and compatibility…the outside appearance was just part of the initial attraction. :0) We’ve been together for 16 years now and, while our outsides have gotten a bit more “worn” and have certainly changed during that time, we love each other more than ever based on those long-lasting values. So, I am thrilled that you are feeling content and excited for a wedding and honeymoon that is sure to be filled with joy and love. My very best to you!!!

  5. says

    Carrie – thank you for sharing this guest post with us!
    Adria – thank you so much for your honesty on this. I’ve been struggling with my weight for a couple of years now and I’m trying to just let it go and be happy where I am. It’s hard, but it’s nice to see others who have had similar struggles and have found happiness with their bodies just as they are. I look forward being happy with my body, but I’m not quite there yet.

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