dieting, weight loss and being body positive | www.sugercoatit.com

The week I got home from Melbourne I felt like rubbish. Months, literally, of late nights, partying, eating poorly and little to no exercise had caught up with me and I was wrecked. It took me a while to acknowledge that I wasn’t taking care of myself. I wasn’t doing what I know to do to keep myself running at my best. So, I started an exercise and eating plan.

Some people, they would call it a diet.

GASP.

Especially from those who just weeks before listened to the SUGER+INK episode where I proudly declared myself a diet industry drop out. Not for me, I adamantly said. And I stand by that. But how, right? How can mere semantics declare that this is a diet, indicative of an industry that has profited off the bullshit message served to women for decades, over a not-diet “plan”.

Well, my friends, words have power, that’s how.

Diets don’t work. They literally don’t work. The proof is in the multi-million dollar, fat-free, chemical ridden pudding. So when I tell you I’m not dieting, I’m not because I say I’m not. The plan I am on has rules (no booze, less coffee, more greens) I refuse to let it rule my life or emotions and I refuse to not be flexible with those rules. Because this isn’t crime and punishment, this isn’t about forcing my body to change, this is about loving it and supporting it to support me.

And that’s about all I’ll say about it. Because let’s face it, it’s really not that interesting. You know I’m into spinach, nothing to see here people. Moving along. 

There is a conversation happening on the interwebs at the moment about the conflicts between dieting, losing weight and being body positive. Heck, I’ve added to that conversation myself. It’s a complicated, continually discussed, type conversation akin to the should feminists wear makeup/bras/participate in patriarchal ideas. It’s interesting but we need to be careful to support each other’s choices when it comes to their body.

Always. Every single time.

So yes, while I agree that there are lines to be crossed from body positive to body shaming in weight loss and dieting conversations, it is your right, and mine, to have them. It is my right, if it happens, to lose weight in the quest for my own version of well-being. And it’s my right, and yours, not to.

There is a chance that I will lose weight. The way I was living previously caused enough bloating (hello diet of salt and champagne) that it would be impossible not to. Probably. But is my life going to end and the world stop if I don’t? Nope. Is it even really the focus? No, I weighed myself at one stage, I’m sure I’ll do it again. BUT I want to FEEL good. I want my body to wake fresh in the morning and sleep soundly at night.

I want good things for my body because I love it.

And when I say that I’m one hundred percent committed to people, myself included, being happy and at home in their bodies, I am. Because my body was angry at me, it was tired and at serious risk of breaking down. Don’t you think that it’s body positive to listen to that? I think so. I think if your body is giving you a cue to do ANYTHING that you’re ignoring, then you are on a dangerous road.

So there it is, my friends, my thoughts on such things. Are you interested in hearing more on this subject, I’d love to hear if I’m fulfilling a need here? I can’t guarantee if you’re not interested I’d stop talking, but well, you wouldn’t have excepted it any other way. Haha. Body love, dieting, and weight loss, let’s talk about it.

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  • Chel Pablo

    YAS!!!

  • Kace

    I had a shift in my mindset a few years ago by being involved in some of the curvy community online and it was other women that inspired me to make changes on my own terms, not doing it to please others or fit in. I was doing really well up until my twin babies were born and other things took priority (I definitely don’t blame them! But things naturally changed). I struggle to eat breakfast and lunch most days which I know is terrible… then I usually eat things I really shouldn’t just to fill myself up until I can have a decent meal. I’m really torn at the moment – beating myself up about my bad eating habits, but then also struggling to get the motivation/inspiration again. I know I feel great when I eat great. So I just need to get back into it and nurture my body. This topic is definitely something I’d love to read more of. I enjoy getting your blog updates in my email!

    • I always worry, and get sad let’s face it, when women are guilty, beating themselves up or struggling because their life has changed and their body too. Don’t give in to that feeling lady, you are doing the best you can, I know that without even knowing you and love and kindness is all your body needs. Thanks for your kind words, glad to be talking about things that are relevant and in need of conversation, for sure. x

  • Cinbec

    How is looking after your body not positive! Why is eating well and exercising a “diet”? Looking after yourself has to be a positive! Show me the monkey telling you that eating well is a diet and I will slap that little bugger! You go girl!

  • Renae

    Love these posts. My body is very cranky at me at the moment but I haven’t quite hit a turning point. It’ll come and I’ll be ready. Good article x

    • Thank you Renae. Sorry to hear you’re bod is being a cranky pants, haha, it happens to the best of us at one time or another. And like you said, the time will come. x

  • Tracey B

    I’m about to make some changes to my (bad) eating habits. I’ve had ongoing health issues for a while – chronic pain from a car accident and Hashimoto’s diagnosis a bit over a year ago to name just a couple. My excess weight doesn’t help in the pain department and certain foods are a no go with Hashi’s. My worst issue is that I don’t eat enough, often skipping meals and when I do eat, it’s often carbs.
    So the new plan which is going to be in place for the whole family will involve regular good protein – esp fish, more veggies and less carbs for me – the men of the house would flip if I cut them off from pasta, spuds and rice.
    I really need to be going gluten, dairy and sugar free for the Hashimoto’s disease, but I’ll take it one step at a time or I’ll just be setting myself up for failure. I just want to get my life back – sick of being tired, in pain and in a constant brain fog.
    Looking forward to shopping on Saturday and cooking much simpler, healthier food.

    • Keep it simple, my friend. Enjoy the process of cooking and the joy that can come from nourishing and feeding you and your family. I always point people towards Jamie Oliver and the sheer JOY that he exudes when it comes to food, but with such balance and humour. He’s a great role model for caring without guilt or angst. I wish you all the very best with your health concerns and I hope you find some relief in the changes you are making. x

    • Mahina Hathaway

      I recommend the Whole30 soooo much! Even if you dont actually do it for the whole 30 days, follow the IG accounts that share recipes or google Whole30 recipes. They are grain free, dairy free and sans processed sugar so they might be able to give you some awesome recipe inspiration.

  • Jenna

    Great read!! Thank you. I woke up this morning with yet another head ache (possibly stress or hormones but then I read this and though, my high sugar intake probably doesn’t help!) I’ve felt drained and so tired lately, even a little out of breathe without even doing much and you have made me wake up to myself. My poor body, I need to give it some TLC and start eating better… And exercising but let’s not get too carried away because I hate strict guidelines haha

    • Thank you and you’re welcome! Send your body some love Jenna, you’ll never regret making that decision in whatever form it takes. It’s taking such great care of you, start with a bit of love and see what shows up. 😉

  • Mahina Hathaway

    The word ‘diet’ tends to conjure up images of watching my Mum get weighed at Weight Watchers, the frozen WW meals that were in the freezer and meant that Mum couldnt eat with us, and the constant conversations Id overhear about Mum binge dieting to fit into a dress for a special occasion. I grew up hating diets because they meant one thing to me: that I had to change because how I was at the time wasnt good enough.
    In Feb last year, my husband and I did a 30 day eating plan called the Whole 30. Best thing we ever did! I didnt weigh myself once, we surrounded ourselves with people who supported us, we learned so much about how we eat, what we crave, what helps us to feel good and energised… And we lose weight!
    I think you summed it up when you wrote “I want good things for my body because I love it.” Thats the difference between losing weight by diets and losing weight by looking after yourself, I think. The motivation. Is it love? Or is it shame and dislike and hate? And no one can know that except you. Or me. Or whoever it is!

    • Dear lord lady, as always you have taken my thoughts and clarified them into a thoughtful, articulate comment. Thank you for being here. You are so appreciated. x

      I’m going to take a look at the Whole 30 thing, that sounds right up my ally. Mr Suger and I need to break some habits that aren’t serving us, and that sounds like a plan.

      • Mahina Hathaway

        I didnt sign up to the proper Whole30. I am not a fan of jumping on bandwagons and it just didnt fit me/us. And I printed out the guidelines, researched why the founder started it and adapted a little it to suit our lifestyle. It honestly changed the way we eat, even today almost a year later, and it taught me so much about my body’s cues and reactions to different foods. I learned that my sweet craving means that my body needs wholesome fats. I learned that homemade mayo is totally the bomb! And I learned that being happy with what I ate for me personally involved removing morality from my food. Chocolate isn’t naughty and kale isn’t good. Nourishing my body is the important part and I learned how to shed the guilt that I grew up with. We are going to do it again in February next year because it FEELS GOOD!

        • I love that. So much of the conversation around food is good and bad, clean or dirty, and all that. It’s nice for food just to be food. And we all know I’m a little partial to Kale. 😉 I’m going to check this out, I need a shift in how I think about food and maybe there’s something here for me.