Thursday, April 2, 2009

WIC & Weightloss

I don't have time to write a long post about this because I am supposed to be researching feminist legal theory for a 30 page paper that is due at 3pm. Nonetheless, facebook is pushing me over the edge.
I have thus far not put ads on this blog, mostly for one reason - I know it would attract wedding related weightloss adds and I'm not having any of it.
I knew a girl who bought her wedding dress four sizes too small to give her "incentive" to lose weight. It didn't work, and I'm pretty sure she was out $1000 over the dress.
I'm going to say, flat out, that I do believe in weight loss. I believe in excercise, and eating right, and being healthy at every size. But I believe in reaching self-acceptance about the weight that you can maintain, and not hating yourself if it happens to be bigger than somebody else. At some point I will post before and after pictures of my own weight loss and discuss it in more detail, but I will say this - when my sister got engaged, I felt self-conscious about being the largest girl in the bridal party, and that was what it took for me to get my rear in gear and start eating right and exercising effectively. A year later, I was still the biggest girl in the bridal party (they were both zeros) but I felt perfectly happy with myself. An event like a wedding can be a good incentive to make healthy changes or finally lose that weight you've been trying to lose - but be careful.
Here's the thing - most brides who want to use their wedding as incentive get engaged and say "this will make me lose weight for the wedding." Then they don't do anything, except, maybe, as the girl I know did, buy their dress in a too-small size. Then the month before the wedding, they start to go on a drastic starvation diet and force themselves into a dress that is too small. This isn't healthy.
If you are planning to lose weight for your wedding, be sensible about it. Consider your body now and your wedding date. Consider that healthy weightloss is 1-2lbs a week, but in reality, that may not happen. Set a realistic goal weight. Develop healthy habits that won't end on the wedding day. You don't want to be looking back on your wedding pictures and saying, "man, I wish I was still that skinny." Or saying, "I don't remember this happening because I was so lightheaded from not eating for four weeks."
Also consider this: don't use the wedding as a deadline. For example, I would like to lose 15lbs. But I'm not saying, "well, by my wedding, I'll lose 15lbs." That gives me, essentially, too much time. If I was 2 weeks away from the wedding, I would say, "I want to lose 15lbs" but then not actually do it, and after the wedding, I might give up because I don't have a "reason" to lose it anymore. Lose weight for yourself, not for your dress, the pictures, your mother who calls you fat at the bridal salon (yeah - I saw this once.) Live for yourself every day, not for your wedding day.
Chances are though, you are pretty happy with how you look - considering you look the way you do every day and haven't considered changing it. That is, until the WIC got its hands on you and started pushing diets and beauty advice and teeth whitening strategies on you. So if you don't already have a total beauty routine that includes an hour at the gym and a perfect skin care regimen, but you are satisfied with the way you look, don't worry about it. You are beautiful, you will be beautiful when you get married, and you do not need to get your teeth chemically whitened or your skin chemically colored to look good.
And for heaven's sakes, if you want to lose weight, get a doctor, personal chef, or personal trainer - don't click on those ads on Facebook!

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