Diets: Part 2 – From A Non-Dieter’s Perspective

Let me talk you through how we do things here at Lagom Hue, or at least how things have gone so far. In January, we sat down and wrote a load of articles for February, in February we wrote a load of articles for March – you can see where this is going right?

Ok, it’s not always as far advanced as that. Emma hasn’t written the recipes out for this month yet (although one of them is already up – oh the joys of publishing a while after writing), but apart from that it’s pretty much done. It means all we have to think about is photography and then we’re good to go.

Today is the 2nd March. Emma’s at University and I’m meant to be planning April’s articles. In fact, I want to plan April’s articles. It’s clichéd and you’ve probably heard us say it too much on Facebook already but I’m really quite excited for April. But the truth is I have one article left to write for March. And yes, I’m putting it off. For once in my life, take that as sarcastic or not – completely up to you and dependant on my relationship with you, I’m struggling to write about myself.

Writing this article was completely my idea: a perspective of diets from someone who has never dieted before. If you haven’t, then before delving any further into this article you need to read Emma’s take on the subject. Emma is unquestionably more trained in this area than I, and can actually talk about it without sounding too up on her own high horse. But I’ll give it a go.

I’m not happy with how much I weigh. If I honestly look back over my life, I don’t think there are many periods where I have been. I’m not slim. I don’t see myself as physically attractive and I do carry around too much weight. If I lay out all of my true feelings about it, I will admit to being insecure regarding it. (Admittedly, I’m also quite harsh to people who say they want to lose weight who I regard as skinnier than me, I apologise – it’s your body and if you want to lose pounds then you should try).

Yet I’ve never dieted. I’ve never made an active push to rid myself of any excess weight. Instead, I’ve allowed my body to fluctuate; sometimes I’ll be a 34, sometimes a 36. (That’s trouser waist size for you women out there.) My worst was when I reached a 38, thankfully I am back down to a 34, and the 34s I’ve had for a while I have to wear a belt with.

With new trousers, I’m realistically a 35. The 34s are too uncomfortable before they’ve been washed; the 36s are way too big. I do the classic thing of buying the smaller size and letting the wash loosen them for me. Ah, it makes me feel slightly better about my stomach.

I’m insecure about my whole body. I absolutely hate the idea of swimming around friends because I don’t like people I know seeing my chest. I very rarely take my top off, and get shy around men who do because I envy their confidence. And now are you starting to get a feel for why I didn’t want to write this? This is quite hard for me to admit, I’ve spent years putting up a façade of confidence to people. People at work think I’m the smiley one, my friends see me as the loud one. I’ve always been loud and smiley, but the truth is they are just fronts to cover my insecurities regarding my body and my personality.

The situation is a whole lot deeper though. Take social situations, where naturally I’m far from comfortable anyway, I spend days afterwards analysing every second of them. I usually forget the good things, and convince myself that the tiniest of negatives mean that everyone hates me. Even now, I’m regretting writing this. Because I feel like people might read this thinking I’m expecting sympathy and everyone to write comments about how much they like me. Fishing for likes, that kind of thing. It’s not; I’m merely trying to explain to you how my brain works.

Diets. I need to take this back to diets. People diet for many reasons; one of them is to build self-confidence. And I’ve considered it. I’ve read about many diets, looked at them all at one point or another and always come to the same conclusion. They wouldn’t work; I would sink back and feel worse for it.

I’m also, and this is probably more crucial, the fussiest of eaters.

If we went through them: Atkins is a non-starter, I love carbs too much, clean eating involves too many nuts, fasting myself for two days sounds awful, cleansing is really not my thing and I can’t weigh myself around people I don’t know.

So, with that in mind, I’ve always decided never to diet. Don’t get me wrong, I see the benefits of the diets and I applaud people who can keep them up. I love reading success stories regarding them because at the end of the day, I want everyone to be happy with whom they are.

But, like Emma, I’ve slowly reached the same conclusion regarding diets. That diets aren’t good, lifestyle changes are. My self-confidence has grown exponentially since I met Emma. She’s made me feel more comfortable in my own skin and has slowly changed the way I eat and exercise so that I can reach a healthy medium. And, as a result of that, I’m starting to find a place I’m more comfortable in.

I’ll never be truly happy with my body, I’ll never be confident in front of people I don’t know so you start to question why bother trying to be? Especially when I’ve found an area, a part of life, which I am happy with. I don’t pump awful food into my body day after day, and my active-ness means I’m unlikely to die young so I needn’t think of dieting right? As long as I maintain this happy balance I have now, I should be fine. Of course, maintaining is harder than finding, so I’ll keep you updated with how I’m doing.

Looking back at all this, it really wasn’t that hard to admit. And I reckon most people could probably tell anyway. If anyone knows me, they might question why I’m not writing about sport all the time – after all, that’s what I want to do with my life. The answer is in this piece. I’m not a confident person, but maybe if I opened up about my insecurities, I could be. This post might just be the first step.

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