Happy-fat

I’ve realised of late that right now, I’m fat. I’m not the biggest I’ve ever been, but I’m bigger than I am most often. My clothes don’t quite fit as nicely – or rather, lie as smoothly – as they could and have in the past. My waist isn’t as small, nor my legs as shapely, as they used to be.

My weight has fluctuated hugely for as long as I can remember. I have always been on the bigger end of the spectrum, but how much bigger can change practically overnight. Dapper himself has commented on the way that I can change shape entirely in the space of a weekend – normal on a Friday, whale-like by Saturday night, deflated by Sunday morning, often dependent entirely on what we’ve eaten.

But just now my core weight is higher than I’d usually like. There are various reasons for this, including the complete lack of walking – my favoured exercise – in my daily routine and my desk-bound job, and my change in diet thanks to my weekends being spent with Dapper – who eats more proper cooked meals than I usually would, and who I can rival in a lasagne eating contest, much to my waistline’s despair. All of which calls for some changes in routine if I’m going to get back to feeling fit…

But this isn’t a blog post about my weight loss routine. It’s a blog post about attitudes. Because just as mine has changed over the past year with regards to my body image, it has also changed with regards to the excess weight I carry. Today I stand before you, a size 14-16 (usually 14 now, I confess, thanks to vanity sizing) and comfortable in my skin. No, that’s not right, I am not “comfortable in my skin” – it’s far more specific than that suggests: I am comfortable in my flab. All of it. The love handles on my hips. The rounded belly (gotta love a rounded belly), even my much maligned flabby thighs. And it’s not a matter of grudging acceptance, nor one of self-love, but one of seeing them for what they are and being happy in that. “Happy” being the key word…

Because when we start looking at reasons for my weight gain, that word is really what it’s all about. I’m not saying that I’m thin when I’m miserable, nor suggesting that I don’t comfort eat (man, do I ever comfort eat!). Just that my current size comes down to the simple truth that I am happy. And I imagine that it is because of that fact that my shape doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it has in the past – the fat is a symptom of my happiness, and that makes it impossible to feel upset about!

I am hopeful that the fact that it is happiness fat will make the weight a little easier to shift – particularly as Dapper and I are both feeling strain on our waistlines, and can therefore act together accordingly… Either way, it’s a new experience for me, to be unhappy about my weight purely for reasons of physical fitness rather than of self-esteem. I must admit, it’s an improvement I approve of!

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7 thoughts on “Happy-fat

  1. I hear you on the happy fat. I’ve been putting weight on ever since being married, but the most important thing is to be healthy and happy. X

  2. When I wanted to get in shape for the wedding (and I have to say, I worked HARD) one of the things that made a huge difference was walking (I’m talking 3/4 hrs here, not a piffly walk to the corner shop) with my husband. Well, then fiance! Doing something together, the opportunity to talk, enjoying the scenery. I have some lovely memories of many moonlit walks in 2009 🙂

    I find it hard to motivate myself lately because N has got so into his cycling, and coming home caked in mud after cycling up a mountain doesn’t do it for me. It’s a strange one though because I have no objection to him going cycling, yet I really don’t want to exercise without N, or rather, spend time without him. Doing things together is one of the best parts of any relationship, and why not exercise?

    For what it’s worth, I honestly have only thought how lovely you look lately, all glowy and happy. Not a thought has crossed my mind about your weight. You’re one of the most beautiful people I know, and that’s really all I see xxx

    • Aww, thank you darling – you’re too sweet. as I say, it’s not really about feeling fat and unattractive, but about the fit of my clothes, and the weight on my feet (heels become so much less of an issue when you’re slimmer!).

      Agree about the walking though – I LOVE to walk (properly I mean) and it is something Dapper and I want to build more of into our exercise routine. And we’re talking proper walking – like the 5 hours we would spend out in the Warwickshire countryside on a sunny Saturday last year. Am really looking forward to it tbh! xxx

  3. Well, you were looking fabulous the other week – Carys is right, you have a wonderful happy glow! But also, I did not notice clothes sitting anything less than perfectly.

    But I know just what you mean about happy fat – I’ve piled on the weight since meeting N – and about the revelation that comes when you’re trying to lose weight for health reasons, rather than for self esteem reasons. I’m finding it easier; because I’m eating less and moving more because I like myself and want to feel better in myself. It feels like a positive choice, not a punishment.

  4. I totally second these sentiment by Carys:

    “For what it’s worth, I honestly have only thought how lovely you look lately, all glowy and happy. Not a thought has crossed my mind about your weight. You’re one of the most beautiful people I know, and that’s really all I see xxx”

    I’m fed-up with the modern unhealthy obsession with sizes, ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods, well-meaning parents who never give ice-cream or sweets to their children (I personally know a few of these) and such like. Food is one of life’s greatest pleasures and I think it should be treated as such. I try my very best to pass on the same attitude to my children. My 8-year old daughter will hopefully never hear the word ‘diet’ from my mouth. I used to be thin 10 years ago and didn’t feel as attractive as I feel now, at forty, a few pounds heavier yet much more comfortable in my skin. And other people respond to how you feel not the size you are. I’ve learnt that by experience.

    I know two moms here – one, so happy and has such a wonderful relationship with her teenage children. They all have a great attitude to food. The other, obsessively diets and by her own admission, is cranky because she often doesn’t eat enough. Yes she’s slim, but at what price? I’ve seen her getting annoyed with her children for the smallest of reasons. Her children don’t seem to share a close bond with her. Who do I think is the more beautiful of the two? Definitely not the thin one.

    Moral of the story: I’d much rather be lumpy and bumpy and feel beautiful and happy than look thin and cranky.

    I feel so strongly about the subject that I could go on and on. And please don’t take this as a tirade against thin women, because it is not – it’s against the modern assumption that only thin is beautiful.

  5. The best thing about my body is my once flat and now stretched and saggy tummy. Because it was caused having my baby.

    Now when I knew you at school I’d have never said that. I think age and experience brings happiness size 8 jeans never could.

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