So...you gained weight. Here’s how to move forward
So...you've gained weight. Maybe your clothes have been fitting differently, maybe you are slightly less confident when taking photos or maybe you haven't even noticed. But as soon as you get on a scale and have to look at the number directly, somehow gaining weight feels more real and more "wrong." But the truth is that everyone gains weight at some point, and it really isn't as big of a deal as it seems.
There are *tons* of reasons why you might have gained a few pounds that go way beyond the stereotypical explanations of being "lazy" or "not eating healthy enough." It is true that maintaining a healthy diet and exercising is important. However, as your body is developing and changing, you naturally gain weight. In fact, according to Fueling Teens, "normal weight gain in a teenager can be anywhere from 5-15 pounds in a year." Give yourself a break and realize that you may not be able to control what is going on as your hormone levels change and your body fills out. Of course you are going to weigh more than when you were 10 or 11!
But even if your weight gain is caused by an unhealthy habit, it's super important to realize that it doesn't mean that you are "fat" or need to lose weight ASAP. It can be easy to look at photos or videos from before your weight gain and compare them to your current body. But that's a negative thought pattern. Trust me, I've been there.
Here are some things you can do to start appreciating the body that does so much for you—even if you do have long-term goals to adopt healthier habits.
I’m here to build you up every. single. day!!♬ Bongo cha-cha-cha - Remastered - Caterina Valente
Follow body-positive creators on social media
Make sure that you are filling up your feed with creators who make you feel good about yourself and encourage you to live your best life at any weight. People like Brittani Lancaster post content showing you how to build a healthy relationship with food and feel confident in your own skin.
Give yourself treats in moderation
After finding out you have gained weight, it can be a natural reaction to overcorrect your eating habits and cut out all sugary treats. While that might cause you to lose some weight quickly, it is ultimately not very sustainable, and it may lead to you constantly craving junk food and feeling guilty about eating it. Instead, focus on eating generally healthy meals, and include a few small treats to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Limit the number of times you weigh yourself each week
It might sound ironic, but one of the best things you can do for your mental health is cutting back on the number of times you weigh yourself. Your weight can majorly fluctuate from day to day, and obsessing over a pound or two will drive you crazy. By only stepping on the scale every so often, you can focus on how your body feels rather than looking for validation on the scale. And that's so much more rewarding!
Ultimately, remember that you are beautiful and strong at any weight. Weight gain is nothing to be ashamed of, and it shouldn't stop you from enjoying your life and doing the things you want to do.
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