Perfect Goal or Natural Ideal?

I have been thinking about my initial goal weight, which I had set at 145 lbs. when I started IE. I now realize have been a too hard on myself these past few months. I was upset because I started weighing in around 151-153 after getting a new scale and a long summer of weighing in at 147-149. I felt like a failure, and I was secretly afraid that my weight would creep back up to 165. However, that has not been the case. It’s nearly February and my weight is still stable. In fact, my weight loss has been stable for over a year now. I am now beginning to think that I might be at or close to my body’s ideal natural weight.

I recently read an older IE book called “Seven Secrets of the Naturally Slim” and I think I have gained some very practical perspective from it. I am struck by the emphasis that book placed on one’s bodily uniqueness. No two people are exactly alike, so it is only to be expected that no two bodies will have the same metabolism or ideal shape. Short, tall, muscular, skinny, curvy– we don’t really get to pick these things. Which is why it would not make sense for me to think I should look like Gwenyth Paltrow (random example) at my ideal weight. I am tall and athletic with much more muscle than Gwen. I would literally need to starve my feminine curves and muscle mass away to look like her, not even taking into account the fact that my medium mass bone frame is probably larger and heavier than hers.

An acquaintance of mine recently lost about 50 pounds in six months by counting calories. She is tall and medium/light boned and now weighs about 125 at 5′7″. I would never tell her, but I don’t think this new weight looks good on her. Her bones now protrude from where she once had curves. She’s lost most of her muscle mass and now appears to wear an AA cup instead of a C. When she was overweight or normal weight, her pixie face had a soft, angelic appeal. Now her cheeks are sunken and her skin isn’t bright like it was. She doesn’t look like a lean, fit model. She literally looks like skin and bones in her new size zero dresses.

Now, when she first posted on her Facebook page that she hit 125, I was envious. That always seemed like the perfect weight to me, and it was always far below whatever I was able to achieve in my dieting days. I had never seen my weight dip below 147, even on a very restrictive diet. On the other hand,  I have weighed in at 146 while being on IE. I digress.

I guess my point is, I never want to be as bony and thin as the girl I know. That is not me and that does not look healthy to me at all. I like my curves, my muscles, my breasts. I have fully realized now that “perfect goal weights” aren’t the same thing as “happy, healthy, attractive weights.” I have been slightly obsessive over a number that does not represent my body with any justice.  125, 130, or even 135 would be a terrible mistake for me. I will not sacrifice my healthy tissues, my temple to blindly forge my way to a number that simply looks good on paper.

I have forgotten that my body is unique and that I should treat it as such. Just because many other people don’t have “summer” and “winter” weights does not mean that I won’t. My seasonal weights have fluctuated by about 5lbs. for as long as I can remember. I am done obsessing over the scale and playing the comparisons game. I will continue to weigh infrequently, but those numbers will no longer dictate my sense of success. My actions, my health, and my mirror will.

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