How to deal with weight gain during recovery can be one of the hardest things to do. I’m not going to say it’s easy at all, because your mind will try and play tricks on you to make you relapse. If you’re trying to recover from an eating disorder and even trying to get your period back, it’s crucial to put on some healthy weight. What’s healthy weight? It’s different for every single one of us. There isn’t a magic number that everyone recovering from an eating disorder need to gain. Only your body knows.
How to deal with weight gain is hard!
Because I know how hard it is to deal with weight gain, I decided to share my own story of how I gained 25 lb of not only body weight but also freedom and happiness. I’ve shared in other videos, how obsessed I used to be with working out and struggled with orthorexia. I thought that exercising as much as I could and eating as healthy and as little as I could would be the best thing I could do for my health and my body. I had to work so hard at maintaining my skinny figure and I was tired all the time. I thought that’s what my whole life was about. Just live to be skinny. Always stress about calories. Always work out. I identified myself to this unrealistic, unnatural body I had developed.
How to deal with weight gain – it gets easier
My lowest weight was 105 lb. I’m 5’7, so that was very unnatural for me to be at this weight. I never weigh myself, but the last time I was at the doctors office and got weight I was around 130 lb. That’s a 25 lb difference. You can see the difference in the pictures. And even though 25 lb sounds like a lot of weight to gain, I actually have gained healthy fats with muscle! (thanks to strength training and lifting weights) I haven’t gained 25 lb of fat! You know why? Because I learned how to workout right, how to eat well, how to rest more – basically found my own happy balance in order to be NATURAL and happy. I now exercise half the amount of time that I used to workout, about 30-50 minutes 4-5 times a week. I eat almost the double amount of calories I used to eat. Yes, I eat very nourishing foods most the time but I also allow myself all the freedom around food I can have. I let myself have whatever I want, whenever I want it. This way of living is almost effortless for me. I’m at a healthy weight because I don’t strive to look as skinny as possible. I love my body more now than I ever have.
I think what made it possible for me to stop fearing weight gain was to first of all JUST ALLOW myself to explore my fear foods. I allowed yourself to eat more of healthy foods too. Once I noticed that nothing drastically/scary happened I kept on being more free around food. Then I started to stop being so controlling when it came to exercising a specific amount of time every day. I cut down a lot. I didn’t see the ‘horrible’ results I was expecting at that point either. In fact, I only started to love the changes I was starting to notice in my body. And that really encouraged me, because even when I was super skinny I hated my body! I was just always too scared to gain weight, so it was almost easier/safer for me to stay skinny. I was too afraid that I’d gain a ton of weight, which I know you fear as well! The fact that I started to love the changes in my body, only made my weight gain easier AND it made me realize that I didn’t need all the things I was doing before. I don’t need hours of exercise and the most perfect diet to look in a way I didn’t even used to like. Now that I’ve found my happy balance, I only wish I could’ve done this sooner!
The best tip I can give on how to deal with weight gain is
To never weigh yourself! Honestly, weighing yourself is the worst thing you can do. I only know my weight by accident. Next time I go to the doctor I’m going ask them to not tell me the number on the scale. And that was a few months ago. I don’t know the exact number I am right now, because it doesn’t mean anything! I could be 125 lb, I could be 132 lb. Either way those numbers are pointless as long as you feel good. Overtime you’re thinking about over exercising or under eating, just think about what a waste of time that is. Think about all the other important things in your life, that you haven’t given much attention, because your eating disorder or exercise addiction hasn’t allowed you to focus on anything else than them!
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