Don’t Feel Guilty If….You Love Your Body But Don’t Weigh 120 Lbs.

by Meredith on April 19, 2011 · 18 comments

I love to eat real food. I think that is perfectly evidenced on my blog where I rarely use low-fat substitutes or talk about nutrition. I bake with whole wheat, but I also use real butter and I’m not shy about my love for dessert. I embrace my curves. I don’t feel guilty about loving food and I don’t feel guilty for not being super thin.

There seems to be a “type” in the blogging world. You know her: skinny, beautiful, with a love for real food, the kind our grandmothers grew up eating. Giada de Laurentiis embodies this every day on the Food Network. I’m not trying to say there is anything wrong with this — they love real food but just happened to have a different metabolism than I do! — but I think it is important to recognize that you don’t have to fit in with this stereotype when writing a blog. I weigh about 50 pounds more than most bloggers and I still don’t apologize for butter and chocolate. I love my body. I’m realistic.

I think there is too much pressure to be this “perfect” blogger — the one who eats whatever she wants but is still skinny because of the ridiculous amounts of exercise she does. I don’t fit into that. (And I actually find it rather obnoxious when bloggers complain about having gained a little weight when they are already rather thin.)

I don’t feel guilty about loving my body, butter, and weight. It took a lot of work to get to where I am and I’m not one to forget that. I think that bloggers should strive to create their own voice and message and not fit into the stereotypes. Post an indulgent recipe, wear some stretchy pants after those cupcakes, and skip a workout, even if you are carrying an extra 20, 30, or 50 pounds. Body acceptance and love for butter isn’t exclusive to those who wear a size six.


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{ 17 comments }

Clash April 19, 2011 at 2:44 pm

Thanks that was a good post.

Val @ Balancing Val April 19, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Lovely post, Meredith!

I would say that I’m 20-30lbs over your average “fit blogger” but id be so miserable to change that and stay “thin”.

I adore food and took a leap to go to culinary school to follow this passion and for me that means eating more food then the average person and working out less because I have no time at this point in my life.

Its OK!! :D

:)

Shannon @ Freshman Yr of Life April 19, 2011 at 5:51 pm

Awesome post. I’m literally thinking at my desk thinking how I’d rather gouge my eyes out than go to the gym right now. I need to realize it’s okay to skip a day at the gym and not over think it.
Shannon @ Freshman Yr of Life´s last post ..Weekend Summary

Caitlin @ The Caitie Experiment April 19, 2011 at 7:16 pm

Thank you so much for posting this — I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting lately (both in life and on the blog) about societal pressures to be “healthy”, and how a huge part of health to me is a healthy mindset to love yourself the way you are! Over the past five years or so, I’ve really come to love myself, and my body, despite what others might think of as “imperfections” or “extra weight.” The response has been overwhelmingly positive, and it’s so refreshing to see so many other bloggers and readers out there who feel the same way!

Carolyn April 19, 2011 at 7:23 pm

What a great post! I often have to remind myself to be happy where I’m at — healthy, fit and curvy! I do try to get to the gym often, but there are some days where I’d just rather eat a pizza and tell everyone how great it was. Curves are wonderful and I’m glad they are getting the respect they deserve.

D April 19, 2011 at 8:16 pm

I agree with the idea behind this post, but I have to say, if a thin blogger wants to complain, you can’t call it obnoxious. To me, that just negates the whole philosophy behind these posts. You know, the whole “don’t feel guilty” thing. So that thin blogger should feel guilty and worried about being “obnoxious” if she complains about weight gain? I think that a post entitled “Don’t feel guilty if you DON’T love your body but you DO weigh 120 lbs” should be just as legitimate as this one. There’s so much crap in the health living blog world about how a number doesn’t mean anything and doesn’t dictate how you feel about your body. Does that not apply to all women, regardless of weight?

Rachel Wilkerson April 19, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I think that’s a really good point, and I think this goes back to what we’ve talked about before — how to complain on your blog without sounding like a spoiled white girl. Yes, everyone should be allowed to complain, but there is a way to do it without being obnoxious, and if you’re 120 pounds, unfortunately, you just might need to be a little more careful. (And I think that plenty of bloggers do it well!) I think when talking about weight gain, some self-awareness on the blogger’s part is important, regardless of her weight.
Rachel Wilkerson´s last post ..Living in Sin- Moving Too Fast

Meredith April 19, 2011 at 8:46 pm

Rachel, you took the words out of my mouth! I agree.

MelissaNibbles April 19, 2011 at 9:34 pm

I think I have to agree with D in some ways on this. I think weight gain is weight gain and it sucks no matter what size you are. Saying you have to be sensitive if you weigh 120 pounds because someone heavier might be reading it is a bit much. If you weigh 120 pounds and you gained 20 pounds, it fucking sucks and if you want to say so, you should be able to without having to worry about hurting people’s feelings. It’s one thing to complain about a 20 pound weight gain, it’s quite another to complain that Whole Foods was out of almond butter. And white girls aren’t the only thin people out there.

Julie @ Peanut Butter Fingers April 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm

i agree with all of these comments 100 percent! i’ve seen certain bloggers who are at a healthy weight talk about their desire to lose a few “vanity” pounds for themselves (and still be at a healthy weight!) in a respectful way, and still people are going to jump on them b/c it might offend those who think they already look great. i personally find that it makes them more relatable and likable even – if done in a way that’s not all “woe is me.” for me, i keep any discussions of weight off my blog b/c i’m not sure how to go about it in a way that won’t “trigger” some (<– my biggest concern) or rub some people the wrong way. plus, thanks to many blogs out there and a personal revelation thanks to my mom's battle w/ breast cancer, i do not focus on weight as much as i do my health. that being said, i know i've gained weight since i got married and it does suck when i try to put on a certain pair of jeans and i feel like i can't exhale… but, for me, i don't express that on my blog b/c i know people would be up my butt about it. and, really, i don't care that much anymore thanks to the perspective i've gained from blogging. long comment short – i agree with your comments! :)
Julie @ Peanut Butter Fingers´s last post ..When the Music Moves You

Erin April 20, 2011 at 5:22 pm

I really like the point of this. I do find it obnoxious that food is only enjoyed in the context of covering 10 miles a day, on many blogs. Everyone can enjoy real food, and it doesn’t need to be “earned.”

Nicole April 20, 2011 at 11:44 pm

I love posts that reinforce healthy body image. As far as I’m concerned we just can’t get enough of the healthy attitude. Thanks for the positive reinforcement! LOL, and I agree with Melissa saying how it’s silly to complain about the small things, but OK to share your frustrations about weight as long as it’s not excessive. I think we all can relate to weight fluctuations. But, yes, it’s just important to remember that no one needs to be perfect (whatever that even is).
Nicole´s last post ..Healthy and Easy Sloppy Joe’s

cindylu April 21, 2011 at 10:07 pm

Before I started reading healthy living blogs I read a lot from fat acceptance and healthy at every size (HAES) bloggers. This was after I lost a significant amount of weight after being overweight my whole life. I never talked much about my weight loss and the numbers on my blog because it was always very personal. I come from a culture that isn’t to open about body image issues (even though nicknames like gorda and flaca are really common). So, talking about wanting to lose weight all the time just felt a bit tacky and impolite.

Phoebe April 22, 2011 at 10:53 am

Good post. I like your emphasis on being realistic. I’m not a blogger but I definitely feel the pressure to be that “perfect” girl who eats a ton of food and enjoys it all but is still skinny because of working out all the time. I sometimes manage to succeed at this by my own standards but it’s hard. I guess the lesson is that even if you have a positive attitude toward food and a positive regard of being able to eat a lot (which is really championed in the “Be that sexy girl who devours a cheeseburger on the first date!” way, as well as by “real food” enthusiast bloggers. Did anyone read that January Jones interview in Esquire where the whole thing is about how much she likes drinking lots of beer?) a lot of people still want to be skinny. There are certainly some bloggers who could easily have their legion photographs of themselves thrown up on thinspiration sites. As some said above, I don’t think there’s anything at all wrong with liking to be thin and wanting to lose vanity pounds, but an emphasis on realism about these ideas is probably good.

McKella May 1, 2011 at 10:15 pm

I love it! I too love real food and I love my size 12 bod. I’m not shy about what I eat, but I’m also not shy about what I don’t eat. If I don’t feel like dessert or if I avoid dairy or sugar because they give me a stomach ache, so what? I think sometimes the stereotype goes the other way too, that curvy girls are always supposed to want dessert or lasagna, but never a salad or a piece of fruit. It’s also ok if my body decides it doesn’t like this weight any more and decides to shrink or grow a little. As long as I honor my body’s signals, it’s all good.
McKella´s last post ..The falacy of “I can’t”

Stacie @ Imperfectly Healthy May 2, 2011 at 1:45 am

Thank you SO MUCH for this post! I’m glad that the skinny girls are out there enjoying their food but sometimes I look at their pictures and think that they are entitled to enjoy it because they’re skinny (stupid reasoning, I know — I’m working on it!). I probably weigh 30 lbs more than most bloggers and have an apple-shaped body, which I feel like puts me in the minority even more. But I like real food too – and I’m not going to stop eating it!!!

Ann Becker-Schutte May 2, 2011 at 4:07 am

I always appreciate voices that are advocating healthy, loving relationships with ourselves–where we are right this minute, not at some mythic “ideal weight.” And I agree with the comment that health is a way more important benchmark then weight (and weight and health aren’t equivalent measures). Thanks!
Ann Becker-Schutte´s last post ..Self Care 101- Regaining Traction

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