Fit To Be Stylish
I’m gonna say something that may offend a few of you: Clothes look better on fit women. Now, before you fill my inbox with hate mail, re-read that sentence. I didn’t say “skinny” women. I didn’t even say “thin” women. I used the word “fit,” so hear me out.
If you’ve been around The Style Geek long enough, you know that I struggled with an eating disorder off and on through college and finally kicked its vomit inducing butt in graduate school. When I moved to California in 2008, I weighed 125 pounds. An unoffensive number to most of you, but one that was hardly healthy for my petite five foot one and three-fourths (when you’re this short you measure everything) frame. Since 2008, I’ve lost 20 pounds and successfully kept it off.
While my weight loss story is hardly worth writing home about compared to the likes of the Biggest Losers, I’d venture to say that most of you reading this blog identify more with the struggle to lose a muffin than a baby elephant around your waist. So how did I do it and why should you care?
For once, I didn’t go on a crazy diet. I didn’t even deprive myself of some of the foods I really enjoyed. The bottom line with any weight loss plan is that you must burn more calories than you are consuming. Period. End of sentence. If a person weighing 125 pounds burns an average of 284 calories per spin class and the average slice of pizza has around 250 calories, that means he/she should only have one slice of pizza for lunch. If there’s 3500 calories in a pound of fat, that means he/she would have to burn 500 more calories per day than he/she is consuming in order to burn a pound of fat in a week. That’s it. Simple math.
And simple trade-offs. If you’re going to have a glass of wine (or two) with dinner, skip dessert. If you heaped your plate full during the office potluck, have a salad sans cheese with low fat dressing for dinner. Yes, it does mean occasionally having to go to bed a little hungry (though a glass of hot tea will fill that gnawing sensation); and no, a transformation won’t happen overnight (or, in 7-10 days like some diets that will remain nameless promise), but it will work. And you can sustain it.
Now, how does this apply to style? Well, as I so boldly proclaimed earlier, clothes look better on people who have a healthy, in-shape physique. It doesn’t mean you have to look like ready to rock the runway (some of us will always fight the pear) but it does mean that you should put on every outfit knowing that you have done your best to look and feel as healthy as possible. (Sidenote: Your wallet might thank you as well. I’m personally less prone to shop when I feel confident that I look good in the clothes I already have in my closet. If I feel insecure about my body, all I want to do is disguise it with something new to wear.)
And since I often call myself The Style Geek, allow me to suggest that everyone download Calorie Counter by Fat Secret to your smart phones to augment your weight loss efforts. It’s available for BlackBerry, Android and iPhone and lets you keep a food and exercise diary that automatically calculates how many calories you consumed or burned as well as provides other tools to chart your weight loss.
What about you? What are your tips for staying in shape?