Being skinny will not make you happy

Being skinny will not make you happy.

Weird coming from a personal trainer, but yup, I said it.

“I’d be happier if I was 2kg lighter.” “I wish I was a size 8.” I hear it all of the time but the truth is, these are just arbitrary goals that have no real meaning.

It is a tough reality to come to, but reaching these physical goals will NOT make you happy. Yes we need goals to keep us on track and we keep measurements to know we are doing the right thing. But if you are putting all of your happiness and ‘success’ down to a goal that has no real meaning…you are going about this all wrong.

It has been a long road for me to realise this in my own life. I used to lift weights six days a week. Always lifting to get bigger. I didn’t want to do cardio, simply worrying that it would ruin my chances of building more muscle. Friends and family would compliment me on my progress but what they were telling me did not reflect the image that I saw of myself. I was never satisfied. I always thought ‘I’ll be happier when I am a little bit bigger’. But that never happens. Simply chasing vanity goals is not enough.

Balance. This is the ultimate goal. If you are overweight, then yes, you need to lose body fat to be healthy. But it needs to be more than this.

Your body is physically capable of bloody amazing things. It can run long distances, swim across oceans and lift some heavy ass weight. It carries you through this crazy journey of life and can do SO MUCH MORE than you give it credit for.

Rather than chasing a number or a dress size, think about why you are really doing this. I still regularly lift weights, but now I do this alongside exercise that I love and that gives me that kick. I love the feeling of exploring a city by foot and the endorphin buzz from cycling or running. Not only this. I love being able to run around with my nephew without feeling out of breath!

Set a goal that really means something to you.

Exercise isn’t a punishment for the way your body looks and over-restricting calories to reach a number is neither healthy nor sustainable.

Find a way of staying active and a way of eating that fuels you for the life that you want to live.

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