I guarantee not one person reading this can say they have never heard someone mention a “summer diet,” or “spring break diet,” or “weight loss for a wedding,” etc. I also can’t speak for all of you, but I know that everyone I have personally ever witnessed that has tried one or multiple of the diet shenanigans has never actually kept the weight off afterwards. What I don't understand is why someone would lose sleep to go to the gym for hours and starve themselves only to eat it all back during their vacation or event. This is how our lives become a constant cycle. Each season brings new occasions that people think they have to lose weight before attending and I’m flat out done hearing it. It is for one thing, completely unhealthy and for another, not how society should be looking forward to events. Why should we punish ourselves in order to be able to have fun on special occasions? The whole point of having something to look forward to is to actually be able to look forward to it, not torture ourselves only for the results to be reversed in the near future. These mini diets wouldn’t be as difficult if instead of convincing ourselves we have to be healthy for this and that, we told ourselves we needed to change our lifestyle as a whole in terms of health. A yo-yo diet never works and neither do crash diets. What works in terms of health and happiness is developing a lifestyle where we allow ourselves to indulge but also nourish our bodies with the foods they need. We can’t continue preparing for a week or even a night of anticipated overeating by undereating weeks before. Our bodies were not made for these games and our minds certainly weren’t either.
Times like these can severely ruin our relationships with food as we begin to tell ourselves what foods are “good” and “bad” and can permanently label foods for the future. Intuitive eating is so important in the sense that we eat when we are hungry and stop when we are full as well as satisfy our cravings. By going on bouts of dieting, we increase the possibility of binge eating and thus, creating a cycle. It’s easy to look around us at others who also fall victim to these event diets and compare our diets to theirs, creating an even more unhealthy competition as to who can “eat less” or “exercise more”.
More importantly, our bodies should not be something that we focus on when it comes to a special occasion. Why do we need to look a certain way for spring break or a wedding? The people we enjoy our time with loved us before we decided to lose X number of pounds before said event and will love us no matter what size we are. I never understood the point of trying to fit into a “goal” size dress for a wedding when the person they are marrying loves them already. I understand if someone is physically unhealthy or mentally unhappy in a non-disordered way. But most of the time when people diet for an occasion, it is because of how society makes event diets such a prominent thing and because they feel that in order to “look good” in a certain outfit or bathing suit, they need to drop pounds. We already associate so many things that we do with how we look; why bring in even the most exciting time? We are so quick to blame our bodies for everything when really half the time it's in our heads. Losing weight is not going to change anything about the trip or occasion, and I can promise you that. I’ve been at both extremely high weights and unhealthily low weights, and I can honestly say I’ve had more fun and enjoyed life more when my body wasn't the center focus and I didn’t diet to get to the way I looked at that moment.
Summer bod, keep the winter fat off, wedding diets… they haunt our screens. How can we ignore the unrealistic nonsense they try and tell us? We look in the mirror and remind ourselves that two months ago, our bodies looked different. Two months from now our bodies will look different. Every few months our bodies change and we can’t do anything about it. Instead of going against nature and what our bodies need, we force ourselves to get into this mindset that if we hardcore diet for a month then our time at these events will be better spent. That isn't true at all and god knows we probably will beat ourselves up EVEN more for indulging than if we never dieted in the first place. Life isn't a matter of eat whatever, diet, eat whatever, and then try and lost the weight. Life is about giving your own personal body what it needs and loving it for what it is and not for what you want others to think of it at certain times. Cut the crap, not the calories.