Posted on May 26, 2017 by Kate Halsall

manage unplanned weight gain

It’s an honest question? If your goal is to maintain your weight or to lose weight, how do you manage unplanned weight gain? I only ask because as personal trainers we see this happen, we’re asked questions about it and our clients deal with it in very different ways. And trust me – we’ve all been there at some stage!

The Emotions

When everything fits as it should, it’s easy to ignore the weight creeping on. But then something happens – for example clothes get a little tighter and don’t fit quite right – and whilst it may not be a complete shock that your weight is no longer ok; the way it can leaves you feeling should not be underestimated. At the start you may feel one or more of these:

  • Anger, disappointment & disbelief – how did this happen? I’ve been really good recently, I’ve been feeling thinner, why didn’t people find a way to mention it or help?
  • Embarrassment – that you’ve let yourself get to that stage (and subsequent search for baggier clothes)
  • Disgust – harsh criticism of yourself and your actions which have led to this gain
  • Depression and discomfort – a vicious circle which can even lead to not wanting to be seen in public

The Excuses

As we start to rationalise what has happened, formulate plans to get out of the negative mindset we’ve found ourselves in and start to do something about this excess weight; along come the excuses of why this happened in the first place. These include:

  • Not had time
  • I’ve been too tired
  • It’s too hot/cold/raining
  • It’s my age
  • I just find the gym by myself so boring
  • I’ve got so much on at the moment/I’ve been under a lot of stress lately
  • I’m just not organised enough
  • I love food
  • I’ve had a lot of social occasions recently

The Light

It’s not easy – sometimes it can be a real battle (even just going to the gym in front of other people can be a challenge!), but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Firstly it’s important to understand what is going to get and keep you motivated. Likewise, you need to re-familiarise yourself with goal setting and how to stick to those goals. Ultimately you need an action plan, and at the very least you should include the following:

  • Prioritise time for yourself and refocus. Sit down and look at your diary. Block time out for you to train, to food prep, to go for a walk, even if it’s just 30 minutes every day – you need to get into a new routine so that it becomes second nature.
  • Get organised. You can’t start a healthier-on-the-route-to-weight-loss-you without being organised. Forgetting your gym kit, not having access to the right food….aren’t these part of the reason why you’re in the place you’re in now?
  • Write it down. So many people think they’re food is healthy until they start to write it down. It could be as simple as realising that actually every day you have one or more Lattes or snack on a load of nuts – but at least now you know and can do something about it!
  • Find your base of support. Whilst this does slightly link to how you’re motivated; it’s still a great advantage to know who you can go to for that extra push, a hug, picture taking, competition, or high five. Partners, family, friends, fellow class members, gym buddy, personal trainers, your pets…it can be anyone

We all deal with things differently – it’s what makes us human. But the point of this blog is to make you realise that if you gain unplanned weight – you’re not alone. Hopefully this will also help you understand that how you deal with it is totally natural. The key is that there is a way to get back on it, to get back to where you were – but you need to ditch the excuses, start feeling positive and go for the light.