The Ideal Weight: Past versus Present

The Ideal Weight: Past versus Present
photo: -Paul H-, Creative Commons
photo: -Paul H-, Creative Commons

Most women have a number in their minds. This number is the ideal weight they struggle to achieve and/or maintain throughout their lives. They carry it deep within themselves, and there is often longing as they describe that perfect weight.

Sometimes the ideal weight is tied to one defining moment.

A friend was her ideal weight on her wedding day. I heard about it often: I weighed (a very small number) when I got married.

One of my high school teachers could still wear her prom dress from her high school days – some fifteen years earlier – and she let everyone know about that dress. (Take note that she did not have children.)

Some women see the weight from when they started college as being ideal. Others idealize their weight before children.

News flash: Our bodies change over time.

Your ideal weight should change, too. Trying to get back to a weight from within the past few years—that is achievable. A decade ago? Your wedding day? That kind of thinking can be problematic because it is not how life works.

The reality is that as we age, our metabolism slows down and it makes it more difficult to lose weight as quickly as you did in the past. Accepting your current weight and setting realistic goals for the present stage of life may be the best way to think about that ideal weight. 

There’s hope for those struggling with the concept of “ideal weight.”

Grow is offering a workshop on Saturday, May 3rd called Reflecting a Healthy Self-Image. If you struggle with self-acceptance when it comes to your weight, this is a safe place to talk about the struggles. Contact me using the information below if you would like more information or are interested in attending.


Marlayne Whitlock, M.A., LAPC



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