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5 reasons why I'm not going on a diet this year

04 January 2016, 12:03Cath Jenkin

Every New Year rolls around and we’re all limbering up with resolutions and signing up for the dance class, and clearing out our grocery cupboards to eliminate all treats.

But, by the time Easter rolls around, we’re all eyeballing the marshmallow chocolate eggs and hiding Lindt wrappers under our pillows at 2am. Oh go on, I know you do it.

But here’s the thing. I’m NOT going on a diet this year. This is why:

Because I like my bum:

I really, really do – not just for me, but for my significant other too. He regularly throws a compliment in the direction of my rear and frankly, I like hearing those.

Also, I have what I call a Writer’s Bum, because it sits and creates for a large part of every day. My butt is a highly appreciated symbol of the career I love so much. The butt stays.

I like to dance:

I spend a large portion of each day with just my dog and my computer for company. My dog is now used to me busting out a move while I work and listen to my top tracks, but that’s not all the dancing I do.

I dance with my kid, whenever and wherever we are. And, I used to pop in my earphones while doing the groceries and groove on down the vegetable aisle. I stopped doing that last year. I’m committed to doing that jive again.

We walk more now than I did in the last few years:

Our daily lives and routines have completely changed, which means that we actually walk more, as a matter of course, every day.

I have always loved walking, and sometimes a morning run. Before, we lived a little too far away from things for walking to be convenient for everything. Now it is.

I want to stave off the food issues that may present themselves in the future:

I have a daughter, who is currently on that funny precipice between childhood and the teenage years. My mother was anorexic and a dear friend of mine battled it in high school.

There were food-related issues in my childhood that I am, as an adult, so hugely aware of. As my daughter is surrounded by a barrage of life moments and media that emphasise the "need" to be thin, or to "starve yourself beautiful" (and don’t you dare tell me that it’s not the case!), I want her to always feel she is enough, she is beautiful and she is worthy.

The best way I can do that is by showing and living moderation in all things. So yes, I’ll take that Lindt thanks, but no, I won’t wolf the whole slab.

And yes, we’ll devour a platter of fruit and vegetables for dinner because that feels like a treat to us.

Teaching balance and moderation when it comes to nutrition is one of the key components to enabling and nurturing a healthy relationship with food.

Me "going on a diet" and actively depriving myself of something I used to have is not what I want to teach.

Rather, if anything, I’d happily commit to a family meal plan that makes sense and is centred on moderation, while offering all the choice it possibly can. Line me up for some sweet potato mash please.  

And lastly, because I like me, finally:

In the broad strokes of my life, I have been the fat kid, the thin girl, and the in-between woman. Frankly, just before, 35, I really like me.

Sure, sometimes I look in the mirror and ponder a few wrinkle removals but, for the most part, I like who I am.

It’s taken me far too long to finally get here and I have no reason to want to change. Improve, perhaps, but I don’t want to change me. Thank the stars for that.

Follow Cath Jenkin on Twitter.

- Woman24


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