We’re all too familiar with the 'before and after' weight loss transformations that flood our social media feeds, but is the reality of 'achieving' a goal ever truly enough? Instagrammer Kate Jones has warned her followers of the impact dieting can have on your mental health, revealing that even after a 50kg (almost 8 stone) weight loss, she only felt more insecure about her body.
Kate's honest post is proof that reaching fitness goals aren't the be all and end all; after relaxing her regime she is proud of her new curvier figure and finally feels confident in her own skin.
"I always thought that by losing weight, I would find happiness and fulfilment and that my insecurities would magically disappear. But honestly, they were only amplified" Kate told her 134,000 followers in a recent post.
Stuck in a vicious cycle of diet mentality, no matter how much the number on the scale reduced, it was never enough. "I couldn’t help but focus on my loose skin and saggy boobs, or that I wasn’t toned enough. I hated that I didn’t have abs and never thought I was as thin as I should be."[instagram]https://www.instagram.com/p/BzDG-nChUaW/[/instagram]
Having spent hours at the gym, and tracked every calorie, Kate become obsessed with the number of the scale, which was only fuelled by the praise she received from her peers about her slimmer frame. "But what people didn’t see was the total obsession, the exhaustion, the restriction, the shitty social life and the terrible relationship I had with my body and food."
The Australian blogger soon realised that losing weight didn’t automatically change your body image; in fact, for Kate it made it a lot worse. "It wasn’t until I learnt to accept my body, disassociate happiness with weight and stopped trying to be smaller, that my life truly began," she wrote.[instagram]https://www.instagram.com/p/BxerL9sBSZE/[/instagram]
Kate has now taken a different approach, promoting body positivity and encouraging her followers to ditch the diets. She wants people to foster a healthy relationship with food, and to develop a realistic body image that isn’t distorted by unattainable expectations thanks to the numerous picture perfect Instagram models that bombard our feeds.
"Sometimes gaining weight is just a side effect of living your best life," she says. "People judge your entire journey based off one photo. They see the before, they see the after, but they see nothing in between."
In a subsequent post, Kate compared herself post-weight loss in 2014 to where she is now, in 2019. "Those with a healthy body image aren’t the thinnest among us," Kate wisely pointed out. "They’re the ones who know that they have value and worth beyond their appearance."
The 28-year-old is proof that health and happiness aren’t defined by how many green juices you drink or how many sit ups you do in the gym, but about finding a happy medium and learning to love yourself, cellulite and all.
Posting a recent picture baring in all in a paisley bikini, Kate commented: "Honestly ladies, strut your stuff and be proud of your body. Think of all the incredible things it has done for you and the memories you’ve made with it.[instagram]https://www.instagram.com/p/BruWVHBhqY2/[/instagram]
"Those 'flaws' are literally just normal parts of us all. Love them, own them, flaunt them and start living, not hiding."
Now, that’s a message we can get behind.