Category Archives: Advice

Lose weight when single, gain weight when in a relationship

Now I can’t comment too much on my own personal experience in this department as I’ve only held one main relationship throughout my years but I definitely heard about this phenomenon through couples, articles and the media. I’ve seen it first hand with friends of mine and it is quite the fascinating experience.

When you’re single and on the prowl, it’s pretty evident that you always try to put your best foot forward, not just special nights out but even during your Saturday afternoon shopping. Why is that? Because you never know when that perfect person is going to come your way. Exercise, eating right, staying in those skinny jeans are top priorities for the single folk of the world as the dating world relies heavily on first impressions. Maybe mr. right is in line with you at the grocery store or you bump into him on your morning run. A girl’s gotta be prepared at a moment’s notice.

Once you finally get into a relationship, things can often change. I find one of the best bonding activities couples go through is activities involving eating, whether making a meal at home together or going to a fancy dinner in town. It’s common knowledge after all that food is the one thing that can bring people together and act as a conversation piece if need be. There’s less need to impress because you’ve already got that awesome person by your side who loves you for exactly who you are, weight aside. You sink into that comfortable zone and suddenly you’re replacing those skinny jeans with those good ol’ comfortable sweats you love. Of course there are always exceptions to the rules and those who don’t suffer from this, I commend you but for the rest of us, whether we realize it or not, we fall into this side affect to love.

I think in most part, this ‘letting-go’ mentality isn’t based so much on a sudden lack of interest in appearance but rather, a replacement of priorities. That hour at the gym gets replaced with an extra hour in bed with your loved one, that ‘no sweets’ diet is blown when your lover decides to buy you some chocolates. It seems you’re filling up on love and your calendar is more about ‘us’ than just ‘me’.

An article I previously read mentioned that maybe it goes beyond that.  Maybe the person you’re with doesn’t exemplify good, healthy habits to begin with and through time, you take on those bad habits as well. It’s hard to resist junk food when your partner is a junk food fanatic. Maybe he or she hates exercising and dares not to get out of bed. With time and slow deterioration of your will, I’d be willing to bet that you’d end up with similar habits because of course you want to spend more time with your partner, however inactive your activities may be. Bad habits are hard to break and easy to adapt. Hence why a lot of super active individuals look for like-minded people to be in relationships with. It’s not really the ideal match to have the triathlon runner dating the video game junkie.

I’ll admit, at the beginning of my relationship, I was at a healthier weight. But I don’t think my relationship is to blame for the added pounds over the years. It hasn’t helped but certainly hasn’t made it worse. Life changes, habits change and people change. It’s an evolution of life. I never threw health out the window, I just didn’t dedicate my life to it because I had something just as good to dedicate it to; love. My partner wasn’t the best nutritious or balanced eater and our time spent together reflected my adaptation to his eating habits to please him since that was easier than trying to get him to eat the veggies I was usually eating. However he was definitely much more of an active person than I originally was and brought that element into our relationship. Our poor eating habits were often balanced with walks/runs around town.

When we split up, I did what many girls do and I lost some of my relationship weight (a successful 15 pounds), entered the dating world and met some new men. I definitely felt the need/pressure to look good and impress at a moment’s notice and acknowledged my shift in mentality.

I don’t think being on either side of the coin is better or worse than the other. I suppose as long as your weight gain still leaves you in the ‘healthy’ zone, you’re not worse off than before. And whether you’re skinny or have a little more to love, being single isn’t the worse thing in the world either.

But between skinny and alone vs a little extra to love while in love? I think I’d go with the latter, but hey! that’s just me.

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Surviving Post-Secondary: Goals + School Year Resolution

Setting out goals is very important in the journey to success and this is especially true of university. And when I talk about goals, I don’t just mean ‘my goal is to do well in school’. Goals need to be a little more concrete than that. You need to put it in specifics, things that you can measure and hold yourself to such as time or amount. A lot of students hope for the best, deal with the worst and don’t do enough to prepare. Instead of excelling, they’re just holding on and getting by. I was one of those student, “was”…

I want to stress how important it is to look at school not just in the view of tomorrow’s class, or the test coming up next week but instead as a semester, as a whole year. What do you want to accomplish this year both academically and personally. Maybe you want to join a new club, make some friends, try a new restaurant in town, go out to the club one friday night, attend a school football game, get at least a B+ on your essay. Maybe its even simpler than that. Maybe it’s getting up at 8:00 am every morning, remembering to eat breakfast, doing your laundry every other week, attending each lecture. Whatever it is, write it down, put it somewhere you can see it and keep it on your mind and within reach. Don’t let another school year slip by. Make it count.

Similar to that of a New Year’s resolution, there is also the idea of a School Year Resolution. For students, their years follow the Sept-April schedule. That’s certainly how I determine another year gone by. And with the start of a new school year, comes an opportunity for a fresh academic start. Whether you failed a course last year, didn’t get involved in anything or barely went to classes, this year can be totally different and you can transform yourself into the student you’ve always wanted to be.

I could have initially written about this earlier on in the month but I wanted to give people time to settle in, get used to their classes, figure out their schedules, get involved in a few extra curricular activities and the general framework of the school year. Now that that’s over with, it’s high time that you made a resolution or some resolutions for yourself. As with any resolution in life, they don’t have to major things but they need to be tangible so that you can be held accountable at the end of the day whether you managed to succeed or determine where you went wrong.

Don’t know what to resolve? Well allow me to go first.

My school resolution is to go to every tutorial assigned by my courses each semester.

I’ve had difficulties with attending lectures sometimes but nothing beats my bad habits with regards to my tutorials. Something about the forced classroom environment, a blast from the high school past, that makes me choose to stay home in bed. Either I wasn’t interested in the course, annoyed by my T.A. or was just plain lazy, I hardly ever made it. But that’s going to change. This year I’m going to go to tutorials, every last one. It’s beneficial for me that my department has changed the policy to every other week as opposed to weekly tutorials. It actually gives me time to read and be prepared for our tutorial gatherings.

So there’s mine. Fairly tangible and definitely able to hold me accountable, I hope to keep good on my resolution. What will yours be?

Heart Vs Head: Battle Royale

In this corner we have the current underdog dressed up in grey , weighing in at a massive 1.3kg yet quick and resourceful, we have the brain! Often overlooked and underestimated, it’s rise to the top has come swiftly in the last few battles.

And in this corner, we have the reigning champ sporting its favourite colour red tonight, coming in at a mere .2 kg yet as complex and forceful as any other, the heart! Small and light, it’s championed over the most difficult opponents. After recovering from a minor stab, he’s healed up nicely these last few months and is ready to take on his opponent

Tonight it all comes down to this head to heart match. Who will come out on top and win the grand title?!

Heart

Instinctively, I’m a natural follower of the heart. Impulsive, passionate and emotional were always ways to describe my approach to love and life. It’s instinctive and the strongest force within me. It simply can’t be ignored. However, we all know the perils of following your heart too often and the emotional and irrational messes it can sometimes lead to. How many times have you gone with your instinct, with what you heart told you to do only to end up in emotional turmoil? *raises hand* I’ve been there too. So I’m doing my best these days to let my head lead for once. Emotional reactions and expectations aside, I’m trying to lessen my impulses and think things through. Does that mean I never take leaps? Heck no! I probably still take just as many but I do it for the right reasons not because it just feels right at the time.

There is such a thing as being too cautious, guarded and emotionally blocked though. People who always lead with their head sometimes get trapped, become emotionally unavailable and often unapproachable. Humans were made to feel, it’s what differs us from other species. We feel and can express it in many different ways. Bottling oneself up is no good either.

So no matter which one you lead with, learn to lead with the other once in a while. You’ll find each has their separate benefits.

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