Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Happy Weight Calculator

I don’t know why, but I decided to browse Self Magazines Website today. Out of curiosity I clicked on their “happy weight” calculator. I plugged in my info and discovered, according to them I need to lose around 65lbs to be happy. Not only happy but apparently healthy as well since the claim was “Happy Weight is a simple way to gauge how healthy your weight is for your height.” One could assume from their calculations that I must be pretty darn unhealthy.

However at my current weight I have no chronic illness or symptoms of any. At my current weight I have blood work, that indicates all is well in range. At my current weight I have a resting heart rate in the low 50’s . At my current weight I exersize 4-6 times per week and have been exercising consistently for almost 2 yrs. At my current weight my body is functional, I can walk, run, jump, squat and maneuver my body in the ways I need and want to. At my current weight I eat a diet with very little processed foods, simple carbs and sugar. At my current weight I have a positive relationship with food, absent of guilt and abuse.

I think I am TOO BIG for their little calculator. Because it seems to me that I am healthy and happy weighing 225lbs.

I could go into a rant, get angry, explain why this “happy weight” calculator is sad and wrong and contributes to a culture making women sad and utterly miserable about their bodies- short changing the full possibility of their emotional health and quite possibly their physical health as well. That health and weight can be correlated at best, but often have very little to do with each other. But I’ll stop and say this:

A number, any number, can and will never, ever make you happy…. period.

Be happy now.


Melinda said...


Love this one!

Miss ya!!

Stephanie Vincent said...

miss you too!! Hope your crossfit total tonight is a "happy weight"!

Ashley said...

Excuse my french but, F*** YEAH!!!

Gosh. This calculator is insulting!

Tamara Cohen said...

I really DON'T like this concept at all, and I could rant about it also, haha. I believe in be happy now, as well. That said, I'm interested to see what this calculator tells women and how that number compares to their actual weight. It told me 150 lbs at 5'8, and I think that is probably more than what most women would have in mind as their own "ideal" weight. It's still less than I weigh now, which is around 160 lbs. But, I'm a weight class strength athlete and most likely have drastically different views about the scale than the average woman.

Stephanie Vincent said...

Well everyone has been finding their happy weight! The verdict- i'd say most get a weight that seems too low for their bodies, a few said it validated the amount of weight they felt they needed to lose, and one of my facebook friends even said it told her she needed to gain weight.

My take away- charts and calculators really don't work. Even if they have good intentions. We are never one size fits all (but our society always tries to make things that way- perhaps its human nature.