Weight Struggles - Maybe God's path for me is to NOT be thin?

I have been struggling with my weight. I have gone from working out 30 min a week at the gym (brisk walking, never broke into a sweat) to working out every day at home with 30 Day Shred by Jillian Michaels AND Insanity by Shaun T, taking spinning and Les Mills Body Pump classes at the gym, swimming, planking, pilates, running on the treadmill 20 minutes a day. No result. I still weigh exactly the same. I eat normal meals, I don’t eat excessively or have midnight snacks, etc, and I cook healthy food.

My body is sore at any given moment and I can barely make it down the stairs in the morning because my legs and body are in great pain.

I’m starting to think that maybe God’s path for me, is to NOT be thin. I know God knows me better than I know myself, and if His will is for me to be overweight, I can’t defy His will. He is in control, not me.

Am I reading too much into it or is it very possible that God’s plan for my life could be as an overweight woman?

I think that if you eat healthy and work out, then you’re doing you part by taking care of your body. I’ve struggled with my weight as well, but I’m not satisfied with it. If I were to drop some pounds, I think that a lot of things would improve. I think it’s a matter of choice between healthy and unhealthy habits.

I don’t feel fat is a sin, unless you put food or something like that before God. I am fat due to lots of illnesses but I figure God gave them to me, so he understands the weight. I found the eat less and move more helps but to a point. I’m in much pain so I can’t move that often.

Just want to say you’re not alone and I’m praying for you!


Hi Writer2014,

From a moral perspective, your job is to take care of your body. If you’re exercising and eating healthy foods then you’re doing your part. You shouldn’t stop working out and eating healthy foods, but don’t concern yourself too much with the results. The point is, you’re doing your part to take care of your body. :thumbsup:

There are illnesses that can cause people to gain weight, or to not be able to lose it. Some people even gain weight when calories are cut. If you are quite overweight (not just 10 or 20 pounds), then you should see a doctor or even specialist. Some of these illnesses are not well known to some doctors, or are difficult to diagnose. Some of the conditions are: pre-diabetes & diabetes, thyroid problems, Hasimotos, Cushings, PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome). There are others.

You may seriously want to consider seeing an endocrinologist. This type of specialist can diagnose many of these illnesses. Many regular doctors just treat individual symptoms and don’t look at the bigger picture. It can be quite frustrating.
Personally, I think it is best to get checked to rule out anything serious.

It will help the doctors for you to log everything. Food intake (type, amount, time), exercise, symptoms.

Good luck! I understand how frustrating this is as I am experiencing it myself.

I agree with the previous poster who suggests you see a doctor to see if there is a problem.

If not, then you are still eating too much. I have been controlling my weight for 20 years now. I am not fat but if I were not careful I definitely would be. What I have learned is that the amount and type of food we eat is so much more important than exercise. You say you eat normal meals but that doesn’t mean much. Maybe your idea of a normal meal is very different from what other people consider to be normal. Have you ever seen a dietician? They could have a critical look at your food diary and suggest the right regime for you. I have also found Weight Watchers to be very good. It is easy to follow and it works.

I really don’t think that to be overweight is God’s will for you. God wants what is best for us and being overweight is definitely not good. But that does not mean that your weakness is a sin since you are trying hard to be healthy. I don’t think this is a moral issue.

If you’re eating healthy and exercising, then odds are that you are at a healthy weight for your body. I recommend “Health at Every Size” by Linda Bacon if you want an alternative to dieting for losing weight. Focus on eating healthy and enjoying exercise and allow your body to take care of the rest.

Perhaps I missed it, but I didn’t see where you defined what “overweight” was?

Do you believe yourself to be overweight based on an individual medical evaluation - or a chart of what “normal” for your height should be, or from some other source?

God’s plan is for us to take care of our bodies so we can do His work by staying healthy. I know I am obese and I’m working on it - but one of my first steps was to realize that with my medical history and body type, I’m never going to reach the “proper” weight you’d find on a chart nor am I ever going to look like a Biggest Loser finalist. But that’s okay. I’m training now for a personal best in a 5k, and I intend to finish a half marathon this year, with the goal of completing an OCR within the next 2 years. I say this because finding fun exercise goals (these are what are “fun” to me) has made my workouts (and life) much happier than just working out to burn calories.

Overall, I have had the most success in losing weight when I’m not thinking at all about losing weight but rather working towards a challenge (the races) and adding healthy habits (more veggies).

I’m sorry you’re struggling right now and I’ll pray that you find peace.

God doesn’t have a divine will weight plan. That is not the type of thing God gets involved in. When we talk about God’s will, we are talking about the spiritual life and salvation of souls.

Regarding your health and weight, I would encourage you to seek an evaluation from your doctor and a consultation with a nutritionist and a personal trainer. If you want to exercises, please do it rigt. What you are doing now is not a correct approach, and you could injure yourself (or perhaps already have) and probably also need to add proper strength training to your regmine.

Whether your lose weight or not, you want to be healthy so talking to a doctor, nutritionist, and trainer is the way to go.

Depending on how long and rigorously you’ve been keeping this new exercise routine, you may have gained weight by putting on muscle/water weight. I’ve found in the past when I’ve started an intense new workout that I actually gain a pound or two the first month. This has something to do with muscles taking in increased water and the increase in overall muscle mass (muscle weighs more than fat). I forget the scientific details but it’s fairly easy to look up on the internet.

It’s very important when doing intense exercise to take days off periodically to allow the body to heal and micro-tears in the muscles to repair. It actually slows down muscle building progress if you never take a day off with any particular muscle group. You can take a day off entirely or for each individual muscle group, depending on your preference. This was an important realization for me, because once I started cycling my workout so that I had time to heal, I started dropping lots of weight and gained muscle more quickly.

Others have addressed the moral issues surrounding your post very well. I’d like to just focus on the theological problems of the quoted statement above.

First, God’s will isn’t a superior force breaking in and destroying your will. God’s will activates your will and allows you the freedom to choose. You have an almost Calvinistic view here, which is neither compatible with Scripture nor with Church teaching.

Second, as another poster pointed out, God doesn’t so mircomanage our lives that He has willed from all eternity what weight you will be. Your weight is determined by how much energy (food) you take in vs. how much energy (movement) you burn off. If you are taking in more than you a burning off you’ll gain weight. Weight can also effected by various health issues. If you think you have struck a solid diet / exercise balance and still cannot lose weight, see a doctor.

Finally, and most problematic of all, is the idea that because doing x is hard, therefore God wills I do not do x. Extend this logic to other areas. Quitting smoking is hard, does that mean that God wills people to continue to smoke? Stopping the use of heroine is even harder. Does it follow that God wants people to continue injecting? Someone with a violent temper could find it hard to stop beating his wife, does God want such a person to be a wife-beater? Examples could be multiplied almost endlessly. God never promised any of us an easy path. We all have struggles, we all carry crosses. Just because carry a cross is hard, doesn’t mean God doesn’t still want us to do so. In fact, God not only wants us to struggle, but even provides the graces needed to overcome those struggles.

Pax Christi.

While we cannot give specific medical advice here, I will share my experience and what worked for me:

I have an advanced degree am in the health field, and strict low-fat vegan eating did it for me. This type of eating allows me to eat as much as I want, and I am thus never hungry.

Prior to being vegan, I cut portions, calories, etc., and thought I was “doomed”, as the weight stayed on.

I continue regular exercise, this has not changed since I became vegan.

I think it’s important to know what the OP deems “overweight.” The OP may not be fat at all.

If there is an actual weight problem, I agree with a previous poster that the OP probably needs to adjust their idea of “normal.” Are you actually counting calories? I’m in the middle of a similarly disappointing weight loss program (I am not able to exercise right now because of foot trouble caused by exercise), and one of my sad discoveries is portion size. Back when I was gaining a lot of weight, I tended to think of three slices or even four as a serving. Now that I’m counting calories and much more stable, I’m living with the fact that one (1.00) slice is a serving. So sad!

Doctors seem to love Weight Watchers, by the way. They’re supposed to be very good about teaching portion control.

Best wishes!

Offering emotional support, I definitely identify with the worn-out feeling in the morning from taking some of those classes or those types of classes which I do. I know even very young people get worn out from these classes let alone myself. So, it sounds like you are expending a lot of energy on these.

I dropped a lot of weight right away when I must have started eliminating a large amount of sugars and so on from my diet, making it rare to have burger, pizzas and what have you as well.

That kind of extra weight dropped but it seems I am almost static weightwise nowadays.

Per one of the comments before me, I think if I really wanted to drop more, going heavy vegan/vegetarian might work but that is difficult indeed.

Losing weight is a million dollar industry out there.

Health Clubs, Diet Pills, Books, TV Shows,

There’s a reason for that, because losing weight is so difficult, it is.

I understand your difficulties. I got to my late 40s and was extremely obese. It was affecting my health and had long since affected my self-esteem. I put my mind to a simple diet, bought some heavy-duty bathroom scales and started walking every day (nothing extreme, I couldn’t walk far at first) and by the time I was 50 I had halved my bodyweight. I even started running, although that was a bad idea and my knees suffered.

Since then, I relaxed and started eating more food/fatty foods again, and put about 70lbs back on - so in the last 15 months I’ve been back on my simple diet and have lost about 60lbs again. My blood pressure is back to normal and I feel so much better.

My advice would be that a healthy diet isn’t always low in calories, unfortunately. Cheese is extremely high in fat, so are nuts - fruit is also healthy, but some fruits are quite calorific. The other side of it is portion size. Many people who can’t understand why they aren’t losing weight are actually eating too much, quantity-wise. Use a small plate, that helps! As you are doing a lot of exercise, you must be eating too many calories, unless there is a medical reason why your metabolism is slow.

I don’t eat any butter or spread apart from an extra-light cheese one, never have fried foods, very rarely have chocolate, no dressings of any sort, no sauces containing cream, no hard cheeses, very little meat. I eat a lot of pasta with a simple tomato-based sauce.

I’ll remember you in my prayers and hope you can get to where you want to be. It’s a hard thing to do (I’ve also stopped smoking, and that’s easier IMO), but if you think of it as a different way of eating rather than a diet, it helps.

The very best of luck to you. :slight_smile:


Have you tried the ‘my fitness pal’ app? It’s very simple to use and allows you to easily track and plan your diet and exercise on your phone. Choose the ‘lose a pound a week’ option and then just use the app. Start small; eat sensibly and do three 30 minute workouts per week for now. Don’t obsess about it; weigh and measure once a week and just build on each day as best you can.

I’m great at losing weight! I get all fired up; lose weight then burn out. Over and over and over… Once I decided to just eat well; no fads and no extreme measures, the weight came off and; while I’ve a stone or so to go; I’m doing nicely.

Don’t be so hard on yourself. You don’t have to be ‘thin’; just to the point where you feel good in your clothes and have energy. That could be any size at all; it’s a very individual thing.

Best of luck; do let us know how you’re getting on!

Jenny x

Two things that may help:

  1. As my nutritionist/RN said, 'Weight is affected 20% from exercise and 80% from diet." If you’re eating as you did before, the exercise isn’t going to do much for weight loss.

  2. What most people (especially overweight people) consider ‘healthy’ food is just not. There’s a lot of marketing and confusing information clouding what ‘healthy’ is and even bad nutritionists who buy into the hype and have low standards for clients (as if clients can’t make actually good choices). What’s more important than calorie count is calorie quality. You can’t just eat 100 calories of garbage and equate it 100 calories of good food. In other words, not all calories are equal.

Most people do not eat well consistently. It takes time to change your taste palette. Be patient with yourself, but do move towards a lot less sugar and a lot more whole foods.

Thanks for all of your responses.

I weigh 126 pounds and I’m 5’3’’. I feel like I’m the fattest person around because a girl told me that she’s 5’3’’ and 106 pounds and another girl told me she was 5’5’’ and 110 pounds. Also, a guy that I liked as more than a friend stopped talking to me because he thought I was too fat.

Yes, I do follow a vegetarian diet and by “normal portion” I mean the same that others eat. I never use sugar in my cooking and haven’t had fast food or anything but water for years.

I use the fitness pal forums.

:eek: That’s brilliant, I wish I weighed the same as you!
You’re not fat at that weight and height, you really aren’t. Your friend who’s 106lbs must be very slim/skinny, your taller friend likewise.

If a guy is saying you’re fat, he is the one with the problem, quite honestly. Ignore my previous advice and please continue as you are! :slight_smile:

Gosh! You really dodged a bullet with that guy! Thank God!!

Try the app on for size; it gives you calorie and nutrition guidelines and you log your meals as you go. The searchable database is VAST and there’s a clever little barcode scanner thingy on it, too so you can get the details on your particular brand of pasta, for example.

I’ve had great success with it; my goal is 126lbs and I’ve about 18 to go. As I said; I’ve ditched extreme measures and have taken a ‘slow and steady’ approach.

I’ve peeked at those forums but abandoned ship because I kept running into nutters… Maybe it’s me? LOL!!! :wink:

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