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Oops! I Can Barely Button My Pants

ButtonPantsI’m a total overachiever, you guys. No, I didn’t get all my shopping done on Friday. I’m an overachiever in the sense that I’ve gained all of my holiday weight BEFORE the holidays. That’s right: instead of putting on the pounds at Thanksgiving and Christmas, I’m speeding things up a bit and gaining weight … two months ago. And nope, not pregnant. Yep, totally working out consistently. So what gives? Why am I sending Jenn emergency texts that I can barely button my pants? I have a few theories …

Theory 1. I trained my ass off for the Tough Mudder. I worked really hard so I would make it through the event, and it worked! I finished a 10+ mile race and felt good afterwards. But all of that exercising made for a lot of recovery eating as I felt ravenous all the time. So I think I’ve been eating a little more than I actually need to eat, hence, weight gain.

Theory 2. Stretchy pants. All of that working out made for a lot of days where I wore yoga pants or running tights. It takes a lot of weight gain to get to a point that stretchy pants are too tight around the waist, what with their stretchiness and all. So while I’d notice here and there that my jeans were feeling tighter, the next day I’d be back in my workout clothes and feeling svelte again. Oops.

Theory 3. Stress. I never really gave stress due credit when it came to weight gain, but I’m totally on board now. I’ve been doing some freelance writing in addition to all my work here and on Mamas, and it’s just been a ton of juggling. Especially because I’m juggling the kids, too. Jenn and I have been working on edits on our book, too, which is just another layer added on. It’s kind of exhausting just putting in writing.

So when I texted Jenn an “I can’t button my pants!” text the week we were doing another round of book edits — a book that is chock full of awesome tips on how to eat right and live well and be more balanced in life — Jenn told me what I already knew. Make sure I’m eating balanced meals. Make sure I’m doing balanced workouts. Practice what we’re preaching! So I’m doing all of the above and I’m certain these pants will loosen up. Or at least get a little bit easier to button. Because while I don’t care whether the scale is 10 pounds above my norm, I do refuse to go jean shopping when there is a way around it!

Any other overachievers out there like me getting a jump on holiday weight gain? How are you keeping yourself in check? —Erin

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  1. Naomi says:

    AMEN AMEN AMEN I have recently gained weight as well and refuse to buy new jeans! SO I am working on getting leaner and meaner 🙂 Glad to know I am not the only one.

  2. Kristen says:

    Yay! Not that you gained weight, but that I’m not the only one. I think a lot of my reasons are the same, too. But I’m ready to get back on track now! Well, at least, as soon as all the Thanksgiving leftovers are gone. That pie ain’t gonna eat itself! (Ugh.)

  3. Suzannah says:

    I am reading about you and reading about me too! I trained hard for the Tough Mudder and noticed in October that I had gained a few pounds. Despite that we know all of this information, it is hard to balance everything all the time. Kids, work, exercise, family, (a social life?). Isn’t “balance” on a continuum too? Overall someone might have a balanced life but not everyday or every week?

  4. Ellen says:

    I call them Lululemon pounds; you feel awesome running around in lovely high-end yoga-inspired outfits but when it’s time to put on grown-up clothes OH NO.

  5. Jennifer says:

    I just diagnosed myself with the same problem yesterday. Since Tough Mudder and a half marathon I’ve been slacking. And now the holidays are upon me with all the yummy food and socializing. So I’ve added 10 mins to each cardio day and bumped my weight training back to where it should be. Gotta practice what I preach!

  6. Emily says:

    Totally relate to number 1!! I’ve been running 11 or 14 miles everyday around thanksgiving. And didn’t really over indulge and I still gained weight!! Ugh! So frustrating!! Now I’m just stressing about it!! Tomorrow is my first cardio day off in two weeks I think I deserve it!!

  7. Naomi says:

    Oh dear – me too! I am the heaviest I have been in years, have put on a good few kg in the last couple months and feeling pretty average. It’s all stress – I know, I have to make time to workout, but (ha – but!) the hours that I have been working in recent months have made that particularly difficult. I’ve also fallen into a take-away trap.

    At least it’s Summer here in Australia now, which makes it a lot easier to throw a salad together for dinner and get out for a walk at least in the mornings or evenings.

  8. Sarah says:

    You rock! I love how open and honest and down to earth you all are! It makes us all feel better and love your site all the more for it. 🙂

  9. Madison says:

    This Thanksgiving was not kind to me. I had to go back to my stretchy pants. I am back to working out. My goal is to get back into my regular jeans before Christmas, where I am sure I’ll be back to my stretchy pants again…

  10. James says:

    I like your stretchy pants theory and believe that I have experienced something similar. I wear sports pants every day as I go out walking alot, however I have a very sweet tooth so didn’t notice myself put on weight until it was too late. So you’re not the only one to put on weight pre Christmas. I only hope that I don’t put on more during Christmas!

  11. Samantha says:

    OMG! This is me! Right now! And while I haven’t been training extra hard for anything as of late the stretchy pants theory is rock solid! I have been wearing a lot of leggings and tights to work and then simply changing into workout gear or lounging gear and it has really made a difference. Not to mention the stress of my busy lifestyle at the moment. I once heard someone say that they typically buy their clothes a little too small so that they always have that feeling of ‘my pants are too tight – I should probably stop eating; workout; etc’. While that may be a step too far, there is something to be said about that theory!
    Thanks for sharing this! It makes me feel a little less crazy!

  12. Cody Karbum says:

    Very Interesting, I just finished becoming a certified personal trainer with the NCCPT and have started to take on clients. One client specifically has complained about this very same issue! All valid points mentioned in the above article, thanks for the helpful tips!

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  16. Abby says:

    I am totally experiencing this this year. Is this an issue for you still?

  17. Abby says:

    Old blog, but current issue! COVID has had me working out more which is causing me to eat more. Only gaining more weight. Can’t win

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