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Through the journey of this blog alone, there is a 70 pound weight fluctuation of my body. No, I wasn’t pregnant during any duration of the time I’ve been blogging, no major surgeries or weight loss programs, just plain ol’ weight fluctuation. …probably caused by the obesity that runs rampant in my family, the poor eating habits that I often overcome then fall back into, and definitely the stress/mental health struggles. I’m aware of the way my body grows and shrinks, I have made many positive health adjustments, and I know I have a long way to go in order to truly have a healthy body. But, in the mean time? I refuse to stock 3 different closets worth of clothes and have to buy a new wardrobe with every season of weight loss/gain.
So, how exactly do I deal with fluctuating weight? Strategic shopping and dressing. Not only do I still have most of the same clothes that i had when I started this blog, the new items I’ve added would fit me even if I lost 50 pounds. I will say that part of this phenomenon is my body type/shape. I lose and gain weight in my stomach the most, so waistbands are the only real change when my weight fluctuates. Even still, I have some tips for you to deal with fluctuating weight.
1. Be mindful of the areas that gain/lose the most when you fluctuate weight
You can start to track your measurements, but this may come easily to you since – you know – it is your body and all! I have always labeled my stomach as my “trouble area,” the most difficult to lose weight from and the first place to gain weight. My arms also tend to thicken up before any other area. My shoulders, waist, and lower body? I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t even budge even an inch throughout all of that 70 pound fluctuation! (The comparison photo below shows how similar my collar bones, waist, and legs look…and how much my arms and hip/stomach area have fluctuated.)
In case you’re obsessing over my watermelon top, I found a couple!
2. Find clothing items that suit #1
Once you’re aware of the areas that you gain/lose the most when you fluctuate weight, you can tailor your closet to suit them. My arms fluctuate more heavily than other areas of my body, so I buy tops in sizes that would suit my arms at my heaviest weight. Why is it that the most adorable floral tops come in polyester, which has no stretch?!?! I buy those in a medium, which fits me at my largest size. There are some styles of tops that aren’t flattering when the torso isn’t fitted, but I have managed to work around this. Either only buy those styles in stretchy fabric to accommodate my arms OR use a buttoned blazer, a belt, or high-waisted pants/skirt to accentuate the waistline. (The pic below shows a poly shirt that has a tiny wiggle room for my arms right now – on the higher side of my fluctuating weight – and how I accommodated the flowy torso with a high-waisted skirt.)
In case you need you some midi skirts in your life…
3. And for the obvious…shop stretchy
I know this may sound icky and the opposite of stylish, but I promise there are ways to make stretchy fabulous. 😉 Most of my long-sleeved shirts are in a stretchy fabric, if my bottoms aren’t high-waisted then the waistband is stretchy, and I promise there isn’t a single pair of denim in my closet that isn’t both high-waisted and stretchy! (Below: literally stretchy bodysuit and stretchy waistband on this midi skirt.)