5 Ways To Handle A Bad Body Day

hands in a heart shape with text that reads 5 days to handle a bad body day

Ever have a bad body day? Me too. Yep, even body-positive nutritionists have bad body days from time to time – we’re only human.

The trouble with bad body days is that they can lead to self-deprecating thoughts that can spiral downhill and affect our thoughts about everything we do. The trick is learning how to handle a bad body day and what you can do to shake them off. And if you put these tips into action over and over again, you’ll find that the bad body days become far and few between.

1) Functional:

If you’re standing in front of the mirror grumbling about your thighs / belly / arms, ask yourself, what does that part of your body DO?

Those legs are for walking / running / biking and they work hard carrying you places. That belly is for digesting food / keeping you energized / maybe you’ve grown a human in there. Those arms are for hugging / carrying things / painting / chopping / whatever.

The point is that your body works hard for you, and it deserves your love and respect.

(Please note, I’m aware that not every person’s body parts are able to perform the above, but they do support a mind able to perform tasks and express love in other ways.)

2) Visual:

If you’re looking critically at the shapes, lines, and textures of your body, step back and think for a moment. Where would you see those same shapes, lines, and textures and think they were beautiful?

Picture body creases or rolls as a comfy, soft pile of blankets. Picture cellulite as the bumpy surface of orange peel. The rounded curve of a thigh as a rolling hill.

Why is it that those things are beautiful but your body is not? Spoiler: your body is beautiful.

3) Tactile:

If you close your eyes and put your hands on your body, does it feel good to be touched there? Can you shift judgement away and just sense what’s under your fingertips and be intrigued by the texture?

One of my favourite things to do is knead soft, warm, bread dough, so why would the same sensation on my body be unpleasant? Right? It isn’t.

4) Critical:

Ask yourself where you learned that looking the way you do isn’t okay. Who taught you that?

As a society, we’ve been programmed towards a particular beauty standard, and one that’s also unrealistic, unsustainable, and harmful. We need to push back against this, and reset the standard to include all bodies.

If it was an individual, what were their motives? How do they benefit from you thinking your body isn’t okay? And do you benefit from having this individual in your life?

5) Label:

When talking to or about your body, shift to using a deliberate and loving label. My awesome belly. My strong arms. My mighty thighs. Positive and loving self-talk goes a long way.

And please, don’t beat yourself up for having a bad body day now and then. We all have them – that crap is hard to unlearn. The point is that we recognize that’s what it is and have a toolbox we can use when we realize that it’s happening.

Here’s to radical self-love! Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all.


  1. Tessa says

    There are so many rubinesque female subjects in European Art Galleries that are nothing short of beautiful. It just doesn’t occur to anyone they are not perfect…even in a plus size dress. It begs a question. But a bit of toning…not a bad idea.

    • Katie Trant says

      I agree with you on all of the beautiful bodies out there. Perhaps we could reframe the toning into something that’s less about how the body part looks, and more about how it functions. For example, I want strong arms so I can pick up my grandchildren.

  2. Michelle says

    A well said and much appreciated reminder. Sadly, part of my every day however with a 9 year old daughter who VERY CLOSELY watches everything I do and say I’m making a valiant effort to change it. I refuse to allow her to repeat this self deprecating cycle. These reminders will help!

    • Katie Trant says

      You’re so right, Michelle. We need to break the cycle and teach our children better self love. Especially children who are growing up with social media and a real onslaught of messaging that we didn’t have.

  3. Beth says

    Thank you for this. I needed this today. Aging does things to the body that we can’t control, which is very frustrating and confusing. Looking at the big picture and being appreciative for what my body does is a much better way to deal with it.

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