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10 tips to keep your body in shape as a writer

Stephenie Meyer, E. L. James, Cassandra Clare: great minds in overweight bodies.

J. K. Rowling, Stephen King, Haruki Murakami: great minds in slim bodies.

Writing has really nothing to do with weight. Weight is a matter of health and lifestyle. Today I am sharing what works for me:

  1. Do regular medical checks. If you are gaining weight and you don’t know why, you should go to see a doctor. There are many reasons why people become obese, some of them being genetics, leptine resistence, insulin problems, etc.
  2. Check on your beliefs related to writing. Do you believe that writing is intense brain work which requires extra fuel (e.g. hot chocolate)? Do you think that authors are free from staying in shape because they are not typical celebrities? Does writing take such a big role in your life that you are somewhat neglecting all the other aspects?
  3. Be spiritually fat. Do you feel fulfilled? Or do you have a lack within yourself that you are trying to fill with food? Do you use food as comfort? As reward? Write a list of healthy mood uplifters and do them more often. Stay happy, and you won’t need to restock happiness with calories.
  4. Keep an attitude of self love. Mentally yelling at your body and starving it on restrictive diets is a form of self abuse. Don’t do it. Keep an attitude of self love, no matter what is your weight. (Related article: do you love yourself as a writer?)
  5. Eat only when you are hungry. When I am hungry, I eat. When I am not hungry, I don’t eat. It’s as simple as that. If I want to treat myself, I wait until I’m hungry.
  6. Put the snacks away from your writing place. If you put the snacks within the reach of your hand, half an hour later they will be gone. You could eat all day like this without noticing that you’ve eaten – still be hungry on dinner time.
  7. If you have to sip something while writing, choose unsweetened drinks. For example: coffee, tea (black, green, herbal, fruit), water with lemon… As long as you don’t add sugar or honey to those, they have zero calories and fill you up!
  8. Stay busy writing (but don’t overdo it). Sometimes I am so focused on a chapter, that I forget about eating. When I remind myself, usually 6 hours have passed from the last time I’ve eaten. If you are like me, maybe setting an alarm clock to regulate meal times is a good idea.
  9. Pick up a sport and treat it as importantly as writing. People say that you should have three hobbies: one to be creative, one to keep you in shape and one to make you money.
  10. Try to be as active as you can, when you don’t write. I love looking for new, interesting places, and as long as my mind is entertained, I don’t mind walking long distances. Being active doesn’t mean you have to sweat at the gym. Even a short break for dancing to your two favorite songs is some form of movement.


Hi! I am an author. I've published my debut novel in 2015 in Poland ("Dokąd teraz popłynę?"). My main genre is fantasy and magical realism. I often discuss socially difficult topics in my works and try to pass on a message of hope. I am always inspired and I never stop writing. My writing inspirations are Bruno Schulz, Pablo Neruda, Kiran Desai and Haruki Murakami. In my private life I am a polyglot. I believe in the Law Of Attraction and I write about it on UltimateManifester at Wordpress.

4 thoughts on “10 tips to keep your body in shape as a writer

  1. Hi! This is a great article! It’s true that authors often sacrifice their health for writing. I was at a NaNoWriMo event once, and they had a panel of authors speaking. One author said to eat soda and frozen pizza all throughout NaNo because you need to save time. I think that keeping yourself in shape is important (agreeing with you) and when I exercise regularly, I can think better. However, the “eat when you’re hungry” idea doesn’t work for everyone. I need to force myself to sit down and eat sometimes because I simply don’t feel hungry even though I haven’t eaten all day. So, just wanted to note that just eating when you feel hungry doesn’t work for everyone! : ) Nice article.

    1. Hey Emily! Thank you for this interesting comment! Poor NaNoWriMo author, haha. Did he succeed? When I lived in China, I spent a lot of time writing, and I also ordered pizza all the time… but since it was so difficult to buy cheese, I felt excused. Have you heard about intermittent fasting? It might be the right diet for you, if you are naturally skipping meals.

      1. That NaNo author has published many books, so I think she did succeed! I have heard of intermittent fasting, but that might not be the best for a growing teenager like me. : ) That’s an interesting story…Asians don’t usually eat cheese.

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