I often get comments on my blog and in real life from people who feel it is their moral obligation to tell me why I am fat and how to best fix that. I’ve been told I eat too much or not the right things (like they are watching me) and I don’t exercise enough or at all. Despite that I often blog about fun exercises people can do and that chronic dieters need to learn to eat normally again, these naysayers (usually naturally slender people) assume that if a person is fat, they have to be eating too much or not doing enough exercise.
These holier than thou commenters don’t know me at all. They don’t know that I have done the exact advice they are now giving me. There was a time I reduced calories and did aerobic exercise. Seventeen years of low cal, low fat, low carb, and not just crash diets either. I did all the ones that claimed they weren’t diets but lifestyle changes. Every single one of these diets failed. Some of them lasted longer, including one that actually lasted two years. The results were the same. I’d lose about 30 pounds, and then I would stop. During that time, I’d think about food all the time. This exact thing happened in the Ancel Keys starvation study. Men were put in a semi-starvation state (the exact amount of some diets) and became preoccupied with food. That was me I was dreaming of raiding the fridge and when I woke up I thought about breakfast, after breakfast I thought about lunch and the cycle continued. Once I stopped dieting, I eventually lost that preoccupation with food. I don’t think about calorie counts but how my body will react to a certain food.
My favorite comment was one that claimed I wasn’t exercising enough. In the past I have encouraged people to move to the best of their abilities, the key word being abilities. Not everyone is a natural athlete, especially me. I associate gym classes as being a target of dodgeballs, thin women looking at me wondering why the fattie is doing aerobics and pain, the severe tendon damage I did to my foot because I used to jog on flat feet.
I would also like to add time. Diet and exercise had stolen so much of my precious time. Driving to the gym to watch stupid things on TV while I walked the treadmill; spending time counting calories, carbs, fats. Now I refuse to give my precious time for weight loss. Instead I relearn to enjoy food and movement without focus on weight loss. This is why I walk everyday after work. I actually enjoy walking and it’s become part of my routine. But when I get home it isn’t that late and I have time to myself to read, play on the computer and be with my hubby while the naysayer is at the gym, working off the carrots she had for lunch in hopes she won't become me.
Which is all that it comes down too. The naysayer’s big problem is that they have to watch their calories, they have to do aerobic exercise for one hour, while I eat good foods when I’m hungry and take nice leisurely walks. They are jealous that they can’t eat and move slowly like I do.
But I could be wrong of course. Just like they make assumptions of me, I am now making some of them. To prove a point, that you don’t really know someone and you can’t make judgments on assumptions.