Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Piece of Advice #8: Lose the weight

There is no way to pussyfoot around this one: if you are fat and you want a decent future, you have to lose the weight.  Visceral fat is just death on the body.  It will make you slower, it will make moving more painful, and both of these will just compound the problem.  If you want to avoid diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, joint pain, and respiratory issues, you must lose the weight.  No, 10 pounds won't make you an invalid, but let's not kid ourselves.  It's 10 pounds now.  It'll be 10 more pounds next year if you do not address the problem - your overeating and lack of exercise.

The tone of this blog is somewhat no nonsense, I realize, but I do have sympathy for women fighting the weight battle because I fight the weight battle and I've been fighting it for over a decade.  Every day.  I exercise more than any other person my age that I know.  Every day, rain or shine, I go out into the weather and walk for at least and hour and fifteen minutes.  Where I live this is not always pleasant.  In fact, for 5 months of the year it's either unpleasant or extremely unpleasant (as in freeze-your-ass-off cold and risk slipping on treacherous sidewalks at all times).  Yet I do it - every day.  Rain or shine, cold or hot, sick or healthy, I go out there and walk the good walk with my dogs, or my son or my husband.  I walk because 11 years ago I realized that I was putting on weight faster than what I'd previously thought possible and was afraid of where it was going.  I started walking 30 minutes a day which staved off further weight gain, but didn't cause me to lose anything.  Then it was 45 minutes, then an hour, and now most of the time it's an hour and a half.  I lost the weight.

I walked when I worked full-time - on my lunch hour or after work.  I walked with an infant, with a toddler, with a preschooler.  My son can easily walk for 45 minutes with me with minimal complaint and does so fairly often.  I've played more games of "What kind of pirate do you think is hiding behind that tree?" and "What does your pig have in his lunchbox?" [answer: a  sloppy joe and a slopsicle] than I can count because he won't trudge on without entertainment but he's a little walker now like his mom.  And we've spent plenty of one-on-one together because of it.

If doing it for your health isn't enough motivation, I'll give you one more: neither men nor women respect women who are overweight.  And all of the fat positive propaganda in the world isn't going to change that.  Women like to feel superior to each other, and nothing makes that easier than having a fat friend.  Men are repulsed by fat on women, especially on young women who should still retain a girlish figure.  If you are looking for a relationship, being fat will be a huge barrier for you.  Most men just do not dig fat girls.  Period.  Skinny average looking girls will do better in the dating market than fat pretty ones.  If you are pretty and you are fat you have sabotaged your chances for finding a really good long term relationship.  Reverse that.  Lose the weight.

Now, I know this isn't fair.  There are plenty of guys out there that are fat and they can still get dates.  There are also guys who can eat anything they like and not gain weight.  My husband is one of them, and it is kind of infuriating.  And it isn't that a women's value is or should be only exterior.  Also, your food options work against you.  Fast food is cheap and tasty, but it is death in a bag - death for your body and death for your social life.

Unfortunately, none of this negates the fact that being fat will destroy opportunity after opportunity for you - chances for health and love and career success.  So knuckle down and lose the weight.

23 comments:

  1. Thanks, Athol Kay. I really enjoy your blog. Say hi to 40 for me. I'll be rendezvousing with him myself in about 9 more months.

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  2. CommentLuv is great, now I can see what bloggers are posting from my own comment page. This is a really good post, I love the no-nonsense approach. Facts are facts, and you've got lots of good ones here.

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  3. Once you learn the truth about the lies and misinformation that have been promulgated as "conventional wisdom" regarding dietary nutrition, the "battle of the bulge" is really not as hard as you think, nor does it require you to exercise like a she-demon.

    Check out these three blogs: http://www.fathead-movie.com/, http://www.marksdailyapple.com/, and the Weston Price Foundation's websites.

    Learn about what foods make you fat and suffer from ill health, and what foods are nutrient dense, invigorating and healing.

    Once you learn the truth, losing the weight is really almost effortless.

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  4. Hey, Susan! Thanks for stopping by.

    Keoni Galt - I appreciate your links. I will look through them; aging only makes my resistance to gaining weight harder and I can use some new wisdom.

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  5. This past month I started losing weight pretty fast (15 pounds in 3 weeks!) just by drinking a sugar free red bull an hour before I eat. When your energy levels are high your brain thinks it doesn't need so much food so it kills your appetite.

    I also found that if I eat some fish oil pills my fat cravings go down. And citrus has less carbs than any form of candy, and fills your sweet cravings.

    That and I found out grilling chicken breasts on my forman grill for 7 minutes (spiced with garlic and herb of course) tastes better than restaurant food and is only approximately 120 calories.

    Just some thoughts. Great blog by the way. I like how you have been breaking down the posts. It makes finding relevant ones pretty easy.

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  6. Thanks for your comments, Victor. I love citrus in cold weather and fruit anytime. I pick blueberries and cherries when they are in season and freeze them. They are better than candy too. I've never had a Red Bull - that's interesting that it suppresses your appetite. Good luck with your continued weight loss!

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  7. I had really good results with Weight Watchers (I did it online, I don't go in for all those meetings and such). It does a really good job of teaching you how much food you REALLY need and you start figuring out what is a waste of calories, etc. Highly recommended.

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  8. @Keoni - Hi! I'm a big time low carber too. Have been able to lose and keep the weight off for a while now (now am looking to lean out even more). Check out my blog! www.lowcarbish.blogspot.com
    @Grep - this is such a great post, and one that no one wants to address. I guess it is mean, especially when a petite woman of low weight is saying it. But it's true!!!!

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  9. I was inspired by this post to write on of my own! http://lowcarbish.blogspot.com/2010/07/importance-of-being-earnest-and-thin.html

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  10. Dream Puppy - I don't think it's mean. I think it's just true. It might be considered gloating if I didn't work all the time myself on not gaining the weight. But I do. I really work at it. I'm middle aged. My metabolism has begun to betray me.

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  11. I'm sorry, but I lost respect for you with this post. Curves are natural and feminine. Being massively obese is obviously bad -- that's a different story altogether -- but women look beautiful with soft Renaissance figures.

    I thought your blog was about rejecting the modern, androgynous standard set for women. Yet, you reject the traditional feminine standard of beauty for women.

    Venus, goddess of love, beauty and femininity, hardly 'repulsed men' with her curves.
    http://www.artchive.com/artchive/t/titian/titian_venus_of_urbino.jpg

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  12. This is a post that I wish people IRL would say more often. You're not being mean or lackig in empathy or anything like that -- you're just saying it how it really is! I constantly come across people I know in my life who make stupid comments about how I look all great and dandy and how I shouldn't lose weight when really, that's not the case.

    And anonymous person? Shut up. She's not advocating that women lose their curves. Why have curves become synonymous with extra weight?? Curves has to do with SHAPE not weight! Sheesh. I'm not even curvy and I know that.

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  13. yikes. i hate to admit it but this is true. i used to bristle at the suggestions but everyone i know who is married agrees that men like thin women. i have lost weight because of medication but i am still technically overweight by about 15 lbs or so. i need to get back to exercising... though i hate it so!

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  14. I'm so glad I found your blog last night (at 11 pm) through Susan Walsh (reading 20 traits of narcistic women. Great article, Susan!). From there I clicked on Kelly from NY blog about chivalry is dead. Then I found Athol Kay's blog through Kelly's commentator, Benjamin, from there I found "Humble Libertarian". Then Alpha blog, then this blog. It's a long journey as you can see :)) Thank you so much, everyone! I'm a big fan of all of you!

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  15. When I'm fit, which I'm admittedly not at the moment, my body shape is such that men who only like thin women aren't interested in me, anyway. (It's not about curves - it's about a short, squat physique, with largeish bones, and a tendency to bulk up with muscle. I'm not sleek and trim, or even curvy but slim, and I never would be, unless I literally starved myself.)

    So, the men who only like thin women are out for me, anyway. And, you know...despite being overweight, I have a great marriage *and* an active sex life with a man who thinks I'm really, really hot.

    Lose weight. Don't lose weight. I don't care about anyone else's weight, one way or the other. But, blanket statements like "Men are repulsed by fat on women" serve no real purpose. (Oh - and I didn't have a "girlish figure" even when I was 13.)

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  16. I think that this is the first time I have ever heard a woman anywhere admit this. Thank you for having the courage to do so.

    One of the things that many young women do not understand is that besides men's basic biological reaction to overweight women due to it often severely reducing the possibility of pregnancy (too much weight completely screws up women's hormonal balance essential to a successful pregnancy), wiser men use it as a test. If you are overweight, especially if you don't know how to cook, you are most likely going to make any children of yours overweight too.

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  17. Pretty sure this is a message most women get. Yet despite the multitudes of information out there obesity in American men and women are still the norm.

    Shame there's few support telling men to lose the weight and get a manly build.

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  18. Unfortunately, this entry ignores the ever-increasing body of research that points out that weight is *not* completely under an individual's conscious control. It ignores the reality that the body actively resists both weight loss and attempts to maintain of lower weight. For example, a weight-reduced body actually changes muscle fibers so as to burn fewer calories.

    Grerp heavily emphasizes the need to exercise. Yes, exercise is wonderful and health-promoting, but for most people even regular exercise will not cause significant weight loss.

    And I have to say, I disagree with this entry. It perpetuates the same old uninformed anti-fat falsehoods and biases that I have heard my whole life. I have been obese since age 9, and I'm almost 40 now. I've also been dieting on and off since age 9, and....I'm still obese, although not at the fattest I've ever been. After much research and reading, I finally have realized it's not a battle I can win. And even with being fat, I still managed to have a decent white-collar job and even to find a husband. Though what Grep says about fat hindering one's opportunities is true, but it doesn't DESTROY them. A fat woman will just have to work harder at getting what she wants, much as a naturally unattractive or disabled woman will.

    As far as the statement of "neither men nor women respect women who are overweight. " That's simply not true as a blanket statement. Potential mistreatment at the hands of others is also a terrible reason to advise someone to change herself. Let the responsibility remain with those who perpetrate injustice.

    Some better advice from Grerp would be to 1) not become overweight if you are normal weight now and 2) to maintain your weight if you are fat, exercise and avoid future weight gain, and do do the best with what you've got....while realizing it does handicap you.

    To find out more about the science and medicine behind weight control I highly recommend reading these two sources, both blogs maintained by doctors who specialize in obesity treatment:

    http://www.weightymatters.ca/
    http://www.drsharma.ca/

    And please read Tara Parker-Pope's article "The Fat Trap", http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/magazine/tara-parker-pope-fat-trap.html?pagewanted=all

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  19. Continued: Dr. Sharma's blog has a recent post that points out that sustainable weight loss of a large percentage of one's body weight is typically beyond the ability for most people to accomplish:

    "Why Diet and Exercise is Not a Treatment for Obesity" http://www.drsharma.ca/why-diet-and-exercise-is-not-a-treatment-for-obesity.html

    "...the biology of the post-weight loss state is nothing like the biology of someone who has never lost weight. There are countless ways in which the psychoneurobiology, energy physiology and metabolism in anyone who has lost weight are remarkably different from someone ‘naturally’ of that weight....all individuals or animals in a post-weight-loss state face considerable ‘homeostatic pressure’ that aims to drive their weight back to initial levels."

    Some suggestions for future posts on Grerp's blog: "Don't Let Your Kids Get Fat" and "Depression and Anxiety Can Happen To Kids Too; Take it Seriously".

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  20. "If you are pretty and you are fat you have sabotaged your chances for finding a really good long term relationship."

    And that is utter falsehood and the worst sentence in this whole post. My marriage and my husband stand in direct contradiction to this statement, and I'm far from the only fat woman to have a wonderful husband (and I was 220 lbs when we met, by the way).

    You will undoubtedly have to look harder and longer to find a good man if you're fat, but it IS possible.

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  21. Losing weight is not a big problem, you need a strong desire and little bit effort, that will make you slim. Check the calorie intake each and every day, take more vegetables,leafy veggies, fruits and less carbs. Drink plenty of water. Drink lemon juice with honey on empty stomach. This will helps you to lose weight.
    Use natural appetite suppressants, which will keep you with the feeling of fullness of your appetite. So that you will eat less and also it will gradually increases the metabolism rate. So that you will lose your weight faster. Do exercises or yoga daily to curve your body.

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