I’ll admit that I’ve become a little bit obsessed recently with body image and how people view themselves. The Biggest Loser: I’m holding you responsible for this. Ever since I started reading the attacks against this show, I feel like I’ve been on a mission to get a bit of a pulse on how this society feels about itself.
It turns out: there is this new(ish) movement called the Fat Acceptance Movement. Apparently, it is a tangental of the older movement that encourages a healthy lifestyle, regardless of size. This movement is attempting to make it acceptable and, in some cases, protected to be overweight. While I agree with the aspect of pursuing a healthy lifestyle at any size, I’m not sure how I feel about the Fat Acceptance Movement. For starters, it feels a bit like it is a method for finding excuses. I’ve given up on excuses a long long time ago. Yes, genetics do play a role. Yes, our society is gearing more towards a sedentary lifestyle. Yes, it can be cheaper to eat horribly. But…that doesn’t make it right for me.
Let me continue by stating that I do not believe that anyone should be made the focus of mean spirited ridicule due to their size. However, I also don’t believe in sugar coating their situation either. I was fat (still overweight). I was obese. It was what it was. By making it acceptable for me to be that way, it only made things worse for me. I know that a good part of one’s self worth is tied to body image. I also know that people’s opinions can vary about body image. If you are truly happy as a bigger person, then that’s okay. Just don’t expect the rest of society to accommodate so easily. Part of me can’t believe I just said that.
In looking at myself, as a gay man, I can see how similar things have been said about being gay. “It’s okay to be gay, just don’t expect us to accept it.” The difference here is that being obese is, for the most part, a choice. It can be the direct result of putting too much into your system and not expending enough energy to get rid of it. I know it is hard to lose weight. I’ve done it.
Much of the other writers out there have taken this movement to task in a negative fashion. They insult obese people in an attempt to get them to change. While I think a good number of people need it, there are still better ways to get a message. One key message received from my readings was that we all have a social responsibility to each other to be and stay healthy. There actually is a point where someone else being obese could jeopardize my own ability to survive. The example of a burning building was given. An very obese person may end up blocking potential exits or slowing the evacuation route of others. For me, that’s a bit much. I see social responsibility more from a financial burden on society. Obese people tend to have more health issues and majorly tax our system. If I am obese with children and I end up dying early…who will care for my children. I see social responsibility more from the viewpoint that we must all do our part to not cause an unneeded burden to society through our own actions.
This is not my declaration of war on fat. This is just part of why I chose to change myself.
In other news… three weeks of Insanity are now complete. Feeling good still, but not feeling any lighter. Weigh day is coming up. Here’s hoping that it’s a good one for weight loss.
My 1/2 marathon company sent me an e-mail with the ability to track the run in real time. I thought it was kind of neat, but I don’t see the need to pay 5 bucks to people can watch something else on their smart phones.
I’ve picked a date for my marathon. More like a week range. But it’ll be during early March for ASU’s spring break. Now I just need to find a city with one happening that I’ve always wanted to visit….