NY Times article on body image

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    NY Times article on body image

    Opinion - Smash the Wellness Industry

    I really liked this article. it was flawed, imho, by not mentioning the harm this industry does to men as well. (Less, traditionally, then has been done to women but that almost makes it worse for the men it does impact bc it makes them feel emasculated in some way, or that they should not bring it up.) But otherwise it was fairly insiteful.

    But one sentence really struck home to me.

    "We can respect our bodies without loving them."

    For me, it is as psychologically damaging to be "expected" to love my body as the expectation my body meet some goddamn beauty standard is. I am too susceptible to outside stimulation, and will never meet said standard. But I can still hope to be comfortable in my skin. To not injure myself bc "fuck you stupid body just shut up and do a few more reps/miles". To not starve myself or eat half the kitchen at 10pm (or 1 followed by 2 followed by 1.... ad nauseam). Respect is something I can manage without moving to a desert island or gouging out my eyes, love isn't. Adding "being ashamed of the fact that I do not love my body" to my list of issues helps no one, least of all me.

    I neither love nor hate my body. It has done reasonably well by me for well over half a century and now it needs more maintenance than previously.
    That's what I'm doing here. Maintenance.
    Working at staying alive, rather than just surviving.
    I try very hard to not be too harsh on the teens who want to be as cut as Wolverine (for example). I watched an episode of ANW last night and saw some impressive physiques - male and female - but none resembled a competitive Body Builder's. These bodies were more for Go than for Show.
    While I look forward to the day my 40"-waist pants no longer fit, my diet is aimed at my diabetes, not my weight.
    FWIW: my 38" pants fit just fine, but so do the 40" ones, still.


      This is interesting. As a teen and in my 20's I was always skinny. I rode my bike a lot and had a healthy relationship with food. I had a feeling that if I ever gained weight it would be hard to deal with. As I got older I learned to embrace that I was not feeling how I wanted to feel. I had some private health issues that I chose to tackle with food. As such, I gained weight. I found myself in a weird situation. I was feeling better than ever, and I was over weight. Because I am vegan, I fell for the whole clean eating plant based thing... "if you eat this way you will be lean stuff". The food pyramid never worked for me because the more active I got, the more grains I ate.

      The reality is that the way I eat does not match any particular system or plan. I have morphed a few plans together because my body told me it liked it like that. Do I eat clean? Yes. But that is just because my body hums really well like that. I eat intuitively as well.

      A few weeks ago I ran into a guy while running and we ended up talking about calorie deficits. He was a lot taller than me and he was admitting that he thought he should bring the calorie deficit up and be eating 1800 calories a day. I did not have the heart to tell him that I for sure ate way more than that.

      I don't count calories. I don't weight myself. I don't measure. And yet, as time passes I am getting fitter and fitter. I just did Boxer's week and was amazed at the results. My jeans are looser. My pj pants actually fit me well again. Most importantly I am starting to feel like the past KalePower who just ate and did not worry about anything, but with way more muscle.

      Our bodies and our brains know what they need. And exercise is the thing that pulls it all together.

      I think discussions about wellness has its place but everyone needs to start having positive discussions about it and how it relates with the rest of their lives. We eat everyday, and we live everyday. Life needs to be embraced without worrying about food.