Friday, 24 July 2009

Fighting the flab

Jon's amusing post about salad dodgers made me think.

It is nearly 7 full months since I started my fat challenge. It started as friendly banter but has got way more serious than that.

I weighed in at 12 stone, two pounds, six ounces yesterday morning.

That sounds a bit different to thirteen stone 8 pounds in January.

I am still just over two pounds off my target weight, but even so, that is equivalent weight of just over 9 bags of sugar lost from within my frame.

It has not been easy, and it has been very, very humbling.

  • I was not disciplined. God spoke to me really clearly about discipline and eating. Why are smoking and drinking seen as things to clearly avoid as a Christian yet unhealthy or excessive eating is OK? Are these Christian or cultural values? Some Christians would frown at someone having a cigarette outside the Church meeting, and then waddle past them to worship God. Does that fit? Well, those are a dependency. Doh! So is food. Well, those things damage your body which is a temple of the holy spirit. Doh! So does excessive sugar, or saturated fat, or salt.
  • The battle was lost. I was already fat, so what was the point? I was so used to being fat, I did not notice I was getting fatter. In my photos over the years I can see myself getting fatter. But at each stage I just saw myself as "fat", so why bother? I was fat at 21, and fat at 30, it is just at 30 I weighed two stone more.
  • My identity was wrong. I had modelled myself on the "funny fat guy". If people like Peter Kay and he is fat, then being funny is the answer. I did the whole "I am a bit overweight and I don't care" image, when in reality, I hated it.
  • My self image was wrong. I did not used to like going swimming. Ever since school I hated having to take my top off in front of people. I hated going to the beach if everyone else was just wearing shorts. My body image and my weight were so inextricably linked, and I was ashamed. Now I weigh nearly a stone and a half less, I still think I am fat. I still see a fat guy in the mirror. I don't feel thinner. I am on a journey of finding freedom.
  • It costs to choose healthy. Healthy food is expensive. Especially eating out, and even buying fresh stuff. Healthy is trendy so it is premium priced. Eating less is cheaper, but eating healthy can cost a lot more. I can see now why people on a budget load their trolleys with junk food on Buy-one-get-one-free offers. Obesity is about economics as much as anything else, and then it becomes learned behaviour.
  • I don't have the time. Healthy food takes time. Preparation time. Buying it fresh takes time. Finding a recipe takes time. "Bung a pizza in the oven" fits a modern lifestyle a bit better than a reduced fat Halloumi salad.
  • My clothes don't fit. People keep joking with me that my clothes don't fit. I can't wear trousers without a belt. Most of them are 34" and I am comfy in a 32" now. I bought a suit for my 30th birthday (I had been unable to wear the trousers on my old suit for about 6 years). Within 4 months of purchase it does not fit me. I am going to need to spend quite a bit of money on new clothes: doh!
  • It is a journey. I am on a journey. The reason for writing this post is because as it says on the top, I want to wear my heart on my sleeve. I am trusting God, learning about Him and learning about myself. It is really quite profound, really quite deep, and really quite humbling. I don't think there is a "weight" at which I will be "content" because actually, I need healing in my mind about my body image. My weight won't do it. I won't "achieve" it. I need God's help to take it captive and be free of it. I have never really dared to think that I could before, but now I will, and am doing. The discipline is there, the battle is being won, the identity is changing, the body image is changing, the financial cost and time costs are being budgeted for, I will buy some new clothes and continue this journey, with my heart on my sleeve.

1 comment:

dave bish said...

I've just gotten back down to being able to wear the 32" suit trousers I got married in seven years ago... still plenty of work to do to be as fit and healthy as I ought to be. Keep going.