“I need to concentrate on losing weight right now. I’ll [do things I want to do] when I reach my goal weight.”
Days, weeks, and months and years that I will never get back tracking every bit of food, calculating points, eating gross pre-packaged food, giving up sugar, wheat, dairy, meat, drinking weight loss shakes, no popcorn at the movies, no cake on my birthday, punishing my body at the gym. Believing that everyone who tries hard enough becomes thin.
One day a friend invited me to a dance class and my first question was “but how good of a cardio workout is it really – how many calories do you think you burn?”. My friend looked at me like I had three heads and asked “What the hell kind of question is that – do you want to dance or not?” It hit me – I did want to dance. I love to dance. How had this many years gone by without dancing?
I had spent years only moving my body with the goal of changing the size or shape of it – only choosing the things that burned the most calories even if I hated doing them. I snapped, I had had enough. I went to dance class. I didn’t try to estimate the calories that I was burning, I moved because I love to move. I danced because I love to dance.
At that point I didn’t know what I know now – that weight loss hardly ever works and that my experience was the same as almost everyone who tries to lose weight. But sill, I decided to try some of the other things that I had been putting off until I reached my ever elusive goal weight, maybe I could do them fat.
It’s really scary to think of the life I would have had if I hadn’t made that decision. My body and I have had some crazy awesome adventures. I haven’t succeeded at everything I’ve tried (I once had my money returned by a hip hop instructor who said “You’re obviously a very talented dancer but baby, this isn’t for you.”) but at least I tried instead restricting 3500 calories a week and dripping sweat all over an elliptical machine for 3500 calories a week and not losing the 2 pounds I was promised and feeling like a failure without even trying to hip hop.
Whatever you’re dreaming of, what if you did it now with the body you have now. What if you tried it, raised your physical voice, moved your body for the sheer joy of movement, right now. What if?
Want some support? Check out the Fit Fatties Forum, a place for people of all sizes to talk about fitness from a Health at Every Size Perspective. We have groups for newbies, oldbies, runner, and more
I’m a big fan of putting pictures of active fatties out in the world. I’ll show you mine, you can show me yours (which is to say you can put awesome pictures and videos of you in the comments to encourage others…)
Things my big gigantic 5’4, 284 pound, Class 3 Super Obese, top of the BMI chart body can do: