Fat shaming- Part 1: my psycho-educational gift to you

It’s new years, which means my gym is infested with people who will quit by March, it’s impossible to get a treadmill, and everyone I know is on a “diet”.

I’d like to take this opportunity to voice some complaints, and then to drop some knowlegde on you.

One of my biggest pet peeves about running/marathoning/triathloning is the witless saps who ask me:

1.) “So how much weight did you lose training for your marathon?”

2.) “Did you do the marathon to lose weight?”

First of all, running a marathon isn’t about losing weight. It’s about accomplishing a big scary goal. It’s about making a plan and working really really hard to get what you want. It’s about making good friends, celebrating small victories, and learning how to deal with inevitable failures along the way. It’s as much about becoming a stronger person as it is about building a stronger body.

Second of all, it’s time for me to drop some knowledge now. For the love of Blog, can we all eliminate the words fat and skinny from our collective vernacular? Let’s take a not so novel approach and address weight the same way the National Institute of Health does- with four categories. Bodies are either underweight, healthy weight, overweight, or obese.

Recently a colleague asked me to look at her and tell her if she was overweight. This broke my heart. Ladies, healthy weight and overweight are not about the way you look. They’re determined most accurately by BMI charts. A BMI chart uses a person’s height and weight to come up with an index. The index gives us a fairly reliable and easy way to compare body mass.

BMI 2

Use the chart to determine your BMI, and set your goals from there.

Please remember to treat yourself the same way you’d treat other people. If you had a friend who was training for a marathon, you’d encourage them to create a plan, and stick to it even when obstacles made the plan difficult. If you’re trying to reach a healthy BMI, please treat your fitness and nutrition plan the same way. You will not go from a BMI of 30 to 20 by March….but I didn’t go from 5K to marathon overnight either. Measure your success one week at a time, embrace your failures, encourage yourself the way you’ve encouraged me during my training. Make your goals challenging, measurable, and attainable. Remember that the harder you work, the more rewarding it is in the end.

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About marathonermegan

Training for my first marathon
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