Pun totally intended.
You see, guys, I’m fat.
And I don’t mean this in a I-feel-kind-of-puffy-today way. Or a Do-these-jeans-make-my-butt-look-big way. Or even a I’m-going-to-say-I’m-fat-so-that-you-guys-tell-me-I’m-not-fat-okay? way.
The truth is that I am fat. As in overweight. As in medically and scientifically so.
And I always have been – at least as an adult.
Just sometimes I’m fatter than others.
Even when I was living in Japan and running marathons and eating tofu on a regular basis, I was still technically overweight.
And then I moved to Thailand where I ate ALL THE PAD THAI and then to Malaysia where I ate ALL THE ROTI and then on to China where I ate ALL THE DUMPLINGS.
And I went from running every-single-day-and-extra-on-weekends to running every-other-day-kind-of-sometimes.
And then the next thing I knew I had gained forty pounds. In three years. Because I’m talented like that.
When I came home last summer, everyone was like, “Wow, you look well fed. Weren’t you just in Asia? Where they eat tofu and don’t have any cheese? How come you can’t fit into your pants anymore?”
I was even a little worried I had some kind of weird medical condition. Something to explain all the pounds I’d managed to pile on. Something, besides, you know, ALL THE DUMPLINGS. So I went to the doctor and had a whole bunch of tests done.
It turned out that I’m totally healthy.
Besides being, well, you know, fat.While I can’t say I’ve been completely honest about how much weight I’ve gained over the past few years, I have talked about my size before on my blog.
But usually when I write about my body it’s in a way that’s not very nice.
I make jokes about my cankley man-calves.
I snark about my lack of upper body strength.
I poke fun at how I can’t fit into my pants.
I don’t talk about the fact that I have pretty kick ass collarbones. Seriously, you guys. Check these bad boys out.
Or how my eyes can change color depending on what I’m wearing. Or depending on the color of the barn I happen to be standing next to.
Or how, sure, I have man-calves, but they’re rock hard which I’m actually, really proud of. I mean, I could bench press an ox with these puppies. Is it even possible to bench press with your calves? Is that a thing? Because if it is, I should totally be the Olympic champion of calf-bench-pressing. I really should.I also very rarely share full-length photos of myself on this blog.
This is partly because I travel by myself so I’m usually doing the one-arm-above-the-head-selfie thing. Which automatically makes everyone look like a Brazilian super model. Seriously. You should try it sometime.
Even when I do get a full-length photo of myself, I usually don’t post it because I only see the bad stuff. The double chins. The flabby upper arms. The squishy middle bits and the bursting-out-of-my-pants bottom parts.
Like this photo from my 10K run on the Great Wall of China. Which I never posted because I felt like it made my body look too lumpy.
Nevermind that this was the exact same body that had just spent the afternoon climbing up this:
I’m going on a diet.
But not the kind you think.
I’m not cutting out the carbs. Nope. Because, seriously, you guys, I did that for a month once, and I wanted to KILL ALL THE PEOPLE.
Instead, I’m cutting out the mean comments and thoughts about my body.
I’m keeping the snacks, but I’m getting rid of all the body-snarking.
I’m going to stop saying stuff like “Cankley man-calves.” And start saying stuff like, “Kick ass collarbones!”
Because here’s the thing, guys, all the put-downs and insults aren’t helpful. Not even a little bit. Telling myself I have cankles doesn’t make me want to eat less cupcakes — it just makes me want to eat more.
Plus, I’m starting to realize how incredibly lucky I am to be in the body that I’m in — a body that is healthy, even if it can’t fit into my pants.
So it’s time to cut out the self-hate and start amping up the self-love.
After all, if this was a stranger or a friend or a boyfriend or even a family member making all these mean cracks about how my thighs touch and my upper arms are slowly growing wings, I wouldn’t put up with it. I really wouldn’t.
So why am I letting myself get away with this?
Who do I think I am anyway?Not only am I going to cut out the body-snarking, I’m also going to start posting a lot more full-length photos of myself on my blog.
Because, sure, my thighs touch, but those are GREAT WALL OF FREAKING CHINA CLIMBING THIGHS, OKAY?
They are also bike-riding-around-Mackinac-Island thighs.
And 5-K-that-I-kind-of-forgot-to-tell-you-about-but-there-were-drag-queens-and-it-was-awesome thighs.
I know, I know. This blog is pretty much always about me.
But I’m trying something different today.
I’m writing this post about you, too.
I’m writing this to say that it’s time for you to stop it, too, okay?
Because chances are if you’re a girl, you’re a total snarky jerk to your body. Heck, you may even be a snarky jerk to your body if you’re a guy. I don’t mean to discriminate. I just don’t really know how boys work
And, well, you need to stop it.
All of it.
You need to stop being a jerk to yourself.
You need to stop seeing your body as something you need to change and start seeing it as something you need to cherish.
You need to stop focusing on the parts of you that wobble and start focusing on the parts of you that totally and completely kick ass. And keep on focusing on those parts – those kick ass parts of you – until they become more than just parts, they become the whole.
Until you’re more than just a really awesome pair of collarbones and some bench-pressing calf muscles.
Until you become the awesomest, most kick-assiest person you can be — the kind of person who doesn’t put up with any kind of snark from anybody.
Not even from yourself.
I usually write a question at the end of each of my posts, but since I’m already changing stuff up this week, I’ve decided to end this post with some challenges. First, I challenge you to stop being a jerk to yourself. Like, now. Secondly, if you’re the type of person who hardly ever takes full-length photos of yourself because all you see are the bad bits, I want you to stop that, too. I want you to take some full-length photos of yourself and share them with the world, so everyone can see your awesome shoulder bones/shins-of-steel/what-have-you. If you have a blog, post some full-length photos of yourself on your blog. Leave the link below, and I’ll share it on Facebook and Twitter. Or if you don’t have a blog, then send your full-length photo* to email@example.com and I’ll post it in a photo album on my Facebook page. *And, umm, by full-length photos I mean FULLY CLOTHED full-length photos. Because I love you, but I don’t even know you, really.