Thursday, July 13, 2006

An unhealthy obsession?

In a world where more than 1.2 billion people are considered overweight, and where almost 10 million of the rest are either anorexic or bulimic, where do you find a balance between how you think you look good and what is healthy?

I started the gym after a year hiatus (meaning I’m a lazy fuck LOL) three weeks ago. I kill myself every evening, doing cardiovascular workouts, which I split as follows:
  • Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays - 65 mins on the elliptical and a 1-hr spinning class.
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays - back to back RPM spinning classes, which I LOVE!
  • Saturdays and Sundays - 65 mins on the elliptical.
But I am not losing weight! Grrr. I think I actually gained some due to this enormous appetite I’ve developed. I’ve always loved to eat but what’s happening to me is not normal. It’s like there’s this starving monster living inside me; I’ll eat anything and everything—a lot of it all!

I decided I should start a well balanced diet and recruit the evil Harlot to do it with me. Last year we did a 5-day fast together (at least I did, don’t know if Harlot really kept up her end!) and we really supported each other through the dizziness, headaches, starving rage and the trying-to-eat-our-fingers-off from the hunger. We decided on a mix of different diets, mainly basing it on the Fit for Life book by Harvey Diamond, et al, and drinking 3 tbs of extra virgin coconut oil every day.

I told my BF about all of this and he doesn’t understand what my obsession with my body is. He says, and I quote, *wink* “You’re beautiful just like you are,” which is so Mark Darcy of him it makes me love him even more LOL. But all I can see when I look in the mirror is—well I won’t tell you what I see so as not to disgust you :P—but I’ll tell you what I DON’T see: I don’t see a pre-baby Britney’s body!!! Now, SHE looked beautiful just like she was!

I want to know, am I alone? Am I the only woman that has been obsessing about her weight, body and looks since the moment I turned 13? Will this ever end? Is there a point in life when you say, fuck it, I will eat what I want and look how God meant for me to look—and not like a scrawny stick on crack! And most of all, I want to know if this obsession the media and the world around us have created with being thin and having a hard body is healthy. I mean, look at those actresses and models I used to envy. Once upon a time they looked beyond fabulous, but now they’re so thin you can’t even tell if they’re a woman or a starving 12-year-old African boy with malaria. Is this what I want for myself in the future, and if not, when is it healthy to stop?

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30 comment(s):

Blogger Harlot said...

OMG I did do that fast!!! I take offense in that! Grr.

Babe, it pains me to say this because you're horrible, but i'm with your BF on this one. You know, the beautiful thing comment. Yeah, yeah. *roll eyes*

I promise i'll follow our diet starting now. :P I know, no crackers. *sniff*

7/13/2006 02:13:00 PM  

Blogger Gun_Wielding_Bitch said...

Cardio alone is not enough. You want Brit Slave For You body; you need to do light weights and sit-up/scrunches. Weights will firm everything up. Light weight (5lbs-10lbs), many reps for you unless you want to look like a bodybuilder then much weight.

Balanced meals based on the food pyramid is best, not these fad diets. We need carbs, we need fat, and we need dairy! It's all about how many calories you take in compared to how many you exert and getting enough vitamins.

The reason you feel hungrier lately is because you are exerting more energy and food is energy. The reason you may have gained weight is because muscle weighs more than fat. Go by measurements, not weight.

And remember, it took time to put the weight on, it takes time to take it off (albeit longer to take off than put on.)

P.S. We are not all meant to be size 2s and that’s ok. I look like Mary-Kate if I get lower than 130 and I’m only 5’6”

7/13/2006 03:16:00 PM  

Blogger Danielle De Barbarac said...

Trollop, you are not the only one who's obsessing, that's for sure. I have starved myself, dieted like crazy, and I still felt like it's not enough. I still don't look like one of those models and would probably never look like one.

Anyway, I don't think you're fat. I've seen your pics here and you look beautiful. :)

7/13/2006 03:21:00 PM  

Anonymous Linka said...

Yeah, I have similar problems with eating. I've been through three eating disorders and still have disordered eating habits. It's really hard to stop once you start.

I think GWB had it right when she said this: "It's all about how many calories you take in compared to how many you exert and getting enough vitamins."

Calories in must be less than calories out and the quality of food you eat matters too. I learned in my Nutri Sci class that it's best to find nutrient dense food (like vegetables and colorful foods like fruits) to meet your caloric needs. While it's true that no fat will be burned until your glycogen (carbs) storage is depleted that doesn't mean you cut carbs out entirely, especially if you don't want to go blind or have scurvy. There's a balance somewhere (although I haven't found it yet).

It's funny how even when you know all this stuff, the psychological pull overcomes your common sense and you continue with your bad eating habits anyways.

7/13/2006 03:33:00 PM  

Blogger Gun_Wielding_Bitch said...

I completely ignored the question! LOL. So, no I don’t fret about my weight. I HATE going out with people and they eat a lettuce leaf and some water and say, OMG I’m sooooo full. I feel like a cow! FUCK THAT!

I try to stay healthy. Do I have a pooch, yes! I’m a girl; I’m supposed to have it. Do I ever have to slip into some sweats for some breathing room, sure. But I am who I am, fat day, skinny day I don’t care. It’s about self-confidence. If you don’t walk around like you feel fat and insecure, you look people in the face and don’t apologize for your weight or how you look, people will think you are sexy as hell!

What is the point of staying young looking and skinny? We need to look beautiful for the coffin? NO! If your mate REALLY loves you, he/she won’t care if you got some wrinkles, gained a few pounds, have a few grays. Your real friends won’t either, and your family can piss off if they got something to say!

Calculate your time. Every time you think or talk about your weight or exercise, add that time up and see how much time is wasted that could be spent with loved ones, catching up on sleep or (my favorite) having sex.

½ hour a day of exercise is all you need to stay in shape. Pop-squats are muscle and cardio all in one. Throw in ½ hour / hour of sex a day, that’s 1 to 1 ½ hours of work out a day!

7/13/2006 03:35:00 PM  

Blogger Isabella said...

GWB, I experienced the same thing as Trollop when I started gym. Actually, I just started gym again like a month ago. I feel guilty every time I eat. I'm always hungry, and I actually gained weight! Wasn't I supposed to loose them instead? But I admit to having more energy and I feel lighter somehow, so I guess that's good. LOL

Trollop, it's good that your back at the gym. I think it's very important that people exercise. Of course you should also eat a balanced diet, otherwise it won't work.

Great topic!

7/13/2006 03:38:00 PM  

Blogger Vixen said...

Trollop first of all I think I might be a bit peeved at you right now. Uh, have you not listened to a single thing I have told you lately? Did you NOT check the post on FABB about the wt/inches thing or working out? Okay, forgiven.

First. GWB is right, add some wts. free wts, machines, pushups, crunches, etc. Also, don't weigh yourself. If you can avoid it, never weigh yourself but if you must just do it every once in awhile. Measure yourself this weekend then do it again next month and I bet good money you'll have lost inches.

Also, TAKE A BREAK. Your body needs rest, it has to rest or it won't benefit from your workouts. Take Sunday off or something.

The appetite. Babe, you are like a spinning maniac; which is great; but your body is begging for nutrients to keep up with your workouts.

NEVER FAST!!!!!!!!!! I am pretending I didn't hear that shit about the not eating for 5 days. Serious, I feel rage just thinking about it.

Breakfast is VERY important. Eat several small meals throughout the day and drink plenty of water.

Now, I am with you on the whole body image thing. I have so many issues about they way I look I can't even begin to start, but I'll give you a taste: "Uni-Thigh" and "Deflated Balloon Boobs".

You are beautiful. I look at you and see a youthful, intelligent, confident, beautiful woman who should be proud that she has the whole package.

Now, I am going to brow beat you if I ever hear you've fasted again, I will fly my ass out to find you. Oh, and I expect an email so I can give you my take on the whole workout thing, if you want it LOL.

Now, off the soap box. Have a good day!

7/13/2006 03:46:00 PM  

Blogger Petra said...

GWB, that's great advice. :)

Trollop, it's great that you're back at the gym. About the media's obsession with being thin, I thik it's too much. I always think of Nicole Richie and Lindsey Lohan when it comes to this, LOL. I mean, they certainly look better and HEALTIER when they have some weight in them, and not the skeleton figures I don't think is attractive at all. Taking care of yourself is one thing, everyone should do that, we only have one body after all. However killing it because we're dying to be thin is another matter.

I think eating a balanced meal, exercising is the way to do it. That should never stop. It should be a way of life. But obsessing about it, letting it runs your life, what you feel and how you enjoy things around you, that's when it becomes a problem.

7/13/2006 03:52:00 PM  

Blogger Sherry said...

First off: I love this blog! You guys are great and always bring a smile to my face :-)

Weight - it should be a 4-letter word. We are all body image conscious whether we admit it or not. The current Hollywood body image however, is not at all appealing and sends the wrong message to teenage girls. Women should have curves, not sharp protruding angles (clavicles). It's like they've all become part of some insane Bobble-Head Doll League (complete w/loss of tits and ass).

There is inherent beauty in every woman regardless of size, shape, or color.

Keep the peace within!

7/13/2006 03:53:00 PM  

Blogger Petra said...

Okay, I can't spell. I mean to say "healthier". Jesus, I even put it in all caps.

7/13/2006 04:00:00 PM  

Blogger Jordis said...

Trollop, babe, you look beautiful. I think everyone has given good advices. I just want to add, spinning rocks!

7/13/2006 04:12:00 PM  

Blogger Hamish and Leesha said...

I think society today is too obsessed with how people look. It doesn't matter to me what a person looks like - as long as YOU feel healthy and comfortable in yourself, who cares what people think?
I can't talk though, becuase at the moment I feel like a beached whale....
Personally, I would rather see a model/movie star/anyone really with boobs, a bum and a belly becuase it shows they eat, buts that just my opinion.

~Leesha~

7/13/2006 05:48:00 PM  

Blogger Hamish and Leesha said...

I just read over what I wrote and I was typing in Leesha Speak so I hope it makes sense...

7/13/2006 05:53:00 PM  

Blogger HOTMAMA said...

Well, I was planning on lurking everywhere tday but dangit, you brought me out with this grr!

Since I have a couple years on many of you......lol..no matter how we look in reality, the mirror never seems to show us what we want to see. When I look at pics from my early 30s, I was THIN, but worked out religiously bec that's not what I saw. Now with an additional 20lbs, the mirror says, "you could be in better shape, but it's not a big deal". I almost think its an age thing, and as another astute blogger here said, it has so much more to do with attitude!

So, if I know I'm eating healthy (I'm not really) and working out regularly (not doing that either) then I'm OK lol.

I've been where you are Trollop, and I think our mirrors will never show us "perfection". Instead we should remember we are doing what's "healthy" and good for our bodies.

On that note, I'll add that nice boobs go a long towards balancing everything out! lol. Don't forget to count your blessings :P

7/13/2006 06:32:00 PM  

Blogger HOTMAMA said...

Oh so to answer the question, "will this obsession ever end?" I believe it levels out once we get settled and feel secure about our future, our life and our place in it. For a lot of women anyway.

But you have to admit, its fun to whine about our imperfections.... just a little??

7/13/2006 06:40:00 PM  

Blogger Dakota Cassidy said...

you know, at the ripe old age of ahem...almost forty, I finally decided to enjoy my life. I obsessed over my weight forevah when I competed in BQ pageants.

Carrot sticks and ex-lax get old, ya know? LOL

Now, I just eat a little of what I really love and let it go. I walk, do pilates and don't get on the scale a lot. LMAO

I think it's just a matter of staying healthy more than anything else. I'm not out to have abs of steel anymore. I stay within my healthy weight range and enjoy from time-to-time. I like me. I'm good with almost forty :)

Dakota :)

7/13/2006 07:21:00 PM  

Blogger Lollie Rose said...

It's good to whine about your weight once in a while, that's normal, but to obsess about it, definitely not.

I run every morning and always make sure I eat right. I might not look as gorgeous as, say Britney Spears pre-baby but I'm healthy and my husband said I look good. Heh.

I think it's important that you feel good about your body first. You can be as skinny as you want but if you have a poor image of yourself, that's definitely not healthy. Sometimes we are overcome by the dictates of society.

7/13/2006 07:47:00 PM  

Blogger Aggie said...

Who was it - Fonzie? or someone from Happy Days who used to look in the bathroom mirror and decide he was perfect as is?
I say practice that for a week or two and see how your 'mental' attitude changes. Someone once told me (very wisely) that it is the battle in the headspace that women have to win ... not the body. Do what you can to stay reasonably fit and healthy but the rest is an attitude. Learn to love your good qualities and work on your character flaws more than body flaws and people will soon love you 'as is'
It sooo takes the pressure off striving to look like someone we just can't be.

7/13/2006 07:56:00 PM  

Blogger Serendipity said...

First of all...you look fabulous.

Second, you're never going to get over that obsession. When I had 22 inch waistline and a figure of 32-22-35 measurements, I thought I was too thin. I finally field up some later on, I think I was too fat. Now that I am really fat, I still think I am way too fat!

And if you ever get over the body obsession, you'll probably be the first one, and I want in on your secret!

Well, speaking from a Biochemist's point of view...Never starve your body. I do not mean you should over-eat, but do not starve yourself.

Why? Because despite our progress with computer age, our body is really still on the dark ages when it comes to metabolism. Starve it more than once, and every little thing you eat here's that it will do: OMG, there is famine. We MUST conserve all these fucking nutrients and fats were getting. UP the fat storage, we need it to survive...

Or something like that.

So, that said, when you get huge craving after a work-out, chew on carrots or similar stuff. Why? If you chew long enough your brain will finally tell your fucking stomach that yeah, it's getting something and to shut the hell up.

You're doing great on the work-out. However, it's a proven thing....You eat, and eat and eat, you're going to gain weight.

7/13/2006 09:35:00 PM  

Blogger C Bradshaw said...

I started dieting when I was 9. It took me 20 years before I realized, no matter what I do, I'll never be a size 0. LOL

I'm still not content with the body I have but I finally let go. I mean I watch what I eat but I finally stopped starving myself and actually indulge once in a while. You know why? When I actually started eating more than just carrot sticks and celery, I actually felt better. And then I noticed that all I have to do is go to the gym five times a week and I will still look the same.

Trollop, focus more on the positive side like your workout routine, it's fantastic, you should be proud of it. Just keep it up. Drink a lot of water and eat a balanced meal. You are doing great and tell yourself that. Don't let the weight and body matters pressure you. You are a beautiful young woman and many people will kill to look as half as fabulous as you. :)

7/13/2006 10:50:00 PM  

Blogger MAW said...

Gaa!! Ditto. I've been working out like mad for the past month and my only reward is weight gain. It's endlessly frustrating. My husband reminds me that muscle is heavier than fat, blah, blah, blah. I've since vowed to stop weighing myself entirely. It will only end in tears.

7/13/2006 11:20:00 PM  

Anonymous die hure said...

I am very thin, too thin and I obsess too. I think no one is ever happy and I don't think it ever ends.

7/14/2006 12:35:00 PM  

Blogger Jolie said...

Trollop, you know you're a beautiful smart woman. Losing weight takes time and effort. Also keep in mind being healthy is more important than anything else. Say it with me: my health is more important than my appearance. Take care, babe.

7/14/2006 01:23:00 PM  

Blogger Lorelei said...

It will probably take a month before the results will show, but they will surely appear.

If you're serious about losing weight, certain foods would stop appealing to you, like cakes. But that doesn't mean you have to completely cut out everything unhealthy, that would be torture, LOL. Just learn how to enjoy these foods in small quantities and you'll be fine.

Every time you exercise more than usual, you burn calories and fat. Don't be impatient, remind yourself that the results will slowly show themselves. Remember that there are no shortcuts to losing weight in a healthy and reasonable way.

Also I think it's important to reward yourself once in a while for all your hardwork. Like buy something expensive, LOL.

7/14/2006 01:44:00 PM  

Blogger Lollie Rose said...

But that doesn't mean you have to completely cut out everything unhealthy, that would be torture, LOL.

I agree with that. I don't think I can stop eating chocolates and krispy kremes. So I have them in small amount every time I feel I really need to eat some. I just think of it as pampering myself. :)

7/14/2006 01:58:00 PM  

Blogger Bethany said...

Where do you find the determination to get to the gym that often and to stay for that long? I am so easily talked out of going to the gym and I can't stand it! :)

7/14/2006 03:20:00 PM  

Blogger C. said...

Just reading your workout schedule tired me out! Don't forget that you do need to give your body a break in between these intense workouts to recover!! It's great that you're back at the gym, but give yourself off days too!! Go for a walk, a real bike ride, something you actually enjoy. Keep it fun!!

7/15/2006 11:41:00 PM  

Blogger Vicious Trollop said...

Tks everyone for the encouraging words and the great advice.

I think I will obsess over my body till the day I die; a bleak future awaits me LOL

Bethany,

I love love love the gym :D My problem has never been staying there, it's been getting there and eating less crappy foods after I leave :P

Claudia,

I'm going to start taking Sundays off, though I usually eat a HUGE family lunch, which I myself prepare being the best cook in this side of the atlantic *wink* So I do need my workout that day too *sniff* Still, even god took Sunday off when making the earth, LOL or so I hear :P

7/16/2006 11:26:00 AM  

Blogger Andrew said...

I've known people, both men and women, to get to that happy place where they don't mind what they eat...but I think they start out that way. The rest of us seem doomed to being self conscious. At least it puts us in good company!

7/16/2006 06:07:00 PM  

Blogger BHB said...

Aggy said it best. Better than I can anyway. Stay healthy, worry about your outer shell less and your inner self more.
Oh, and this comes from a chick who recently stepped from being classed as "obese" to just "overweight" - that's as far as medical recommendations are concerned.

7/16/2006 08:56:00 PM