_ So, my blog is now a year old! Happy Birthday, blog!
To mark the occasion, I think I’m going to do twelve cartwheels, one for each month, and maybe seventy-one push-ups, one for each article I’ve written.
I hope you’re picking up on the theme – exercise is not a punishment. It is not something you can do to neutralise bad karma, and its inclusion in – or exclusion from – your life does not reflect on you as a person. It is something to be engaged with in whatever way you like – strength training is my thing, hence my choices. I did not choose a twelve kilometre run, or seventy holes of golf, or a one hour bike ride.
To move freely (by which I simply mean – on your terms, whether structured or no, impulsively or whimsically, with labour or attention or absentmindedness) is to celebrate life.
Also, I bought a new pair of shoes! Huzzah!
_ And so, in the theme of things that I like, observations I have made, and opinions I have formed, here is a list of things I have noticed over the last year and a half, since I stopped dieting:
(By dieting, I don’t mean any particular system – not Atkins, Weight Watchers or Despair Is The New Thin, or even the diet that pretends it is no diet: Lifestyle Changes – the art of simply eating less forever more. I was vegetarian for ten years plus, but I use the term dieting in a general sense, to relate to the culture of restriction, of deprivation, which seems to me to be somehow Catholic, but I may be digressing – the idea that one should always make ‘good’ choices, or try to ‘eat less’, this is the way in which I use the term ‘dieting’. Now, when in doubt, I eat more! Anyway, since giving up on that frame of mind, and abandoning those self-harming and flagellating practices that I used to indulge in, here are some things I have noticed, from my own personal experience of life and being a fitness professional...)
Hunger is now associated with anticipation, not desperation.
My testosterone levels are up to normal.
Insulin sensitivity and diabetes balancing (I hesitate to use the term ‘control’) are better than ever.
All this is to say – improved hormone function.
Increased feeling of independence and autonomy.
Increased feeling for subtle rebelliousness and vibrant creativity.
Better energy throughout the day and week.
No perpetual hunger.
Strength training actually started working (I got strong).
Significant muscle gain (had to eat a helluva lot for that one).
Fat gain (marginal, but true).
Improved self-image and sense of self.
I do not get sick half as often.
No more hay fever (yes – even though I consume dairy in unrestricted amounts).
I am no longer allergic to cats.
So – these points may not strike you quite as profoundly as they strike me. But anyway. Dieting is supposed to be good for me, is it? Dieting serves whose agenda, really? Mine?
Now ask me if I’m interested in trying to shed five kilograms at the expense of my health and vitality? Ask me if I want to give up eating without guilt, prejudice or restriction?
Ask me if I think giving up on dieting is taking the easy way out, or if dieting itself is the easy way out?
Because when you do what you’re told, and hope for the best, because you’re being nice and obedient, and giving up your power of choice...?
Someone else is going to truly know what you need, better than you do? And they can sell it to you, pretending like you’ll never get sick and won’t one day have medical bills to pay? Because thin people are never sick? Fit people never need medicine?
Anyway. It’s been a blast! Thank you so much for reading! Squee!