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Listen to advice, but don't take any shit!

Everybody THINKS they know what you need to do to lose weight or improve fitness. That can include your best friend, your significant other, the guy next to you at the gym, or the co-worker who wants you to go on the cabbage soup diet with her. It may even include your humble blogger. Just remember, this is your body and your journey. In the end you have to live or die with what you do to it. Also, as fat people in our society, the world thinks they are entitled to have an opinion about our bodies. Sometimes a hearty fuck-you is in order, whether you are in a position to deliver it or not.

Now let's just state for the record, that Hubby is a saint. He's even named after one. In the course of our 24 or so years together, he has put up with A LOT of crazy, including the absolute worst of the Torchwood stuff, and more importantly my food/fat/exercise/body-image/denial/self-loathing roller-coaster. He's promised to love me no matter how fat I get. He's agreed NOT to go out to dinner when he wanted to because I could only allow myself one "splurge" meal a week. He's put up with diets and anti-diets and exercise obsessions and sloth. He's presumably turned a blind eye to some pretty fucked up eating behavior on both sides of the spectrum. He's told me I was beautiful when I hated every cell in my body and when I weighed 191 pounds. So yeah, he MOSTLY gets a pass.


New bike by karaokegal
New bike, a photo by karaokegal on Flickr.

This is my bike! It's a Public Bike, which is a "city bike" style. As you can see it's a "girls' bike. I love this bike. I'm not going to give you the crap about loving to ride it because I will never BS you enough to say I "love" any exercise. Exercise is exercise the way work is work. I do it because I have to. BUT to the extent that I can love riding a bicycle, I love riding THIS bicycle. I don't have to get a leg over it, BECAUSE it's a girl's bike. I also love that it has a only 7 gears and one of them is a granny gear. I can slog up hills at my own pace.

The gear box is covered and there's no chance of clothing getting chewed up in the derailleur.

Hubby got me my Public Bike, or at least convinced me that it was worth my getting one. (I was kind of convinced by riding a Boris Bike in London. Same general model.) As a result of this, he takes a certain amount of credit for the current weight lost/fitness success. I do ride the bike to work every day, even when I also go to the gym. On alternate days I try to ride at least 10 miles and I've gotten up to the 30 on a weekend ride with at least a A Half Century as a possible goal.

Hubby IS a bike guy. He was a bike messenger, both in NY and San Francisco in the 70's and 80's. Although he was a motorcycle guy for many years, he has reverted to bicycle guy, following the two broken legs from motorcycle accidents. He also became a "Fixie Guy!"

My Public Bike was hubby's 3rd or 4th attempt to convert me to the way of the bike and the previous ones were failures, because even when I rode the bike I hated it with every fiber of my being and hated him for putting me on it. They were NOT girl bikes and I HATE having to get my leg over a fucking bar to get on my bike and having gears that ground up my pants and the whole "massive gear" changing apparatus. HATE HATE HATE. And you know what I really like doing on my bike, sometimes? COASTING. After slogging up a hill, I can coast down, grabbing my brakes for dear life like I'm heading down Mount Haleakala.

Somewhere along the line, Hubby got a bug up his butt that I should get a fixie because I would get fitter faster because you can't coast on a fixie. You know what else? They don't make fixies in "girl" style.

I DON'T WANT A FIXIE! I tried to explain this reasonably and he was not hearing me, or he was pretending to and still pushing, not realing he was on VERY THIN ICE and this is where he thought he was giving advice and he really wanted me take his shit. Basically his dream is to remake me in his biker image. TRYING to be reasonable, I agreed to try one, after reiterating both the girl-bike and the coasting issues again.

The place he had in mind did not have a fixie in a size that my short-people self could adequately ride. They said they'd have one next week, I said fine we'll come back then, and my wonderful, loving STUPID SON OF A BITCH HUSBAND still wouldn't shut up and said well maybe I'll go online and get you a "Mixed frame fixie," and that's when I had to use my "K-gal getting pissed" voice and tell him to BACK OFF and not to do any such thing.

It blew over pretty quickly and I hope he got the message.

This is a microcosm of what we all face every day in this process. Because anyone who believes they have THE ANSWER not only wants to share it, but wants to make sure you follow the same path.

Nod politely. After that, get as tough or bitchy or strident as the relationship/social setting allows. And if necessary, take it to your blog and offer up the very hearty fuck you that is so richly deserved.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 27th, 2014 07:07 pm (UTC)
Shit, I wish I weighed only 191!
I know exactly how you feel about the girl bike thing! i can't get my leg up high enough to get over a guy bike. (Not that I've ever seen anyone wear a skirt on a bike except in world war one movies.)
Jan. 27th, 2014 08:05 pm (UTC)
We all have to start our journey where we are. 191 was obscenely high for me, but the fact is I'm fully capable of binging my way much higher.

Yeah, you don't have to be a Gibson Girl or a WW2 movie heroine to need a girl's bike. (I have ridden mine in a skirt however.)
Jan. 27th, 2014 07:19 pm (UTC)
In the end, you gotta do what works for you. If having a different style of bike makes you want to stop riding, then fuck that, stick with the girlie bike!
Jan. 27th, 2014 08:06 pm (UTC)
I love my girlie bike. I'm a big girl's blouse and proud of it. In fact, there will be a post about re-claiming our femininity, but I had to deal with this issue first, because it pissed me off so much.
Jan. 27th, 2014 09:23 pm (UTC)
OMG. I was out to dinner with friends and one of them (who I knew casually) kept raving about her stationary bike and how the pounds would just melt off and yadda yadda yadda. I don't want to spend cash for something that might just sit there unused and I'm not really a bike person, prefer dancing and walking/hiking (although I've been hibernating this winter). And it was annoying the fuck out of me but I realized all I could do was say, "That sounds interesting," and let it go. Now I'm keeping my mouth SHUT about trying to lose weight.
Jan. 27th, 2014 09:29 pm (UTC)
We ALL have closets and basements full of exercise equipment bought with the best intentions. I usually tell people that a Nordic Trak or a Stationary Bike WILL become a very expensive coat-rack.
Jan. 27th, 2014 11:06 pm (UTC)
I can't even RIDE a bike (well, I can fall off one pretty well). My sympathies - I'm with you, exercise by definition is not fun, and anything that makes it nicer for *you* is of the good.
Jan. 27th, 2014 11:37 pm (UTC)
The Public Bike made SUCH a different. I don't have to hunch over the bars, I don't have to deal with toe-clips. Just a million little things. I still do throw my chain sometime, but it's pretty easy to get it back into place when it does happen.

But yeah, as Oscar Wilde said---"Work is the curse of the drinking class." My corollary about exercise is fairly obvious. If I could continue to sit on the couch and eat chips and manage to be svelte and gazelle-like, this would be a very different blog right about now.
Jan. 29th, 2014 07:35 am (UTC)
I have had approximately ninety billion people 'congratulate' me on my weight loss and I think I've managed to get the disinterested polite avoidance down, but man, the number of times I've just wanted to tell people to shut the fuck up is legion. (I had hoped after the break it would stop, I didn't actually lose any weight, although I may have toned up some - but did it stop? No, no it didn't.)

My older brother also tried to police what I was eating and was all, "I'll keep the chocolate in my room so you won't be tempted." Uhm, fuck you?

ETA: Just wanted to point out that on my LJ is the ONLY place I've ever talked about wanting to lose weight. I didn't say a damn thing at work. People just started commenting on it in August and haven't stopped since.

Edited at 2014-01-29 07:37 am (UTC)
Jan. 29th, 2014 05:20 pm (UTC)
I had to face the office Holiday Brunch this week and see a bunch of people who hadn't seen me in a year. They were all "How did you do it?" and rather than give them the whole spiel, I'd just look at them and say, "What are you willing to give up? What are you willing to do?" That shut most of them up like clams.

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )



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