Fat and Sassy

my views on being larger than life.

Quick hit: teenager suicides after fat shaming February 20, 2010


from http://m.news.com.au/MostPopularNews/pg/0/fi465542.htm;jsessionid=D75FEACBC2EB3860E319D2DFF0DAC22D

what is it going to take for people to think that fat shaming is a big deal?   (Warning may be triggering, espically for those that were bullied)

 

 

TEENAGE waitress committed suicide after relentless bullying by her co-workers, court is told. Brodie Panlock, 19, was spat on, called fat and ugly and, on one occasion, had fish oil poured all over her hair and clothes. One tormentor even told her to take rat poison. Ms Panlock, who worked at Cafe Vamp in Melbourne, jumped to her death in September 2006.

Former Vamp employees Nicholas Smallwood, Rhys MacAlpine and Gabriel Toomey have all pleaded guilty in Melbourne Magistrates’ Court to failing to take reasonable care for the health and safety of persons. The cafe’s owner, Marc Luis Da Cruz, and his company MAP Foundation have pleaded guilty to two charges, including failing to provide and maintain a safe working environment. The court was crowded with Ms Panlock’s friends and family as they heard distressing details of her ordeal.

 Prosecutor Gary Livermore told a pre-sentence hearing that witnesses had seen several of the accused pour fish oil into Ms Panlock’s kitbag and then pour it over her, reducing her to tears. They had also called her fat and ugly and spat on her. Magistrate Peter Lauritsen was told that Ms Panlock had tried to commit suicide in May 2006 by taking rat poison after being rejected by Smallwood, with whom she’d had an intimate relationship. Mr Livermore said that after that incident rat poison was put in her bag, and MacAlpine had told her to go and take it.

 At a coroner’s hearing in 2008, Meghan Chester, a former barista at Cafe Vamp, said Ms Panlock had no confidence in her beauty or worth. “I have worked in the hospitality industry for 10 years, but I have never seen anything like what those … males did to Brodie,” Ms Chester said. In the statement read to the court, Ms Chester said that the accused had taken bullying “to another level”. Ms Panlock’s father told the court that he was devastated that he was not able to protect her. “As a father, one of my main duties to my family was to protect my wife and children – I feel very upset I couldn’t protect Brodie from what she went through,” he said. Her mother said that she had been on medication since her death and found it difficult to sleep. “Brodie was such a big part of my life,” she said.

 Da Cruz told the court that his family was shattered by Ms Panlock’s death and he had put his restaurant up for sale and was intending to move to Queensland. The pre-sentence hearing is continues.

Is THIS enough?   She killed herself because you told her to because she’s too fat….Happy now trolls?  Is the only good fatty a dead fatty?   Bet your ass if it had been because she was gay,…. or because she was black or because she was disabled…. or because she was a woman it would have been different.   It would have made worldwide news, and people would have called it MURDER or manslaughter not “failure to take reasonable care for the health and safety of persons”   oh, but wait you want to say being fat is a choice?  well so is being muslim….or chirstian…or jewish…..so jihad right?   /headdesk

And the worst part?  she was 19…at WORK.   ITs supposed to get EASIER after high school…we are all adults right?  apparently not….and apparnetly your boss will look on and giggle too, or they wouldn’t be charged (and found guilty) as well.   THIS is the face of anti-fat bias people.   Look at it……then DO something about it.

RIP Brodie Panlock….i hope you can find peace.

Advertisements
 

Being teased for being a fat child makes you a sad panda – DUH February 19, 2010


doing my daily mail surfing (i have had the same yahoo address for 15 years) I saw the following headline:   Childhood Obesity Takes Psychological Toll, Too (from http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20100215/sc_livescience/childhoodobesitytakespsychologicaltolltoo).   DUH!  Like being fat, especially growing up, is fan-fucking-tastic.   Adults may catcall a fat chick as she walks down the street…bullies will make a fat kid eat mud…and oink like a pig…literally.  “Overweight kids are more likely to have depression and low self-esteem, to be teased or bullied, and to bully other children,” said Catherine Davis, associate professor of pediatrics at the Medical College of Georgia. “These can be serious problems for these children.”  It’s hard NOT to have low self-esteem and suffer depression when EVERYONE when you are a fat kid is telling you that you aren’t good enough.   You aren’t thin enough for your parents, your doctor, your family.   If you have friends, they either walk all over you, or only hang out with you when nobody is watching (i actually had someone tell me that in middle school….i wasnt cool enough to be seen with but they sure would play my Nintendo).

“Overweight and obesity are terribly stigmatizing conditions, regardless of age,” said Sara Gable of the University of Missouri, Columbia. “Living as a member of a stigmatized group is stressful and can produce feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness.”  FOr a child, it means never learning vital social skills because they don’t get the practice they would if NOT part of a stigmatized group.   ITs hard to jockey for social standing when you are the last one picked, and automatically shunned because of your body.  “A lot of who we are is based on how others interact with us,” said Eric Storch of the Departments of Pediatrics and Psychiatry at the University of South Florida. “With kids who are overweight they internalize others’ feedback, ‘You’re fat, you’re no good, no one wants to go out with you.’ That contributes to anxiety and depression.”  And what exactly do you do about a fat child?  Starve them?  Put them on a diet?   IF being fat really IS 80% genetic, we are setting up a whole group of children to hate themselves, their body and never really trust their peers.   I for one, ALWAYS know when someone is watching me.   It’s not paranoia, but self defence…if you see and hear the kids whispering to each other about you BEFORE they tease you out loud, you can avoid that horrid “what do I do” feeling. You can arm yourself with a comeback, or get ready to read and ignore them.   We are setting up an entire swatch of people, men and women both, to be complacent in abusive relationships….its not such a far step from “im never thin (read that as good) enough”  to “its my fault, i deserved to be hit, no one else will love me anyway”   I would really like to see the statistics on weight/BMI and spousal abuse.  (if they even exist)  

Researchers are finding that overweight kids are stigmatized in the very arenas they need to “feel better”  and “lose weight”…exersize.   What former fat kid doesnt remeber the horror of gym class….or sports……or even playing in the park:

“He estimates rates of depression are as high as 20 percent in kids who are overweight.

 “It’s not simply being overweight that leads to depression,” Storch said in a telephone interview. “It’s being overweight and getting a bunch of crap about it from peers that leads to anxiety or depression.”

While one paradigm suggests weight leads to teasing, which then leads to psychological issues, another reverses those arrows to suggest depressed kids are less likely to exercise and more likely to gain weight.

In fact, Storch and his colleagues studied 100 overweight children and those at risk for being overweight, ages 8 to 18, to find out the effects of bullying. About a quarter of the children reported significant problems with bullies during the prior two weeks. The study, published in a 2007 issue of the Journal of Pediatric Psychology, revealed bullying often caused kids to avoid situations where they had been picked on, such as gym class and sports fields.
Storch’s team also found bullied kids were more likely to be depressed, lonely and anxious.

“When you think about it, it makes intuitive sense, when you consider the hallmark signs of depression – sadness, fatigue, lack of interest in things you used to like,” Storch said in a statement about the study. “When kids are having a tough time with peers, and struggling with depression, then this can translate to reduced rates of physical activity.”

And researchers are seeing that this anti-obesity stigmatization starts early.   IN a national study involving 8000 kids, following kids from kindergarten through 3rd grade.   “by third grade overweight kids reported less favorable peer relations and feeling unpopular.”  Overweight girls acted out more, did worse in school.   (as reported by teachers) Kids who were fat as young as KINDERGARTEN  “were more likely to be sad, lonely and to worry than kindergarteners without extra poundage, according to reports by their teachers and the kids themselves. As overweight kids entered higher grades, these feelings just got worse.”    As a parent, you know when your kid is overweight but this “anti obesity”  message is getting out of control (even if your kids are small and underweight for their age group)….your doctor tells them…tv tells them…and books…and the health teacher….posters all over elementary schools tell kids to never have soda, only drink diet (and then sells them chips out of a vending machiene), my SIX year old told me she wanted to try and be less hungry.  Our kids are humans too…they LIVE in our culture, and they hear more than we give them credit for…childhood isnt rainbows and lemon drops…its fitting in, and being popular (or learning how to deal with NOT  being popular), dealing with your peers and learning the “norms” of society.   If a round body type is not “normal”,  if being fat is labeled “dangerous”  and “a disease” (and im not talking about nutrition here, i actually eat really well and so do my kids, i am talking about physiological body types)  “The fact that overweight boys and girls reported more loneliness and worrying suggests that, as early as first grade, they may have an understanding of the stereotypes that accompany living with the stigma, the researchers say.” 

“Gable said research on other stigmatized groups, such as racial minorities, shows these negative feelings can interfere with academic performance and other aspects of a person’s life, and “there is good reason to think” these findings would apply to children struggling with weight problems, Gable told LiveScience.” OH but we choose to be fat….a five year old CHOOSES to be teased…too have less friends, and do worse in school.(remember obesity is showing up as young as 3 months now according to research….lets tell the infants to lay off the twinkies fatty) yea fucking right.   I don’t understand when these kid are supposedly getting fat….and we know that if a kid is fat, they will be a fat adult (for the most part)  could it be because its GENETIC?   no I guess we just need to stop eating all together  /headdesk

Their tips include turn off the tv and get involved in sprots….well geuss what….I grew up with hippie parents…which mean NO tv till I was 8 and then black and white tv till middle school.  We didn’t get cable till I was in high school for the love of god.   I NEVER had a tv in my room till college.   I was in a sport every year, sometimes 2 a year.   We lived near a playground and had a big back year to play in.   And by the age of 10 I was over 100 lbs.   Because of the hippie parents, and the chem major dad we didn’t eat out (dad knew EXACTLY how dirty a restaurant could be), so i wasnt eating McD’s and getting fat.   We ate healthy, homemade meals that were not processed.  (hell for a while we baked our own bread) But it was said to me all my life growing up it was my fault I was fat…..and down that road lies eating disorders , depression and a lifetime of hating my body.  But even the headline of this article seems to blame obesity for the depression…instead of placing the blame squarely on society’s stigmatization where it belongs.

 

Welcome to the matrix February 15, 2010


Some important online links for ya today.  enjoy the interwebs matrix roundup for the month of feb.

the FFF is online now!

Well, there is a new blogroll/voltron blog in town.   thats right we ARE the Home of the Nouveau-bese.   check us out at www.fiercefatties.wordpress.com.  Got a great bunch of folks onboard, hitting just about every group we can in the fatospere…..we got the token male….the “skinny” fatty….the eating disorder genius (thats me)…the newbie fatty…..the ethnic fattie…older fattie….younger fatties……college educated and not….. you get the drift….10 fabulous takes on FA and how we cope with being fat and loving it in a skinny world.  In the words of our fearless “leader”  Atchka we “We’re an open-minded, friendly sort of community that welcomes disagreement, dissent, and diet-talk (with ample trigger warnings). We aren’t promoting dieting, but we acknowledge that Fat Acceptance should include people at all stages of the journey, even those who have not yet internalized the failure rate of dieting.”  yea that about sums it up.  

Ask me anything i DARE you.

 And don’t forget about my formspring at http://www.formspring.me/fatandsassy .  Ask me anything I promise I will answer.  some goodies from the last week:

If you could only present one fact about the current War on Obesity to the country, something that you think would make more Americans less assholish toward fat people, what would it be? by atchka

The study done at UCLA showing that diets don’t work in the long term. THIS was the wake up call I had that made me realize I was being crazy, repeating the same behaviors over and over again….dieting over and over again, expecting it to work THIS time. It was this study that started me on my TRUE recovery from bulimia, the ultimate weight loss roller coaster.

This meta study looked at 31 long-term weight loss studies over the course of 5 years. they found at LEAST 2/3 of diets fail, and that was with studies with self reporting (of COURSE we say we lose more than we did) and low follow-up (around 50%…wanna bet the people who lost weight were the ones that reported?) which HAD to have skewed results. In fact “one of the best predictors of weight gain over the four years was having lost weight on a diet at some point during the years before the study started,”. THAT is what i want people to understand. so we are fat….so it may be bad for us….

but DIETS DONT WORK.

so now what do we do? force fatties into concentration camps? (call them boot camps and sell it to us for 5k a week!) KIll us all? Or just scapegoat the worlds problems onto us.

How are you so awesome?

luck and skill. and a large dose of Phish and MST3K…and books…..LOTS of books.

Bored?  love websites?

Check out my stumbleupon page at http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/Erylinn/ .   For those that don’t know what stumbleupon is , i will use their own words:

StumbleUpon helps you discover and share great websites. As you click Stumble!, we deliver high-quality pages matched to your personal preferences. These pages have been explicitly recommended by your friends or one of 8 million+ other websurfers with interests similar to you. Rating these sites you like () automatically shares them with like-minded people – and helps you discover great sites your friends recommend. 

StumbleUpon uses / ratings to form collaborative opinions on website quality. When you stumble, you will only see pages that friends and like-minded stumblers () have recommended. This helps you discover great content you probably wouldn’t find using a search engine.

Searching vs. Stumbling:

Using search engines to locate relevant content typically means hunting through pages of results. Rather than searching for quality web sites, StumbleUpon members are taken directly to web sites matching their personal interests and preferences.

Sounds dry and techincal….its actually the most amazing thing I have ever played with.   I see new stuff there every time I hit stumble…in fact it is what ultimately led me to fa, by stumbling a post on shapely prose (http://kateharding.net/)  I know it requires a toolbar to be installed to stumble but its actually functional (i usually hate toolbars and wont install them.)

 

That’s gotta be a victory February 5, 2010


Heidi over at Hortus Deliciarum  wrote a great post called Intuitive eating vs. “calorie restriction” or dieting .  As i was posting, i realized my reply  had outgrown the “comments” realm and was morphing into its own blog post.   please check her post out as it is obviously thought provoking.

“Sometimes I need to swim back to my safety-log of overeating to make it through a day, because I’m not yet ready to swim all the way to the shore of recovery, but I never, ever calorie restrict. That way lies madness.”   

so very powerful and true.   It amazing….now that I honestly DONT CARE what I  eat…I end up bringing home food from resturants……hell I even order less because I didn’t starve myself all day…like today…at panera bread (it will always be St.Louis Bread Co to me) I USED to order a take 2 with a breadbowl, making myself eat their yummy salads….but yesterday all I craved was veggies,  and today all I wanted was bread and meat….so I had french onion soup in a bread bowl and it was ALL I wanted…..it was PERFECT and I was satisfied until 9p, when I ate with my man when he got off work on our date night.   I am eating LESS when I am not forcing myself to eat “right”  because what I crave is “right” for my body.  

…and I don’t feel like I have to “force” myself to eat in the mornings anymore (I have asthma and use birth control… so I get REALLY sick to my stomach in the morning.)  I always felt like I had to choke down breakfast, and then if I couldn’t I wouldn’t let myself eat till like 2 as “punishment” for not follow the right diet to “amp” my metabolism.     But now that I have given up on that notion and eat when my body says I tend to eat 2 meals with a light snack later….and no starving, no hiding food and scarfing it.   I enjoy it more….hell I cant even eat fast food anymore, it turns my stomach and I don’t crave it (i turned down fries tonight in favor of horseradish cole slaw) ….but boy has my wok enjoyed itself since i got it for christmas! 

Hell this whole happy movement thing too is amazing….my body LOVES me now!  My back needs the yoga daily to feel better….and I feel stronger without feeling so sore I cant walk up a stair.   I don’t shake now when I do downward-facing dog or warrior poses!   And I can hold them for longer!   and I havent given up or gotten bored (gogo ADHD).   It feels like all the baby steps with my relationships with food, exercise and self-esteem are starting to right themselves.

In fact I passed something of a “test” for myself personally.  My first trigger for bulimia…the big one that started it all… was homemade lemon bars…..I made (and then ate) a whole pan…and freaked out. (cue a binge/purge cycle that lasted, oh the rest of my life)  Well, I made some with my kids…and there are still 3 left, and its been 2 days…in fact I think I have to throw them away, because they are stale….WFT!   I let sweets…CAKES for crissake!…go STALE!  I dont care if I am losing weight, or gaining….I DO care that my relationship with food, for the first time since I was 10, is starting to feel normal, and right.   I dont have to count everything to be able to eat it.   I AM trying to eat veggies, not because I HAVE to but because I CRAVE them. 

That’s gotta be a victory.

 

Teen grows, gains weight…..obesity “crisis” raises February 2, 2010


I ran across this article http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100201/ap_on_he_me/us_med_fighting_obesity about a 14-year-old, Paris,  who is in danger of getting obese….shes not even that chunky….just in DANGER of getting fat. “Paris’ pediatrician urged her to take part in an intensive experiment. The goal? To see if a yearlong program of weekly sessions with a nutritionist, exercise trainer and doctor, all preaching major lifestyle changes, could keep the 14-year-old from becoming obese.”  just IN DANGER of….and for this she goes to weekly nutritionist meetings, exercise trainers and doctors…ALL of who are telling her shes fat.  “It’s the kind of intensive help that the influential U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said last month can work for teens.”   Keep in mind this is a girl who developed early and is on the swim team….ALREADY an athlete with swimmers shoulders, so it’s not like she isn’t active, perhaps (despite her curves, even fit?) And she is 14 years old. FOURTEEN. YEARS. OLD.  aka a still growing teenager. 

“She developed early and classmates made fun of her blossoming bust and swimmers’ shoulders.

“They started calling me fat,” Paris says softly. It made her very self-conscious.

So she wears two suits to swim. They are a drag on her swimming times, but help camouflage her curves”

That is part of the problem with judging “the obesity epidemic” on bmi and averages…it sounds as if this girl is athletic and an early develpoer…and THAT makers her in danger of being obese?  Her doctor suggested she join the study because her sisters went to college and came back obese….but does that mean that the athletic paris would as well?  the article blames the biggest loser for making us thing that “overweight” isn’t bad for you. (wtf?) “”Reality shows like ‘The Biggest Loser’ definitely have not helped,” she said. They’ve skewed the public’s perception of what overweight looks like, featuring people who are dangerously obese” /headdesk.

The article follows the first (honeymoon) months of the family diet (lifestyle change /rolleyes) with relish….they all lose weight, even the growing 14-year-old (her whole family has to sign up with her) they all go vegetarian.  from April to Oct Paris loses 8 lb. (according to her bmi chart she started out 20 lb overweight) She gushes about how she looks ect, ect, the stuff everyone does when they are losing weight.   but after Christmas, it falls apart.  and of course, they blame her, not homeostasis, or hunger, or the fact THAT SHES A GROWING TEEN. 

Chicago’s 2008-09 winter is harsh, snowy and cold. Paris feels little motivation to venture outside to exercise. It’s dark when she gets home from school and homework keeps her busy until bedtime.

Her friends alternate between encouragement and saying she’s wasting her time. Her dad says Paris “is fine as long as she’s at home. She pretty much sticks to the diet. When she’s with friends, they go out to burger places. She struggles with that a bit.”

At school lunch, friends reach over and grab bites of her veggie sandwiches, and Paris thinks it’s unfair that their food is off-limits. Sometimes she takes a few bites, anyway.

By April 2009, it’s clear Paris will miss her birthday goal. In fact, she’s put on about 5 pounds. Wearing a tight magenta tank top accentuating her tummy bulge, she says, “I just want my stomach a little flatter.”

i HATE that.  THEY BLAME HER.   for gaining 5 lbs.  (most women don’t finish putting on height until their late (ie 18ish) teens.  not to mention that early developers add 5-10 lb of boob which, against popular belief, is NOT factored into bmi stats or “overweight” range measurements) her dad blames her.  Her friends “other” her, telling her she’s fail or commiserating in her dieting.  And she see the failure…and keeps failing…after 2 years, she has gained 12 lbs…which sounds perfectly normal to me considering she went form 14-16 but the article and her doctor sem to disagree.   Even the adults in her family only lost 5lbs (her family stuck to the vegetarian diet), or non at all over 2 years.   the grand total for 12 lbs gain for a growing teen over 2 years (and a weight loss of 5lbs in the mom)?  “A research grant paid for the Woodses to participate; otherwise the counseling and checkup sessions likely would have cost well over $4,000.”  4k to doctors for nothing….no real results, but the article trumps it up like it’s an improvement… all it shows to me is the fulitlity of trying to “diet”  I am pretty sure that paris will stay fairly healthy…..shes a swimmer and a lifeguard, walks to school and work, and eats a fairly healthy diet for a teen (her family still eats vegetarian at home, she does eat meat with friends.)   In fact i worry that all the study did was make her feel like a failure and set her up for future diet failures.

 

a voice in recovery January 28, 2010


As you probably know by now, i am a recovering bulimic, and am always looking for ways to support others in the recovery process, as well as looking for advice and insight on my own recovery.  I follow weightless (http://blogs.psychcentral.com/weightless/2010/01/qa-on-eating-disorder-recovery-with-kendra-a-voice-in-recovery-part-2/) which features thoughtful interviews with people in the recovery process.    

WARNING MAY BE TRIGGERING

A problem that eating disorders have in the media is their portrayal.   It, like dieting, is often seen as a “willpower”  issue, when it’s so much more than that (much like dieting)   “I do worry more about trash media articles, because often the articles sound cliché, and make it sound like eating disorders are a willpower issue and not a complicated biological, chemical, cultural, environmental disorder.”   Also, everyone sees the wasting waif that is the face of anorexia….but put me in a line up and you wouldn’t be able to go “HER…thats the bulimic”   That is one of the MANY pitfalls of judging a person by their weight.   Tell me to “lose weight fatty”  and not so long ago it would throw me into a crying tailspin where I would purge everything I ate for 3 months.   Hell I have even had relatives tell me to just be bulimic for 3 months so you lose 30 lbs so you can get out there and date after my husband left me (thanks insensitive bitch!)   If I am skinny and its after 1994, it’s NOT because of a successful diet….its because I throw up.  ITs when I get “fat” again that I am healthy, not living in a hell with my worth being defined as a number at the convergence of calories in, exercise, willpower, and hatred.. 

This particular article is with Kendra, the head of A voice of Recovery on facebook (http://www.facebook.com/AVoiceinRecovery) and she had some awesome things to say about ed, recovery and advocacy.  First, she lashes out at the diet industry, which is the root of poor body image in oh so many women. ” I worry that because dieting is running rampant in this country by a multi-billion dollar industry, that parents will see dieting as a girl’s “right of passage.” I worry people will start dieting and end up with eating disorders. I believe the diet industry is a very damaging, powerful industry.”  that is why diet ads, ESPICALLY to those in recovery can be so toxic….it’s really hard to ignore all the “lose weight fatty or no one will love you” messages in the media…or worse yet “lose weight fatty or your gonna DIIIEEEEEEEE” (i think i want a t-shirt with that on it, as a caption for a picture of receipts for diet food) that is the new special hell in the media for ed folks.   Because EVERY diet becomes restriction, and for those with and ed, this can mean relapse.

She also talks about the lack of information for those RECOVERED….you hear all these stories about the bravery of women going into ED treatment, but you don’t see the reality out the other side…..IT can feel hopelessly long, and hard, and damn near impossible.   The media, ESPICALLY for bulimia, doesn’t really talk about the long term effects….for me, my ED is becoming VERY real as my teeth fall out one by one….before the of 40.   I also have digestion issues and acid reflux disease (from all my purging, my tummy ph is all messed up) and a horrid gag reflex.   She too talks on her issues (which the media never covers for bulimics, or if they do it’s an aside, cause we aren’t SKINNY so its ok) 

“I do have a LOT of dental issues. I was a kid who never had cavities, always had white teeth, and I now struggle with cavities, gum damage, etc. I also have a lot of digestive problems. Since I abused laxatives, I have a hard time processing foods. I also restricted and threw up so much food that I have acid reflux, and issues with eating certain types of foods.” 

They don’t tell you that you can never enjoy orange juice (bottled sunshine) again without pain.  Or red sauce (at least for me). 

Kendra also talks on how people can help loved ones with an ed.   Like with alcoholism, its really hard to help someone stop when they don’t WANT to stop.   You have to have that Aha! moment.  It’s important to remember, folks may NOT want help.  “Also – this disorder lies:  Often while you think a loved one may need help, the person struggling will not and sometimes cannot see this. Try not to lash out with frustration, and understand that it is a very complicated disorder, and it is normal for the person struggling to not want help, be unwilling to stop behaviors and may get very angry at any suggestion of help.”

It’s people like her that give me the courage to take it one day at a time, step by step into recovery.  Sometimes all you can say is “I will try again tomorrow”

 

Elle admits to exersize bulimia January 20, 2010


If I havent mentioned it yet, I LOVE stumble upon, an add-on for web browsers (get it www.stumpleupon.com).   It lets you pick your genres you like to look at (for me its humor, anthropology, video games, music, crafts, linguistics, history ect ect)  and then plugs you into a cloud using a thumbs up/thumbs down system like Pandora or digg.   Anyway it always gives me interesting fa articles from outside the fatosphere and this is no exception.  This time i stumbled into an article about exercise bulimia from Elle Magazine. 

As usual, these may be triggering, please read with care (and take in mind it IS coming from the Evil-Coprorations-Pushing-diets-On-us magazines aka one of THEM)

http://www.elle.com/Beauty/Health-Fitness/Exercise-Bulimia-How-Much-is-Too-Much

  I think its great that the author (a reality tv  winner from a show called stylista…the prize was an internship at elle)  was open about the whole thing, and how she realized she needed help.  The first article is her journey toward admitting she has a problem.  Her addiction started through a sport, having to cut 2-3 lbs to make the rowing team.   The old calorie in = caolrie out became the rule for her, the obession…she realized she had a problem when She was taping the show.   Her inability to exercise (their gym membership fell through, they didn’t get the contestants a treadmill, they couldn’t run because of the cameras..ect,ect.)  leads to a quiet breakdown, and she knew she needed help.  

  I think everyone has a triggerpoint….I remember being in middle school drinking slimfast and hiding in the library because I was embarassed…..runnning till I fell over to REM.   And, like the author of the Elle article, I hid my exercise, doing it late at night when no one would know.   Taking the bus to the pool to swim for 7 hours a day, swimming 50 laps or more without stopping.   Now, my exercise bulimia fell to pieces when I started purging, (it was oh so much less time consuming for one), but i can certainly understand where the author is coming from…and to a certain extent it’s what the media at large feeds us.  I find it problematic that in the same magazine as this article there is also THIS article http://www.elle.com/Beauty/Health-Fitness/ELLE-Make-Better-DVD-With-Brooklyn-Decker, but i suppose it IS a step in the right direction.

http://www.elle.com/Beauty/Health-Fitness/21-Day-Make-Better-Exercise-Diary

the second is the beginning of her recovery journey.  I sort of disagree with the slightly oversimplified idea that she could get “better” from an eating disorder in 21 days, but hey, it’s a start.  It’s about time that folks start seeing the compulsive exercise as pushed by the biggest loser and other weight loss shows.    It’s NOT ok to run 8 miles a day because you ate a muffin.   You are NOT supposed to exercise through injuries.    Holidays.   Birthdays.  The road to recovery is a long process full of pit falls.   The author speaks about gaining 3-4 lbs over the course of 21 days…but what if your body equilibrium is naturally 50 lbs heavier than that?   What happens when you STOP going 2-3 daily 6 days a week?   And where is the line?  Whats the difference between fasting because you know you are going to a buffet….or starving yourself so you can binge?  I think the line is, like all  addictions, does it affect your life?  are you ashamed of it?  do you obsess  about it?  do you do it in secret?

Anyway some food for thought.