Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Our endless quest for perfection

I see a lot of people, especially women, online and in real life, who are constantly beating themselves up about their weight or their looks or both. This distresses me because so much of it is completely unnecessary. Plus, I don't think it helps and I've always suspected it actually makes things worse.

One of the nuggets I read during Fat Talk Free Week was that women who talk negatively about their bodies are less likely to engage in healthy behaviors. So it seems that I was right in my suspicion. Beating ourselves up and striving for an unattainable state of perfection isn't "holding ourselves to high standards" and it actually makes it harder to improve!

I think everyone has to be honest with themselves about how much they are willing to do to manage their weight. How much they are willing to exercise. How much they are willing to deprive themselves of treats. How much they are willing to follow the rules. How much they are willing to put up with hunger. Some people are willing to do quite a lot and some people aren't willing to do much at all.

Once you figure out what you are willing to do, then comes the hard part: you have to accept the weight this leaves you at.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Cold, wet, suicidal deer and (possible) concussion but I finished

It's been two and a half weeks since I attempted by first 200km brevet and I haven't had the energy to write about it until now. A brevet, for those who don't know, is an organized, but self-supported bike ride. Unlike Century Rides and even most Double Century Rides, there are no aide stations. You prove you did the ride by collecting information, cash register receipts and stamps along the way.

It's a bit more social that doing the same route by yourself but it can be no different than setting out yourself if you haven't got people who promise to stay with you and you can't find anyone riding at your pace.

I signed up for the ride with a friend and I thought we were going to ride together. It turned out we had very different ideas of what that meant and next time I will be clearer about my expectations because after the first 5 miles or so, I spent most of the ride by myself. At first I tried to keep up but the thing is, I really had no business being on that ride to start with and I knew it and I knew I had to pace myself so I stopped trying to keep up with much faster people than me pretty quickly into the route.

Let's back up:

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Don't tell us to "Lighten up"!

Humor is a funny thing. It's very personal. Something you think is funny can leave me cold and vice versa. The other issue with humor is whether or not it is okay to offend people in the name of getting a laugh.

Some people hate Adam Sandler movies; some people love them. Some people find them offensive and some do not. The same with Kevin Smith, South Park, Joan Rivers and a lot of other humorists who tend to be controversial.

Several incidents have come up recently that were targeted by the "Bias Busters" program of the Obesity Action Coalition that have caused me to think about humor and what is entertainment and particularly about the oft-heard phrase when people do find a particular piece of humor to be offensive: Lighten Up! followed by the equally popular: Can't You Take a Joke?