Wednesday 21 January 2015

Fitness Shaming

Hey lovelies,
Today I want to talk about something a bit different, and I don’t even quite know what to call it maybe – “fitness shaming”?

I made a conscious decision to change my life for the better two years ago, change my activity levels and change the way I eat. This change started off as a new year’s resolution, but has wholeheartedly become my life. This has become something that has changed so much more than just my body. I have learned that life is about how much you put in. You need to work for something if you want it. And that yes you can do amazing things if you just try. Yet, there is one little negative thing that has developed with this new fitness lifestyle – “fitness shaming”.

As soon as someone hears that I ‘eatclean’ or go to the gym on a regular basis they often feel a need to make fun of me. Make fun of the food I eat, the times I go to the gym and the water bottle I carry around with me. It is all done in a joking way, but it is quite clearly still happening.  Things like “You go to the gym aalllll the time, just don’t go today” or “chicken and veggies again, don’t you get sick of it”. Like I am sorry that my eating habits and gym going upsets you so much! Why do you care?!  

Maybe it’s just me, but I feel offended if someone asks me if I can eat this piece of cake. Like why not? I’m not allergic to any types of food; I am not vegan/vegetarian or anything like that so I do not have any dietary restriction. Why would I not be able to eat this cake? If I want to eat a piece of cake I will, but I don’t need people around me questioning what I can or can’t eat. The more I am thinking about it, this is probably more to do with “healthy food shaming”. Why do people get so annoyed if I am snacking on some cucumber slices instead of a chocolate bar?

Another time this “fitness shaming” becomes apparent is when it comes to alcohol. I drink alcohol if and when I want to. Very often I have found that I actually do not want to drink alcohol even if I am going out for drinks with friends. This seems to not be okay with people. Again why do they care if I am drinking a virgin cocktail or one with alcohol? And then all night I get silly comments like “oh are you pregnant?” and “Why don’t you just have one?!” It’s my body I get to choose what I want to put into it.

I was recently invited for a dinner with friends. Days before the dinner I was asked multiple times if there is anything I don’t eat – this was nice, I mean it is kind to check with your guests. And my answer was no, because I eat anything and everything in moderation (I am not a picky eater what so every, thanks mum for forcing me to try everything!). Yet this was not understandable because “You are so healthy, are you sure?” Again, anything is fine. “Do I need to make a salad for you?” No. Being healthy does not mean all I eat is salad! And then at this dinner it was assumed I would not want to have the starter, so it wasn’t served to me. AWKWARD. 

I am sorry this blog post is a bit unorganized and rambly. I want to clarify that this is not everyone; a lot of people are really supportive and interested in knowing more. But then there are these odd people around who seem to care way too much about what I am eating and how I am living my life.
Has anyone else experienced something like this?