Until I had scheduled lunch with them. And now as I'm eating my lunch I have to listen to this:
Woman 1: "I can't believe I have to go to Florida next week. I don't think
any of my summer clothes fit."
Woman 2: "Yeah, you've put on some weight here," (indicates Woman 1's hip area). "You
should probably just starve yourself."
Woman 2: "I had shrimp scampi and a bloody mary for dinner last night."
Woman 1: "Fatty."
Woman 3: "Oh, I misunderstood you. I thought you were saying 'Hey, chubby!' and you
were talking to me."
There's more, trust me. It's actually a daily thing that conversations revolve entirely around how their bodies look and what they're eating. So, over lunch one day, listening to the list of Weight Watchers points an Easter Dinner would tally, and listening to how thankful they are for diet soda, and how much it sucks to drag their "fat asses" to the gym, I said, "I think Zumba is really fun." Immediately I got that once-over look that girls give each other as a quick summation of your body size and thusly your worth. I proceded to tell them in explicit detail that Zumba is so fun that I normally go four days a week and plus I go to this really awesome yoga class.
The conversation took a turn to what it meant to be body positive, and about fat acceptance, and that's when it happened - the look of certain doubt. The look that I am not to be trusted about any health or nutrition information because I am a fat girl. As if somehow being thin makes you implicitly healthy and an expert on all things nutrition related.
But it seems like a natural response for my ideas to be shrugged off as jargon or - and this might be even worse - for people to look at me reassuringly and say, "Well, if you keep it up, I'm sure you'll reach all your goals." Firstly, "keep it up?" Keep it up? I have maintained an excellent physical fitness routine for almost five years. And after losing some weight, I gained some weight, and I still haven't really changed my fitness routine. So, I'll keep that in mind, but I'm pretty sure I can "keep it up." Secondly, what "goals" are we talking about? Are we talking about my goals for me to keep my body healthy (healthy not thin)? If so, I've succeeded, thanks. Or are we talking about your projected goals of my assumed quest for weight loss? Ah, yes, I figured. Well, please, keep your diet soda and your idea that that will help you lose weight. Because there is not a single study that proves weight loss and dieting are effective in the long term. However, there are myriad studies that show weight loss cycles (yo-yo dieting) is less healthy than being obese. Many people damage their current health by dropping weight too quickly or ingesting harmful chemicals deemed "critical" for weight loss, and then subsequently gain the weight back. But, fret not. If you are obese like me, you're actually quite healthy.