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Some people just don't get it...

Old 07-20-15, 10:56 AM
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MikeRides
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Some people just don't get it...

I attended a family reunion yesterday where I saw relatives I haven't seen in since my childhood. I was always a chubby kid so when I spoke with them, many of them were stunned at the fact I wasn't overweight. One relative who I haven't seen for 3 years walked up to me and asked if I was feeling better. That started a chain reaction, I started getting bombarded with questions such as "What was wrong? Were you sick? What illness did you have? How long were you in the hospital?"...and the like. When I told them I simply just felt like losing weight and getting fit, they all jumped to the conclusion that I must have had some kind of medical condition to bring on this drastic decision. After all, who would embark on such a big lifestyle change when they didn't have to, right?

I started this new chapter in my life not to lose weight, but simply because I wanted to become more fit. The weight loss came on it's own after I decided to cut out all processed and sugary foods/drinks and force myself to exercise an hour or more daily.

Is it really hard to believe that someone could sense their own problem and want to fix it on their own or do are we all robots who require a doctor to be told what to do?

Naturally I can't be the only one here with this experience, feel free to share your story.
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Old 07-20-15, 11:13 AM
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I don't get the reactions you do/did. I do get the "How did you do it?" questions but that's it.
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Old 07-20-15, 11:39 AM
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I think there's a bit of an overweight is normal mentality amongst some families.
You'll see morbidly obese mom & dad at the store with their morbidly obese (or soon to be) children. The children just assume that's normal because the parents are telling them everyone else is too thin or skinny, while sub?consciously trying to justify their own appearance.
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Old 07-20-15, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
I think there's a bit of an overweight is normal mentality amongst some families.
You'll see morbidly obese mom & dad at the store with their morbidly obese (or soon to be) children. The children just assume that's normal because the parents are telling them everyone else is too thin or skinny, while sub?consciously trying to justify their own appearance.
+1

It's kind of sad (or GREAT, depending on how you look at it) that how one was raised and the standards (in this case, physical health) became ingrained in one's mentality. For some, they're fortunate to have a family that values health. Others, unfortunately, have a tough hill to climb.

Some people see food as a luxury to be savored in all it's glory and varieties and quantities, even at the expense of having to find a new wardrobe every couple seasons because of that expanding waistline. But hey, what's wrong with a few extra pounds, right? That can always get taken care of tomorrow.

GOOD for you, sir, you have taken your life into your own hands and have become master of self, a self-control practitioner, and I hope the work that you see paying off and the satisfaction it brings outweighs any reactions anyone has towards that. Keep it up.
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Old 07-20-15, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
I think there's a bit of an overweight is normal mentality amongst some families.
You'll see morbidly obese mom & dad at the store with their morbidly obese (or soon to be) children. The children just assume that's normal because the parents are telling them everyone else is too thin or skinny, while sub?consciously trying to justify their own appearance.
+2. I was touring in South Dakota last month and I saw a lot of local families like that. Even more at touristy places like Mount Rushmore. The last night on the road I stayed at a massive KOA resort. I wasn't cooking this tour so I had dinner at the resort's restaurant. There was a large (in number) family there. Mom. Dad. Maybe four kids and a woman who I think was an aunt. All of them were large. The mom got a HUGE plate of chicken fried steak with a large biscuit and sausage gravy.

I have done a good amount of loaded touring. Campgrounds are a particularly great place to witness the sedentary lifestyle. I routinely see people drive some sort of motorized vehicle, be it car, truck, ATV or golf cart, the equivalent of a city block or two, often times to get ice cream from the camp store. I have even seen golf carts for rent at some campgrounds, although the trend now seems to be owning your own.
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Old 07-20-15, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeRides View Post
Is it really hard to believe that someone could sense their own problem and want to fix it on their own or do are we all robots who require a doctor to be told what to do?
I was at my heaviest (265 lbs. at 6'2") in college. I knew I had gotten big. I wish I would tell you what I was thinking as I was gaining weight. Why I wasn't able to say "This is not good" and take action on my own to change it. Alas, I cannot remember what was going through my mind back then. I worked as a stock clerk in the school's largest dining hall. I was on my feet for 5 hr. shifts 3 days/week, often carrying heavy loads up and down stairs. My feet started to hurt very badly. I thought I had stress fractures or something. Went to see my mother's GP doctor. I will never forget the exchange after he examined me:

"You know why your feet hurt?
"Why?"
"Because you are fat."

He pointed to my stretch marks and asked "What are those?" "Stretch marks" I replied with embarrassment. "My God," I thought. My cousins and I used to tease an obese cousin about his stretch marks. I was becoming him. The doctor told me I needed to lose weight. Best piece of medical advice I ever got. Lost 90 lbs. in 9 months.

While I like to think I would have made the turnaround on my own before things got really bad. worse, I cannot say for sure that I would have.
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Old 07-20-15, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I wish I would tell you what I was thinking as I was gaining weight. Why I wasn't able to say "This is not good" and take action on my own to change it.
Because you were "big boned" or "it's all muscle under there" or any myriad of excuses everybody here has used. For some reason, looking in the mirror isn't as truth inducing as seeing a photograph of yourself either, and fat people have all kinds of tricks to hid from cameras. "Does this (article of clothing) make me look fat" has to be the most ******** question ever uttered. No, your fat makes you look fat, those jeans just don't hide it as well as that mumu you normally wear.

You know one key thing thin people do that fat people don't? They're active. They move around a lot. Not necessarily exercise, but they're physically busy. Like your ice cream store at the camp site example, who's driving the block to the store?

The other thing fat people do is fool themselves into thinking "Oh, I'm on vacation, or it's the weekend, or just one (sleeve) of oreos won't be a problem." Have you SEEN the size of sodas they serve at fast food joints? Today's small is literally the largest size you would have been able to buy in the 80s, and it's nothing but ice and processed sugars.

Your doctor's approach is interesting - in 2015, his subject would probably think he was inescapably rude and find another doctor. For telling the truth!

I think @MikeRides has identified the chiefest problem - there's more familial support for being fat than there is for being healthy. It all starts with how you load your pantry, too.
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Old 07-20-15, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
Have you SEEN the size of sodas they serve at fast food joints? Today's small is literally the largest size you would have been able to buy in the 80s, and it's nothing but ice and processed sugars.

Your doctor's approach is interesting - in 2015, his subject would probably think he was inescapably rude and find another doctor. For telling the truth!

I think @MikeRides has identified the chiefest problem - there's more familial support for being fat than there is for being healthy. It all starts with how you load your pantry, too.
Can't remember where I was, but some convenience store chain was selling giant, reusable plastic "mugs" for soft drink refills. I use the term "mugs" in quotes because they were really like jugs. Probably a half gallon. I remember when a 12 oz. can was the largest. Then came 16 oz. Then 20 oz. And so on. The funny (or sad, depending on how you look at it) thing is that Coca Cola (and probably others) and now selling smaller sizes at a premium. They are making a bunch of money selling 10 oz. Cokes at a per unit price that is higher than it is for a 16 oz. bottle.

I sometimes think about that. Telling someone flat out they are fat and need to lose weight would probably not go over well with many people.

I rarely shop at "normal" grocery stores. Much of my food comes from Whole Foods or local merchants selling fresh meat, fish and vegetables. When I do shop at a normal grocery store, which maybe happens a maybe 6-8 times/year at home but more frequently when I am touring, I often walk around and look at some of the crap you can find on the shelves and in the coolers. I also look at people's carts. What I see is often quite shocking. If you are so heavy you have to lean on your shopping cart for support you should put back the junk food.

When in SD last month I ate at two restaurants that had salad bars. Those salad bars had some fresh vegetables, but they also had things like tuna salad, chicken salad, potato salad, pasta salad with some vegies and macaroni salad, all coasted with "healthy" amounts of mayo. Both places also had green peas mixed with what appeared to be ranch dressing. Why?
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Old 07-20-15, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
The funny (or sad, depending on how you look at it) thing is that Coca Cola (and probably others) and now selling smaller sizes at a premium. They are making a bunch of money selling 10 oz. Cokes at a per unit price that is higher than it is for a 16 oz. bottle.

Back when I was a long haul truck driver forced to live out of truck stops 6 weeks at a time, it always amazed me that a 20oz soda was 1.79 but a 2 liter was 0.79.....and the 2 liters were stocked in the cooler and sold cold..../ponder

No one made me fat but me, my own poor decision making has done this to me.....but they sure don't make it easy to make the RIGHT decisions. Sadly, once you get so far down that road, it becomes VERY hard to simply U-turn and start correcting the problem on your own.
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Old 07-20-15, 05:26 PM
  #10  
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Many people have misconceptions about others losing weight, especially if all they know is the overweight person. Also lots of people will not acknowledge having been sick because they don't want others thinking of them as "weak".

Anyway, telling someone once that you lost weight because you controlled your food intake and because you trained should be enough. After all, they probably don't want you thinking they are dumb...

All the best,
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Old 07-20-15, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I rarely shop at "normal" grocery stores. Much of my food comes from Whole Foods or local merchants selling fresh meat, fish and vegetables. When I do shop at a normal grocery store, which maybe happens a maybe 6-8 times/year at home but more frequently when I am touring, I often walk around and look at some of the crap you can find on the shelves and in the coolers. I also look at people's carts. What I see is often quite shocking. If you are so heavy you have to lean on your shopping cart for support you should put back the junk food.
Same here, I rarely shop at regular grocery stores. I'll shop at Walmart if I'm out of town for whatever reason (business, vacation). I actually prefer growing my own produce(or supporting local farmers), I buy grass fed beef & free range chicken (and even eggs) from a local butcher, and love to fish. I've been a Whole Foods market once my entire life, I don't know what about it I didn't care for the most, their selection didn't really stand out for me and the prices seemed outrageous compared to a local health food co-op I used to shop at frequently - now I shop there maybe 5-6 times a year.

Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
I think there's a bit of an overweight is normal mentality amongst some families.
You'll see morbidly obese mom & dad at the store with their morbidly obese (or soon to be) children. The children just assume that's normal because the parents are telling them everyone else is too thin or skinny, while sub?consciously trying to justify their own appearance.
+3. I get this impression quite a bit, it seems everyone in my immediate and extended family are either borderline obese or full on obese, mainly because they don't know any better. My younger brother has surpassed my all time highest goal (~240) last year, I've been shopping for a road bike and offered him my hybrid as well as moral support by riding with him to get him off his a$$ and lose some of that weight but he just insists exercise isn't for him and yet every time I see him, he wonders why he always has some kind of new physical ailment going on

Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I was at my heaviest (265 lbs. at 6'2") in college. I knew I had gotten big. I wish I would tell you what I was thinking as I was gaining weight. Why I wasn't able to say "This is not good" and take action on my own to change it. Alas, I cannot remember what was going through my mind back then. I worked as a stock clerk in the school's largest dining hall. I was on my feet for 5 hr. shifts 3 days/week, often carrying heavy loads up and down stairs. My feet started to hurt very badly. I thought I had stress fractures or something. Went to see my mother's GP doctor. I will never forget the exchange after he examined me:

"You know why your feet hurt?
"Why?"
"Because you are fat."

He pointed to my stretch marks and asked "What are those?" "Stretch marks" I replied with embarrassment. "My God," I thought. My cousins and I used to tease an obese cousin about his stretch marks. I was becoming him. The doctor told me I needed to lose weight. Best piece of medical advice I ever got. Lost 90 lbs. in 9 months.

While I like to think I would have made the turnaround on my own before things got really bad. worse, I cannot say for sure that I would have.
If only more doctors would speak up! Maybe it would cut down on some of our healthcare costs if everyone stuck to a healthy diet and active lifestyle, less would require drugs to more or less stay alive. I was talking to two relatives Sunday, both only in their 40s and already restricted to motorized scooters. One of them used to ride a bike for transportation, before accepting a salaried position behind a desk and giving up the bike. He's now on disability/welfare and wishes he never gave up riding. I told him about a couple stories I read on this forum, from people who were in the exact same position, and his only response was "My doctor won't let me." Unfortunately I couldn't disagree, since in my experience I had a PCP who basically told me not to perform any exercise because of a high BP and family history of heart problems. I ignored him and started biking, then trained for a 5k mud run last summer. I'm still here stronger than ever with a recent clean bill of health, needless to say I don't see that PCP anymore. I think my daughter said it best Sunday, "There's nothing wrong with those two that a daily walk around the block couldn't fix." :-)
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Old 07-20-15, 08:35 PM
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I've had people ask me what "was" wrong, now that I'm 60 lbs lighter (I'm only 5'8" so it shows quite significantly). In my case, I did have a treatable medical condition that was effectively zapping me of all energy. I slept all the hours I wasn't at work. Forget eating, I couldn't even muster the energy to grocery shop or cook or even buy take out. I lived off coffee, tea, and water for months because that was all that stayed down. I also used to eat plain ketchup and mustard, sounds gross but it helped with the nausea (still does, but now I use them as condiments not meals lol). My coworkers lectured me on how I should quit eating all that fast food and pop, while in reality I was not eating at all, and my hair was falling out in fistfuls. Constant dark circles, peeling skin, etc. I looked sick because I was.

Then I got treatment for the condition (which is ongoing and will continue indefinitely), which had the side effect of weight loss because it restored my metabolism to something resembling normal and gave me enough energy to do the things I wanted (including exercise but also hobbies etc). I dropped 30 lbs pretty quickly and since then it has been steadier and healthier. I'm healthier and clearly look it, but in my case, the treatment caused the weight loss not the other way around. The hair is back, skin is normal and not falling off, etc. I've lost 60 lbs so far and aiming for 60 more which should take me down to about 120 lbs. But barring a situation like that, I agree with you, there does not need to be a medical reason to lose weight, other than just wanting to lose weight. Hell, I know people who are already healthy and thin but continue to pursue weight loss to achieve a lower body fat %. Any reason is a good reason.

Congrats on your weight loss, glad to see all the other positive stories in this thread.

Last edited by lane_33; 07-20-15 at 08:41 PM. Reason: paragraphs
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Old 07-20-15, 08:36 PM
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You guys (or gals) ever see a show called "My 600 lb life"

It's crazy.
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Old 07-21-15, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
You guys (or gals) ever see a show called "My 600 lb life"

It's crazy.
The wife and I often sit down and have dinner while watching it. Best appetite suppressant I have ever seen. While I may be overweight those folks on that show are near their last stages of life if they do not change what they are doing.
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Old 07-21-15, 09:36 AM
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I think that people in the OP post often hope that it's a medical condition causing weight loss if they themselves are obese. They hate to think that their own weight problem could be controlled with diet and exercise.
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Old 07-21-15, 10:16 AM
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I went from 405 in January 2013 to a low of 252 in October of 2014. Pretty much everyone was supportive of it. I got the feeling that some folks wondered if I was sick or something. Some asked me what the catalyst was. I didn't have a good answer. I just found a method that worked for me, calorie counting and lots of exercise. I think even at 252, I was still in the obese category but man it felt way better than 405.

I've now gained back up to 275 since I quit doing two a day workouts. I just can't sustain that long term. I need to go back and completely revamp my diet and restart the weight loss process again. But even 275 feels a lot better than 405.
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Old 07-21-15, 01:10 PM
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Good for you for making the decision and then following through.

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Old 07-24-15, 12:09 AM
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Dropping from 230 in Feb 2014 to 167lbs for the past few weeks... I have had nothing but VERY positive!

Its the 21+ mile bike rides on a $1000+ bike they think is crazy

Congrats on the progress, honestly, for me, its been so easy to keep off. I can't hardly eat enough calories in a day if I exercise. I have to FORCE food in! 2 years ago I would eat 2x as much as I had burned, and wonder why I didn't lose weight... lol
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