Thursday, April 11, 2013
Although that’s become a pejorative term, here’s my reasoning.
We all begin our journey to a healthy lifestyle at a different starting point. I totally accept the need for increasing muscle mass and reducing fat, but I’m beginning to wonder about all the put-downs and warnings toward those deemed to be “skinny-fat.”
I understand that it may be hard to convince a “skinny-fat” person that they have a problem and need to make changes since their weight is in the normal range, but they don’t have a monopoly on denial. I had 25 years experience convincing myself that my extra weight was just fine.
Once the decision is made to work out, increase muscle/lose fat, become stronger and eat a healthy diet, wouldn’t it be easier to do that without the need to limit calories also?
If someone is just plain “fat-fat,” the exercise (cardio, strength training etc) still is required, but food intake (calories) must be restricted too. That’s the part I found to be hard. I LIKED to eat large quantities of food.
I suppose the advice to the “skinny-fat” is well meaning and intended to warn them not to be complacent and to look at the big picture. However, considering that 2/3 of our society is overweight or obese, how big a problem is being “skinny-fat?” Looking around, I don’t think that our problem is an over-abundance of muscle.
I was complacent because I was active and fit which made it easy to overlook the extra pounds that had piled on. In addition, as society gained weight right along with me, comparatively I thought I was fine.
So while it’s important to encourage all people to live a healthy lifestyle and gain strength, I must admit being envious of those who can begin this journey without having to lose weight too.
Edit: If you're not familiar with the term, "skinny-fat" is what we have recently been calling people who are within or even near the low end of the normal weight range yet don't have the proper amount of muscle mass. Often they lack cardio endurance as well.
Their advantage is that when they finally decide to become stronger and change their lifestyle, they don't have to limit their calories.