What it is being like being an obese woman.
I haven’t been obese all my life. I was skinny when I was a child, and grew up as a very active, fit and healthy teenager. It was only when I left school that the weight started to pile on. In my adult life, I have always been overweight.
Except twice. Twice, I managed to lose a great amount of weight, and then was thin-ish (thin for me. I’m tall and have big bones, I will never be skinny). But both times I lost weight, I put it all back on again, plus a bit of extra. For luck.
Or padding. Or protection. Whatever you want to call it.
It is only recently that I have found myself to be classified as ‘obese’. I wasn’t just overweight. I wasn’t just a bit chubby. I was fat. Fatter than ‘normal’ fat people. I was obese. This came as quite a shock to me when I realized this. When did I go from being ‘just’ overweight to absolutely obese? That’s the thing. I don’t know. I don’t know when the scale flipped from ‘ooh, you need to lose a few kilos!’ to ‘holy cow, I’m not sure I can go this high’.
Being obese has affected my life in many different ways. Most of these things would never have been thought of or considered by someone who is not, or has never been, fat.
- When you go boot shopping in winter, but you can never find the perfect boots because any boot that goes higher than an ankle boot doesn’t close over your massive calves.
- Struggling in the heat, because you have so much more padding than everyone else, you feel the heat more, and sweat. Out of every. single. sweat gland.
- Having to wear cycling shorts underneath every pretty dress, because if you don’t, your legs will rub together and chafe. And the sweat makes it worse (see point above).
- Not being able to exercise properly because your boobs are too big and get in the way.
- Struggling to walk anything more than a short distance, because you get out of breath quickly, and you get shin splints.
- Not being able to sit on a swing with your child because you are already over the maximum weight it can take, and adding that little extra tiny 20kg of your child could be that extra it needs to break.
- Not being able to just ‘pop down to the beach with the kids’ because “What do I wear?!”
- Sitting in certain chairs that are quite small, and finding that either you don’t fit, or you only just fit. (And when you get up the chair gets up with you)
- Always feeling uncomfortable in your clothes. Shirts need to be long to cover your belly and your bum, but this is not currently the fashion. Perfectly comfortable shorts that are a bit too short, so you can’t even wear them out of the house.
- Finding amazing (and inexpensive) active wear, but the company only makes up to an XXL (what is XXL anyway? A 12, a 16?? Whose perception is it?), which is still too small for you. So you either have to go for the men’s stuff, or go to another shop.
- Not ever being able to find a sports bra that actually comes in your big size AND holds your girls in place. And if you do, it costs thousands.
- Not ever being able to find a full-piece swimming costume that fits you. Apparently, ‘normal’ fat people have small boobs. So even though the costume is a big size, the boob size is not.
- Struggling to find stockings because ‘super large’ is either not on shelf, or totally out of stock (must be more people than just me needing this size, if it is because it is out of stock…) Or that brand just doesn’t make stockings that big.
But. I’m tired of all these things (and these are just the things that I can think about now!). So I’m making a change in my life. Well, I did 4 months ago. 4 months ago I decided to start this journey. Making that decision was the first step. And every day that I eat clean, go to gym, and use my Herbex products, I am taking another step towards a better, healthier, happier life. Hopefully there won’t be any shin splints along the way.