What do you mean I'm fat?

Posted July 29, 2010

What do you mean I'm fat?

I recently decided to join a gym for the first time in my life.  The results of my initial fitness assessment were much better than I had hoped for and I was starting to feel quite good about myself until the personal trainer fed back my body fat score. He pointed to a spot on a sliding scale which said FAT.

I stared in disbelief. “It’s funny how you ladies all get hung up on that one word”, he said. Realising that I wasn’t laughing, he swiftly moved the conversation on and asked me what I wanted to achieve at the gym. I said I was fairly happy with my shape but wanted to tone up a bit, particularly my stomach and waistline.

I was hoping he'd say, “We’ll work on that”. What he actually said was, “Oh dear! Unfortunately we all gain weight around our middle when we reach a certain age”. At this point I wanted to punch him.

I left the gym in need of cheering myself up. So I headed straight to my local tea shop and ordered a large slice of coffee and walnut cake. I don’t even like cake that much but I felt an overwhelming compulsion to eat something naughty.

I did actually return to my gym a few times but found that, after my initial assessment, there was little my personal trainer could say that would motivate me to persist. A government health minister has recently suggested that doctors and nurses should tell people straight upfront if they are fat in order to motivate them to lose weight. Being assessed as FAT certainly didn’t motivate me to get fit. Or did it? I’ve never gone back to the gym but I have now found a Pilates class which I love and I swim twice a week.

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