Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Being Fat in a Fit World

As you might have surmised from my post, yesterday was not exactly a banner day for me.

I had finally managed to drag ass out of bed early enough to get to the gym without incident. I strapped on my brand spanky new sneakers and headed out to the treadmill to give them a good test run.

And that's when it stopped being fun.

Issue the first: heel slippage. Now, I want to clarify that what I'm talking about is that the shoe flops around on the back of my heel. It's annoying, but it's not specifically injury inducing (although I don't know if that will change when I start running). But it's annoying. Really annoying. And, depending on how bad it is, can cause my socks to suck down into my shoe and bunch up, which would be, at the very least, blister inducing. The slip in these shoes doesn't seem to be that bad.

Issue the second: by nine minutes, my right foot was cramping.

Issue the third: by twenty minutes, the toes on my right foot were going numb.

In other words: $125 and a "fit specialist" later and I still didn't have shoes that I could even walk thirty minutes in comfortably.

Furthermore, considering that he had basically exhausted his stock and then had to tweak the closest-fitting shoe he could find, I am reasonably sure that there is nothing else this particular store can do for me in the way of finding me a good shoe.




So frustrated I could hardly see straight and so angry and heartbroken I spent most of the day fighting tears.

What Shoe Guy had said was that he thinks my foot isn't sitting deeply enough into the heel cup, and that's why they slip.

Translation: my foot is too fat to fit correctly in athletic shoes.

So here we are $125 and a fit specialist later and what I know is that I'm fat and this is A Problem.

Y'all. The fitness industry is geared towards people who are already fit.

Even though doctors and nurses and health organizations and the news and the multi-billion dollar diet industry all tell us we should lose weight and that we should exercise and that we should get our fat, lazy asses off the couch, it is still a major pain in the ass to find fitness gear, exercise classes, workout equipment geared towards people who are fat.

Yes, I know I can pay (even) more and go to specialty shops and maybe, hopefully find products that fit and work for me, but I'm already working so hard to wedge what I can into an already strained budget that the thought of having to pay $50 for a pair of pants is beyond anything even approaching reasonability.

I know that the fitness industry is geared towards people who are already fit because they are, by and large, the consumers of fitness products. I get that. But it is so frustrating and disheartening to hit yet another "too fat to play" wall.

Again and again and again.

Yesterday I was so angry and broken hearted that I was seriously considering cancelling my gym membership and just calling it quits. I felt like the smelly kid that nobody wants to play with on the playground. What was the point of trying, anymore, when it's just a series of road blocks?

This morning I went back to the gym and I got back on the treadmill and my right foot didn't seem like it was hurting as bad as it had the day before. I went for forty minutes and then took a shower and gradually came to the realization that I no longer felt quite so discouraged and disheartened.

In fact, I felt very much like I was going to pursue what I wanted to, and everyone else was just going to have to make room.

Because there's a Fat Girl coming through!

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