I happened across this blog post from The Life & Lessons of Rachel Wilkerson. Her post was about a story written in Marie Clare about some healthy living bloggers. The point of the story was that these girls, these bloggers, were fairly obsessive and had unhealthy relationships with food and exercise. It gave examples of destroying food in order to avoid eating it and of examples of excessive eating which was “earned” by excessive exercise.
Rachel’s post tells about the backlash to that story and her opinions on it, people’s responses, and in general, the responsibility of being a writer and in particular, a blogger.
So, I read the article. Then I looked up the blogs of these six women.
I thought about what Rachel wrote.
And I can’t stop thinking about it. It seems to me that the crimes of these women is that they obsess. They think carefully about what they eat. They make specific exercise goals and plans and they adhere to them. And they post, every day, about what they ate or cooked and what sort of exercise they partook in. Truth be told, I can’t tell them apart after reading a week’s worth of content. I think they’re all training for or just ran marathons. They like oatmeal. And peanut butter. A lot.
I can totally relate. When I am “on the wagon” I think about everything I eat and the exercise I plan on doing constantly. I am rigid. I have a complete menu of what I’m going to eat for the week, and then that’s what I eat for the week. I worry about deviating. I know what exercise I’m planning to do. I worry about trying to fit it all in. I think about how I can try to incorporate other exercises into my schedule.
The thing is, though, that if I don’t obsess, then I’m off the wagon. I can’t just be casual. I wish I could. I would love to be a person who just makes good choices, indulges only occasionally, and enjoys exercise. But I’m not. Or at least I haven’t been to date.
So which is worse? Is it worse to have issues, but be working towards health and fitness? Or to let the issues go and be fat? If I have to choose one, I choose to obsess.
2 responses to “obsession”
Heyoh! Thanks for the shout-out — it’s good to see my post is still making people think about these issues!! And I just wanted to say that a year ago, I would have written the same thing about “if I don’t obsess, then I fall off the wagon.” I used to not be able to be casual AT ALL — I was SO all or nothing, that’s just my nature. But now I truly believe that being able to enjoy exercise and make good choices and indulge occasionally IS possible…but it takes work and time and patience with yourself. I guess I just hope that all women, but especially those who blog as experts and are in leadership roles, will eventually realize that they can be healthy and even lose weight without being completely unforgiving of themselves or spending so much time in the gym that they miss out on all the delicious things life has to offer.
Hey Maggie…I don’t know how I hadn’t been reading your blog (besides the gratitude blog) before the book club, but I am loving your writing. I totally could have written this post. I’m so all or nothing it’s ridiculous. But reading Women, Food & God has made me really think about it more. I still don’t know why. And I don’t know if I can give up the obsessing, or if I should. Thanks for backing me up over there! And I missed the comment you made on the prologue about eye-rolling until this morning when I went back to re-read that post. Yes! I was totally eye-rolling, but I’ve been doing that ever since I first heard the title. Since I don’t even believe in god, it’s sort of been an extra step to figure out how to apply what she is saying to me. Anyways…