When I was a kid I was as skinny as a rake. As thin as you like. Everything about me was skinny. Especially my arms. I always hated my arms. All the other boys in my class had thick arms. Muscley even. Mine were like twigs in comparrison, and boy was I made to feel bad about it.
Even after leaving school and diving headlong into the world of work, I still remained thin. No matter how much beer and junk food I piled into my stomach, I never seemed to put on any weight. In fact, it’s only in the past few years that I’ve really begun to fill out somewhat. I put that partly down to my medication – antidepressants are notorious for encouraging weight gain – but mostly down to my lifestyle. When I stopped working as a baker and got myself a desk job was the real turning point. I just wasn’t getting any real exercise any more apart from the 5 minute walk each way from the office to my home.
Anyway, ever since I’ve put a bit of weight on, I’m constantly being reminded of it. I’m often getting asked “How’s the diet going?” when I’m not actually on a diet. Or I’m told that “I would feel a lot better if I lost some weight.”
This really gets my goat. I’ve suffered with mental health issues for most of my life. Even when I was stick thin I suffered and I still felt like shit for the most part. So why would losing a bit of weight now suddenly make all the difference?
Why do I constantly hear people saying that exercise is the solution to all of my mental health problems? I used to take part in cross country at school and I used to cycle 7 miles to college each way and I never felt any different.
Here’s the thing. Even though I am probably a little fatter than I would like to be, I’m not really that bothered. It doesn’t bother me that I’ve got a bit of a belly going on and I can no longer fit into 30″ waist jeans. So why then does it bother other people so much?
I’m more bothered about getting my troubled mind into a good place as a main priority than worrying about going jogging three times a week or eating more salad.
Besides, I like chocolate too much.