Thursday, November 17, 2005

The Artificial Thin Person

You've seen the ads in women's magazines:

"I have always felt like a thin person in a fat body?"

Oh, really?

If only we could chisel our bodies the way we want; whenever we gained weight, we could trot out our trusty tool and simply carve away the problem areas. Lipo, I suppose, offers this as a limited option.

Unfortunately, I would need to cut away about one-third of my body. Not an option.

I have never felt like a thin person, even when I was thin--I was always a fat person, on the verge of bursting out of a tight skin.

And I did burst out, albeit slowly and methodically. Gaining weight actually takes longer to accomplish than losing it; if you don't believe me, go back and figure out how long it took you to lose that 50 pounds. Six months? A year? Then count the years it took to pile it back on--in my case, two and even three years. Gaining just seems faster. The old yo-yo syndrome.

Now I'm about to embark on a marathon, to go into training as a thin person, never mind what the mirror says.

I'm doing this...why?

In about a year or two or three or four, I plan to be thin, at least thinner--if I can permanently incorporate hara hachi bu into my life, a lower body weight will be an inevitable offshoot. I'll never be bone-jutting thin, nor would I want to be. I could never find comfort in a body like that.
I'm taking it slow; if I follow hara hachi bu today, then that's a major victory, tomorrow, yet another victory. If I ever backslide, then that's life, and I'm not going to beat myself up over it, nor will I ever allow other people to dictate how I feel about my body.

So, as of today, November 17, 2005, I am an artificial thin person, in training for the real deal, fully recognizing that my run will not always follow a linear road, but sometimes a looping, often backtracking, foot-dragging shuffle.


Jennifer Semple Siegel

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