Friday, September 11, 2015

Never Trust a Big Butt with a Smile

Girl I must warn you
I sense something strange in my mind
Situation is serious....

Ahhh....those lyrics take me way back in the day when I lived in Germany. I remember the first time I heard the song "Poison." I was on a military based in Schwabach, Germany and that song by Bell Biv Devoe came on a jukebox. Yes, I said...a jukebox. I love that song then and I still love it now. You can't go to a party and not start dancing when that song comes on. Its just energetic and funky. What's funny though about the song is that it kind of forecasted this strange time we are in with fitness and this obsession with social media and asses.

Every where you turn there are men and women taking pics with their shirts off or sports bras on, but even more are the pictures of women taking pictures in the bathroom or in the gym showing their asses while wearing gigantic sized headphones and crazy colored pants and bras. In fact there are even people out there who are making a living off of showing their ass on a daily basis. When did this happen and why? While it can be taken as just fun and people seeking attention on social media, there is a dark under current to the proliferation of women showing their asses and smiling away. Never Trust a Big Butt with a Smile people. 

Recently a co-worker of mine came across this powerful infographic that I have linked here called "The Cost of Getting Lean: Is it Worth Really Worth the Trade Off? I found that this info graphic and article hit home on a very serious point on the cost of being super fit. One of the dark sides to those Instagram pics of asses is the constant stream of captions focusing on clean eating (usually including constant tupperware meal preparation), being a gym rat, pushing weird supplements, and an obsession with providing as many booty based exercises as possible. Then there's the persistent memes about squats, lunges, etc. 

Again, while it looks great and undeniably its great that people are seeing more value in fitness, the ultimate downfall is a large psychological abyss filled with body image issues, poor social and emotional connections, and a hyper focus on only fitness and wellness. There is nothing glamorous about being super fit if it means that you can't have a well rounded life. I'm not asking you to agree with me in this post. I'm asking you to examine this culture that has sprung up and why anyone would want to follow it? You might have a rubuttal for me and say that at least these folks are helping to get people motivated to exercise. And my response is are they? Still only 20 percent of people actually exercise regularly. That's an incredibly small percentage of people. And I would further ask you to look at the psychological fall out of living an extreme lifestyle. Is that sustainable? Certainly not.  

More and more research is being devoted to over-exercise, injury and orthorexia (the obsession with eating foods that one thinks is healthy or avoiding foods that are deemed harmful). Its a real problem that you are seeing with the exploding nature of social and TV media. I don't know about you, but I don't want to hang out with someone who I can't have a beer with because they deem beer to be bad for you. I don't want to schedule a fun dinner with friends because they have to be in the gym to get their workout in or because they can't eat out because that's considered bad for you. No, what's bad for you is devoting an excessive amount of time into something that has tremendous psycho-social and oddly enough physical consequences for you. 

As someone who is very educated in these matters, who is very fit and who has been in the fitness business for well over a decade, I can tell you that being sedentary or being someone obsessed with exercise and nutrition are both highly unhealthy. And the worst thing about each of those behaviors is that if you have kids or a significant other, you are teaching those behaviors to your loved ones. Especially with your kids. Do you want that? Do you want your daughters and sons to sedentary? Or do you want then to over-exercise and be obsessed with what foods they eat? I don't think you want either of those. I have a daughter and the best thing I can do and that I do currently is that she sees me working out extremely hard and she sees me resting and taking time to recover my body. She also sees Daddy eating pizza AND eating tofu. She sees me drinking wine and beer AND drinking water. I always tell my daughter that you need to have fun in life and also work hard, but take time to enjoy it. You only get one life. 

I'm here to tell you its possible be fit, but also have a ton of fun enjoying the awesome things that life has to offer. I promise you, you will find more satisfaction by living a well balanced life than one that is extreme in whatever thing you are focusing on. There's nothing to celebrate about that. Never Trust a Big Butt with a Smile...

(Singing) "Poison!!!" 

Until next time...

Dr. D
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