Thursday, June 09, 2011

Workin on my fitness.

Recently I had an interesting conversation about fitness with someone.

She was really surprised that I know anything about fitness or have any interest because as we all know, no fat people anywhere ever know about fitness, have an interest in fitness or have any level of fitness.

Of course.

My interest in fitness started after my breast reduction when I was 14. Once I was all healed up and able to do things, I got pretty hooked.

I remember devouring books about building muscles, flexibility and dance. I did exercise videos, most memorably I did a lot of Jazzercise. My Mom had one tape that I loved doing.

At that tender and impressionable age I bought into all of the Exercise/diet industry bullshit. I truly believed in No Pain No Gain, I truly believed that if I would just try hard enough and use my shame as fuel I could in fact transform my body.

I did get fit. I was never a fast runner but I could run. I could run from class to class without feeling crappy. I got pretty flexible. I remember the first time I was able to do a beautiful flush split. I could do things that have been traditionally thought to indicate fitness.

What didn't happen was a lot of weightloss or bodily transformation.

As I've mentioned before I was still a chubby teenager. What I lacked in the cut muscles I dreamed of, I made up for with strength and muscles under my pad of puppy fat.

Fastfoward a long damn time and here I am.

For me some of the fitness activities I'm interested in doing, would hurt me. For instance among the things I am not built for that I've tried and enjoyed:

Acrobatics and tumbling

Now as much as I enjoyed doing those things as both hobbies and for fitness, my particular body (whether I was fat or thin at the time) did not appreciate it.

One of the reasons I know these things is not because I've bought into anything the Fitness/Diet/Wellness Industries have said but because it is important to me to understand how my personal body works.

That being what it is, shit I almost forgot what I was actually going to say here.

I've decided that walks are not cutting it for me and my fitness.

My big issue is that I get stiff and sore. So with that on my mind I'd like to regain some of my lost flexibility.

That said I don't want to do fucking yoga. WE all know I hate doing yoga.

I think unfortunately I may have to give in and do it anyway because simple stretching DVD's are kind of hard to find.

This is where I turn to you my darlings.

Have you knowledge of yoga DVD's that are not too preachy or new agey?

Reviews on that yoga for fat folks?

Tell me all of it darlings.


Louise said...

Megan Garcia's yoga stuff is pretty good, she's a fat lady herself. She has a book and a DVD, I think there might be a little bit of new agey stuff in the DVD but it's probably easily ignored as I don't even remember.

I guess it depends on how much you can afford or if you have insurance that covers it, but seeing an exercise physiologist even for 2-3 sessions might be a good idea. So much better than personal trainers, they give you super customised exercises for whatever you need. In my experience they are usually not weight-judgy as they see people of all shapes and sizes and abilities for the same problems like flexibility and movement. And they're not yoga.

Veronica said...

I feel like I just saw a review for Big Yoga or something like that on the fatosphere feed. Try going back a bit (a week tops)?

Tari said...

I'll second the recommendation for Megan Garcia's DVD and book ("Mega Yoga"). She has good advice on accomodations and altering poses for particular bodies, and it's a little new agey, but way less so than most yoga joints...and also doesn't get too RAHRAHLONGLEAN like some non-new-agey videos. The book is a great supplement - it adds more advanced poses and more variations, which I used to create a routine for myself that hits the areas I like to work the most without aggravating anything.

As an alternative that is sort of yoga-like, but more active, have you ever considered t'ai chi or qi gong? I have a couple DVDs from Lee Holden (a beginner one and one specifically for back pain) that are great. Slightly new agey with music and the setting, but it's more active than yoga, so you might like it better. (and it's really easy to learn the routines so you can do them to your own music)

I hope you find something that works for you and helps!

Katy said...

Or maybe pilates might appeal more? That's a lot of stretching and lengthening muscles plus it focuses on your core so good for preventing bad backs etc...

Anonymous said...

I haven't tried a lot of yoga videos, but I've been doing the "10 Minute Solutions" one. Its single biggest advantage, for me, is that it's available on Netflix instant downloads.

It has cheesy music and has occasional FA-unfriendly lines (e.g. "practice the series consistently and you'll notice a difference in your waist"--argh, and even if you did lose weight, you can't target a particular region for fat-burning) but is relatively low on both that and New Age-y stuff, mostly just focusing on doing the exercises. It's challenging enough that it's not boring.

vesta44 said...

Since I have issues with standing for any length of time, I bought a video called "Chair Aerobics for Everyone" (it came to less than $20 with shipping and handling). It shows 3 different levels of difficulty, I've been doing the easiest level so far and hope to eventually work up to the hardest level. It doesn't require any special equipment, you can use cans of veggies for the hand weights and roll up a big towel for the small ball used in it.
I got Megan Garcia's yoga dvd but couldn't do most of the poses that required me to be on hands and knees or knees (my knees are almost bone on bone and just won't tolerate that much pressure on them).

Subscribe To My Podcast