Friday, 18 April 2008

Aqua Fat

It's difficult to find much to say about fat people at the gym. After all, they're at the gym, thus proving themselves to be in the 0.00001% of fat people who are overweight and choose to do something about it, instead of whining about their sore ankles and chafed thighs like disgruntled hippopotami. I have even more respect for those who choose to bypass the gym and head for the swimming pool; where even the most sculpted of men and women reveal a jamboree of wobbly bits beneath the water's surface and where skin tight Lycra is not just preference, but necessity. The fact is, no one really looks good in a Speedo one-piece, and contrary to what they may think, few men have the physique or the suitably hairless back needed in order to pull off swimming trunks.

Last night I found myself in the pool during an Aqua Fit class, something I've never actually participated in myself, owing to the fact that these classes seem to be populated by bulbous middle aged or elderly women with various ailments which prevent them from using the gym or doing other forms of exercise including, come to think of it, actually swimming. To that end, I don't really fit the demographic; I also prefer moving horizontally through the water, as opposed to bobbing up and down in the same place for half an hour or wallowing around in the shallow end with a tube-shaped float for support. No doubt their legs were working overtime out of sight underwater, but I couldn't help thinking that it would be a much better exercise if they were all put in the deep end, where at least treading water would come into the equation. That'd catch the lazy ones out.

I finished my 30 lengths and assumed my viewing position in the spa pool. It was then that three young boys got out of the pool and walked past me. They were aged maybe 10-12 and already visibly overweight; man (or should it be boy) boobs back and front, paunches hanging over their board shorts. As I said before, I can't be too critical as they were at the pool, the three of them doing lengths in my lane, but I sat there looking and wondering if they got called names at school and how three boys could come to be so overweight, so young. The answer came wondering out of the changing rooms a minute later; an older, bigger, fatter, parental version of themselves.

Overweight adults, on the whole, make lifestyle choices which determine their size and health. Overweight kids, at that age, have a majority of their lifestyle choices made for them. It's a shame when the right ones come after they've put on the pounds.


nuttycow said...

I always feel really sorry for fat children who have fat parents. It's not like they can do a lot to keep thin if they've got such a rubbish influence around them :(

rosiewishes said...

Maybe they should stop being so anti-bullying in schools... like, pro-fat kid bullying! (Don't worry, I'm not entirely serious.)

I do feel sorry for fat kids though. There was a boy in my primary school whose breakfast was a cream cake his mother bought from the bakery every morning on the way to school. No child is going to say no to that!

China Blue said...

Yep, I feel for these kids as well. Why set your kids up for bullying? Everyone knows kids can be cruel.

I love aqua-aerobics, though. I used to do it regularly and had buns of steel :-)

Homer said...

I went for a job interview in a "good" area today, and I couldn't get over how healthy the kids looked compared to the poor little buggers at my school who are either lumbering lumps of lard or Dickensian waifs.

Fat kids won't get bullied in a decade, because they'll be the norm. It's a warped sort of consolation.

Reluctant Blogger said...

Yes, I agree. Adults make their own choices to a large degree about their weight but children do not have that luxury.

My son does swim training about 52 times a week and several of the boys who do that are what I would call fat. They are fast because they are buoyant and strong.

I don't like swimming but when I do go I can choose between two pools. One a private one - where the vast majority of the people are slim and toned and the other a public one where the vast majority are flabby.

These days I mostly judge someone's social class by their weight. Ooops that is a bit fattist isn't it? I'd better go.

London-Lass said...

But havent you heard? There's an `obesity epidemic' in the UK. Careful Jo, it could strike you down at any time ... ;)

Anonymous said...

When you have a dull moment - why can't cramerj post here?
If is something technical don't tell me I have decided I am too old to want to learn all that sort of stuff.
Or do i have an evil doppelganger?

theperpetualspiral said...

It is a pity that at that age the poor kids are doomed to the lifestyle and culinary habits of their parents.

As homer pointed out, in ten years time they will be the norm anyway, which is another sad indictment of society both today and in the future.

weenie said...

Fat kids won't get bullied in a decade, because they'll be the norm. That's the scary thing, and with more schools selling off playing fields for housing developments and not running school sports days as it's too 'competitive', we'll just be another fat nation.

I wish I was into swimming but it just aint my thing, which is a bugger cos I don't look too shabby in a swimsuit, if I may say so myself! ;-) For a small person, I'm like an iceberg-struck-Titanic when I'm in water. Guess I should practise more and get this swimming lark conquered.

Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

nutty - Exactly, probably the same parents who were complaining when Jamie Oliver was trying to give their kids healthy school dinners.

rosie - Cream cakes for breakfast? That's insane..

china - I have no doubt that aqua aerobics, when done properly, is a great exercise. I'm sure these women were just bobbing around though ;)

homer - that's really strange to think, but probably true. it's a scary thought.

reluctant - It's weird because often eating healthily is cheaper than buying crap...i.e fruit and veg is relatively cheap..

londonlass - it's ok, I've had my anti fat jabs.

cramerj / anon - nothing to do with me. Got no restrictions on comments...just moderation to weed out the spammers. Must be your end!

perpetual - It makes me both angry and sad when I see fat kids who look exactly like their parents.

weenie - swimming's great. I never used to be a fan, but recently I've got really in to it. I get so bored in the gym.


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