A Culture of (De)Motivation

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I have decided quite recently to lead a healthier lifestyle. I have cut down on white rice, bread, cookies, and processed food such as canned tuna and corned beef. I have also stayed away from fast food. Basically, food-wise I am now going for fresh fruits and vegetables, even occasionally munching on lettuce leaves without any pre-made dressing. I have to get used to the bitter taste, though.

Moreover, I have gone back to my former exercise-filled lifestyle. I do cardio exercises for almost two hours. I also do yoga stretches, breathing exercises, and arnis drills. I also go on long jog/walks with friends. And it has been challenging and fun!

But sometimes, despite all the health benefits that I get from this kind of lifestyle, I feel deeply demotivated to continue on. The main reason for that is the constant mocking and teasing that I get whenever I pursue this kind of lifestyle. I sometimes feel like I’m on stage and people are heckling and bashing me when I eat a lettuce leaf or when I do jumping jacks. They tease me about dieting. They say that I’m only doing this to get thin. They say that I’m only doing this for my boyfriend. But WTF right? What is so wrong about leading a healthy lifestyle? What is so wrong about dieting or exercising? What is so wrong about doing away with rice?

Then I realize, there’s really nothing wrong about all of those things. What is wrong is this culture that makes fun of you when you’re doing something right. In this country, you get mocked if you aren’t in shape. At the same time, you get mocked when you try to get in shape. It is annoying, at the very least. It causes pressure on all sides. I mean, people expect you to be in shape, but if you try to, instead of motivating you, they make fun of you. WTF right? They just expect you to become thin the next day? It’s not funny.

There’s also something terribly wrong about humoring people, especially women, about their size and shape. It’s because it is, first and foremost, a health issue. A sensitive one. Why? On the one hand, all these beauty magazines praise and adore the stick-like figures of women, and this pressures women to get thin. On the other, there’s also this inspirational crap that tells you to love yourself no matter what size or shape you are, and this pressures women to just stick to what they have, no matter how unhealthy that is. So what form/shape should women take then?

Personally, I don’t care. I think society has no right to dictate what form/shape I should take. It is my body. I have decided not to live by my society’s schizophrenic standards and just stand by what I know is right for me. I don’t care if people ridicule me for doing jumping jacks or for eating carrot sticks. I don’t care if people laugh at me when I lose weight and get amazing abs, haha! I just know that I am doing something right for myself, instead of lazing around butting into other people’s business.

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