Saturday, January 30, 2010

Failure is not experience.

There's been something that's been bothering me for quite a while.

As I've mentioned in my past couple of posts, I'm currently getting back into shape.

Now, I'm not going to mention any names, but there are a couple of people I know who have been on a diet or dieting for as long as I've known them. I'm talking decades here. You know the kind of person I'm talking about. There's probably someone (or multiple someones) in your life like this too.

Now here's the thing: My whole big, intricate plan to get back into shape has been "Don't eat crap and get regular exercise." I should also point out that it's actually working. I'm a good ten pounds lighter than I was a month ago and my resting heart rate is significantly slower.

However, every time this subject comes up, these particular people feel the need to show their extensive knowledge and tell me I'm doing just about everything wrong. One told me that the two slices of wheat toast and cup of unsweetened coffee I have for breakfast (versus the fried bacon and eggs and sugary coffee I used to have) is completely wrong, because that's carbs and I should be avoiding carbs all together.

You know, the same old pseudo-scientific complete and total bollocks spouted by people caught up in the latest weight loss miracle.

Now, here's the part that actually bothers me:

These people have tried every diet under the sun. They've been dieting for decades…and they somehow think that this makes them experts and their opinions worth listening to.

Now, in other fields of expertise, decades of 'experience' would make you an expert… but the kicker here is the only reason you diet for decades is because you're consistently failing to lose any weight.

Basically, it's not ten years of experience they have to share, it's ten years of failure.

I don't know about you, but if someone had been a salesman for ten years and had never managed to sell a damn thing, that's not someone I'd want to take advice on my sales pitch from.

Basically, I wouldn't take running advice from an athlete who'd never won a race, I wouldn't driving advice from someone who'd had hundreds of wrecks…so why in the blue hell would I want advice on diet and weight loss from someone who's been dieting for years and hasn't lost a pound?

What I don't get is how these people don't realize that the very fact they're still overweight automatically proves that they don't know what they're talking about.

The truth is that if you go up to someone who's in great shape and ask them how they stay so healthy, the answer is usually really simple: They get to the gym a few times a week and watch what they eat. Only the career dieters babble on about carbs and body chemistry.


MC Etcher said...

Well said! Also, most people don't realize that everything you eat is your diet - it's a commonly misused term.

Woman atop her Soapbox said...

It's a simple combination... more spinach, less cheese (ie more veggies and less fat) and move around more than sit and watch tv.

That combination works and has for generations.


QuietSeditionist said...

The Atkins diet works for quick bursts of weight loss. So if you want to look good in a bathing suit in a month or something, then go for that and you can (unhealthily) shed a bunch of pounds in a short time. Unfortunately, this weight loss is not sustainable. IE - you will either gain back the weight, switch to a diet like you are choosing to follow now, or continue on the Atkins diet and keel over from heart disease.