Sunday, 29 July 2012

Fat Woman gets her gun

Fat Woman is doing the Olympic Gold Challenge and has to get coaching in five new sports. Fat Woman chose the sports so she didn't spend hundreds of pounds to raise hundreds of pounds. The one sport Fat Woman had wanted to try for a while so was prepared to pay for was clay pigeon shooting.

Personal Trainer is apparently a crack shot and was very encouraging, even suggesting that he would go shooting with Fat Woman. Fat Woman can't vouch for Personal Trainer's clays but the pheasants he shot for her were excellently done. Swimming Coach also shoots and joined the gun club after Fat Woman took him there for a visit. Fat Woman had to sit down for ten minutes after being presented with the idea of Swimming Coach and Personal Trainer being competitive together with guns in their hands. 

Fat Woman now has two certificates from the Clay Pigeon Shooting Association showing that she has been taught general safety and "shotgun skills". There was a lot of time spent on safety and law and background, but Fat Woman also got to shoot some clays. Fat Woman likes shooting clays. Fat Woman is no natural but wasn't bad at the learning process. By the time Fat Woman had shot fifty cartridges she was able to hit both birds of a pair. One pair were both left to right and one pair was a left to right followed by a teal (flies straight up from the ground).

Fat Woman had an embarrassing moment when she shot at a broken clay. The rabbit (rolls along close to the ground) had broken when it bounced but Fat Woman hadn't noticed. It was a beautiful shot, but the senior coach was very gruff about it. It is super-against the rules, but noticing the state of a clay is still a bit beyond Fat Woman.

Fat Woman also has a nifty sew-on badge but she isn't quite sure where to put it. Out of context it would look a bit odd but at the gun club it would be a bit like a child's 50m swimming badge.

Fat Woman has a big bruise on her shoulder from her first shot when she wasn't holding the gun correctly and a tender patch from where the gun butt sat when she was holding the gun properly.

Fat Woman now falls into the gap between a total novice and a gun owner. Fat Woman has either to pay for supervised coaching so she gets the loan of a gun or persuade someone who owns a gun to come with her. Fat Woman needs to shoot a bit more before she buys and installs a gun safe, applies for a gun license and buys a gun.

Fat Woman thinks her keenness will depend on the social aspects. If Fat Woman can find people who want to shoot with her then she is more likely to carry on.

Fat Woman is also tempted by the secure feeling of owning a gun. Fat Woman loves John Wyndham books and has always wondered what would happen were Society to collapse and she had no access to a gun.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Fat Woman gets a holiday

Fat Woman gets a holiday - from Personal Trainer. Personal Trainer is going on holiday with Buddy for a week. Fat Woman was channelling her dear departed grandmother and gave Personal Trainer a 20 Euro note and told him to buy Buddy an ice-cream. Personal Trainer said he thought this was very sweet. Fat Woman feels guilty because what she really wants is a break from Personal Trainer, or rather the awkwardness which now sits between her and Personal Trainer. Both Fat Woman and Personal Trainer are being so damn careful with each other. Fat Woman enquired if there was anything Personal Trainer did or didn't want her to do in his absence, or anything he wanted her to consider when training with Swimming Coach. Personal Trainer swore up and down that anything Fat Woman wanted to do was absolutely fine with him. It was all a bit of a turn around from the previous week.

Fat Woman is hoping that a week away will do them both good and provide a reset. Fat Woman misses the easy intimacy they used to have. Fat Woman is fairly sure that it is she who is holding back. Fat Woman thinks that perhaps her availability and listening ear during workouts made it too easy for Personal Trainer. Fat Woman would be happy to give Personal Trainer any time he wants, but long in-depth personal conversations shouldn't happen during Fat Woman's workout. They used to, and Fat Woman enjoyed them and valued them, but Fat Woman wants to work harder now. This is lucky because on both Monday and today Personal Trainer made Fat Woman work really, really hard. 

Fat Woman doesn't know where the boundary should go when it comes to being close personal friends with your personal trainer. Fat Woman has always guarded against any suggestion of impropriety with Personal Trainer because right from the word go people would ask her if her trainer was good looking. Fat Woman would say: "He's very pretty,-" which was true, but allowed her to signal that Personal Trainer wasn't someone she could find attractive. When chatting with the young of the two female personal trainers Fat Woman was asked if she didn't find Personal Trainer attractive. Fat Woman snorted and said that she didn't, and that she wasn't sure who was the most grateful about that, herself or Personal Trainer!

Fat Woman just doesn't know how to be "friends" with someone nearly fifteen years younger who has almost nothing in common with her. Fat Woman adores Personal Trainer and enjoyed (enjoys?) their friendship, but cannot, will not, make any kind of sacrifice of her health to support a relationship. Fat Woman also feels that if you value someone as a personal friend then eventually you make an effort to move the relationship out of the workplace. If you don't then you have a "work friend" with whom you will probably stop associating with once you no longer share a workplace. Fat Woman isn't sure that Personal Trainer sees it quite like this.

Fat Woman would give anything to be able to undo what has been done. Anything except her progress in her health that is. 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Fat Woman gets stress-DOMS

When Fat Woman trained on Monday she was extremely stressed. Fat Woman felt no pain or strain, probably because of the cortisol flooding her system. Fat Woman was doing lat pull downs.

Personal Trainer: "Does it ache yet?"
Fat Woman: "No."
Personal trainer increases weights.
Personal Trainer: "What about now?"
Fat Woman: "No."

Personal trainer increases weights.
Personal Trainer: "What about now?"
Fat Woman: "No."

Personal trainer increases weights.
Personal Trainer: "What about now?"

Eventually Fat Woman stopped because her palms felt very sore from the bar. The entire session was just the same. Fat Woman was a machine.

Fat Woman is now waiting for DOMS to kick in and hurt her badly. Fat Woman suspects it's going to be a hard night.

Fat Woman - born to serve

Fat Woman had purchased a GroupOn voucher for tennis lessons. Fat Woman had bought a tennis racket and arrived promptly and properly prepared at the tennis courts. Fat Woman wasn't greeted, despite being expected, but eventually made herself known to the owner. Fat Woman was immediately sent "over there" to where a young man and a middle aged woman were playing tennis. The young man was the Tennis Coach and the middle aged woman had been playing for three years. Fat Woman felt quite bad that she was such a beginner when paired with someone more experienced. 

Tennis Coach was a little unprepared for how little Fat Woman knew. Tennis Coach appeared rather taken aback when Fat Woman pointed out that before they "just hit some balls" he might like to tell her how to hold the racket. 

In fact, it was a very good job that Fat Woman did actually remember playing tennis at school. Instead of the  basic here's-a-racquet, here's-a-ball training Fat Woman was expecting she was pitched into rallying straight away. Tennis Coach did give Fat Woman some good direction so she can now forehand rally and serve. Tennis Coach also said useful things such as "Take a break, get some water" which was very important as it was 28 degrees Celsius. Fat Woman is not used to exercising anywhere but in the cool air conditioned environment of the gym. Fat Woman was glad she brought two water bottles along. Fat Woman also found that she wasn't a big melting lump of lard. At no point in time was Fat Woman out of breath. Tennis Coach sent balls fairly neatly her way, but Fat Woman didn't mind running for them a little. 

Fat Woman's irritation is with the business owner. All GroupOns come with conditions and Fat Woman had written saying she was prepared to be flexible about times, so long as they were in the day. Fat Woman had asked the owner to confirm the course was going ahead before she went out and bought her tennis racket. The owner spent quite some time explaining to Fat Woman that if there aren't five people in the class then it costs him more and you're getting individual coaching which is much more expensive. Fat Woman is disinclined to hear this. It really isn't Fat Woman's problem. If Fat Woman had received individual coaching she may well have taken up the offer of more individual coaching. Fat Woman was promised eight hours of tennis coaching for the price of four (£24 instead of £48). Fat Woman isn't inclined to pay £12 for a group lesson for a sport in which she has no experience or for a class run by a company that can't even handle a GroupOn offer.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Fat Woman and the stressful morning

Recap: Fat Woman and Personal Trainer had a falling out. A big misunderstanding where both Personal Trainer and Fat Woman were convinced they were right and the other one was wrong. This culminated in a high drama conversation on Friday night.

Nominally, Personal Trainer and Fat Woman were okay. Certainly Personal Trainer turned up to train Fat Woman, which was a bonus. Fat Woman is not usually a nervous Nelly about training but was extremely stressed that morning. At three minutes to training Fat Woman was starting to stress about how stressed she was. Fat Woman's heart rate - usually a resting 60bpm - had hit 120bpm.

Fat Woman realised that if you have been on the rowing machine for fifteen minutes then of course your heart rate would go up.

Personal Trainer was pretty much his usual friendly self and put Fat Woman at ease fairly quickly. However, Fat Woman won't mind Personal Trainer's holiday next week in the slightest.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Fat Woman and Personal Trainer fall out

Fat Woman and Personal Trainer have had a falling out. At 10pm on Tuesday everything seemed fine. By 8pm on Friday the reactor had gone into meltdown.

There wasn't any shouting or swearing. Fat Woman doesn't do shouting or swearing. Fat Woman doesn't do drama either, but Personal Trainer is young and earnest and wasn't feeling able to hold on to the issues until Monday so a very intense conversation was held in the gym café with half a dozen people knowing that Something Was Going On.

Fat Woman won't divulge exactly what happened, but it was based on a fundamental misunderstanding. Fat Woman thought she was doing what Personal Trainer wanted. Personal Trainer felt he was being taken advantage of in quite a serious way. Fat Woman pointed out that this was unfair when she had offered option A and Personal Trainer had refused. Option B was what Personal Trainer wanted. Personal Trainer explained that he didn't think that was how Option B was working. Fat Woman was left thinking that you had to be a little clueless to think Option B worked like that, and it wasn't like she hadn't explained it three times. Fat Woman accepts that both she and Personal Trainer were saying things and the other one wasn't understanding what was being said.

Personal Trainer has a habit of conducting difficult conversation by perching on a chair to talk down to Fat Woman. Fat Woman is not sure whether to find it annoying or endearing that Personal Trainer feels he needs that advantage.

Fat Woman was not pleased to find that Personal Trainer had taken umbrage that Fat Woman had trained with Swimming Coach on Wednesday morning. Personal Trainer had been unable to do Fat Woman's session, which Fat Woman was fine with, but that was the only time she could train that day, or even in the next three days. Fat Woman feels slightly itchy at the idea that she has an obligation to tell Personal Trainer if she has professional relationships with other people. Fat Woman doesn't mind telling if Personal Trainer had requested at the beginning that would happen as a courtesy, but there is something that doesn't sit right with Fat Woman. Personal Trainer doesn't require Fat Woman to tell him when she is going to tennis, archery, shooting, hockey or tai chi coaching. Fat Woman pointed out to Personal Trainer that no one messes with his training, and that applies to her as well.

On Monday Personal Trainer said he felt that Swimming Coach set Fat Woman back when she trained with him. On Friday Personal Trainer told Fat Woman he had discussed referring he to Swimming Coach for when Personal Trainer changes gyms in the Autumn. Fat Woman felt her eyebrows wedge themselves in her hairline at that point. Fat Woman has known for a while that Personal Trainer is changing gyms. Fat Woman has been very supportive, even promising to come and train with Personal Trainer in his new gym. This would mean a 20 mile drive for Fat Woman rather than her current 4 mile drive. Fat Woman thinks that Personal Trainer is worth it.

Fat Woman has no idea where her relationship with Personal Trainer is going now. During the conversation Personal Trainer said he "thought we were friends". Fat Woman is happy to consider Personal Trainer a friend, and they have had some very intimate conversations, but Fat Woman has had experience of workplace friendships before. Fat Woman has found that if you are friends with someone solely within your workplace and you don't see them outside of work or call them socially then the friendship is not necessarily solid. Fat Woman has been burned before, particularly by men who are happy to have a friendship when it is supported by a framework such as mutual workplace but who won't put any effort in outside. Fat Woman is not saying that Personal Trainer is like that, but she had no expectations. 

Fat Woman is continuing to train with Personal Trainer. Fat Woman had never thought of discontinuing and was rather taken aback when Personal Trainer raised the possibility. It was then that Fat Woman realised how upset Personal Trainer was. Fat Woman pointed out that the two of them having a very public break up would not do Personal Trainer's business any good, and that she didn't feel that was necessary anyway. Fat Woman asked Personal Trainer if it was the case that he didn't want her to train with him at his next gym. Personal Trainer seemed reassured by Fat Woman's commitment to training with him and said that wasn't the case, and also that he had worried about the aftermath of the conversation.

Fat Woman feels that she is taking emotional responsibility for this interaction. Fat Woman is not sharing how some of the things said made her feel. Fat Woman actually feels misunderstood and that her fingers have been a little burned, although she is glad to hear that Personal Trainer does value - or possibly has valued - her friendship. It certainly comes across that Personal Trainer doesn't place much value on the work Fat Woman was doing for him.

Personal Trainer ended the conversation by hugging Fat Woman. Fat Woman was shocked. Fat Woman and Personal Trainer do not usually touch, let alone hug in front of a room full of people. However, such an unusual step gave Fat Woman hope that perhaps Personal Trainer would get over the events enough for them to resume a friendly training relationship. Personal Trainer is away for a week after training Fat Woman on Monday. Fat Woman could use a break right now.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Fat Woman and the embarrassing underwear

Fat Woman went to the osteopath. Fat Woman has some knee issues which require work.

Once at the osteopath's Fat Woman realised she had made a huge mistake. Instead of her harvest festival pants (all is safely gathered in) Fat Woman was wearing a thong.

There was no time for Fat Woman to go home and change, or even buy new panties. Fat Woman had to lie on the couch with dented modesty. Of course, this was the day the osteopath had a medical student in.

Fat Woman imagines the medical student telling the story of the hugely fat woman who wore a thong. Fat Woman feels bad for herself that there is any question of it being appropriate to wear a thong. Fat Woman likes pretty underwear as much as the next person. Fat Woman just likes to be more modest when displaying her underwear to others. Fat Woman feels that wearing a thong to the osteopath is a bit like saying "Hey! I have a good enough opinion of myself that I think I look attractive in these and I don't mind letting you see me." Fat Woman does not enjoy exhibitionism.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Fat Woman goes for Olympic Gold

Fat Woman has never been a fan of the word "Olympic". "Olympic" joins "gigantic", "huge", "titanic" and "mountainous" as words that a part of Fat Woman always expects someone to turn around and say to her: "That's you, that is*" No one has actually played that particular trick on Fat Woman for at least fifteen years now, but Fat Woman is still slightly wary about synonyms for "large". "Jumbo" is Fat Woman's least favourite because of the cross-referencing to elephants.

Combining a synonym for "large" with sport makes Fat Woman doubly nervous. Fat Woman has not had good experiences with sport. Fat Woman  has been excluded from several sports on account of her weight. Fat Woman wanted to ride but the local stables have never had shire horses. Fat Woman wanted to try open water swimming but could not find a wetsuit in her size. More pertinently, Fat Woman suffered extreme pain trying to keep up with fitter people. Fat Woman was invariably left gasping for breath with agonising pain shooting through her side (a "stitch") within a few minutes whilst friends were obviously annoyed at her pathetic inability to meet normal expectations and her need for rests.

Fat Woman's attention was caught by a newspaper article on something called the "Olympic Gold Challenge". The principle of the Olympic Gold Challenge is that you raise money for one of a selection of charities by trying a new sport. Fat Woman was inspired by the article and the claim that you could do just one sport. Fat Woman considered that she could cope with trying one new sport for the requisite three hours. Fat Woman signed herself up and arranged with Personal Trainer that she would attend his boxing class.

On finding more information about the challenge Fat Woman found that she would have to try not just one but five new sports. To just try one sport would require you to be on a team with four other people. Fat Woman had a moment of panic. Where could Fat Woman find four other people each willing to try a new sport on their own? Fat Woman finds it hard enough to coordinate four people who want to have dinner. Fat Woman was not comfortable asking other people to ask yet more people for money. Fat Woman takes a dim view of people who use charity sponsorship to fund their sporting activities, especially marathon runners.

After that initial  moment Fat Woman realised that there was nothing stopping her trying four more new sports. For the first time in her life Fat Woman felt able to take up a sporting challenge.

Fat Woman is now undertaking her own Olympic Gold Challenge. Fat Woman has chosen the following Olympic Sports - boxing, weight lifting, hockey, 50m freestyle and clay shooting. Fat Woman has chosen to do this in support of Cancer Research. Fat Woman chose a cancer research charity because she lost her mother to cancer a couple of years ago. Fat Woman's mother used to say "I'm so proud of you" whatever Fat Woman did. Fat Woman hopes her mother is still proud of her.

If you would like to support Fat Woman in her once-in-a-lifetime efforts you can donate on her Just Giving page at You can also see what Fat Woman really looks like. Fat Woman rather likes being anonymous and writing as a character, but thinks that perhaps this is a little bit more important than that.

*Interested readers can view the source of this phrase here:

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Fat Woman is anti-obesity

Fat Woman is not a very good "morbidly obese" person. Fat Woman does not feel shame or find herself disgusting. Even worse, Fat Woman does not believe that her fat will bring about her certain death. Fat Woman agrees that her eventually death is a given, but if fat was an actual cause of death she would have been dead before she was ten years old. Certainly Fat Woman wouldn't have made it past 30 years if fat was an actual cause of dying.

Fat Woman also takes issue with the word "obese". Fat Woman considers its definition "excessively fat or fleshy"  to be judgemental. What amount of flesh is excessive, and who decided that anyway? The root of the word "obese" is from the Latin "obesus". This means "to eat intensively" (ob- is "intensive", and "edere" is "to eat"). Fat Woman has done a fair amount of eating over the years but does not remember eating intensively for more than the occasional meal, or even for one extremely large meal that left her obese. Fat Woman ate  until she was full. On calculating her rate of weight gain over 25 years Fat Woman ate an excess of just 134 calories per day. Fat Woman does not consider an extra 135 calories each day to be  "eating intensively". 135 calories is a low fat Starbucks cappuccino.

Fat Woman has checked out the  BMI (Body Mass Index) tables. Fat Woman is 5 feet 4 and a half inches tall, although she will claim 5'5" for the purposes of using the BMI tables. The highest "healthy" BMI is 24. To have a BMI of 24 Fat Woman would need to weigh 145lb (10 stone 5lb)  or 65.9kg.

According to measurements of weight and  body fat composition the lean mass of Fat Woman's body is 70kg. If Fat Woman has a body fat percentage of 30%, the highest healthy percentage for a woman her age, her weight would be be 220lb. Fat Woman's BMI would be 36 and she would still be classed as "obese". 

Fat Woman thinks it is time to (1) stop pushing BMI as a measurement of body health and start pushing body fat composition instead and (2) find a better word than "obesity". 

Friday, 6 July 2012

The most important half a pound

Fat Woman has lost the most important half a pound. This half a pound is possibly even more important than the first half-pound Fat Woman lost on the way back down from her greatest weight. Losing this half a pound gave Fat Woman a thrill and a sense of achievement that no other loss has this year. This half-pound was special because it was half a pound less than Fat Woman's lowest weight as an adult, back in 2007.

Fat Woman is no longer trying to lose weight she has regained. Instead, Fat Woman is now losing this weight for the first time since putting it on at the age of 20. Fat Woman is feeling very encouraged and has a real sense that she is making good progress. 

Heck, Fat Woman is doing the happy dance and doesn't care who knows it.