Right there, that’s the title of my new healthy lifestyle book. I am somewhat conflicted here because I cannot comprehend how the almost infinite heft of diet books seems to make no bloody difference to the weight of the people reading them. And yet, I still feel there is room for one more written in the style of blunt northerner and focussing on some simple truths.
Here are my draft chapter headings, feel free to help me out with suggestive edits. I’ll feel free to ignore them of course.
1. Eat less, exercise more. Inspired by looking out of the office window this lunchtime. The leafy square was divided about 90/10 in favour of those who looked as if the last meal they missed was when their mum ran out of milk. The exercise regime of these individuals seemed to revolve around warm up cigarettes, reps of mobile phone texting, and finishing up on a big session of sugary cakes.
2. It really isn’t glandular. No it isn’t. You can pretend you have big bones, over-active glands or a sloth like metabolism. But honestly, it’s more the fact that you spend 20 minutes checking calorific values on nasty gas packed sandwiches, and then taking the lift to the second floor.
3. Being round isn’t a cool look. Which seems to be a bloke thing – the other day I saw two fellas comparing beer bellies, reaching forward to give them an affectionate pat “All paid for mate...” was the smug refrain. You can tell it’s nearly summer because the world is full of FPIO*, and most of them are men.
4. Dieting is dumb. It Just is. I do love all those adverts for slimming products modelled by lovely looking women** who have absolutely no body image issues or whatever marketing euphemism hides “looking like a sack of spuds” behind some soothing words. Creeping obesity is simply saying that adding 9000 calories a month is a shit load easier than shedding them.
But crash dieting just eats muscle fat and when the weight loss plateaus – as it absolutely will once that’s gone – everyone just gets depressed and eats again. And the body thinks “bloody hell, food, I tell you what I’ll store that in my fat reserves.” Or arse as the less medically inclined may think of it.
5. Stop kidding yourselves. If you’re fat and happy, then I’m happy for you too. If you’re whinging that your diet isn’t working/the food is shit/exercise is boring/etc/etc, then accept you’re going to be a human beach ball, or do something about it. And no, whining doesn’t count.
It’s going to be a best seller. Retirement beckons I think.
I know this is probably fatist, and I’ve done it before. But I don’t care, because I still find it bloody odd that we have a chunk of health system built to prolong a bloody miserable life, rather than fix the problem before wheelchairs are involved.
And I’m writing this post BBQ, drinking beer but I nearly bloody killed myself commuting, and spent a day eating stuff that was nutritionally outstanding, but digestively dull. So let me leave you with this; the local rag was showcasing a slightly less fat bastard than a year before, who’d been the only bloke in his WeightWatchers group.
When asked what the greatest benefit of losing four stone and becoming both more active and less of a hospital statistic, he declared “getting in and out of the car is easier”. Than what? Walking a mile? Getting on a bike? It’s like escalators in Gyms’ – when did we lose the link between feeling better and actually being better?
I know I’m a grumpy bugger with a myopic view of stuff no one else cares about, but I do wonder sometimes if the world went mad one day, and nobody bothered to tell me.
* Fat People In Oakleys.
** And it generally is, so testing point 3).