Friday, December 28, 2012

Getting some weight off my shoulders

When I was a not so little girl, I grew up thinking that I was fat. For most of my high school years, I was 160cm, and 53kg. That's a BMI of 20.7 people (nowadays, even BMIs are not an accurate depiction of health). Back in primary school though, we had to go for physicals every year, and on the back of our physical examination book was a little chart which told you what ideal weight you should be at. An adult female of 160cm should weigh 46kg, a number which has stuck in my mind for many, many years.

It's hard being the fatter kid in Asia. Shopping for clothes was never flattering... I always had to shop for Large and Extra Large sizes. At most boutiques, they would only ever have one or two sizes for clothing, and most would not fit me. This was in the 90s - I do believe, and hope, that times are different now.

Moving to Australia was probably one of the best things to happen for my self esteem. For one, I was a size 6, before vanity sizing was even around! I was also away from some people who would constantly remind me of how "large" I was. In college, when my depression hit hard, one of my few joys was that my weight had plummeted to 48kg, only 2kg from my ideal weight!

It's scary, but true. I was a product of a weight-obsessed society. It's the same society that led to this girl losing 8kg to become 38kg, because at 46kg, she too, felt like the fatter girl in Asia. (See, it's not just me!)

A few things have changed for me this year. I'm not sure if it's because I'm just too old to care about body image issues, or if I really am older, but wiser, or if it came about from reading Nia Shanks' post. I began building up my fitness this year, initially wanting to lose weight. I mean, I was 50kg... that's 4kg overweight in my mind! At the start, I did lose some weight, but then the weight piling began, and the kilos weren't coming off. The last time I weighed myself, I was 54kg.

But you know what? I really don't care. I have never felt stronger, faster, fitter, and I like the muscle definition that I have going. I may be heavier, but I am leaner. I can do amazing physical things, and most importantly, I feel great.

Want to know why you shouldn't just weigh yourself?

Read the whole article on Tribesports

That's right. The TL;DR of that article is that weight is just a number, it can't tell you how awesome you are.

Clothes size-wise... I'm now a size 8, because my shoulders and chest are too built to squeeze into a size 6.
And guess what? I'm actually pretty proud of that.


  1. Great post - I think we live in a society that is so focused on looks / weight, its quite sad when you think about it. The weighing scale doesn't provide any indication of how fit and healthy you are - I know many girls who are 50kg and below but do not exercise and/or eat clean.

    I too also used to aim for a specific "weight" but now, I am focused on being as healthy and fit as I can be. And ultimately, I know this will make me a happier person :)

    1. I know, I think I'm at a point where I eat well and exercise just because I know it's better for me, rather than to lose weight.

      I used to be so envious of girls who were just skinny. Now, I know better :)

  2. 46kg is very, very light for someone who is 160cm. Since they were the charts used in primary school, perhaps that was the weight for someone 160cm tall who was primary-school aged. I cannot believe it is the ideal weight for a 160cm adult. Perhaps a 160cm 12 year old.

    I am 50kg and 150cm tall and considered slim, so I would question that scale.

    1. Maybe! Or it could just be a scale that had been modified for Asian bodies. When we learnt about BMIs, healthy BMI ranges were completely different to what healthy Western BMIs are today.

      My sister is about your height and weight, I agree its definitely slim :)