I don’t make New Years resolutions. I used to, but I haven’t in a while, and I don’t plan to do so anytime soon. It was either a friend, a coworker, a boss…I don’t remember who, but someone told me along the road, “Look, you don’t need some moment of significance to change yourself. If there’s something about you that you don’t like, change it. It doesn’t have to be for the New Year.”
That sentiment stuck with me, and I’ve taken it with me through the last few years. I’m pretty comfortable with who I am, so when the calendar starts over, I like to see where the year takes me. One year, I did a lot of traveling. One year, I got incredibly close to my family. This year, I got fat.
It was a slow burn; something that I didn’t notice until I noticed it, and then I couldn’t stop noticing it. My friends started calling me questionable nicknames like “Hoss” or “Big Guy.” I became more okay with ordering tacos than taking the time to make my own dinner. I lost my breath while bending over to tie my shoes. All of these could be explained in a reasonable way, but the tipping point was when my mother asked me what my pants size was for something that was “totally not going to be a Christmas present.”
Fast forward to last weekend, when I was trying on the fresh new jeans that I desperately needed. Suddenly, the 32×30’s that I was so accustomed to weren’t so comforting. I had to suck in my gut to get them buttoned up, and even when I did, I was nervous to sit down. I mean, sure, I was buying way into this jogger trend, but things couldn’t have changed that much, right?
Wrong. I went and weighed myself that night. Lo and behold, I have put on roughly 20 pounds since moving to the city. It all made sense now. The judgmental looks I would get when I told our office manager that my shirt size was a medium? The button that popped off my Hawaiian shirt at the barbecue in August? The time my cousin told me that I looked exactly like my brother who has traditionally been around 40 pounds heavier than me? It’s because this whole time, I’ve been getting fat.
So, what now? Well, the way I see it, I have a couple of options. The first, I could fight it off. Take control of myself and actually focus on getting healthy. Eat better, start exercising, and really pay attention to how much I eat and drink when I go out on the weekends. I could spend the front end of 2017 roughing it out, trying to get back to my regular, semi-athletic state.
On the other hand, I could just steer into it. Own who I am. Be the fat guy. Buy a bunch of short sleeved dress shirts, learn a fat guy instrument like a ukulele or harmonica, eat a lot…can’t be that hard, right? Shit, some of the best people out there are fat. Chris Farley? John Belushi? The lead singer from Blues Traveler? All dope fat guys. People want to party with those guys. I want to party with those guys, and I like to think that they’d want to party with me too.
The fact is, as bad of a rep as being fat gets, I haven’t had any issues with it yet. 2017 will bring what it will, and if that includes me losing some weight, so be it. All I know is that I won’t be making any resolutions to do so..
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