Today Sparkly was telling me about a weird conversation ey had with some of eir classmates from law school. The gist of it is that Sparkly is the only one of them who exercises for reasons other than weight loss/fear of being fat. The highlights, according to em:
“I feel so gross if I haven’t sweated enough”
“I overdosed on calories today, I need to exercise more.” “Well, we did walk like eight miles today.” “But that’s not REAL exercise.”
I’m glad I could reassure em that I find this kind of talk weird and scary too. Because even when it’s not explicitly about “I hate my body,” or “being fat is the worst possible thing,” that’s still the undertone. And it is scary, especially if you’re familiar with that feeling of The Worst Possible Thing and the fear that it can cause.
(Sparkly takes gymnastics classes, so both eir intentions in signing up and the structure of the class are very much focused on “learn this specific skill,” not on exercise for its own sake, and certainly not on weight loss. It very obviously has made em stronger, but that’s not even the main goal. The main goal is, now ey can do a backflip.)