A few weeks ago I posted a photo on social media which apparently exposed my bulging tummy. How I hate tummies. Interestingly, my sweet Niece Whatsapped ‘hurling words’ at me demanding to know why an uncle should be gaining weight when everybody else is burning hours in the gym cutting weight! Well well well! That statement was hard to swallow. I did hear it sink deep in my stomach and up in my mind where it unleashed terror and threatened to ‘Sossion me’. I have never been more haunted by a simple statement. Gaining weight is no longer fashionable and worse still, some Machiavellian geeks seated somewhere will assume you are a lazy being. How harsh can it be! Well for the record, my tummy has nothing to do with me imbibing alcohol as one childhood friend alluded. This again left a bitter taste in my life. It’s not fair to always imagine all guys who grow tummies are alcoholics and take Nyama choma more often than they sip tea.
And by the way, I am at a crossroad. In catch 22. Why? Well, Kageshi (My publicly-known girlfriend) has been ‘over-feeding’ me so that, come 2016 when I will be visiting her parents’ home to pay dowry, I’ll look ‘presentable’. Hahaha. Yes in some parts of this country, you cannot afford to present a skinny fellow to your damn uncles. They will chase you away the Magarer-Langat way. You recall this lad, formerly of ODM. Come to think of yourself up in the air, with an idle crowd behind, waving tree branches and jeering at you all for not appearing ‘moneyed’ so to speak. (Why do people in upcountry have to harm trees when they hold demos; Are placards that expensive or rather not effective in these parts of the country. These are the same humans who’ll show up during Wangari Maathai’s Anniversary while in the background persist to maim her legacy.) Speaking of upcountry, mums residing in this areas do not mind when their sons grow ‘big’.
So where does this leave me? I weighed all the options and concluded I should restructure my weight instead. In fact, as we speak, I have embarked on doing exercises in my digs now that I can’t afford to frequent the gym. The last time I was there, 2 years ago, I used to spend more money on gym fees than I’d spend on my food budget. This didn’t make sense to me. I obliged to give up. I’m also an accountant you know. Doing exercises in the house is not simple either, though I dropped two kilograms last week but not before I got an injury on my feet. This was as a result of jogging 2 kilometers in the house. (Don’t get twisted, yani jogging for 20 minutes nonstop). If walls in my house would speak, they’d confirm the depth of my sighs and how sweaty I can be. Enough of Andrew!
Speaking of my niece, she’s hardly 53 kilograms (2kg for her blonde weave) and still insists on rigorously working out in the house. I know she will kill me for writing this, sorry hun! At times she skips meals to maintain her overrated flat tummy. How now? To me this is overzealousness. Many ladies are caught up in this madness of flat-tummies too. I know men admire such lasses, but when it takes skipping meals for a tummy! Hell no. You might have the tiniest waistline but still, have a pathetic lifestyle. Some are even taking pills to shed weight. That’s where the problem is. I’m not trying to throw shade at the whole idea of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It’s very noble. It significantly lowers your stress levels, combats diseases, boosts your energy levels and improves your longevity….bla bla bla. However, bragging of firm tummies on IG or pronounced muscles is neither here nor there.
We have hyped flat tummies at the very expense of healthy lifestyles. According to Women’s Health, an online women magazine, globally, sixty-two percent of women say the body part they’re self-conscious about is their belly. Nowadays, there has been a misconception that cutting your carbohydrates is tantamount to cutting weight. This is a generational lie. It’s wrong. Health pundits insist, cutting simple carbs may help reduce your weight but that does not necessarily suggest pushing complex carbs off your plate. Your body still needs vegetables, legumes and whole grains. Worse still, we are a society that has been misadvised against taking eggs. It’s true, eggs have a fair amount of cholesterol but they are good sources of protein, several B vitamins, choline, vitamin D, and vitamin E too. Extra caution is only limited to people with heart diseases or diabetes.
You know of these people who check on their ‘portions’ while they also count on the number of calories they’ve consumed in a day. Is this not a first world problem? We have totally been enslaved by all these crude gimmicks in this internet era. I have heard tales of corporate women whom ideally are quite learned, donning tummy belts. I call this, contemporary slavery? I hate to imagine a time when my wife will be jumping to get her tummy belt first thing after dashing out of the shower. This can be very defeating. It will remind me of war-time movies where you have to don certain paraphernalia to identify yourself. Woman, you are not in war, not unless with yourself. Besides, they follow a schedule of what one should consume in say three weeks and guarantee to lose a whole 30 kilograms. I’m also told of something called tummy tuck only affordable to the rich. This entails of plastic surgery in the abdomen in which fat and skin are removed and muscles tightened. This is to yield an illusion of a flat tummy. The lengths this generation travels to fit in or stand out!
New fads are being unleashed every single day promising ‘faster results’. But all they do is show our degree of laziness and general naivety. A healthy lifestyle will only be met by taking larger portions of natural foods, fruits, taking lots of water and more importantly regularly working out. This does not necessarily mean going to the gym. This ‘house’ is so overrated. In fact, a good number visit the gym just to brag about it. Simple exercises in your house coupled with more rounds of walking around the estate with your loved one(s) and maybe riding a bike preferably with your spouse can be very helpful. This is much wiser than gulping what we are fed via our TV screens. Drop the overzealousness. Accept not to be deluded. Don’t move with the wind, your kids might pay your price.
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