September 24, 2007
Often people who have blogs about losing weight post Progress Photos. These can be so inspiring, especially when progress is actually being made! Katie over at Sister Skinny recently posted one (she looks great) and it got Crabby thinking a little more about them.
Cranky Fitness has often been categorized as a "weight loss blog," though it isn't quite. We sure talk a lot about weight loss, though, as this is a health blog and obesity is a major health issue. And all of us are surrounded by temptations that if indulged in, would lead to major weight gain, which at least for Crabby, would not be a healthy thing at all.
However, this assumption that Cranky Fitness is primarily a weight loss blog sometimes makes Crabby feel a bit guilty, because she is not in the midst of an ambitious weight loss quest herself. She doesn't have a particularly heroic story to tell, either, and the pictures above are the best readers are going to get of her "before" and "after." She reached what she considers a healthy weight years ago. She has a reasonably cooperative metabolism, though not an unusually fast one. She's always been fairly vigilant about Health and Fitness, so she's never been more than about 25 lbs out of range. Crabby's battles are more about not cupcaking and cheeseburgering her way back into an unhealthy lifestyle (and, not coincidentally, a larger waistline). But still, even that 25 lbs felt like a substantial challenge. She can totally relate to weight loss struggles.
And she loves viewing "before" and "after" photos.
In fact, while she is probably the sole human on earth who doesn't tune into the Biggest Loser on a regular basis, she likes to catch the final episode: tons and tons of "before" and "after" footage. Tears and pride and congratulations all around! It makes her very happy to see people who have worked hard be rewarded with success.
Of course, sometimes "before" and "after" is only part of the story. Often there is "before," and "after, and then back to "before," and perhaps another "after," and so on. This is not as inspiring. However, it is all too human and real and completely understandable. Especially if extraordinary effort and near-starvation went into creating "after."
One great thing about weight loss blogs is that these photos come with a context. You can read what the person went through, how they approach things, and discover how sensibly or not "after" was obtained. You hear the "voice" of the successful person and it tells you so much more than the same sort of photos in a magazine ad would.
Now when you come across "afters" in certain blogs you just get a good feeling about them. No one can ever know for sure--but you just sense this person is going to stay an "after," whatever temporary obstacles might come along.
There of course are many of these out there. Crabby is only going to name two as examples: Mousaroo's blog is one, with its cheerful header photo and funny posts and of course, the marvelous Marie at the helm. And the other is one a popular blog Crabby found only recently (via Mary's Great Guest Post and the BlogHer ads). Pasta Queen at Half of Me not only has an awesome blog, but check out her Progress Photos page. They document Amazing Progress, sure, but you can even make them rotate! Does it say something bizarre about Crabby that she sat there for a good five minutes spinning a bunch of the pictures around? She hopes poor Pasta Queen is not too dizzy.
Crabby knows many of her readers are on heroic weight loss quests of their own. She is filled with admiration for you all. Eating healthy food in reasonable portions and getting enough exercise are all things she believes in, even though she does have those nasty cupcakes taunting you from the top of the page. Perhaps some day she will replace them with something less evil.
Because she truly hopes all of you trying to lose weight end up with the "After" pictures you deserve.
So what do you all think about "Befores" and "Afters?" Or about Weight Loss or Weight Loss blogs generally? Are there any you find particularly inspiring? Or, as usual, feel free to share your thoughts about any ol' thing on your minds.