Like many, I packed on a few extra lbs in lockdown. I don’t own a set of scales in my house, so I didn’t really notice until WFH came to end, loungewear became but a distant memory and it was time to don my of ce attire, which…no longer t. Then, during my weekly trip to Choitrams, where I have frequented for the past couple of decades, my friend the shmonger, whom I regularly chat with and have known for years, smiled at me and giggled, “Madam, you got fat!”
A comment not at all fuelled by malice, but a comment, nonetheless, that shocked and slightly stung. I’ve always been pretty t; I workout at least ve times a week – and not because I have to, but because I want to -, but I knew my eating habits had become a bit lax and lazy over the past few months.
I decided to double down on my diet and take a bit more control over what I was eating. So I turned to The Den, probably the best gym in Dubai (I swear I’m not biased…) in Motor City that offers all sorts of fun* (*read: hard AF) exercise classes and a nutrition program that was set to make my six week challenge a bit more bearable. But there was something stopping me… Would my fellow curvy girls think I had turned my back on them? Would they think I was giving into societal pressures and no longer embracing my body because I was trying to change it?
Could I be body positive and still want to lose weight, or does that make me part of the problem?
Society’s relentless surveillance of female bodies has put women on a no-win journey in which weight gain is seen as a failure, and weight loss is…also seen as a failure. So where does it end? Why does being a size activist and wanting to drop a dress size have to be mutually exclusive? Are they binary? Are they are oxymoron?
“Weight as a metric does not correlate directly with how someone looks. You can be satis ed with your current physique and how you look, but having the desire to change is absolutely awesome,” says Michael Sole, nutritionist and founder of The Den. “Weight as a metric does not correlate directly
Want to see what a 2,000 calorie diet looks like IRL? Head over to YouTube/ CosmoMiddleEast to see this six week challenge in action
Two scrambles eggs (182 cal), half an avocado (120 cal), 50g/six cherry tomatoes (31), cup of tea (50 cal), skinny cappuccino (61). Total: 444 cal