Anything that encourages larger and larger numbers of people to become healthier is usually considered beneficial. After all, the more people feel comfortable in a gym the more people will come in, and thus even more might establish healthier habits…. at least in theory. In the name of patron comfort gyms have been formed which are for women only, while others have even have noise policies, and even extend to bandannas. Following the trend a new gym in Canada was formed which has decided that it will not allow members who are considered too thin to join their numbers, since it was decided that thin people’s presence would “…will bring down morale”.
I once attended a class called addiction and obsessive compulsive disorders (please be patient I will get to the point!) while completing my undergraduate education. It was such an interesting class, and one of my most memorable experiences was the AA presentation… The AA members who came to talk to us said to us that alcohol was not the problem it was the solution to their problem. I do NOT wish to stereotype anyone, but in my experience my use of food has been mostly self medicating… a way to escape my bad feelings, cope with anxiety, a way to avoid confronting my fears.
Even after losing a significant amount of weight, there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t struggle with overeating and work out avoidance as a way to cope with feelings or situations. That is the whole reason I am here blogging about establishing healthier habits and attitudes, so that I have to think and confront my own demons. While I think that this gym is a wonderful idea, it does one thing that I don’t agree with… it removes the real world stresses of people, both good and bad… and in its place a bubble of false security. I have never heard of a therapeutic strategy for overcoming a fear or anxiety that incorporated avoidance. Rather than ensconce would be attendees of the body exchange would be better served by going to a regular gym, where men and women together work out side by side…. where policies of support, tolerance, and respect are emphasized (gyms like that do exist!) rather than perpetuating of blaming, excuse making, and procrastination that can be said to be due to fear. Put down your fear and experiment, never give up trying to find a better way to be a healthier you! You will see that you are not alone!