Lets Talk Gamer Health

There are a lot of really healthy gamers out there. People who exercise, eat well, are slim, and who have never had to deal with weight issues before.

I am not one of these people.

For the longest time I was ashamed of how I looked and I was reluctant to put any pictures of myself out there for the world to see. As time went on my views on this have shifted slightly because honestly, this is me. Not everyone is going to like me and those who judge me by my physical appearance are probably not people I wanted to be friends with anyway.

Now the point of this post. When I got pregnant I was already 235 pounds. During the pregnancy I gained to 247 at my highest. Since giving birth in September of last year, I’ve lost 48 pounds and for the first time in MANY years my scale actually reads below 200 pounds. I never want to see the scale that high again.

I went from class 3 obesity to class 1. If I lose another 19 pounds I’ll be ‘overweight’ and no longer obese. Every time you reduce your weight like this you cut down the percentages of health issues that affect you. It’s really hard. It’s even harder if you’ve dealt with weight issues before – our bodies work against us. We’re hungrier, we have more cravings. If you happen to be one of those lucky women who have PCOS (she says sarcastically) your body works even harder against you.

I have PCOS and with it comes easy weight gain and all the other not-so-fun stuff but I can’t let that be an excuse as to why I am this size.

I haven’t been doing a lot to lose weight, but the small changes I made have been adding up over time. I’m more active now (thank having a toddler for that) and make sure I go for some pretty intense walks during the week. I only drink tea (one a day) and water (lots a day). I don’t eat fast food, I don’t eat anything that I don’t make myself. If I’m hungry, I eat. I loosely calculate my calories, but I find I lose more weight when I don’t pay attention to the intake quite so much. I eat what I feel like eating – so long as I prepare it myself. I use containers for my meals so I have some form of portion control.

I also suffer from mental illness (depression, anxiety) and while it’s not as bad as it used to be, it’s still there because it’s a chemical imbalance in my brain and that means it will ALWAYS be there. It is a chemical imbalance that can be fine for months on end and then for absolutely no reason at all will trigger. The only thing that helps me in this case is medication to get the imbalance under control. I’ve tried therapy and various means of self medication, I’ve done the whole “think happy thoughts!” bit, I’ve tried exercise, “just get out more!” and I have a pretty good life but it doesn’t matter how good my life is, this mental illness doesn’t give a flying turtle about that stuff. So it takes medication and yes for a while that bugged me. I’ve lost friends over it, I’ve had to distance myself from family members, I’ve had to put myself first out of necessity which is something I find really difficult, it always seems so selfish. Turns out being selfish is alright in certain instances.

I want to have a long and healthy life for my son. I want to be around to see all of his important moments. I want so many things – and this is important because for a long time I didn’t want anything. I was convinced that this rendition of myself would be the one I would always be. Turns out that’s not true.

So for other gamers (or anyone, really) out there who want to change things around – you CAN do it. If you fail, that’s OK. I’ve failed a lot. I mean, a LOT, but you need to dust yourself off and just get back up and try something new. Keep trying, over and over and over until you find what works for you and until you’re happy with yourself. I finally feel like I’m getting there.

Slowly.

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1 Comment

  1. Good luck and stick with it! A Few years ago I went from 230 to 180 and haven’t looked back (I am also a 6′ male, just to give perspective). The habits you form end up forming you. I only drink black coffee, water, and herbal tea on a regular basis (I used to drink a lot of soda, cutting that out helped a LOT) and I do like beer and wine, but I don’t drink that everyday. I exercise 4-5 times a week now, usually early mornings, which means the rest of my life and day do not get in the way to give me an excuse. I just try to move and keep busy, and eat well.

    I have had a really bad 2 months. Since my friends got married, then vacations, and a couple illnessess, I really got off my routines. I haven’t put on much weight but find my body is more resilient, and I am actually craving exercise, which is a good thing.

    I too, fight depression but I do not take medication. I am mostly in hiding about it. Maybe the exercise is part of that process for me.

    Gaming culture and lifestyle doesn’t support fitness by what is “Expected”, and having a baby makes it even harder both on what happens to your body and the time constraints of raising a little one (mine is 12 now, so more free time!).

    Just wanted to leave a note saying this resonated with me, and best of luck sticking to it! Never feel bad if you take a step back, and just try to keep moving forward =)

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