Designing the Doll: bikini, figure and body-building

As a fat, middle-aged woman who struggled with bulimia for many years and the never ending cycle of yo-yo dieting for many more, I am grateful for this post. I have chronic pain issues and I cannot train obsessively the way I did when I was in my twenties. I would often be at the gym for five hours at a time, neglecting my family, all in pursuit of the “perfect body.” I never achieved it.
Now I don’t get on scales. I work out in the pool because it works with my body as it is rather than causing worse damage to an already compromised spine.
When people say that they want others to lose weight “for their health,” it’s bullshit. Rather, they want everyone to look like a glossy magazine image.



The real living dolls.

Not so long ago, female bodybuilding and competing was the preserve of a minority. Then the Bikini category was added, and aided by the explosion of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, blogs.. previous elitist language such as ‘eating clean’, ‘carb depletion’ have become social media favourites. It seems every other bikini-clad twenty-something on Facebook and Twitter will speak of protein shakes, clean-eating, getting ripped and its spiritually uplifting effects. Partnered with pseudo-psychology (you know I love it) and motivational quotes, women are told they must push harder, the non-believers are jealous haters, and you must never be happy with the body you are given.

A size 8 body is not good enough. The body must show signs of work, of being trained. There are no excuses! The natural size 8 body is guilty of having ‘skinny fat’. The female body in its natural state is not good…

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The 6 Most Shockingly Irresponsible “Fitspiration” Photos

There is a difference between trying to be your best and trying to live up to an impossible standard.
Sadly, many lives are damaged or even destroyed by the impossible standard. Hence the increase of steroid use in athletes, including at the high school level. Hence the increase of dangerous weight loss surgery and the use of questionable methods to achieve the “perfect” body.
It is not about getting healthy, it’s about looking a certain way. These tactics are not healthy.


The Reembody blog, up to this point, has been a thoughtful exploration of human movement, a subject about which I am extremely passionate.

Today, however, I’m mad and I’m going to tell you why.

I have been planning a blog post for a while on fitness misinformation, and it was originally going to be the same kind of thoughtful deconstruction found in my other installments. But then I read this and it was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever found in my newsfeed: so beautiful, in fact, that the rest of the health and fitness propaganda floating around Facebook like turds in a pool started to really, really piss me off.

So thoughtful deconstruction has been postponed for another day. Instead, we’re going to take a good look at a few of those turds and get pissed off together because, when someone preys upon your insecurities in an effort…

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Why I Forgive Holley Mangold

I forgive Holley. I also forgive Jennifer Hudson, Carrie Fisher, Kirstie Alley, and anyone else who has ever succumbed to the pressure to attempt to achieve the socially acceptable body type at any cost.
The truth is, and I may catch some fire for this, if I found a way to magically make myself have a socially acceptable body, I would.
To this day I look in the mirror and loathe what I see, though I try not to. To this day, I sometimes consider having weight loss surgery, even though I know that many times it turns out bad. To this day, I believe myself to be unlovable as I am, and I believe that I always will be unlovable unless I’m able to be thin.
Of course, I also thought this when I weighed 130 pounds…when I weighed 120 pounds…when I weighed 110 pounds.
Body hate is so conditioned in modern society that even being an award winning Olympic athlete can’t stop it.
I’m really sorry that Holley got sucked into The Biggest Dickweed, of all things. I hope she learns that she doesn’t have to be thin to be a winner. It may be a long, hard road for her.

Fierce, Freethinking Fatties

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Trigger warning: Discussion of the desire to be thin and what it takes to get there.

A few things happened over the last couple of weeks that have me thinking about Body Acceptance even more than I usually do. Which is a lot.

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