14 - 20% - normal range for strong athletes
21 - 24% - normal range for regular exercisers
25 - 31% - ‘acceptable’
32 - 40% - obese
I’ve previously shared here that I have a freakishly high body fat content. Though this doesn’t bother me anymore, it does still confound me. Based on my level of physical activity, one would assume that I would at least be comfortably within the normal range for regular exercisers. However, one would also assume that God would never be mean enough to create a short, stocky, nearly blind 33-year old who still has bad acne, premature graying, obsessive behavior, terrible menstrual cramps and chronic constipation either. So it should not surprise anyone that on TWO separate body fat analysis tests this week, I clocked in at 29.5% body fat! This barely keeps me in the ‘acceptable’ range! So I don't know what's more inspiring- that a third of my body is still raw fat, or that I still fit size L & XL tops (thanks for those middle-linebacker shoulders, dad...).
But again, really- this does not traumatize me enough to make me run to the bathroom and throw up the one lettuce leaf and grape I ate for dinner. Particularly after what happened on Monday…
A trainer at my gym was using the caliper method to take my measurements. As he methodically pulled, tugged and pinched at my fat (really…a lovely feeling), I attemped to make small nervous chit chat by forewarning him that it would probably be a little high. He pretty much dismissed me with a wave of his hand and distractedly mumbled something along the lines of, “Aww, don’t worry about it- you’re in great shape, you’ll be fine…these things aren’t-- OH MY GOD! WHY IS IT SO HIGH?! I mean, you DO have A BIT OF FAT AND LOOSE SKIN in a few areas (thanks, a**hole…yell that louder so the rest of the gym can hear it too!), but 30%?!! I wouldn’t have guessed THAT much!” At this point he about threw his head in his hands and looked so distressed that I had to comfort him.
I reassured him that really, my high blubber content had no effect on my self esteem, that it was really not that much of a medical mystery (he's never seen what I can do to a large bag of tortilla chips) and that I was really just curious to see how accurate my body fat analysis machine was at home (dead on, apparently). And it's not like having a lot of blubber doesn't have it's high points! For instance, if I’m ever unfortunate enough to be on a cruise ship that goes down somewhere in Alaska, not only am I well insulated enough to remain comfortably toasty (I can frolick with seals!), but I’m also buoyant enough to float for weeks without having to exert any effort at all (treading water…what the hell is that?!). And if it takes even longer than that for the search crew to find me, I suppose I could always start gnawing away at my batwings (plenty of stored fat there!).
See? Now don't you wish you were a little tubbier now too? ;-)
Stuff you’ve gotta try:
- Lean Cuisine Panini sandwiches (Roy & I never fight, but we sure as hell fight over these)
- Lean Cuisine pizzas (esp. the cheese & spinach one!)
- Tyson Southwest-seasoned chicken breast strips (I eat ‘em straight outta the bag!)
- Burn Notice (best show I’ve seen in years)
- Survivor Man (another great show…plus you can learn 3 different ways of how to drink your own pee!)
- Clif Shot Bloks w/ caffeine (I'll NEVER eat another gel)
- Fresh bluberries (they're in season right now, and so damn good!)
- Whole Foods generic brand cheddar-flavored soy crisps (salty, low cal, packed with protein and damn tasty)