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Moderately Thin or Absolutely Thin?

By Teresa Cheong, Lifebridges Communications. The writer muses on her current keep fit craze and the modern obsession with being thin.

Left jab, right jab, elbow, right leg kick!” Ray, the kickboxing instructor, yelled at the microphone, but my concentration was already lost somewhere between keeping pace with the energetic punches and gravity-defying kicks, and stuffing pieces of crumpled tissue into my ears to shut out the blaring techno music. 

Twenty minutes into the routine, my mind and body separated. When my mind sent a signal for a double sidekick on the right, I swung the right leg to the front. When it was a “double left jab and single right jab,” I did the reverse. As for my punches and kicks, they flailed miserably in all directions. Three times, I had to stop in the middle of the routine to catch my breath on the pretext of taking a sip of water. But just ten years ago, two-hour aerobic workouts twice a week was well within my lung power.  It got harder every year after my late 20s.

From the corner of my eyes, I spied on my fellow kick boxers, and tried to suss out those who noticed my faltering steps or the ridiculous white pieces of tissue sticking out from my ears. But nobody looked in my direction. I looked again and saw mostly fresh intense young faces with reed thin, waif-like figures kickboxing away in their tiny cami tops and stretched fitness pants.

As a very late baby boomer,  I have never felt old until of late.  That was when the weight suddenly piled up.  After maintaining a respectable 56 kg for a 1.6 m frame throughout my 30s, the weight started to spiral out of control as I entered the next league – the big 4-0.

Now, out of breath and out of synch, I felt venerable among these high-kicking Gen-Yers.  While ‘growing thin’ is a boon to Gen-Yers., ‘growing the midriff’ is the bane of mid-lifers.

This modern obsession with youth, weight and shape made me ponder the meaning of life. Actually, it was not quite serious as that. I ponder instead how much thinness there is to crave for.  Say, on a Likert scale of one to five, is being thin better than moderately thin, very thin or absolutely very thin? Is being overweight worse off than slightly overweight, moderately overweight, very overweight or absolutely obese? Applying the same scale, can we say a person who is 25 years old is more useful or valuable than one who is 30, 40, 50 or 70?

Of course, these are silly, nonsensical questions.  I have made them all up to show how ridiculous the modern obsession for staying youthful and fashionably thin is.

So seriously, how is life to be lived?

Definitely, with more punch (and kicks).


Click on the link below and then, click on 'video' to watch a clip on basic kickboxing moves.

Fat Burning Kickboxing Workout for Dummies

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Teresa Cheong is a professional web writer and freelance copywriter. She takes pride in creating quality web content that engages and sells. If you need web writing service, contact her here.