Carry That Weight: Musicians, Fitness & Body Image
How did you do? If you shed even a few L-Bs, congratulations to you, friend. You're one out of every five who swore to do better and is maintaining that goal. The rest of us have already returned to the sofa with our chili cheese fries and super-size sodas.
Body image is a heavy matter, particularly for the young and uncertain among us, those who haven't yet come to the mature realization that what someone else thinks of you is far less important than what you think of yourself.
Today's pop singers have tried to share that message for these listeners, with songs like Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful" and Katy Perry's "Roar." But outside of a three-minute motivational song, what do musicians who truly know the struggle have to say about weight issues? Is there anything relevant or practical to find in their own personal weight challenges? Let's see:
In some respects, Clarkson has become the American idol of Americans with weight challenges. It's probably a position she never hoped for, but media and bloggers obsess over her weight fluctuations as if the numbers on her scale are the codes for launching Armageddon's nuclear attack.
I don't have Clarkson's cell digits, so I couldn't ask her, but I feel pretty sure there are times she wishes she were more fit and other times when she just doesn't give a damn. That's basically the reality for most anyone trying to lose weight, which makes her no different from us. Because she is so honest about it, she's endeared herself to many who empathize.
"When people talk about my weight, I'm like, 'You seem to have a problem with it; I don't. I'm fine!'" she once said in Self magazine. "My happy weight changes. Sometimes I eat more; sometimes I play more."
She's now married and expecting her first child, and spoke openly with E! in November about being concerned she'll struggle with losing her baby weight, taking her frank discourse on the subject to a whole new audience.
Fall Out Boy's front man lost 60 pounds a couple of years ago and has basically kept the weight off. When he spoke about his body transformation, he focused less on what it meant to look more fit than how it felt.
"There are these perceptions sometimes that are absolutely wrong, like the jolly fat man," he told the Associated Press. "I've come to the realization that no one is happy being really fat. You get there because you're not dealing with something. When you deal with stuff, you lose weight."
He also let people in on how he managed to drop all that weight.
"It's a sentence long: diet and exercise," Stump said. "I mean, it's three words! There's this whole industry around it, but it's no more complicated than that."
Maybe he danced, danced the pounds away. Personally, I think just saying Fall Out Boy's prolonged song titles aloud is a strenuous workout.
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