I Finally Decided To Show The World My ‘Man Boobs.’ Here’s How It Changed My Life.

Discussion in 'Gym and Workouts' started by OckyDub, Apr 28, 2019.

  1. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
    Site Founder The 10000 Daps Club

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Messages:
    6,586
    Daps Received:
    14,917
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    The planet of Memory Corpses
    Orientation:
    Homosexual
    Dating:
    Married
    [​IMG]

    I realized I was fat in the first grade. My teacher asked the class to share what we loved most. While my classmates shared their love for their parents, pets, favorite toys or siblings, I wanted to profess something different. I had a crush on the prettiest girl in class, and I had found the courage to let her and others know it.

    I walked to the front of the classroom with my head held high.

    “I love Dee because she is the prettiest and smartest girl in class.”

    “Eww!” Dee responded. “I don’t like you! You’re fat, and your titties are bigger than mine!”

    The class erupted with laughter; my eyes filled with tears. My classmates called me “titty boy” as I walked back to my desk, arms folded over my chest and head dangled in shame and defeat. My teacher quickly gained control of the class, but the damage was already done. That day, I realized I was different. That day changed my life and created a monster ― one that despised and hated his body for the way it looked.

    Day-to-day life as a fat person is about overcompensating or camouflaging yourself so that you don’t stand out as the fattest person in the room. I avoided going swimming simply to avoid taking off my shirt in front of anyone. Clothes and shoes became my talking points. And when that didn’t work, I became the class clown, making people laugh — sometimes at my own expense — to deflect conversations or haggling from others about my weight and breasts.

    And since learning that I have man boobs, clinically known as gynecomastia, I’ve had to fight bullies — literally — to protect myself.

    Others’ perceptions of me damaged my psyche. I believed that being fat meant I was worthless. I felt like my thoughts, feelings and emotions were invalid ― I was fat, and it was my fault.

    Like countless people, I had a tumultuous affair with my weight, body image and attempts at weight loss. Despite finding success with weight loss at certain points of my life, I was left with man boobs. I still viewed myself as a failure; my extreme weight-loss efforts didn’t translate to what I saw in the mirror. After all, my new body wasn’t one worthy of a Men’s Health cover.

    I spiraled out of control, losing the glimmer of confidence I was building. I gained weight, repeating the vicious cycle again. Each time I repeated this process, I didn’t feel good enough for society — or even myself.

    My turning point surfaced during a doctor’s visit. In 2012, I found myself sitting in a doctor’s office weighing nearly 400 pounds, anxiously awaiting my doctor’s prognosis regarding a hip injury. He groaned.

    “Mr. Evans, I know why you’re in pain. You’re fat. You need to start walking and lose weight, or you’re going to die.”

    Absorbing my doctor’s response, feeling angry and embarrassed that he had called me fat, I responded, “Screw walking. I’ll run a marathon.”

    My doctor chuckled. “That’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard in all my years practicing medicine.”

    For a moment, I revisited first grade. I’d been told I was fat all my life. Now this doctor, a medical professional, had the audacity to laugh at me, exclaiming that running a marathon at my current weight was impossible. His response pissed me off. It pushed me to purchase some running shoes, train for a marathon and birth my blog, 300 Pounds and Running.

    When I started running, I felt uncomfortable in my skin. Negative thoughts flooded my mind as my body moved on the pavement. I had this overwhelming feeling that people were silently judging me and giving me weird looks as my body shuffled through runs. Imposter syndrome shadowed my thoughts when someone ran faster on the treadmill next to me or when I felt like I was moving like a lumbering fool. I felt like I didn’t belong to this elite club, even though I knew it was accessible to everyone.

    It wasn’t until after I ran my first race that my self-confidence started to form. Something about the race environment awakened parts of me I didn’t know existed. When I crossed the finish line, I was euphoric with empowerment. I felt unstoppable, finally acknowledging my body’s strength. This feeling couldn’t be reduced by any negative comment, so I completed more races, proving to myself that I could do anything, regardless of my size.

    The first year after encountering that doctor, I lost nearly 100 pounds and completed over 15 races, including a marathon in my hometown of Detroit. I became the before and after picture that everyone wanted.

    With the exception of my man boobs.

    The dual relationship with my body still existed. In some ways, I was proud of my physical performance, but I still hated my reflection.

    In 2014, I found myself battling a new hurdle. I had two car accidents that sidelined me for a couple of years, and I gained back every pound — plus more. When I was cleared to run again, I was urged to begin another weight-loss journey. But the pressure from my peers bothered me much more this time. In the past, weight loss had been my primary source of inspiration, but this time, I wanted to focus more on my newfound love ― running.

    [​IMG]

    Focusing on weight loss put me in a vicious cycle and a horrible headspace. But when I solely focused on being the best athlete I could be, everything changed. As I ran more races, I felt more powerful in my skin, exuding confidence in myself and my body. Each time I crossed the finish line, I felt unstoppable.

    This resolve didn’t sit well with my friends, family or some of the followers of my blog who knew me prior to my injury. From every direction, I was instructed to lose weight. I realized that larger bodies are forced into a box. When fat bodies are active, people assume they are being active only to lose weight. When people discover those fat bodies are not trying to lose weight but are simply trying to be active, they shame those fat bodies for not fitting societal norms.

    Even with the rise of the women-driven body positivity (BoPo) movement, my concerns as a man were still not covered. I felt left out of the conversation. Traditional American masculinity does not permit men to admit their physiques are less than ideal. I wondered what would happen if men felt safe enough to be open about their insecurities without fear of violating the unspoken rules of masculinity. Would we do better at accepting our bodies’ flaws? By doing so, could we get closer to acknowledging the many ways to be healthy?

    Frankly, I didn’t have the answers to these questions. My only solution was to try this approach for myself. What could I lose? All my life, I tried to overcompensate and camouflage my man boobs, yet I was still subject to harassment. What if, for a change, I celebrated my body instead of despising it?

    So I took off my shirt, grabbed my phone and snapped a selfie. Without thinking twice, I posted the picture on Instagram. I would celebrate what my body could do.

    While most of the comments were positive rather than negative, I wasn’t searching for anyone’s validation. Having enough courage to post a topless picture on Instagram was good enough for me.

    Many men reached out to share their stories of feeling inadequate. They told me they wouldn’t have the courage to do to the same as I did.

    Gathering inspiration from ESPN’s “The Body Issue,” I took my topless photos to the next level. While I loved seeing the empowering visuals of athletes’ bodies, I didn’t see an image that represented me: a fat runner. Not to discredit amazing athletes like Prince Fielder and Vince Wilfork, but I didn’t see anything outside of the box.

    Sports like football and even baseball celebrate larger male bodies but running is not one of those sports. As a fat marathoner, I wanted an outlet to show there’s no one form a marathoner should take. So I did a nude photo shoot with Shoog McDaniel, a BoPo photographer who pushes the boundaries of the fat acceptance and BoPo movement through art. I also worked with renowned body painter and artist Trina Merry.

    Outside of celebrating my man boobs with such grandeur, I felt like it was dynamic to show vulnerability from a straight male perspective. I was given an opportunity to embrace layers of myself by transforming my body into art and allowing it to be free. Metaphorically, I crossed another finish line for the first time.

    To some, this may not be much. To others, perhaps it may be too much. I took a risk by exposing myself ― a man who spent his whole life camouflaging himself. Posing nude was necessary; it stripped away all of the toxic masculinity bullshit of how a man should look — and act.

    I found healing through art. Through these forms of expression — running and artistic nudes — I have come no longer to see my body as something disgusting but, instead, as something beautiful and strong. I am just doing my thing, without restriction.

    When I shared my pictures from my photo shoots on Instagram, I received a bit of hate, but I also received love. The fat-shamers said I was promoting obesity and that my body was disgusting. Some people sent me DMs and emails; others resorted to creating threads on forums discussing their hatred for fat people. With my newfound confidence, I’m unbothered by people who sit behind a keyboard, spewing hate about someone they don’t know and will never meet.

    Let’s face it: Men don’t face the same unrealistic expectations as women, but we still feel pressure to obtain the perfect body. What was the last superhero movie you saw with a plus-size lead? Men’s publications still focus mainly on hypermasculine things like hard bodies, washboard abs and sex. These images of masculinity, coupled with traditional values of stoicism and self-reliance, are causing a growth in eating disorders and body dysmorphia in young men.

    I just want to see men celebrate their bodies and the great things they can do. This 354-pound body can run marathons, complete Tough Mudders and do anything else I put my mind to. I probably won’t grace the cover of Men’s Health or ESPN’s “The Body Issue.” That’s fine by me. I take joy in celebrating myself.

    However, I don’t feel like there are safe spaces for men to celebrate themselves. Men need space to eliminate the bullshit of toxic masculinity around like-minded individuals, without fear of repercussion from being that vulnerable. So, what can we do to start creating a space like this for men?

    First, men, believe you are worthy. Period. Sometimes, you just need someone to affirm the things that are going on with you. Let me be first to say it. You. Are. Worthy. You belong!

    Second, focus on what your body can do, instead of what it looks like. I am living proof that you can run a marathon weighing over 300 pounds. That’s something to celebrate, even if the media won’t celebrate with me. And even if you cannot fathom running a marathon, maybe your celebration comes in the form of a 5K or a mile. Maybe even cycling, weightlifting or hiking. Slow progress is still progress.

    Remind yourself that media-portrayed body images aren’t realistic images of or for everyone. Unfortunately, the media showcases unrealistic standards and misrepresents the average physique — and that includes male bodies. It’s OK to challenge the pictures you see surfacing on your screen. Confidence should be built in you and your efforts, not in the opinions of others.

    Above all, it’s OK to be vulnerable. It doesn’t endanger your masculinity. Sharing our experiences, both negative and positive, is the first step to healing and growth. It takes a different kind of man to be vulnerable. Vulnerability is just another form of strength.

    Nothing is wrong with showcasing weight-loss journeys or finding joy in your before and after pictures; they might inspire someone to get off the couch. But when they are all you promote and when your content lacks diversity, you are contributing to the problem.

    Let’s do better.

    Let’s work to create spaces that celebrate men for who they are ― man boobs and all.

    Martinus Evans is a marathon runner, author, run coach and award-winning speaker who helps plus-size individuals be active without the pressure of weight loss. He is also the host of the “300 Pounds and Running” podcast and the “Long Run With Martinus and Latoya” podcast on the 300 Pounds and Running Podcast Network. His story has been featured in Runner’s World and Livestrong. If you’re looking for a place to start your journey to better health, sign up for his free tips at 300poundsandrunning.com.

    Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on HuffPost? Find out what we’re looking for here and send us a pitch!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I Finally Decided To Show The World My ‘Man Boobs.’ Here’s How It Changed My Life. | HuffPost
     
  2. ControlledXaos

    Squad Veteran Most Valuable Player The 1000 Daps Club

    Age:
    46
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2015
    Messages:
    2,543
    Daps Received:
    7,178
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlanna
    All these views and no "Daps

    Y'all asses thought it was @OckyDub showing his manebewbs!

    Hats off to this dude. There's guys smaller than he is who won't take off their shirts at the pool or beach. I'm glad he was like "Fuck all you hoes!" Because I'm sure if he wanted a lose weight he could have. I definitely ain't trying to do no marathon.

    But am I the only one who thought he was gonna say he loved snacks to the class? Also I wanted to know what he liked to eat. Lol
     
  3. SB3

    SB3 is a Featured MemberSB3
    Squad Veteran Most Valuable Player The 1000 Daps Club Supporter

    Age:
    39
    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2015
    Messages:
    3,536
    Daps Received:
    8,241
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    BK, NY
    How do you know how many views vs daps?
     
  4. Winston Smith

    Best Site Comments The 1000 Daps Club Supporter

    Joined:
    May 6, 2016
    Messages:
    2,005
    Daps Received:
    5,417
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Nowhere in Particular
    Orientation:
    Gay
    Dating:
    Not looking
    Sorry, @ControlledXaos cant co-sign. Not body shaming, but bruh could stand to lose some poundage without making it a cultural/political issue (as could I).

    I think it’s a middle line: be the HEALTHIEST, FITTEST you can be at whatever body weight / type / size that DNA/God made you to be in your optimal state, THEN accept it and what’s left over. Don’t just accept current conditions and make excuses for lack of effort to try to beat/avoid obesity, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. For example, I was always bigger and taller then other kids growing, but there was definitely a difference between healthy big/tall me and unhealthy big/tall me (think Charles Barkley now and when he was at his fittest NBA size). Or Melissa McCarthy when her show “Mike and Mollie” started and the weight loss after she started film. She’s still a big lady, but now a healthy big lady.
     
  5. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
    Site Founder The 10000 Daps Club

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Messages:
    6,586
    Daps Received:
    14,917
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    The planet of Memory Corpses
    Orientation:
    Homosexual
    Dating:
    Married
    NOPE
     
    ControlledXaos dapped this.
  6. ControlledXaos

    Squad Veteran Most Valuable Player The 1000 Daps Club

    Age:
    46
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2015
    Messages:
    2,543
    Daps Received:
    7,178
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlanna
    Like 9 people saw the thread but didn't dap it.

    The thing for me is that a marathon is no joke. Sure he's big or whatever. But I don't think we can ignore the fact he's done all of these races. You shouldn't dismiss that because he's not in an certain aesthetic.

    I'm not saying he couldn't be thinner. But I'm smaller than him and I wouldn't make it beyond mile 5. There's plenty of muscled up or thin people who can barely run a 5k.
     
    OckyDub dapped this.
  7. Sean P

    Squad Leader The 100 Daps Club Supporter

    Age:
    57
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2016
    Messages:
    234
    Daps Received:
    921
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Seattle/Atlanta
    Dating:
    Single
    I am a fit guy and I can appreciate a wide range of shapes from skinny to fat. A dude can be too skinny and a fat Brotha needs to be proportioned right for my taste. My eyes definitely veer towards husky and fit Brothas before skinny boys. Yet, dude in the post is beyond my skill set. He would definitely have to shed some pounds to catch my eye and I’ve definitely given some big Brothas play.
     
  8. Winston Smith

    Best Site Comments The 1000 Daps Club Supporter

    Joined:
    May 6, 2016
    Messages:
    2,005
    Daps Received:
    5,417
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Nowhere in Particular
    Orientation:
    Gay
    Dating:
    Not looking
    Yes, I applaud the running. It’s a good start. Ultimately, I don’t care about the “aesthetics”, you need to be medically correct for your particular genetic profile, big or small.The amount of adipose fat on this dude is indicative of some needed weight loss. And I realize we’re all unique. I mentioned in a previous post on CA how stupid the Navy was when I was in and the Navy Times had a cover story about a white dude they wouldn’t promote to Chief Petty Officer because of his roundness. Some candy-assed, fruity Navy review board didn’t think this guy—who had textbook perfect physical fitness scores and was cleared by his doctor as being in great health—-“looked good in uniform” just because he had a Bob Hoskins-type body. That was being fucking stupid about looks. If the guy had poor physical fitness or hypertension, that would be a different case.

    We can acknowledge progress and still should not feel guilty for telling people they need to make healthful changes without the hashtag-whatever cancel-culture crowd seeing criticism as being “triggering”, “micro-aggressive”, “anti-affirming” “fat shaming” or whatever the none-dealing-with-reality phrase of the day is...
     
Loading...
Similar Threads - Finally Decided Show Forum Date
The Orville Finally Has a Season 3 Premiere on Hulu Television and Web Series Sep 23, 2021
Facebook Finally Decides to Remove False Ads about PrEP Mental, Medical and Sexual Health Jan 3, 2020
Y'all Finally Got Your Own Store Now Too! Group Discussions Sep 20, 2019
THOT THOUGHTS: This New Buff Casual Look For Jidenna Finally Has Me Convinced Thirst Traps Jul 11, 2019
American Gods' Second Season Will Finally Arrive in March Television and Web Series Dec 5, 2018

Share This Page

Loading...