T Nation

Negative Self Image: Isn't It Scary?


I tink I can considering at this point in time I seriously think I am mildly orthorexic and am constantly concerned with how my body looks and feels, despite not being a famous bodybuilder or Olympia competitor. I’m also a registered dietitian. MANY RD’s have hangups about their own bodies and food habits. I once completed a report on body image and muscle dystrophia during my schooling.

Yes, but then in a subsequent post you mentioned focusing on weaknesses to the point of compulsion and obsession when bodybuilding inherently requires this! If it’s not obsession, then what the hell word can describe it? I don’t know how other people handle a prep, but when I handled my first prep I was determined to let people know I was obsessed and did suffer, whether I placed or not! Perhaps I am not explaining my main point or you’re not getting the gist of it as it relates to your post to me, not your original post/article!

I actually am considering what I am sharing and that I responded to Jewbacca’s post as well.

I never said you did.


Good to hear, there’s masses of research into classical disorders, not much so in muscle dysmorphia, due to it being a newer set of symptoms and really, isn’t taken that secretly because the effects aren’t as apparent (e.g. steroid abuse can be easily hidden). In terms of the studies, this reflects in literature, research is largely funded by governments or private companies so research is only done on things that are paid for which obviously leaves huge gaps in psychology, biology, sociology and all other research fields. My dissertation will look at both genders, I’ll hopefully get to go further than undergrad too so I’ll keep posting through my research.


It was only a joke bro.


I initially thought it was. It was funny. :slight_smile:


No, it shows that people who are dissatisfied with their bodies undertake fitness/diet behaviors, not the other way around. Sounds like they are doing something about a perceived problem. Good on them.

When I was a track athlete, I was dissatisfied with my 400 meter time because it was my weak link.

In a related study of college coeds when I was an undergrad, I found that the coeds studying psychology were crazy AF. I postulate that they studied psychology because they were crazy AF, not that studying psychology made them crazy.


I would have to agree with this, I’m sure everyone knows at least one person who is a counter example but those are the exception. If you have a negative self image maybe its just because at one point the image really wasn’t that great and you wanted to fix it.

The main problem is really more in line with the fat acceptance thread. Except its more “being normal” acceptance, anyone who tries to exceed the norm (in a good way) is labeled as a problem because it makes others look bad.


Exactly my point, except more elegantly stated.

Not only is cause-and-effect muddled (correlation without causation), the underlying PC academic assumption is that people should be happy with their appearance, even if they are fat asses and out of shape.

No, there is nothing wrong with being unsatisfied with being a fat ass, any more than there is nothing wrong with being unsatisfied with being poor, uneducated, or anything else.


But JB, it’s my divine right as a Special Snowflake to feel good about myself no matter how unproductive, unfit, uneducated and unaccomplished I choose to remain. To do otherwise would demand that I allow myself to feel gasp Uncomfortable and then double gasp do something about it of my own volition. I’m offended at the very suggestion, Sir. I’m awesome no matter what, my Mom told me so.


I’m getting more and more disturbed at what the current educational system is teaching these kids and what it will gradually evolve into in the coming years. That’s what’s scary.


@dt79 In a nutshell, unbridled and sinfully humanistic and egalitarian lies and mythology. Though we are not going to do it, I have several times of thought of home schooling–seriously!


Those people who want to be a Monster Truck or a Ferrari are not well-adjusted anyway, batman. Inside, they are a bundle of unhappiness. This is the way to go, right here.


Nope. No cars. Public transportation only. Trains, buses, and planes for our important leaders. OK, maybe bicycles. But nothing fancy. Just one gear. Black.

I’m thinking we should all wear those Mao Suits the communist used to have.

And live in the same exact concrete houses.

And have exactly one child.

What is it with liberals/communist wanting everyone to be exactly the same degree of miserable and chopping off the top of any blade of grass that sticks up its head too far?

Envy (one of the top 10 sins, recall – coveting) is the core motivation/justification of most all liberal thought, when you drill it down.

You may not be strong and fit because it makes me feel bad about my body!

And I concur re: public education and special snowflakes.


Awesome. I live at the top of a hill so riding that bike is going to give me some killer quads! Soon I’ll look better in that Mao suit. I have my “Who is John Galt?” t-shirt on today, Jewbacca. Feel free to covet it.


“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”

(various attributions)


Are you dissing Rand? Why does this not surprise me?

I love the J.R.R. Tolkien books, but I might love Atlas Shrugged more. Maybe. I’ve read it twice. The Fountainhead and Anthem just once. I often hear people criticize Rand, though they’ve never read her books. I hope you’re not one of those. As for Tolkien, there’s nothing not to love in those, but all of these (Rand and Tolkien) have some worthy heroes, my friend. The only book I may love more is Jane Eyre. I’ve read that one three times, and she’s the hero of all heroes for me.

On the topic of self image and the human endeavor -

“What greater wealth is there than to own your life and to spend it on growing? Every living thing must grow. It can’t stand still. It must grow or perish.”
― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

And a bit on the lines of another quote you shared about the reasonable man and changing the world. “She did not know the nature of her loneliness. The only words that named it were: This is not the world I expected.”


I read Rand’s Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, which is a non-fiction account of her philosophy. That was more than enough. (If I want to read bad fiction, I’ll get a job teaching high-school English.) :wink:


Ok, well then. Atlas Shrugged for Christmas. And if you haven’t read The Lord of The Rings, those. Add fireplace, and chocolate, and you have the perfect vacation. No, watching the movies does not suffice, although for Jane Eyre there’s a Masterpiece Theatre edition with Toby Stephens and Ruth Wilson that is nearly four hours of wonderful. So much that’s pertinent to the idea of self-image/ self-respect in Jane. She was not a Camry. I know this goes down as a chick book, so if thinking about it makes you feel less like a Monster Truck, watch that one with your wife and daughter.


I actually have a copy of Atlas Shrugged–somewhere. And the LOTR, well, I’m afraid that’s just too twee for me at this juncture. (But thank you for the gracious offer.)

As for watching Jane Eyre with my wife and daughter, the tricky part is figuring out how to get it to be their idea (can’t be mine, obviously).


Just a quick thought on the bicycle point. I believe that it would be greatly beneficial for a person, who is in position to do so, to ride a bike to work for a few months. Every day, regardless of how they feel, or how much they don’t want to.

Obviously, if you have to take your kids to school and won’t have time afterwards to make it to work on time, or over 5-10 miles of a commute, this won’t be very easy to acheive.

But, if it is only a matter of getting up earlier and the effort of the ride, that prevents a person from doing this? I challenge you to do it, listen to some uplifting podcast en route and stay committed when you really don’t want to.

Possibly even journal some of your thoughts after your commute…

There is a quote, “Adversity toughens manhood, and the characteristics of the good or great man is not that he has been exempt from the evils of life, but that he has surmounted them.” Now, this month or two of a bike riding commute might not be considered an “evil” of life, but if a person is living an average life with all the luxuries an average life provides today? An extended amount of time dealing with this commute challenge, especially getting over those days when you really don’t want to do it, can have a very positive impact on their life.

What would one of these studies say about a person who purposely does something in their life to cause more struggle?


I rode a bike just about everywhere I went for about 4 years when I lost my drivers licence.

Definitely changes the way you shop.