Would you think this guy is fit from just looking at his body? If you read magazines and have bought into the idea that six-pack abs are an indicator of fitness, you probably would not think that this guy’s fit. Well, this is Fedor Emelianenko, one of the toughest MMA fighters and boxers to ever live. He is a favorite among many professional fighters including Jose Aldo and Ronda Rousey, for his ability to take down larger opponents, win by submission, as well as build a reputation as a knockout artist.
Fedor is one of the fittest men on earth. Yet he wouldn’t appear on the cover of Men’s Health magazine because of his ‘dad bod.’ What does this say about our values as a society? Basically, that we have mistaken fitness with a look. Fitness has nothing to do with a look. It has everything to do with however how functional you are, and the strength of your muscles, heart, lungs, brain, and the other major systems in your body (endocrine is important for fitness).
Just to prove to you that you can be “fat” and be fit, below is a video highlighting some of Fedor’s best moments as a fighter. Now, let’s stop calling Fedor fat. He has fat. But this is a normal body and we need to remove the moral judgment of the term fat.
Now, if you’re overweight or have the body fat percentage that Fedor has (during fights he’s more like 18% I would estimate, whereas in the picture for this post he looks to be in the mid 20s), perhaps you want to lose weight. Maybe that’s why you’re here. But I just want to ask you to think about how you think this would improve your life.
Are you more focused on achieving the look or are you concerned for health? If it’s the latter, understand that health and weight loss are different things. We cannot assume that someone at, say, 25% body fat, is automatically unhealthy. This is the fad that has been promoted for decades now.
I will admit, that being lean looks great, but trust me, many women actually prefer the dad bod look. In fact, one lady told me that Fedor’s body type was the “perfect look for a man” on Instagram. WOW. That definitely challenges my own perceptions a little bit too, because I’m maintaining around 17% body fat and wish I was back at 11% like the days of abs.
But, I value my health and metabolism. Once that is healed, I may be able to lose it again, but for now, my focus is not losing weight. But if yours is, just ask yourself why. I’m not pushing a dad bod. But if you don’t feel confident or happy or that you can meet the partner of your dreams because of a dad bod or being overweight, think again.