If you’ve followed the site/page for any length of time you’ll be aware that WeDiveToo has its haters. People that really dislike the idea of plus size divers…existing! There aren’t many but they are out there.
Let’s look at the reasons they are not only wrong, but also being counterproductive towards their stated goals.
They dislike plus size divers. However, if they really want plus size divers to vanish from the earth then they shouldn’t be moaning about them diving, they should be encouraging them to dive, and subsequently lose weight. You’ll find out why diving is the perfect form of exercise for anyone that wants to lose weight, below.
Logically they should be the number one cheer squad for plus size divers. They aren’t because they either aren’t intelligent enough to think ahead, or they just like hating people and don’t really care about your weight at all. Having dealt with these ass-cravats in the past, I’m firmly of the opinion that it is the second option.
But, ignoring them, as we should, scuba diving and freediving really are great ways to lose weight for these reasons:
Let’s look at how these issues make scuba diving, and freediving the great option that it is.
If you want to exercise for a long time then it needs to be fun. This way you don’t have to fight the urge to stop as you are actually enjoying yourself. We are naturally drawn to fun things, and so do more of them.
Weight issues are commonly associated with stress. If you dive then you already know that stress floats, and as you descend you leave it behind. Less stress means less stress related weight problems. Simple!
Your emotional well being has already been proven to impact your immune system. Therefore, as diving is a fun activity that reduces stress, it’s obvious it also improves your immune system and health. With better health your metabolism improves and you are happier.
The more you weigh, the more starting and stopping motion delivers impact to your joints and ligaments. Jump on the spot and the more you weigh, the more this will harm your joints over time. This leads to pain, which understandably discourages further exercise. It’s not like you needed to give your skeleton a workout, and being submerged in water completely eliminates all impact, thus removing this source of pain. Therefore it stands to reason you’ll exercise for longer, and lose more weight underwater.
There are 2 main types of exercise, and your situation and goal should determine which you do. The one you think you are doing may not be the one you are actually doing, as explained below…
Cardiovascular exercise is typically done with little to no weight, as the aim is to do lots of a low stress activity to get the heart and lungs working, and improve general health.
Walking is a good example. Aerobics or jogging is better…but only if you are already thin.
Walking is great for burning fat, and is typically your best option for losing weight. Unless you can dive!
Strength training is what you do to build muscle. It is a brief period of intense stress and effort designed to convince the body it needs more muscle. This doesn’t do much to burn fat at all, as the focus is on building additional muscle mass. The muscle pushes the fat out further. It can work to burn fat but it is not the way to go. A typical result of strength training is an increase in weight.
The evil twist is that if you are a plus size diver then your body probably weighs more than that of your average fitness instructor. This means you body is acting like a set of weights, and you aren’t going to be able to dance about and do something like aerobics. Jogging will also be a trip to hell, and won’t achieve for you what it does for a thin person. Doing something like this would require considerably more effort for you than for them, and if you weigh a lot more than them, it simply won’t work well for you. It would hammer your joints. This can be overcome to some degree, but it is troublesome.
Essentially if you do any energetic form of cardio, like aerobics, you are actually doing strength training, and as explained this isn’t ideal. You won’t be able to do the activity for very long, so it won’t help your heart, lungs and general health in the same way you intended.
Walking works well, but again you are still carrying more weight, so you still suffer additional impact stress on your joints, and to a degree what you are doing is still akin to strength training, though not as severe. If you can manage to go for long walks though, that is also a good way to get in some cardio.
Scuba diving, however, completely sidesteps the issue. Your body is weightless in the water, so there is much less resistance, and zero impact on your joints. That means you can achieve true cardiovascular exercise just like a thin person that goes for long walks on dry land. You can improve your heart, lungs, and general health while burning fat.
And that is why scuba diving is the perfect weight loss method for a plus size diver, and why anyone that dislikes plus size divers should be celebrating your dive. As I said, they won’t, as they don’t really want you to change, as they enjoy being a hater. Thankfully the vast majority of people are good, and they are simply happy to see you enjoying yourself.
Weight and health are not the same thing. We are all different. Some people are in the best of health when they are so thin they make people worry. Other people feel unwell if they lose enough weight to reach their ‘target’ weight. The important thing if you are considering weight loss is to make sure it makes you happier, to do it for the right reasons, to concentrate on health and not numbers, and if at all possible to do it primarily through diving because….diving!
Let us know your thoughts in the group on Facebook, we’d love to hear your take on things.
Colin is an inventor, author, guitar player, amateur scientist and steampunk enthusiast. During his years as a ships navigator his luck was so consistently bad that he was briefly known as 'Jonah', presumed cursed, and subsequently barred from setting foot on any boat docked in Ireland. Due to his misadventures he spent more time underwater than most divers will achieve in a lifetime. Not deliberately, but he was still down there!