In this world of quick fixes, Nat betrays his fitness professional roots and goes under the knife. How does he justify it? He doesn’t even try.
The Bogdanov brothers (Photo source: http://www.celebrityplasticsurgery.tv)
Catherine Deneuve once declared that ‘women of a certain age must choose between their fanny and their face.’ Her point is that, as one gets older, one needs to gain a bit of weight to keep the wrinkles at bay. And it makes sense. As we age, we naturally gain a bit of weight, but that weight is good because it fills in the sags and wrinkles from the inside with one’s own fat. I can deal with that.
The problem with this, however, is when one gains weight to fill out the crows’ feet and frown lines, fat also gets slammed on to one’s arse, hips and love handles. As we all know, no one can have it all. So what’ll it be? Crows’ feet or love handles? Decide.
Well, with the advent of modern plastic surgery, it seems we may not have to decide. In fact, with some judicious slicing and vacuuming, there is the promise of not only having a youthful-looking visage, but also a thin body. One can have a wrinkle-free face and get rid of that sagging arse and those dreaded love handles permanently if only one is willing to go under the knife. The real decision, nowadays, seems to be not between one’s fanny or one’s face, but between which will be surgically tightened up first.
I know all of you out there are wondering how a gym rat like me can even discuss plastic surgery, let alone contemplate or actually go through with it. Aren’t I the person who has been certified as a personal trainer and works out in a gym at least an hour a day? Aren’t I the man who hikes 150 kilometres a week on holiday? Didn’t I run 10 kilometres a day not so long ago? With all of that, why do I need plastic surgery?
Well no one needs plastic surgery. That’s why it’s referred to euphemistically as ‘elective surgery’. But if there’s a dirty little secret in the fitness industry, this is it. No one will admit to plastic surgery because it’s kind of like cheating. Conventional wisdom dictates that, if one is fit, one automatically looks great. For the most part, that’s true. If you have muscle mass and are lean enough that it shows definition, anyone can look like a Greek god. At least from the neck down. But if you want godhood without the wrinkly face, you’re dreaming.
I most definitely lost Greek god status a long while ago. Grown up life has set in and I have let my training certification lapse. I am no longer a practising fitness professional. I stopped running 10 kilometres a day twenty years ago. I still go to the gym obsessively and I do hike a lot on every holiday, but stress and a love of good food and wine have taken their toll on my fitness levels and therefore my appearance. I will always love to exercise, but I have reached an age where fitness is no disguise for middle age. And I know I’m not alone.
My fitness levels are actually pretty good. I could use more cardio-vascular endurance and I most definitely could be a few pounds lighter, but that’s another blog for another day. If there’s any declaration being made by my fanny or my face, it’s that I am generally okay with looking older because I am older. I’m happy to be emotionally and professionally mature, so I don’t totally mind looking it too.
But baldness? Eye bags? Sagging jowls? Or, worse yet, sagging boobs (remember, I’m talking about myself here, so I mean men, too). I hate to be defeatist, but no amount of push-ups or running will get rid of those. Well maybe the sagging boobs, but then my face would sag instead – all the bouncing from running might actually make my budding jowls worse. In such cases, there usually is no recourse but to go under the knife.
So I got plastic surgery on my arse. No one sees it and no one would know unless I told them (I will spare you the before and after pictures), but just between you, me and the Internet, I’m happy I did it. It was just beginning to look like the back side of an envelope and I just couldn’t bear that.
The problem is, that having started it, you need more. Not that my arse was imperfect and I would settle for nothing less, it’s just that, after a few years, the bits that weren’t removed began to need removing. And so I went under the knife again. And will I want it again in a few years? Who knows.
The real decision, you see, is not between my fanny and my face or having surgery on one or the other. The real decision is between mourning my youth or accepting middle age. Scientists are doing everything they can to crack the code of aging so that, if we can’t reverse it, at least we can hold it off. For the most part, we’re succeeding. Fifty is the new thirty, but let’s be honest with ourselves: the metabolism slows and hormone levels drop and no amount of replacement will change that. Exercise helps, but gravity still pulls your arse and your jowls down.
Nothing will bring back my youth and, as I’ve said before, I really don’t want to go back there because, emotionally and professionally, those times were less settled than they are now. I’m happy to be where I am, I just don’t want to be here with a sagging arse.
There are countless anecdotes (and Internet websites) devoted to plastic surgery gone horribly wrong. Famous French television personalities the Bogdanov brothers are allegedly a case in point. Everyone can see the before and after photos of the both of them and people most definitely have talked about it. I mean, isn’t the point of plastic surgery to look good and be admired for looking good? At least I could always cover my arse if anything went wrong, but if I walked around with a paper bag over my head, I think people would notice. I’m happy with my decision, but eagerly await the day I’ve accepted being middle-aged enough that I don’t feel a need to make any choices at all.
12/07/2012 - 11:02