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damn, girl, these panties be huge!

Jen Lancaster's Such a Pretty Fat
No other weight loss book will make you so hungry. Softened butter and mounds of fresh shaved Parmesan cheese are sprinkled throughout Jen Lancaster’s “Such a Pretty Fat: One Narcissist's Quest to Discover If Her Life Makes Her A** Look Big, or Why Pie Is Not the Answer.” Lancaster likes food. And she likes herself. It’s a new concept: A happy, heavy woman.

“Yeah, my midriff is fat, but it’s not blobby, dimple, rippling fat. It’s … pretty fat, if that’s possible.”

This isn’t a heavy woman with low self esteem who doesn’t feel worthwhile until she fits into her skinny jeans. This is a book about a woman who just wants to be healthier. It’s a refreshing, funny spin on your typical weight loss book.

“I’m so tired of books where a self-loathing heroine is teased to the point where she starves herself skinny in hopes of a fabulous new life. And I hate the message that women can’t possibly be happy until we’re all size fours. I don’t find these stories uplifting rather, I want to hug these women and take them out for fizzy champagne drinks and cheesecake and explain to them that until they figure out their insides, their outsides don’t matter.”

This is as much about Jen figuring out her inside as it is about her working on her outside. While this is a book about trying to lose weight, Jen doesn’t actually start losing weight until halfway through. She focuses on the part of weight loss that people need the most help: starting. To officially start her diet, Jen faces how much weight she has actually gained when she steps on the scale after years of avoidance.

“I don’t weigh this much. I can’t weigh this much. I’m a cute ex-sorority girl, not some six-foot-four, corn-fed linebacker from Nebraska. … This weight is wrong. Wrong. I’m not a professional wrestler. Or a baby beluga. Or a barrel full of butter. I step on and off a fourth time.”

Lancaster stumbles upon self discoveries that women can connect with. “A month ago I was fat and happy. But ever since I made the decision to drop a few pounds – way less easy than it sounds, by the way – I’ve become obsessed with my size, and in so doing I’ve inadvertently allowed my inner critic to have a voice. And you know what? She’s a b****. Like now when I see my underpants in the laundry, I no longer think Soft! Cotton! Sensible! Instead I hear her say Damn, girl, these panties be huge.”

Then Jen decides to photograph her weight loss journey: “How the f*** did Jabba the Hutt get into my bedroom, and why is he wearing my pearls?”

Jen's empowering whit is uplifting, and she isn’t afraid to tell the world she listens to Ricky Martin, The Spice Girls and “Barbie Girl” while working out.

Lancaster doesn’t glamorize her results. She doesn’t make it sound easy, gloss over her failures or tip toe around the fact that she’s heavy. She makes her failures funny:

“The bike sold the very first day, largely due to the ad I posted: TWO FAT PEOPLE ADMIT DEFEAT. … Please buy our bike and get it out of our house so it’s no longer a daily reminder of how we failed in our quest for fitness. Also? We’re tired of dusting it. P.S. It will fit in an SUV, but we can also deliver it for an additional fee, although do you really want two sweaty fat people having simultaneous heart attacks in your stairwell? P.P.S. Naturally, we’ll need cash because we’ll probably use the money for pie.”

But this isn’t about failures. It’s about getting back up every time you slip up. This book will motivate you to make healthier choices and help you quell your inner critic.

Lancaster doesn’t focus on the numbers, she focuses on her feelings. “Despite all this dieting and working out, I’m not yet thin. … But I can carry laundry up two flights of stairs, and I can run for the phone or on a treadmill. I don’t sweat when I eat anymore, and when I do eat, it’s not cookies for dinner. My blood pressure is now normal, my cholesterol is out of the danger zone, and I don’t even have to take Ambien, because obesity no longer causes my insomnia.”

Lancaster is tough, yet vulnerably honest. If you want a bikini body by August, this may not be the guide for you. But, if you want to feel good about sporting that bikini no matter what size you are, go ahead grab a copy.

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“damn, girl, these panties be huge!”

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