My Weight Loss Progress

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

One man's meat is another man's poison.*

The same exercise does not work for everyone. I see this very clearly even within my own family. My son and his girlfriend came to visit and she walked with Leslie Sansone with me, and it about drove her nuts. She does not like the patter. Leslie chatters all the way through, which I find helpful and encouraging, but dear K. did not like it all all.

A daughter-in-law doesn't do yoga, because she says she always hurts afterward. An excess of limberness is a family trait for her; she can easily hyper-extend and hurt herself. Another daughter-in-law has a dog, so she can get her walking in every day with Buttercup.

My husband says he enjoys both Leslie videos and yoga, but this time around I am usually working out alone. He is a college professor, the kind that can probably walk five miles in one four-hour class session, as he paces and gestures and demonstrates lab activities. When he's at home he's generally either doing household jobs or sitting at his computer, but he is losing weight and getting quite toned as well.

I am surprised, but I am actually enjoying working out alone. Some people would rather be in a gym among people. I have also discovered that what works for me can change over time, and then change back. When I first started this blog I was committed to going to a gym often, taking a yoga class, working with a trainer. Now I live within walking distance of a gym, and I'd rather just stay home and work out. I'm just as committed, but I prefer the short walk downstairs as part of my stay-home routine. I guess my loner personality is coming back into play here. And that's okay. It works for now, as long as I am working out somewhere consistently.

*The origin of the saying in the title is, as is often the case, attributed to different sources. Basically, it means that people don't always like the same things, and that's okay.At, it is attributed to the Roman poet Lucretius.  Cambridge dictionary online does not give an origin, but gives the Chinese translation--
--which translates back to English as "Turnip greens differ from each other." if you use Google Translate.  This leads me to wonder if they eat turnip greens in China.  I'm not a big fan of greens myself. gives the date of first recording as 1576, but not the source.  It lists a similar adage as "There's no accounting for tastes"(1794), which leads to the 20th Century American South idiom, "Different strokes for different folks." gives credit to Lucretius, from the 1st Century; (quod ali cibus est aliis fuat acre venenum) and says it was later used in English by playwright Thomas Middleton, 1604. (one mans meate, is another mans poyson) 

According to BookBrowse, the oldest reference known in English is in the autobiography of English composer Thomas Whythorne (c.1576), and they add "By the early 17th century the expression is clearly well in use as Jacobean playwright Thomas Middleton writes 'Whereby that old moth-eaten proverb is verified, which says one mans meate is another man's poyson. (1604)' " 

Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride brings it back to fitness in a blog article about diet and health from 2014. 

We are all different; every one of us is a unique individual. So, 'one size fits all' never works. That is why we have such a bewildering number of various diets being proposed: high carbohydrate / low carbohydrate, high fat / low fat, high protein / low protein, all raw / all cooked, etc. etc.; and the interesting thing is that every diet suits some people and does not suit others. Why is that? Because 'it takes two to tango', which means that there is no such thing as a bad food per se or good food per se without taking into account a very important factor, who is eating it! Not only who is eating it, but what state that person is in.


  1. I like working out alone, first thing in the morning. It doesn't matter that I have a major case of bed-head and no make-up, it's just me and my fitness DVDs.

    1. Me too. I've never been a "first-thing-in-the-morning" exerciser, but I'm finding I like the way it fits in and starts my day off.