While the rest of the world was seemingly tuned into the Golden Globes last night, I was glued to Oprah’s Next Chapter to see her interview with Governor Chris Christie. Aside from really liking him and wishing more politicians could be as “real” and honest as he is (even though I don’t always agree with his views and sometimes find him a bit too outspoken), I found myself most interested in the conversation about his weight. Not because I think his weight should be as controversial as it has been in the media (I mean, how does the size of someone really affect their potential to be the president?), but because I found his attitudes about it to be especially inspiring.
Oprah first asked the New Jersey Governor:
People comment on my weight all the time, and they comment on yours. Is it ever hurtful to you?
To which Christie responded:
Not anymore. I think it hurt me a lot when I was younger. But I kinda think now I’ve developed a bit of a shell about it because it’s been talked about so much. I don’t like being overweight. I know I’d be healthier and better off if I weren’t.
Then (this is the part I really liked) when Oprah asked if he ever feels guilty about his size or inability to control his weight, he admitted that he did:
Sure. I would love to show these people who say that because I’m overweight that means I’m not disciplined. Do they think I can get to where I am by being undisciplined? Let me show them. But more the guilt that I feel is in regard to my children and that I wish I could get better control just for my own health and my own future.
What’s so great about that statement is his honesty. These days it seems like a lot of celebrities are all about fat-empowerment, saying things like “I feel great, I love my body and its size, this is who I am, like it or not.” But not Christie. Instead of saying something that others might want or expect him to say, he is real and honest about his struggles. He doesn’t try to hide behind an idea that his weight doesn’t matter.
It would have been really easy for him to say, “My weight is no one’s business. It’s who I am, and if people don’t like that, too bad. I’m happy with myself.” But instead, he chose to get personal by admitting that it does bother him and he would be better off at a lower weight. And the part about wanting to do it for his children so he can be a better role model, a better father and be around longer for them is equally as truthful. Honesty like that is refreshing and inspiring–especially from a politician!
At the end, Christie says he is now doing something about his weight. He has hired a dietician, and he’s working out four times a week–three of those with a personal trainer.
You go, Governor!