Next weekend is 2021 Memorial Day weekend and I've been thinking about the goth subculture. Real quick, let me rewind back to 1992; 1991/1992 was my fourth grade school year. If you want to do the math, I graduated high school in 2000 - year of the Y2K scare. In 1992, I was really starting to figure out what I liked and what I didn't like. This is when I first started noticing the gothic subculture, but hadn't fully realized what it was...I mean, c'mon, I was in fourth grade.
The awesome thing about the 90s is that there were diverse subcultures (which meant diverse arts and culture growth), we got the direct influences from the 80s, the internet started becoming more readily available, and it seemed like everyone had some cause throughout the 90s - Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, AIDS Awareness, equal rights, save the animals, save the planet, etc.
We had our first internet dial up by 1993, along with a computer that ran Windows 3.1. It used to be that there were internet directories that would come with your first dial up connection so people could understand how to use the internet. Listed were some interesting sites, but what I was interested in was the Dark Side of The Net (established in 1993 and still going today). This is where I learned about the gothic subculture. This is where I found goth forums, guides on goth clothing, info on gothic music, the goth code, etc.
Did I have a style I liked? Sure. I was firstly a jeans and t-shirt goth because it was easy. I had that stuff in black. I also really loved the romantic goth style with corsets and velvet and lace. As the years went by, I basically opted for a mish-mash of jeans or black dress pants, some sort of fishnet or stretchy lace shirt under a black cap-sleeve crew neck t-shirt or a 3/4 velvet shirt, boots, wallet on a chain, studded belt, and black eye make-up. I was pretty plain. Half of my shit came from thrift stores.
How does this relate to Health Goth? I just want to establish that I was not a super sporty person. I never had to wear a sports uniform during school hours like some of the jocks. For the record, in high school I was a fencer - foil and epee. Mostly I just hung out in the theater department building and painting stuff.
After high school, post-2000 and it's Y2K scare, I started becoming more concerned about my health and stuff. Anyway, it's a long story. Needless to say, by 2016, I started getting into this health goth thing. Actually, I didn't even know about it until about 2018 or so. I was just hitting the gym all the time and most of my gym clothes are black. I pretty much just lived in workout clothes.
What is Health Goth?
You can check out the Health Goth manifesto video (above). Basically it's goths at the gym. You might think "that sounds kind of silly", but seriously...hit the gym regularly and you'll look WAY better in that fishnet shirt. This does not encompass the "Health At Every Size" (HAES) bullshit. In today's society everyone wants to be accepted as they are, but lets face it, sometimes people need to be told "No" and that they're wrong. If you're overweight or obese, you're carrying too much fat and need to lose it. Underweight, average weight, overweight, and obese (class I, II, III) are all based on body fat percentage and age. If you can get yourself in the average weight category and stay there (fat percentage of 18.5%-25%), you're good. You're going to reduce your health issues, improve your body, look better, feel better, and you will experience improvements that might have been a conflict before like mobility or strength.
Part of this is also eating a better diet. This means lean meats, vegetables, fruits, whole grains (not white grains), and avoidance of the "bad stuff" (like sugar, processed foods, fake shit, etc).
I've stepped into this big time. Currently, I'm training as a bodybuilder. I'm not fully there yet, but I'm getting there. I have a strict diet and I hit the gym 7 days a week. My aim is physique class - in case you were wondering. For bodybuilding there are categories as follows: bikini, figure, wellness, physique, fitness, and bodybuilder. When I started, I didn't know the difference, except for bikini and bodybuilder.
Why does it matter? It's 2021 and obesity is a crisis that people are ignoring. I abhor laziness, so I have found some ideals in living a healthy lifestyle. It absolutely takes effort and discipline. For a long time, it wasn't really a goth thing, but now it can be. How crazy would it be if goth became synonymous with being super fit and healthy?
It seems like 2021 is a good year to really push Health Goth. Did you see that covid-19 hit obese people the hardest? Not super surprising. When you start living a healthier lifestyle, you'll notice that you don't get sick as often. It's not a cure-all, but you'll just be...better.
Here are some tips for those looking into Health Goth:
Workout for 1 hour, 5 days a week. 20 min cardio, 40 min weights.
Stick with lean meats, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, some dairy.
Avoid sugar, white grains (flour, white rice, etc), processed foods, and fake foods.
Flat studs only at the gym. Pointy studs can puncture gym equipment and can really suck if they get in the way.
Avoid make-up and fragrances at the gym. Wait until after the gym.
Feel free to accent with purple, blood red, and graveyard grey (think sweatbands and stuff).
Always have a cardio playlist and a separate weightlifting playlist.
If you are interested in learning some gym basics, leave me a comment. I'll gladly post something to help you out.
Let me know what your thoughts are on the whole Health Goth genre. Do you like it? Do you hate it? Do you want to know more? Spill your soul in the comments.