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Read My Hips: How I Learned to Love My Body, Ditch Dieting, and Live Large

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3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  205 ratings  ·  40 reviews
Kim Brittingham struggled for years with her weight and body image before she learned how to love her self unconditionally, find her confidence, and fully enjoy her life. In this unflinching, humorous, and uplifting memoir, she openly explores her complex relationships with food and dieting, sex and dating, and exercise and health, ultimately inspiring every woman to live ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published May 3rd 2011 by Three Rivers Press (first published January 1st 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,080)
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Marti
I loved this book. Finally someone who isn't telling me how great my life will be once I finally lose the weight. Kim tells the story of how she came to accept her curves, belly, and big legs as part of her and deemed them acceptable, lovable and sexy. She does more than just endure life she thrives in it and is pursuing her dreams right where she is.

More than just big girl power it's about self empowerment without being preachy or with a three-step plan to achieve it. It's an honest, vulnerabl
...more
Sarah
My Review: For anyone who has experienced a tumultuous relationship with food and body image— which would be almost all of us— self-acceptance may initially seem like a radical idea. And that’s because it is! As a society, we’re not taught to love ourselves and feel comfortable in our bodies. In fact, the exact opposite is true. The diet and weight-loss industry (along with several other equally criminal corporate interests) rake in millions upon millions of dollars each year by planting the mal ...more
David
Overweight author explains at some length how she's ok with that and has learned to accept herself as is. Describes horribly mean things people say to her about her weight and have since she was a kid. Overall messages of living your life the way you want to NOW rather than waiting until you lose weight, of being fun and outgoing and cheerful rather than hanging back and avoiding people because you assume they'll reject you for being fat, etc. came through well.

Beyond that, readability was highe
...more
Jess
A feel good book that hashes out what it feels like to be a person in society that not only have personal self image issues but how society reacts sometimes positively and sometimes negatively to someone that doesn't meet America's ideal size. I felt that not only did I relate to this book and diets and time and how they don't necessarily work and how it is a money grab. This book definitely gave me a little bit of insight not only into the world of dieting but how it is more important to accept ...more
Cecily
"If I lose x pounds, I'll be/feel attractive. If I weigh x pounds, people will like me. If I just lose x more pounds, I'll be happy." Why, like her, have I believed this for so long? Because it's been engrained in my head since I was a child--this idea that only pretty, thin people are truly happy or somehow more deserving.

It made me realize that it doesn't matter what I weigh, I need to live my life now and do the things that I want to do. The number on the scale does not determine my self wort
...more
Foofus Kitty
I really enjoyed the beginning of this book. Read the first half in one night. Found myself nodding to many of the things she said. However, I didn't care for the second half of the book - it seemed as if she often took 10,000 words to say what could have been said in 100. Several of the last few chapters seemed like repeated ideas or run on rambling writing to fill up the chapter. I actually did a speed read on the last 5 chapters.

Still think this is one that is worth perusing because like Kim
...more
Ellen Keim
The ONLY thing I didn't like about this book is that I found it so hard to believe that the author really is totally all right being fat. If she has reached that level of self-assurance, my hat's off to her. It was well worth reading for an alternative and refreshing viewpoint about the whole issue of obesity in this country. I only wish I could accept my body the way the author has. This is a quick and interesting read for anyone who is concerned about her body image. I definitely recommend it. ...more
Kim
This was hard for me to read as sometimes I thought she had been following me around. If you are larger READ THIS! If you have body image issues READ THIS! If you think fat people don't matter (SHAME ON YOU! READ THIS!
Gmr
What I expected was a marginally interesting read with a few pointers on living life to its fullest whether that's in size or grandeur, what I got was happily a bit more with a few spots of discomfort along the edges. Allow me to explain.

This book is part memoir, part self help in the fact that you get to see life through the author's eyes, but also gain a bit of insight to better help you come to a place of understanding and acceptance about your body image. There are times you will laugh....l
...more
Tatjana
Kim has a very lyrical way of writing.
I less read than inhaled this book. It was like sneaking into my sister's room and reading her journal. In two breathless sittings I was ecstatic to discover another member of my growing tribe of perky, creative, gorgeous, sassy Amazon women who were embodying what I had intuited for years.
It's tempting to pour out my heart after reading this book, but this is a review, not my personal diary. Trust me, if given the opportunity, however, I would give you an
...more
Claire S. Gould
A writer and blogger who writes primarily fat-positive personal essays, Kim Brittingham’s first novel Read My Hips: How I Learned to Love My Body, Ditch Dieting, and Live Large brings her refreshing tales of self-acceptance and fat-positive feminism to the world of memoirs. Each chapter reads much like a standalone essay in Brittingham’s lifelong journey to accept her body. In some ways this style was jarring, because it is not linear — we learn about her experiences in middle school, high schoo ...more
Shari
p. 66 (Are you) putting off life until thinness?
p.86 I make better food choices because I've come to value my experience of life more than how I appear in this life, or what size my body is at any given point.
p. 105 Strutting. Who knew? It's psychological shape wear.
p.123 Why indulge in the preposterous idea that I am unloveable because my stomach, my arms, my ass, my thighs, are not what a shallow money-driven media tells me they should be?
p. 131 (Don't be) completely appearance focused. Succes
...more
Jess
Overall this book hovered between somewhere between OK and good. I liked the overall message but in the context of an entire book, it got repetitive.

Her biggest message that the world doesn’t hear enough of is that our society has made it OK to openly hate fat people. From people she has worked with to her own family, the way some people talk to and about fat people is, pardon my language, just plain fucked up. As someone ‘larger than life’ I can relate to some of what she went through. Not enou
...more
Kris Dinnison
Brittingham's humorous storytelling about her lifetime of navigating a body-obsessed world in a body that doesn't fit the ideal is both entertaining and challenging. Some of the treatment she endured at the hands of "normal" people is beyond rude, and the kinds of things people felt free to say to and about her are appalling. But Brittingham shares it all in the service of recounting her own journey to self acceptance. In the process she points a glaring spotlight on the casual cruelty we serve ...more
Lexi Laskey
This book was good-- I liked her confidence and zest for life.
I thought her understanding of how and why she overate was perceptive and valid. I ached for the child she was and the fear and anxiety she faced....I understood. I was shocked at how rude some people were....other than when I was a child and teenager I have never faced ridicule for my weight--- I think I would snap and end up with an assualt charge... I can't believe how rude some people were.I liked how she decided to eat to be heal
...more
Spook Harrison
Aug 26, 2011 Spook Harrison rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Women and Men!
Recommended to Spook by: PastaQueen
Woah. I loved this book, and will have to get myself a copy. Reading the essays inspired me to take their messages truly to heart and implement some of that audacious self-love into my life, and to question some of my own ingrained reactions. I enjoyed Brittingham's writing style as well, her poetic descriptions and intellectual, exploratory arguments kept the reading fresh and compelling. Seriously, I'm going to have to get myself a copy and will probably end up almost memorizing some of her wo ...more
Peebee
I've now read several books in this genre "fat girl bloggers who get book deals" and I think this is one of the better ones. Personally, I don't like the format of a bunch of blog entries assembled into a book, because it seems to ramble and lack the cohesion of a memoir that is more linear, or a self-help book that is more focused on progressively making a particular point.

But Brittingham is a good writer with important things to say, and it's a quick yet meaningful read that you won't regret.
...more
Cristina Garcia
This book came during a critical time in my life. I was feeling particularly negative and after reading this I was reminded of what rubbish the "beauty" industry is all about. I found great solace in Ms. Brittingham, how she handled society's oppression, of her relationship with her grandmother (which moved me the most as I read this during the birthday of my deceased grandmother), and how she turned a "weakness" into a strength. I'm thrilled that there is such a book available for girls, women ...more
Kate
Read my hips was so relatable (for me, at least) and though Kim's journey did not convince me to stop dieting myself, her self-acceptance was impressive, and some of the comments astonishing! Kim's perspective is the black sheep in this millenium, and certainly not one you would find anywhere else. She does not shy from more derogatory words for those who are plus sized (like fat) and revels in her size.
I would highly recommend this.
Irene
Thanks Kim! You've done a good thing here...this helped me to stop constantly comparing my body to those of my friends (and strangers even). We all have different bodies but all bodies require food. And if that food is delicious so much the better. Life is too short to worry about what cruel people spew out daily. Live, laugh, love. That's what's most important.
Shannon Vanderhyde
It was nice to read something by someone who successfully went from hating her body to loving it without her body changing to the stereotypical "beautiful" body.
Kate Schultz
A great book for women who need perspective on their body image. I'm sick of self-image books that have the protagonist losing weight, and then feeling better about herself. In this book, Kim talks about how her eating habits formed, the diet industry (in which she worked), and other typical trials of a large woman. She does so with humor and humanity.
Susan (susayq ~)
Reading this put a smile on my face because some of the stories Kim told in here were like I was living it myself. Probably cause I had witnessed similar in my own family and life. I am very happy that she has found happiness with her body the way that it is and is content that she doesn't need to change. maybe I'll feel the same way one day.
Anna Engel
We all think negative thoughts about our bodies at some point in our lives. The author shares her story about coming to love herself and her body, just as they are. That's what I'm trying to do. I'm a solid woman. I work out. I'm strong. I have quads of steel. I am what I am.
Susan Erhardt
The author is a very engaging writer. I would have liked a little more explanation of how she came to love herself so. The book wasn't written in a linear manner (as far as dates go), and it seemed like somewhere along the line she simply decided she was sexy and that was that.
Jennifer Lott
Jul 13, 2011 Jennifer Lott rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
AWESOME book!!
Totally hit home as I have totally been in almost all of these situations. I highly recommend for anyone to read, esp us hippy gals! Its a must read for anyone who is needing that self esteem boost or just a reminder that we are people too.
Melissa
Eh...2.5 stars. Some really good points, but not as cohesive as it could have been to make the appeal more widespread. Definitely a memoir rather than a book that would instruct and inspire others to accept and make similar choices in their lives.
Marci Fredricks
I enjoyed this book and read it in a flash. It sat on my shelf for over a year, but the moment I started reading it, I couldn't stop. She gave me a lot to think about and left me wishing more people could be aware of her views on body image.
Sarah
Books like this are so affirming; I try to read I come across in order to shore up my attempts to love and accept myself as I am. I connected less with this one than with some others I've read, but still, it was a worthwhile read.
Chibi
LOVED this book! I had a few "light bulb" moments while reading, most specifically Kim's explanation of honouring her grandmother by honouring her body. This was a great read for me.
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Kim Brittingham is a writer and blogger whose personal essays have been published on iVillage, Salon and Fresh Yarn. She received widespread national attention, including appearances on the Today Show and NPR, when she created a mock self-help book jacket with the title, Fat is Contagious: How Sitting Next to a Fat Person Can Make YOU Fat, wrapped it around a real book, and pretended to read it wh ...more
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“Every weight loss program, no matter how positively it’s packaged, whispers to you that you’re not right. You’re not good enough. You’re unacceptable and you need to be fixed.” 32 likes
“Eating – overeating – saved me. It comforted me when I was at the mercy of grown-ups who didn't know how to give what I needed. Food was something to which I had ready access, and with it I cleverly fashioned a survival mechanism that pulled me back from the edge of insanity. – a young MacGuyver of angst and junk food.” 7 likes
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