Flying On An Airliner Fat or Fit?

I just returned from a vacation out to sun soaked southern California.  I was going to write a posting about how much easier the trip is now that I am fit; then I remembered — I already did.

I’m not sure how many of you remember the past case of film director extraordinaire Kevin Smith beingKevin Smith @ Macworld bumped from a flight because, it was reported, of his weight.  I remember back in my super heavyweight days, boarding a plane and holding my breath, waiting for those dreaded words, “You are too fat to fly.”

Back in my morbidly obese days, most of my flights were not solo. I was usually accompanied by my significant other, so lifting the armrest and spilling into her seat was not an issue. However, I vividly remember for take-off and landing, with the armrests down,  I could manage to squeeze into the seat. However,  my extra mass spilled into the other seat. My body would mold itself over the top and the bottom of both armrests. Many claim that they can fit in the seat with both armrests down, but that doesn’t mean they actually fit in the seat.

I said I flew with someone most times.  There were times I flew alone and on those occasions, I was concerned about making a fellow traveler, unfortunate enough to sit next to me, uncomfortable.  I remember seeing the face of the weary person as I waddled down the aisle, it was the look that was saying, please, please walk past me.  I was not only embarrassed, but I understood their dismay; so if it was possible, I would sacrifice my comfort and sit in the front row if a seat was open. You see, in the front seats the tray is not attached to the seat-back in front, because there is no seat-back in front. So it comes from the middle armrest  and because of that placement, it is not possible to lift the armrest. I could still sit in the seat, but trust me I didn’t fit, however, I would rather be uncomfortable myself, then force someone else to tolerate being seated next to me. It wasn’t fun for me either way, but my bulk left few options.

Back at the time of the “TO FAT TO FLY EVENT” It was reported that Mr. Smith had purchased two seats, but was able to board an earlier flight. On the earlier flight two seats were not available, so he would have to sit next to someone else. Mr. Smith, it had been reported, stated at the time that “he knows he is fat, but he is not too fat to fly.”

English: Director/Actor Kevin Smith at the 200...

I haven’t seen Kevin Smith lately, but in every picture and video I have seen he definitely appears more than just a bit overweight. I know back when I was three hundred and forty pounds, I never thought I was that fat. In my case and in many of those whom I work with, we never see just how overweight we actually are — or in my case was.

There are those who have metabolic and/or underlying medical conditions that cause obesity

The following  statements are not intended for those individuals.

There is a much displayed, self-absorbed logic that implies if one is overweight or obese, that is just the way it is and everyone else will just have to deal with it. I am sorry, I do not agree with that logic.

I do agree that one has the right to weigh however much one wants. I was in the morbidly obese category myself and while I did not say, “Hey I want to weigh 340 pounds,” it was still my choice. Through slothfulness and poor food consumption; it was my choice to allow myself to almost reach the 350 pound mark. So, with that said, if a person is one of the many who chooses an obese lifestyle, then one also must accept the responsibility for the limits obesity imposes.

I, on a fateful day, made a decision to accept responsibility for the self-made mound of flesh and fat I had morphed into and changed my physical condition. I don’t know how much Mr. Smith’s tips the scale these days.  I am aware that he has lost some weight, but claims he will never be thin.  If he would like to ensure that he will never again be fat, will be forever fit and enjoy a better quality of life for himself and his family,  I will make this offer:

I will give up my practice and dedicate one year of my life to help Kevin Smith shed his excess weight and improve his fitness.

Once we agree upon an  acceptable fee then, for that year, he will be my only client. I will relocate to an area of his choosing and assist him in embracing a fit lifestyle.

I doubt he will take me up on my offer, but I make one guarantee, once I get him in shape he will love his new fit lifestyle


Chiropractor, Dr. Joe Leonardi is the author of the life changing book,A Life Beyond Weight Loss.  He is available to appear on any talk radio, internet podcasting or television outlet. He has appeared onWYLN TV -35′s Storm Politics with Tiffany Cloud, WILK’s The Sue Henry Show, Magic 93′s Frankie In The Morning, WBRE’s PA Live, SSPTV’s News 13, Public Television WVIA’s State of Pennsylvania and Call the Doctor; Entercom’s Outlook on Northeast PA with Shadoe Steele, Citadel Broadcasting’s Sunday Magazine with Brian Hughes, Lisa Davis’ Your Health Radio; Jimmy Moore’s Livin’ La Vida Low Carb podcast; Hank Garner’s Podcast, Dr. Robert Su’s Carbohydrates Can Kill Podcast.

Dr. Joe Leonardi also will come and speak to your group; to learn more about his motivational speaking fees and availability contact him at and check out his web site


************The posting that I  write do not apply to those with an underlying medical or hormonal condition.  I advise anyone embarking on a weight loss and fitness plan to have a thorough medical evaluation. You want to be sure that you are physically able to exercise and you don’t have any underlying medical conditions.*************



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