As Summer approaches, you’ve probably seen countless ads promoting products to help you achieve a “beach body”.
The funny thing is, if you have a body, and go to the beach, then you have a beach body!
The aforementioned is just one of the messages we are bombarded with, making us believe our current physical state is inadequate, or needing of “improvement”.
Each and every body is so. beautifully. different….
And size/shape doesn’t always correlate with health/wellness.
A 200 pound person may run a faster mile than a 150 pound person.
A 150 pound person may be able to lift more weight than a 200 pound person.
It’s all variable.
Personally, I have (and still continue to) struggle with body-image.
As a multi-sport athlete growing up, I was able to get away with eating whatever I wanted and burning the calories at the practices, games, and/or tournaments I had each week.
After I stopped playing sports around the age of 17, and started college, I started working out.
When I exercised, it was for “aesthetic” purposes. I wanted to shrink myself. And grow muscle.
When the results didn’t come quick enough, I gave up.
Now, as I sit roughly 20 pounds heavier than my “average weight”, I have been confronted with a choice: to hate my body and look at it with disgust, or to embrace it and do all I can to make it feel better, and more energized.
So, when I do make it to the gym, I exercise to celebrate what my body CAN do. Not to punish it.
Eventually, I recognize that making “better” choices is so that I can feel better from the inside out, not to look better.
I believe improving body-image has to come from a place of brutally honest self-awareness.
I acknowledge my flaws:
The extra weight in my upper arms. My never flat stomach. My cellulite on my thighs.
But I also acknowledge what my body does for me:
Allows me to move.
Allows me to work.
Allows me to hug my loved ones.
Whatever size or shape you may be, embrace it. We only get 1 body during this life. We must learn to reject the messages we are bombarded with, forcing us to hate our “home”, and our “temple”.
It’s okay to love your body exactly the way it is.