Ladies, we’ve all been there. I know you all have a similar story… Summer is approaching and you start clearing out your closet. You discover those old clothes you continue to hold on to just in case one day you’ll fit into them again. They looked good when you were 16, right? And so it begins again, just like every year, you tell yourself “Maybe they’ll look good this time.” You’ve changed, you have a career (or job), you ran that 5K, you went to the box every week this year, and you don’t survive off of fried foods anymore (at least you’ve drastically cut it down). Then that voice chimes in, that voice that somehow removes all logic from your actions, “I can just try them real quick, and who cares if they don’t fit. I won’t affect me at all, I’m a rational adult!”
And so it begins… you step into those pants/shorts, or slide that top over your head. They don’t fit, what a shock! Those pants that use to slide so perfectly on and now can’t get passed that derrière that you worked so hard to build. You’re going to pull a straight Hulk move if you move your arms at all because your shoulders have developed to the point where you can link pull ups and put 100 pounds over your head. The pants or top is thrown to the ground and you immediately revert to that horrible attitude. Instead of recognizing how strong you’ve become, you begin to try to rationalize why you got so “big” and why you aren’t the size you use to be. What’s next? Usually stepping on the scale. Why not crush yourself with more self-hatred? Ladies, we have to stop criticizing ourselves so much!
Women are by far the most harsh about the female body, especially of their own. Media seems to have won this battle over the years: even though we are learning to love our new bodies, those images of what a female body should be is constantly portrayed across all media. It’s incredible how much the media can influence how we feel about ourselves. It gets placed in our subconscious and when life is affecting us we forget those hours at the box we’ve spent working so hard and earning every inch of ourselves. We start nitpicking pieces of ourselves… if only my butt were smaller, my thighs were thinner, my stomach was slimmer, etc. If only. If only what? Honestly, have you ever asked yourself that? What exactly would change if you were “thinner”? Would you even recognize it or would you find some other imperfection?
It’s a vicious cycle; let me tell you, I’ve been there. I use to do hours of cardio and eat the fewest amounts of calories I could each day just to weigh a certain amount and to fit in a certain size jeans. The result? I was tired, weak, and unhappy with myself more than I ever was at a heavier weight. Did I get a better job? Better boyfriend? Did life finally fall in to place like it was suppose to? Not even close.
Looking at the women at our box, I am more impressed with the personal bests and goals crushed every day. I see a group of successful, intelligent, beautiful, strong, and inspiring women. When you hear your classmates talking about themselves negatively or asking “why don’t I look like her?” remind them of how beautiful they are. Remind them that we’re the women changing the perception of beauty. It starts with us. We’re all adults, we have more important things to use our mental energy on; self-loathing should not be one of them. Imagine if you refocused that energy into your relationship, job, friends, a book, anything. Imagine the change that would come of it.
Just remember, as you get stronger you build muscle. Will you ever look like “Arnold”? Not unless you do steroids. But will you go up a few pounds and maybe a size in jeans? Yes, that’s a definite possibility, but remember the blood, sweat, and tears behind that incredible body you’ve built yourself. That’s yours to claim and no one else can take credit. Your body is a representation of your dedication, strength, and perseverance. Never let a scale or a pair of jeans define your worth. It’s what your body can do, not what your body looks like.
Check out this blog from Crossfit Invictus. And don’t forget: Smile often, it’s contagious. 🙂
-can drop and reset. You do not need to keep your hands on the bar.
Toes to Bar
Overhead Squats (95,65)
Level 2 -(75,50)
Level 1 –(55,35) 20,15,10
Focus: Lower Body