This post has been a long time coming. In fact, it’s been in the back of my mind for weeks, months even.
Yesterday, I was in beating myself up because I my body I felt like I wasn’t seeing my strength. I knew what I could do, but why did it look like my body hadn’t got the memo?
Let’s take a step back. Browse through my Instagram feed and you will see and entire timeline of strong, muscular women doing what they do. Being badasses in the gym, on the mountain or in the water. Women that do not look like me. Women that probably will never look like me.
I know that I am not alone when I say that I sometimes find myself comparing my body to these women.
Yes, in my opinion we as a society are moving away from making thin, Victoria’s Secret-type models the ideal body type to putting muscular, toned women on the pedestal. This “fitspiration” movement is just another eating disorder epidemic (orthorexia, anyone?) waiting to explode. There is no difference between this and the idolization of thin, long-legged women.
It’s all about unrealistic comparison.
As you can tell from my thoughts yesterday, I have fallen into this comparison trap. I will admit that I have turned my nose up at girls who want to be thin and thinking to myself that “it’s not healthy.”
But, how am I any better than them? I have found myself striving to be like the girls that I saw at CrossFit competitions, only to be upset when I looked in the mirror and decide that I will never look like them, regardless of how much I can deadlift.
Newflash: I will never look like ANY girl that I see in ANY media. I’m not stick then, and I sure as hell don’t have the body of a CrossFit games athlete. I am me.
I am not 6 foot tall, slender or have legs for days. I am not blonde, tiny or have a flat stomach.
I’m also not less than 15% body fat, ripped as hell or have a butt that even looks flawless even without Lululemon spandex.
Am more muscular than many of my peers. I always have been. It used to cause many tears in my adolescent years.
I’ve never been lanky, and never will be.
I have stocky big ol’ legs that are ironically paired with long arms.
That six pack? Forget about it.
My body jiggles in places that I don’t want it too. I have cellulite. AND I still think my butt looks good in yoga pants.
I am short.
I have hips.
I can’t wear button up shirts because I inherited shoulders that are equivalent to a linebacker (thanks mama).
I will never be anywhere close to the girls in either of the pictures above.
But guess what?
This is my normal. Just how that is their normal. Or how your body is your normal.
I can’t spend my life wanting to look like someone else. Neither can you.
And even though there may be things about my body that I don’t care for some days. My version of normal has allowed me to compete in two CrossFit competitions and two half marathons — not to mention endless WOD’s, hiking trips and explorations around this beautiful world we live in.
My body gets me through every day. My body has done more than I ever thought it could do. It endures double under whips, ripped hands, sweat, tears and blood.
Long story short— We need to stop focusing on what our body looks like and start focusing on what it does.
I don’t care if we are moving away from the “stick-thin-model-type” persona to one where the women have muscles or curves. It is not okay that we are shaming a skinny girl and idolizing a muscular one. It’s not okay that we are saying that one body type is better than the other.
Can’t you see it?
We are going from one extreme to another.
There are thousands upon thousands of body types in the world, all the while we are looking up to only a select few of them.
We all have our own normal. We all have the body types that we are born with. We all have bodies that have strengths and weaknesses. We all look different.
Does your body wake up with you everyday and allow you to do what you love? Then rock it. Rock whatever you do. I don’t care if it’s making killer recipes in your kitchen or running ultras or playing in fresh powder or spending a relaxing day in bed.
Rock your own version of normal, whatever that may be.
** The top 4 pictures are from Pinterest, but when I went back to find the sources I couldn’t find them. Just FYI!**