It took me a long time to realise I wasn’t going to be 5ft 8, naturally tanned all year round with six evenly placed abs. Telling a 12 year old she’s got a solid build is totally soul destroying when all you want is to look like posh spice.
After a lot of time, tears and a few surgically removed tops (literally two days ago, it was claustrophobic to say the least) I have learnt to love my body in more ways than I knew possible. Walking is something my body allows me to do everyday, I can think and talk and yes my legs are short but I’m still going places, all be it very slowly.
Recently I joined the gym which I put off for a while. I knew I’d gained some weight after reaching a new found acceptance for my body but it didn’t upset me. People join the gym to loose weight, the number on the scale didn’t scare me anymore so why would I go?
Dan wanted to join and the more I thought about it I realised exercise is a celebration of all the amazing things we can do and doesn’t have to be a punishment for things we’ve eaten. Also I want to be able to climb the stairs at work effortlessly so why not. Those stairs are a killer, four years later I still have an internal fight about stair vs lift every morning. Loosing ten pounds isn’t what it’s about for me anymore. I really thought about what I wanted from the gym before I went and these are my three targets if you want some ideas for non weight related goals.
- Be able to do one unassisted pull up because that would be really bloody cool.
- Feel stronger in myself and improve my yoga practice.
- Complete a 5k in 35 minutes.
I’ve always gotten more done when I’ve set a good target for myself but usually ‘goals’ get a bad rep. If you love a bit of organised motivation like me and it works for you personally then do it. We aren’t all the same! Just do you.
All of the above gets us to the question, can we love our body and still want to change it? I can honestly say I really do love my body, but here I am wanting to make it stronger and I think that’s okay because it comes from a place of kindness. If I’m being honest, I think it depends on an individuals mind set. There will always be moments when you have a small set back in self love and it can be really hard to only ever say nice things to ourselves, we are our own worst critics!
Your body is yours to look after and treat the best way you see fit. It’s not my job or anyone else’s to tell you what you want is wrong. But if you can get to a place where you feel grateful for your body, accept it for its uniqueness and all it does for you, hopefully any changes you choose to make will come from a positive place and will give you even more happiness.
If you do want to loose weight because you love and care for your body that’s great and good for you, if you want to be able to run a 10k that’s amazing, if you want a bum like Kim Kardashian’s then maybe check back in with how that makes you feel. But if that makes you feel great? Who are we to judge, your body is yours. Speak kind words to it always.
Lots of love,