I stay on my fitness horse by reminding myself that movement is a privilege and that the future Me will ALWAYS be happier if I move. The understanding that exercise positively affects my mood has informed my entire fitness philosophy. In fact, improving my mood is typically the primary reason I train.
Instead of enjoying the carefree innocence of childhood, many kids these days are fixated on how they look, comparing themselves to celebrities, models, and other unrealistic ideals. As parents, it's our responsibility to help our kids navigate the tricky landscape of body image with their self esteem and perspective intact.
This yo-yo or extreme dieting may be seen as harmless or even vain but we must recognize it stems from a very dangerous place. Negative body image is the negative self-perception of your body. It is often accompanied by shame; the unworthiness we feel due to our flaws. This combination of negative body image and shame is what leads us to take desperate measures with our bodies.
After the U.S. election, I wanted to call myself a feminist. Especially as friends wept about the uncertain (and certain) future of a Trump America. Still, I can't. Because feminism is hiding too many racists and bigots. People who hear "Be your own kind of feminist" and place emphasis on "your own kind."
Pushing yourself and trying new things are all part of the weight loss transformation journey. It is all about the journey, never the destination. I now know that I can always work on certain aspects in my life and still continue to love myself. Whether it is trying new workouts or meditating, I will always be developing into a better person.
Adopting a healthier lifestyle is an active process; no one can force anyone else -- no matter how much they love them -- to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Your loved one has to be at least interested in having the "health conversation." Health is a process, and in order for long-term changes to occur, the person must want to -- and be ready to -- be part of the process... The million-dollar question becomes, how do you support a loved one's journey to become fit, without them feeling judged, belittled, and criticized?
Body positive campaigns are essential for progression within the fashion community and media. Why? Because they remind us to love our bodies. They remind us the "perfect body" is a hoax. Having been exposed to the harsh realities of the media and modelling from a young age, I think it is imperative to influence teenagers/women/men to love their bodies as they are without changing them.
I was verbally bullied about my weight throughout school. The weight started increasing exponentially while I was in high school. That is when it started impacting my moods and the way I looked at life... I did not want to be around my friends and I started isolating myself. I became physically sick with stomach problems, mentally sick and looked down upon myself. I hit rock bottom.
We all know the benefits of working out and eating well, but when it comes to our health, knowing and doing -- especially doing over the long-term -- are two very different things! Sure, most of us can be dedicated for a few days -- sometimes a few months -- but long-term change is a whole other ballgame.
Get rid of your destructive internal dialogue. You wouldn't let your best friend or child talk badly about their body and self-worth; why is it okay for you to berate yourself? Obviously be honest. Don't tell yourself you are making healthy choices if you're not, but don't metaphorically flog yourself with unproductive self-hate.
In seventh grade, I took a family trip to India and my weight was the hot topic. Family members I hadn't seen in years commented on how "fat" I had become; and when I walked into stores to buy sarees or lenghas, store owners told my mom it wouldn't look good on me or fit. It was blunt, but it was normal.
A mother has gone through two of the most difficult stages in life that require coping with body image, being a tween girl and becoming a mother, both of which involve extraordinary physical changes. So it's not surprising that when it comes to raising a daughter, these very personal experiences are something that a mother draws on, consciously or subconsciously, and that may impact her daughter, starting from a very young age.