Strong is the New Skinny

by Sunday, September 15, 2013

Recently I have read a few different blog posts, articles, opinions, and really look at pictures of what is meant to be female fitness motivation so this post has been a long time coming and I’m not quite sure what type of response I’ll get, but it’s worth the risk to let it out because I really can’t be the only person thinking it right

When online motivation pictures started circulating around more specifically throughout Pinterest I used a lot of the pictures as my own personal motivation and shared with my followers. I also found that I was following a lot of fitness models and bikini and fitness competitors on Instagram for the extra push and motivation. What I saw in those pictures were, strong, fit, focused women and words of encouragement reminders to push through harder each and every day, that excuses were just excuses and nothing less. Then one day I was scanning through Instagram with my 4 year old daughter (she likes to make the hearts on the pics) when she asked, “mom why are there so many girls’ butts on there?” That one question from an unknowing little girl really made me reevaluate what I considered fitness motivation.

First I began unfollowing the bikini and fitness competitors. Let me say before I get blasted on this, that I give competitors the utmost respect because it takes discipline and seriously hard work to compete. I unfollowed them because it was something that was not aligned with my goals. I have no plans to ever work myself that hard, nutritionally discipline myself that much or ever compete so why was I spending so much time following those that do? The bodies of female competitors are not the norm! Please remember that it takes an unbelievable amount of work to get that way and a lot of these women train for weeks and weeks and weeks to get there which isn’t only hard on the body, but emotionally draining as well. Are you following competitors? Are you doing it to match their body style? Are you planning to do a competition in the future? Does it motivate you?

Next, I am ALL for flaunting and showing off the body when you got it. Be proud of it, you work hard so let it show! And here comes in the other side of the coin…. As I search for motivating fitness photos they are generally fitness models and they look gorgeous, fit, strong…. But everyone has a super flat stomach with abs, no stretch marks, no cellulite, and working out in a gym with tiny little shorts up the crack of the ass and a sports bra. I mean honestly? I work out at home so yeah I could work out like that every day but who really goes to the gym like that? These photos are not 100% real!! We as women (especially those of us with kids) need to stop trying to emulate someone that has done a photo shoot because those little insecurities have been wiped out by photoshop. Furthermore, strong is the new skinny- I love the saying too but everyone is always strong AND skinny in those pictures!

The online focus of what women “should” look like and be motivated by is only justifying that you have to work your ass off until you puke every day, restrict yourself from a happy treat meal or allowing yourself to enjoy your food and not be a slave to your diet, while we should be highlighting the positive changes in our own bodies! Be proud of the gains that WE make and set for ourselves. Stop trying to be someone else and look like the fitness model that is in your don’t stop don’t quit motivation picture! Am I saying that you shouldn’t be able to motivate ourself with those? Of course not, if it gives you that push to do more and be happy about who you are then so be it!! But remember that is not the norm.. Scanning throughout Instagram and seeing ass picture after ass picture, not my cup of tea. If I wanted to see that many behinds I would go to a strip club lets be honest. Hopefully sooner or later we can get the media to see that female fitness is not all about abs, cleavage and bare bottoms but inner pride, glowing faces, healthy minds and strong bodies!!