When I was outwardly considered the most fit, I wasn’t healthy.
I meticulously counted macros, spent hours at the gym, turned down invitations to social gatherings, lacked life balance and focused mainly on physical aesthetics and not bodily function. I didn’t realize that most images seen on magazines and advertisements are of paid models/athletes that tanned, dieted and depleted their body of water so muscles become more visible. Many develop eating disorders, body dysmorphia, infertility, metabolic damage, depression and caffeine dependency from unnaturally low body fat, lack of real food and an unhealthy sense of worth based on how they looked. It’s a hard environment to leave because the fitness ‘athletes’ you resonate with online, the personal friends you pushed out of your life, the insecure people that covet the same ideals and now surround you – all normalize your obsession with fitness.
Not every ‘fit’ person is like this, but many are.
In my early twenties I wanted to be on the cover of a magazine, earn my ‘pro card’, get sponsored by a supplement company and build thousands of followers who admired (and desired) my hard earned physique. I’m not sure why I wanted those things; I just followed what many other fitness colleagues around me desired. When I experienced my first (and only) paid photo shoot and watched fitness ‘role models’ posting nearly nude pics every day on their social media accounts, I knew I would sacrifice much more than sweat at the gym to be supposedly successful in the fitness industry.
I remember the anxiety I felt at family gatherings where a lot of food was present. I would inconveniently start diets on holidays or vacations. I began hating instead of loving physical pieces of myself.
That’s who I was – I was a person in pieces.
I wasn’t a body, a mind and a spirit. I became just a body. I valued a bicep, a vein, a number on a scale or a dress size. I wanted so much to look fit rather than BE truly healthy. Health is balance, vitality and strength. Health is being mindful, at peace and living in each present moment. Health is focusing how your body operates and not so much how it looks. What does it do? Do you get adequate rest, digest properly, and lack headaches or chest pain? Can you climb stairs with ease, touch your toes without strain or carry your children to bed without breaking your back? Does your hair shine, is your skin glowing, are your nails strong? These are all indicators of good health.
When I started focusing on eating well, exercising, drinking water, enjoying wine, being with friends, resting and prioritizing moderation, however my body manifested in the process, I chose to love it. I loved it when I was plump prior to kids, pregnant and now pleasantly agile.
Fitness comes in all sizes, shapes and ages. Sometimes it has varicose veins, stretch marks, cellulite and excess skin. Everyone has their own story. Some didn’t want to be a fitness model, maybe they just wanted to not feel the bullying they felt as a child. Some overcame cancer, others dealt with divorce. In the story of our lives it’s about loving yourself in this process of becoming your true self.
That is what No Excuse Moms are about.
We are the leaders of our home. We are raising the leaders of tomorrow. If we want change, it begins with us. The moment we start writing our own story, we become our own Hero.
I appeared on the Dr. Oz show recently and was surprised by my cover models based out in Fort Meade, Maryland!
They won the cover contest amongst our NEM groups. Find a free workout location near you HERE.
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