We really need to see more Dove Campaign Special K type body shapes and Messages- in the Fitness /Health world. If you truly want to reach those who are having serious health risks because of their addiction to food, you have to take a good look at what society , is saying to them. I am passionate about people seeing themselves as a whole being and being inspired versus being guilt -ed or shamed into getting off the sofa. If a person is “guilt-ed or shamed” into getting off the sofa and eating healthy, the person will not stick to a plan and make lifestyle changes. This is a fact.. Page 127 American Council and Exercise ACE Group Fitness Manual “The least effective type of motivation is a form of extrinsic motivation called intro-jection,(Deci & Ryan) With intro-jection people report being physically active because of some external factor suggested by someone else and NOT ACCEPTED BY THEMSELVES..and are likely to experience feelings of being controlled, tensions GUILT or pressure..” The chapter goes on to describe that people have to feel intrinsically motivated- Which does not come from feeling guilty about themselves. Therefore,I vote for inspiration,authenticity and humility versus “what’s your problem” or”what’s your excuse” every-time.
Speaking from a busy stay at home parent’s perspective, (yes I’m busy even though I don’t “work” full time in society’s eyes), the pressure to “do it all”, is unbelievable. There is a major Supermom atmosphere that radiates out over myself and my friends on a daily basis and it isn’t all in our heads. I have yet to see a cover of a magazine regarding Parenting that truly depicts what’s going on in a parent’s life. I get it, pictures of disheveled parents , is not going to cut the mustard;however, I do think the parenting/health/fitness industry could do a much better job in providing an authentic view of how to balance the stresses of life while creating, routines (exercise included!) into their life.
If I had to got back to work tomorrow, full-time, I know that I would not be as disciplined about it as I am today. You know why? BECAUSE I’M HUMAN. You are human. Give yourself a break. I’ll admit that actually have to back off of the exercise from time to time, because I do not want to become obsessed with working out and eating healthy because I do NOT think it’s a good message to send to my children. I do get caught up in the comparison game but I’m much better at stopping that undeniable,self-defeating train-wreck-thoughts of destruction, to realize that I’m doing the best I can based on my abilities.
I do not know the answer on how to reach the masses in helping America fight obesity and/or unhealthy sedentary lifestyles. I think there are some great programs that do attempt to reach all parts of society. I also do know it’s a sore subject and even writing the word obese makes me a little uneasy because I feel like America automatically associates that term with outward “image” and/or “lazy”. That isn’t always the case. You have NO IDEA what’s going on in that person’s life and whats going in their life. You have no idea if they walk 50 miles a day or if the were starved emotionally and physically as a child. We need to stop labeling people and meeting them where they are now so they can find their intrinsic motivation! Food may be their shield and they used it to protect themselves, my goal is to help them find another, healthier shield.
All I know is I want to help people get active and feel good about themselves because I do not want people do die from unhealthy life styles that can easily be prevented by making slow, steady balanced challenges in their life. . It’s NOT ABOUT SIZE. A super. skinny runway model can be five times as unhealthy as a person that may be a little bit overweight on a “medical chart” or worse by “Cosmos’s standards” I used to smoke, drink , and run. Sometimes all at the same time, because I thought I was a freaking rockstar! (insert electric guitar music..) Was I healthy? heck no. Quite the opposite. I’d much rather be 10 to 15 lbs heavier with a little junk in my side trunk then ever go back to being a spindly , spidery crazy-eyed-crack-en trying to run off my the previous nights’ beer calories only to go home to chug Pinot.
My point is, life is not fair, it’s hard, there is always going to be someone that’s better, faster, thinner, more muscular , better hair, funnier personality..whatever… and some of it’s genetics, upbringing..etc. My Dad’s nick name is Spider, so go figure, some parts of my body are natural going to be thinner, whether I eat white bread (gasp!) or not. My sister is tall , I am not. I’m working with what my momma gave me and what I’m trying to give myself! You need to define what a comfortable, healthy weight and size is FOR YOU , your heart and your soul. It’s the whole picture. If you are a size 6 and you want to rob a bakery every day , have major headaches and are miserable, maybe your body is not meant to be that size. If you let yourself got to a size 8, and you feel much better as a whole person, then you have your answer!
This blog is like the ridiculous sweater I bought at Anthropologie a few years ago. It was on sale and the sales lady told me "it looks awesome on you." It's the most bizarre sweater, and whether it looked good on me or not, is highly debatable. Like these blogs, I look at them at say "Yeesh, what was I thinking,," or laugh or bath in their cathartic qualities. The sweater stays for the same reasons.