Finding My Own Confidence

Body image, body image, body image! Some people blame the media, the modeling industry, fast food, soda, boredom, working too hard, working too little. There’s always an excuse, and always 5 pounds to lose.
People say that women dress for eachother. How true. I know I am not alone when observing other women’s bodies, clothes, hair, shoes (OH SHOES!!), pants sizes…. The list goes on and on and on. We are constantly comparing ourselves to other women, strangers and friends alike.
In a recent Newsweek article titled Is That Fat Girl Me? this constant comparison between women is discussed. A study done by a neuroscientist shows 9 men and 10 women pictures of overwight people in swimsuits. The women showed a change in the part of their brain involved in self-reflection. This is same change common in brains of bullimics. What calls to some to extreme action scientists think might be an abnormal development of the brain which controls impulive behavior. It truly is an interesting combination of nature vs. nurture and I highly recommend reading the entire article
In today’s media messages, a healthy hefty man is acceptable, while the female standard seems only achieveable through airbrushing, or plastic surgery. “The result is a culture in which women are afraid of even a little fat” so it’s no wonder that from a young age, we learn to hate our bodies.
For me, I have always been at a healthy weight. When I gained a few pounds, it would depress me. I would work out really hard one day, and then be tired for a week, and be dissappointed when I saw no results. I simply gave up before I ever gave myself a fair chance. I would feel hopeless, like I would never lose it (even though it was never hard), people didn’t like me as much. Can you believe that? All that over 5-10 pounds?
I have to say that watching The Biggest Loser was kind of an eye opener. While I think the rigarous exercise may not be the healthiest way for the contestants, I realized how good I have it. Just listening to the contestants psychological problems, thinking they could never do it then seeing them transform really was inspiring. Each day is an opportunity to take care of your body, and the better you take care of it, the better you feel.

It also made me realize that I needed to relax about my own issues and fears, to just work every day to be healthy, and not worry so much about a number on a scale. My mom always taught me how to eat healthy, so I wasn’t worrying about breaking an addiction to fast food or anything really unhealthy. My weakness is that I have an enormous sweet tooth, which is where I know I have to be careful, but learning that all bites taste the same has helped me realize that I can have my cake, and I don’t need a huge piece to be satisfied.

Each year I do the M’lis Detox under the supervision of my friend who is a trained distributor of the product. I know that there are a lot of dangerous detoxes out there, so when doing a detox, you definitely need to know what you are getting into. They may not be for everyone, but the reason I do it, is it feels good to kind of recharge and get in tune with my body. I re-learn to pay attention to my body signals, when I’m hungry, when I’m bored, when I’m thirsty, as well as being more conscious about eating healthy whole foods. The more that you cut out excess sodium and sugar, the less you miss and crave it. That is a great place to be.

All my life I’ve been fairly active, my favorites being dance and pilates.
My favorite at-home workouts are the 10 Minute Solution Pilates Series, and both of the Jackie Warner (from Workout! on Bravo) weight training DVD’s.

When I married my husband, he taught me the importance of weight training. Oh yes, he is a drill sergant when it comes to weight training me! No mercy! But he has taught me to believe in myself, and push a little more to gain that strength.
I have always kind of been into running, but having short legs I never could run very fast. Last year, I trained for my first 5k which was the Women’s Fitness Celebration. After running a whole 3.1 miles I realized… I CAN do this! I went on to running most of a 10k that October. I’m getting ready to run the Race for the Cure 5k this Saturday. Thanks to my faithful Pearl Izumi running shoes, I’ll be shin splint free!

More than ever, I am learning that my worth or success can’t be based on what anyone else may be doing. As long as I’m progressing on my own path, that is what makes me happy.

No matter what, there will always be someone taller, skinnier, bustier, prettier, whatever. No one is perfect, no matter how they may seem.
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2 thoughts on “Finding My Own Confidence

  1. Amen! We will never have that "perfect life" or "perfect body" because we are HUMAN and perfection is unattainable! Yet we keep torturing ourselves so that we can be better, better, better. We need to relax a bit and "accessorize what we've got," (in the words of Carrie Bradshaw). :)I agree that The Biggest Loser is very inspiring. It's amazing how people can transform their bodies and lifestyles once the BELIEVE that they are WORTH IT. Only when we take care of ourselves both mentally and physically can we truly give ourselves to our families and communities. Great post!!

  2. Amen! We will never have that "perfect life" or "perfect body" because we are HUMAN and perfection is unattainable! Yet we keep torturing ourselves so that we can be better, better, better. We need to relax a bit and "accessorize what we've got," (in the words of Carrie Bradshaw). :)I agree that The Biggest Loser is very inspiring. It's amazing how people can transform their bodies and lifestyles once the BELIEVE that they are WORTH IT. Only when we take care of ourselves both mentally and physically can we truly give ourselves to our families and communities. Great post!!

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