A long while back in the blogosphere I wrote about Shapes, Sizes and Self Esteem. I wrote about my issues with body image from when I was a young teenager. Big legs, big shoulders, big back and chest (but not in the chesty barbie way). I NEVER wore short shorts. If I did all I could see in the mirror was my man legs (that’s what I used to call them in my head).
Enter crossfit. I haven’t been doing it for a year yet and it has changed the body image issues that I struggled for MY WHOLE LIFE.
I wear short shorts.
Sounds like a miracle exercise cure, right? I must have gotten super lean and strong and started wearing smaller sizes…right?
It just changed the way I viewed my body and food. No miracle cure.
Let me explain.
Through my adult life the fitness industry and the food industry have perpetuated the same message:
Eat low fat. Get “lean” and “toned”. Eat 1200-1500 calories a day to lose weight. Do “fat burning” exercises.
I’ve lived half my adult life exercising like a maniac and eating a restricted diet and the other half binging on bad food. I probably NEVER ate enough to sustain the amount of exercise I did… and my goal was always the same.
LOSE WEIGHT. GET TONED.
I came into crossfit with that same attitude. I quickly realized that my eating habits when in restrictive mode would not sustain my level of activity. Then I started to hear the message.
IT’S NOT ABOUT GETTING LEANER… IT’S ABOUT GETTING STRONGER.
This is the message that I got from my crossfit coaches/trainers.
It took a while to make the switch but as I started to eat to get stronger, I started to see “results”. I could do more pullups, I could lift more, squat more, run faster. I wasn’t getting sick. It turned my world upside down and inside out and then I noticed the by-product.
I no longer cared that my legs were so big…in fact, they were now my most prized possession. Big legs. Big butt. Big lifts.
I wear short shorts.
I don’t drink as often as I used to or eat as much junk because I know it affects my performance in the gym. I eat real food from good sources and I don’t limit how much I eat. I make the right choices because it makes me feel good and strong.
Don’t get me wrong… the years of beating myself up on the scale and in the mirror have left a large scar but I am slowly working out the kinks with the help of some friends. You know who you are.
And maybe it wasn’t crossfit that changed my attitude. Maybe it was me “finding my way”. I’m tired of being my own bully and beating myself up. I want inner peace.
As the fitness industry and food industry continues on trying to sell to the masses I am finally at peace with myself and what I want in life.
I don’t care to live forever… I just want to live well while alive.