I realised something about myself during the two weeks I spent back home for the holidays. I realised it on two occasions and it pleased me greatly.
I realised it when I read the following sentence written by my 16-year-old self in a tattered old diary: “Getting so FAT, I really need to lose 5kg ASAP”. I realised that now, 7 years later, and probably a bit heavier than back then, I don’t feel the pressing need to shed those kilos anymore. I realised it when I overheard a family member at the Christmas party saying “Looks like Lore gained a bit of weight on the other side of the pond”. I realised I’d stopped caring about others’ judgement.
When I look in the mirror I’m happy with what I see. When I go shopping I’m no longer frustrated that I do not fit into UK single digit sizes. When I go running I don’t dream of a smaller waist, I dream of being able to run just a bit further.
We are constantly surrounded my messages telling us what we should look like, what ideal shape, size or form we should all be pining after, striving for. To make matters more complicated this ideal changes all the time: skinny, toned, curvy. #Fitspo on Instagram. The requirements for having the perfect body are confusing and mostly unrealistic for us mere mortals who don’t have the time nor funds to work out twice a day with a personal trainer. Maybe we don’t fancy chicken and broccoli for dinner every single night either?
A thigh gap or Kim Kardashian’s arse? My own set of legs that firmly touch when standing up and more modest rear-end will suit me just fine thank you.
Being happy with the way you look isn’t about finally achieving that chisseled six-pack, It’s about “you look great” in front of a mirror and actually believing it. It’s all in our heads. Having realised this and being able to appreciate my own personal version of a human body has given me the confidence the 16-year-old me clearly lacked.
Furthermore I think that when you respect and love your own body, you’ll take good care of it. Feed it with the good stuff and make it work up a sweat at least a few times a week. Treating your body right and sustaining a healthy lifestyle should be about feeling good instead of looking good.
I’m not perfect. Emotional or hormone-induced overconsumption of a variety of foods happens sometimes. Choosing another episode of that TV show over the run happens sometimes. Guess what? The world doesn’t stop spinning. My jeans might be a little tight for a while, but I always find my way back to the amount of me that I am comfortable with. And that’s ultimately the only person that your thighs or any part of you need to please: yourself.
Confidence is an attitude, not a number on the scale.
In fact, I don’t think I even own a scale anymore.