Is it our image?. . .
The colour of our skin? Definition of our jaw line? Hair colour? Waist size? Height? Weight?
As women we are bombarded with the pressure to be healthy. But how is healthy supposed to look? And do we match that image?
In the future I will be posting blogs dedicated to fitness routines and exercises. Upper body workouts, leg & booty toning, et cetera. Before I even go near that I want to speak my mind on what I believe being healthy is.
There is an ongoing debate on what “healthy” looks like. Is there one person on earth who is the definition of “health” for us to follow from example? Are you healthy if you fit into a size 2 dress, or a size 22? Can you be deemed healthy only if you drink green smoothies? Or is there some breathing room for sweets too?
Most of the time the definition of “healthy” is associated with a thin, tall, tanned skinned woman in a itty bitty bikini. Now, do you have to meet all those expectations to be deemed healthy? No. Does that mean the tan skinned woman who is tall and thin is unhealthy? No. Healthy looks different on every body.
Healthy is as much mental and emotional as it is physical. You could eat fast food for every single meal for years and mentally be healthy and happy, yet physically unhealthy. On the other side of the spectrum you could eat green smoothies and tofu every single meal for years and be physically fit, but still struggle with body image confidence and stress causing you to be less healthy mentally and emotionally.
Being healthy physically is something I very much enjoy and am pro-active at. Yet there are times where I am less healthy in my emotional wellness due to a lack of confidence, regardless of my physical health. It happens! I am an adult and still struggle with this from time to time. It is not something you can simply grow out of. However it is something I continue to work on. Lacking confidence is no easy mindset. At this very moment I am having a hard time with liking the body I am in and the emotions in my mind are telling me things like; “Wear a wet-suit to the beach this summer!”, “No one wants to see that!”, “Seriously? You work as a fitness instructor?”. I can go back and forth from seeing myself and singing “I’M A GROWN WOMAN!!!” to “YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT!!!”. Polar opposites. Its normal. But it shouldn’t have to be. Emotional wellness is a constant tug-of-war. Its worth fighting for.
Oh goodness me. . . Rachel the rambler. . . Lets get back on track here. . .
Health is mental, emotional and physical. Because of the message the media constantly sends us, we are taught to believe that we are only healthy if we are tanned, skinny, toned, and tall. Again, this does not mean that the model used to showcase the companies idea of healthy is unhealthy. She may be unhealthy because she is starving herself to be thin enough. Or she may in fact be that size naturally and takes good care of herself.
Media is one of the main sources of women being unhealthy. It showcases unrealistic expectations which we believe are mandatory to follow. We obsess over it. And the more we feel bad about ourselves, the further we get from actually being healthy. Media doesn’t encourage you to be healthy. It encourages you to feel worthless because your body isn’t the same as the woman modelling on the cover, so you should buy all their products so that they can make you be “front cover worthy”.
Its sad. Women are struggling every single minute of every day because they are haunted by the wrong idea of what being fit and healthy looks like. We need to re-wire our brains to laugh at medias idea of what a healthy body looks like because when you think about what being healthy really means, the example they give us is ridiculous.
So what does healthy look like? Oxford Dictionaries defines “healthy” as “In a good physical, or mental condition; in good health.”. Being healthy is associated with words like “happy” and “confident”. We need to take care of our bodies by giving it good fuel and exercising to help maintain mobility and ability. Likewise, we need to take care of our mind also. Make sure it gets the proper fuels that keeps it running smoothly, and don’t go near the fuel that is bound to make it breakdown.
So in short, media has no clue what healthy is. Being physically, mentally and emotionally healthy looks different on every body. I don’t want any of you to think that (based on pictures I will be posting in the future for exercise routines) my body is your body’s version of healthy. Do you get how awesome your body is?! Billions of people on earth, and your body has its own unique version of what healthy is! I think that is pretty darn cool! My goal is to inspire women of all ages to be happy and confident with the skin they are in. And so I encourage you to embrace your body’s beautiful version of health and happiness.