6 years ago, I was at my fittest and created 2 fitness groups on Facebook Flab-u-Less and TeamFitForevs. Cringe! at the names.
Setting cringe aside, I’d like to share a summarization of that journey.
I recall young, fitter me, wanting to share my newfound knowledge of fitness, my progress (hola progress pics), and the programs that helped me achieve goals I never imagined was actually possible. I miss her!
Not everything about her, but definitely the drive and determination in her. Gosh, and that energy!
I don’t miss how she started her journey because she disliked how she looked. Ugh, she was really focused on her looks instead of feels. But I do miss how she was more motivated than today.
Fast-forward to today: She’s at her heaviest. Everything she learned and worked so hard to accomplish seems as if she never put in the work to belong to the coveted fitfam. But she did put in the work, but has nothing to show for it now. She simply, let herself go. And no, I’m not talking about that George Strait hit. She did not “let herself go to NYC a week at the spa, came back knocked out pretty,” type a way.
She bought the lies that self-love means to love oneself no matter the weight, shape, or size. And yes, self-love can be about that, but it’s way more.
SELF LOVE does not mean neglecting your health just because you love yourself at every weight. Note to Misinterpreters: don’t do your thing here. Yes, you can love yourself at every weight. But self-love is loving yourself beyond your weight. Plus, loving yourself does not mean/should not mean letting yourself go. The verb here is used as an act of neglecting yourself and/or health. I’ll say it again, letting yourself go, letting yourself grow bigger is NOT an act of self-love. Hope y’all heard me in the back. If not, hopefully one day you realize it. And if you need that reminder, I’ll continue to saying louder as many times needed, because I know I will def need it from time to time. And if you happen to be in the room and take heed to my words, that’s good too.
Sure, what you’re doing is accepting yourself just the way you are. Spoiler alert, you don’t have to go Bruno Mars on yourself every single time for every single thing. I don’t hate to break it to you, I’m actually here for the honest truth even when it seems harsh so I’m going to break it to you: Sometimes you shouldn’t accept yourself when it poses a risk to yourself or others (but that’s a whole different topic -that I’d love to tackle another day/another series.
Plus-size body acceptance/positivity, fat positivity, or whatever terms you refer to it are not self-love. It isn’t self-love because it can cause health issues in the future. It’s breathing problems. It’s not being able to stand for long periods of time because your ankles cannot bear your weight. It’s low energy levels; daily. And so many other things I wish I knew before falling prey to the misconceptions being fed to us that it’s okay to be FAT.
But just how there are misconceptions to it being okay to be FAT there are some for obsessing over being FIT. Things like if you ain’t fit, you ain’t it etc…
Take it from me. 6 years ago, young fit me was all about fitness because if I wasn’t fit that would mean I would fall on the other side of the spectrum. A dread of younger me. Honestly believing that if I didn’t look fit, I was fake fit and not worthy of belonging to the fitfam.
2+ years ago, I went to that much dreaded other side. I followed body positivity influencers that preached that being fat was a lifestyle that shouldn’t be looked down upon because it is considered self-love.* Slowly, I started adapting the same mentality. At first, I was digging it, feeling it. Loving me; accepting me. Every. Single. Inch. of me. Growth? Embrace it. I love me, let me be. Let me continue indulging and not feeling guilty. I love this. I love this. I (pauses for air) lo–(grabs more air) –ve this *breathing heavily*
My health was compromised greatly. How can that be self-love if it is leading to destruction.
Talk about going to both extremes. And because of that I have newfound knowledge. An acceptance that I was wrong, but I will not stay there. I will do what it takes to better myself. And a little fire inside of me wanting to share this newly acquired knowledge to anyone struggling or anyone who is interested in hearing me and/or interested in building a healthy(ier) lifestyle. Guess some things don’t change. I still want to share with others things that can help. Only this time, I’ll do it from a different standpoint. Not the snobby looking down at you for not making time to workout and def not as the one who lets herself believe lies and excuses for being unhealthy.
I’m proud to say, today, it’s not about belonging to either of those two sides. Today, it’s about my health; my wellness. The in-between. Why? Because striving for healthy screams self-love. It’s about wanting to feel good as opposed to looking good. But hey, if the looking good follows, I’ll welcome it. I just won’t obsess about that this time around.
I’d also like to add that, I’m restarting the group on Facebook. Only I’m changing the name to something less cringe. Introducing: hola health!
I’ve neglected you, but I’m going to set healthy goals and build a healthier lifestyle.
*Disclaimer: Being fat should never be looked down upon, it should instead be looked at as a way to better oneself.