For a long time I was running the race to be THIN.
(For most of my life, it didn't feel like there was any other choice.)
As a woman in America, the cultural narrative is loud and it comes at you from all angles:
Thin is healthy.
Thin is attractive.
Thin is achievable (if you aren't thin, you aren't trying hard enough, and you're probably lazy).
Thin is the only worthy goal for your female body.
Thin is measurable (by the number on the scale, by calories in and out, by the size on your clothing tags.)
...And you'll never know if you are thin ENOUGH, so keep hustling.
And hustle I did.
To be honest, I started strength training as part of my pursuit of thin-ness.
But luckily there are are some key differences in the pursuit of strength, that helped me widen my perspective.
Strong is healthy
Strong is attractive
Strong is achievable (this is actually true, any body can get stronger, whereas not every body is meant to look like our cultural standard of "thin")
Strong is also measurable. (By how much weight you lift. By how many reps and sets you do.)
But here's my favorite part:
Strong is relative.
Strong is not one size.
Even in weight lifting competitions, your achievements in strength are measured relative to your bodyweight. For example, an impressive Deadlift for women is 1.7x her bodyweight.
This shifts the focus away from comparing to others, to comparing you to yourself.
Strength training asks us: what can YOU do with what YOU'VE got?
Within weightlifting communities, there's an emphasis on celebrating PRs (which stands for Personal Record).
Because we are all striving for our own personal best, we get to support each other's wins. We don't ask if they are more or less impressive than anyone else's. We allow ourselves to be inspired by each other's successes, rather than feeling like someone else's accomplishment steals from our own.
At our gym there's a PR bell. When you accomplish a feat of strength you've never accomplished before, you get to ring it.
When that bell rings, everyone in the gym stops what they are doing and cheers.
It's really important to me to hold this space dedicated to personal work. To hold a space free of comparison.
A space where we celebrate each other's wins, and acknowledge that success looks different for each individual.
Where we encourage each other to pursue what is personally meaningful to each of us.
Especially for women.
There aren't a lot of spaces like that for us.
It's been incredibly healing for me to spend time in such spaces.
I've finally opted out of the Pursuit of Thin. I hung up my race number.
These days, I'm focusing on what I can do, and how my body feels, rather than what my body looks like or how "big" or "small" my body is. I no longer weigh myself. I don't even spend much time looking in the mirror.
If being thin is important to YOU personally, by all means, pursue it. But check in with yourself, and just ask if thinness is a goal you chose, or if it's a race you opted into by default because it's the cultural norm.
Since I opted out of the thin race, I am more motivated to move my body in healthy ways. I am more motivated to eat nourishing foods. And I like myself a whole lot more.
My health as a result, has improved. (Healthy is also NOT A SIZE. Healthy is completely relative to the individual - but that's a post for another day.)
If you are feeling moved by this email, and you want to start experimenting with moving for YOURSELF and not for a culturally imposed weight loss goal, you'll want to start with Daily CARs (Controlled Articular Rotations).
And I'm including a special offer: If you buy the CARs video, do it, and send me your feedback, I'll hook you up with a 20 minute coaching call with me.
We can talk about whatever you want - what's holding you back, any of the CARs you want to understand in more depth, motivation struggles, your morning routine, you name it. I'm here to help.
>>grab the video by clicking HERE.
If you already bought the CARS video, the offer still stands! Send me your notes and I'll get back to you to schedule a call.
To YOUR resilience,