Uncomfortable Zone

I’m not sure if it’s because of my Taurus tendencies (or Kapha tendencies, for Ayurveda nerds like me) but I love to feel grounded and close to the earth. Thus, inversions where both feet are off of the ground TERRIFY me. Although logically I know I’m physically capable of certain inversions, my mind prevents me from fully exploring those poses.

Everyday I try to step out of my comfort zone. I hurdle into the unknown in hopes of slowly overcoming fears and weaknesses to only emerge with peace and strength. Whether I ask for a cute guy’s number, run (bleh.), cook an unfamiliar meal or travel and create new adventures, I learn more about myself with each experience. 

Understanding inversions will be on the top of my to-do list this summer. How will you step outside of your comfort zone this week or these next few months? How will that help you realize your goals?

Remember, baby steps!

 

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The Balance Between Healthy and Obsessive

Any extreme is bad. How can you tell if you’re creating a healthy or unhealthy habit? Here are a few questions to honestly ask yourself.

  1. Genuinely ask why. Why am I doing this?
  2. Are the intentions setting me up for success or failure?
  3. Are the means to obtaining my goal in service to me or not?
  4. Is the time, monetary and energy investment worth the cost?
  5. Do I beat myself up when I do not follow the regimen needed to attain my goals?
  6. Do i deprive myself of things that make me happy? (i.e. seeing friends, getting enough sleep, “me” time)
  7. Is this something that I genuinely enjoy, or is it something that I feel obliged to do?
  8. Am I being true to who I am?
  9. Is my mind completely consumed with this?
  10. Am I happy?

When writing this list I had a few contexts in mind. Sex every night versus celibacy, overeating versus under-eating, excessive exercise versus no exercise, giving too much versus never giving anything.

I cannot stress the honesty enough. It’s one thing to censor your speech in conversations with others, but its another to avoid the truth in your own consciousness. Sit in the mirror and answer these questions candidly if necessary.

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From Skinny to Fit II

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My friend, a fitness manager, once said that most people have a little screw loose that drives them to pursue a career in fitness. As strange as that sounds, he’s right.

In my case I had depression and anorexia or orthorexia in high school, but labels are irrelevant. Essentially, I played two sports with just enough food to energetically feign a smile and conceal my intern battles.

Read more of my story here, or read my first STF post here.

I posted this photo on Instagram (body.culture) and got an overwhelmingly positive response, which I appreciate so much. As the caption says, “I’m wearing floral skirts differently nowadays. I’ve progressed from malnourishing my body to fueling it, from physical weakness to strength and from discomfort to confidence.”

When I see the girl that I used to be, I feel sad for her. I wish I could help her and tell her that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. She seems sad, alone and lost. However, the girl on the right drastically contrasts her qualities. That girl loves herself fully.

If you’d like to talk, please email me at bodyculture.us@gmail.com

If you’d like to follow my journey follow me on Instagram (@body.culture)

Victoria’s Secret “Perfect Body Campaign”

My friend brought this article to my attention and I think everyone should give it a read. Essentially, Victoria’s Secret created a new ad campaign branded with the tagline “The Perfect Body.” This slogan appears under beautifully photoshopped Victoria’s Secret models. Although these models have gorgeous physiques that they work hard for, that does not give VS the right to deem it the perfect body. By giving these thin, beautiful, genetically gifted women the title of “perfect” it makes women with other body shapes feel inadequate. Perfection alludes to the idea that this is the quintessential look for every person; we must strive to be this ideal in order to be accepted.

This is not the case.

This emphasis on aesthetic perfection from the media is damaging to young women. Everyone has a different body shape, genetic makeup, and fitness level. Their goals should be tailored to their lifestyle and culture. Shame on VS for making any woman feel less than beautiful or worthy.

Sign the petition here because “we would like Victoria’s Secret to apologise and take responsibility for the unhealthy and damaging message that their ‘Perfect Body’ campaign is sending out about women’s bodies and how they should be judged.”

If you’re on instagram hashtag #iamperfect to retaliate against this campaign.

Overheard in the Dairy Aisle

The father picked up a handful of yogurts and turned to his young daughter. “See sweetie? Sugars are bad for you. This has too much sugar, this has a little less.” The little girl actively scrounged the aisle for a yogurt with as little sugar as possible, receiving verbal praise for every good find.

I wholeheartedly believe that eating nutritiously stems from educating at a young age. This event seemed like an integral teaching lesson until the father directed that his child eat less sugar “to stay skinny forever. Being skinny is very important as you get older.”

That urked me.

From my own experience I know that my superiors’ superficiality, and judgement of me based on a scale or types of food that I ate, unhealthily tied my self worth to my diet. This ultimately damaged my relationship with food and largely contributed to my anorexia in High School.

Children are so impressionable. They look up to the older, cool cousin or their smart, wise guardian and hang onto their every word absorbing the information intently. I think telling children to eat less sugar for aesthetic reasons like staying thin or pretty, rather than for nutritional reasons, like disease prevention, could damage a child’s relationship with food.

Just thoughts from my own experience.

From Skinny to Fit

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As I’ve received more and more positive feedback from my instagram and blog (thank you guys!) I’ve felt more comfortable talking about my journey: where I came from, why I started and how proud I am of my progress (read my background story here).

My instagram caption read:

“Transformation Tuesday’s a thing right? Left is me in high school; definitely wasn’t fueling my body properly and I was fatigued and weak on the daily. Right was taken about a month ago; I’ve learned how to eat for my workouts and feel so much happier and energized in my new body!”

Although I’ve had this photo compilation for weeks I didn’t know if I was going to share it. To me, it represents my inner and outer strength. My friends and family either didn’t know I had an eating disorder at the time, or merely suggested I eat more (which was too obvious to be good advice).

This before and after photo represents the culmination of the positive people I’ve surrounded myself with, the knowledge I’ve attained from health and wellness classes and the strength I’ve gained from overcoming these seemingly impossible obstacles.

I can honestly say that I feel happier now at a healthy size 10, than when I was a hungry size 00.

Image from my instagram: srollz