Post # 17
- Wedding: October 2014 - Savannah, GA
I’m so sick of the thin-spo and fit-spo crap. Do men keep pictures of other men for motivation? No. Why do women? These pictures are labeled motivators, but they actually just give women another reason they are not good enough in the present. They show if you are obsessive about exercising and restricting your diet you can possibly look like this, but right now you are not worthy of happiness. I’m all for healthy eating and moderate exercise, but not when women are motivated by the appearance of others and not their health. I don’t personally know one woman who looks like they belong in a fit-spo picture and I work with a ton of nutritionists who eat healthy all the time. It is not natural for our bodies to look like that and can only be accomplished with extreme exercise and dieting. Just because a woman eating healthy foods and exercising does not mean she is mentally healthy. It can be the same as any other eating disorder. When your regimen is so strict that you are depressed and upset after missing a workout or eating a carb, I believe that is an eating disorder. Women need to learn that they can be confident and happy all the time. They don’t have to wait until they are a size zero or are able to avoid all evil carbs.
Post # 18
+100 That’s exactly what I was thinking…but couldn’t articulate!
Post # 19
- Wedding: October 2014 - Savannah, GA
Thanks! I actually thought I posted it at work today, but looked back at the thread and it wasn’t there. Pretty sure that was when a client walked in my office (they can partially see my computer) and I accidentally closed my 15 million open tabs…
Post # 20
I agree with PP’s that the top photos do not depict fit bodies to me. In my opinion, fitness is about muscle, strength, ability, stamina, etc. and has nothing to do with bones. I am passionate about sports and exercise, but generally avoid both fitspo and thinspo images (and as @SeaSalt
mentioned, the line between the two can be quite blurred). I was very much under the influence of anorexia and over-exercise as a teenager, and I do not believe it would be healthy for me to expose myself to these images too often.
With that being said, I do notice that I have a very different embodied reaction to images that focus on muscle and those that focus on bones. Many images of women who appear strong and fit make me feel more aware of my own muscles and make me want to move and pump them in some way. When I see pictures of bones or very thin women, I experience a remembered feeling of emptiness and desire for control that was so appealing and yet so damaging about anorexia.
Another point I want to add – I believe that a focus on bones can be dangerous and misleading, as a person’s natural frame and bone structure may have a lot to do with it. My natural body shape is very small on the top half and much fuller on the bottom. Even when I gain a bit of weight, my hip bones and ribs tend to show, while I continue to have full legs and a full butt even at my fittest. If I were to focus on having a thigh gap, the rest of my body would be beyond emaciated by the point I reached that goal. I try to remind myself of this when I become fixated on my so-called “trouble zones,” but it’s not always easy in this society.
Post # 21
Exactly! A “sweet spot”. That’s it in a nutshell. Or moderation, in other words. I wish you lots of luck in your journey! Sounds like you have a pretty healthy mindset going already!
+1 – very eloquently stated.
There is an actual eating disorder called orthorexia that is defined by an unhealthy obsession with eating clean foods and exercising. To the point where you freak out if you’re served lasagna or something “not on your plan”. I personally knew a couple women who fell into this category when I used to do work in the hospital. It’s limiting, tiring and controls your life if you get to that point.
I’m glad I’ve gotten to the point now where I can eat (gasp) Cheetos, and alternate (double gasp) hill walking with jogging for several miles, instead of pushing myself to run every.single.pace for 10!
+1 as well. Bones are not cool! They have skin, muscle and fat on top of them for a reason!
Our culture right now is so polarized. It’s difficult to just be healthy, because that’s not exciting and doesn’t get pushed in the media. What we want (or at least gets sold to us) is amazing 150 lb weight loss stories, women bouncing back from anorexia, thinspo/fitspo everything. In the magazines on one page it’s an add for weght loss pills or muscle powder, and the opposite page is for some new double chocolate cake recipe. It’s like collectively we’ve lost sight of the idea, and power, of maintenance and moderation.
I wish every single woman on the Bee, everyone who comments in these threads, could see how amazing she is on the inside (corny I know) and let all those preconceived notions of what our bodies should be fall away. I wish for those who have lots of weight to lose, that they can see they have the power to do it, and for those who are very thin, that they don’t need to worry so much – about what they themselves think, or what others think. I wish we didn’t need to say those words aloud, or worse yet, in our own heads, “I feel so fat.” I know that’s all very naive of me, but it’s true. We all deserve to feel comfortable and healthy in our own skin.
Post # 22
Wow, I didn’t realize that this thinspo and fitspo stuff even existed. I’m not on twitter or pintrest so I’m not hip to these new #technologies. 😛
Anyway, I just wanted to say that I have recovered from anorexia (11 years ago) but I still have very distrorted eating habits. Since recovering from the disease, I have done some pretty awesome things with my body. I got into running and biking. I ran 2 marathons and I did a half-ironman. And more recently I got pregnant and delivered my baby with no pain medication whatsoever – it was completely natural. After each of these events I looked at my body as this amazing thing that is SO STRONG and can endure so much. Sad to say that those feelings are fleeting and it’s just a matter of time before I’m obsessing over my dress size.
Post # 23
I totally agree with you about everything being so polarized, particularly in the media. It makes it very hard to navigate between when one is being healthy, or too rigid, or not disciplined enough, or too this or too that.
Though I think it’s important to note that some women’s bones may show in some places on their body, and if they feel happy and healthy, that’s okay too. It just may not be a healthy goal for all women:)
Post # 24
Do people upthread not think that fit women can look thin? Bodies with low fat and no muscle don’t look like those images: they are “thin-fat”. Stomach pooch, thin but wobbly legs, ect. Back when I was working out all the time I was never bulky… I looked like OPs pictures. Flat stomach, notacable collarbones and hipbones, firm arms and legs. Besides, most women work out to be thin, not to get ripped, so I don’t know how inspirational pictures of super toned up women would really be lol.
But anyway, yes, I appreciate it. It is a reminder to push hard and not let myself settle for ‘good enough’. Laziness and excuses are the biggest fitness killers and I can’t forget that!
Post # 25
I love working out, and I want to make a career in the health and fitness industry, but I hate the idea of any of these “inspiration” blogs/boards. Every time I see them on Pintrest I cringe. It is personally not motivational at all for me, and I feel like it only leaves women chasing after something they will likely only achieve through obsessive habits. I am average sized woman and I can’t imagine ever looking like that, and I already workout 5-6 days/week and watch my calories.