The Pressure to Stay Fit

Kindness could be my second name, most of the times! ;- ) I’m the smiley type of person, one that others probably describe as “energetic” or “passionate”. It’s all-in, almost always. But I must admit that I feel a little fed-up today. It might be the preggo hormones striking… although I’ve been tired of sentences like “Fit is the new thin” for some time. You might have seen the picture above on social medias just like I did… This woman is stunning, she has a great body, but I simply wonder why should we need an excuse to not look like her?

My Own Experience

I started running about 4 years ago. I’d say I started slightly before it became real popular. Then, I got pregnant for my first child and gained 55 pounds at it! Only a couple days after I gave birth, I felt it. The pressure. It was there… all around. Don’t blame it on magazines or TV this time. It was in other’s eyes. I was too busy with the baby that I didn’t really care at the time. But a couple weeks passed by and I put my running shoes on. THERE! BAM! It hit me right in the face! It was the new thing. Men and women getting in shape, running in the streets with their perfect outfits, their brand new Ipod exploding in their ears and their high-tech watches calculating every step, every heartbeat, every piece of mile.

At first, it felt nice to see more and more people trying to get in shape, just like me (even though they looked so fit while I was still looking so… fat!). I even cried when I saw women in their golden ages taking control over their life again in the runs I went to with my husband. We could feel the effort, the pain and the proud. I was proud too. Then I got my knee injured and felt the pressure again: “Why are you not running, again?” “But don’t you can swim to stay fit instead?” “Did you try the bicycle? Shelby lost 20 pounds with it!” “My friend has in incredible personal trainer, maybe she could help you out”. I was only looking to get my knee back in shape…

I’m a good advocate of healthy lifestyles. You might have read my other article about my husband’s Ironman. So yes, I try to stay active. Losing these 55 pounds was one of the hardest goals I achieved and it was important for me to do so in order to be comfortable with myself. It came with healthy food and physical exercise. There’s no big secret here. The thing is I saw persons close to me going from an extreme to another. Being and then staying fit soon became some sort of obsession. Going for 8 miles run EVERYDAY just to make sure you stay the same looks exaggerated to me. And gaining 2 pounds over a weekend now results in 2 weeks of intense training and semi-starving portions.

Being Comfortable with Ourselves Should be the Key

I’m sorry, but… What the heck is going on!? Since when a new mom has to be fit 6 weeks after giving birth? And why would she have to be? Can’t she just be comfortable with herself? Why does healthy now mean fit? I don’t get it! Moreover, why “fit” is getting smaller and smaller? What is that pressure all about exactly? And I’m not even getting into genetics reality! Healthy and strong is not directly related to your cut stomach, your tight but or your bumped pipes! And a healthy weight has not much to do with being super thin and cut… Actually, it is as dangerous to be too thin than it is to be too chubby, even if you can bench the record at your gym! 😉

Staying fit and running is the trend. I have nothing against it when it’s done healthily. Let’s just remember to respect who and what we are. Extreme is rarely positive and perfect is a goal impossible to achieve.

Do you feel the pressure to stay fit? Do you think it’s the new trend?

Image credits: Maria Kang, My son and Me, happy! 😉

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