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31 DAYS OF MOTIVATION: Define Your Fitness

Define Your FitnessIsn’t it funny how opinionated people are about body weight. “she’s too skinny”, “she’s too fat”, “she’s too muscley”, “she’s too lean”, “she looks like a man”, “she doesn’t even look like she lifts weights”.

I could be having a totally fat day (or month! lol) and people will feel the need to remind me that my fat day would be their skinny day. Does that make me feel thinner? No. Do I instantly feel dynamite, fit and happy? Not a chance. Do I still feel fat and crappy? Yep. Are my jeans still too tight? Yep.

Too fat, too thin, too confused

I remember one time, a couple of years ago, a company wanted to hire me to be a fitness model for a celebrity workout series, and another company wanted to hire me for a infomercial. In the same period of time, one told me I was too lean and muscular, and the other one said I needed to lose 15lbs. I had to laugh. I admit, at first I didn’t laugh at all. I was totally frustrated. I found myself dieting one minute, and trying to add some mass the next. I was on a fitness rollercoaster ride and how I felt about my weight was determined by what others thought. Then I realized I just needed to be me. I needed to be at the weight I feel most comfortable, and not worry what others thought.

body type

weight stereotypingThe issue of judging and stereotyping body types applies to everyone in some way or other – and it will likely happen to you too. As you diet and strive to reach your goals, it is not uncommon for people to tell you you’re getting too skinny, or to remind you how happy they’d be if they were at your weight. Another issue is people may judge you for caring about your body and health – maybe they think you are being selfish. They may judge you for the time you spend in the gym or how often you run. Some people perceive a healthy person to be vain or conceited. At the same time, fitness fanatics can come across equally judgmental.  As Johnny Depp playing Donnie Brasco said, “forgetaboutit”. What matters most is how YOU feel.

Don’t let people define fitness for you. You are the only one who knows what you have to do to feel your best and to do what you need to be healthy and happy. So set your goals based on that – not one anyone else is doing or thinking. Not what you think the scale should say or a magazine may tell you. Define your own fitness this year.

Body Type

Miss Skinniverse Contestants: Where’s the Beef?

If you are going to compete to be crowned the most beautiful woman in the world, I guess it’s understandable that you would need to look perfect – but is skinny perfect? I’m not talking about Miss Universe winner, Olivia Culpo. I’m talking about pageants in general, top models, and even plastic dolls that teach women you have to be THIN it to WIN it.

Barbie dolls

When I looked back at prior pageants, you can clearly see judge’s standards get higher and higher – and skinnier and skinnier. Look at the how beauty has evolved and how the woman’s “ideal body” has changed over the years.

1950 Miss Universe bikini

miss universe bikini

swim84

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326487-miss-universe-2012-contestants-dazzle-in-swimsuit

By looking at these photos, that’s not all that has changed. The 2012 contestants (pictured above) posed poolside in Vegas in more provocative poses – and look more like Victoria Secret models than roll models. Of course I am SURE many of these women are just as beautiful on the inside as the outside, but unfortunately first impressions are important – and I’m not sure they are sending the right message. And, if this is what these girls looks like now, what will women look like in 2020? How much skinnier and sexier can they get?

Barbies to Mannequins

black_mannequin_female

So, I may sound like a bitter old hag that never weighed less than 120lbs (expect maybe in middle school), and I admit, I sat on the couch eating my pistachios thinking “I am a complete fatso next to them” – and I have a pretty health self-esteem. But, what if I didn’t workout and I had no one to lift me up and let me know my weight is OK. Seriously, I’d probably take up bulimia.

Truth is, this is nothing new. Skinny models are everywhere you look. Hosting TV shows, modeling in magazines, starring in films and advertising products. But is this healthy? I don’t think so.

Fortunately, reality TV and the paparazzi has turned real life people (musicians, athletes, actresses and reality stars) into today’s top models, which has given us a little more reality when it comes to bodies. There are also more stars working out and getting fit than ever before, but skinny still exists and Barbies still sell.

It seems there is no real middle ground in America – it’s like people are either really fat or the are really skinny. Which is funny, does a heavy country really want to see a bunch of bony girls modeling clothes. Seriously – after I go shopping, I always leave feeling like a Barbarian after comparing clothes on the mannequins to the same clothes on me. It’s really an unhealthy message. No wonder women are twice as likely to become depressed as men. We began our childhood comparing ourselves to Barbie, and now compare ourselves to the skinny headless mannequins.

Bonnie vs. Barbie: Body Comparison

barbie-vs-reality

To put things into perspective, if Barbie was my best friend (well, let’s just say she wouldn’t be. I’d have to hate her with a body like that!), look how we’d compare if Barbie was also 5’9 like me…

Bonnie: 140lbs
Barbie: 110lbs

Bonnie: 38″ chest
Barbie: 39″ chest

Bonnie: 28″ waist
Barbie: 18″ waist 

Bonnie: 38″ hips
Barbie: 33″hips

Bonnie: Size 9 shoe
Barbie: Size 3 shoe

Barbie’s BMI is 16.4, which, according to a doctor, would be considered anorexic.

That is a really REALLY scary thought! I doubt very seriously we’d buy Anorexic Barbie if it was titled that way, but that’s what little girls are playing with for hours on end – an anorexic doll.

I don’t think my opinion will change beauty pageants or modeling agencies, but I do think putting the facts out there can change people and help encourage women, and their daughters. Girls need to know that Barbie is not realistic, and women need to just focus on being THEIR best – because THAT’s beautiful!

Fit for the Crown

Miss Universe, Olivia Culpo

Congratulations Miss USA, Olivia Culpo, for your victory! You are a beautiful woman!!  Miss USA wasn’t always thin. Once a chubby kid, Olivia now follows a healthy diet and exercise routine. While she is thin, I could tell by her bikini body that she was not skinny fat (like many of the women I saw last night on stage) – but indeed fit and healthy. I was right! Keep it up Olivia! Read more on Miss Universe’s diet and exercise routine in the Examiner.

Everyone was truly stunning lat night. Just remember ladies, little girls are looking up to you and you have the power to be a positive influence …or a negative one. You may not have won Miss Universe, but you don’t have to wear the crown to make a difference in our universe. 🙂

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