As a young girl, I would have hated this picture.  Now I love it.

 

(Psssst! If you’re “late” to the challenge and just getting started, that’s OK too! Just go at your own pace!  Start with this blog post and scroll to the bottom, and make sure you have what you need to complete the challenge and fill out the 10 questions you need to fill out before you get started.  Then you can take it day by day at your own pace!)

Recap

Welcome to Day 18 of the Love Your Body Challenge!  Hard to believe we are almost 2/3 of the way through the challenge.  I’ve gotten so much positive feedback from you all about how your lives have changed since Day 1, it’s so rewarding and exciting for me.  So thank you for participating!

Yesterday’s reason to love your body was:

“Because it’s connects me to an amazing groups of individuals – women.”

I discussed how we all search for community and belonging, and how the bond we share as women is absolutely incredible and unmatched.  Most of you agreed. Here was one beautiful contribution:

“I have the most amazing women in my life and I couldn’t be more grateful for them. Each one teaches me unique things about myself and who I want to be as a person.

My mom teaches me how to be calm, patient, completely selfless and forgiving.
My sister teaches me how to relax and take life a little slower.
My best friends teach me how to laugh and focus on what is truly important in life.

I’m thankful for amazing family I married into also.

My mother-in-law is generous beyond words and my sister-in-law has helped me find the fit girl inside.

Both have helped me find the girly girl inside too. Yeah, this body of mine has certainly connected me with some incredible women, and I am thankful that this challenge has helped me focus on that and not take it for granted.” – Wendy

I love it when I can tell that a reason really resonates with someone.  Thank you for sending these in, and keep them coming!  You never know… I might just feature your comment!

And now, Day 18.

 

Reason #18 To Love Your Body

18. Because it’s the perfect combination of feminine and masculine, for me.

I remember being a young gymnast and looking in the mirror pulling my hair into a ponytail and being positively disgusted by my arms.  I could see my biceps bulging in the mirror and I was convinced that I had the arms of a boy.

I can also remember looking at magazines like Oxygen and thinking that the muscular women on the cover looked WAY too muscular.

As a young girl, I would have hated this picture.  Now I love it.

As a young girl, I would have hated this picture. Now I love it.

Oh how times change.

After being in the fitness industry in one way or another for over 10 years, I’ve come to appreciate my well-muscled arms, defined legs, nice wide back, and my round and solid glutes.  In fact, it’s these very characteristics of mine that make me feel uber-feminine!

In fact, I sometimes forget that many people in the world consider strength and muscle to be a primarily “masculine” trait.  To me, it’s a positive human trait.  Being strong and carry sufficient muscle mass shouldn’t be about your gender, it should be about your health and longevity.

But I digress…

I’ve come to the point where I absolutely love feeling strong, and love that my body looks muscular and defined.  It’s just right, for ME, and that’s all that matters.

Mantra:  “My body is the perfect blend of masculine and feminine for me, and that feels good.”

Repeat this (to yourself or out loud) 10 times right now,  10 times during your action step, and 10 times before bed.

Action step:  Take 5 minutes to write down the things that you do in your life that make you feel whatever level of femininity feels good to you.  Maybe you don’t like feeling very feminine, and that’s OK.  Maybe you’re a super girlie-girl, that’s fine too.

For me it’s a combination of lifting heavy weights, wearing beautiful dresses, taking charge in my business, and being pampered by my boyfriend.  All of those things contribute to me feeling very feminine and comfortable in my own skin.

That’s all for today!  See you tomorrow!

FIND DAY 17 HERE

FIND DAY 19 HERE

8 Responses to Love Your Body Challenge – Day 18

  1. Kristie says:

    I’ve commented before that I’m kind of built like a warrior, but with some balance, I feel like a warrior princess. My body is the perfect blend of masculine and feminine for me, and that feels good. When I go to the gym, I go to sweat and grow. I do not wear makeup or prance around as if I’m really there to meet people. I’ve gotten some strange looks when I’m on the erg, rowing for my life, trying to improve my split. I absolutely love rowing and don’t mind that I’m a dripping sweat, hot mess after a session. I give it my all, even if it means “sweating like a man”. Even after all that, there must be something girly about it, because I got asked out at the gym this week. I’m wondering if it’s a mere coincidence that since Day 1 of the challenge, I’ve purchased two dresses I normally wouldn’t have, wear more sleeveless tops and got asked out. I don’t think so.

  2. Rachel says:

    In Day 17′s post I commented that I didn’t really have much of a female community, however what I forgot to mention is that finding Girls Gone Strong, Molly’s website, Jen Sinkler and others has started to give me the community that I didn’t think existed for me. And a big part of that is that I’ve always viewed my strength and musculature as my “masculinity” but now I’m realizing how much my femininity plays a role in that and see that so many other women out there embrace that attitude. I used to wear old baggy t-shirts and soccer shorts to the gym, now I go in fitted tanks and shorts that emphasize my arms, back and legs. I don’t do this to get attention from others at the gym but because I love that it brings out the girly side of me yet balances it with lifting heavy weights and the abnormal amount of sweat I produce!

  3. Diane Grady says:

    “My body is the perfect blend of masculine and feminine for me, and that feels good.”

    I was doing a class Wednesday morning at the gym, and we were rotating machines in intervals. The girl who was following me said multiple times during the 45 minutes that I was a beast, and she didn’t know I was lifting those weights. That made me feel awesome. I walked around with my head a little higher that day.

    I take a lot of pride in my ability for weight lifting, and I live for the day when I finally burn enough fat that all that definition I know I have can be visible. My calf muscles are starting to look rather nice. :)

    I wanted to say thank you for this challenge, I had a gain this week, and because of all the work we’ve done here, instead of being angry at my body and myself, I analyzed the past week and looked at where I could make changes. I made an action plan instead of wallowing in guilt and self-defeat. Thank you.

  4. Stephanie says:

    “My body is the perfect blend of masculine and feminine for me, and that feels good.”
    When I was in high school I was a sprinter and ran 200m and 400m, I was good and I LOVED it. Although I was embarrassed by my large and muscular legs. I would look at photos of women in magazines and think, why can’t I look like that??? Well at the age of 32 I’ve finally realized that I am a well built woman, the “ideal” that is portrayed to young women everywhere is rarely attainable. We do not walk around with our arms, legs, tummies, butts airbrushed to look smaller! I’m so proud to be at a point in my life where I love my muscles but I also love to be very feminine. Wearing a fun dress or leggings and a cute tank top are some of my favorite outfits. I have to admit at one point in my own personal journey I thought, what if I get too muscular? Now I see how far I’ve come and I am the perfect blend of masculine and feminine in my opinion, which is the opinion that counts the most!

  5. Hilary says:

    Truth be told, it did not always feel good to have a body like mine: one that (I thought) was too hairy; curve-less; completely unfeminine; and that sweat like a pig. When I went to an endocrinologist in my early teens and was told that I had slightly elevated levels of testosterone, I was mortified! I never could have imagined that one day, I would consider that an asset!

    Having more testosterone that the average female means a lot of positive thing to me now. For example, it means I have an easier time gaining muscle and losing fat; I can lift heavy and often; I have a healthy metabolism; and I have a very healthy sex drive! All these things make me, ironically, feel very feminine. I’ve learned to do amazing things with this body of mine that doesn’t fit into the mold of a “traditionally” feminine body, and I’ve discovered that even elevated testosterone won’t keep you from developing killer curves once you embrace deadlifts, kettlebell swings, and posterior chain-dominant resistance exercises! So there’s hope for us boyishly-shaped girls yet!!!!

  6. Giselle says:

    So important reason!
    I think we are told most of the time what femenine/masculine should look like & is supposedly, when it actually is something completely subjective to all of us!

    I love being able to get hard workouts & being told that I’m strong (& feel that way indeed!), while after that I can style my hair & change my clothes feeling pretty & confident.

  7. Wendy says:

    I feel beautiful when being super girly with my 3 daughters, being a tom-boy sometimes with my oldest daughter, when my girls look at me and tell me I’m beautiful when I get dressed up, when I dress up for a fancy event, getting my hair & nails done. But, the most feminine I have ever felt was when I gave birth to my babies and got to see them for the first time. There is no greater gift a woman has than the gift to bring life into the world.

  8. Melissa says:

    This resonates strongly with me. Having been told, in the past, by the man in my life, that I wasn’t feminine enough not only hurt, but was confusing as well. How feminine is feminine “enough”, and enough for whom? Well you know what? I’m feminine enough for me. End of story. ♡

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