Respect Your Body: How being body positive helps in fitness

The  never-ending obsession with  weight loss has driven dieters around the world to new extremes – ranging from a liquid based diet to the new trendy celebrity diets that  promise desired results in weeks. The perennial popularity of these fad diets reflects an insatiable hunger to lose the kilos and with little effort, despite the advice from the medical community that slow and steady wins the race.

Fans of celebrities and avid watchers of fitness gurus on the  Internet may have given rise to fitness enthusiasts. But this is not always the case. Some of the diet plans we read online are unhealthy and are not  approved   by nutritionists. Most of these fad diets help to lose weight but might cause hair loss, depression and health problems in the long run. However people aspire to look like these slender and fit celebrities and emulate their extreme weight loss routine , turning a blind eye to the team of fitness and  beauty experts who are responsible for the celebrities body image.

I did realize the importance of body positivity and about why I should and value my body  despite the way it looks. But once  surrounded  by mirrors , fashion magazines and giant advertisements where  I  needed to be a certain  body type to wear trendy  clothes. The gym fitness centres and beauty industry  uses  these tactics to profit of our insecurities. . Negative body image can put people at risk for dangerous health outcomes from  eating disorders  and low self esteem .Body positivity therefore, is a good mantra to follow. But it is not just acceptance for people who are larger in size but also people with all body types – from the  lean to chubby.  When you put body positivity and fitness together it will not only help to regain a good body image but you will get a sense of happiness  from it as well. Do not measure your  worth by the numbers on a scale

Maintaining  a healthy  mindset of your body can help you have a happy and healthy lifestyle in the long run. Don’t work out or exercise to earn food or make up for the calories you gained while binging on  crisps  on a lazy Sunday. Remove thoughts of rewarding yourself with an ice cream  after running miles on a treadmill  or in a park. It can drain the joy out of   your  healthy routine and demotivate you to think it is meaningless. If you take good care of your body inside and out then  it will know  how to deal with indulgence and excesses.

Focus on how you feel not how you look. Don’t get attached to a certain number for a goal. This taps into mindfulness, which focuses less on appearance and more on exercising for internally motivated reasons such as health and mood benefits. Express gratitude of feeling alive and fortunate of your physical capabilities to exercise. Remove negative thoughts and replace them with appreciation for your uniqueness. Challenge  yourself when you can and back off when needed. Use exercise and your health and fitness activities to release stress. Adopt a healthy lifestyle not to lose weight and conform to beauty standards in society but to reduce the danger of diseases and health problems.

Above all, do it for yourself and not to please others!

Marzuqa Kazi

I am a post graduate student and an avid music and film lover . I have a keen interest in exploring new things .