I still remember the first time I discovered stretch marks on my thighs.
I was ten years old and so embarrassed that my body seemed to just keep growing.
𝘐 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘧𝘪𝘵.
𝘐 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘢𝘵𝘩𝘭𝘦𝘵𝘪𝘤.
And suddenly I had even more proof of that.
I quickly learned to pick out allllll the things I hated about my body, stretch marks included.
But I’d also like to argue that that hatred of my body also taught me my biggest lesson.
I decided I was going to learn everything I could about how to make my body shrink.
So I started to learn about nutrition.
Started to move more.
And after YEARS of destroying myself to lose weight I finally learned balance.
𝐈 𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐧𝐞𝐝 𝐰𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐢𝐭 𝐦𝐞𝐚𝐧𝐭 𝐭𝐨 𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐜𝐢𝐚𝐭𝐞 𝐦𝐲 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐠𝐭𝐡.
My ability to move.
And I’d like to argue that thanks in part to those stretch marks I am the person I am now.
I became athletic.
I learned what it meant to be dedicated.
I made a living out of sharing my passion for fitness and nutrition with others.
Now those stretch marks are a sign of my strength, acceptance for my body, and are a tiny little piece of why I continue to work hard today.
𝗪𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐢𝐬 𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐮𝐬𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐨 𝐩𝐮𝐥𝐥 𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐭 𝐚𝐛𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐟? 𝐇𝐨𝐰 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐫𝐞𝐟𝐫𝐚𝐦𝐞 𝐢𝐭?
What you see…
Another online influencer who has everything going for her.
What you don’t see…
The hours of workouts, staying late, pushing longer, and working on her weaknesses.
The time spent planning, perfecting, branding, and creating content to share.
The meal prep, my fitness pal tracking, and turned down drinks to get closer to her goals.
The Saturdays spent working, sending messages, planning, organizing, and preparing for the week.
The 40 pictures taken to get the one perfect shot.
The struggles she will never talk about on social media.
Always remember for every picture you see, there are a billion things you can’t see
I am not naturally athletic.
I gain weight easily.
I have a screwed up relationship with food.
I struggle with anxiety and depression.
I spent years hating what I saw in the mirror.
I have acne.
I have a slow metabolism.
I am probably worried about something as you’re reading this.
Appearances will always be just that… appearances. No one’s perfect around here. Stop expecting yourself to be. 💛
The absolute WORST thing you can do is compare your own progress to someone else’s.
I talk to my ladies all the time about how challenging it can be to see others losing more weight or inches than them.
Truth is it is so important to remember we all start from different places.
We all have different bodies.
We all have different lives.
We all change differently.
And there can be sooooo much more happening than just the physical changes you are able to see.
Your mindset may be healthier.
You may be faster, stronger, or breathing better.
You may feel happier.
Your clothes may be fitting better.
Your skin may be clearer.
Your energy may be better.
Remember that your progress is your progress.
Focus on becoming a better version of you.
Just because someone is stronger, faster, or thinner doesn’t mean your effort isn’t as valid.
Work on your own goals for yourself. Progress will come. ✨
I started my first diet at 10 years old.
It took me 7 years to finally lose the weight.
It took me 3 years of unhealthy extremes to shrink down to a size 00.
It took me 3 years to gain ALL of the weight BACK.
It took me 4 more years of battling my body; crash diets, intuitive eating, counting macros, low carb, cleanses, detoxes, and more to stay exactly. the. same. weight.
Then for 4 years I learned BALANCE.
I found strength.
I ate kale AND cookies.
I hated my body, wished it were different, all while trying to embrace it, but never stopped trying.
And I found peace (most days 😉 )
It took me 31 years to learn to feel comfortable in my skin.
Reality is you will forever be a work in progress on your journey.
Never stop growing.
Never stop improving.
Never stop EVOLVING.
Just keep swimming.