All About ME! · Happiness · Health · Weightloss.

Weight Loss, Body Shape, Blah, Blah, Blah…

It’s an age-old debate that’s probably gone back for longer than we can imagine; the back-and-forth that surrounds what is considered to be aesthetically pleasing in a woman. For most of my life, it’s been targeted at fashion magazines and the media in general for touting ‘as-skinny-as-possible’ as the ‘ideal’. I’ve seen many a story about how this designer or that designer is using walking skeletons in their runways shows and how we’re creating generations of kids who refuse to eat.

Just recently, I’ve noticed social media getting in on the act with several photos doing the rounds concerning body shape and body image. Here’s a couple of them:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The image on the left is being posted with captions like “I wish I lived in a time when this was attractive” and the photo on the right speaks for itself. Another example of this latest trend is the focus on actresses such as Christina Hendricks who, if you don’t already know, looks like this:

The lady in the top left and Christina Hendricks are both gorgeous, there’s no denying it. But, do people really think that this is in ANY WAY more achievable than the skinny girls at top right? Let me tell you this – it’s not. Both of these women are voluptuous but that’s not down to diet or exercise (okay, it might be a bit down to diet and exercise). What you’re seeing here is GENETICS. Do you know how rare it is to find a true hourglass figure? Christine Hendricks and the lady above are both blessed in that they both have an ample bosom and a round bottom. Neither carries any weight on their face and very little on their arms or mid-sections. Unless they both spend hours in the gym doing only arm exercises or sleep with a facial Slendertone on, it’s doubtful that they managed to do this on purpose. 

Now, let’s talk about the skinny girls. How about, they’re just naturally skinny? Granted, the one in the middle is very thin, but there are people in the world who just are, no matter how much we bitch and moan about it. The problem here isn’t the fact that some people are skinny and some people are curvy, it’s the pedestals they’re placed on. I read recently that Christina Hendricks is so fed up with interviewers asking her about her body, that she actually has her assistant pre-warn them that she won’t answer any questions on the subject.

I haven’t seen any magazine stands in the past few days but I’d bet my last tenner that every single one aimed at women has a headline featuring some sort of ‘New Year, New You’ ‘How to Lose 15lb in 10 days’ diet and exercise plan, and I bet they’re all coupled with a photo of a 21-year-old model who’s been in hair, make up and styling for hours then airbrushed to within an inch of her life.

I supposed I’m thinking about all of this because I do have a lot of changes to make in the New Year. I need to lose a considerable amount of weight and, most importantly, I need to get healthy. But, no matter how hard I try, I’m not going to look like a 50’s pin-up. I’m not going to look like Christina Hendricks and I’m definitely not going to look like a runway model. I’m hopefully going to look like a slimmer, healthier version of me, a 28-year-old woman whose belly has carried a baby, whose hips have been used for balancing a toddler on, whose arms have lugged a million loads of washing, whose face has the beginnings of laughter lines and who would be happy just to be able to play netball again.

I’m not aiming for magazine perfection – I’m just aiming for a better version of me and I think if everyone did that and ignored the so-called ‘ideals’ we’d all be a lot happier.

10 thoughts on “Weight Loss, Body Shape, Blah, Blah, Blah…

  1. I think that everything said made a bunch of sense. However, what about this?

    what if you were to create a awesome post title? I ain’t suggesting your information isn’t good,
    but what if you added a title to maybe grab folk’s attention? I mean Weight Loss, Body Shape, Blah, Blah, Blah…
    | Mum’s the Word is kinda plain. You might glance at Yahoo’s front page and
    watch how they write article titles to get people interested.
    You might add a related video or a picture or two
    to grab readers interested about everything’ve written. Just
    my opinion, it might bring your posts a little livelier.

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  3. Wonderful post!

    Hear hear!! I have a friend who is naturally a twig for want of a better word (and one she calls herself!). She’s been teased with the “anorexic!” tag all her life, yet she has no issues with food, and heck has been that naturally extremely thin frame since I remember her back in primary school when I was 6 and she was 7. She struggles because of it too – not just the stigma and the name calling. She struggles with exercise, she struggled when pregnant with her child so much that she only ever had one whilst longing to have more, knowing her petite thin childlike frame couldn’t handle another pregnancy.

    I’m by no means hourglass myself. I have pretty okay sized boobies, but I have giant ribs and shoulder width. I have big hips and bum part of the hourglass, but not the waist. My thighs are naturally huge – they’re not even fat, just muscle really. They’ve gotten more toned with the exercising I now do (mountain biking/hiking/pole dancing) but they’ll always be big. I’m short too… so the big chicken thigh legs are stumpy. I hate my body. My belly is big. I have IBS so it often looks 6 months pregnant big! I struggle with clothing as it has to have “give” to allow the IBS bloating to come and go. But that’s me. It’s what I’ve been given, and I’ve KINDA made peace with it? I certainly feel better about myself now at 31 than I ever did in my past, despite me currently being at my heaviest. I’m still a size 8-10 but the fats all on the belly. WIsh it spread around as then I’m sure it’d just look better and I’d just be a size 10 or so which would be fine! But alas no – straight to the belly it goes. But again – I’m me. This is me. I’m pretty healthy apart from the IBS, and well… there’s folk out there with worse health issues than my body issues!

    I can only dream about being true hourglass… being a bit taller… not having IBS and a belly that can pop out like its 6 months pregnant without warning… being naturally slim… belly just popping back after having a baby…

    My son is 9 and has body issues. He is a little tubby I give you that. But he isn’t fat. Just has some belly on him, that I’m sure he’ll grow out of. Many lil boys do. But he has gotten names for it. He is teased. He is ashamed of his body and tells me “Don’t look at me!” and covers himself up with his hands… He is ashamed and embarrassed of his body and that started when he was 8. He tells me not to even look at his face as “I’m hideous!” This worries me… he is a boy. A boy, and still he is teased and suffering because of what is deemed acceptable or not by his peers – other CHILDREN.

    It’s a BODY!!! YOUR body. It’s the greatest machine you’ll EVER own. That’s what I tell my boy.

    Gosh, the tears are in the eyes now…

  4. YES! Everything you said with bells on! Everyone’s vision of beauty if different anyway, some people like voluptuous women, some like skinny, some like somewhere in between, etc. Variety is the spice of life and all that jazz. We need to see a variety in the press not *just* larger women or *just* smaller women, but a mixture so that our children grow up knowing that they are just great the way they are

  5. Love the post. Yup, I´m one of those girls… freakish metabolism, at most a size 12 after 2 babies and sitting on the sofa eating bags of Doritos, and a slim size 8 with moderate exercise. But..and it´s a very big but… the only way for me to achieve the curves that apparently are much sexier would be drastic surgery.
    Unfortunately my natural shape is “Walls Sausage” and there is simply nothing I can do about it…. So I try to just choose the least sausagey clothes I can find and add a bit of padding where it´s most needed. And smile an awful lot so the focus is on my pearly whites lol!!

    One of the most annoying (and hurtful) things is that a lot of people often make negative comments about me choosing to eat well or skip dessert or to go to the gym. They don´t seem to understand that being naturally slim doesn´t mean naturally healthy… I exercise regularly – even if it is just for 5 minutes – because it is (with a few other tricks) the only way to control the very horrible and painful symptoms of Raynauds without strong meds. I skip dessert (except dark chocolate..because really, who could turn that down) and giant helpings of carbs because my insulin is ever so slightly uncooperative. I turn down that gorgeous goats cheese because I´m allergic and I know from experience that I will regret it for the next 24 hours. Etc etc etc.

    Much like people who are struggling with their weight I try so very hard to stick to what I know is better for me… it´s a pain in the ass if Im honest. Ít´s hard staying motivated. it´s nearly impossible to steer clear of panini and pizza and fish n chips. And it´s a damn sight harder when people tell me I don´t need to because I´m “skinny enough”… It´s like they think I´ve been sucked in by the magazine ideals and they are trying to help me break from it. It´s weird. But when I ignore those people and focus on the positives and stick to my diet and exercise regime, the results are unbelievable. I mean mindblowing, and measurably different. Every day is better than the one before.

    So anyway….if you don´t mind following the journey of someone who´s desperately trying to eat well and exercise for health gains instead of weight loss, I´ll be blogging about it from January!!

  6. Oh my goodness I love this post! I do think the media are guilty of using mostly too skinny models rather than a nice balance of curves girls too, but I do hate this constant comparison rubbish like in the above pics. As you quite rightly pointed out – I know naturally very skinny women who hate having no bust that would be mortified by the curvy pics. My aim for the new year is about getting fitter and healthier. My Mum and aunts both died recently and far too young. Fitness and diet should be about the bigger picture: being healthy.

  7. This is exactly what annoys me about the photos that get shared around Facebook. If we’re not happy about the image of the ideal woman we see in the media, what is the point of sharing another image of another (albeit less skinny) ideal woman instead? Why don’t we just try to lose our obsessions about what we should look like and do something more useful instead?

    There’s also something to be said for the theory that we idolize the body image that’s hard to achieve. The 50s came straight after WW2 (rationing, more physical lifestyles, far fewer luxuries), so women were slimmer then and the curvy figures at the top of this post represented a lifestyle that most women (and men) didn’t have. Lifestyles today make it difficult to stay stick-thin, so that’s the ideal we dream of. And marvel at anyone who has ‘made it’ despite not fitting into this ideal.

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