Last week marked International Women's Day, and it left me with some time to reflect on Feminism and Fitness. Fit is a feminist issue complicated like many other issues involving gender and it's an interesting one particularly to me being in the Fitness industry. I have women coming to me day in and out, old and young complaining about and trying to change their bodies. This puts me in a bit of a predicament, do I go along with these clients wants (as in clients always right) or do I work with them more on body acceptance, learning to appreciate their bodies capabilities etc.

I personally focus and promote self love but I see a lot of individuals in these industry who are very much of a "you could be better camp". This is not calling them out, or faulting them, we live in a society where we are obsessed with making the female body leaner, more toned and those who fit the mold or adhere to that are rewarded so well. Habits that quite resemble eating disorders, body dysmorphia are rewarded with trophies; the perfect butt, abs are rewarded with thousands of Instagram followers and contracts to sell products, sell certain exercise regimes, basically selling "a better you".

If you look on instagram for example, there are millions of examples of transformation tuesdays showing a before and after photo of an individual. This sets us up to associate the before as undesirable, bad, unhealthy, not fit and the after as all the positives. Now, I have a bunch of times looked through these and seen so many amazing, capable bodies in the before photos; bodies these individuals were ashamed of. This makes me sad, because these women shouldn't feel shame or inadequate ever. On the flip side to this there are also thousands of amazing stories of individuals losing a lot of weight, who were previously incredibly inactive. depressed, at risk for many diseases and are now making much healthier lifestyle habits which I love to hear!

My passion in life lies in getting people to make those changes, eat balanced (not clean),  get stronger, and lower their risk for diseases but the problem I have is the fitness culture is placing the worth mostly on physical appearance. There are so many badass fit individuals out there who can outlift me, outrun me, are more flexible than me but their body type doesn't fall into the norm of what "fit" looks like. We as a society need to shift what a "FIT" body looks like, those individuals who are lean, muscular, and taut are not the only ones deserving of our admiration, fitsperation and respect. 
So instead of having the sole focus of exercise to "be skinny" "be lean" "be muscular" "get jacked" etc why not set goals like: run faster, bike farther, lift heavier, gain more flexibility, gain more confidence, feel like a motherfucking badass. Let's do that.