Friday, September 27, 2013

Strong is the New Skinny?

So, a few years ago, Crossfit and just general weight lifting became the hot fitness trend for people (women especially).

Previously, we were all super fans of the really skinny, dangerously waif-ish look that all the Hollywood starlets were rocking (to the point of looking like walking skeletons).

When strength and muscles became the focus, there was a LOT of criticism against the super skinny women many women previously admired.

And the catchphrase began "Strong is the New Skinny."

I don't like these kind of catchy little memes, because these issues are so much more important and deeper than they can convey.

Now I am starting to read criticisms of the Strong is the New Skinny theme, as people are ONCE AGAIN trying to emulate a nearly unrealistic body type.

One such article: Strong is the New Skinny, and that's not Necessarily a Good Thing

I, obviously, would prefer women to idolize strong, athletic women who had to eat right and be active to get their bodies rather than someone who just starved themselves skinny. But, at what point are we all going to start getting REALISTIC about our bodies?

Look at all these memes that tout that strong is the new skinny and notice how FREAKING SKINNY all the models are:

And these are just a fraction of the images floating around.

Yes, they are muscular, but let's not pretend that we're not still idolizing skinny. And idolizing airbrushed bodies. And almost impossible to achieve bodies.

The article I posted mentioned how a young woman just desperately wants defined arms, and would go to yoga every day for them. I would rather she want to go to yoga every day for her overall health and well-being!

These women are strong, too:

I just wonder what it would be like to live in a society where what we SHOULD look like wasn't shoved in our faces all the time?

I posted these thoughts not to tell you how you should look or how you should WANT to look... but in the hopes that you will stop and think about the propaganda that is perpetuated throughout our society and how it is affecting you and what you think about yourself and your body. We should all take a step back, be kind to ourselves, be realistic and logical, and decide that our health is the most important. 

I sometimes feel like a hypocrite... because I like to be "skinny" (I don't think I'm quite at skinny, though I am thin now) and I like to be "strong" (well, that's not really a decision I made... I've always had pretty good musculature and if I work out at all, I get definition very quickly... so it was more "This is my body and how it looks, so I am going to learn to love that my body looks strong!"). But I have no misconceptions that I look like the fitness models in the first group or ever could. I don't have their perfect bodies, and it's something I have had to work on accepting.

It's hard when those Strong is the New Skinny memes are constantly floating around facebook, twitter and blogs. I prefer seeing pictures of the people posting who are getting strong - because THAT is real!

Just my thoughts on the matter.

Have a great weekend, my friends, I will be on another hike tomorrow, so will post pictures after!

Namaste <3


  1. Love this. Thanks for this post. It's been on my mind too

  2. I agree. When I began to see those memes popping up I thought, "Those ladies still have a body type that is only a tiny fraction of what most women look like." I'm not saying that their bodies are impossible to achieve but it would take making it your career(as in body building) to have that type of body. Most people don't have the time or money to make that happen. I think it is time for plain ol' HEALTH to be our focal point. I'm not gonna say that I don't want to be fit and trim and that I a goal isn't for me to be attractive to my hubby. But I think that whatever body I end up having from living a healthy and active lifestyle is what I will consider attractive---to me! If doing 1 hour of exercise a day 5 days a week and eating healthy doesn't translate to the type of body in those memes then that is okay. It doesn't make me NOT STRONG. I may still have lose skin and my belly may be misshaped from old cellulite but I'm cool with that. I can promise you that the models in the memes are putting in WELL above average amounts of time at the gym, they eat super clean, and some may even use supplements(legal or not). Their job are to be fitness models. Therefore they will have a look that represents that. I think when normal people see those photos they get an idea that they must emulate these ladies. And if you are like me there is no way in the world that I can hold a full time job, a marriage, raise a child, do church, have a social life all while devoting as much time to working out as the fitness models do. I would love to start seeing memes of regular healthy schmucks like us who make fitness and health happen at level that works for your average person's schedule.
    Thanks for posting on this. It's something that had been bothering me as well. I like that this issue is being bright to light.