CREATING A HEALTHIER TOMORROW
According to The History of Fitness, it can be dated all the way back to 10,000 BC, when in order to survive you had to be able to hunt, fish, chop wood. Staying active was mandatory. In today’s society we don’t necessarily need to do these things in order to survive. So, what does fitness mean in the year 2020? Chances are you have an Instagram account, and if you do, you’ve probably seen a post or two about fitness or a fitness model. What are they advertising and is it necessarily “healthy?”
I spoke with Human Foundations Practitioner Daniel Vega who let me in on what exactly is going on in the fitness world. “Most people in our society look at fitness models and trainers as an example of what “health” should look like… This focus that is put on attaining a certain physique instead of improving the body’s ability to move and achieve balance also leads individuals to compare themselves to the models and trainers they see.” Mr. Vega goes on to say, “The physique most people view as healthy is only attainable through exercises that will impede the ability to move well and cause joint pain and compressions over time. These pains and movement impairments significantly increase the production of stress hormones which can lead to many different mental health issues.”
Is what the fitness industry advertising necessarily creating a healthier tomorrow? With social media having a huge platform for what “healthy” and “fit” are supposed to look like, the body type social media is showcasing is only a small percentage of the many different body types that are out there, which creates an insecure mindset for society. This leads to things such as a 1% increase in cosmetic surgery every single year in the United States for the past 5 years according to 2018 Plastic Surgery Statistics Report.
Don’t allow your insecurities to manipulate your body, mind, and soul. Allow yourself to breathe, to be you. Be healthy, which is not a number on a scale, or a measurement of the waist. Being healthy is not about being skinny. It is about taking care of your body. Appreciating your body for what it is is the first step to living a healthier lifestyle. It’s not even about “learning to love your flaws” so much as realizing they’re not flaws. They are a part of you. They tell your story about your heritage, your ancestors, situations that have made you stronger. Don’t cover these up or hide them. Enhance that beauty. Love that beauty. Most importantly, don’t let your beauty be manipulated into thinking it is not good enough just because what you see in the mirror is not what is advertised by society.
Love yourself. Put your health first. Each and every one of us is a part of the women and men of tomorrow. Let’s create a healthier tomorrow (and look and feel great doing it.)