Body Positivity & Gym Locker Rooms

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So, I recently joined a local gym and I’m pretty excited about it ;)

I’ve been stagnant in my fitness routine for a while and I’m stoked to mix it up. I will be taking weekly yoga and group exercise classes, swimming laps, and doing some cardio and weight lifting.

While I was in the gym locker room, though, I had an interesting moment…

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It brought back all these memories of high school dance team practices and P.E. classes and all the self-doubting thoughts I used to experience as a young woman.

There’s more I could be doing to look good. I need to work harder.

I’m not as beautiful as she is.

Why does my skin suck so much?

I need to lose weight and tone more.

I wish I could change my body.

Wow, I look ugly.

What’s wrong with me?

It was sad thinking back on the old version of me that wasn’t confident in my body!

I feel like this is all too common for women of any age – we talk down to ourselves. Our inner critic is harsh, unforgiving, and unloving. We compare ourselves to other women. Self-deprecating, negative, untrue beliefs bubble up to the surface.

I’m grateful to say that while I was at the gym this weekend, I looked in the mirror and thought, Damn, girl, you’re looking good! For so many years, I’d been nit picking and finding reasons to be unhappy with my appearance.

Now I look in the mirror and I see a beautiful, confident, strong woman.

I see myself – my whole self. Not just a body. My spirit, my soul, my personality, all of it.

And I realized—I want all women to feel that sense of self-esteem and love when they look in the mirror! I want all women to feel beautiful, and to know their worth. We all deserve that ;)

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In the spirit of body positivity, here are 5 mantras to try the next time you find yourself talking down to yourself or making comparisons.

Body Positivity Mantras

1. When you’re cultivating gratitude: I appreciate my body and all of the badass experiences it allows me to enjoy in my life.

2. When you just crushed some gym goals: I’m a beast!

3. When you’re working experiencing struggle: I’ve got this. I refuse to give up.

4. When you see your smile and that sparkle in your eye: My confidence is beautiful.

5. When you’re remembering to prioritize self-care: I’m the most important person I know.

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Also, 5 ideas for boosting your body confidence—try these small steps this week to help you feel like a million bucks:

1. Set your goal for the week (maybe it’s running 3 times) and reward yourself with a new addition to your workout wardrobe. I’m a big fan of the Catalyst sports bra because it’s comfy and functional.

2. Notice, when you glance in the mirror – where do you look? Are you quick to stare at a part of your body that you don’t feel confident about? Can you refocus your gaze to meet your own eyes in the mirror, or see your beautiful shining heart?

3. Take a hot Epsom salt bath in the evening. Light a candle. Tune out from the world. And, in the calm, notice how your body feels. Notice sensation. No judgment, just feeling. See if you can cultivate a sense of awareness and acceptance of everything going on with your body in this moment.

4. Write down your current goals. What are the top five most important things you’re doing in your life right now? How do these things make you feel beautiful inside and out?

5. Open up to a friend, colleague or coach about how you’re feeling about your body. Ask for encouragement if you need it. Ask to be held accountable to meet your goals. Laugh and ask for a hug or a high five if you’re needing one!

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Sending a heartfelt Namaste to all you beautiful women out there who are working to cultivate body positivity. Keep it up and know that I see you and love you!