I was never cheerleader material. Back in high school, I secretly wanted to be one, but was too much of a dork. Borderline nerd. It didn’t help that I was a size 11/12 and the rest of them were size 4 at the largest. The only time I’ve been a “4” was 4T, for “toddler.”
Maybe it’s the spring weather, but it seems everywhere I turn, I hear somebody talking about how fat they are, how crappy they look in shorts, etc. Skinny and “perfect” images hit us from every angle, on TV, in magazines, billboards and radio ads. Where does it end?
Where does it begin is the better question. It begins with us. (This is where the cheerleading thing comes in, in case you were wondering.) Personally speaking, I am my own worst enemy.
I put off becoming a personal fitness trainer for years because I didn’t think I “looked” like a trainer. Says who? Hollywood, who embraces lollipop girls like Lindsey Lohan and Paris Hilton? The media, who bombards us thousands of times each day with unrealistic images? Society, who tells us we need to be skinny and beautiful to be successful? Why on earth do we care what “they” say? Doesn’t being fit count for anything? Do we all really need to look like the airbrushed models on our favorite magazines?
My poor mind used to get battered and bruised from all the mental anguish caused by yours truly. It’s as if I was playing football against myself—tackling, rushing and head-butting me, myself and I. I didn’t need anyone else to do it for me.
Would you ever say to your best friend the things you tell yourself when you look in the mirror? I don’t think so. What would you do if I came up to you and said, “Oh, my God. You’re so fat!” or “Your butt is, like, its own continent!” You’d either slap me, tell me where to go, or start crying. If it’s not okay for someone else to talk to you like that, why on earth is it okay for YOU to talk to yourself like that? It’s not.
The point I’m trying to make amidst all this rambling is that you need to be your own cheerleader. Root for yourself. Part of my job as a trainer is to uplift my clients. “You can do it.” “That was awesome!” “One more rep.” “Don’t stop now.” “You’ll get there.” But who’s going to cheer you on?
Promise me you’ll quit belittling yourself. Life is hard enough, isn’t it? When you look in the mirror, focus on what you do like. When you’re discouraged or frustrated, pat yourself on the back and remember that each of your accomplishments, however small, is a big deal.
One more thing… You look fantastic.
unless, of course, you’re into
that sort of thing.
Rebecca Clark has wanted to write romance novels since she read her first Harlequin Romance at age 11. When she’s not writing, she works as a personal fitness trainer and group exercise instructor, where she teaches Pilates, Turbokick®, Zumba®, and yoga. She makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of 22 years, two kids, a German Shepherd beast who thinks he’s a lap dog, two cats, and a gecko. In her abundant free time, Rebecca enjoys reading, watching Criminal Minds reruns on TV, and doing absolutely nothing.