My body is not a self-improvement project

    

It’s been a bit hairy at my paid work the past couple of weeks. I’m walking to work and occasionally spinning inside on my bicycle. I’m in a pretty comfortable groove with my health and fitness. As a stereotypical A type personality I often focus on constant improvement, tweaking the process and looking to improve but recently I decided I’m doing enough.

It’s not that I don’t have goals or am not open to the new, it’s more about being content that I am enough. My round body is a good body and as fitness, fatness and aging play a tug-o-war with my appearance I’ve decided my body is not a self-improvement project.

It’s not easy to identify why I’ve made this change in perspective. I’m thinking it started about the time one cousin said, lovingly, that I look like Grammie. She wasn’t what you would call a good looking woman. She was practical, eccentric and eschewed female gender norms. I’m pulling together a longer post about Grammie soon but she also died at 65 from heart disease.

I look like her and have inherited her risk of heart disease, something my mom and I have in common. To look like family is a gift, to feel connected, to be a part of. I live far from my family so this tenuous connection of resemblance means a lot. It also means my body will look like other bodies in my family. Many are slim and many are round, I definitely take after the round ones!

To try and and be a specific shape or meet a definition of “in shape” feels like a lot of wasted effort for very little payoff.

I’m interested to see what my body will look like over time but I’m slowly letting go of the expectations of what that will be.

I took the above photo on Thursday and thought “Damn! I look AWESOME!”

I’m working hard AND happy AND good with my family. I will keep moving my body through time and space, knowing it will always be different and somehow the same body. It’s an interesting place to be and definitely good enough. 

About natalieh

I'm a self described fat feminist 42 year old mother of two teenage minions who loves her high energy life partner of over 20 years. I love moving my body and sometimes do yoga, triathlons and dance like a fool. My next measure of success will be being more fierce and less fearful as I roll through my 40s.

3 thoughts on “My body is not a self-improvement project

  1. Tracy I says:

    Love the pic. Love women who feel good about their bodies. Love you! ❤️❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Rob says:

    For me as I age I’m seeing benefits of the (pretty minimal) maintenance I’ve done on my body so far. Not self-improvement, just maintenance. I think your activity level will also be looked back on with gratitude by your future self, but you don’t have to do an insane amount or sacrifice present happiness in order to win that gratitude. I also remember with fondness some slothful times (hmm such as right now, no Aikido this morning, it’s Seedy Saturday at Carling Heights today). So, yeah! Here’s to a balanced life!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am so happy for you

    Taelynn Davis

    On Sat, Mar 5, 2016 at 5:01 AM, Fit Is a Feminist Issue wrote:

    > natalieh posted: ” It’s been a bit hairy at my paid work the past > couple of weeks. I’m walking to work and occasionally spinning inside on my > bicycle. I’m in a pretty comfortable groove with my health and fitness. As > a stereotypical A type personal” >

    Like

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