I started Crossfit because I wanted to see results. I initially just wanted to lose weight and do a pull-up (because its just awesome!). As I continue to progress I realize that I strive for the bodies of elite athletes that I see at the Crossfit Games, but I fear that society will not accept that person.
As a society we espouse the necessity of being healthy and fit, but somewhere along the lines we, especially women, have created a range that limits someone from being “too fit” or “too healthy” because it’s not considered normal. Women in particular seem to think that being strong is a form of being too masculine or “manly”, but the way I see it, being strong is the only way we can become more equal. Today fit girls are battling for gender equality, but they are having to battle both genders because of this range women have created. I often get questioned, “you don’t want to look like that though, right?” when showing friends pictures of my favorite athletes, and I am having to defend these strong women and defend myself to justify my fitness goals. My answer is always yes, yes I would love to look like those girls. Those women are my idols.
Because of crossfit I have a new appreciation for what the human body can do. When I look at an athlete, any athlete—rookie or elite, I see their body as a story. Their stories are depictions of their fitness journey. Each muscle represents the time they spent in the gym, the time they could have spent with their families or friends. Each muscle shows a story of their sacrifices,their struggles, their successes, and of their future battles. Because of their stories I am able to relate to them. I am able to acknowledge that their battles are similar to mine, that their struggles have been like mine, and that their successes have been as great as mine. So instead of body bashing these beautiful men and women for being “too fit” or “too healthy” we should be celebrating their journeys that they so openly share with us… because one day I hope that that is something that can be celebrated for me.
Being strong and having muscles should never be something looked at negatively. As a society we should embrace the idea that being fit and healthy is almost always associated with having muscles and being strong. As a gender, women should stand together and be proud of their sexy big quads or their growing traps because if we don’t embrace them… Who will?
Share with me your own stories and experiences in the comments!