You may remember a little post I wrote last year here. Well, a lot has changed since then! When I first questioned the relationship between body positivity and working out I honestly did not know what to think and the only answer I could come up with was: no, you do not have to work out to love yourself and yes, you can love yourself and follow an exercise plan. Seems pretty simple right? Well after some significant change in my personal life, here is an updated take on the whole thing!
Last year I lost a considerable amount of weight, and as a recovered bulimic, this felt super weird to me. I was not counting calories or scheduling gym time AT ALL. Honestly, I am not sure of all the things I did last year to cause this change but here are a few: I naturally had a lower appetite, I randomly stopped drinking, and I stopped eating after 21:00. That is it. Maybe more things happened but for the most part I did not do these things with the intention of dropping a jean size. Another random thought: I cut out gluten and dairy simply because I liked a restaurant with those parameters and it inspired me to do the same. My point in saying all of this is that lifestyle changes happen, they definitely affect your body, and it is not necessarily a bad thing to lose weight because you are not going out as much or to gain weight because you stopped playing a sport. Life happens.
The main point I want to get to is that from a body positive perspective, wanting to change something about yourself is not a bad thing as long as you are healthy both PHYSICALLY and MENTALLY.
You should not beat yourself up for gaining weight over the holiday season for example, and if you decide to create a meal plan and hit the gym so you can shed some weight or finally see some abs, you absolutely do not need mental battles along the way. If physical transformation is something you are passionate about, great! If it is better for your body positivity to not think too much about calorie counting or other numbers then that is ok too!
In 2019 I spent more time at the gym and less time stressed about numbers than ever before. I only weighed myself with my doctor, I ate (mostly) gluten and dairy free because I found options that I liked, and I still made time to go out for tacos with friends.
Almost everyone in fitness will tell you it is a lifestyle change and it is all about balance. This is true, but do not forget that all of this starts with loving yourself first, and as you continue your journey, remember to give yourself grace.