Skinny vs. Attractive vs. Healthy

Normally, this blog is about food, recipes, products I like, etc, but I also like to discuss health, nutrition, and body image from time to time. Let me know what you all think about this subject!

Does this dress make my butt look big?

Last week, I was having a conversation with my boyfriend after I got home from work. He was still at the office, and I remarked that I had left all of my laundry at his house and I didn’t have any non-workout or non-PJ shorts to wear to dodgeball. (Now that I’m injured, I still go to watch and yell at the refs cheer.)

T-Man suggested that I should ask my roommate if she had a pair of shorts I could borrow. I chuckled to myself and told him, “Nice try, but there’s no way I could fit in her shorts.” As any good boyfriend would, he immediately responded with a barrage of compliments about how I have a great body, how he really loved how I looked in my work outfit that morning, how I’m soooo thin, and the like.

I paused and thought to myself, “By admitting that another girl is smaller than me, should that be interpreted to mean that I’m saying I think she has a better body, or I’m not attractive?”

The answer in my head was no. It’s just a fact: my roommate, who is amazing and adorable BTW, is a couple inches shorter than me and naturally has a much more petite frame. I may not have as small of a frame (these hips don’t lie), but thanks to my weight loss after college, I think I’m in the best possible shape I can be for my height and body type. (That would be 5’5″ and pear-shaped. For the record, my weight varies between 123-127 lbs. Not really sure at the moment, thanks to my cast :-P)

See? That sucker is huge! But not stopping me from working out!

However, I understand why my boyfriend went on a mini-crusade to reassure me of my va-va-voom. As evidenced by a ton of thinspo (thin + inspiration = thinspiration = thinspo) blogs around the internet, a lot of girls are dying to be skinny. It’s constantly on TV, in movies, books, you name it; girls don’t declare that they want to be healthy, they want to be thin. Whenever my friends mention wanting to lose weight, they never say they want to be toned or have muscle, they just say they want to be smaller or skinnier.

So when I declared another girl to be skinnier than me, I can see how T-Man’s first thought may have been, “She wishes she were that skinny…ENABLE COMPLIMENT MODE.” In his defense, I do often complain to him about feeling fat, which may be why he rushed to reassure, but my “fat” feelings are usually only the result of overeating or eating crappy food, and feeling bloated and stuffed because of it.

I guess what I’m trying to get at here is that comparing your body to other girls’ (smaller) bodies, especially those of people who you are just never going to look like, is futile. Pinning or blogging photos of Victoria’s Secret models is not setting a goal, it’s lying to yourself about an unrealistic dream.

Plus, they get a lot more help than us normal people anyway:

Now, I’m not knocking on skinny chicks (of which I usually consider myself one). More power to those VS Angels, their bodies kick ass. But rather, I’d like to say that I’m loving of all body types and sizes and shapes, as long as they look healthy and their “wearer” is proud of them.

Be the best you you can be. Such a cheesy sentiment, but I think it’s fitting for those struggling with body image issues. Be realistic about your goals, and more importantly, be happy with what you have. Tailor your diet and exercise to your own personal needs in a way that you can be healthy and in shape. Pin a picture of a dress you want to look great in, not a picture of the model wearing that dress.

Check back next time for more daily chronicles of food and fun. Till then, just love yo bodies pleez!

13 thoughts on “Skinny vs. Attractive vs. Healthy

  1. I’m glad you posted this! For the record, as you’re likely aware, the opposite struggle (“skinny” trying to gain wait) is alive and well, but it doesn’t get as much attention. In middle school I remember being asked if I was anorexic, and I still get patronizing comments about my size/weight from time to time. What does that do to a person’s body image? It fosters the same feelings of inadequacy. I literally used to GORGE myself on food in an effort to gain weight! As I get older though, I can tell I’m thinking less and less about whether my body fits some idealized womanly mold and more about simply being healthy, as your blog suggests. So thank you.

    Also–I have no doubt you could fit into my gym clothes. Seriously.

    Hanna (The Roommate)

    • Yes! I wish I could “like” this comment, cause I totally would. My brother and dad have always struggled to gain weight as well (my dad has not gained a pound since high school).

      And if anyone ever questions your eating habits, send ’em my way- I can more than vouch for the fact that you can seriously eat! 😛

  2. Great post, Katie! Love your writing style. This post definitely hits close to home and I know a lot of other people (not only women) would enjoy posts like this as well. Keep up the great work!

    • Thanks Carly! I love posting recipes and day-to-day pics, but somehow posts like these always rack up the most traffic on my blog. Guess it’s a hot topic!

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  4. Hey! loved this post & it is is dead on! Its one of the reasons I fell in love with reading healthy living blogs. Most of them promote strength and health over just being skinny.

  5. Great blog post 🙂 healthy body image is such an important issue, thanks for sharing your thoughts. xxx

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