Have you seen the movie Embrace? Australia’s Taryn Brumfitt became a body-image activist after posting a unique before & after photo on Facebook. The “before” photo showed a trim and tight Taryn posing in a sparkly bikini during a body building competition while the “after” showed a sitting Taryn, baring a nude profile and a fuller physique. The image captured the hearts of many who longed to have the confidence to simply embrace the body they have.
I confess I haven’t seen the movie—though I plan to, but as weight loss coach for Kitsap’s largest Ideal Protein weight loss clinic, I wanted to share some thoughts on why I think Taryn is on to something.
The list above doesn’t necessarily pertain to weight loss but I’d like to circle back to it because the answer to loving (or embracing yourself and others) doesn’t mean unrestricted indulgences or lack of personal care. The answer to one faulty extreme is rarely the opposite!
I think it first starts with love. I love my body. As Taryn says, it’s not an ornament (that must be flawless, adored by the masses or manipulated)—but a vehicle (to live life), and because I love it, I seek to feed it well and move it often. I want my family to see me making healthy food choices, cooking food from scratch and enjoying the meals we eat together. I want them to see me lift weights and run races and try new things that are tough. I want them to see me evolve too, so some old habits have to go to make room for new ones. Mostly, I want my joie de vivre to be obvious--and contagious so those with whom I interact are encouraged.
Time is finite—so don’t ‘kill it.’ We get one life—one chance to be 20 years old or 40 years old or 80 years old (hopefully) so be the person you’re meant to be. Your spouse, your children and your friends DO NOT CARE about your dress size—but you’ll kill their joy if you’re always the person who’s obsessing about what you eat and how you look. You’ve got to eat to stay alive and you should eat in accordance with your goals—but save the drama. Do what you need to do to go where you want to go.
Beware of those who tell you what to think and how to spend your money. You worked hard to earn it—so don’t squander it on silly gimmicks and diet fixes that are unsustainable. As one who’s been in the weight loss industry for almost 7 years I can promise you, no one product is going to make you slim. No pill, oil, supplement, wrap, tea, herb or exotic berry is going to change your body composition. Do your research by talking with those who’ve successfully managed and maintained a weight loss and follow their best practices.
Finally, what’s the purpose? I can’t begin to answer this for you, but here are some questions to ask:
Friends, just be mindful. Every choice we make has a corresponding consequence. To an extent, life is the sum total of the choices we’ve made and they ultimately reflect our values and beliefs. Finding harmony between belief and action creates a connection called peace. Where peace exists, you’ll find love.
And love is always worth embracing.
Dionne is a certified Ideal Protein coach who lost 25 pounds following the protocol way back when. Since then she's learned to cook healthier meals (and actually eat them), get a daily dose of iron in the form barbells and kettle bells and is usually training to improve her time in an upcoming half marathon.