With a PHD in fashion, a hair ambassadorship with L’Oréal Paris and a global audience, Victoria is the lady behind the award-winning fashion, travel and beauty blog, Inthefrow.
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Just so skinny. The Stigma of Body Size Stereotypes
A few things have been bugging me recently, and after reading numerous blog posts on the matter, I decided I also wanted to have my say…
We are all humans, with emotions, and we are all born in different shapes and sizes, and choose to live our lives in particular ways that affect our body shapes and frames. Some things we choose, some things we don’t. I was born with a petite frame and I also danced for around 9 years. Since then, I have gone through years of University, drinking, eating and snacking, and my body shape has slightly changed. Like every woman, I also deal with cellulite and pockets of fat, and am one of those women who put most of their food onto their bottom and tummy. As such, I have been dissatisfied with my body for around 6 years, and I know I need to work on improving my diet and fitness in order to get my body back to how I would like it to look. I know I don’t need to lose weight; I just want to tone up and be the best version of me. I eat what and when I like. I don’t ask for sympathy, or a shoulder to cry on when I look in the mirror and realise I need to make changes; I just make new goals.
Because I am already petite, and a size 6, some people seem annoyed and amused by the idea that I want to create goals for my body, or have body concerns. Should I feel silly for working out, for the sake of my health, body, mental state and happiness because I am already in a small dress size category? I have become so upset with hearing the same comments over and over again, along the lines of:
“Why do you need to work out, you are already skinny!” (‘skinny’ is an insult.)
“You have nothing wrong with you, you do not need to lose weight” (…did I ever say I was trying to?!)
“Dont be ridiculous, you’ve got nothing on you”
and so on. And so on.
Males that I know, have had to put up with similar comments. Numerous times men will be asked why they are still working out, even if their physique is already alike to how the magazines portray the ideal body type. But they continue to work out because they enjoy it, they want to maintain their fitness levels and they too have a goal and an ideal shape. Some people want to lose weight, some want to tone, others want to enhance their bum, or arms or back, etc. Unfortunately there are people out there who hope to deter others from higher levels of fitness, due to jealousy and insecurities of their own. Others are insulting people without actually meaning to, and that is what I wanted to address.
Regardless of my dress size, anyone can work out if they feel it could help them tone, shape and enhance their body. It doesn’t matter whether they are a size 6 or a size 16, 8st or 16st, they can work out as much as they like, if they have the right motivations to do so. I work out for me, because I want to and because I too have a goal and dream body shape. I respect other people’s weight and shape goals, in the same way that they should respect mine.
I just want everyone to stop comparing themselves to others and to support each and every person who is determined enough to make a goal and work for it. Celebrate people trying to make changes and increasing their fitness and enhancing their health. And please do not use the word skinny, it is truly offensive.
Let’s celebrate different dress sizes and body shapes and support our friends, family and neighbours who are reaching for their goals, whether male or female. I have friends and relatives of a variety of shapes and sizes and I respect them for who they are and what they’re striving for. Let’s all try to support each other and spread positivity.
As long as you are healthy and happy, it doesn’t matter what dress size you are. And if you want to make changes, go for it! I’m right there behind you!
I’d love to hear what you feel about this topic! Please do leave any comments below, and lets keep the positivity high!