This weekend a new Miss America was crowned. It was a big deal because she did it without having to parade in a swimsuit for the judges. It took 98 years of Miss America pageants to get to this point in history.
In an interview after the pageant, the newly crowned Miss America said she was glad she did not have to put on a swimsuit for the competition “because I am more than just that, all these women on stage are more than that”. (high five Miss America!)
Opponents say the swimsuit portion was important because it measured the contestants fitness level. Let’s take a look at the definition of fitness according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and to see if how you look in a swimsuit has ANYTHING to do with your fitness level:
“Fitness is the ability to do activities of every day life with ease so you have energy left over to meet emergencies and for doing the things you enjoy”
(look to those folks pictured in the header of this blog site for examples of the real deal when it comes to fitness!)
Change takes time. I hear from so many of you about the social struggles that come with carrying extra weight. Clearly we still have a long way to go when it comes to looking beyond someones body to see the person below. I feel privileged each day at the Weight Center to get to know the person sitting in front of me, well beyond what the scale says. I hope today you hear the news and know we are getting closer to a time when you don’t have to worry that your weight will define you.
Change comes from our actions not our words. How do we change the perception of fitness and health? Do not do and exercise program because it says it will “fix” your body, or promises of you will achieve a certain (media defined) “look”. Walk out of any fitness class that makes you feel worse mentally and/or physically. Why? Because you are more than that. You deserve more than that. Each time you say “no” to these marketing based approaches to exercise, you are helping to make this change in our culture. Choose only exercises that make you feel better mentally and physically each and every time. Exercise, not to punish your body, but to take care of your body. Exercise in ways that bring out the “true you” every day and little by little we will help keep this trend going.
Keep Moving, Be Well,
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These weekly blogs are general guidelines. These guidelines apply to patients who are cleared by a physician for the type of exercise described. Please contact your physician with any concerns or questions. Always report any symptoms associated with exercise, such as pain, irregular heartbeats, and dizziness or fainting, to your physician.