“Oh my God, you are really strong and look great. Do you compete?” If you are a Fit Girl in today’s gym and are seen with any significant amount of muscle tone and strength you’ve been asked this question…how do I know? Because I get asked this question at least once a month while lifting weights in the gym. Don’t get me wrong, I take it as a bit of a compliment because it means I’m viewed as a person of strict dedication and a drive to push my body to look its absolute best, but please understand it does not take you being a body building competitor for this to happen.
You Don’t Need a Stage to Compete
If you are fit and a part of social media at all, you have more than likely hashtagged one of your selfies in the gym or flexing in the mirror with #fitfam. Trust me I do at least 10 times minimum a week with photos and way more with tweets. #FITFAM is a community of fit minded people around the entire world who are all dedicated to living the healthiest and most fit life that works for THEM. I emphasize the “them” because everyone is on a different step in their journey to fitness and each person’s individual path is just as commendable as the next person’s. The beauty of social media is it allows us to connect with people all around the world in the same way I was able to connect with #FITGIRLCODE to become an ambassador. It also allows us to support one another in our goal to become stronger than we were yesterday. However, the allure of #FITFAM can be a double edged sword and it happens before you even realize it. One of the new trends in fitness is the belief that you should compete if you have a great physique, especially for a woman, but personally, I do not believe that you have to feel compelled to compete just because it is the “in” thing. It is possible to be a fan of the sport of bodybuilding, a fit person yourself and separate the two so you are not subconsciously telling yourself that you have to do one because you are the other.
Taking the blinders off
We all start out with the decision that I am going to be fit for myself so I can live a healthier life, be more active and take care of myself better. Notice how that statement was filled with ownership of taking control of YOUR life and focusing on YOUR body and YOUR progress. Well even I have fallen victim to staring at others on social media who are farther along in their fitness journey than myself or perhaps training for different goals like earning their NPC pro card and wondering, why don’t I look like that? I train hard, I eat healthy and I am dedicated as well. Taking our blinders off to look to the right of us during our path to fit is the perfect way to get derailed and discouraged. More than half of the 756 accounts I follow on Instagram are people who are training to compete in their first ever bodybuilding competition or are already seasoned competitors. No, I do not do this to torture myself to view people with bodies of Greek gods and goddesses but to show them support for their personal dedication to their journey and to remind me we are all competing for something. The key is to know no matter what it is always against yourself.
Man in the mirror
Michael Jackson sung about the “Man in the Mirror” and asking him to change his ways. We as Fit Girls have to remember to look in the mirror at ourselves each morning and focus on our own individual ways. Each day your only concern should be becoming stronger than you were yesterday in some way, whether it is the will power to choose fruit over chips as a snack or squatting 155 pounds today than the 145 pounds you were only able to lift your last workout. Each day I remind myself that I am competing against TJ and each little bit of progress is a win in my daily competition. Then I usually take a selfie flexing because that is just what Fit Girls do! Always remember, the woman in front of the mirror is more than enough competition each day and if you can push through the pain and discomfort that comes with change and growth, you will see a better you each time!
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