What’s your memory of sports at school? How high was your body confidence, how positive was your self image? Did you bounce in every day, hockey stick over your shoulder, full of healthy competitive energy and confidence?
If you were, do you relate to that girl now?
Or if you weren’t, do you feel like you’re still ‘just not sporty’ to this day?
A client inspired me to think about this when we realised her adult self still felt like the girl who *doesn’t do sport*. She sees herself as the girl who never has been and never will be lean or fit or strong or any of those bouncy sort of words… She’s never shaken that self image and lack of body confidence. It’s hard for women to muster motivation to exercise when they feel they just don’t ‘belong’ in that mindset.
Why do we hang on to these cliches and ‘pigeon hole’ our personalities and our bodies for our whole lives? Maybe as a parent you find yourself doing it with your own kids: ‘Oh, he’s the quiet one, not sporty at all’ or ‘she’s just not competitive, she’d rather be dressing up’ and then as they get older – whether they’re in all the teams and going to every after-school sports club, or would rather be on the computer or playing the piano… we make this little description for them, just like our parents did for us. And we all believe it.
So I was thinking today, we need to leave our childhood or teenage selves where they belong, in the past. Remember the good times and cringe at the awful bits by all means, but don’t think that ‘that girl’ is still you if you don’t want her to be.
YOU (that’s grown up, all-woman YOU) have as much right to be sporty, fit and slim, to do yoga, to be a runner, to swim, jump or compete as all the other
girls women. If you want to. Don’t get stuck in that teenage girl’s head and don’t get stuck in limiting beliefs about what ‘kind of person’ you are when it comes health, fitness or anything else for that matter.
For what it’s worth, I was absolutely, categorically NOT one of the sporty girls at school. I did anything possible to avoid sports, was never in a team and never got picked for anything. I then spent most of my twenties drinking too much, eating crap and having fun (Our twenties are good for that… getting away with stuff) More on my personal re-branding from pint and a curry to motherhood, yoga and push ups here if you’re interested…
Then, after years of debauchery, I discovered health and fitness and it is now my passion, my livelihood and my joy.
People change. We’re allowed.
So give the ‘fat girl’ or the ‘just not a sporty girl’ part of you an affectionate kiss goodbye, tell her it’ll be OK and decide what you’d like to change about YOUR body, now.
The sporty girls at school were rarely the ones having the most fun anyway as I recall ;)