It is disturbing how many health + fitness pros still conflate being smaller and leaner (at any cost) with being “healthy.” When I started teaching fitness classes and was running track at the University of Oregon, I thought this was true. I’d exercise/train for hours, trying to stay lean and hoping my running times would improve… lol – not the case. This photo was about 12 years ago when I’d teach 2-3 fitness classes a day, and still feel the need to go on an hour long run! God I wish sometimes I could go back in time and shake some education in my poor little head.
Can losing body fat improve health markers in some instances?
I was sooooo unhealthy in this photo! Deep health is about SO MUCH MORE than body size. I was struggling with body dysmorphia, harboring unhealthy relationships with food and exercise, and doing harm to my mental/physical health… but being lean and fit was praised and I thought I was healthy…. lol not the case.
Here’s a short list of unhealthy behaviors folks use to get a smaller body (that the fitness industry often glorifies):
✅ cutting out entire food groups without a medical need
✅ counting, weighing, and tracking every morsel of food
✅ drastically cutting calories after eating more than normal
✅ working out harder to “earn” your food
✅ punishing yourself with exercise for eating more than normal
✅ assigning morality to food and to yourself for eating certain foods (e.g. “good” and “bad” foods)
It’s not an easy cycle to break and we want to make sure at PDXstrength that all this diet culture bullshit is not shoved down your throat. We want to make sure that we are taking a holistic approach to your health, and not glorifying weight loss/fat loss…. There’s more than meets the eye.