There was once a time when chanting ‘Hail Mary’ was believed to absolve us of our sins.
These days, our sins (eating non-organic food, skipping BodyPump after work, etc) are amended in a more chic, social-media-friendly manner. The rosary beads have been replaced by designer fitness wrist bands and chanting positive mantras in mindfulness classes.
“I am strong. I am happy. I am enough. I am strong. I am happy. I am…”
Mantras, measuring steps, committing to 10 minutes of mindfulness daily: these actions are proven to have positive benefits on mental and physical health. It’s when the rampant desire to completely overhaul one’s life and model it on the Instagram and Snapchat model/actress/nutritionist/yoga/reiki masters takes over that danger beckons on the Body Image Horizon.
I’m not immune – as the founder of Ballet Sculpt, a barre, yoga and Body Pump instructor and daily gym or studio goer, I walk into the church of body worship and wellness warriors with both a sense of acceptance but also wariness. Under the excuse of “fitness”, there’s some dangerous imagery, ideas, language and behaviour going on. Personal trainers loudly crowing about their two days of fasting and how coffee is improved with a big chunk of butter was a recently painful conversation to overhear (from the other end of the gym).
We discuss on Mamamia Out Loud what happens when you are fat-shamed…by your gym. (Post continues after audio.)