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Big Butts

Ingrid Barclay on Tuesday, 13 June 2017.

So sometimes I reckon I just dipped out on the genetic pool because I have always had a flattish bum. (sorry mum, I scored yours). So that can make me feel sometimes like recent body trends are just sooo unattainable and that I cannot fit in the “beauty standards” of the times.

Now, insecurity isn’t just something to giggle about, like a 14-year-old who’s wearing a bra for the first time. Truth be told, we all have at least ONE insecurity. But I must caution that you should never laugh it off. Because the likelihood is that this very insecurity that you think is innocent is fuel for the evil patterns of behaviour that are keeping you from achieving the very goals you’ve set for yourself.

But back to the tale of my butt. …

So where did this come from?

Media, magazines, Kim Kardashian … I don’t know what in particular spiked my big butt obsession and thinking that my current derrière isn’t butt enough. But IN knew when I wanted to get back on stage that I really wanted to grow a “winning set of glutes” to present a “total package” on stage for my show.

So I did. I tried so hard to grow my “winning package.” (Who came up with this term anyhow? For real, just make it stop.)

I trained glutes 2-3 times a week. I squatted, lunged, and deadlifted all the way. By the way, have you noticed that nobody has ever written a song about a small butt? They say big butts don’t lie, but on Instagram they do. All. The. Time. Given all of that “research,” the only skill I have recently learned is how to spot butt implants on fitness models and celebrities. No shame in your game, girlfriend, but just insult my intelligence by telling us “it’s real”…..

But I tried. HARD. And every time I would get in them jeans and look in the mirror, my butt wasn’t big enough. Every time I would wear a my shortie shorts, I would turn around to capture my bootyliciousness with carefully crafted poses in my bathroom mirror (God forbid someone saw me do this)….;like mirror, mirror, validate my awesomeness! L L

There was one day, though, that I remember like it was this morning.

I saw my thighs. And then I turned to the side and saw the backs of my legs, formerly known as hamstrings. My legs were the biggest I had ever seen them. And so was my butt.

The sad thing was….I had reasonably improved legs and a nice butt to go along with it, but at that point I HATED it all.

I hated my legs.

I hated the backs of my legs.

I hated my calves.

I hated my butt.

I hated my stomach, which never seemed to shape itself into a six-pack.

I hated my arms.

I hated everything about my body because it was never good enough.

I don’t know if it was the grace of God or what had gotten into me, but a lightning bolt hit me…

“I can’t live like this anymore. All my inner dialogue is about is my body parts … and, actually, my arse. I’m a smart, educated woman with a few degree’s and a career. WTF am I doing this for? Do I have to live like this? Because I did this to myself? Do I want to talk about my body in terms of sections and body parts for the rest of my life? Really? And hate myself like this?” Crazy.

At that moment, I knew that I was beyond done with the idea of a big rear and a six-pack, and all of the slogan terminology of the traditional fitness industry that made me feel like less and sent me on a self-hate roller-coaster. Sure I didn’t want to leave the fitness industry completely but I would have to say I have significantly changed my ethos.

How many of us on a daily basis hear “BIG boobs,” “SMALL waist,” and a big beeeehiiinnnnddd are a must beauty standard?

I’ll let you in on a little secret: Fitness and fashion go in trends. Five years ago, women wanted to be that skinny girl, after that came the big tittie committee era and every woman was blonde. And now we’re in butt obsession insanity.

Here’s the truth. …

We’re shoved a fast-food version of health down our throats on a daily basis.

Fitness marketing focuses on quick results, hitting fears and insecurities so you, the consumer, buy whatever is sold faster. I’ve been studying this online marketing stuff for a few years now, and it actually baffles my mind how many smart, educated women like you and I buy into this crap.

We have a distorted and completely unrealistic idea of what healthy and fit actually is. …

Healthy looks like six-pack abs. LIE! YOU know and I know some of fitness models and figure girls struggle with the worst of eating disorders and body image distortion. Why do you think Scott Abel is so busy and in demand? Those very ones you see on magazine covers and DVDs.

Healthy looks like a big booty. NOPE! Half the models you see on Instagram either bought it or had it to begin with. You can’t out-argue me on this, it’s a well-known fact in the industry.

Healthy is being chiselled to the max. WRONG! Very few achieve this the healthy way, and typically diet for months and years to look like that. In many cases I

So, what is the point of this whole roller coaster of having chiselled abs, huge butts and tiny waist? Why are we striving for the optical illusion of health that is unattainable by 99% of female populations?

Haven’t we had enough of this nonsense?

What is health and fitness really about?

It’s simple, it’s actually really really really simple.

The answer is love and it’s always love.

Because when we have the true, carrying, passionate and compassionate love for ourselves what we “should” look like no longer matters. What others want us to look like no longer holds value because true love doesn’t care about how it looks on the outside.

That’s what I want my business Body Conquest to stand on. Body Conquest to me encompasses confidence, inner strength, and loving yourself enough to dedicate time to yourself in your full schedule. Not Instagram ass obsessed selfies and shameless teatox sponsored ads.

Ok, off my soap box and defining healthy once and for all.

Here are the key elements of a lasting “healthy” lifestyle.

Energy. Endless energy to be a better mum, wife, employee, business owner, grandma, self. We’re robbed of energy on a daily basis. Technology, GMO foods, excess sugar in everything, gallons of coffee, lack of sun, lack of sleep. We’re IN an energy epidemic, and the only way to get more of it is to generate it. Just like a car that you leave outside with the lights on; that’s what our body is like when we don’t take it for a walk or a workout. It’s a tired, dead car sitting in the parking lot waiting for a jump-start.  

Mood. How often do we find ourselves waking up and scrolling our newsfeed and start to get seriously scared for the well-being of the universe as a whole? Guess what? What we pay attention to expands. So if we focus on the negative, we’ll only see negative, and that’s what we’ll find everywhere we go: more stress, more depression, and more crap in our sh%$it soup of life. When we exercise, it’s scientifically proven that it puts us in a good mood. And unlike other fitness people who pull ridiculous stats out of their behinds. EXERCISE makes us happier! Happiness – isn’t that what everyone’s so obsessed with right now? You want instant happiness, go on a 5 km run; you’ll be so happy you’re finished, and all of a sudden your boyfriend, job, life are going to look like a fairy tale because you instantly feel better about everything you already have.

Confidence. Amazing things happen when we pick up and put down heavy things, when we break a running record, or, perhaps, do a chin up for the first time. All of a sudden, any meeting we walk into sounds like a piece of cake because we’ve got it. We already HAD it with our morning workout, and since that’s always a near-death experience, nothing can break us anymore.

Strength. How many of us out there can’t open a jar of peanut butter? Or grab that one thing from the top shelf or, perhaps, toss the hockey sticks in the back of the van. That’s where resistance training comes in. Not just for the great butt but for the fact that we’re strong woman who can handle a physical challenge, too. There’s nothing worse than feeling physically weak because we actually can’t enjoy the simple joys and pleasures in life, like opening a jar of peanut butter on demand.

Community. When we’re happier, we have more energy. When we’re confident and strong, what kind of people are we going to attract in our life? We’re human, we crave connection, we long to be part of a tribe, we love people around us despite that we might not have gone out in years because #humanssuck. NO! When we exercise, we find other happy, sexy, confident, strong humans who are there to enrich our life with more of those qualities, so we can go through this stressed-out, busy, roller-coaster of a life with more joy and pleasure.

Notice that my idea of health has nothing to with my size, my butt, the number on the scale, or a label. I was obsessed with those stats for years because I, too, thought that’s what health meant.

I don’t know about you, but I want to go through life with endless energy, unbeatable confidence, strength to endure any hardship, and the most amazing community of supporters and cheerleaders who insure that I’m a joyful and happy human being!

YES, YES, AND YES!!

So, that’s why I don’t give AFF (a flying f%$#k – excuse the French) about my flattish butt. Because it’s mine and I LOVE IT and I don’t care what you think about the size of it because it doesn’t define my health, happiness, and confidence.

You, too, can’t go through life with this kind of thinking. Being afraid sucks because it keeps you small. It shrinks you when you want to step forward. The best solution for fear is always courage. The courage to stand UP for yourself, to stand up for OTHERS. Do not let this happen to you, or anyone close to you for that matter.

You are enough, too. So don’t let a magazine cover – or anyone else – tell you otherwise.