November 20, 2013


    If you asked me if I consider myself a perfectionist, I would say yes. And a couple years ago, when I developed a love for healthy food and herbal remedies, I never guessed that my perfectionist nature would mix with an onslaught of new "health food" and exercise information I've found from the Internet to create a problem.

    Do you know how confusing it is to have read at least ten different articles about the best way to handle exercise? Or how about reading tons of blog posts about getting fit - all written by fit people who took totally separate roads to get there? And then there are some who count every calorie they consume, while others advocate vitamins and supplements for health. Should I work out twice a week, every day, or not at all? And what exactly is the perfect "work out"? 

    As an impressionable young lady, all this information swirled around in my head, then manifested itself through my perfectionist tendencies and caused me to start worrying - about my image and weight. Although I was in the ideal weight range for a girl my age and height, for some reason I couldn't get out of my head the fact that I was still gaining weight. Prone to over-thinking, I managed to figure everything out - or so I thought. Forgetting the fact that I was still a teenager, and meant to grow in more ways than vertical, I decided to take pieces of advice from various older ladies floating around on the web and concoct my own fitness plan. While trying to exercise more, I tried to eat less "bad food" and ended up eating less of my mom's good, wholesome meals and more of my own smoothie concoctions. I started snacking between meals and tended to eat too much dessert and peanut butter (a weakness of mine) at random times. With all the changes I had subtly made, I didn't feel satisfied in my belly or my heart. On top of all that, I wasn't seeing the results I had secretly hoped for. 

    Instead of keeping my weight the same or less, I was startled to see that I was still gaining weight. Confused, I ended up confiding in my mom (best idea ever, by the way), and she asked me her go-to weight question: "well, do your pants still fit fine like before?" Yes, they did, I said. So we concluded that with all my exercising I was gaining muscle (which weighs more than fat), and that I was probably snacking too much. That said, my mom suggested I stop eating my mini meals and just eat more of her hearty ones less often. We also decided that I needed to put a stop to my "health research" on the Internet so I could focus on listening to my body instead of other's opinions.

    And you know what? I've realized through this process that my body isn't meant to be the weight I had set for myself as "ideal." And I have a feeling I'm not the only girl who this is true for. My heart hurts when I see girls who are far to concerned with their weight and appearance, and also when I see others who have let their weight get out of control. 

   Then there are the hidden gems that make my heart smile so big. Those are the ones few and far between who have found the balance of self-control and peace with how God made their bodies. Those are the girls who can say no to a second dessert but who don't sweat the first. Those are the girls who understand that a tiny waistline doesn't define beauty. Those are the girls who eat when they are hungry - not before, and not after. 

    Those girls know that beauty comes from inside, but self-control shows up on the outside. I respect them deeply because they understand how to glorify God with their bodies. They understand that there should be a balance between striving to be fit and just living life. That, my friends, is how I want be when I grow up. I don't care if I don't have a supermodel figure, if only I am beautiful on the inside. 'Cause it's the inside that counts, in God's book and mine. :D 
Any thoughts? I'd love to hear them in the comments below!


  1. Sounds almost exactly like I was over a year ago! This is stellar. It's amazing how easy it is to get wrapped up in all that, and to not have a healthy perspective on eating/exercising. And I can validate that it's muscle! :) I put on 25 lbs, and I'm still wearing all the same jeans.

    I know this was written a long time ago, but I love it :D

    1. Thanks Rachel! Your blog has encouraged me in this area as well... it seems like I'll be fighting a battle against vanity/perfectionism/my-health-is-REALLY-important thought patterns for a while in this season of my life. Glad to know I'm not alone. ;)


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