Bikini Season Thoughts on Body Image

Last week, as I caught a glimpse of my bare arms in the mirror, I was happy with what I saw.

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No makeup, no straightener, no attempting to contour my arms to look skinnier, no filter. 

I’d like to think I have decent body image. Even when I’m above a weight I want to be at, I still realize that I’m in decent shape and I remind myself how far I’ve come. I remind myself what my body can do — like run a marathon under 4 hours or a half under 1:50 and lift weights.

My therapist made a great point a few weeks ago. I must have made some sarcastic aside about my body, and she reminded me that I work in both fitness and social media, so I am bombarded with images of women who are fitter than most, not to mention surrounded by them both at work and industry events. If you’re reading this blog, you probably follow a lot of other fitness bloggers or personalities on social media, too. Remember that not only does social media just show the highlight reel, but for many of these women, it’s their job to look awesome and fit all the time. And while many of these women work hard, some are just genetically blessed. I’ll never have the body of a fitness model, but that doesn’t mean I won’t work to feel a little more comfortable in my own skin, to carry a little less of that dangerous fat around my midsection, to fit better into those shorts in my drawer that just aren’t working right now.

I’ve been doing our lifting program at work (p.s. you can try any of our programs for free for 30 days and we’re just $12.95/month after that) for about a month, and I’m definitely starting to notice more definition and tone in my arms and some of my dresses are starting to fit a bit better. More than that, I’ve been treating my body better over the past month than I had in a while, and that’s made me feel AWESOME.

I wanted to share a few interesting body-image related things I’ve read lately.

1. If you’ve read this blog for more than a hot second, you know I’m obsessed with the bright, whimsical Lilly Pulitzer clothes. I’m not a person who takes herself too seriously, so wearing bright pink dresses with monkeys on them kind of suits me. I was super bummed to see this story about my favorite brand a few weeks ago, with one employee having cartoons at her desk that said “Put it down carb face” and “Just another day of fat, white and hideous.” Whether she was directing this at herself, at potential customers, not ok. Sure, it’s one employee’s views, but especially at a company like Lilly that’s been highly publicized lately, you’d think that she would have thought to have taken it down or someone would have thought to do a once-over of the office before the photographer came in.  

2. On a happier, more positive note, Lauren Conrad has banned words like “thin,” “slim,” and “skinny” from her website, which is awesome news. We all know those words sell and are clickbait, so this is a great step towards focusing on well-being rather than on a “skinny” ideal.

3. LOVE this video on “how to get a bikini body.”

4. And finally, from fellow blogger Gracie: a wonderful, heartfelt post about learning to accept how she looked in a bikini even though she still wants to lose some weight.

I want to hear from you: how did you learn to love/accept your body and what do you think about these body image reads above? And, any fave bathing suit lines/styles that are really supportive? I think it’s time for me to graduate from the triangle tops and stop nearly flashing everyone.

5 comments on “Bikini Season Thoughts on Body Image

  1. Gianna @ Run, Lift, Repeat

    Myself and body image is an ever evolving work in progress. I have also lost a lot of weight in my time (~80 pounds) and it can be hard to not see the former me when I look in the mirror sometimes.
    I was in Miami this past weekend and while the girls I was with were tinier than me I was really happy with how I look NOW. I am pretty sure no matter what I will always want to firm something up but I have put in work this year to get my weight back down and I was out and about in a bikini with confidence.
    Also, being diagnosed with Crohn’s last year has opened up a whole new world of respecting my body and appreciating health & having to treat it better. I think the better you are to your body the better you feel about it regardless.
    In regards to the articles…I think focus should be health always. I am all for accepting your body but I think overall health should be considered. Everyone is up in arms about very slim and very fit and can judge but the trend is opposite for the other side of the spectrum where it is taboo to challenge that overweight body and everyone must accept it. True story I went to a new doctor and my BMI (I know I know not the BEST indicator of health but still) was 24 and he was like – you gain this much and you’ll be overweight and the older you get the harder it is. Very matter of fact, and I appreciate that we need a little more bluntness about health implications.
    And novel done 🙂

    Reply
  2. Katie

    Athleta swim suits are the BOMB. Seriously. So so so worth the money. I love the dolphin short as a swim bottom as it makes me feel so darn confident.

    Reply
  3. Mandy

    Want to get a jumpstart! Get energy & fill nutrtional gaps? Have u heard of Thrive? > mandytran_901.le-vel.com! Do ur research! This product is a game changer when used properly & done for 8 weeks minimum!!!

    Reply
  4. Heather

    This is a tough one because I’m not yet at the weight I want to be. I try to remind myself that I have come damn far and am so much fitter and healthier than I was a year ago. I alternate from not wanting to wear a bathing suit to saying so what if my thighs jiggle and I don’t have 6 pack abs.

    Reply

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