Most people understand why I post my weight loss progression pictures here and on my facebook page, but every now and then someone will express a concern that those pictures conflict with my general message of body acceptance. I’d like to take a moment to explain why I keep those pictures front and center.
By far, the main reason is to convey the TRUTH that there is no magic to weight loss and fitness. I did this without gimmicks, without fad diets, without restricting foods or macronutrients, without spending hours in the gym, without starving myself, without pills and potions, without dicipling myself to any fitness or diet gurus. My results have been dramatic, but the steps I took to achieve them were not. The key to my success, and to yours, is consistency. Good habits, practiced consistently, over time. Its not low carb, or low fat, or crossfit, or clean eating, or raw vegan, or paleo, or zumba, or gluten free or any other fad-du-jour with promises of easy weight loss and ‘ripped abs in 30 days’. It’s consistency. If I could put consistency in a pill and sell it to you, I’d be a millionaire. Because consistency WORKS. The evidence is right there in my progression pics.
I think it throws some people for a loop that I’m showing you these pictures, but not using them as a marketing ploy to sell you a magic pill. People don’t quite know what to make of that. Before/after pics are almost always used as a marketing ploy to sell magic pills (or fad diets, or workout programs, etc). But there’s no magic pill here, no promise of fast and easy weight loss and ripped abs in 30 days. Just the truth: if you make healthy choices, consistently, over the course of several years, you will have results as dramatic as mine. You won’t look exactly like me, because you have different genetics, but you WILL have dramatic results. Your health will improve and your body will change. It’s true.
I also share these pictures because I am NOT traditionally beautiful, I frequently am on the receiving end of personal attacks against my body and my appearance…and yet I still think I’m awesome and love my body and believe that I am a valuable human being. I want to show my daughters (and you guys) that it’s OK to not fit into society’s little boxes. It’s ok that some people don’t like the way I look. People can call me ugly and say I look like a man until they’re blue in the face, and I still think I’m just fine exactly the way I am, and I think my daughters are fine exactly the way they are, and I think all of YOU are fine exactly the way you are. I share my pictures and allow the hate to roll off my back so that my daughters learn that they can allow hate to roll off their backs. Their worth is not defined by how well they fit into society’s boxes, or by what anyone else thinks of them. I’m proud of what my body is capable of, and I’m proud of the way I’ve turned my health around! The aesthetic changes are fairly insignificant in the grand scheme of things, I’d MUCH rather show you pictures of my improved insulin sensitivity, or my no-longer-cystic ovaries, or my anxiety- and depression-free brain, or the migraines I no longer get. But I can’t, so I show you pictures of the ways the shape of my body has changed.
Finally, I share these pictures for a very pragmatic reason: they get people’s attention. They draw people in, especially people who are trapped in the fad diet mental maze of restriction and dysfunction. And once I have their attention I can tell them the truth. You’re valuable. You’re worthy of love and respect. Your worth is not defined by your abs. I have visible abs and I’m telling you, they do not define me, and they do not define you. When was the last time someone with visible abs told you that you don’t have to have visible abs to be loved? Never? Well, maybe it’s time someone with visible abs told you: you’re worthy of love and respect regardless of the status of your abs. Maybe it’s time MORE people with visible abs started telling the truth: visible abs are not a barometer of health, or fitness, or desirability. Visible abs are nothing more than an indication of low body fat in the abdominal region. Nothing more. NOTHING MORE. And that’s the truth.
Sometimes, when you’re trying to change the world, you have to meet the world where it is.