I felt like changing things up last week, and did a HIIT workout from a random channel I found on YouTube.
My son was napping and my daughter was next to me, waiting patiently for me to finish my workout so we could go out front and play.
I pressed play – and immediately felt uncomfortable.
The instructor (who was gorgeous, strong, and very fit) was wearing a teeny tiny sports bra and teeny tiny shorts. I’m not quite sure how she kept it all in to be honest.
My daughter walked up to the screen, stared at the instructor, listened to her words and then said, “Mommy, why isn’t she wearing a shirt?”
Now, don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with people exercising in sports bras, wearing swimsuits, and being proud of their bodies. In fact, I LOVE when women are confident, connected to and proud of their bodies!
But at the same time, I didn’t want my daughter to watch.
I turned the screen away from her, and asked her to go play on the other side of the room. I turned the volume down as low as possible so she wouldn’t hear the instructor telling me to “work hard to work off last night’s dinner!”
These things matter.
I care what she sees and what messages she internalizes.
I’ve been styled for photo-shoots where they’ve asked me to wear teeny tiny outfits, and I’ve always said no.
Because I want you to exercise for the way it makes you feel, not because of the way I look.
And I want you to use my videos with your kids in the room playing beside you (or perhaps more realistically, right on top of you).
I don’t want you to compare your body to mine, or anybody else’s.
I don’t want you to feel uncomfortable when your spouse (or son or daugther) walks into the room and looks at the screen.
I want you to know that when I’m filming my videos, I pay attention to these things.
I choose my clothes intentionally (but it was a little harder during my breastfeeding days when feeding time was near – ha)!
I choose my words wisely so the little ones in the room are hearing positive messages about exercise, health and their body.
I choose words that encourage, uplift and inspire a healthy love for movement ( rather than words that make exercise about vanity, punishment or unrealistic expectations).
I care about these things.