Today, I interviewed a special guest for this post. Her name is Steph (aka @xogingy)! Steph actually started her fitness journey a few years back & is a dedicated Popster just like myself but on a whole ‘nother level. Her full-time job is working as the Social Media Coordinator for Blogilates! Neat hey?? We talk about our inner struggles, body image, & some ED related issues. If you’d like to see my interview, pop on over to her blog & have a read. Let’s get to it!
Take it away Steph!
How do you try & improve your body image on a day to day basis?
I do NOT weigh myself. I used to validate my worth based on the scale. Now I don’t even need a mirror to validate my worth or body image. I wake up and think about how I FEEL today. It’s not always as easy as it sounds – it’s a constant work in progress. But doing things like journaling, surrounding myself with people who support and inspire me, and practicing positive self-talk really do help (as cheesy as it sounds).
You’re having a terrible body image day. How do you get through it?
I recognize that it’s normal to have bad body image days. Everyone has them. I try not to let it consume my day though. I try and figure out WHY I’m having it. Is it because I ate something “unhealthy” and now I think it affected my body so much for just eating that one thing? Is it because my clothes aren’t fitting right? Is it because someone made a comment that made me feel uncomfortable? Is it because I saw a picture of someone and I’m now comparing myself to them and I don’t feel “as good.” Or is it because I weighed myself and it wasn’t a number I wanted to see? OR is it for some other circumstance like being stressed because of work, family or friends? Body image fluctuates like crazy, but your body really doesn’t. I mean of course your body changes daily – little water weight fluctuations etc. But in reality your body doesn’t change THAT much from day to day. So on bad days, I just try to figure out why I’m having the poor body image and deal with that reason – which probably doesn’t even have anything to do with my body anyways. It’s usually an external factor.
Does your diet impact your mood in any way on a daily basis?
On a regular basis I would say no. My diet is pretty consistent, balance and varied. I eat foods that give me energy (lots of carbs like oatmeal, bread, fruits. I eat protein to keep me full and that’s how I get a lot of my “health” sweets in – from protein bars, making healthier versions of “Froyo” with Greek Yogurt. I LOVE fats so I eat peanut butter, almonds, etc that are actually known to increase your mood! I can say though when I eat something that is out of my comfort zone, sometimes it does affect my mood in a negative way. I still deal with disordered eating thoughts and sometimes I get anxiety from eating meals I don’t normally eat or eating out at restaurants. This is still a work in progress that I’m getting better at. For the most part, I listen to my body and give it what it wants.
When faced with a fear food situation how do you handle it?
I tune into intuitive eating. Just because it’s a fear food doesn’t mean I have to eat it. Instead, I ask myself these questions. 1. Do I want the food? 2. Am I hungry? 3. Will this food satisfy me? If I really don’t want the food, then I’m not going to eat it – whether it’s a “fear” food or not.
What does the word healthy mean to you?
You know, I used to and still do hate it when people call me “healthy” because most of the time they are referring to being that person who eats fruits and veggies all day long and works out to be skinny. That’s not me. I am not that type of “healthy.” If you are to call me “healthy” then it should mean that I am HAPPY. I am fueling my body with foods that I love, I am doing activity that I love and I am surrounding myself with people that I love. Healthy to me means balanced, and doing what makes me feel good.
How has your body image improved now vs before your ED?
My body image has improved tremendously. I rarely have negative body image days. I love my body because I learned how it wants to be treated. I learned what types of food make me feel the best and what kind of activity I enjoy. Lifting weights has honestly increased my body image by A LOT. It makes me feel strong, sexy and powerful. When I look in the mirror, I see so much more. I see strength, I see passion, I see a girl who is motivated, educated and ready to be so much more. Before my ED I felt none of those things.
You work for Cassey Ho now. So cool! How has Blogilates changed your life?
Cassey has changed my life in so many ways. I found my love of fitness through Blogilates. Then I found community. I found people all over the world who have a similar passion for not only fitness, but for inspiring and motivating one another. Then, when I became POP Pilates certified, I was able to officially spread the power of Blogilates/POP to people in my daily life. In the small community I live in, I have been able to impact people and bring happiness to their day just by teaching a 1-hour class. Working for Blogilates and POP behind the scenes is so special to me. I get to empower women I don’t even know. I get to help run a business that is determined to make people thrive and reach their full potential. There is NOTHING better than that. Blogilates made me a better person. Cassey helped me realize who I truly was and I am so thankful for that.
If you could go back in time & change one thing related to your fitness journey what would it be?
Haha! Well, I wouldn’t have stopped eating peanut butter for over a year. But seriously, I would have got off stupid “fitspos” that told me not to eat after 6pm, to stop eating bread, to only do cardio. Instead, I would have looked to myself for motivation and listened to my body more. I would have spoke up when I knew I had a problem and asked for help.But, you know what – I lived and I learned and now my purpose is to help people going through the same thing.
What is your advice for someone going through an ED?
There is light at the end of the tunnel. And it’s there waiting for you to SHINE. Know that ED is not your destiny, it’s just part of your journey, and for some reason you were meant to go through it but in the end it will make you a better person. Fight every single day to get better and make progress. Yes, I said fight. You HAVE to fight, you have to be strong. Some days you’ll be stronger than others, but it will all add up and one day you will find peace. Recovery is possible.
Don’t you just love her?? This girl has been one of my biggest inspirations in the Blogilates community…& it’s not because of her bangin’ bod (well ok maybe a little bit), but because of her raw honesty throughout her entire journey. The ups, downs, in-betweens, Steph stays true to her followers. Her IG captions give me mad inspiration & her blog posts speak volumes to me.
Big thanks to Steph for being so open & honest. You’re a superstar!
Thanks for reading,