If you’re reading this blog, you most likely aren’t in the camp that needs to be told ketchup is not a vegetable. You already know a grass fed burger is not the same as a Big Mac. But apparently, some who’ve stumbled upon this blog by accident, are from the camp of “if you aren’t below 17% body fat as a woman you are fat and lazy”. Even a positive project such as this gets met with negativity from some, such is life. What this blog project is NOT about is lying around, eating bonbons and letting ourselves get flabby and unhealthy. It’s NOT about not giving a hoot about how we look – of course we want to look good! This project is simply about not hating life and our body while we’re on our way to a better one – and each of us determining what that better one looks like. Why are we still living in this idea that there’s only one version of a beautiful female body? Are we still saying skinny is the only sexy? Is there but one picture of a healthy and fit body? To each their own! I love a muscular body with firm, harder curves but many women want a more slender, softer look – both are beautiful so long as the woman wearing that physique feels good about herself. Nothing is more beautiful than a confident woman. Having self confidence not only will improve your pretty quotient in an instant, but that confidence helps you keep working hard at the gym and making good choices for yourself….all the while feel good doing it. I still write the articles on hormones and give my two cents on the latest study on the acai berry, but this project wasn’t about facts, it was about an experience. The experience we all have when we’re feeling badly about our bodies – even though we are doing so much right: the workouts and diet, taking our vitamins, and on and on. Some of you have yet to be successful in your weight loss goals, some of you have had lots of success but are “not quite there yet”, and yet some have had great success transforming the outside, but still don’t feel so great on the inside. Or like me, you’ve been in each camp at one time or another. Tuning in everyday and becoming aware of just how often I have a negative feeling about my body has been really enlightening – and honestly, it’s been a little sad. As I ate dinner last night, not in front of my computer (for once!), I tuned in. I noticed that I felt sad. I felt sad for all the times I’ve beaten myself up for not being in better shape. I felt sad for all the horrible things I’ve said about my legs, or my butt or my round face. It’s really sad that I’ve ever talked to myself this way, and it’s usually a fleeting thought or I grumble it quietly to myself and then I’m on to the next thing. These little nasty thoughts don’t just come and go, but they build up to a bigger sadness. I think it’s time to be a happier camper. Joe’s mom Laura is the perfect example of just how much more beautiful a woman can be at 50 than at 20 by simply radiating a comfort and peace with herself. She emailed me about this project and said, “It encourages me to want more for myself without feeling bad about where I am now.” That is EXACTLY what this project is about. Joe Mama, I could’ve have said it better myself!