Fit Five Friday: Rachel

Today’s Fit Five Friday features Rachel from New York. Let’s see what she has to say about health, fitness, and her body.

1. What do you love about your body?

That’s a tricky one. Until recently, I would have said its strength. I’ve always been very strong and capable of all sorts of ungodly tasks, like moving furniture by myself and beating small half-Asian women at arm wrestling. I endured a 52-hour unmedicated labor with my son, and a much faster (more painful!) one with my daughter. I’ve never doubted my strength and physical capability until lately. Lately, everything hurts. I’m not sure what’s up with that, but I’m working it out.

Meanwhile, you asked me a very specific question that I’ve managed to evade to this point, didn’t you? Right.

I guess I love my boobs. They’re not what/where they once were, but they still rock. They make me feel feminine and sexy when the rest of me doesn’t fit any “feminine” or “sexy” stereotypes I’m familiar with. Hooray for boobies.

2. What would you like to change about your body?

I’d like it to stop hurting, and I’d like it to be more toned.

3. Have you ever been or are you currently on a diet?

I have dieted more than once. Each time I lost a bunch of weight, and then I gained even more back. I just got tired of counting things and measuring things and tracking things and weighing things and obsessing over things, so I went back to my old way of doing things. It was exhausting, and I don’t want to spend my life playing a numbers game.

I’m currently trying a “purification” program with a nutritionist under the strict guidelines that I am not in it to lose a pound. I’m trying to pinpoint food sensitivities and give my digestive system a 21-day break from sugar, dairy, wheat, and other allergenic foods. When it’s over, I’ll challenge my body by reintroducing one food group at a time and figuring out how I feel when I eat it. I expect I’ll lose weight while eating the elimination diet, but my goal is not to lose weight; it’s to get healthy. (Also, I have to take weird whole-food supplements made of strange things like bovine prostate. Ew.)

4. Have you ever or do you currently belong to a gym? 

I belong. I don’t go. I’m self-conscious and cranky the whole time I’m there. It’s not a pleasant experience. I didn’t mind going when I was thinner (thanks to previously mentioned failed diets). I felt like I belonged. But now? It’s just embarrassing.

5. What does fitness mean to you?

Being fit means being strong and having energy. It means having faith in my body and feeling like I deserve to take up the space I take up. It means making healthful choices about food and activity for myself and as a role model for my kids.