I love my body. It pushes me up hills and balances me on two wheels as I propel myself from place to place. It is strong, it is tough, and it is pretty damn amazing. I’ve lost weight since starting cycling, but most importantly I have realized how strong I am, and that I am capable of more than I ever thought I could achieve.
I think our critical perspective needs to shift, and we should look at the amazing things that our bodies do for us. It’s deserving of love and respect.
I’m done worrying about “thunder thighs”. My legs work hard to conquer hills, pedaling on and not giving up until I reach my destination.
No more hating my nose. It drags in and warms cold winter air and I am thankful for the oxygen pouring through my lungs, keeping me going and centering me as I pedal. It doesn’t need to be small, straight or anything but what it is.
Then there’s skin. It puts up with the wind, the rain, and the sun beating down on it. It protects me and holds me together, and I do my best to take care of it with sunscreen, hydration, and balms. I have weird cyclist tan lines, freckles and spots, but that reminds me I am more at home on a bike than laying on a beach (though I do enjoy a little salt and sand from time to time).
I don’t the fine lines that are starting to appear on my face. As long as I keep riding, they’ll fall into the right places on my face, and reveal years of smiles and good memories.
I think all too often we declare war on our bodies with diets, going through the motions at the gym, and sometimes even surgery.
Instead, I invite you to connect, to value, and to appreciate your body.
Use your body for the amazing things it can do, instead of focusing on its apparent failures when compared to cultural ideals of beauty.
Revel in it. Soak it in. Enjoy the Ride.