All These Women Are Olympic Athletes!!

This photo is from the 2004 Olympics when there was a campaign to address the issue of fitness coming in different sizes and shapes. Several U.S. Olympic athletes were lined up so we could see their different body shapes along with their height and weight.

This picture got me thinking.  What does fitness look like? Are all thin people fit people? Is a huge powerlifter or heavyweight Greco-Roman wrestler unfit?

The answer is probably no and I think you see where I am going.  The human body takes on many different forms and sizes.  Weight is not always directly related to someone’s level of physical fitness.  Genetics and other external variables play a huge role in body shape independent of workout regime. It’s likely none of us will have the perfect body but we can still be physically fit.

I like the message this photo sends.  World-class athletes, who have devoted hours a day to their fitness, still come in all different sizes.  So do we average athletes!  We don’t have the perfect body.  We work full time jobs, raise kids, and have all the pressures of a normal life.  We aren’t lazy we are just too busy.  We don’t have time for eight hour training days with coaches and teams of people to ensure we achieve perfection and Olympic status.  We may not look like fitness-magazine models but we run marathons, climb mountains, do triathlons, race cyclocross and all sorts of other athletic activities to stay fit.  We look delightfully average and we come in all different sizes and shapes.

Tips:

  • Avoid using numbers that don’t matter: Your weight and clothing size.
  • Use numbers that matter: Distances you run/bike/swim/walk/climb.  Weight you lift.   Number of workout days/week.   Your heart rate and blood pressure.  Your body fat.

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