This is absolutely the most inspiring thing I’ve ever read about body image. It was originally posted at Muscle Motivation, and used here by permission.
What Your Body Does and Is — Is Amazing
In fitness and health, people have this tendency to despise what their body does, or what their body looks like. We want you to take a minute right here to remember that your body is incredible. Women and men alike have lots of self-confidence issues about how their body looks, or what their body does. It’s important though, that despite all of your perceived negatives, there’s a very specific reason your body does that.
If you are vascular (man or woman), it’s showing that your skin is tight to your body. Your muscles are firm. When you squeeze something and your veins pop out your strength is showing.
If you have fat, it means you have a surplus of food in your life and a surplus of energy to store. It means your body is properly storing energy as it believes it will need in the future.
If you are pale, you have been afforded a life where being in the sun all day with no clothes is an option, not simply a fact you live with.
If you have stretch marks, it shows the battles you have fought to earn them.
If you gained them from gaining muscle, you have grown so much and so fast from where you started that you have marks, showing how quickly you achieved significant results and progress.
If you have them ’cause of the weight you have lost then they’re showing how you managed to shape and mold your body so quickly.
If they’re from pregnancy, it’s showing that you have survived and gone through one of life’s most painful experiences, and out of it gained one of life’s greatest joys.
Even if you’re fat, hell it’s simply a distinguishing factor that makes your body unique.
And one day, if you want them to be, those will be your warrior marks too. They will remind you of where you started.
When you sweat be thankful that your skin and glands work properly to keep your body from overheating and damaging itself.
When you have “gross” bodily functions be glad your body uses those to expel toxins from itself.
If your thighs are large be glad you have large powerful legs.
If you have acne be glad that it probably means you have active hormones.
If you can’t lift a lot of weight, be glad you have realized this and are making efforts to change it. So many go their whole lives without ever testing their body’s limits.
Your body is an incredible piece of art. It’s genuinely amazing what all it can do and how many little things simply go into you twitching your finger or clicking a mouse. Your body is so magnificent, so impressive and amazing in all regards.
However your body is as it is, it is there not because of a dysfunction, or some deficiency in your body. It is as great as it is and not worse because of your body’s amazing ability to adapt, to survive, to improve and to continue to function.
Don’t get down on yourself because you are the result of millions of years of evolution. You are made up of the same cellular material as the people you sit and envy.
It may sound cliche, but it’s the truth when we say that beauty really is in the eye of the beholder.