So God Made a Teacher Collection (Sale!) ➔

There’s an obesity epidemic, did you hear? We, as a nation (doesn’t matter which one), are getting fatter. Our children are obese. It’s costing us money, and health, and lifespan.

How true is this? Certainly, the numbers stack up. And yes, there’s a correlation between weight and health- as one goes up, the other often goes down. However, the fixation on weight as the sole indicator for health in first world countries is beginning to do more harm than good.

OK, who are we kidding? It’s downright destructive. It’s giving people the idea that it’s ok to judge someone and publicly lambaste, insult and embarrass them, based on physical appearance. It’s reinforcing major issues with body image. It’s leading us down a very dangerous path, where a person’s worth is determined by how they look and what they weigh, rather than how healthy they actually are, or who they are as a person. The only winner here are the guys in the diet industry and they’re making a killing.

What should the message be then? If we break it down to the most simple of things, we want to be healthy. We want to be able to move freely, have the energy to do the things we love, have the stamina to stay out all night or stay up with the kids. We want to be able to live life without the threat of heart attacks or medications or diabetes hanging over our heads. We want to be happy, pain-free, confident and comfortable. Is losing weight going to get us all this? Maybe. Maybe not.

A highly restricted diet won’t give us energy. Sudden weight loss isn’t going to suddenly extinguish our personal demons. Not eating won’t help us to be happy, or carefree. And, studies show the majority of diets don’t damn well work, so even if we lose weight, we put it back on and end up back where we started. So, what’s the answer?
Flip it on its head. What if, instead of losing weight for health benefits, we just went straight to the end game? What if we ate to lower blood pressure, increase our energy, fill us with nutrients and be kind to our pancreas? What if, by doing this, we lowered our blood pressure, increased our energy, enjoyed a new range of healthy foods we were eating and we stopped focusing on weight? Maybe we’d lose some. Maybe, just by focusing on what we gain, and looking at what we put into our diet rather than what we take out, we could inadvertently- and sustainably- shift some kilos? It wouldn’t matter.

Yes, it wouldn’t matter that we’d lost weight. All those things we wanted- health, energy, vibrancy- would be the focus of our motivation. By looking for the gains, by eliminating the shaming, guilt-inducing, failure-driven culture we adhere to, we’d be happier. If we can take the focus away from how we look and put it into how we feel, we might even stop judging others based on arbitrary standards. We might be kinder, less critical, more supportive. We might be happier.

Today, make a new goal. Instead of promising to cut out sugar, promise to eat more veggies. Promise to play outside with the kids. Promise to drink more water. Promise to look after your health- not so you look better, but so you feel better. Do it so you have the energy to run, the freedom to play and the longevity to see your kids grow old. Do it to set a good example, not a disordered one.

Do it for you.

Amy Hopkins

Amy is an ordinary girl from a medium sized town and does pretty normal things, most of the time. She likes coffee and red wine and books with dragons and swordfights in them. She loves to write and has a burning passion for health and equality and believes the two go hand in hand- you can’t look after others if you don’t look after yourself too. She’s using her words to make the world a better place for her three kids to grow up in, while dancing around the kitchen baking cookies with vegetables in them.

I Don’t Want To Do Your Exercise Challenge, Facebook Friend

In: Fitness, Health, Motherhood
I Don't Want To Do Your Exercise Challenge, Facebook Friend

Hey girl!  I cringe. Do I dare open it? I do, of course. It’s a new friend I’ve followed on social media, so I try to be kind and just make an excuse as to why I don’t want to do any weight loss challenges. Just 30 minutes a day, it’s so simple. You can make time to work out if you wanted to! You should take care of yourself. I run low on excuses after a minute because hey, you’re absolutely right. There is an extra 30 minutes in my day spent scrolling through Facebook and Pinterest. OK, if we...

Keep Reading

Sorry Gym, We Just Aren’t Working Out

In: Fitness
Sorry Gym, We Just Aren’t Working Out www.herviewfromhome.com

  Dear Gym, After four long years, I feel our relationship has come to an end. I doubt you are surprised by this since we have been seeing each other less and less frequently ever since 2016. But I wanted to end things between us now, before we both end up with too many regrets. Now, I know when people say “It’s not you, it’s me,” that is usually a lie. But I graciously admit that most of the blame falls on me. After all, I have been seeing someone else…on the side. I tried as hard as I could...

Keep Reading

How Zumba Gave Me Back My Social Life

In: Fitness, Journal, Relationships
How Zumba Gave Me Back My Social Life www.herviewfromhome.com

There’s a spacious park near my home that has a gravel trail in our community for walkers and joggers to enjoy. For years, I frequented this park with my close friend while our children were in school. We met each morning with our water bottles in hand and tackled five miles on the track in the blistering sun. Despite the heat and achy muscles, I enjoyed the 90 minutes of “girl time” I shared with my friend. We laughed and chatted about everything—from our family life, fun vacation spots, the stress of raising teens, concerns for our elderly parents, and...

Keep Reading

Goodbye Size 6

In: Fitness, Health, Mental Health
Goodbye Size 6 www.herviewfromhome.com

Dear Size 6, It’s hard to tell you this, but it’s time we part ways. I’m both relieved and ready to finally let you go. I’m sure you saw this coming, didn’t you? It’s just… Things change. People change. I’ve changed. I’ve grown through the years, and well, you haven’t. Oh, we had our fun together, didn’t we? You and I fit perfectly. I felt spunky and full of life when I was with you, doing all the things we did and feeling like we were meant to be. Oh, the memories of our glory days… We were so good...

Keep Reading

Mama, It Takes More Than Six Weeks

In: Fitness, Health, Mental Health, Motherhood
Mama, It Takes More Than Six Weeks www.herviewfromhome.com

A study from 2011 by Dr. Julie Wray at the University of Salford has recently been revived and is making the rounds on parenting sites. The finding from Dr. Wray’s research boils down to: women need more than six weeks to recover from childbirth. In other breaking news, water is wet and the sky appears to be blue. The vast majority of women who have had a baby are sitting there thinking, “I could have told you that without a study.” Look at it logically: six weeks is a month and a half. It took nine months, or somewhere in...

Keep Reading

Working Out with Kids

In: Fitness, Health, Kids, Motherhood
Working Out with Kids www.herviewfromhome.com

It’s no secret that I love working out. It has helped me drop 130 pounds in a year and clears my mind after a hectic day. Working out is my “Me Time.” Wait a minute, did I really say “Me time?” If you are a mom, you probably laughed out loud at the phrase “Me Time,” not even understanding what on earth that means. When you become a Mom, “Me Time” becomes as rare as a fine wine– it tastes amazing, but you only get it on special occasions. Yet, I can’t wait and just workout out on special occasions....

Keep Reading

What This Mom Discovered When She Was Body Shamed on Social Media

In: Fitness, Health, Journal, Mental Health, Relationships
What This Mom Discovered When She Was Body Shamed on Social Media www.herviewfromhome.com

I love social media. You know that whole Facebook memories thing? I have a feeling that someone, at one time or another, was thinking up all the ways they could make moms of young children spend even more time on Facebook. “Why not let them look back at all the old photos of their kids when they were babies?” they said. Why not make my ovaries burst and make me go tearfully hover over all my sleeping children while wondering how in the world they have gotten so big, is more like it! Do I post adorable pictures of my...

Keep Reading

Feeling Like You Just Can’t? This Record-Setting Mama Has A Message For You

In: Fitness, Health, Inspiration
Feeling Like You Just Can’t? This Record-Setting Mama Has A Message For You . www.herviewfromhome.com

(Feature image via Gameface Media-Bruce Muhlbradt) Running a marathon is hard. Pushing a jogging stroller full of kidlets (and actually jogging) is hard. Heck, just being a mom is hard. Put all three together and it sounds like a nightmare waiting to happen. One rock-star mama made it a dream. Theresa Marie Pitts, a Montana mom of eight, shares a refreshing perspective on achieving that dream. For her, doing tough things is sweetened by including her “whys” in the journey: “Nothing else brings more joy to my heart than being a mother. So, in celebration of life and motherhood, I chose...

Keep Reading

How a Middle School Track Meet Set me on an Unhealthy Course

In: Fitness, Health, Mental Health, Weight Loss
How a Middle School Track Meet Set me on an Unhealthy Course www.herviewfromhome.com

If I introduced myself to you today, the first things you might notice about me are my muscular arms, shoulders, and legs. Based on these features, you might also assume I am an athlete. If I met you in 2011, however, you’d make a much different evaluation of my physical fitness. At 300 pounds, it was quite clear that exercising was not a priority of mine. In fact, it was something I completely avoided because the fear of failure was so debilitating I was not even willing to try. This fear, which set me up for over a decade of...

Keep Reading

Dear Woman in the Yellow Sweatshirt at the Gym

In: Fitness, Health, Healthy Living, Weight Loss
Dear Woman in the Yellow Sweatshirt at the Gym www.herviewfromhome.com

Dear Woman in the Yellow Sweatshirt: It was late one Thursday night. I had just finished a body pump class. I went to fill my water bottle in preparation for getting a few laps in on the track. I was so focused on the workout I just completed I really didn’t notice anything. Until I noticed you. You walked up the stairs. It was incredibly hot and humid out, but you wore long, black, baggy sweats and a long, yellow sweatshirt that you kept pulling down. As you hit the top of the stairs you looked around hoping the “I’m...

Keep Reading

Get our FREE phone wallpaper to encourage you as the new school year begins

It's bittersweet for a mother to watch her child grow—but you both are ready to soar.