Growing up I was always interested in fashion. In fact my start was for a few of my Barbie’s who wore cut up and styled socks for gowns. That was until my mom started looking for my socks matches and then that was the end of that. Well, that was the end of the socks. But that only stirred me to find other avenues. My next adventure was into paper dolls. When our house ran out of paper my mother took me to sewing classes and the rest is history.
While I was learning to make clothing my only model was myself. Of course it was! I was designing everything I was making for me and occasionally for my identical body double of a cousin. (Her mother is a seamstress who taught me everything I know.) I felt that I could open any magazine and pick out anything a model was wearing and wear it the same. Because I was a size zero, and only lacking about four inches of height, I was shaped like the girls in the magazines.
Surprisingly enough though, I hated the way my body was shaped. I had no bottom and lacked any boobs. I blamed it on the fact that I was flat chested. I blamed my self hatred on the fact that I had the smallest butt on the planet. I sometimes lamented over the fact that I could have tried modeling if I wasn’t one inch below average height. In some ways I thought that would have brought me to terms with my body.
I played sports in high school and then in college, all while living on a diet of Code Red Mountain Dew and Tacobell. (In high school it was Code Red Mountain Dew and Pizza Bites.) Even though I ate a ton of food I was still a measly 103lbs and often asked if I was anorexic. While super rude and inappropriate to ask anyone ever, I realized I didn’t look healthy. But often the comments came in were, “well you’re lucky, you have the body of a model.”
Did I want the “body of a model” when it meant I looked like I had an eating disorder and no muscle in my whole body? My dilemma was that I was so worried about working out and bulking up I didn’t even try. Until a good friend of my slapped some sense into me. Not only that, some of the girls I was going to school with began to lift weights and working out on a different level. After a year or so of watching them transform into fit and toned individuals, I realized I wanted to be fit as well. Enter changing my diet and lifting weights.
So what really changed? Well first my diet. I still eat chocolate and strawberry milkshakes and Tacobell. But I also eat fruits and lean meats and vegetables daily. I started lifting weights. And I now weigh twenty pounds more. What hasn’t changed? My pants size hasn’t changed. Muscle weighs more than fat. Apparently, it weighs a lot more than fat.
My vision of what a model should look like has also changed. I used to use the thinnest girls who applied and looked closest to the girls in the twenty fashion magazines I subscribe to. Now, I pick girls who closely resemble the fit women in the additional twenty fitness magazines I subscribe to. If this was a short text I would have typed “lol” by now due to the shear ridiculous amount of magazines that show up at my house each week. Are their body types a reach for most people? Yes. But, they are a healthy reach. It’s never bad to strive to be healthy and fit if you set realistic goals and know that fitness is in every size. I hope my choice of models encourages that.