In her line of work, trainer and health coach Kim Beach encounters so many women with a variety of body struggles. Here she explains her own battles with body image, and why Taryn Brumfitt's 'Embrace' documentary really hit home for her.
Watching Embrace I could totally relate to Taryn and her journey. I work with women every day and I think her story is going to resonate with just about all of them.
The body image movement is so powerful and it’s something we seriously need to think about, especially when it comes to the next generation. Too often we see the media celebrating women for having the 'perfect' body - whatever they believe that to be.
Despite discussions about Photoshop making us more aware that the bodies we see in magazines aren't real, these images of the same type of female figure continue to flood the media and the effects often manage to creep in and it can be damaging for so many women in all stages of life.
I completely understand Taryn wanting to get her body back following her pregnancy. After I had my two kids, I trained really hard for nine months and competed in a bodybuilding competition to see how far I could take my body. I was trying to get into the best shape of my life and, in the end, the experience turned into an obsession and created a very unhealthy mindset.
There was no balance. I was cranky all the time and I couldn’t enjoy being a mum because I was living this crazy, restricted existence. I look back at the photos of being on stage and I just cringe! What this experience did to my body was so unhealthy and I know now I went way too far.
Once you have a baby, your body changes but this is something that should be celebrated - you've just created a miracle! What I realise now, is that the focus shouldn’t be on your body it should be on enjoying every minute as a family without feelings of guilt or rushing to get your body into great shape.
Looking at the big picture, we all only get one body and we need to nurture it, respect it and fuel it well. Focus on being fit and healthy, and don't torture your body with fad diets and quick fixes - remember you want to live for the long haul.
Try and find balance between natural whole foods and treats, and when you get into a rhythm, I hope you'll find the confidence to shine.
Positivity is contagious and I believe every woman has the ability to encourage other women to feel their best - even if it is just a smile on the street or a compliment, it really does go a long way. Believing in yourself allows you to leave the negativity and the feelings of being judged behind you.
Everyone has their own sparkle, don’t let anyone dull yours!
Embrace is available to watch on Foxtel Anytime.