for the 40+ woman!

It’s crazy but true, some of the worst support systems in the world are other women…friends, family, co-workers.

untitledI see this every time I start a new group of Challengers….it usually starts around now, in the first few weeks of the Challenge. The innuendos and soft undercuts start coming…

“You’re too skinny”.
“You’re obsessive about training.”
“You’re no fun anymore.”
“Oh come on, let loose. It won’t kill you.”

Here’s the deal ladies!…when we get healthy, we become a challenge to other less healthy people. Why? Because we become a mirror that reflects them back to themselves…it’s just part of the journey. It always saddens me to see women drawn back into an unhealthy lifestyle OR stop their healthy living program to ease the nasty comments, rolling eyes, and criticisms coming our way.
Like how about this one….”
I hope when you’re done competing you will stop all this silly stuff,” or “you’re no fun anymore,” or my favourite (and this has personally been directed at me), “You’ve gotta have implants to win a show”. really? Check out Erin Stern, or Rachel McLish or last year’s Overall winner at the BC’s.
One gal mentioned she’s not sure if her friend was being supportive or not…her friend looked down at this woman’s newly-manicured toenails (she’s competing shortly) and told her “nice, but oh, they look a tad bit too long.” This is the old classic give-them-a-compliment-but-undercut-them-slightly-afterward tactic. Nice….!
I promptly told this woman that indeed she was at the receiving end of jealously and an inner unrest in the other woman who had neither the strength or discipline to improve her own life, so she was tryin  to ever-so-subtly bring her down a notch.

Ladies, IGNORE THIS! If you stick with your healthy eating and training lifestyle, you eventually find another ‘tribe’, the healthy kind, because you’ll find you have less in common. It’s not bad to leave your old life / friends / community or tribe behind if it means you can move toward health, vitality, and power.

You have 2 choices: you can either move forward or you slide right back into un-healthiness again, and re-join the old pack! DON’T let that happen! They chose their life, you chose yours. You don’t need to join them on their self-destructive path! Nor are you responsible for them. And if they make you feel guilty about not partying, always going to the gym, or not ‘hanging out’ because you’d rather be moving forward, that’s THEIR deal, not yours, but they are trying to sucker you into the old ways, to make themselves feel better.

It’s almost as insidious as the druggie or alcoholic that reams all over a newly-sober person who has walked away from that life. I’ve lived on the other side of the track, like a lot of you. And I made a choice many moons ago to make the most of my body, this life and this opportunity. And I know it all too well with parents who died in their 40′s and my son who lives life from a wheelchair, and can never know the beauty of a strong, working body.

Just walk away. You can let go with love. You don’t have to preach or fight back, just smile, grab your bowl of chicken breast and greens, and know that you are on the right path – YOUR PATH and at any time they are welcome to join you. Surprisingly some do, most don’t. Live your life wearing your fullest colours. It’s how it’s supposed to be!

So to all those apparently well-meaning and so-called supportive women out there, we’re on to you! And we’re throwing it back at you! For me, I never get those comments anymore, because I’ve been on this path way too long and everyone knows it’s my lifestyle now. Besides, my ‘tribe’ has changed slowly over the years, and there is no explaining or defending to do ’cause we all live the same way: empowered, healthy, supportive, caring.

Stay strong!