Thursday, 16 March 2017

On body positivity and chocolate

A few years ago, I started following a load of "fitspo" accounts on Instagram.

You know, they post gym selfies, colourful vegan meals and transformation pics showing how their bodies have gone from flat-stomach to defined-abs.

And you follow them in the hope that they might inspire you to be fitter, healthier, stronger, slimmer and better.

That they might help you lose a few pounds, muster the motivation to go to the gym when you just want to go home, and find the strength to resist the box of biscuits when it's passed round the office.

Lord knows it's bloody hard.
(Re the above: never get between a woman and a chocolate fountain.)

But I've recently realised that these Instagram accounts aren't helping me at all.

Because whenever I see pictures of these tiny women with their thigh-gaps, bikini-bridges and slim, toned bodies, it doesn't inspire me, it makes me feel bad about my own body.

I don't look like them. I have a wobbly tummy and a layer of squidge all over my body. I'm not even sure if I have ribs, collar- or cheekbones because you sure as hell can't see them.

Now I'm sure the women behind these Instagram accounts did not set out to make others feel bad about their looks.

I'm sure they want to inspire us.

But I've realised that's not what's happening to me.

I applaud the influencers lifting the curtain and revealing how you can make your body look completely different based on how you stand.

❌THIS IS NOT A TRANSFORMATION PHOTO❌ I've jumped on the #30secondbeforeandafter 🕐 challenge and have decided after much hesitation to share this photo. In the photo on the left I am tilting my pelvis forward, bloating my stomach as much as possible (btw I've got mad bloating skills), hunching my shoulders and slumping. In the photo on the right, I'm standing tall, I'm flexing my stomach, my spine is in proper alignment. Girls, for me this photo really reaffirmed how important it is to take your progress photos with the same posture, lighting, etc. It's not about how big of a transformation you've had. It's not about how skinny you appear to be or how heavy you were when you started your journey. It's not about how you compare to other girls who are on the same week as you. I'll tell you what it IS about: strength, integrity, fortitude--things we strive for each and every day that we wake up and choose to be honest with others, but first and foremost, honest with ourselves about our insecurities, our hopes, our struggles, our triumphs. At first this picture embarrassed me. I wasn't going to share it and I've hung onto it for days debating. I'm doing it now because it's REAL. So jump on the bandwagon or don't--either way, let's work together to keep this community transparent and goal driven! #transformationtuesday #not #honest
A post shared by Cristina Stief (@cristinastief) on

However more than that, I applaud body-positivity Instagrammers.

I recently decided to replace fitspo with body-posi, and d'you know what? I feel much better about myself.

When I first came across bodyposipanda, all I could think was "YAAAASSSS! My body looks like that! This is what most women look like! And she's BEAUTIFUL!"


I'm pretty sure the majority of women dislike their bodies which is totally sad. But I think the reason for that is we're told we have to be slim and toned, yet also have boobs and a bum and a waist and look womanly AND PRACTICALLY NONE OF US LOOK LIKE THAT!

Our bodies just don't do that.

And stressing out about not being slim takes up so much valuable brain space.

Think about how much more we could achieve if we stopped thinking about our bodies all the time?

I don't look like a Victoria's Secret model or a fitness blogger because I really really like chocolate.

I love it so much.

And this is why I'm thrilled to be teaming up with Ferrero Rocher and giving you guys the chance to win some delectable choccies.

They are hundy P some of my favourite chocolates of them all because I live for the chocolate-hazelnut combo - the crunchy roasted hazelnut pieces, the crisp wafer shell, the smooth chocolate...

Excuse me while I wipe drool off my keyboard.
The texture is so unique and I genuinely don't think there's any occasion that wouldn't be improved by a Ferrero Rocher (or three).

So here's what I want you to do: eat chocolate, enjoy it, and don't let yourself feel guilty afterwards.

It's not easy, it's really hard in fact (the not feeling guilty part - the eating part is exceptionally easy). I get food guilt really badly, but we need to stop being so hard on ourselves.

Eating a healthy, balanced diet and nourishing our bodies is important, but so is loving them.

And I don't know about you but chocolate makes me happy.

So enter below and win yourself some delicious chocolatey goodness!

Firstly, you should head to Ferrero Rocher's Facebook page and enter their March competition to win a dinner party for four cooked in your own home. The prize includes a starter, main course and the Dolce dessert plate, alongside drinks pairings, which sounds pretty sweet to me.

Oh, I've actually had the dessert plate and can confirm it is sweet as a nut. (Runners up get boxes of Ferrero Rocher too!)
You literally just comment on one of their posts to enter so you'd be a fool not to, really. A FOOL!

But that's not all, folks. I've also got a lovely little giveaway for you to enter.

I'm so thrilled to have five of these insanely awesome giant Ferrero Rochers (see pic further up this post) to give out to you lovely people so you can enjoy the chocolatey nutty goodness and feel fabulous and sassy and gorgeous like you are.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
So tell me, chums: how do you make sure to focus on feeling body positive and enjoying delicious things like Ferrero Rocher?
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74 comments

  1. I totally agree with the instagram problem! I've started following both bodypostive and fitspo accounts and the mix has really helped! Have you seen Iskra Lawrence's channel? She's big on the bodypositive movement!

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  2. I agree with this! I've got a major sweet tooth and there's not a lot that can't be cured by some good old chocolate. The thing that's helped me is by focusing on making most of my diet pretty healthy - that way I know I'm getting in loads of goodness and well as combining it with some exercise, so a bit of chocolate isn't going to do a lot of harm!
    Jennifer x
    Ginevrella | Wellbeing & Lifestyle

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  3. Love this post!! I also started following fitness insta pages to start losing weight but no one can eat that much kale, surely. Have they ever tried cheesy garlic bread??
    theemeralddove21.blogspot.co.uk

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  4. Love this post! love who you are... and enjoy with every ounce of enjoyingness, a good bit of a choc!

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  5. Love the post! I think everyone should love themselves and there should be no right or wrong when it comes to your own body. bring on the Choc!

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  6. Love this!! I just can't deal with fitspo, it just doesn't inspire me at all!

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  7. I have a sweet tooth but cannot stop myself from having it as then I will eat twice as much. Love the blog.

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  8. Yes! Firstly, this is the best post theme ever. Secondly, it's so true - we need to realise that our bodies sometimes are incapable of ever looking like the "ideals" we get shown all the time. And that's absolutely fine! Also, the more we try and deprive ourselves of foods, the more we're likely to end up gorging on them at a later date - it just creates such an unhealthy relationship with food. So yes to body positivity, regardless of size, ethnicity, ability, age etc.! xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Life, Travel, Italy

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  9. I was so surprised when I read about those photos... Scrolling past, I thought it was a progress pic for sure!

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  10. I find my body looks toned when I wake up and as soon as I've had breakfast I look bloated, never really thought that posture could mean looking totally different in photos.

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  11. Love this post. I think so much time and energy is wasted worrying about our bodies/what we look like and so on and on. Live is for living!
    @fionaseaeagle

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  12. I totally agree, a little bit of what you fancy does you good. We spend so much time worrying and fretting about eating and weight that we really shouldn't, my view is unless weight is causing an extreme danger to your health, then live, eat, drink and be happy !

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  13. Great post thanks! No wonder there are so many people with eating disorders these days - if only we could embrace our bodies and be thankful for what God gave us!

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  14. I like big, huge chocolates!

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  15. Love this!! Being happy and mentally healthy is so much more important that spending your life stressing over those extra pounds. I am so guilty of this but I'm trying really hard to just appreciate my body and how lucky I am to have my health :)

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  16. great blog i just love chocolate

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  17. Great post..its refreshing to see #real images of fabulous curves as most of us have them. I didnt even flinch when I saw the belly roll pic..its so natural, Im more surprised to see extreme skinny

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  18. Great post... People should like who they are and stop comparing themselves to others, we all have faults/things we don't like about ourselves and life is for living! :)

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  19. This is very true. As long as your size is healthy for you then what does it matter?
    Nobody's perfect after they've had kids anyway! ;)

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  20. Yes to pretty much everything you said! ❤️ I'm in my 30s and I'm still not quite there with embracing my body for what it is but with people like bodyposipanda I have hope I'll get there!

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  21. i definitely agree as long as your happy and eat healthy then good look to you not everybody can have the often photoshopped bodies of others fab post xxx

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  22. I've come to the point where I've simply accepted that every individual on this planet has pluses and minuses when it comes to their own body image and it's important to focus on the things that really matter in life.

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  23. Fab post , spot on, I try embrace my figure and I just love chocolate xx

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  24. So many people's life's are touched by eating disorders & self image issues wish I could give them a hug & say you know what it does not matter one bit You You & that's what makes you beautiful :) x

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  25. Bodyposipanda is one of my all time fave insta ladies. I am a recovered anorexic (I was very seriously ill for a lot of my teens) but now I struggled with my weight at the other end of the spectrum. I have found though, the older I've got (I'm 27 now) the more assured I get about my own body. I care a lot less about my jiggly bits. I'm even grateful for my 'big' bum and boobs sometimes. I just wish I could tell 14 year old me this. She was so desperately sad.
    Great post. x

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  26. Love chocolate, got the body to back that up!
    But seriously as long as i feel happy healthy i am comfortable with my body.
    Great post.

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  27. Brilliant blog, I totally agree, I just love the wrong food - to be honest I didn't feel any better about my body when I was 8 stone

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  28. I have no interest in these kind of accounts on Insta! I lost 151lbs and will NEVER look like I want to! Eat the damn chocolate and live, love and laugh :)

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  29. Some interesting thoughts

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  30. I don't think thin necessarily equals healthy. Good food, exercise and healthy living are the key.

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  31. I've often said that a little of what you fancy does you good, and chocolate certainly does me good :)

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  32. This is amazing how much difference posture can make!

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  33. A found this seriously inspiring. Thanks :)

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  34. I totally agree. You can still eat the things you love while losing weight just as long as your careful. Great post. Thanks for sharing

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  35. I have a mummy tummy, stretch marks and cellulite. I honestly don't care about the last two, but wish I could get rid of my tummy.

    I probably won't, because I like chocolate. I can accept that.

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  36. Brilliant post in a world where perfect bodies are seemingly everywhere we need some grounding to realise life just isn't like that

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  37. It's amazing how much difference posture can make. Great post. Xx

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  38. Just as long as you eat balanced diet and feel comfortable.

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  39. Great post! Posture plays such a huge role and I sometimes think prople forhet that. It doesn't help with the way the media portrays their idea of the 'perfect' body!!

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  40. A very refreshing read, thank you

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  41. You have to love yourself first

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  42. I'm glad I found this blog, inspiring

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  43. I absolutely love chocolate (especially Ferrero Rocher!) so would never be able to cut it out of my life...everything in moderation I say and just enjoy living!

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  44. Easy, don't sweat the small stuff (or the giant Ferrero Rocher):)

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  45. Learn to love yourself and you'll glow regardless :)

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  46. Loved the article :) the more real women we see in the media the better :)

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  47. All women are gorgeous but as women we are our own critics and are often are considered ugly or fat if we don't fit the 'norm'. Fabulous prize that would most certainly help me put on more weight but I don't mind as there will be more of me to hug x

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  48. I love Ferrero Rocher - thanks for the lovely giveaway! Rafflecopter entries are in my real name NIKKI HAYES :o)

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  49. Best blog post ive seen in ages,thank you Xx Emma Dormer

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  50. Ferrero Rocher is my most favourite chocolate ever, never seen these ones before, yummy! :-)

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  51. This is such a brilliant post & a fantastic giveaway! You've hit the nail on the head in this post!

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  52. Being a big girl myself, I'm all for body positivity & also would love to gobble down that giant Ferrero Rocher!

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  53. Loved reading this since having my baby who I may add is 3 now iv found it so hard to lose weight!!! But life is short so eat what makes u happy

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  54. I think its time we stopped focusing on peoples bodies and started focusing on the person instead - so much media is dedicated to talking about body shape its a bit overwhelming

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  55. great read,you hit the nail on the head!!!

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  56. I agree live and let live is what I say a bit of what you fancy does you good :) love Ferraro especially my mum thanks for the chance xxx

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  57. I focus on the amazing things my body has done, I made a baby so I have tiger stripes, a mum tum and a bad back. That baby is now nearly 5 so I get plenty of exercise keeping up with him, so what if I'm not toned we all deserve a treat after a long day.

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  58. Great to read your blog! Eat what you want life's to short xx

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  59. This is great! I'm a strong believer in body positivity every woman and man should feel positive and confident in their own skin

    P.S who doesn't love ferrero rochers!

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  60. Absolutely love your blogs. Thoroughly enjoyed reading them. Keep up the great work. Thank you for running such a generous giveaway!

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  61. Fab blog, and fab giveaway #win Thanks for the chance

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  62. Amazing, I can't believe they aren't progressive shots. Just shows what good posture can do!!

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