“This is my body. This is not a before picture. This is not an after picture,” wrote Molly Galbraith, the 31-year-old woman behind the powerful Facebook post that has gone viral and quickly catapulted her to the forefront of the body positive movement.
Her message, which accompanied a photo of herself on a “random Tuesday in December,” walking on the beach in her bikini, has touched a nerve with woman across the country. During a time when most women are narrowing down which tried-and-true resolutions will help transform them into the perfect specimen, here is a woman publicly saying: my body is fine the way it looks today, the way it looked yesterday and the way it will look tomorrow. It’s a powerful message that has resonated with more than 115,000 people on social media.
Galbraith, a personal trainer and co-founder of Girls Gone Strong, an online fitness community “designed by women for women,” decided against making a 2016 New Year’s resolution and opted instead to send a message to others that it’s ok to love yourself just as you are right now, without tweaking, refining or changing your body. In her post, she chronicles the different shapes, sizes and weight fluctuations she’s experienced due to the various health challenges she’s faced, like Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune thyroid disorder and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). Her post read, in part:
“This is a body that loves protein and vegetables and queso and ice cream.
This is a body that loves bent presses and pull-ups and deadlifts and sleep.
This is a body that has been abused with fast food and late nights and stress.
This is a body that has been pushed to the brink of leanness in figure competitions and maximum strength in powerlifting meets.
This is a body that begged for mercy when it was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s and PCOS.
This is a body that has been called:
– too fat
– too thin
– too masculine
– too strong
– too weak
– too big
– too skinny
…all within the same week.”
Galbraith’s refreshingly honest post has helped revisit a conversation that many women have been having through various social media outlets in the last few years. Body acceptance is a topic that continues to be explored online as women are faced with external messages in the media and society about how their bodies are supposed to look. In an interview with ABC News Galbraith says, “I’m so grateful for the opportunity to share my story. It gives an idea of the state of the world right now. We’re fighting back against the multi-billion dollar fitness industry that prays on the insecurities of woman to sell them fads and quick fixes they don’t need. It’s this goal of getting woman the information they do need to live their happiest lives.” Her much needed message is simple, uplifting and reminds women to shift their focus towards building up their confidence and self-esteem, rather than attempting to change their bodies to fit an unattainable societal norm.