Those stupid, real, and scary feelings of inadequacy – fitness

photography: ASHLEE BROOKE PHOTOGRAPHY|makeup: JESSICA MARIA MAKEUP|hair: EMMAS PARLOUR| outfit: ONZIE.COM

Onzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UT Onzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UT Onzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTOnzie | Salt Lake City, UTThroughout this entire fitness journey, I’ve been really really real. I’ve tried to show you my struggles and flaws and everything in between. But, there is one thing that I don’t think I’ve ever written about and I think it’s time I share this part of my story. I don’t know about you. But, I am my worst critic. Throughout this crazy fitness journey that I’ve taken myself on… there has been one thing that has held me back. One thing that I still haven’t been able to get over. MYSELF. When I first saw these pictures. I had really ridiculous thoughts. “My arms look huge!” “Look at those legs!” … I can’t be the only one that looks at pictures of themselves and sees inadequacies. But why? Why does it have to be that way? Now, more than ever before, these feelings have come to the surface.

This last Fall, when I had moved to Salt Lake, I was anxious and scared, and living in a big city for the first time in my entire life was harder for me than I ever expected. I started “modeling” more and became nervous and anxious. I knew I didn’t have the “typical modeling body”, I knew there were way more beautiful, young girls out there. So why me? The pressure started to get to me. Not a lot of people will admit this, but the pressure to continue to lose weight and tone and look better and better in this social media world is sooo real. I remember thinking this thought one day and wondering where that pressure came from… was I just making it up? Not even an hour later, I received a comment on my instagram from a reader, telling me that I shouldn’t lose anymore weight because I was a “relatable goal for her.” I, of course, took total offense to that comment and interpreted it as a, “You are just fat enough for us to relate to you… thanks!” It bothered me for days… and because I decided to take offense to that comment, I started becoming more nervous and self conscious about what I posted. I decided I needed to workout more and eat less. I was impatient and tired. I was more thin than I had ever been, but I wasn’t happy… I was obsessed with becoming thin… not becoming healthy. I wanted the thigh gap and the skinny arms and the perfectly thin pictures. What I was doing wasn’t healthy or possible for me to sustain if I was going to have a healthy, balanced life and be a great mother and wife… and at the end of the day… that is all that matters! I remember my sister making a comment about my weight and thinking how crazy she sounded. ME? Too skinny? YEAH RIGHT!! Like that has ever happened in my life…

When we got together during Christmas time, I made sure to indulge a bit more, just to show them all that I didn’t have a problem… it’s funny, how you can work so hard and all the sudden it become an obsession, so much so that you don’t even see what it might be doing to you or your family… I decided to start to go to CrossFit more regularly. In a gym, with a coach who pushed me to lift more and become strong and see my potential. But, really, all I saw were my thighs getting bigger and my arms not fitting in my shirts. It’s crazy, I know it is. But the pressure and “competition” in this city is fierce, and comparing myself began to change me. Suddenly the passion of what I was preaching so passionately to my readers became something I needed to passionately hear for myself. Why does beauty have to come from the number on the scale? That question has never rang truer than at this moment in my life. I am stronger and healthier now than ever before, and I should be so proud of that.

I wanted to share these insecurities I’ve been struggling with the last few months with all of you because I am a fighter, and instead of being something I wasn’t and continuing down that path of unhealthiness… I decided that being healthy and happy was more important. Honestly, it’s a daily struggle, even now. Of course I feel great and am healthy and happy, but deep in my mind that evil person inside aka Satan… tells me that just a few months ago I was smaller, skinnier, better.

See.

Doesn’t that sound ungrateful and crazy?

YOU are the greatest tool that Satan has to rip you apart!

and guess what…

He will never stop…

He will try and try again.

So how do I overcome it? How do YOU overcome it? Honestly, I don’t no. My husband helps a lot and so do my children, and I feel the most beautiful when I am closest to the Lord. When I am loving others. When I am serving my husband and children. I try to pretend like it doesn’t overwhelm my thoughts every day…but it does. This post doesn’t really have a solution or a happy ending. I am right in the middle of learning to except this body that I have. But, when I do find a solution… I will write about it, I’m sure. My thoughts and feelings and blog posts don’t always have to be motivating and happy. This one is just raw and real. I guess, if anything… I just want you to know, you are not alone. Satan is real and will never ever stop making us feel inadequate or not good enough, no matter how fit or beautiful we are.

It’s funny how I can feel so strongly about all you moms and strong women out there really loving yourselves. And I mean that with all my heart. If only you all could see how beautiful you are and see your potential that you have!!!

We will all figure it out.

One day!
But until then,

Let’s just keep praying, having faith, and remember what we are…

Daughters of God!

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Showing 27 comments
  • Katie
    Reply

    I love that, “I feel most beautiful when I am closest to the Lord”
    This is so true but feels hard to maintain most days. With my body changing with pregnancy, it has been a challenge to feel as good as I once did about myself. But to constantly have that reminder that I am doing something for God by bringing this child into the world that He already has big plans for is so reassuring and makes me feel like a beautiful piece of the puzzle even when I think everything just looks strange and not part of my body anymore.
    Blessings,
    Katie

    http://www.agirlnamedkatie.com

    • Sadie Jane Sabin
      Reply

      I know exactly how you feel but you are exactly right!! Aren’t our bodies just amazing!!?? They fuel and give birth to our beautiful babies!! Stay strong and know that the Lord sees how beautiful your body is, especially when changing and sacrificing by carrying babies. You are wonderful! XOXO

  • Tarah
    Reply

    That’s funny, because when I looked at the pictures, I thought “Wow! She looks amazing!”

    We are our own worst critics in everything we do. I used to verbally point out things about me I didn’t like. One day my husband said “I don’t even see the flaws you’re pointing out until you do. Maybe if you stop pointing them out to yourself, you’ll stop seeing them too.” I married a smart man.

    So while I’m not perfect, I’ve started to verbally point out my positive points. And I’m starting to focus on the good while trying to push the negativity out. I want to love my body as it is and as it changes for the better. I want my sons to see what a strong, confident woman looks like. I want to be that strong, confident woman.

    There is always someone out there that wishes they looked like you, flaws and all. You are amazing, your beauty comes from your heart, not your jean size.

    • Sadie Jane Sabin
      Reply

      Such great advice Tarah!! Focusing on the positive is definitely something that will always help more than negative thinking!! You are wonderful for taking your husbands advice and switching your thinking around!!! I definitely think of you as an example! XOXO

  • heidi
    Reply

    I’m so sorry. That was my instagram comment you quoted. I feel horrible now and that was not my intention at all. I just meant that I thought you looked amazing and it’s the way I WISH i looked! I didn’t mean for it to ruin your day, week, life!! sometimes i really hate this social media thing. we make comments with one intent, and it’s taken in another way. Please accept my apology, I can relate to this post more than you know and i just needed you to know that i did not mean you were fat enough for me to relate to. When i see you i don’t see fat. i see muscle. i see tone. i see determination. i see strength. i see a beautiful mother and wife. i see someone i am inspired by.

    • Sadie Jane Sabin
      Reply

      Beautiful Heidi, please please please understand that I know your intentions were not malicious when you posted that comment! I state in the post that “I DECIDED TO GET OFFENDED!” But, that is clearly based off of my insecurities that I am trying to work through! I love that you follow and read my blog and I feel grateful to know a little bit about you!!! You didn’t ruin my week or life and really, it was just one example of how social media can be ridiculous because we read into every single comment… you are wonderful!! Don’t think any other way!!! XOXO

  • Chloe Kepner
    Reply

    You have put into words, what i have been feeling for a very long time, just in slightly different ways. I have a nagging, constant problem with comparing myself to other bodies. I don’t mean to be ungrateful for what I already have. It’s just so hard, and I think all human beings feel this way from time to time. I blog about body image often, and I know aaaallll the advice to give, but I’m terrible at following it. haha (oops) Thank you for being so real. It’s a great perspective for me to read, because you are my ultimate fitness goals. I idolize you! 😉 Wish I knew you in person.. you’re just so GOOD. Thank you.

  • Katie
    Reply

    thank you for sharing this. i often struggle and obsess over my weight, and find myself wanting to work out more or eat healthier only for the number on the scale to go down, when it lately has not been moving. It is taking the joy out of working out and the joy out of my days sometimes. I know in my heart it is such a waste of my energy and time to worry about that, but it is a battle to let it go. I think you’re right in that you will always be looking to be more fit, thinner, whatever if you source of happiness is not right. I need God to fulfill me. and my family and other real things, not how much I weigh or what I don’t like about myself. Thank you for being honest. I think you are beautiful and strong and I love your blog and your family.

  • Ungria
    Reply

    Sadie,

    I relate this post in so many ways. Some days being healthy is the goal and then another day is spent just thinking about losing the 5 or 10 or whatever more pounds. Being healthy really is an uphill battle that we have to fight but it can also get the best of me. There is so much courage in vulnerability as we all choose to be brave,

    Thank you for sharing

  • Rachel Gainer
    Reply

    Thank you for ripping this topic open and making it okay to confess to the public that the pressure to be thin is real, and the comparison trap is real, and the fear of judgement is real, and Satan’s taunting whispers are very, very real. I have always struggled with body image. A year ago, when I first entered the IG space, I was completely open and honest about these feelings of inadequacy and the struggles in the journey. But over the last year, I have also made so many incredible fitness friends, who I love and admire with all my heart, but a little voice inside of me is always tempting me to compare myself and find my weaknesses, saying, “You are too thick to post fitness photos of yourself or to try to become a trainer. Who would even listen to you if you don’t have flat abs?” As hard as I fight these thoughts, they come at me and make me feel so self-conscious and like I have nothing worth giving and no business trying. But like you, I know that Satan is simply working overtime to make me hate my body. He can’t tempt me to misuse it, so he wants me to hate it. Because he doesn’t get to have a body. Perhaps he is jealous. Perhaps he simply wants to prove we are not worthy of the bodies God gave us. But he is wrong!! Keep fighting his voice of self-hatred and ingratitude and insecurity. Keep digging deep and going to the Source of all love and beauty and power–our beloved Heavenly Father. You are beautiful, and even more so for honoring your fears and insecurities.

  • Mollie
    Reply

    thanks for vocalizing such a scary thing for us women. something we all deal with but hardly ever share. girl you are amazing.

  • Lexie
    Reply

    Wow, thank you for this post. I’ve been having similar feelings this week. I feel so inadequate and I’m so hard on myself. Your story is very inspiring and I love reading your blog. I’ve been doing Crossfit for almost a year now, and over the last 2 weeks I’ve hit a point where I don’t feel motivated to go. I feel frustrated by my lack of progress and the struggle. I needed this post today to help be gain perspective and get back on track.

  • Andrea Fernandez
    Reply

    Wow! I know you said that maybe this post wouldn’t be inspiring. But it reflects what you are, it shows your daily struggles, not the beautiful and happy woman everyone sees on pictures. Which you really are, but believe me, it’s so good to know we don’t struggle alone. You’re post was inspiring, and I’m sure it helps so many women out there (like me) to deal with their insecurities and most of all, to trust in The Lord and to look for Him. We can be our worst enemies, cause if we don’t believe in ourselves, who will? I wanna be a fighter…I don’t wanna let my fears, my insecurities, my daily struggles take hold of me and bring me down. I wanna trust in the Lord and know that he’ll help me through everything. Thank you for sharing Sadie, you motivate me to keep fighting!

  • Lee
    Reply

    One thing that stood out from conference was that the media shows the minority parading as the majority. This is no less true in social media. We gravitate towards one definition of beautiful, because it’s what we’re told is “normal”. Logistically speaking: cheaper clothing is not patterned to fit on multiple body types, so if it doesn’t fit us (I’m very similar in body type and shape to you) it’s no indicator of our health or beauty. It’s cheapest for companies to make it for a “clothes hanger body ” and then mass produce. Real haute couture is made to fit a body, which is time consuming and expensive and cannot be mad produced. It’s all about control and profit. Just something to consider when the dressing room depresses you. I know that I often judge myself unfairly because I don’t have tiny arms or a long thin torso, but I AM healthy and I am beautiful. Ps, I’m learning to sew… Ha ha ha

  • Heidi
    Reply

    I was just thinking the same thing the other day…when is enough, enough? I am still on my fitness journey and happy to be…I have come a long way with still a long way to go but I’m happy with where I am at…however daily I get dressed and change outfits making sure my belly (my problem area) isn’t being clung to by my shirt or that my shirt isn’t to short…when did I stop not loving my healthy body? my body that never gets sick and that is strong in so many ways…my husband loves me for who I am and how I look however I still feel the need to impress the world we live in… society is a killer not to mention what social media does to the crazy in us!

    Sadie, your blog and journey are so real and that’s why I follow you! I love and appreciate your honestly, hard work and determination!
    xo Heidi

  • Ashton Tilton Barrett
    Reply

    The funny thing is that as I was scrolling through the pictures for this post I was thinking, “Wow! She looks amazing!! And oh so happy!!”

    Thank you so much for this post. I’m almost 8 months pregnant and feeling quite “whale-ish” to say the least! I’ve been a little down on myself for the last couple of weeks, noticing and critiquing every “flaw” of my body. What you shared in this post though couldn’t have been more perfect. I’ve tried to be healthier this pregnancy than I was with my first and work out everyday. But instead of focusing on my successes of this pregnancy, I’ve been focusing on how I could be doing better and where I fall short. Comparing myself incessantly with people I see on social media. It can be such a trap! So THANK YOU. Thank you for sharing something so personal. Something that reminded me that as important as it is to be healthy, it is just as important to recognize my worth as a daughter of God! You were SOOO right when you talked about feeling beautiful when you serve others and serve your husband and kids. It reminded me to recognize those acts of service as successes and as acts that make me feel beautiful.

    I think you’re SO gorgeous, but more importantly you have a beautiful soul. Your story has been one that has made a difference in my life and really jump-started me on a path to a healthier, happier me. Thank you for all you stand for! Youda youda best!:)

  • Hallie
    Reply

    Thank you for the post. It was so encouraging!

  • Rachel Clare
    Reply

    I so appreciate reading this post. I, too, am the healthiest I’ve ever been. I’ve lost a lot of weight, but it’s taken years (between having 4 kids). My BMI is in the healthy range. My weight is where it should be. I’m wearing a size 6. I was the chubby friend in high school and now I wear a size 6. My old skinny friends now look to me for nutrition advice, marathon-training advice, HEALTH advice. Last week I tried paddle-boarding for the first time. It was awesome. I’m in love. And a friend took a picture of me. I was all set to make it my new “profile pic”….. until I looked at it and immediately picked myself apart, top to bottom. It will be a battle for me every.single.day. It will be a battle if I go on to lose 15 more pounds. It will be a battle forever, but I intend to continue to fight the adversary and remind myself that my Father in Heaven loves me and created me and to remember that I am made in His image. We ARE daughters of God, and when I look at my three girls (and even my one son), I am immediately reminded that I need to be a role model of health and self-worth for them. They need to learn to love themselves from ME. We can do this! And, for what it’s worth, I think you look like a million bucks. <3

  • Jen
    Reply

    You wrote this about me!!! Monday, I sat in front of the computer, ready to post a family picture to Facebook from Easter and I couldn’t…I ripped myself apart. I look fat, look at my stomach, ugh, you can see my legs, they are so white, look how big I look, my hair is puffy, my arms…Gross. I tried to edit it, then, I walked away. Couple hours later, I posted it, and people gushed at how lovely it was. So what is it that I don’t like about myself…because everyone else sees something really beautiful. You’re not alone Sadie, you are a gorgeous, beautiful, human being.

  • Tiffany Nay
    Reply

    I just got back from visiting family for a week in Utah, and in that short amount of time I felt it! That pressure. I felt judged everywhere I went, even though I know it was my own insecurities just comparing myself to the women I was seeing. But it’s like tangible! It’s so real, Definitely not in your head. I could never live there again, kudos to you for keeping it real and trying to continually focus on what really matters! <3

  • Marisa
    Reply

    I absolutely agree with everything you said. I recently lost 30 pounds and got into the best shape of my life. It has been a lot of work but I have really enjoyed it. A lot of people around me have been commenting on how great I look which was uncomfortable, especially at first, but I eventually decided to use that as an opportunity to encourage other people to get healthy. Recently, I have gained back 5 pounds from my lowest weight. It’s amazing how just 5 pounds can make you feel like you are huge again. I know the difference is minimal but you start to obsess about every pound. If people don’t make comments to me anymore the thought comes into my head that I must not look good any more. Of course it is all ridiculous but it is a real thing. You are right that we need to love ourselves and focus on being healthy and happy and not on the number on the scale. I think we also need to find a balance in life between eating healthy, enjoying food, working out and spending time doing other things. Great post!

  • Brooke
    Reply

    You are awesome and beautiful! Thank you for sharing something so personal. This is something I struggle with everyday. But when I look at the big picture, like you said, God and family, it makes it easier!

  • Lynn Manning
    Reply

    Wow- this is the first post of yours I’ve read and how perfect! This definitely rings true to me. I always used to joke with my friends that it’s my job to be thin. But over the past few months I realized it’s my job to love myself, help my clients love themselves regardless of size, and to focus on overall health. I’m working out less, spending more time on self reflection, relaxation, socialization… And I’m not as “fit” as I was a few months ago (maybe, I don’t track any more) but I’m much happier… Which is much healthier. Stay true to yourself qt. You are genuine, inspiring, and indeed beautiful in more ways then one.

  • Tina Martinez
    Reply

    I stumbled onto your blog this morning and I’m loving it! You.LOOK.AMAZING. Healthy and fit and beautiful. JUST like all those other fitness models out there, I looked at you and thought, WOW, life goals. 😉 We are so hard on ourselves as women, and you’re absolutely right that society makes it even harder to embrace ourselves. I’ve been working REALLY hard the past 2 years to get into better shape and improve on my current fitness. I can run a 5k in 23 mins. I can deadlift over 200lbs. I fit into a size 6 easily. YET, just yesterday I was complaining to my husband how I NEEDED to work harder. BE better. He looked at me and simply said “You’re too hard on yourself. You have twins. You wake up for 5am workouts everyday. Be kind to your body.” And he’s right. Loving yourself shouldn’t be hard. It should be one of the most natural things we can do. That’s what makes it SO AWESOME to have a community of women lifting each other up. And I applaud you for being so honest! Keep on being Amazing Sadie Jane!

  • kristen duke
    Reply

    I’m hopping around your site tonight looking for some inspiration. I love your honesty, now I want to hear more about growing up with 13 siblings in the country! Wowzers! I keep trying to get “stronger” but feel lost…trying to decide if I should hire a personal trainer, but I don’t want to do it long term…want to do more weights, but not sure what to do. I’m motivated, just kinda confused on what to do daily, and how to best change it up. Thanks for sharing your story!

  • Louise
    Reply

    I’m so glad I came across this post – I can’t even tell you how much I relate to exactly this! I need to work on my own self-image /confidence! I’d have thought at my grand old age of 44 that I would have overcome these feelings by now and be content with what I’ve got! I’m healthy, strong and I look after myself with healthy eating and yoga etc so why can’t I get over the size of my upper arms and thighs?
    Its time to conquer this!
    All I really want is to age as well as possible – I’m not expecting to become a model!
    Thank you for sharing this (even though it was a couple of years ago)!

  • Torrie
    Reply

    I know this is an older post, but I just recently started reading more about your journey. I’m (somewhat) in the same boat as you — I’ve always been fairly heavy and over the years have gathered bits and pieces of knowledge that have helped me become healthier. I’m still not quite yet at where I want to be, but I’m getting closer. I wanted to comment, though, because I’ve found that the times in my life when I’m truly happiest are the times when I feel healthiest, have a desire to better take care of my body, and notice that any weight I need to lose seems to come off more easily. On the opposite side of the spectrum, the times when I nitpick, focus on documenting every.single.calorie. I take in, and stress myself out with the whole process, I don’t tend to see any improvements. Loving ourselves and our bodies really goes a long way, and both are crucial to the whole journey.

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