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Discovering My Healthiest Self

One of the biggest questions I get asked on the blog, in emails, and on social media is: Can you share your weight loss secrets? Sometimes people ask me “Can you share your post-baby workout?”, or “Post about what you eat to lose weight!”  These questions are totally valid, but are fraught with a lot of history for me.  The truth is, today I feel like I’m finally living as my healthiest self– but my path to get here was not about specific diets, certain workouts, or a weight loss routine.  It has been more about changing my entire lifestyle and the way I think about food and about my body.  Today I thought I would share a bit about my body image history with you, and a few of my tips for discovering your healthiest self and feeling great about the skin you’re in!

First of all, I’ll mention that I don’t own a scale.  People ask me (strangely, often) about how much I weigh, how much weight I gained while pregnant, or how much I’ve lost etc.  I much prefer to go off of how I look and feel in my clothes than in a number on the scale. I can say with total authenticity that I am able to separate how my body looks from how I feel about myself as a person– BUT I didn’t always use to think this way!!!! In fact, there was a period of time in my life where I thought incessantly about numbers on a scale, what I was eating and not eating, and picking apart my physical appearance nonstop.  I fell victim to that way of thinking like so many others in our culture, and the truth of the matter is that it made my life so much harder! And (surprise, surprise) also made me endlessly unhappy and consistently insecure.  And there is one thing I know for sure: An unhappy, insecure woman is NEVER the most beautiful woman in the room.

Eva Amurri Martino eats a salad at her marble countertop in her Connecticut kitchen

For a long time, any insecurities I had about myself I would take out on my appearance.  If I was feeling “less than” in my life or unsure of the future, the way that I looked physically would be how I could exercise control and feel as though I was in charge of my own destiny.  I would compare myself to others endlessly, and really pick myself apart.  It started in high school, around the time that my acting career began.  I would look at other girls in my age group who weren’t even built like me, and think that I had to have their bodies to feel better about myself.  Or their perfect skin, their long amazing hair, etc.  I remember one girl I knew in particular who had a very athletic body type (the opposite of mine!) and had very defined ab muscles.  I would get up at 6am every single day before heading off to school and do thirty minutes running on the treadmill and a hundred sit ups to try and achieve a similar look.  I remember feeling like if I could complete this challenge, that it would somehow stand in for all of the other things I hoped to accomplish– that it would prove that I could do what I set my mind to.  How I wish now that I had “set my mind” to something much more productive or philanthropic than a six pack! I’ve mentioned before that I’m a very Type-A personality and super goal-oriented.  There is beauty in that, and danger in that I think.  It helps you get where you’re going but it also sets the stage for bitter disappointments when things don’t (or simply cannot) go your way.

When I got to college, I gained some weight like a lot of girls do.  I think it’s a mixture of the late nights, less-than-stellar nutrition, and the drinking that does it.  Regardless, I ended up about 25 pounds heaver than I ever was before.  I’m including some old pictures here so you can see what I mean! Of course that isn’t a lot of weight to gain, but for somebody who was already comparing herself to others, it sure felt like a lot.  At that point, I became totally fixated on diet culture, cutting things out of my diet, and trying any “quick fix” to drop my extra weight.  If I saw a magazine on a news stand promising to help me “Cut 10 Pounds Fast!” or promote “The Secret Superfood That Will Flatten Your Tummy!” I would buy it in a heartbeat.  I became an encylopedia on all things weight loss.  I would think about and plan what my next meal would be, what the “smartest” way was to eat or drink to achieve my body goals– and almost nothing about my desires or happiness when it came to food.  As a result, I was obsessed with food! Food was on my mind from morning to night.  Depriving myself just made things worse.  If I was craving dessert, I would cave and eat two desserts instead of a few bites of one to satisfy the craving.  If I was hungover, I would “slip up” and eat a burger and fries and hate myself for the rest of the weekend.  I remember going “carbless” (remember the Atkins Diet?) for six days, and then eating a sandwich and literally crying because I was so disappointed in myself for “ruining” all the “hard work” I had put in.  It was an extremely toxic mindset, and the worst part was that it was robbing me of the joys of food and of health! Here I was, a perfectly physically healthy young woman who was so caught up in a vicious mental game with myself that I was barely living life to the fullest! I was traveling the world, having once-in-a-lifetime experiences, and sitting there through all of it torturing myself on the inside.  Talk about a waste!

C. 2007 in the mountains of Africa
c. 2008 visiting Paris
At a promotional photoshoot in 2009

I managed to un-clutch a bit after college, but my unhealthy relationship with picking myself apart physically continued.  In my mind, I could always look better.  Luckily, I was always using methods to achieve my goals that were technically “safe” for my body, but were they safe for myself as a happy woman in the world? Definitely not.  What was even worse was that it felt so normal to be this way, because everywhere I turned was a culture of women trying to change their bodies and diet their way to perfection just like me. I felt normal in this constant, anxious dance of coming out on top– controlling my body to perfection, and obsessing over “healthy” (read: skinny) food.  I remember one review of a movie I starred in at the time affectionately calling me “Moon-Faced” and I cried for hours.  I remember reading that phrase over and over and looking at my face in the mirror wondering why I hadn’t lost my babyfat yet.  Why couldn’t I focus instead on the fact that a newspaper was positively reviewing a movie I was starring in, after working so hard for so many years for that moment?! When I think back to that time, I wonder how much my physical self-consciousness got in the way of what I was able to accomplish.  I wonder if I had put half as much energy in to something truly productive that I did in to wanting to look physically “perfect”, I would have done some pretty cool things.

Finding a few full-b0dy pictures to show here of myself from that time was nearly impossible.  I’m sure at the time I poured over each one, critiquing myself in my head until I finally ended up deleting them.  I hated my large breasts (“They make me look bigger than I am!”), my arms (“My biggest problem area!”) my acne prone skin (“Disgusting!”) and my abs that were flat, but never defined no matter how hard I worked at them (“So unfair!”).  I had absolutely zero respect for my body, for all that it had accomplished, and for all that it was accomplishing every moment of every day just carrying me around where I wanted to go and pumping oxygenated blood through my cells.  I really needed a complete mental shift.  Luckily, becoming pregnant with my daughter did that for me.  The road to become pregnant wasn’t the easiest for us– by the time I was carrying my child in my body, the ups and downs emotionally were definitely there, but so was a certain awe.  It felt really good to feel like my body was purposefully creating something, and that what I was putting in to it was building my daughter cell by cell.  For the first time in years, I allowed myself to give in to cravings, to enjoy the food I was eating, and to eat when I was hungry instead of according to a certain plan.  And what happened? I stopped thinking about food all the time! Instead of craving things constantly, I ate the fries if I wanted the fries and then didn’t eat them for maybe two or three weeks after that.  My whole being felt lighter, I was happier, and I felt more pleasure from food than I had in years.  I started realizing that maybe this kind of grace I was giving myself during this magical time in my life could continue on after my daughter was born.  Maybe if I just allowed food to be food, and exercise just exercise– and not a meter of success– then I could shift the focus away from the minutia and enjoy life a bit more.  I began to focus instead on how I could eat and exercise to feel the best, to give myself energy, and to please myself.  If I had a particularly indulgent meal, instead of punishing myself mentally, I would get excited to balance it the next day with really clean eating.  I embraced the Yin and Yang– the ups and downs of a real, imperfect but pleasurable life.

Eva Amurri Martino fills a glass of water at the sink

After Marlowe was born, I had absolutely no time to obsess about my weight or my body.  I was in New Motherhood 101. I had just had a baby, and of course my body didn’t look like I was used to (or how I would have liked it to in a perfect world), but when I felt myself slipping in to derogatory thoughts about myself I would think back to her birth and all my body had done as it had aided me in growing and delivering my beautiful healthy daughter in to the world.  I would hold her tiny fingers in between mine and think, “I BUILT THAT.”  It was a choice every step of the way to redirect negative thoughts, but it was so important to me.  Trying to be more generous with myself in all my flaws is one of my biggest meditations in motherhood thus far, and one I hope to pass on to my daughter throughout her childhood.  During my most recent pregnancy with Major, I focused again on being my healthiest, most vibrant self.  I ate for energy and joy, enjoying things in moderation, and fueling my body to build a baby.  I walked a ton and drank a lot of fluids.  When I would go to my midwife appointments, I stepped on the scale backwards so that I didn’t allow the numbers to speak louder in my mind that how I felt in my own body. I never thought once about the “diet” I would go on after my son was born, in order to get the coveted “post baby body”.  I think that if I had, and if my french fry or doughnut days were technically numbered, that I would have overindulged during my pregnancy and eaten a ton more of those foods to make up for the diet days ahead.  I think that eliminating that pressure from my thought process enabled me to maintain a healthy body image during my pregnancies.

Now, I give in to my food cravings, and enjoy things in moderation.  I choose healthy foods with the understanding that I can and will have a burger if I want to– and order dessert if it looks amazing!  I drink wine because…two kids under three.  LOL.  I drink tons of water.  If I’m feeling a little slacking on the nutrition, I blend myself a healthy smoothie packed with good stuff.  I exercise because it gives me energy and makes me feel strong and capable, not to mention is excellent for my mental well-being.  Breaking a sweat keeps my skin glowing.  Of course I’m not perfect, and some days were and are harder than others to remain body-positive despite the many changes my body has gone through in the past three years (three pregnancies, two births, and two breastfed babies)– but I try to see it as a lifestyle instead of a quick fix.  I have friends who are size 16, friends who are size 0, and everything in between.  I have a size 12 friend who is gorgeous, comfortable in her own body, and truly radiant– and another friend who is also gorgeous, a size 2, and consistently insecure about her size, her shape, and everything else.  She’d be the first to tell you that she feels terrible about herself most days…and if you saw her yourself all YOU would think is “perfection!”  Our minds do a number on us.  Nobody is immune.  What I’ve learned is that feeling good in your own skin, being happy, accepting your physical body, and enjoying the pleasures that life has to offer are what actually create radiance in a person.  Joy is truly the most attractive quality, and it emanates outwards from every part of somebody when it’s present.  I think when push comes to shove, we all really want to be the HAPPY girl.  At least I do.

Here are my tips for discovering your healthiest self, and encouraging body-positivity as a way of life:

Eva Amurri Martino wears a black top and white jeans in front of her Connecticut home

Ditch the scale.

Nobody ever regretted doing this.  I read an interview with Nicole Richie a few years ago in which she declared “Scales are SO eighties!”  LOL! I tend to agree.  Focus instead on how your clothes fit you, how you feel in your body, and your energy levels. A scale can’t tell you much about fitness in the first place, considering the fact that muscle weighs more than fat anyway.

Ditch the “skinny” clothes.

This is the body-shaming equivalent of having an ex-boyfriend in your contacts to call up whenever you have a fight with your husband.  Not healthy, and a pretty bad idea.  It will only make you feel weird and badly about yourself to hang on to clothes “in case you lose the weight”.  Instead, invest in a wardrobe that you feel great in no matter what!  Sell those “skinny” clothes at a consignment shop, and use the money to go out to dinner!

Be honest with yourself about your body type.

Dress to your best assets.  Nobody has a body full of perfect features, not even actresses and models.  I have run in those circles and I will tell you that they hate their bodies just as much as everybody else does– and that there is a whole team of people photo-shopping the images you see.  I actually used to be the LEAST anxious when I had a photo shoot coming up because I knew they’d airbrush and shrink me to perfection.  It’s just the name of the game (unfortunately).  Be honest with yourself about what works for your body, and accentuate the positives! Tailor your clothes to fit you, and remember that there are no style rules.  Wear what makes you feel good about yourself!

Allow for cravings.

If you’ve been thinking about a piece of cake for three days, eat the damn cake! Enjoy every bite, allow it to fill you with joy, and when the experience is over, appreciate it.  Then move on.  Tomorrow is a new day, with new cravings and different experiences.  Find healthy things that you crave, too, and give yourself access to those as well!  If you are obsessed with one vegetable, look up lots of delicious ways to cook it.  Make eating an experience instead of an end result.

Hydrate.

It’s amazing how well your body functions, eliminates toxins, and glows from within when you are very well hydrated.  I like to make spa water at home by cutting up cucumber slices and putting them in a pitcher of water in the fridge, or even adding a drop of peppermint essential oil or lemon essential oil to my reusable bottles of water to entice myself a bit more.  Remember that for every cup of caffeine you drink, you should really be drinking at least TWO cups of water to flush it out and rehydrate! Ditto alcohol.

Exercise as a way of life.

This was perhaps one of the biggest “life changes” I made.  Instead of focusing on specific gym time, I now think of my exercise levels as how I function and exist in the world.  Sure, it’s great to go to a pilates class or run on the treadmill, but have you examined the choices you can make just by getting from point A to point B?  Whenever there is an option (and I’m not pushing my kids in a stroller), I take the stairs.  If I have some time to kill, I walk instead of driving.  If I’m walking with the stroller, I pick up the pace to get my heart revved up a bit for little bursts.  If we are in the pool with the kids, I have Kyle watch them for a few minutes and swim a couple laps.  Just getting my limbs moving, my heart beating, and remembering how lucky I am that my body actually works does wonders for my physical health and my metal well being.

Create strength goals instead of size goals.

Work towards something that can be labeled as an achievement instead of a number on a piece of clothing.  After Marlowe was born, I wanted to increase my upper body strength.  I did push ups every morning until I could do thirty in a row.  It was a simple achievement, but it was fun to work towards something– and my arms got really defined!

Celebrate your most beautiful features.

It’s ok to be proud.  If you love your lips, reward them with a new beautiful lipstick.  Is your cute butt your calling card? Find a sexy pair of underwear and admire yourself in the mirror.  Celebrate the things that make you uniquely beautiful, and never apologize.

Compliment Others.

See a feature on somebody else that is just gorgeous? Say something! Instead of turning it in to an internal comment about yourself and how you look different or worse, kindly laud praise.  If I see somebody with amazing hair in line ahead of me that I envy, I will say “excuse me, you have the most amazing hair!” It makes me feel good to build somebody else up, and you never know how important it might be that day for that person to feel good about themselves.  I always say that if women actually told each other the positive things that they secretly think in their minds about other women’s appearances all day long this world would be a much different place.

Take your vitamins.

This is a no-brainer, but health starts from the inside!  Make sure you are up to date with your doctor’s physicals, and don’t forget ask if you are deficient in anything!  Vitamins are a great way to make sure we are getting the nutrients we need to feel  our best.

Avoid soy.

So.  This one might be controversial, BUT since I have always been allergic to cow dairy, I used to eat a ton of soy.  Especially in college when I was using it in lattes constantly, etc.  Once I cut soy out of my diet I instantly lost ten pounds (actually) and have since learned that it can affect how your body processes hormones.  I avoid soy now, and I don’t give it to my kids, either! Sometimes (every few weeks) we might eat some steamed edamame beans but that’s about the extent of it.  We definitely don’t consume processed soy (aka soy milk). I use coconut, almond, or goat milk.  I have heard that non-GMO soy is better for you than regular, but I still haven’t gone back.

Don’t starve yourself.  Ever.

Stopping eating does not make you lose weight! That is a myth! In fact, when your body goes in to starvation mode, it slows down your metabolism so that your nutrients remain in your body for longer. This actually makes it harder for your body to lose weight.  If you stop eating all together in order to drop a few pounds you will not only be extremely cranky, but also unsuccessful! If you have actual weight loss goals, work with a doctor or nutritionist to create a healthy and successful plan.  Eat smaller, more frequent meals (this will aid your metabolism), and eat clean (whole, unprocessed foods, grilled or steamed, healthy fats, whole grains).  There is no “quick fix” that is sustainable.  Trust me,  I’ve tried them all.  What actually works is consistency, moderation, exercise, and a healthy attitude.

Eva Amurri Martino wears a black top and white jeans in front of her Connecticut home

Do you have a personal body image journey you’d like to share? Please do so in the comments below!

 

Photographs by Stephanie Elliott Photography

 

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55 Comments

  1. Rachel says:

    Once again, such wonderfully written words that are realistic and relatable.
    Your honesty and journey makes it easier to refocus myself and where I want to be
    Thank you

    06.08.17Reply
  2. This was a great post. I can really connect with the part about stressing yourself out so much about dieting and exercise that when you do “slip up” and eat something you think you shouldn’t, the guilt and shame you feel afterwards is overwhelming; and that is definitely not a healthy way to live!

    06.08.17Reply
  3. Sam says:

    This advice is great and comes at a time when I needed to hear it the most! This definitely brightened my day! Thank you!

    06.08.17Reply
  4. Kathleen Morearty says:

    Love this post. Even at 47, I still struggle with feeling good about myself.

    Where did you get that adorable top? It looks so great on you.

    06.08.17Reply
  5. Christie Aleck says:

    I feel like this article was legit written to me! I have struggled with body insecurities for decades. As early as I can remember I’ve been on some sort of “diet”. Now at 31 years old and two little girls later I too have found some sort of balance. I am trying to be kind to my body and promote positive thoughts when it comes to my body especially around my girls! We go to the gym so “I can get big and strong and carry my girls forever”. I LOVE everything you write! So happy I found your IG!

    06.08.17Reply
  6. Martina says:

    A wonderful post. Thank you for sharing your story. I am sure it will inspire others.

    06.08.17Reply
  7. Paige says:

    I love this post and so appreciate your honesty! I have recently gone through a similar shift in perspective on body image and health. Growing up, I always equated “healthy” to “skinny” in my mind. Health is so much more. Like you, I have ditched the scale and choose to listen to my body and focus on becoming stronger and faster through my exercise.

    Are you familiar with the documentary “Embrace?” The director, Taryn Brumfitt, founded the Body Image Movement. She is doing incredible things to promote positive body image around the world – I highly recommend looking into her work!

    06.08.17Reply
  8. Kelly Brown says:

    This post brings up a lot of things that are really true. I’ve lost a few extra pounds over the last several months – something I’ve been wanting to do for 5 years now! – and I have to say making lifestyle choices (instead of quick fixes) and always always always allowing for moderation was the key to not only losing the extra pounds but also remaining happy and satisfied the entire time. I would always let myself have a couple of cheat meals each week or a day each week where I wouldn’t count calories at all. I’d always allow for that glass of wine. Sure, it probably took a bit longer to lose the pounds but I was happy throughout the whole process! I never felt like I was depriving myself because I always had a day or meal on the horizon that would let me indulge and for me that was and is key. The balance also makes it much easier to stay on target on the days you are dieting. In the prior 5 years, diets were either all or nothing for me, and guess what? I was never able to lose those stubborn extra pounds. Making food a friend instead of the enemy really makes all the difference. If you enjoy cooking, cooking is a great way to make food a friend and really acknowledge its importance to you – and so much fun to experiment with healthy substitutions!

    06.08.17Reply
  9. Averill says:

    Great post. You’re so right that so often how we feel about ourselves is totally inconsistent with who we actually are. (I think we all have friends who are GORGEOUS who think they’re too fat or too short or too…whatever!)

    When I quit rowing crew after my freshman year of college I put on about 30 lbs — not a crisis on a 6′ frame, but definitely destructive to my self image, especially since I’ve always felt “big” — but ain’t no way a 6′ girl with broad shoulders and big boobs is ever gonna pass for petite! In retrospect, the bigger crisis was that I quit working out — and my mental state suffered quite a bit as a result. I too was very judicious in what photos I kept (thank God FB was in its infancy, I would’ve had a panic attack if I’d had to deal with all the social media posting/tagging at that age!)

    Nearly 15 years and 2 kiddos later, I’m finally back to working out consistently. While I’ve never quite made it back to my “fighting” weight, I have managed to “hold the line,” even through 2 pregnancies. And I’m proud of that. Most importantly though, I’ve embraced my size as a gift. I feel like I finally have the mental strength to match my physical.

    PS – I remember you in Californication. You were gorgeous then and you’re gorgeous now.

    06.08.17Reply
  10. Emily says:

    Love this! It all sounds so familiar. So much wasted time worrying about my weight and size! My whole outlook changed after having kids too but this is a great reminder. Having a daughter especially made me want to set a good example. I always want her to feel comfortable in her skin and to know it’s not about being skinny but healthy. Its amazing how many little girls her age (8) already worry about their weight. It’s so sad!

    06.08.17Reply
  11. Lindsey says:

    I wanted to thank you. Thank you for writing this. I needed to read every word. I identify with your “health journey”. I have always picked myself apart, demeaned myself, to the point of self-paralyzation.
    There have been short moments of healthy eating/emotional habits, but not enough.
    For the past 6 years I have been trying to have a baby. My husband and I, have been through everything under the sun. I have done shots, surgery, meds, steroids, hormones…. and no baby. Not only has the heartbreak of having no baby brought me to very low points, but the way my body looks- because of all i have had to do. My body is not my body for many reasons. I try so hard to eat so healthy, workout, and nothing. My Drs tell me this is common. It’s all the hormones. And I know that, yet I can’t seem to remember that. Instead of always picking myself apart, I need to remember how brave I am. Remember, all I have done, sacrificed, and will happily do Anything to be a mother.
    I could go on and on… but I wanted to thank you, for the reminder. I needed this.
    Xox Lindsey

    06.08.17Reply
    • Alex says:

      Sending big hugs to you Lindsey!! What physical and mental pressure you must be under; no wonder you’re feeling a little detached from your body. Wishing you all the luck with this journey and I hope you get that happiness you deserve!!

      06.09.17Reply
  12. Hatley Talbot says:

    Thank you so much for this post. I’ve sat here crying reading to it, as can relate to it so much. When I was a teenager I was a chubby teenager and was bullied for 4 years ( no1 will be your friend bcos you’re fat, why don’t you go away you’re fat) which lead to a couple of years of me doing stupid diets which during that time my skin was terrible, I had no confidence, my parents divorced and I went to live with my father due to not a good relationship with mother. My dad turned round and said I’m chucking your scales out they are the work of the devil, you’re beautiful inside and out and need to realise it. Slowly and surely I managed to maintain a healthier relationship with food. Then in 2012 my beloved father passed away vv suddenly aged 60 and I found myself comfort eating and starting to hate myself again. With the help of my amazing partner Nathan I have away good relationship with food, realising what I put in my body will.also determine the way I feel. But if I want that slice of cheesecake I will.bloody well have it….. or glass of wine or 2 I will also have them. I will just run more the next day. I find running helps me feel good especially my brain. Your videos/posts have also helped me through some really hard times in my life from the bottom of my heart I thank you. Xx

    06.08.17Reply
  13. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! We live in a world of female comparison and judgement and it is so wonderful to hear your journey. I think we all deal with body image issues and when someone who has as beautiful of a body as yours comes it and talks of your struggles, I think it helps to bring us all down to earth and make us feel normal. You’re Journey is beautiful and I am so grateful you shared it.

    06.08.17Reply
  14. Jessica says:

    Thank you so much for this post. I had a c-section 2 months ago and, after dropping a lot of fluid weight, gained back a few pounds due to stress eating from sleep deprivation. I started weighing myself, tracking my food, and felt miserable. I found myself eating by reacting to restriction instead of thinking about what would really satisfy me. Today, I realized that I ate much more healthfully and moderately in the weeks after delivery, when I decided I wasn’t going to weigh myself and create more pressure. Your post was the sign I needed to confirm that my thinking is back on track. Thanks again for being so open and honest with your readers.

    06.08.17Reply
  15. Sophie says:

    Great post! You always seem to put into words so gracefully what I want to say but don’t know how. I often look around at my barre class and see these flat abs on these women and get down on myself. But then I remind myself that I have 3 c sections with very large babies and my belly will never be flat or defined again but that is alright because I have beautiful and healthy children that my body made and for that I am forever grateful. Just being yourself and not comparing to others makes you feel so much better. Thanks again

    06.08.17Reply
  16. Jill says:

    This is beautiful and exactly what I want to instill in my 12 yr old. She looks in the mirror and says ” I look so cute today!” And I love it. I was raised by an overweight mom who told me I had to be underweight because i would gain when I got older like her. Ugh!!! Worst message ever. I realized that she was constantly on diets and alway overweight. When I was about 22 I made exercise a priority, she never worked out only dieted. I used to run and now I power walk and do barre classes like ballet beautiful streaming online classes. I eat and drink like a normal person and I am 47 and still weigh what I weighed in high school, 112 lbs at 5 feet. I know my body type and I appreciate it. I never say diet to my daughter i talk about health. My husband watches his weight but I think we need to get rid of our scale. Thanks!!!

    06.08.17Reply
  17. So well written. You should be proud of yourself for being so honest!

    06.08.17Reply
  18. Donna says:

    Great post! Thank you for sharing, a lot of great tips 💕

    06.08.17Reply
  19. Alicia says:

    Thanks for sharing your story. Im 47 and need to lose 40 lbs and I obsess about it everyday. I’ve been overweight since my 30’s and I’m just tired of worrying about it. I suppose one of these days I’ll pick up those kettle bells and put down the chocolate lol

    06.08.17Reply
    • GRACE says:

      I think it’s so important to find an exercise you enjoy. I find gyms and weight lifting SUCH a bore and always lacked the motivation. After I broke my wrist my physiotherapist did volleyball with me and I loved it. My husband and I regularly pop out to throw a frisbee or a ball around and we try to challenge each other to catch different throws. There are so many sports out there: rock climbing, bowling, hiking even that can be much more fun than lifting weights!

      06.08.17Reply
    • GRACE says:

      and you don’t have to put down the chocolate! I don’t drink so I have fancy chocolates after a hard day and the richer they are the less you want.

      06.08.17Reply
  20. Maia says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and for your helpful tips. This really resonated with me and it’s exactly what I needed to read today. Bookmarking this post so I can keep reminding myself to stay body positive! 🙂

    06.08.17Reply
  21. Caitlin says:

    Great post! Do you give your kids almond milk too? Do you drink coffee every morning? If so, what goes in it? Thanks!

    06.08.17Reply
  22. M says:

    I thought your blog was very well written and I think an overall positive message. Thank you for sharing your journey. I love reading about other people’s journeys to self love and acceptance.

    I, too have been in the entertainment industry and it’s very hard to avoid feeling body image obsessed when it’s constantly being brought up or factored into whether you are hired or not. I have never fallen into any feelings of needing to be anything other than myself though. I’m raising a daughter and I think it’s so important that we teach our children that our bodies aren’t objects to be sexualized. They provide a vessel for our souls and our valuable minds. People with disabilities should be viewed just as beautiful and valuable.We don;t all have to be thin models. Little girls are constantly told how pretty they are. Young boys are more likely to be told they are smart, athletic and successful. We need to look at the messages we send to our children from early on. It starts by how we treat ourselves, talk about ourselves and talk about others.

    I do have to say from being a reader I sometimes get a different perspective from what you say you are putting out. Am I misreading it all, or am I just smart enough to see past the projection? Who knows really because you are not a close friend or someone I even know socially. I don’t see all your quirks and behaviour behind the camera/phone. Maybe it was good you wrote this because if it’s really true, it’s very different than the opinion I had formed Social media is bad for that. You have talked about what I would consider to be very image based behaviour. I had formed an opinion as a reader that you enjoy being very thin and want to look good for your husband and the blog. You have written about other things that lead me to believe (as you admitted) you are very type A and want everything a certain way. Including your body. I felt that was one of your top priorities…being thin. Of course, this is just what I had deduced from what you put out there. You take a lot of beauty selfies and pucker constantly for the camera. You seem really into yourself. Which is totally fine, but I can’t really 100% believe this blog post because of that. We do see you a lot in your fresh faced morning mode too (which is just as beautiful) and you do show the shit awful times too. This is why I enjoy being a reader. I definitely feel a huge focus of your platform is on you wanting to look good though. It’s your brand. I do think your followers probably want that. You know that. You know you are selling a thin, pretty well styled life. I doubt you would have people following and asking you for tips if you were bigger, had no make-up on and had a sloppy house! That’s totally ok. You are selling a brand. Own it. I still read and find you very fun to follow because I take it for what it is. Entertainment. You are very engaging, fun, talented and have great style. I can relate on certain levels, so I keep reading.

    So, I guess I just don’t believe that food and being thin isn’t such a focus still. That’s ok. You know how you feel and what your truth is. I just feel having an open discussion and having people give their honest opinions can be helpful too.

    Thanks for sharing. (excuse any typos!)

    06.08.17Reply
    • Michelle says:

      I agree 100% with what you wrote. If the IG/blog weren’t so curated (and professionally photographed), I’d have a different view. It just doesn’t feel…honest.

      06.08.17Reply
      • M says:

        I’m not saying that Eva isn’t being honest. These could be 100% true feelings. I think her writing is fantastic and I definitely think she touched on some really sincere stuff. I’m not wanting to prove innocence or discredit Eva at all. I enjoy this blog and think that Eva is doing a great job of branding herself. I once wrote a comment how she shouldn’t apologize for it either. Never! This is a business and I think there is room for everyone. As I stated, I’m just posting how I perceive this post based on my following of this blog. I do find sometimes Eva misses the mark with relatability and that’s ok. A lot of her readers probably look-up to Eva and that probably works in her favour! She has a celebrity Mom and she herself was an actress. People are curious to look into her life. People probably wouldn’t be as curious to look into mine, even if it is fabulous! Right? 😉 That’s why this works for her. I love to just take it all with a grain of salt and be entertained by her daily goings on and gorgeous kiddos! For me it stops there. I don’t love the constant ‘working Mom’ references or how tired she was even when she had a night nurse. Not because of being envious (because I can do those things too and have been criticized as well). It’s because I feel bad sometimes watching her try to relate to people who don’t understand why they can’t be like her . I think that’s when things take a slightly disingenuous turn on here. Other than that I enjoy watching her business grow and only wish her the best.

        06.08.17Reply
        • M says:

          Ok, so here is an example. Gee I’m really giving this a lot of time today 😛

          You went to Disneyland. You had a guide. I could see the guide. Others might not understand who that was. We have had one before too. Honestly, there is world of difference going to Disneyland with one. It’s amazing. If someone went for a day and without a guide They might ride three or four rides with the insane line-ups. Their experience would be far less relaxing and fun than yours. Your readers might wonder why you look like you are having so much fun, versus being grumpy and tired from standing in lines all day! You are setting them up for a bit of a disappointment. They also would be thinking the average person would ride every ride they want in one day. Not so!

          Also, the minimum charge for a guide is something like $500.00/hr and with 6 hour minimum. That’s a hefty price tag for most people.

          I guess my point is, you are sharing with everyone going there. You are documenting it on insta story. So it feels very intimate. However, you didn’t share any of that with your readers. The perks of having a guide. So, to me that’s where things go a little sideways for me. Probably your average reader doesn’t even think of that. They honestly think you just showed up and had fun! Maybe I know too much 😉

          06.08.17Reply
          • Peggy says:

            She shared her tips for Disneyland (including the guide) on her newsletter.

            06.09.17
      • M says:

        Oh, thanks for letting me know Peggy. I don’t get the newsletter (don’t love them). I just follow Instagram and look-in on the posts on the website. I never saw a mention of the guide on those. I’m happy to hear she shared that with people about the guide. It is a wonderful way to do Disneyland. We now feel spoiled and probably couldn’t go any other way. Why doesn’t she share that on the other platforms I wonder?

        06.10.17Reply
  23. Sarah Brittingham says:

    I never comment,but your article on discovering my healthiest self was very profound. It spoke to me on many levels. I find myself asking why can’t I like “me”? This makes me see that everyone has insecurities and I’m not alone. I think this article is the little nudge I need.

    Many Thanks, Sarah

    06.08.17Reply
  24. Breeana says:

    Very well said! In the last four years I have had two kids 14 months apart, and breast fed for 3.5 years straight so I’ve spent the last year finding what works for me to help me feel good about myself and celebrate my body. So many of your points resonate with what seems to be a healthy route for me. Thanks for your story 🌈

    06.08.17Reply
  25. Reece says:

    Saying your acne prone skin is disgusting could offend others.

    06.08.17Reply
    • Michelle says:

      She said SHE felt it was “disgusting”. And she has every right to feel how she feels. We are so worried in this country that anything and everything we say will “offend”. It’s bullsh*t and it masks over the truth of our emotions — which is one of the worst offenses we could commit against ourselves.

      06.08.17Reply
      • Reece says:

        Oh stop, get a life! 😂

        06.09.17Reply
        • Michelle says:

          Was your original post a joke?

          06.09.17Reply
  26. Sofi says:

    So well put. Really needed this today. Thank you Eva ❤️

    06.08.17Reply
  27. Colleen says:

    I am currently suffering with an eating disorder and this is exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you for inspiring me to not look at myself so critically and love who I am. Thank you so much Eva.

    06.08.17Reply
  28. Jaimee says:

    This is so beautiful, thank you for sharing! I’ve recently started my journey with intuitive eating, and not thinking about food every minute of every day is the most freeing thing. It has been quite eye opening to see how much more fully engaged I am in my own life now and just how bombarded we, as a society, are with the notion that we’re doing it wrong if we aren’t on a diet train.
    I highly recommend the Nutrition Matters podcast from Paige Smathers. She speaks so directly to this approach!

    06.08.17Reply
  29. Olivia says:

    Highly recommend Nutpods for us non-dairy drinkers!

    06.08.17Reply
  30. Elaine Dempsey says:

    I love how honesty you are in what you say as a mom of 3 now teenagers I have struggled with all of these issues and I still need to remind myself all the time how amazing us moms are.. thank you for sharing what is so very private ❤️

    06.08.17Reply
  31. Lisa says:

    Wow! What an awesome story. Thank you for sharing your journey. This couldn’t have been read at a better time. Really helped me look at my body imagine a different way.

    06.08.17Reply
  32. Lydia says:

    Thank you for this post! It is not about being skinny, but being healthy! Don’t deprive yourself of sweet treats every now and then either 🙂 Water is key.

    06.09.17Reply
  33. JENNIFER says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! I always take so much away from your posts, little tips and motivation to help me find my better self.
    Thank you!

    06.09.17Reply
  34. Julie Augostino says:

    Hi Eva-HUGE fan of yours and that beautiful family! Your instagram posts make my day and I applaud your ongoing journey.

    I have had and I think always will have body issues. But keeping them at bay as it were, can be so difficult. Even at age 50 and a weight loss of 110 lbs, is full of struggles and difficulties. My belly will always sag and be loose because of the damage I did to the skin. It will never retract because of the lost elasticity. I am trying so hard to accept my “flub” as it were, and some days are better than others. But I am healthier than I’ve ever been, it doesn’t hurt as much to move and I love the feeling of kids arms FULLY around my waist. Blessings, true blessings.

    Thanks for the wisdom and the humor. God bless.

    Julie A.

    06.09.17Reply
  35. Katie O'Callaghan says:

    I look forward to reading your newsletter every week! Thank you for sharing!

    06.09.17Reply
  36. Stephanie Almhem says:

    This hits home! I have always fluctuated but I was never fat even though I thought I was. I dated someone who told me I was less than perfect and believed him. I was never comfortable in my own skin until after I had my son. Like you I was able to focus on the things my body has done in creating this beautiful child. My husband found me even more attractive even when I couldn’t see it. In December I decided that I needed to do something since dieting alone wasn’t bringing me back to pre baby weight. I started going to the gym, I started running with my jogging stroller, I started walking more and sooner than later I ditched the scale. I just felt so much healthier and felt better in my clothes than I have ever did even when I was skinny. I scaled Mount San Gorgonio which is the highest peak in SoCal. I made it to the summit and I made it back to the car. Now, whats more sexier than a girl climbing a mountain with her husband?

    Overall, diets suck and like you I enjoy things on occasion rather than binge eating. I am just so much happier now that I am a mother and a wife. Thicker than my skinny self but much happier than that skinny girl.

    06.09.17Reply
  37. Alexandra says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I loved how you talked about how being Type A could be a dangerous thing. I have always felt like this. I’m someone who likes control, and I’m currently on a health journey myself. I got on the scale after a 6 week bootcamp and was like, really? That’s all I lost? And my trainer was like but you lost 8 inches. The scale means nothing. (I told you on Instagram but I’ve been eating quite a bit of Buster’s Fish but with cod instead and it is oh so delicious!😉) It’s so unfortunate how we look at ourselves or don’t. So, since I decided to get rid of the scale, I have my mirror of positive post it’s. So, I see them every time I get my gym clothes and get mentally well in the head! Love your honesty, Eva! Thanks for taking us on your refreshingly real journey! ❤️

    06.09.17Reply
  38. Sylvia says:

    Magnificent post! Just want I needed in my life right now! Thank you! 👍👍

    06.10.17Reply
  39. Such an inspiring post Eva,i can relate to all that you said,i always imagined you never had weight problems or skin issues and you were always so confident,i can see myself in you and your struggles and feel better about myself while reading your wonderful words,we all go through our insecurities and its good that with time you were able to come to peace with your mind and body

    06.10.17Reply
  40. Lynn says:

    Such a wonderful, positive approach. Love this!

    06.11.17Reply
  41. Courtney says:

    Beautiful article! You really were so authentic in this piece and touched on so much of what women go through. Your advice is all on point. Thank you for helping raise awareness around living a balanced lifestyle around food and appearance!

    06.15.17Reply
  42. Jillian says:

    I love this! I feel inspired to adjust how I approach my health and how I think about my body. I can relate so much to everything you wrote about constantly picking yourself apart.

    06.15.17Reply
  43. Alexis says:

    This post made me feel so much better! I struggle with my body image daily. Sometimes it consumes me but I’m trying to not be so obsessive! Thank you for always being so real and honest.

    06.21.17Reply
  44. Tricia says:

    Eva,

    This is one of my absolute favorite posts of yours. So often we get into a box of what’s healthy, and we start judging other people based on our own definitions. If only life were so simple. Thank you for being so vulnerable and honest with your story! Getting to know you through your blog has been such a joy!

    Truly,
    Tricia

    06.22.17Reply