For generations, women have felt immense pressure to be thin. We have felt inadequate as we compare our bodies to those of the women displayed in magazines, on TV, and on the runway. We are lead to believe that we are not beautiful if we cannot attain the unrealistic figures of the rail thin women who smile at us from their glossy displays. Despite the fact that we may realize what we desire is the product of genetics, photo shop, or could perhaps even be a completely fabricated digital woman who doesn’t even exist, we still continue to beat ourselves up, convincing ourselves that the way our bodies look is not good enough to be considered beautiful.

I’m here to refute that fact, and to provide a few quick examples of why Spartan women are incredibly beautiful, sexy, and just perfect the way we are. Ladies, it’s time to look in the mirror and remember why being a Spartan is so much better than simply being skinny.

 1) Spartan women are confident! Instead of whimpering as we look in the mirror, wishing we could squeeze into that size 0 skinny jean, we love our curves, our muscles, and how our athletic wear hugs the amazing body we’ve worked so hard to achieve! Spartan women are not cookie cutter, and we accept the fact that we all vary greatly in size, shape, height, and build. Many of us are actively working toward losing a few pounds, but what separates us is the fact that, for a Spartan, it’s not all about the weight loss, but instead it’s about getting healthy, feeling great, and being strong. A Spartan woman does not base her self-worth on what clothing size she wears, but instead takes stock in the fact that she works hard to be healthy for herself and her family, and her lifestyle reflects that.

2) Spartan women eat! As lovely as a 700 calorie diet based around food avoidance (all while obsessing about it!), unrealistic restrictions, and the insatiable grumble of a stomach confused as to why you are neglecting it, a Spartan woman knows she must eat to sustain herself.  To become strong, we must eat healthy, nutritious foods which are full of nutrients to provide ourselves with the energy to properly train.  We work hard, and we eat well! We don’t diet, but instead we commit ourselves to providing our bodies with what they need to perform their best. We don’t starve ourselves as though punishing our bodies for having curves; we nourish them so as to provide them with the best opportunity to be healthy and well.

3) Spartan women are strong! In a world where women have always been called “the weaker sex”, Spartan women are determined to prove that this is not the case! We flip tires, climb ropes, and scale walls. We lift weights, we practice our burpees, and we rejoice as we gain the strength to complete a push-up or pull-up.  We get up early to train, and we love sharing our progress with other women committed to the same journey. While few of us will ever earn a podium victory, we each tackle our races with a fire in our hearts, and the resolve to continue through to the bitter end.  We continually strive for growth and improvement, and we never give up.

4) Spartan women are fun! Who doesn’t love a carefree woman who enjoys challenging herself, and who doesn’t worry about breaking a nail, scraping her knee, or getting dirty? Spartan women are confident without makeup, and we show off our bruises as though they are badges of honor. We don’t mind being covered in mud from head to toe, and this laid back attitude makes us incredibly fun to be around. We don’t sweat the small stuff, we roll with the punches, and we are all about getting fresh air and living life to the fullest!

5) Spartan women support each other! While many women striving simply to be thin seem to endure their plight solo, bogged down by their jealousy of others while engulfed in their own self-conscious battle, Spartan women band together to support and encourage each other. We cheer each other on, provide advice when called upon, and never let each other give up.  We are a family of women committed to improving ourselves as individuals, and we do this by being there for each other as we each continue on our own personal journey. Spartan women cover the globe, yet we are not strangers to one another, we are connected by a beautiful passion for living life to the fullest, and we accept all members of the Spartan family as our sisters.

So to all of the gorgeous, strong, amazing Spartan women out in the world today, keep training hard and remember to love your body for what it is!  While the desire to be thin may always gnaw at the back of your mind, remember that a woman who starves herself to be skinny would never have the strength to climb an 8 foot wall, nor have the ability to lift a heavy atlas ball, much less survive miles of ruthless Spartan terrain. Be strong, be confident, and love the fact that the body you are building to be better and stronger is uniquely yours.

Spartan is the new skinny ladies!

Let’s share this message and continue to build this beautiful sisterhood that is Spartan Chicked.  AROO!

Holly Joy Berkey

www.muddymommy.com

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by Carrie Adams

Since the dawn of time, there has been disparity between the sexes.  Women, perceived as the weaker sex, have waited patiently.  We wait no more.

A Brief History of Time

K. Switzer

776 B.C. – The first Olympics are held in ancient Greece. Women are excluded.

(Lots of stuff happens here)

1967 -K. (Katherine) Switzer registers to run the Boston Marathon. Race officials try to tear her number from her back during the race.

1972 – Congress passes Title IXBOOM.

1973Billie Jean King wins the “battle-of-the-sexes” tennis match against Bobby Riggs on Sept. 20 in Houston in front of more than 30,000 people and a world-wide TV audience of more than 50 million people.

2000 -Fabiola Da Silva’s scorching athleticism leads to the introduction of the “Fabiola Rule,” which allows women to qualify into the men’s vert finals of competitions of the X-Games. Since then, Fabiola has placed several times in the men’s Top 10 and she was the only girl competing against a field of male inline skaters at the 2004 X Games.

2004Michelle Wie becomes the youngest person and the fourth-ever female to play in a PGA tour event when she tees off at the Sony Open.

Michaela Hutchison

2006 – In Anchorage, Alaska Michaela Hutchison becomes the first girl in the nation to win a state high school wrestling title while competing against boys.

2011 – This morning– I passed four dudes on the trail during my little training run.

Okay, so the last one isn’t compelling, but it made me smile when it happened (four times, actually, and they were the only other people on the trail.)

The point is, women are making advances in all sports and we are gaining ground on our male counterparts.  “Getting chicked” is what happens when a man is passed, beaten, bested, or out-done by a woman.  And though it’s becoming a more frequent phenomenon every day,  men almost universally are not entirely okay with it.

Most of my male friends acknowledge their aversion to being bested by women.  I’m no Paula Radcliffe, but in my circle of running buddies, I’m no slouch either.  I can throw down some good times and on a pretty consistent basis.  I’ve been challenged to races more times than I can count by those who didn’t know better, those who thought they knew better, and those who had been drinking heavily.  In the sake of transparency, I haven’t always won those bets (yes, I generally take them), but on the trail and on the road, I can hold my own.

Chrissie Wellington

Regardless, whenever I roll up on a guy in an event or even on a gym track, I get the same reaction: deer-in-the-headlights eyes, the sudden onset of panic/embarrassment/fear, and an overly exaggerated effort to not let me pass them.  When I do, when they forfeit, it’s a small victory for me and a huge shot to the ego for them.

But let’s get real for a hot second.  I’m just a blip on the radar screen.  Take Chrissie Wellington for example, the phenom Ironman athlete.  She has rarely been outside the top 10 overall in her races – 7th in Roth, 7th in Korea, 8th in Arizona.  Her marathon times in some of her wins have been beaten by only a few men in those races.  Only at Kona does she find herself outside the top 10 (22nd in 2009, for example.)

Pam Reed

Or what about  Pam Reed, the ultra-distance runner who in 2002 was the first woman to become the overall winner of the Badwater Ultramarathon?  That’s a nasty little 135-mile ultra that has crazy elevation and heat indexes well above 120 degrees.  She subsequently repeated her feat as overall winner of the race in 2003. In 2002, her win also set the women’s course record.  In 2005, Reed became the first person (not woman, but PERSON) to complete a 300-mile run without sleep.  It took less than 80 hours.  And NO, that’s not a typo.  300 miles… in 80 hours… without sleep.

The moral of the story is simple.  Guys, the ladies are showing up.  Day in and day out, in all sports, niches, and events, we’re here.   Ask anyone who’s squared off against Sonya Thomas, the 98-pound professional eater who goes by the moniker “Black Widow” and is currently ranked as the fifth-best competitive eater in the United States and sixth in the world, with 29 world titles.

The ladies are kicking ass, and we aren’t going anywhere.  So when you hear the tell-tale sound of approaching footsteps behind you, it could very well be a woman about to smoke you.  Don’t fight it.  As she leaves you in her wake with what you’ll tell your friends later was superhuman steroid-fueled ease, give her respect (even if it’s only in your head.)  You and I both know that getting “chicked” may be the best thing to happen to you all day.

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