Since publishing this Yoga and Pilates before and after blog post… we have something to say.
The ‘before and after photo’ even when it’s done in a healthy way, places all your focus on weight and nothing on overall health and happiness.
It’s saying that ‘thin’ is healthy and beautiful, that ‘skinny’ (or whatever beauty ideal they’re showing in the ‘after’, is the goal). But you simply can not diagnose health from body weight and size.
In the past, we have both been thinner… and at the same time, we’ve also been less happy, with more health issues.
We no longer share before and after images.
We no longer promote MerryBody with Yoga before and after photos.
Also, we’ve realised that we’ve had about 10 ‘before and after’ opportunities… each!
Because life happens… we change, our lifestyles change. Read more on why we strongly dislike and will never post before and after photos again HERE.
This does not mean we are anti-health or anti-weight loss.
It just means we won’t use it as a marketing tool. We won’t share something that emphasises a woman’s worth on her body alone. WE don’t want to add to the trash that is Diet Culture. Ok glad we got that out of the way. We’ve kept the old before and after blogpost because we feel like it’s even more beneficial to show that YES, we can all change.
We want to share our personal transformations with you. We also spoke about our experience on the Get Merry podcast over here.
The before (left) is from early 2016 and after is now, September 2019.
On the left, we had begun our Yoga and Pilates journey, however, we didn’t have a consistent practice and our diets were not as healthy as they are now.
We were also living with very negative and self-destructive mindsets. We were filled with self-doubt, we lacked confidence… we were disconnected from ourselves.
We’re so grateful that we found Yoga and Pilates. These practises completely changed our lives forever.
You see, we’d spent years and years trying all the diets and spending hours in the gym.
But what we realise now is that the real toxicity came from our intentions and mindsets behind these actions.
We continuously yo-yo dieted (since our very early teens) to lose weight because we never thought we were good enough. We worked our butts off in the gym, because we didn’t accept what we saw in the mirror.
The constant thoughts going through our minds were …
… I binged on the weekend so I need to double my workouts this week.
… I am going out drinking with the girls tomorrow night, I’ll make sure I eat super well today and double my cardio and weights so I feel good.
… Ok, so I had 10 almonds, a salad (skipped the dressing), 2 x cans diet coke and chicken and veg (no oil) YES, good job today.
These thoughts completely consumed us.
This obsession with dieting and exercising and the desire to need to lose weight came from a FEAR based mindset, the idea that we were not good enough/pretty enough/thin enough.
So, no matter how much weight we lost, then gained, then lost, then gained… we were never happy, we were never enough.
Thankfully we discovered Yoga and Pilates, which led us to delve deeper into our mindsets and the motivation behind our exercise and diets.
We went deep and we learned a lot and this is what led us to do our teacher trainings and create the MerryBody Online Yoga, Pilates and Meditation Studio.
Through our journey with Yoga, Pilates and Meditation we realised the only thing that truly mattered was how we felt about ourselves right NOW. And not when we lost XX kgs or fitted into that dress.
This was a huge mindset shift.
Not only did it make our exercise and healthy living more sustainable, but it also brought us JOY!
We actually wanted to get on the mat, we wanted to eat healthily.
Instead of exercise being a punshinment it became a way to show respect and even love to ourselves.
And yes, we still do the Yoga and Pilates for the physical benefits. And of course, Yoga and Pilates will strengthen, lengthen and tone your body. You take action… there will be a reaction (it’s physics!).
But we also move this way because it feels GOOD (before we do it, when we’re doing it and after we’ve done it!).
We also move this way to save us from future pain, injury and health bills later in life.
We do this NOW… so our future selves say thank you.
And the real true magic happens when you create a healthy, positive intention behind your movement.
This is why MerryBody is movement driven by self-acceptance, self-respect and joy.
Yes, we lost weight, toned, leaned out.
But the real magic from a consistent Yoga and Pilates practice are all the other things that come with it…
– We move our bodies because we respect them and actually want to care for ourselves and show love to ourselves.
– We feel a sense of ease. Less stiffness and tightness in the body.
– Our posture is better! Check out that bottom photo!
– We breathe deeper, we are calmer.
– When we look in the mirror we actually LOVE what we see… this is a complete 180 from how we used to feel. We used to look in the mirror and the first thing we’d both think or even say is “I’m so fat”. This change was not from losing weight but from our mindset shift. We know this because we’ve both been thinner in the past and not happy or confident (because we still had the self-destructive mindset).
– We don’t cover up in baggy jumpers. This isn’t just because we lost weight, it’s because we feel more connected to ourselves, more confident to be who we are! We accept ourselves just as we are.
– We both lost weight, about 8kg each. AND KEPT IT OFF! We don’t weigh ourselves, except when we visit our doctor every 3-6 months. Throwing out the scales was also a great idea.
All this change happened within 3 years. All this change happened because we started Yoga and Pilates. We fell in love with this way of movement, it’s fun! It’s dynamic! It’s safe! And it feels damn good.
We know most women wish to welcome in some kind of transformation. In fact, when we surveyed 700 Aussie women, 99% said they want to change something about their bodies. Yes, this made us sad but it also made us realise how much we needed to share what we had found!
We found a way to create transformation not just in the body but in the mind and the heart too (this is the real magic we were talking about).
Maybe you’re one of the 99% who wants to change something about your body? And hey, change is ok, change is the only constant we have in our lives.
But rather than creating the change through punishment… let’s do it through love. Let’s do it in a FUN way. Let’s actually ENJOY the process and the journey.
The sooner you start, the quicker it will happen. We’ve all had those moments where we’ve said: “I wish I’d started XX months/weeks/years ago.” Maybe NOW is the time. This is your moment.
The best part is that we run member exclusive 21 Day Challenges every 2 months and the next one starts on Monday 23 September.
This time around the theme is BODY CONFIDENCE.
Get ready for daily Yoga and Pilates classes, motivation and accountability. This is when consistency and transformation happens. Transformation for your mind, body and heart.
Emma + Carla
P.s Check out the below posture transformation! We’re so grateful for Yoga and Pilates and we’re so excited to share everything we know with you.
Pp.s if you have any questions, let us know. Head to THIS PAGE and you can chat to us, just click the message symbol.