Source: get-thinspiration.tumblr.com via Steevy on Pinterest

I love Pinterest as much as the next girl, but lately I’ve been bothered by the increased presence of “thinspiration” boards. I know this is nothing new to the internet, there are pro-eating disorder websites that promote awful messages and share “inspiring” images like this all the time. But seeing them appear on my beloved Pinterest has not only irked me but has also broken my heart. So many women long to look like images from a magazine (and I call them images because they are just that, they are not real bodies). It breaks my heart to watch women pin & caption images that they believe will help them change.

As a fitness professional and a believer in healthy body images, I know it’s a fine line to walk. I walk this line everyday. There are some very inspirational sayings and images on Pinterest that empower women to be strong and healthy, but some of them go beyond what I consider to be healthy.

You know that here on The Balanced Life I am all about inspiring women to get healthy for the RIGHT reasons. Many of my clients and readers need and want to lose weight. That is okay. But you will never see me encouraging women to post pictures of their dream body as motivation. You will never see me use guilt as a motivator. True motivation and change must come from within. For change to occur, decisions must come from a place of self-care, not of hate. Using images like this causes you to hate your own body. Hating your body makes your body the enemy and that will always work against you in the end. That’s why images like this are such a problem to me. Constantly comparing yourself to others and striving for perfection is not only destructive, it doesn’t work.

If it were up to me, I’d love to see a lot more images like this:

And a lot less like this:

Source: finallygettingfit-noexcuses.tumblr.com via Karlee on Pinterest

Also, be aware that when you “re-pin” a pin, you may be promoting a pro-eating disorder website. Think twice and check the sources of your “fitness motivation” boards.

What do you think? Will you join me in pinning the positive and ditching the negative?