By Amber Rogers – This picture is an accurate representation of what I look like today. Most people would say I look fit. Only the most extreme would say I am fat. I am regularly referred to as ‘lean’ and ‘thin’.

And yet. I weigh 170 pounds, which puts me just into the ‘overweight’ category on the BMI charts according to my height (5’9). Today I am wearing a pair of jeans that is a size 14W – which means I found them in the plus size department (I also have clothes in my closet in sizes 4-12, that all fit. I most often wear clothes labeled between 8 and 12).

It is time for a new paradigm. Our worth as women (and men) is not determined by our weight, or our clothing size, or any other arbitrary number assigned to us. Not even how much we can deadlift.

“I believe health comes in many shapes and sizes, and that health starts with mindset – and that self-compassion (as well as compassion for others) is the healthiest mindset of all.”

This picture of me does not tell you how happy I am. It does not tell you how much value I bring to the lives of others. It does not tell you how many people love me. It does not signify that I am better or worse than anyone else. It does not convey the works I create in this world.

Being fit is awesome, because it keeps me healthy and strong so I can go out in the world and do awesome things. Being fit, itself, is not the goal. Being fit is a means to accomplish my true goals. If your goal ends at ‘being fit’, think bigger! The world has so much more for you!

About The Author

In 2008, after 35 years of the Standard American Diet, a sedentary lifestyle, and two pregnancies, I found myself obese, exhibiting a whole laundry list of Metabolic Disorder symptoms, and hurtling madly down a path toward chronic illness and an early, preventable death.

Realizing that I was my daughters’ primary female role model, I decided to clean up my act and model a healthy lifestyle, in the hopes that they’d be spared the future of obesity and illness that was my reality. With the simple act of trying to set a good example though, something amazing and unexpected happened. I healed myself and profoundly changed my body.

Today, I’m a 40-year-old mom who reversed obesity and polycystic ovary syndrome with exercise and better food choices. I am a Personal Trainer and Weight Management Coach, as well as a Certified Massage Therapist specializing in Sports Massage. I practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. Go Kaleo is my personal blog.