A fitness blogger who used to post countless photos of her workouts and bikini shots showing off her abs has banned the snaps from her Instagram to give a more realistic view of her life.
Sophie Gray from Edmonton, Canada has lost Instagram 70,000 followers since changing her account, according to Business Insider, but the blogger admits she’s much happier.
Those images made Sophie Gray feel inadequate,’ she explained. ‘Everything I did revolved around those photos. I was constantly worrying about my body image because my “worth” through this channel depended on it.’
‘I was the one behind the account for three years. I saw what images performed better. I saw what people wanted to see – fitter, thinner, more defined and perfect.’
Sophie admits she used to cry herself to sleep, even though she had defined abs and a thigh gap, because she didn’t believe she was good enough, but now she’s finally realised that self-worth is not based on what you look like.
As well as the impact on her own self-confidence, Sophie wanted to take responsibility for the the effect she might be having on her followers, saying in an interview with Marie Claire: ‘I don’t want to compound anyone’s pain and anxiety with my portrayal of a so-called perfect life or body. I want to be a force for positive change.’
Sophie Gray from Edmonton, Canada now shows off her real life on Instagram, rather than ‘perfect’ snaps flaunting her abs in a bikini
The fitness blogger wants people to stop worrying about how they look and what they eat and embrace themselves
Sophie admits that while she was portraying an image of a perfect life on Instagram, the reality was very different.
She recalled suffering a panic attack at the airport and having to drive 38 hours with her boyfriend because she couldn’t get on the plane.
After the incident she came to the conclusion that she would no longer post photos of her bare midriff on social media.
‘I also know what it’s like to feel awful. I know what it’s like to want to so desperately be someone other than yourself. I know what it’s like to look in the mirror and cry.
Sophie used to cry herself to sleep because she believed her body wasn’t good enough, despite having a six pack
‘The abs selfies – and the implicit shaming that came with them – had to stop,’ she said.
Since deciding to show a more ‘vulnerable side’ of her life, she shares make-up free selfies and accounts of difficult times she’s been through to show her followers that nobody is perfect.
And it means that she’s able to enjoy a more balanced lifestyle without feeling guilt or shame.
In a recent Instagram post she explained: ‘Today I had breakfast, went to the farmers market, had chocolate covered almonds, lunch, and this doughnut. I also plan to work out, go to the dog park and have dinner.
According to Business Insider, she’s lost 70,000 followers since embracing a more body positive approach, but Sophie is happier than ever
The blogger still loves fitness and working out, but is no longer obsessed with perfection
To some this may sound like a super average day. And it is – but to me, this is the type of day “the fitness” wayofgray was having me miss out on.
‘For her, there was always a photo shoot coming up. What if those chocolate covered almonds ruined the photos? What if the workout wasn’t tough enough? BREAD?!
‘I understand that wayofgray’s old images may have been inspiring. And, to that I say there are tons of those accounts you can follow for those images. But, I know those images were damaging for many. While I believe we all must take accountability for our experiences, it doesn’t make contributing to others insecurities any easier.
The blogger is determined to spread a message of self-love rather than making her followers feel anxious with images of herself showing off her sculpted abs
Sophie’s change was prompted by an anxiety attack at the airport and she realised she didn’t want to contribute to people’s negative feelings about themselves