• Shelby Schmidt

Like Quick Sand...The Diet Culture Trap

We’ve all been there—-feeling and thinking like we either aren’t eating how we should be, working out as much as we should or that we need to push harder or we won’t progress. In short—We've all been there and have allowed ourselves to buy into diet culture.

I’m going on the record here and taking the stance that I am insanely ANTI DIET CULTURE. As a women I know first hand what this does to young impressionable girls as well as grown ass women who are just trying our best to keep our heads above water between family, kids, work and whatever else is on your individual plate any given day. Life is hard enough without fitspo influencers telling you “YOU CAN DO IT TOO....if you do this exact program like I did and drink this shake ”. I for one am tired of seeing the canned line of “push past your excuses” . While yes we all are guilty of making excuses sometimes no one should be shamed into workouts, healthy eating or losing weight.



These programs preach “acceptance” while in the next sentence basically “If this person over here can do it then what’s your excuse?” This is a perfect example of putting women especially against each other and shaming anyone who has the audacity to be tired.

Now let me be clear—not everyone who promotes these programs are like that but from my experiences and interactions 98% push this horrible narrative. I have the 2% that I respect and are actually doing it correctly and healthy but I’m horrified that it’s such a small percentage. I support others trying to help others and make a living for their family but I don’t support using a damaging script to do it.



If you're going to preach that you are there for your "tribe" and that you "just want people to feel their best" Don't put these buzz word phrases out there that are a low key slams to anyone that doesn't buy into every single word that you put out there. We all already have damaging thoughts and doubts rolling around in our head without ANOTHER person reminding us all the time of what we "should" be doing.


Even though I am anti diet culture I even get sucked into the black hole and let the false and counterproductive crap get into my head.

If you’ve read my overtraining post you know I had to take a step back from training and just recover, recover, recover lately. I have been doing well overall but some days are easier than others (same as running). But I was looking forward to being more on my regular routine and getting back into a even stride. (Puns are my lifeeee). But as life happens the world laughed at my plans and said "Hold my beer".



I decided to play soccer with my little one, got to into my moves and tweaked my back kicking the ball. (I am no Alex Morgan) I can run a half marathon but my body kicking a soccer ball is like nahhh not our jam lets cramp up!!! So instead of running my solo miles like I planned I am writing this while sitting on a heating pad. Motivating, right??

If you need a good laugh about non-running injuries that still made running a no go check out the comments on my post HERE. I laughed way too hard at them because WE HAVE ALL BEEN THERE. Mom life and life in general is an extreme sport. We can be as fit as we want but then life is like "Nah, lets have you do something so simple that you need a week off".



(Life cheersing to me own demise and secretly taking joy in my pain)

So even though I KNOW I needed to rest my tweaked back I started going down the rabbit hole of my thoughts. (Hop, hop, hop)

Just some of the highlights:

  • Your going backwards

  • Your going to gain weight

  • Are you just using this as an excuse?

  • What’s going to happen tomorrow if it’s not better?

  • You should at least do something active

  • You haven’t ran or worked out since Tuesday (it was a Friday when I wrote this)


I was so disappointed that I let myself even think this negatively about myself because I KNOW better. If I don’t rest an injury no matter how minor, it can get so much worse. Two or three days of rest will not make me gain weight or lose progress. Hurting is not an excuse, it’s respecting my body and what it feels. Even injuries aside listening to your body is respecting it. If you had a long day with your kids and just don’t have it in you to run or workout, IT’S OK!!! We need more of this acceptance and less of the shaming. I think that if others REALLY supported each other we would naturally feel less and less of the need to tear ourselves down.


Now I know what some people may be thinking: But what if I find a reason not to all the time? If that’s a worry then I highly suggest making a checklist/questionnaire of sorts to help you.


Some samples from my own questionnaire are below:

  • Have I taken a rest day recently?

  • Have I used the same reasoning more than 2 days in a row?

  • Am I trying to justify the rest or trying to make myself feel less guilty for not wanting to run/workout?

  • Why am I telling myself to workout/run?

  • Do I feel like the rest will make me feel better and ready to tackle tomorrow?


(These aren’t hard and fast rules or set answers that tell me YES RUN or NO, GET IN YOUR PAJAMAS! This helps my just mentally check in to what I’m feeling and why I’m feeling it in regards to getting myself moving)




In case you haven't been told today: You do not need to workout to earn food or earn worth. You should workout because you want to and because it makes you feel good. We all KNOW this but it’s easy to say but harder to do.


I run to celebrate my body not to “earn” seconds at meals or to “prove that I’m not lazy”. Both of those horrible things that we can say to ourselves are nothing but lies and more ways to make us feel bad when again we are all just doing our best. As a matter of fact I’m going to cross out the following phrases from my thought process:


  • I need to show I’m not lazy

  • I need to prove that I’m tough

  • I don’t want anyone else to think I’m making excuses

  • What if I gain weight

  • I need to push through regardless

I encourage you to make your own list of phrases that you let seep in and make you feel bad. Then get a big red pen and cross that shit out. One at a time and really mean it. You can give an evil laugh while you do it, yell Wahoooo, or just simply make a angry face but take the power back and don't let these words, thoughts and other 💩drive you.



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