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Mad Positivity  | Looking Fit

By Shana Johnstone


What does a fit person look like?

You. A fit person looks like you. Because what you look like and what you can do are two separate things.

Consider a friend, perhaps one who is the same age as you—what’s something you can both do? Maybe together you’ve run a local race, or moved one of you into a new apartment, or snowshoed to a backcountry cabin. We’ve established that you’re both fit to do this. But do you look the same?

You can look different than the person next to you and yet be fit for the same activities. There’s more than one form possible for each function.

What I looked like at 20 is different from how I look at 40 and will be different from how I’ll look at 60 or 80. In all cases, my body was/is/will be able (I hope) to go for a hike, push furniture around, and lift the Thanksgiving turkey-for-twelve out of the oven. Four different looks, but capable of the same functions.

Now, not only is there more than one form possible that is fit for a function, there are also many functions—activities, sports, general life requirements. (And thank goodness for that, because it’s what makes life interesting.) Think of all the things you’re capable of doing, right now, in the body you inhabit. Maybe you take care of other people, or cart around pea gravel, or travel, or play hockey, or you are growing a human—while also doing all the other things!

If you’re doing it, you’re fit for it, which means a fit person looks like you.

Of course, it may be that you look different from your friend and you are each capable of different things. That’s good news. A diversified skill set is what will carry your team through to the next round. You need those people, and they need you.

We are fit for many things, and we look only like ourselves.