Healthy + Happy: Inspired by My Mom


In honor of International Women's Day, or National Nutrition Month, or generally Having a Great Mom, or something, I wanted to give my mom a shoutout for teaching me that happy + healthy > skinny. My mom works hard for her body, doing an hour-long cardio and strength class (Jazzercise) at least 5 days a week. For more than 30 years. And it shows -- she has great blood pressure, a healthy heart rate, and can walk way farther and longer than my brother or I (seriously, bring comfortable walking shoes if you ever go on vacation with us. Lessons learned the hard way.). In fact, a few years ago my mom had her gallbladder removed, came home and cooked dinner that night. If that's not strong and healthy, call me a monkey's uncle. She also eats what she wants, when she wants, to help her body feel good. From not having a scale in the house, to prioritizing intellect and personality over looks, to emphasizing exercise and good food, my mom built an ideal body-image foundation. This isn't to say I've always had a healthy relationship with food, but it's been easy to develop one. I'm so grateful to my mom for helping me see that your waistline doesn't indicate how healthy you are, that big hispanic booties are a great ass-et, and that exercising and eating to feel good will make me way happeir (and healthier) than dieting ever will.