Body-shaming

Expecting endurance athlete combats critics who call her pregnant body “too small”

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in this image these two women are at about the same stage in their pregnancies – 39 weeks. that is the gorgeous @tessholliday looking boss on the left and me with the defined abs on the right. she is a voluptuous model and I am a sinewy mountain athlete. both of us are shamed for our size – she for her roundness and me for my smallness. both of us are having or had healthy pregnancies as validated by our healthcare providers. both of us are making empowered choices about our personal health. ✨why does our society shame women whose bodies do not adhere to some narrow notion of false normalcy? ✨ let's instead keep our thoughts and words about other people's size to ourselves. pregnancy is tough enough without also being body shamed. #effyourbeautystandards #momshame

A post shared by ▫️Brittany Aäe ▫️ (@raven__aae) on

Endurance athlete and coach Brittany Aäe was tired of people telling her that her pregnant body was “too small,” and that her abs were still visible after 39 weeks of pregnancy. So she posted a selfie of her pregnant belly to Instagram alongside a photo of Tess Holliday, a plus-size model who, like Aäe was about 39 weeks pregnant. “Both of us are shamed for our size,” noted Aäe in the caption. “She for her roundness and me for my smallness.”

Speaking with Elle, Aäe revealed that she was “a big fangirl of Tess’s,” and that she had posted the photos to help disabuse “the general idea that women’s bodies are somehow public property.” Aäe, who has since given birth, says that she “knew there would be a lot of athletes out there looking for a positive story,” and that she wants to help people overcome the “fear-based” narrative that surrounds working out while pregnant. Contrary to what many believe, recent studies have found that exercise during pregnancy is not only not bad for mothers, but good for them.

Read the full story at Refinery29.

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