TW: discussion of body image and diet culture
It seems that many fitness accounts seemed to blossom at the start of lockdown. Posts with phrases like “COVID CALORIES” and “use this time to get fit” seemed to litter my Instagram page.
Megan Jayne Crabbe – aka @bodyposipanda is different. Following her in this time has allowed me to remind myself that this is a literal pandemic. No, I am not going to spend my time running or doing ab exercises just because it gives me something to do, or something to feel proud about over lockdown. Throughout this time, social media influencers have told us that we can spend time “achieving something”, quite a lot of this being placed upon our looks and fitness.
Megan uses her platform to teach body neutrality and positivity, the idea that we are more than our bodies and that weight gain during this time is not something to fret over. In her words “Now’s the time to be gentle with yourself as you are with the people you love”.
Since following her, guilty thoughts about my banana bread consumption, or how my one walk a day may have just been a short stroll along the Durham river have been rationalised and averted. The pounds I may have gained over lockdown is not something I should be punished over. Instead, her posts remind me that our bodies can overcome two types of virus: the physical and the mental.
Focusing on loving our bodies because of what they do, rather than how they look, has never been so important. With gyms closed and baking on the rise, Megan Jayne Crabbe normalises the mundane aspects about the body. Rolls on our back, hairs on nipples, things we want to “erase” about ourselves are discussed in a way that reminds us of the toxic diet culture we are sadly subjected to due to social media expectations.
Not only that, she is vocal about political matters that are becoming more persistent within society. A mental health advocate as well, Megan is an influencer who uses her platform to inspire and enrich us, to remind us that we are more than our physical selves. Discussions about the Black Lives Matter movement are prominent on her page, educating her followers about the systemic racism that prevails within our society today. In doing so, she certainly is a role model for everyone.
It should also be noted that her posts are easy to read and digest, with bright colours and a relaxed writing style. She puts a description of her images at the bottom of each post, making her page accessible to everyone. No one is left out in this body image revolution.
I implore everyone to follow and read her posts. Women empowerment has never felt so good.
Image: Elle Woods-Marshall