Went through an extended bulk through the year and am now in the cut part of the cycle. Feeling a lot more agile, have better aerobic capacity and am more energetic being a bit smaller. Have about 6 weeks left of this gentle cut, am enjoying how I am feeling in my body at the moment.
I still struggle with body image, even with my bf% being pretty low. It's hard to get out of the mindset that I should be super small/skinny because I'm an Asian female. In some ways, lifting heavy for the last few years has been very good for me. In other ways, it makes it hard because it's difficult to de-condition myself and people around me have certain ideas about muscular girls. I know how to diet myself down to "Asian girl" size (and have done it before easily), but I also know that it's not sustainable and is terrible for health in general. I made the choice to be different years ago, but it's a constant struggle to feel like my choice is the right one when everyone validates the other. I also feel guilty when I'm doing a cut, because I feel like I'm betraying my commitment to strength training and getting women to direct their focus away from getting skinny/small. It's complicated.
This thread is about "healthy habits", so I wanted to post a bit about a healthy headspace and the way that we talk to ourselves. It is important for our bodies to be healthy, but more than anything, it's important to appreciate that a healthy, full, enjoyable life includes a lot more than the physical aspect. There are also social components, mental components, and spiritual components, all of which interact with each other. I want to work in the space of nutrition and change the culture/perspective surrounding eating/working out, but what "health" means to people is obviously complex and highly individual. At the end of the day, "health" and "quality of life" really depends on priorities/goals, as well as how we see our place in the world - all of which which can change with time. Still trying to figure it out in 2018, but I thought I'd post here anyway. Hopefully things will become clearer in 2019.