Elizabeth Zaks is a 20-year-old fitness blogger who embodies the best of the new wave of fitness blogging, which focuses on body positivity, acceptance and health. Elizabeth originally started sharing her fitness journey on You-Tube and Instagram as a way to help her stay on track, and get in touch with other young women on the same fitness path. She didn’t realize that her workout routines and fitness images would quickly blow-up; Elizabeth has gone from a few hundred You-Tube followers to near 60,000.
Elizabeth started out struggling with body image the way many of us do. She wrote me in an email interview, “In middle school I was bullied almost every day for my thin “chicken” legs. To this day, I have moments when I’m completely frustrated with the genetics I have been given. Accepting my flaws and being able to laugh at myself is definitely something that has helped me love my body- at the end of the day no one else’s opinion matters but your own.”
Elizabeth was empowered when she started lifting weights. She felt like weight lifting helped her to understand her body, to test herself, and ultimately, to obtain a feeling of not just physical strength, but emotional. “There’s something about being in control of your body,” she writes, “understanding it, nourishing it and making it stronger every day that provides this feeling of overwhelming confidence. You feel in control.”
After establishing a fitness routine, Elizabeth set up a few YouTube videos outlining her weight lifting routine, and her audience grew quickly. Elizabeth makes a point to tell her followers that fitness isn’t about changing your body’s unique structure, but enhancing it.
She emphasizes, “Body positivity is very important to me, especially with how much pressure the media puts on men and women’s bodies and how many unrealistic things are expected of us. There are too many fitness accounts that have a huge platform and are only using it to promote their “perfect image.” Even though my platform may not be as big as theirs I refuse to promote a fake version of myself. I make sure my followers know that we’re all just people. I bloat, I have veins, I have stretchmarks, I have scars- it’s a part of being human! I make a joke of it and never take myself too seriously online, and I think that helps get my message across.”
Her fans seem to appreciate it. Elizabeth posted a recent bikini photo that included a slight stomach pooch from lunch:
Not even pregnant just eatin good 😋 @falcofit and I had a maternity photo shoot for our food baby, it's a burrito! ☺️🎉 But seriously, why does every fitness model or "fitspo" out there swear they eat junk food all the time but look shredded 24/7??? Like are you sure you actually eat it??? 😟 (it's a joke, no need to get butt hurt) Remember ladies and gents, food is not the enemy. New video about hourglass figures and thigh gaps,(it's not what you think I swear) link in bio! Check it out. 😊❤️ #happysaturday #foodbaby
Commenting: “Remember ladies and gents, food is not the enemy.”
Her fans commented back:
“You’re such an inspiration.”
“You’re my favorite.”
“OMFG I love this.”
Elizabeth is loving her new growing platform, and the interaction with her fans. When I asked her about other fitness bloggers that she admires, she responded, “Two of my favorites would have to be Arianna Dantone, and Nikki Blackketter.”
Now that she’s invested personally in the world of social media, I wanted to know what Elizabeth thought of how social media is affecting women’s self-esteem. “Most fitness inspiration accounts promote this false image of themselves which can set out the wrong impression on people, male or female,” she wrote. “I think it’s very easy to get caught up in someone’s lie and suddenly feel awful about yourself and your progress. It all depends on who you follow and what account you choose to invest your time in.” Well said.
I love to see body positivity starting to shine through the new generation of fitness bloggers, who like Elizabeth, are keeping positivity at the head of all their fitness and nutrition goals. More of this!
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