You might think that I am joking or even exaggerating but…..there are hundreds, probably even thousands, of black women who refuse to work out because of the negative impact it will have on their hair. Now, before you call these women crazy you have to understand the complex relationship women have with their hair, especially black women. Our hair comes in all shapes, sizes, textures, lengths etc. and all present their own challenges and their own beauty. We invest hours and hundreds of dollars on products, styles, pieces, etc. to achieve a certain look and it is quite concerning that this could all be for not. But I urge you, black women, like you do with most things….find a way to make it happen.
Black women are the most obese group in the U.S. and it is a problem! These stats are found on http://stateofobesity.org/disparities/ and obviously there are a few cultural things that need to be factored in such as diet, income…which affects diet, “thick trend” and so many other things, but let’s not make excuses and avoid finding or creating solutions.
Personally, when first starting out on my weight loss journey, I would skip the gym after a fresh perm or press and curl for fear of “sweating it out”. These skipped gym dates led to zero weight loss, so as cute as my hair may have been….I was still overweight. My example may be extreme, but that’s pretty much my character/life…I went natural, “big chop”, and cut it all off. After my “big chop” and the decreased manipulation of my hair and need to maintain that, my relationship with the gym changed. I really started working out and working out hard without fear of sweating out my straightened hair. I wore braids, wigs and twists and more wigs which allowed my hair to be in a protective style pretty much for two years straight. While this isn’t an advertisement to persuade everyone to “go natural” this is a call for everyone to find out a way to make the gym and your hair coexist and to do it fast! I have friends who have perms who just “wrap their up” in scarves or pin curls and friends who just rock a pony tail who don’t let their hair situation keep them in the overweight/obese category. If you have to do more protective styling, braids or use different products, make it work. Just don’t allow something as silly, because quite frankly it is silly, as messing up your hair style allow you to have health issues or to remain unhealthy.
If you’re wondering how my relationship with my hair has been over these past two years while losing/maintaining my weight, you wouldn’t believe it. I’ve always had a lot of hair and it grows at a pretty fast rate, but I’ve seen tremendous growth, so much so that it’s a lot longer and healthier than pre-big chop. Despite seeing growth after a cut on the regular, the foods that I’ve been incorporating as a part of my healthy lifestyle change have aided in healthy hair. Isn’t it funny how life works? HA! But in all seriousness, the different foods I had added to my diet, such as Greek yogurt, helped to provide some of the nutrients my body needed and wanted and the results were strong, healthy hair. Your body needs so many nutrients and fats to properly function and so often we don’t get them, but when choosing a healthier life style and changing up your diet you slowly begin to incorporate those things. Such as avocados, fish, and more fruits and vegetables which provide natural sources of vitamin C and essential fatty acids which aid in healthy hair, growth and retention. (source: http://www.foodmatters.com/article/11-foods-and-natural-remedies-for-healthy-hair-growth)
Everything in life comes full circle, if you’re good to your body, your body will be good to you. Do not allow fear or lack of knowledge of hair care to allow you to defer your healthy lifestyle change. Don’t allow the little things to prevent you from changing your life and developing healthy habits.
You can maintain healthy hair and a steady workout schedule!
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Disclaimer: I do not own rights to all photos on my blog and am not trying to portray as such! Photos were either taken by me, for me, or taken from varying media sites.