Jenny Schatzle, the owner of an eponymous health and fitness center in Santa Barbara, California, received a wake-up call recently when she saw photos of herself that a friend posted on Facebook.
Personally, we think Jenny looks great—but she hated the snapshots.
“The picture was taken of me going all-out in a 250 meter sprint on a rowing machine,” Jenny wrote on her blog. “The photo not only caught my intensity; it also caught my belly.”
Jenny was sitting on the couch with her 14-year-old nephew when she spotted the pic, and she began frantically trying to figure out how to untag herself.
But she tells WomensHealthMag.com that her nephew’s comment stopped her: “He said, ‘Aren’t you the one who always tells everybody that you have to own it and love the body you have?’”
While Jenny says her immediate reaction was, “How could this person have posted that picture of me?!” she decided to leave the photo up…and repost it on her blog under the headline “Don’t ‘Untag’ Yourself.”
“I think it’s a very powerful message,” Jenny explains about her decision to get the photo in front of even more people. “No matter how positive and inspiring and awesome anybody is, we all have negative thoughts.”
Jenny says she hopes the photo will help people realize that they’re their own biggest bullies. “The first thing we see is what we think is wrong with ourselves,” she says. “We’re always the first to break ourselves down, but we need to appreciate what we have going on.”
Jenny later asked her friend why he posted that particular pic. His answer: He loved how buff her arms looked. “They actually did!” she said. “I just didn’t notice because I was so focused on my belly. It was an a-ha moment.”
Jenny has shared her story with her fitness classes and says she hopes her experience can influence others to avoid hitting “untag,” too.
Jenny also adds that she thinks it's okay to dislike a part of your body or how you look in a photo…just know that everyone else goes through the same thing—even super-buff fitness experts. “Everyone struggles,” she says. “But if you don’t truly love the person you are in the mirror, things are never going to change.”
By the way, Jenny plans to continue to practice what she preaches. If a friend posts another photo of herself that she’s not crazy about, she says she won’t untag it, adding, “You’ve got to own it.”