That photo that makes you cringe

Casual Friday

Dannie at Stile Foto Cibo recently wrote a post about what happens when you see “that” photo. You know, the one that makes you cringe? The one you can’t seem to laugh off. Yeah, I had one of those photos recently. And I’m going to share the outfit that caused it. Because, I don’t want to seem like I’m perfect or I have it all together. I’m a real person!


I’ve written in the past about my workouts, my weight lifting, and even how I tracked all my fat, carbs and protein “macros” to get a six pack, crazy arm muscles, and still lose 10 pounds. But, I kind of quit doing that about a year ago. Partially because I wasn’t eating enough for my activity level or I had lost too much body fat. Either way, my body was giving me signs that I needed to back off.


similar sweater | similar hat | similar scarf | same jeans | same boots | same socks

And then I started marathon training last October and definitely didn’t track what I ate. However, I also haven’t gotten on a scale in months. I’ve gained body fat, for sure. But I know I’ve gained some muscle and I’m definitely stronger! I finally broke my long-standing PR of a 100 pound bench press (managed 105 pounds!), can do six unassisted pull-ups, am able to do 5 reps of 65 pounds on my overhead press, and I ran a marathon time I never expected to be able to do.

So, even if I am not as lean as I was almost two years ago, it’s really okay. These quads and glutes are allowing me to do some awesome stuff. Having a six-pack is not necessarily sustainable long term for me. And sometimes you just gotta drink some wine, eat a burger and finish up with ice cream, you know?

Plus, as I was cleaning up in the locker room post-workout on Monday, another woman said to me, “So, I notice you every day at the gym and you look amazing. I’ve tried to figure out your routine. What’s your secret?” We are our own worst critics sometimes, aren’t we?

P.S. I created a “Shop My Closet” page that allows you to get some sneak peeks of upcoming outfit posts and see product details for them in advance!


7 replies on “That photo that makes you cringe

  1. jodie filogomo

    Good for you for keeping up the physical routine!! We do hold ourselves to such impossible standards, and then hearing a compliment from a complete stranger can put it all into perspective!!
    But what about this photo made you cringe?? I look at it and think it’s great!!

  2. Bethany @ Accidental Intentions

    Since I’m not a fashion blogger, I don’t see pictures of myself quite as regularly as someone who does blog about what they wear, but I came across ~that~ picture a couple of weeks ago and definitely cringed. It feels like a double-edged sword: on the one hand, ~that~ picture can be the push you need to make a change for yourself, but it can also send you down an awfully negative road. And all over something barely anyone else notices! Nearly every time I’ve ever heard someone complain about how they look in a picture, I haven’t been able to see what they’re nitpicking, even if I’m trying. We are certainly our own worst critics.

    Also, I can overhead press like 20 lbs on a good day, so the fact that you can do 5 reps of 65 lbs is seriously so mind-boggling and impressive to me. That’s a ton of weight!

    1. Erin @ Loop Looks Post author

      I think it’s even worse when you know what you’ve looked like the past and then you start comparing yourself to…yourself. But, yeah, I just keep reminding myself that it’s pretty difficult to be strong and tiny and tiny isn’t my goal anyway! Eventually I want to be able to overhead press my own body weight šŸ™‚

  3. Dannie

    This is a wonderful post. Thanks for the shoutout, too. I think it’s so important to talk about the cringe photos. But what you have to say is so true! I might not be quite where I’d like to be but with my yoga journey, I am able to hold poses now that I couldn’t even have dreamt of a year ago! I honestly love the look here. And I’ve been following your fitness journey. To be honest, I’m so incredibly proud of everything you’re doing! Cheers to strength!


  4. Jen @ Librarian for Life and Style

    I usually cringe when I see crazy wrinkles on my clothes because I didn’t get to take photos until the end of the work day, or when I realize my belly-button is SUPER visible because I never remember to “suck it in” for photos or forget that one’s tummy bulges when you lean over and laugh. Which I do all.the.time. But what about these photos made you cringe? Your outfit is super cute! (And you look GREAT in purple.)

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