The Wellness Compliment That’s Actually an Insult, According to “Yoga Girl”

Photo: Instagram/@yoga_girl
Rachel Brathen is many things: an entrepreneur (she and her husband own Island Yoga in Aruba), a yogi, a philanthropist, a New York Times best-selling author, a podcast host, and a new mom. (She gave birth to baby girl Lea in March.)

But there's one thing Brathen—aka "Yoga Girl,"—doesn't want you to call her: "brave."

"If I have to read one more comment saying how 'brave' I am for showing off my post-partum body I'm going to SCREAM."

"If I have to read one more comment saying how 'brave' I am for showing off my postpartum body I'm going to SCREAM," Brathen posted on Instagram over the weekend.

"I understand that there is no bad intention behind saying that I'm 'courageous' for sharing photos and videos of me as I am, three months after having given birth, but what that actually means is that you look at my body and think that I am anything else but perfect and beautiful," she says. "Like I should be hiding a little bit, now that I weigh 15 pounds more than normal (I gained 40 during pregnancy) and have stretch marks and a belly that's soft and rounded."

And now that Brathen is back on the yoga mat, she wants to make it clear that she's not doing it to "get her body back," she told her 2.8 million followers. "My old body? Back? I have no intention in moving backwards, and I don't think my body is ever going to be what it was before," Brathen says. "I absolutely love this shape of mine and do not plan on jumping on any exercise routine to lose weight, or get toned, or fit, or thin."

But if you want to call her brave, Brathen says, there are a few ways she'll allow it: "Call me brave for giving birth! For raising a child! For running four companies! For voicing my opinion! Not for practicing yoga in a sports bra."

For more yoga badass-ery, check out how Jessamyn Stanley's at-home practice changed her life and the pose that just might ease your anxiety.

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