Kate Upton is wanting to help people learn that they don’t have to live up to someone else’s beauty standards. The blonde bombshell recently posed for Health magazine, coming up with a series of unretouched photos that show off her natural beauty.
Kate Upton burst onto the scene a decade ago, when “curvy” models were rare. Since then, she has been told over and over that she needed to lose weight if she wanted to make it big in the fashion world, and the comments got into her head. These days, she has decided that she wants to be as healthy as she can be — and she often refuses to compare her body to those of other women.
As part of her new outlook on body positivity, the Sports Illustrated cover model posed for a series of images that are totally unaltered. She has also started a workout program called Strong4Me, one which encourages women to get as healthy as they can be without comparing their journey to someone else’s.
Upton says that she was a confident kid growing up in Florida, but that once she started modeling, things changed.
“In a lot of ways, I think the industry really built me up and tore me down — and then I built myself back up,” she said in her interview with Health magazine.
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I was inspired to start @strong4mefit because I was searching for over eight years for a fitness program that was effective, but also practical and sustainable. Working long hours and travelling often made it especially difficult to stick to a routine that actually worked for my body. Now, being a new Mom it’s even more important to make sure I’m consistently healthy and strong, but it’s even harder to find the time! A trip to the gym involves pumping, breastfeeding, checking every two minutes for leaks, driving to and from, being social on no sleep… it’s a lot! Being able to take my actual gym routines and adapt them to being at home has been a game changer. On my cardio days I still try to get out and active, and for those that love the gym these workouts are great there too… but that’s just not practical every day for me at least, and now there’s a great program to follow no matter where you are. I have finally been able to be consistent with my workouts which is key to any results or success. I wanted to share this program because after years of searching I realized I wasn’t the only one, and I hope women everywhere will enjoy the program, results and flexibility as much as I do! #Strong4Me
Upton added that when she first started out in the modeling world, her measurements — and what size of clothing she fit into — were the most important thing.
“It would be like, ‘Oh, you don’t fit into those jeans.’ You’re shamed. And that’s why it took me a longer time to get to a healthier place. That’s why it’s important for me to push out this different mind-set,” she said.
“I don’t want anyone to have to be in that negative space where they think, ‘Oh, no! I don’t fit into that size 2 dress.’ You know what, who cares? Buy another one!”
These days, she says that she doesn’t let the criticism impact her self-image. She has found balance by eating well, working out, and putting her needs first.
Upton says that she wants women to see her unretouched photos because social media has encouraged an unrealistic expectation of what bodies should look like. Instagram influencers frequently retouch their images, and that has caused a great many people to think they should look a certain way, per the model. To counter that, Upton wanted to show her body without the filters — embracing who she is while encouraging others to do the same.