This was written by a dear friend of mine and was run last New Years Day on the old blog. I am bringing it over here and feel it’s perfect for the resolution time of the year. My resolution? Set a personal record at The Boston Marathon. The training starts….NOW! Oh yeah, also be a better human being….
After decades of frustration, I finally embraced a life-long desire to express feminine feelings as a M2F crossdresser and committed to achieve a realistic modern woman look. At about the same time, I also committed to a much healthier lifestyle and in retrospect now believe that was no coincidence.
Successful crossdressing to achieve a desirable feminine image has clearly been a motivator for improving my health in many ways. So now, through this article, I encourage others to set crossdressing goals to improve and maintain good health.
Imagine an anxious, obese, foul breathed, blotchy/wrinkly skinned, middle-aged man who looked much older than his chronological age, needed a handful of prescription medications, had no real social life (too busy working!), was winded after climbing a single flight of stairs, slept fitfully, and was near estrangement with almost all family members. Right-That was me!
Today I am often perceived to be at least 20 years younger both in looks, energy, and attitude. My relationships and career are at all-time highs and I’ve never been more confident. I no longer take those prescription drugs, my kids think I am “cool”, my wife thinks I’m sexy and fun to be around, and strangers often say I am a beautiful person inside and out. I feel fabulous!
I visualized a well-kept classy woman image as my ideal goal and then took steps to achieve that result. This article identifies some of my physical goals, motivation for doing so and the positive health impacts experienced. In summary, visualization of that beautiful woman over an extended time period, was useful and, I believe, would also motivate other crossdressers to improve their health.
Oral Hygiene: You are never fully dressed without a smile! Look around – you are likely to notice that one of the most attractive features a woman can have is a winning smile and if lucky, a brilliant set of teeth. It starts with good oral hygiene. Daily brushing and flossing is a foundation and anyone serious about eliminating bad breath and gum disease takes further steps such as twice yearly dental cleaning and checkups. It’s easy to find evidence, from articles in popular health magazines and serious to medical studies on oral hygiene to learn that maintaining a healthy mouth may also ward off a surprising range of other medical issues. Today I brush my teeth at least twice a day and sometimes more as a low calorie way to temporarily satisfy and ward off hunger cravings! This has helped with diet and weight management. When someone says “Smile for the camera” – there is no reason to hesitate. Note: if crossdressers are present, there are most likely cameras too.
Hydration: The difference between grapes and raisins is water. A secret to firm facial skin is proper internal hydration. Yes, there are lotions and gels to apply topically, but drinking adequate water helps naturally from the inside out. Of course water helps internal organ function, is an aide to digestion, and provides a feeling of fullness when hungry to again ward off hunger cravings. Now, I drink lots of water daily and even more when booking a makeover because experienced makeup artists request at least a couple days of maximum hydration to achieve a firm skin tone. This simple step has worked wonders for me.
Diet: Nothing tastes as good a being skinny. It was frustrating to have so few stylish or fashionable wardrobe choices, and those that were available were not consistent with my imagined shapely slender classy lady image. With a simple low calorie/low carbohydrate diet and daily exercise over a year, more than 70 pounds melted away! My motivation was clear: a diverse high quality classy lady wardrobe. Today, depending on designer and style, I can wear a size 12 to 14. Goodbye Mumu collection! There are now many more fashionable choices! Also, I slowly eat small portions, and always with utensils – never with my hands. Doing this contributes to an important ladylike appearance when dining out and fewer bites compared to my former pace. Not surprisingly, weight reduction resolved many related health issues notably hypertension – my Doctors were as delighted as I was!
Posture: Good posture is a key visual identifier of good health and most anyone can have it. A sophisticated and stylish woman sits upright, stands tall, and walks with confidence. This is easier said than done and requires a great deal of practice however the health benefits are many. Stress reduction, stronger core muscles, and less pain are three of the most cited health benefits of good posture. Today, I am confident when professional photographers ask me to pose in ways that benefit the camera but are not naturally comfortable – however I can usually achieve those positons because of good posture practices gained through activities such as yoga. I must admit that when wearing heels, my posture and attitude naturally snap to attention and I am much more conscious of my body movements and posture. When dressed, friends tell me that my posture signals good taste, refinement, and harmony. Who wouldn’t want to hear that?
Toning: A toned body appears healthier. Nice women’s clothes look better on a toned body. Regardless of weight, a body with less fat and more muscle, up to a point, appears healthier. As a bonus, a toned body is usually more capable and confident on the dance floor. To maintain a toned appearance, I worked with smaller sized weights, did higher reps and took a brisk long walk daily. Doing this has, so far, helped greatly.
Psychological and Emotional Benefits
Everyone knows that healthy living is good for the body. But it is also one of the most effective ways to improve your mental and emotional health. A healthy lifestyle can have a profoundly positive impact on depression, and anxiety and it also relieves stress, improves memory, helps you sleep better, and boosts overall mood.
This was especially important to me because it was so clear that there was a huge difference between looking like a woman and acting like one. I needed to overcome the unhealthy fear and loneliness that many crossdressers experience. Note: I recently read that loneliness is as unhealthy as smoking 15 cigarettes daily!
To achieve the physical goals listed previously, it was vitally necessary to exercise. However, the idea of exercise was, on its own, downright depressing. I felt overwhelmed and my abused body felt pain – and I hadn’t even started yet! Overcoming those barriers was only possible for me by visualizing the beautiful woman I might become. Truthfully, it was hard but ultimately it worked!
Today I continue to exercise regularly because it provides an enormous sense of well-being. I feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better at night, have sharper memories, and feel more relaxed and positive about myself.
A Note on Depression
As a closet crossdresser, I was chronically depressed, and had no one to talk to about it. My condition was deleterious to me and those I interacted with – who had no idea.
Exercise was a powerful depression fighter for several reasons which at first I did not fully understand. Today I believe physical fatigue from exercise promoted feelings of calm and well-being, released endorphins (powerful chemicals in your brain that energize your spirits and make you feel good) and served as a distraction, allowing me to find some quiet time to break out of the cycle of negative thoughts that fed depression. Walking was my exercise of choice and a brisk morning circuit outdoors has become my daily medicine. Note: It mattered where I exercised: Thirty minutes outdoors breezed by joyfully while 5 minutes on a treadmill seemed an eternity!
Photos of that toned well-proportioned pretty woman were taken of me over the past few years of my metamorphosis. Would you believe my chronological age is ……Ooooops! That is still a secret, but regardless of chronological age, I feel, look and act much younger. I feel great and hope you think I look it too.
Inspiration for a healthy lifestyle can come from anywhere and I believe that successful crossdressing was an important one for me. Doing my best to appear as a beautiful well-kept sophisticated woman was a surprisingly pleasant and powerful motivator! This can work for you too and the techniques I discussed are free!
Side Benefit: Remember that a healthier you is not a selfish goal. Sure, you’ll feel better yourself but if you are healthier, everyone around you will also benefit. Living longer and being more engaged as a parent, partner, or colleague is a bonus. When you are healthy and fit, life is better for everyone all around you.
I like to believe that successful crossdressers will someday enjoy longer lives and eventually lower health insurance premiums because of their healthier lifestyle. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Nora can be followed and contacted via Flickr. Her profile is at https://www.flickr.com/photos/norasim1/.