Strong is NOT the new SEXY (my thoughts)

I write this post with the acknowledgement SEXY is nothing to which I ever aspired.

It could be nature (good lord I was NOT the child who loved dress-up, make-up or sultrysexy styles).

It could be nurture (I was raised on FREE TO BE YOU AND ME. William? You may have a doll! Run ATALANTA run!!)

It just is.

Even before I discovered my love of weights  (& shifted even MORE to fitnesswear than fashion)—-I was the girl who spent fleeting moments SEXY’ING UP before a date & many moments on pre-going-out-girlfriend-giggling time.

After I discovered weight training & “found my strong” my mind turned less to SEXY than ever before.

The below was taken the morning of my first bodybuilding competition (drug tested natural competition…but thats a post for a different day).

sexy was the furthest thing from my mind...

sexy was the furthest thing from my mind…

  • I felt capable. 
  • I felt indomitable. 
  • I felt heard.
  • I felt empowered. 
  • I felt STRONG.

I saw lots of sexy that day, yet to my eyes the sexy wasnt a by product of the muscles—the confidence was.

I witnessed women of all shapes, sizes and states of preparedness for the show (I came in last) walking with swaggers which conveyed they’d worked hard, they were comfortable in their own skin, they were confident, they were STRONG.

I get the point of strong being the new sexy.

I understand the focus on if we can get mainstream media EVERYTHING to acknowledge beauty & sexy comes in all shapes and muscularSIZES it’s a tremendous step for all of us.  A step toward encouraging EVERYONE to lead a more active lifestyle.

The challenge for me (<—-am I alone in this?) is the fact the very definition of the word sexy feels as though it lessens the strong.


doesnt know the word sexy...

she LOVES strong. she doesnt know the word sexy…


Do I feel this way because of the type of adjectives I’d choose to describe me if given a choice?

Ive just never aspired to SEXY...

I do love this one…


Do I feel this way because, since I lifted weights a bit before it was “hip”, strong to me has always meant empowered?

are muscles my hidden cape?

are muscles my hidden cape?


Or is it because Im a mother now?  

Is STRONG the new confident?

I want her to be strong and confident…


For me muscles are empowering (BEYOND. I WANT THAT FOR MY CHILD!) yet the process? the end goal? Does not involve sexiness in the slightest.


I dont see SEXY I see COMFY IN SKIN-SUIT...


To me strong is not the new skinny. 

Strong is not the next SEXY.

If anything—for me—STRONG is a gift we give our children.

It’s a gift we bestow upon other women/girls in our lives.

It’s a silent message of ‘it’s ok to have muscles.’

It’s a constant wordless message of the notion it’s OK and AWESOME to be capable of exerting great force—physical and mental.

Sure at times strong can be sexy—-but isnt that the by product of strength? the confidence? the empowerment? the PRIDE?

For me strong is enough.

Strong just IS.


no other adjectives needed.

no other adjectives needed.


What is it for you?

How do you finish this phrase?

STRONG IS ________________


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  1. says

    I love this! It isn’t about being sexy, which to me implies you are doing it to look good to others. So they’ll want to have sex with you. Isn’t that what the word means? It’s fine to want to look good, but I don’t think strong is about that. Empowered is a great word. Alive.

    I’m not very fit but I’m working on it. When I do a Pump class, even though I probably use the lightest weights in the group (for a while I just used the bar with no weights!), I feel STRONG. Look at me (to myself in the mirror), I am lifting these lumps of metal! Go me!

  2. says

    THANK YOU, Carla! I’ve had it up to here with the “This is the new THAT” phrases ..

    Curvy is the new skinny … (so what about skinny girls?)
    Strong is the new sexy … (why are we even comparing these two?)

    It’s just another way to pick apart and juge parts of ourselves and other women. I’m not raising my daughter to think that strong = sex(y) or sex(y) + strong. Or that being skinny = weak. Or being curvey=”more of a woman” <— that one KILLS ME.


  3. Joy says

    Great post as always!
    For me: strong is the way to beat my eating disorder. I weigh a perfect amount according to my doc (though he’d like a couple more “security pounds) for the first time in years. What caused it? A barre class, a love of light weights with lots of reps, and believe it or not adoring burpees – do I love my body? Nope! Am I willing to give up the arms I’ve worked so hard on to go back to starving myself so I can’t walk let alone spin/run/lift hells to the no! For the first time in years I’m working out because I love it – not to burn. So I’d say strong is the new… Way of living

  4. says

    Loved every single word. I think ‘strong is the new…strong’ nails it perfectly.

    I like being strong. I like feeling sexy. I don’t want to feel sexy at the gym. (If you went to my gym, you’d know why.) Being strong(er) is enough motivation.

  5. says

    I think this post reveals how much we (women) need a new vocabulary. I had no problems with “strong is the new sexy” but now I see that when I saw that phrase I was seeing “sexy” as something that I should/do aspire to and as a proxy for self-confident, worthy, etc. But, I have no desire to be seen as “sexy” by anyone except my husband. Seeing you juxtapose the phrase with what you want for Tornado really hits home.

    • Shelley says

      Well said, Coco. This is the comment I was trying to formulate in my head, but you said it much better than I could have.

      Great post, Miz. For me: strong is the new breathing easy :)

  6. says

    This so hit a nerve for me. Having never thought of myself as sexy, yet often been called that by other people, I grew up with a sort of confused notion of what that even means. Now I’d say I’m definitely NOT sexy by any common or traditional definition, nor do I want to be. I’m fun, sweet, kind, casual… and that’s just what I want to be. But now… NOW… I’m raising a girl, and honestly, I’m terrified by the whole thing. I want her to be strong and confident and happy, and I wish I could find a way for her to never think about “sexy”. And yet, she’s already talking about how beautiful she will look when she gets a haircut or wears jewelry… I love that she feels beautiful, and I don’t want her NOT to feel that way, but I don’t want that to be her focus either. Lately she’s been asking to do yoga with me, and she’s always wanted to do pushups and such with me, so maybe I’m on the right track anyway…

    Sorry for the ramble.

  7. says

    Seriously you nail it on the head Every. Single. Time!!! Strong for me is comfortable and confident….when I feel strong I feel I can move mountains!! And yes…I don’t want that word in my daughters’ vocabularies…I want confident in it!

  8. says

    i agree and agree and agree. I don’t like the word sexy anyway. It bothers me. Not sure why. I love the word empowered, beautiful, confidant, TRUE, and REAL. That’s what strong means. yes?

  9. says

    I’ve always disliked the “strong is the new sexy” mentality, somewhat implying that skinny is wrong or bad now. I realize that it’s easy to “hate” on skinny because the media portrays it as best/perfect/etc. But we shouldn’t hate on any body type even if it’s the supposed dominant (read: most powerful not necessarily by numbers). How about something like “women, we’re all pretty DAMN good”

    • says

      Hi Morgan,

      I’ve never read it like that, but now that you mention it I can see your perspective. I don’t equate being strong with a being certain body type at all.

      You can be a strong ballet dancer, runner, bodybuilder, or even a beer drinker.

      I think that how a person feels about the saying is dependent on what it means to them to be “sexy” and “strong”.



  10. says

    So true! STRONG is the new THERAPY! Working out helps me tackle stress and alleviate stress of living an unhealthy vs healthy lifestyle for the years to come!

  11. says

    I love this! I want my children to be strong and confident and not even know the word sexy.

    I feeling more confident the more I weightlift.

  12. says

    I think when you feel, capable, indomitable, heard, empowered and yes, strong, it goes way beyond the outer shell, its something you achieve on a mental level too and that is quite powerful. You can be all kinds of strong but if you aren’t mentally present in your own life, whats the point? I think a lot of people struggle with making that connection, they can be one or other but struggle to be the whole package.

  13. says

    Fantastic post and point of view. I guess I see the muscles as empowering as well. I like feeling strong and confident and I suppose many see that as sexy. “It’s a constant wordless message of the notion it’s OK and AWESOME to be capable of exerting great force—physical and mental.” <—and that, love that.

  14. says

    Love this post! Strong is confidence. Strong is concentrating on what your body can do instead of how your body looks. I am convinced that if women concentrated more on what their bodies can do instead of how they look in a dress, everyone would be happier.

  15. says

    IT is complicated as they say. I think for me the problem is that even when sexy was good for old farts like me, I never felt sexy – EVER – and I do think it is a good thing to at some point feel that we are sexy in some way & maybe my definition of sexy is different than others. I never was the pretty one or sexy one or beautiful one & as you know Carla, way back when, that defined what made a person & to a large extent still does in this media driven world. So for me, I was never going to be good enough for the status quo – not me – but those companies out there that define it & this includes Corporate too since many times looks take over there too. I saw that first hand.

    I like Strong is the new sexy because I have muscles & felt & looked strong & maybe I was hoping it would become more a norm to look like you & me … so the whole thing is complicated in my mind. I like it because it tells girls that having muscles is a good thing… & you don’t have to look all “beautiful in the conventional way” or even a bit “slutty” to be sexy. A girl can have muscles & be string & still be considered sexy – my defintion of sexy.

    • says

      I agree with you Jody.

      Just about every picture I’ve seen of a woman with muscles has at least one comment made by some jackass saying, “she looks like a guy.” The thing is most of the guys I see look more like egg plants than fit and muscular anything.

      Screams of jealousy and insecurity to me.

      Strong is earned…Strong is empowered…Strong is beautiful.

      Love ya strong peeps!

  16. Healthy Mama says

    As the mother to three girls I agree.
    SEXY to me insinuates what I do not perceive strong to be.

    Interesting post.

  17. says

    I love love love this! Strong is strong. Well said! Strong can be empowering for some people, but if you’re not strong, are you not powerful? No. If you’re not strong, are you not sexy? No. It can be YOUR sexy if it makes YOU feel sexy, but let’s not add one more shoe people feel they need to squeeze into. If the shoe fits… ya know.

  18. says

    So agree with you, Carla. Saying “strong is the new sexy” puts the emphasis on the sexy – as if that is the goal; sexy is what we want to be and strong is just a way to get there. Let’s just be strong for it’s own sake.

  19. says

    gosh I love this post! Strong really for me means I can do it, I can do things I never thought I could do. Or things I never really gave myself credit before. It means I got over my over exercising and under eating and treated my body right for once!

  20. says

    Oh man. I love this post! I think striving to be strong shouldn’t only mean sexy. Sure, that might be part of it (especially confidence), but that isn’t the main reason why you should want to be strong!

  21. says

    Strong is mental.

    I’ve always been uncomfortable with the word sexy – this goes waaaaaay back. It’s not something I’ve ever aspired to be.

  22. says

    I guess I might not have made it clear that my idea of sexy is not what I see out there & that I want strong & muscles to be the definition of sexy & never having to think about the definition of sexy currently which we see mass media…

  23. says

    Strong is having a capable body (as in BodyCapable! :-))

    I loved the picture of you in your skinsuit and as a superhero!

  24. says

    I think you nailed it w/ strong is confident. As a mom to a daughter, I want to make sure that she grows up confident in what she can DO, not in how she looks. I grew up in an era and in a place where it was all about being pretty–not achieving. I really can’t stand that and I know it forms so much of my thinking on this. So anyhow–great point in this post!

  25. says

    I think strength is sexy, but because of the confidence it brings and the care and attention to you own health it shows. I too wouldn’t call it the “new” sexy, like I have to prove anything to anyone, or want the world to agree. All I know is now that I have some muscles and good health I strut around with a confidence and attitude that is, as a by-product, “the sexy”( as my husband jokingly calls it sometimes). I vehemently protest that what I do to be healthier is done for sexiness, to fit in to some sort of stereo type and be something the world wants me to be. I’m just me. And I’m strong…and dare I say sexy? :)

  26. cheryl says

    I lifted in the 70s for my sport. To be faster/have more endurance. I was usually first in whatever I chose to do-that in itself is a confidence builder.
    My competition, being fit and having a job that makes me financially independent from others gives me confidence and compliment each other.

  27. says

    sometimes I think we are the same person, then I realize you where tights I could never pull off and I’m terrified of tattoos…oh and I don’t have a child. But besides all the obvious things I have been having this very thought for quite awhile, I just couldn’t pin point how to say it. Love it!

  28. JD says

    I liked most of what you wrote. I do not like the Stong is the new Skinny. It’s not skinny, it’s strong!And while I totally get your point I think it’s best to say that you could probe further and make the statement that Strong is ALWAYS Sexy!! I think it’s time we take Sexy back. It is not a media word, it is not owned by men to discuss women and it most certainly isn’t owned by Victorias Secret. Sexy is Sexy, some are born with it some come to find it but it is so many things.. Sexy is empowered, confident, powerful, capable.. Sexy is absolutely strong! Every woman has her Sexy and so does every man!!! It;s something grand.. Being sexy is a word used to describe someone as sexually appealing. If a woman was exhibiting any of the traits above that is indeed dead sexy! And when a man make me laugh that is dead sexy too. Let;’s reclaim Sexy!!! And yes Strong is not the NEW Sexy- Strong is ALWAYS Sexy And so much more.

    • says

      I agree with you, JD.
      Sometimes when I read posts like this I feel conflicted. If we’re being serious, a lot of people workout of for a degree of vanity and to feel good about themselves. Yes, much is for health but quite a bit is to look nice (because those last.three. pounds…they aren’t a medical necessity). And perhaps my definition of sexy is different than the majority of people but I think people who feel good about themselves ARE sexy. I don’t think sexy means objectified (unless we’re talking about children – in which case my opinion is different). I just think…it’s ok to care how you look. And if you do, it’s ok to be honest about it.

  29. says

    I honestly couldn’t agree with you more, Carla. Strong is not something we use to objectify ourselves. Strong is how we are supposed to feel every day of our lives.

  30. says

    I love that your daughter knows strong but not sexy. I see so many little 5-6 yr old girls who already try to be (the media’s limited interpretation of) sexy. That’s just wrong, IMO. But strong? Every girl should aspire to strong.

    And, I have to say, I agree with JD ^^

  31. says

    I totally agree with your perspective, Carla – I was never one to embrace the word or idea of “sexy,” to be honest, and still am learning how to simply embrace being me and being comfortable in my own skin. Confidence is sexy, that’s for sure, and muscles help me feel confident!

    It’s funny, I’ve noted on several occasions that I feel most beautiful when I’m working out hard! I shower, change and get ready to go and don’t feel like I have the same “glow” I just did – more than the red face. 😉

    Strong is:
    …not new!
    …important to embrace!
    …possible for everyone!
    …admitting your weaknesses and pushing through plateaus.

    I could think about this for a while. Thanks!

  32. says

    Oh I love that shirt! And that pic of you laughing – you are glowing! I think the whole Strong Is the New Sexy “movement” is part of the mission to get our society’s ideal of beauty away from the stick-thin models of the past. And that is something I totally support. I also think said “movement” gets more women in the weight room which I think needs to happen. However, I like lifting weights and want to increase my strength because of how it makes me feel. Yes looks also matter to me, I will not lie. But I’m not lifting weights to get sexy. I’m lifting weights because I want to look and feel strong. So yes, strong is the new strong. I lift weights to build my strength both physically AND mentally. I don’t lift weights to be sexy for others.

  33. says

    So many different views! Interesting reading (loved your post) and the comments!

    I think STRONG is ME!!! (I know that is poor grammar but you get the point!)
    I don’t work-out to lose weight or for anybody but myself – I love the way it makes me feel, especially when I complete an exercise or work-out that I didn’t think I could!

  34. says

    I guess I look at it differently. I see the “Strong is the New Sexy” as a way of saying that

    Strong replaces Sexy.

    Where a girl/young woman felt she was judged/assessed/valued in the past ONLY by how “sexy” she was, NOW a girl or woman can be judged/assessed/value by something she does. By something she is that she can control.

    I’m still bothered that it’s a way to value women (or a way for a woman to value herself) that is a judgement.

    I’m bothered that we still reduce a woman’s worth to a tagline.

    But I’m NOT bothered by replacing the concept of sexy with the concept of strong.

  35. says

    I think the part that I agree with the most is that Strong is Strong. I think the reason we keep refering to it as “Sexy” is that seems to be what many women are striving to obtain or at least it’s presented that way in every publication you read and commercial you watch.

    For those of us that are looking for more than just being sexy, strong is just that strong. If you say it, and listen to it, the word itself exudes confidence and in my mind…THAT is what you want. Everything else comes after that but confidence comes when you feel you can take on the world!

    I have a job where strong is mandatory. If you aren’t you won’t survive. It’s sad I know but it’s the way it is. Staying fit, lifting, educating myself and making sure I know who I am as well as I can are all ways I stay strong.

    Great post..Hopefully people will start to see that there is nothing wrong with being STRONG!

  36. says

    I almost published a massive post today about something similar. I didn’t post it when I realized I was using terms like “biological and evolutionary imperative”. But the point remains. Sexy is what sexy is, it’s a subjective term. Strong is simply strong. Objective, yet still vastly different for each individual.


    I love the Tornado. That pic reminds me of how I like to tell people “I’m not strong for a woman, I’m just strong.” Strong for a girl has no meaning for her, nor does sexy because of her muscles. Fab.

  37. says

    Strong is empowerment and confidence! I do think that the phrase “strong is the new skinny” is a good one if only to show that being strong and healthy is a better goal that simply losing weight and being seen in that “ideal” light. Although I do see your point of view that we shouldn’t strive for either of these but rather to feel good about themselves. Honestly, I’ve never experienced a better feeling than finishing a CrossFit workout and thinking “Wow, I never thought I’d be able to do that”. ‘Strong’ is just an amazing personal feeling of “I can do it!” (whatever ‘it’ is).

  38. Janis says

    Thank you. It seems like with the way things are today, the ONLY WAY we can think of to “sell” anything to anyone is to pornify it, and I mean that in the worst way possible.

    It’s a faux-empowered way of saying, “Girls! Be strong but nonthreatening!” You know, empowered, but in a weak, cute, and vulnerable sort of way. The hell with that.

    • Sarah says

      That is it for me, Janis.
      I feel we push sexy on everything to sell it and to also make women weak.

      • Janis says

        Yep. Because everything damn thing we do has to have getting a may-un at the center of it. Be strong not because it’s fun, because you enjoy it yourself, because any adult human being should strive for it as much as they are able, or because it’s part of living a whole life. Do it to get a may-un!

  39. says

    I definitely think my mindset on “sexy” (which I can’t say I’ve ever strived to be) has changed since having a daughter. I would much rather my daughter be healthy and fit and comfortable with her body than sexy.

    Strength to me is both physical AND mental – and I have little doubt that she is going to be strong if she can fit all of those other dimensions into her life.

    But I love this because I agree… Nothing is the new sexy and strong is about so much more than muscles.

  40. says

    Yes, yes and YES! Sexy to me is how one comes across to someone else. Looking a certain way to please another. Strong is not that. Strong is confident and self-possessed.

  41. says

    Strength is life. Without it, you will likely end up weakened and old before your time. I’ve seen so many people who are too weak to enjoy a true quality of life. The seniors that I dance with are so joyous and sharp and strong. That’s what I want to be! Strength will get me there!

  42. says

    Fantastic post. You’re absolutely right- by saying strong is the new sexy, we’re assuming sexy is something we’re all striving for. I’d much rather strive for confidence and personal strength and want the same for my daughter. Thanks for this!

  43. says

    Strength is confidence. A majority of people assume that others who go to work out in the gym are just going to perfect their bodies and strive for “sexy”, but I think that they are wrong. A lot of people go to the gym for self empowerment and to be healthy. Sexy is an attitude not a look, and that can come as a byproduct of your strength!

  44. says

    Huge whopping AMEN! Strong doesn’t have to be sexy. There’s nothing wrong with those who want to be “sexy” but why can’t strong just be strong and that be awesome and wonderful in and of itself? i sure think it is! As I rock my yoga pants and sports bra. 😉

  45. says

    I get the point of strong is the new sexy. *However* – I hate the women are always relegated in trying to be sexy. It’s like saying that we have to improve all these aspects of our lives to just be sexy, not to be just smart or strong or artistic or confident in their own right. It’s annoying. Life isn’t just about ‘catching a man’ if you are a woman.

  46. says

    Strong is just strong. Works for me!

    I like to do things with strong, however, more than picking up heavy metal and putting it back where it was. Picking up large bags of horse feed, that’s a good strong, from the horses point of view :-)

  47. says

    I completely agree that calling strong the new sexy diminishes what strong is. The two are NOT synonymous, and they don’t need to be. Sexy to me just has a different connotation, and for the most part I equate “sexy” value with being for someone else’s benefit, not my own. Strong is just for me.

  48. says

    I love this post! Why does the goal of health have to be to feel “sexy”? It truly is about so much more–confidence, empowerment, accomplishment of achieving a goal you’ve set out for yourself. I think it comes back to having a passion for the work you put it that goes so much deeper than looking a certain way. For me, strong is the result of determination. It is accomplishment, and it is proof that I can do more than I give myself credit for.

  49. says

    Strong is good. Sexy is good. You can be one, both, or neither. I get why the quote is there (telling women that strong is GOOD), but it is a bit of a misnomer fo sho.

  50. Janis says

    You know what this is? You know what that saying “strong is the new sexy” is?

    “Attention boys, I may be strong, but I’m still sexy!”

    That’s what it’s really saying, deep down.

    And do you know the old saying that when someone says “I think X, but Y,” that they are actually disagreeing with what came before the comma? “I think that XYZ is the best thing since sliced bead, buuuuuuut … ” and whatever may follow, you know that the person doesn’t think anything of the sort.

    “Strong is the new sexy” means “I’m strong boys, but I’m also sexy!”

    And what that means is that sexy is how you apologize for being a turn-off to men for being strong. “I’m strong, but I’m sexy!” == “I know strong is bad, but I can make up for it!”

    Any woman who feels she needs to apologize or “balance out” her strength by being sexy is not really strong. Deep down, she fears that her strength makes her UN-sexy and unappealing to men and others who are threatened by strength in women, so she is trying to overcompensate for it with sexiness.

    No truly strong human being will apologize for their strength. And anyone who sees it as something to apologize for is someone you’re better off without.

  51. says

    The word ‘sexy’ bothers me because it is all pervasive. Turn on the radio and all you’ll hear top 40 bands singing about is sex and sexy. My kids and I love the music but I’m not a big fan of the lyrics.

    Can’t stand ‘skinny’ either and how it’s been used to label everything from snacks to wine…

  52. says

    Strong is empowering! It builds not only physical strength, but mental strength. I hope all of our girls grow to be Strong women!

    I guess I don’t find “strong is the new sexy” to be as offensive as most. I definitely think strong can be sexy! And strong women radiate a confidence that is attractive. That said it is a shame that things have to be so “sexualised” before they are acknowledged as beautiful or desirable in our culture.

  53. says

    You nailed it. I have difficulty with the need to associate a word like sexy, cute, etc with girls. Why not just strong? As the mama to a little girl, I cringe when people fawn over her saying you are so pretty or cute. She’s more than that. She’s smart, funny and strong. Let’s not forget those very important traits!

  54. says

    My ultimate goal is to be able to move my own couch when I’m 70.

    Strong is capable.

    Thanks for the great post.

  55. says

    “the fact the very definition of the word sexy feels as though it lessens the strong.” << YES! Thank you for articulating what I couldn't put my finger on. I've never liked that saying. Strong is so much more than that – confident, empowered, capable. And yes, more than anything, I want my kids to be strong – body, heart and mind.

  56. says

    Ack. Constantly blown away by YOU. Strong is…YOU. I admire you SO SO much. For about a million reasons, and only one of which is the fact that you are incredibly strong and confident and centered. I DIG that.

  57. says

    You know, I’ve felt sexy most of my adult life. I felt sexy at 200 lbs, at 140 lbs, and at 170 lbs. I rarely felt strong. Physically strong. I have always been mentally and emotionally strong (more so on some days that others) but becoming PHYSICALLY strong has definitely been empowering in many ways and certainly helped with those internal strength measures as well. And yup, makes me feel sexy too – tho I agree that little bit of extra oomph has more to do with confidence and empowerment. It’s all intertwined! (Isn’t everything?)

  58. says

    So very true, I never thought of it this way but once again you get us thinking, thank you! And btw I grew up on “Free to be you and me” as well, serious flashback there to Marlo Thomas’s voice. Did you ever listen to or read the series “The Point” by Harry Nilsson? kind of off topic but from that generation.

  59. says

    LOVE the shirt. And the sentiment.

    Plus… there are a lot of other things that can be sexy, other than strength. The ‘Strong is the new sexy’ mantra implies that curves don’t count….


  60. says

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  61. says

    Strong is Beautiful and I believe this because “beautiful” to me means beauty that radiates from the inside out. It’s not a physical adjective but one that rather is about being honest, true to one’s self. Recognizing that we have flaws and make mistakes, but we are able to recognize them and work on them to be a better person! Beautiful to me is strong physically, but more emotionally. Because once you feel beautiful inside you are unstoppable and that is so STRONG! XOXO

  62. says

    Exercising, lifting, taking care of myself has always made me feel empowered…strong!

    I am strong both inside and out no matter my shape or size! I didn’t start my journey to health and fitness to feel sexy..I started because I had to take care of myself. As a result of it, I felt empowered and stronger than ever :)

  63. says


    I thoroughly agree that Strong is STRONG.

    If you haven’t seen it already, you’ll probably appreciate Dr. Caroline Heldman’s TED talk about “the sexy lie.” She approaches the issue from the media perspective, but comes to a similar conclusion about empowerment. (Please email or Tweet me if you can’t find the link — I hate leaving links in comments. Seems like spam!)

  64. says

    LOVE! That’s all I can really say about this awesome post!
    Strong is….whatever you believe, it’s so individual to each person!

  65. says

    Strong is strong. I think sexy is feeling comfortable in your own skin, not just showing off your skin. I want my daughters to feel strong and comfortable, I want them to be confident in themselves and I do not want them wanting to be “sexy”. Great post Carla.

  66. says

    You know, regardless of whether one’s goal is to be sexy, or beautiful, or strong, or anything else, I just hate all quips that indicate if you’re not ______ than you’re not _______. Saying “strong is the new sexy” implies that if you’re not muscular than you cannot be sexy. I HATE it when I hear people say things like, “Real women have curves.” I mean, curves are great, and fine, and lovely. But saying that implies that if you are not curvy than you cannot be a woman. It’s terrible! I just think it makes more sense to be your confident, smart, strong, and sexy self, whatever that means to you, and stay quiet about what qualifies as smart, strong, sexy, or confident.

  67. Deb says

    *Crazy Running Legs* sent me over, and I’m staying! I love being strong and agree with everything you say. Being and staying strong is going to allow me to be independent in my golden years. I plan on getting stronger regardless of how others perceive muscles on a 5’2″, 50 year old wife/mother/woman. You’ve inspired me. Thank you. Now, where’s your subscription link?

  68. says

    It’s hard to come by knowledgeable people on this topic, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks


  1. […] Strong is NOT the new Sexy (My thoughts) The saying “Strong is the new sexy” has been floating around for a little while now. It’s meant to encourage and empower women and to acknowledge that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. But does associating “strong” with “sexy” lessen the impact of the word “strong”? Do muscles have anything to do with sexiness? Should it and how does that impact our children? […]