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22 Powerful Stories About Feminist Awakenings

From personal experiences to Beyoncé and everything in between, people have found feminism in lots of different ways.

Will Varner / BuzzFeed

We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to share their stories about what sparked their feminist awakenings. Here are their powerful responses:

1. “I started following a girl on Tumblr who happened to be a feminist.”

I started following a girl on Tumblr who happened to be a feminist; I read almost everything she posted about feminism and it just made sense. It clicked. I realized some of the ideas I had grown up with were really toxic and there is so much internalized misogyny in most girls.
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2. “I was told ‘just touching’ me was not a crime.”

When I was walking downtown with my mother and a stranger grabbed my crotch, I was in shock. My mother called the cops and when I went to make a formal complaint I was asked what was I wearing and then I was told “just touching” me was not a crime. I was a teenager, and I didn’t know it was feminism back then, but I just knew that no one should say it’s OK to touch another person’s genitals just because they didn’t rape you, regardless of what you’re wearing.
–Paulis Grienssen (Facebook)

3. “The fact that Beyoncé stood before millions in front of the now iconic FEMINIST sign empowered me to openly be a feminist.”

Mine came from Beyoncé, specifically her song “Flawless” with the excerpt from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Adichie speaks with such conviction that it immediately resonated with me. That, and the fact that Beyoncé stood before millions in front of the now iconic FEMINIST sign, very much empowered me to openly be a feminist and to fight for the rights of other women and men experiencing sexism and gender rules.
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4. “When I went in to give my application, the older lady said, ‘This is no kind of job for a woman.'”

When I was 14 I was applying for a job at a place that builds lawn chairs. From the time I was little I was always my Dad’s sidekick and he is a contractor, so I knew exactly how to do this kind of work. When I went in to give my application the older lady that was the manager, she said, “This is no kind of job for a woman.” That is when I proceeded to notify her I had previous experience and she completely dismissed me. The thing that stung the most was it was a fellow woman who dismissed me.
–Savannah Snow (Facebook)

5. “I asked my dad why I always had to wash the dishes. His only answer was, ‘Because you’re a girl.'”

Ever since I was little, I always had to wash the dishes. If I didn’t, then I would be grounded. I have three brothers who did nothing after dinner, so when I was 14 I asked my dad why I always had to wash the dishes. His only answer was, “Because you’re a girl.” I was pissed off and we got into a fight because he never made my brothers do anything around the house. My brothers and parents expect me to have a bunch of kids and become a housewife, but ever since that day I decided to start doing things for myself and myself only.
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Will Varner / BuzzFeed

6. “Super Smash Bros. had only one usable female character, which was Zelda.”

It was playing video games as a child with my male cousins. The GameCube games we had were all male-oriented, and even my favorite, Super Smash Bros., had only one usable female character, which was Zelda (though I had no idea that Samus was a girl until I was older). I thought about how wrong it was because I saw that everywhere, girls were always weaker in everything, like in video games they were the worst players. I never knew there was a word for it until recently, but when I did, it felt right.
–Meagan McDowell (Facebook)

7. “I was raped … when I talked to an officer to press charges, they said that I wouldn’t stand a chance.”

I was raped when I was 19. When I talked to an officer to press charges, they said that I wouldn’t stand a chance because the court would bring up the fact I was drunk, went to his place willingly, and I’ve slept with other people. A month later, I saw the guy at the bar and he actually tried to take me home with him. That’s when I realized that I’m a feminist and I deserve the right to say no. I deserve to not have what happened to me be just one more story of a discredited woman who, instead of being taken seriously, was told that she was asking for it.
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8. “I want my girls — and EVERYONE — to know that women are capable of greatness.”

I have two daughters; one of them was born with a heart defect that may affect becoming a serious athlete in the future, and my older daughter has serious food allergies. Considering there are medical restrictions being put on them as it is, it was at the moment my daughter’s cardiologist discussed her potential physical limitations that I became a feminist. I don’t want them to think they cannot be intelligent, brave, vivacious, brilliant, and capable just because they are women. I want my girls — and EVERYONE — to know that women are capable of greatness and that the limits of achieving that greatness is up to each individual.
–Catherine Cara Toler (Facebook)

9. “He only valued me as another guy’s property.”

I was at a party and the only way I could get this one guy to leave me alone was to lie and say I was in a relationship. I realized that he only valued me as another guy’s property and not as a human being who deserves respect.
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10. “I had never heard anything about being pro-choice and their signs intrigued me.”

Growing up, I lived a few blocks away from my town’s Planned Parenthood and there were always a good number of protesters outside, holding signs and chanting. One day there was a group at the end of the street protesting the anti-choice group. I had never heard anything about being pro-choice and their signs intrigued me. I looked it up, discovered the word feminism, and my identity as a feminist has remained since.
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11. “[The Spice Girls] dressed the way they wanted, acted the way they wanted, and loved themselves.”

The Spice Girls. Here were these girls that dressed the way they wanted, acted the way they wanted, and loved themselves even if people thought their clothes were too loud or too revealing. It was a big reveal to me that being a woman meant being who you wanted to be and that loving yourself gave you a power over the people who wanted to belittle you. That made little 11-year-old me a feminist.
–Sonya Ballantyne (Facebook)

Will Varner / BuzzFeed

12. “I’ll be perfectly happy because I don’t need a man or children to validate me as a woman.”

My road to feminism began with the rape of my best friend and ended with a conversation I had with a male relative. “Kalie, if you lost weight, you’d have guys crawling all over you,” he said.

“Well, I wouldn’t be interested in anyone who knew me before the weight loss and approached me after. A man should love me for me, not my weight,” I replied.

“I don’t see you getting a lot of offers. You should lower your standards,” he countered.

“You know what, Dad, I’m amazing; I have so much to offer a man that my standards should be high. All I want is a man who will love and respect me because I’m a unique human being with passions, hopes, and dreams. That’s not too much to ask. And if, God forbid, I don’t get married or have children, that’s fine; I’ll be a kick-ass career woman with amazing friends and a dog. And I’ll be perfectly happy because I don’t need a man or children to validate me as a woman,” I said.

He ended the conversation by saying, “Oh Kalie, please don’t be a lesbian.”
–Kalie Hoke (Facebook)

13. “I don’t remember how old I was, probably early teens, but I remember Jo March in the 1994 version of Little Women.”

I don’t remember how old I was, probably early teens, but I remember Jo March in the 1994 version of Little Women saying, “I find it poor logic to say that because women are good, women should vote. Men do not vote because they are good; they vote because they are male, and women should vote, not because we are angels and men are animals, but because we are human beings and citizens of this country.” To this day, that is what I believe about equality: Regardless of gender, color, age, orientation, or place of birth, we are human beings.
–Christian Paul Keller (Facebook)

14. “I remember waking up and realizing that there were two guys engaging in sexual acts with me.”

I was sexually assaulted by two of my friends in the dorms. I had been drinking and don’t remember how I got back to my room. I just remember waking up and realizing that there were two guys engaging in sexual acts with me at the same time. The next day one of the guys told me that I liked it. My friends also told me that I was drunk and I had been with one of the guys in the past so it wasn’t a big deal. I felt so alone and like I was at fault for what happened to me. It wasn’t until I read a blog about someone that had gone through the same situation that I realized how entirely wrong it really was. It took what happened to me to have my feminist awakening. I don’t think those guys think that what they did was wrong and I want to change that.
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15. “I realized it when I joined the U.S. Coast Guard.”

I realized it when I joined the U.S. Coast Guard. The male-to-female ratio is so vast that at 18 years old, I was stationed at a small boat station that hadn’t had a female crew member in two years. To say it was a “boys club” would be an understatement. I was treated so unfairly based on my gender, it still affects me daily. I knew then that equality between the sexes was not only needed, it was necessary.
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16. “I realized we almost exclusively learned about French men in literature, art, and music.”

I told my philosophy professor that I had studied French in high school and he asked me what I knew about Simone de Beauvoir. I had never heard of her. I then realized that we almost exclusively learned about French men in literature, art, and music and that most of Western canon is based on the male perspective. Once I started to ask why that was, that’s when I learned about the systemic oppression of the female sex and consequently, feminism.
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17. “As a high schooler I just thought double standards were a normal thing.”

I became a feminist after reading the book He’s a Stud, She’s a Slut, and 49 Other Double Standards Every Woman Should Know by Jessica Valenti. As a high schooler I just thought double standards were a normal thing we all had to deal with, but after reading this book I became fired up and wanted to make changes about all the unjust standards women have to face.
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Will Varner / BuzzFeed

18. “I was at a party and a close friend of mine was sexually assaulted.”

My feminist awakening was caused due to sexual harassment of my friends in which the harasser never was punished. I was at a party and a close friend of mine was sexually assaulted. It happened right in front of many people, including a few of my other close friends. I screamed and yelled and confronted the guy, and all that happened was that I was called a bitch.
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19. “Twitter has opened my eyes to feminism.”

When I read the #YesAllWomen tweets. Twitter has opened my eyes to feminism. Just this past weekend there was a big fight on Twitter between many kids at my high school talking about sexual abuse. The boys were saying the most awful things, and it really opened my eyes.
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20. “It was the comments that sparked my feminist awakening.”

When I was a senior in college, I started following a handful of celebrity gossip blogs. The blog posts themselves were often implicitly sexist but I might not have even realized that if not for the comment sections. It was the comments that sparked my feminist awakening. A lot of women who don’t consider themselves feminists like to say that they don’t see the need for feminism because they’ve never experienced sexual inequality. Presumably, they don’t think sexism really exists — at least not to an extent that should bother anyone. I would consider any such woman to go read the comments section on a gossip site and get back to me on whether sexism exists and should bother them.
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21. “Being in eating disorder recovery from anorexia.”

Being in eating disorder recovery from anorexia made me a feminist. I’ve met amazing, beautiful, and strong women. As I’ve become more confident in myself and comfortable in my own skin, I’ve realized that I can be strong, too. Some of the bravest and most intelligent people I know are women and I think all women deserve to feel equal to our male counterparts.
Madden29

22. “My feminist awakening has been about changing myself.”

The most enlightening moment was when I figured out “internalized misogyny.” I must’ve spent my entire high school career calling other women sluts or judging them for wearing “too much” makeup; you could’ve tattooed “I’m not like other girls, I’m one of the boys” on my forehead, just to save me the trouble of introducing myself that way to everyone I met. Everything I did had to be justified if it was feminine, and was some kind of triumph if it was masculine. Then I got older and I got into college and I took all these literary theory classes where we discussed gender performativity and queerness and feminist writing. I learned about rape culture and slut-shaming and realized I’d been doing it for basically my whole life. And I didn’t want to anymore. More than changing other people, my feminist awakening has been about changing myself.
–Jasmine Felicia Lane (Facebook)

If you’d like to be featured in similar BuzzFeed posts, feel free to follow the BuzzFeed Community on Facebook and Twitter.

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/krystieyandoli/powerful-stories-about-feminist-awakenings


41 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Wedding Day

You don’t have to wear heels — and your feet will thank you.

We asked the BuzzFeed Community, “What do you wish you knew before your wedding day?” Here are their sage words of wisdom.

Sheridan Watson for BuzzFeed / instagram.com

1. Choose bridesmaids VERY wisely.

Flickr: chrishutchins / Creative Commons

“Choose bridesmaids wisely. Pick those who know how to put up with YOU and you know how to put up with in intense situations. They could make the day more stressful or dramatic (alcohol, money, or lack of attention on them). I could not imagine my kids looking at my wedding album and not knowing a bridesmaid, a person who I thought was my closest of close friend. It is not worth the drama. Stick to sisters and childhood friends. I got lucky, but many friends did not.” —Submitted by Jillian Breska (via Facebook)

2. And you can totally let them pick out their own dresses!

Universal Pictures / Via perezhilton.tumblr.com

“Letting the bridesmaids pick out their own dresses is a decision I’m still very happy I made. They looked wonderful and there was no stress or grumbling over budgets. We made a lot of wedding party decisions based on that and it’s something I think more couples should keep in mind. No one needs a flask or another pair of earrings — cover half the cost of their hair or tux instead!” —Submitted by Kelsea Tooley (via Facebook)

3. Think about a day-of coordinator.

“Hire a day-of wedding coordinator! The discounts they can get you and referrals to good vendors will save you the cost of the coordinator, maybe more — plus having peace of mind on your big day, it’s so worth it. Don’t make your bridesmaids or family members run around trying to find people for pictures or call vendors that are late.” —Submitted by Erica Perry (via Facebook)

4. And the day of your wedding? YOU NEED TO EAT SOMETHING.

“EAT BREAKFAST! I was so busy rushing around the morning of my wedding that I didn’t eat anything. By the time I got to the reception at, oh, 5 o’clock, I was utterly famished, to the point of being lightheaded. And then every time I tried to take bite of dinner, somebody was tapping their glass with their fork to get my husband and me to kiss. I just wanted to eat my frickin’ food!” —Submitted by Sydney Riggs (via Facebook)

5. And definitely take some of your reception food to go for post-wedding leftovers! You did pay for them, after all.

E!

“Have someone (a bridesmaid?) make up a box of food from the reception to take to your hotel room… Neither of us ate anything at the reception, which made the next day pretty rough…” —Submitted by Alex Meyer Horn (via Facebook)

6. Werk your inner Gisele and practice posing.

“I would have practiced posing for our photos in the mirror. Ours turned out fine (and some of them were great), but I don’t like how I look in a lot of them and it could have been avoided if I’d practiced looking fierce and fabulous a bit more. Plus, my hair was a bit weird looking from certain angles, so I should have taken some posed shots after my hair and makeup trial (which BTW is a must!)” —Submitted by lizaa454311122

7. Doing a “first look” can help you feel more calm.

“See each other before the ceremony. For the love of all that is holy, if I had just gotten to hug my darling groom, we wouldn’t have been so racked with nerves and actually enjoyed the ceremony portion (and looked less pale and nervous in our pre-ceremony photos).” —Submitted by Heather Vickers Kwok (via Facebook)

8. Tell your photographer what you want in advance.

“Give the photographers a list of pictures you want beforehand. You won’t remember all the cute Pinterest ideas the day of the wedding.” —Submitted by Jessica Simpson Hatcher (via Facebook)

9. And don’t forget photos of the guests!

New Line Cinema

“I wish we had gotten more pictures of our guests. Our photographer is truly an artist and took some amazing artistic shots of the bridal party, but I wish she did a better job capturing the love and friendship of our guests. It’s only normal for a bride to want beautiful pictures of herself and her husband, but don’t forget about everyone else!” —Submitted by Jordan Juarez (via Facebook)

10. #SocialMedia is obviously a big deal, so figure out how to incorporate it — or not — into your wedding.

 

“Discuss sharing photos on social media BEFORE the wedding, and let your friends and family know whether or not it’s OK with you if they share, or if you would prefer that they don’t. I had a HUGE fight with my brother because I shared photos during the reception, and he thought it was an “unwritten rule” that the bride and groom share pictures when they are ready. In this day and age, with everyone posting to Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, think about it, and discuss ahead of time so there are no hard feelings after the fact.” —Submitted by Rebecca Carpenter (via Facebook)

11. And definitely try to hire a videographer. Wedding videos are the BEST.

Video available at: http://vimeo.com/111893116.

“Get a videographer! The day goes by so fast and you will forget the little things about the speeches and the ceremony. If it’s all on video, you can watch it again anytime you want! One thing I wish I had done with our wedding.” — ubmitted by Amy Stephenson (via Facebook)

12. Unless your theme is #VEGAS, try not to have TOO much fun.

Fox Searchlight Films / Via weheartit.com

“Only one glass of wine and champagne. I was having so much fun, I got hammered and wound up asleep by 9 p.m. Missed my after-party and someone stole a quarter of our wedding cards. I’m still married, it is still one of my top favorite days, and I had a blast. But seriously, two drinks only.” —Submitted by Shannon McLaughlin Hiller (via Facebook)

13. But that doesn’t mean you can’t loosen up a tad. Just stay hydrated!

“Have someone designated to make sure you always have a drink in your hand. You’re too busy to keep going to the bar.” —Submitted by Allicia Hayes (via Facebook)

14. If you’re throwing a reception, make sure you put enough time into thinking about the music.

“Skip the expensive flowers and spend the extra on a GOOD — like, really damn good — DJ. I cheaped out and got what I paid for. No good songs, nothing catered to the demographics, and he screwed up the bridesmaids’ entrance song.” —Submitted by Sunshine Then (via Facebook)

15. Wedding favors are not as important as you think they are.

 

“I would not have spent so much time on favors, because no one gives two shits about an artisan chocolate truffle in a hand-packed box tied with ribbon and a custom hand-cut leaf tied to it. Half of the people leave them. No one cares.” —Submitted by libbyh47c3bf161

16. You might think a facial is a great idea, but don’t get one right before your wedding!

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“NEVER get a facial close to — or on— your wedding day. This can cause redness, irritation, and horrible breakouts.” —Submitted by margaretd45ba0f88e

17. Unless you’re obsessed with Cake Boss, it’s OK to take it easy with the desserts.

“People will not eat nearly as much cake as the bakery will try to tell you. You, your mother, and new in-laws really don’t need to be eating cake for the next two months.” —Submitted by emilyz4ca7794b4

18. A winter wedding might sound swell to you now, but think about travel restrictions.

“Don’t book your wedding during an unpredictable weather season! We had to adapt our December wedding during the worst ice storm in Dallas history. Twenty-plus guests couldn’t make it due to dangerous road conditions and canceled flights!” —Submitted by Morgan West Comiskey (via Facebook)

19. And do your research on your wedding location.

Serious altitude sickness begins at 8,000 feet. I got married at 10,000. I live at sea level.” —Submitted by meghannf3

20. DIY is not for the faint of heart, y’all.

Warner Bros. / Via spaceandbeyond.tumblr.com

“I wish I’d known that DIY, although pretty and cost efficient, will essentially turn you into a twine-loving Lord Voldemort. You’ll become consumed by it, lose sight of reality, experience uncontrollable rage, and form an unhealthy obsession with The Chosen One (oh, hey, Martha).” —Submitted by whatjanedid

21. Really think about when you should have the rehearsal dinner.

“I wish I scheduled our rehearsal for later in the evening or on a different day other than the night before the wedding. Traffic was a nightmare and everyone was late and stressed. AND I wasn’t able to get over to our reception hall that night and so many things didn’t get put out (signs I stressed over making, Mad Libs for our wedding guests to do, etc.). If I had be there the night before, I could have made sure things were done right!” —Submitted by tiffanyb25

22. Don’t get lazy with the first dance.

Oat Chaiyasith / oat-chaiyasith.com / Via ispwp.com

“The first dance feels really long if you just sway back and forth. Even if you don’t sign up for professional dance lessons, do a trial run or two and plan on a couple extra moves to help break it up and make things more interesting. Oh, and do a dip at the end — it makes for great photos :).” —Submitted by Drea Tudor (Janssen)

23. You don’t have to splurge on a wedding gown.

 

“Instead of the flashy wedding dress, find a $300–$500 gown and buy it in white. I did this and waited for a huge sale and ended up with a $60 dress worth $400. It was still beautiful, and with some tailoring, it can look as luxurious as the thousand-dollar gowns. Remember, you’ll want more money for the beginning of your marriage and having a house/car/baby. Look for deals anywhere you can.” —Submitted by munchymann

24. But don’t forget about your feet.

“I wish I would have worn flats or sandals!” —Submitted by hillarymariem

25. Your wedding earrings may look good in pictures, but they could also be a pain.

“This is minuscule, but still… I wish I had worn French hook- or lobster-claw-fastened earrings. I wore post earrings, and after about 150 hugs from everyone, I was actually bleeding from the neck where the post had poked me repeatedly and had a scab there for two weeks!” —Submitted by emilyg35

26. And corsets are going to do exactly what you think they’ll do.

Bravo / Via tmblr.co

“That the stays or boning whatever its called to keep your dress in shape means sitting down hurts a lot and you should only stand/lie down so you don’t feel like dying and sit half-naked waiting for someone to run to your house and bring you any dress in your closet

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/sheridanwatson/the-wedding-doctor-is-in


51 Tips To Start Getting In Shape From People Who Have Been There

Realistic advice that works for real people, from real people. No more crash diets and get-ripped-quick schemes.

We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us their best tips for getting in shape. Check out what they shared — inspiring and actionable ways to get in shape and love doing it.

Push your limits.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

1.

Be willing to try any workout class at least once, and recognize that your workout preferences may change with your fitness level. —katier4bba4c003

2.

Always be willing to push your limits. It may be scary — trust me, I know — but it is well worth it. I dreaded trying to run and do other types of workouts, but when I did I loved the results and stuck to it. Heck, it helped me lose 40 pounds so far! —natashac14

3.

I challenged myself, in pouring rain and snow, to run eight kilometers. If I did it, it would prove to me that I can do anything I set my mind to. I did it, and now I love running every day. —alvan

4.

Become comfortable with the feeling of being uncomfortable. You will be hungry, tired, sore, and sweaty. But true change doesn’t come unless you push yourself outside of your comfort zone. If you just accept the temporary discomfort for long-lasting results, it helps you get through. —jackayb

Join a gym or work with a trainer.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

5.

Girls, if you are too intimidated to do heavy compound exercises in the gym because you feel like you have no idea what you’re doing, one option is to make an investment and enroll in CrossFit for a couple of months before returning to a cheaper gym membership. You get one-on-one training from coaches to learn the proper form and technique of weightlifting for a bigger price — but it’s totally worth it! —kyrac480bf58ad

6.

Join a gym. Not just a chain, but a local gym with real people that have group fitness classes. DO those group fitness classes! And whatever you do, don’t stop. Start with one day a week. Then when you’re ready, try two. Then three, and so on. Don’t quit. —gnarwy

7.

Get a trainer. Learn what to do then fire them. —Janet Guerra

8.

Find a gym environment you feel comfortable in and set up a schedule and plan you can stick to. The personal trainers will love to help you achieve the goals that work with your body and fitness level. Trust me, it’s the best decision I’ve ever made in regards to fitness. Also, it’s good to get your fitness level evaluated so you know your current limits. —brittanyr4de56b426

Eat more mindfully.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

9.

Eating clean just means avoiding processed foods. Shop from the outside perimeter of the grocery store.reneed49e0b5534

10.

Replace unhealthy foods around the house with healthier choices. Normally have a bowl of ice cream after dinner? Have frozen blueberries instead. They’re delicious and much better for you. And have lots of healthy things that you can snack on when you feel the urge to binge. Everyone does it sometimes, but you can reduce the damage by making your snacks things that are good for you. —hazell49da6b9e2

11.

Food Network Magazine‘s weeknight cooking section has an awesome variety of meals with nutritional info. That was a huge help to me on my weight-loss journey. Now I’m down 80 pounds! —katier4bba4c003

12.

Meal prepping has helped me a bunch! I plan out all my breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks for the week, buy everything, cook it all, and pack it all up at the beginning of the week. Then I’m not tempted to just go for easy, not-so-healthy options, and I don’t have to worry about not having anything to eat at all! I also make sure to throw in some indulgences throughout the week, like if I’m absolutely craving some thin mints I only have one or two to satisfy the craving without ruining my week. —Melissa Nicole Kight

13.

Don’t focus on cutting food/calories out of your daily intake, but start to focus on putting good things into your body. I try to follow the 80/20 rule: 80% of the food you eat should benefit your body; “healthy” foods. Twenty percent is the amount of empty food you should have a day. Empty foods are foods that fill you up, but provide no nutritional value to your body whatsoever. —blakes4737c6dfa

Stay hydrated.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

14.

Quit drinking soda, coffee with sweetener, energy drinks, etc. Make water your go-to choice of beverage when you’re out to eat and at home. After I did this for two weeks, I had more energy, slept better, my skin cleared up, and I didn’t feel sluggish in the afternoons. Trust me, this is a small trick that makes a huge difference.peijaa

15.

I bought a water bottle that has a dial so I can keep track of how many full bottles I drink per day. I keep it with me at all times and try to drink five bottles a day. —Elena Michele

16.

My biggest saving grace has been to drink at least a gallon of water every day. Not only does my skin and effortless sleep schedule thank me, but doing this helps me to feel less bloated and recover from binge-eating episodes — which happen more frequently than I’d like to admit. Everyone always says to stay hydrated, but few actually do it! —Helen Bierko

Find fitness activities that you love.

Jenny Chang

17.

Always change it up. If you are getting bored with your exercise routine then find a new exercise that you enjoy doing and alternate. Getting sick of that same old salad for lunch? Find a new, healthy recipe that you will look forward to eating, and then when you are bored of eating that, find another! If you’re always keep changing it up to keep yourself interested then getting in shape won’t feel like a constant uphill battle and it just becomes habit.Rebecca Betts

18.

I am one of those people who can’t be bothered to work out unless I am enjoying the activity. Running? Haha, no. My advice is to find an activity or sport that you ACTUALLY enjoy for reasons other than fitness. I found boxing. I love it, so I am thrilled to go EVERY DAY and fitness is just a happy by-product of my fun. There are tons of classes and team sports out there. Find something you love. —Alyssa Kate Pierce

19.

Do something that you enjoy doing. I have been wanting to try freeletics but I don’t enjoy high-intensity workouts so I compromise the intensity. I still do my burpees, squats, and sit-ups followed by 20 minutes of biking. I love biking. Don’t force yourself into doing something intense (if you are not into it), instead listen to your body and challenge yourself to do something that you love, every day.citraischu

20.

I refuse to eat anything that isn’t delicious (it better be worth the calories) and I refuse to do exercise I hate (no running). I walk a lot and dance some, too. —francesjoys

21.

Do something fun and call it a workout. I go rock climbing all the time, sometimes I’ll go on a short hike, or ride a bike. The trick is to increase the actual workout you do incrementally. Maybe do a harder route, or do it faster. —jays4ed036bcf

Stick to it and make it a lifestyle.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

22.

Realize that what you see in the magazines, if it’s real, is the result of long, hard hours at the gym and absolutely no cheating on an incredibly specific diet. Not to mention weeks on weeks of training. Balance your daily food intake, eat clean (unprocessed) foods, and exercise to the point of feeling uncomfortable four to six times per week. The rest will happen on its own. Dedication and moderation.briannel46a86785b

23.

Stick to it. No matter what. Getting into a daily routine can drastically change your mood, attitude, and, of course, your health. —sleepl3ss

24.

Make one small change at a time. For example, if you are a very sedentary person, suddenly going to the gym and working out seven times a week is tough to motivate yourself into doing. Start by adding an after-lunch walk to your routine, or cut out the sugar in your coffee and build from there. Smaller changes are easier to incorporate in your lifestyle and you won’t lose the motivation.thatlittlelightbulb

25.

From someone who’s lost a significant amount of weight: There is no magic pill, diet, exercise, tips, or tricks that will make you lose weight. YOU are the only thing in your way. It is not in any way fun, hassle-free, and definitely not easy. It’s a full-time commitment, a complete lifestyle and mind change. But after all the struggle and time, it does get easier. And the way you feel about yourself makes up for everything. No one ever promised it’d be easy — they promised it’d be worth it. —Caitlin Barlow

26.

Don’t set your expectations too high — you’re not miraculously going to get those abs or better muscle definition in a few days or even weeks; you need to work for it.ravenbard

27.

Becoming healthy and fit isn’t something that happens overnight or from a gimmicky, fad six-week diet. It is a journey and a lifestyle you fall in love with when you find your “soulmate” workout and feel amazing from eating REAL food. Four years ago, I ate nothing but takeout, didn’t know a thing about nutrition, couldn’t cook, and never worked out in my life. I was miserable and obese as a result. I decided one day to start educating myself and making small changes (which snowballed) every day. Since, I’ve lost 80 pounds, and live for fitness and nutrition. I LOOK FORWARD to my workouts and CRAVE whole foods. It’s all about COMMITTING to yourself, making small changes every day, not being afraid to try new things, surrounding yourself with like-minded people, finding workouts you ENJOY that are sustainable for YOU, and THEN your new lifestyle will fall into place. There really isn’t a quick fix or easy way out. Make the decision, commit to it, and you will succeed. —ashleighj474ebc193

Consider strength training.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

28.

Short, intense bouts of weightlifting, every second day. Basically, a less intense version of the “Body for Life” workout technique. I am, however, incredibly good at putting on muscle so results may vary. MODERATION IN ALL THINGS! That is key. —Nancy Lorenz

29.

No matter if I’m doing aerobic training or strength training, the one exercise I do almost every time I work out is the deadlift.Samantha Fong

30.

Women: Seriously, start lifting weights. Heavy. Fucking. Weights. No more four-pound dumbbells and machine workouts. Squats, deadlifts, bench press, and all the other fun stuff in between. It is A LOT more fun than cardio, and I promise you that you won’t get bulky. —Butterkitten

31.

Compound movements like squats, deadlifts, cleans, and presses yield the quickest and most effective results. Lift heavy, lift often, and push yourself every time you step into the gym. Every increase in weight is a step forward. Five additional pounds is still five pounds, and an additional five pounds added every week for four weeks is 20 pounds more than week one. —brangieri

Set goals and track your progress.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

32.

Tracking food, exercise, and weight with the LoseIt app was the BEST thing I ever did. It helped me to realize I was eating close to twice the amount of calories I needed. And getting to add my exercises in made me motivated to work out so I could record them. Plus, nothing felt quite as good as watching the chart with my weight go down, down, down. I find I actually enjoy eating healthily and working out. It’s about lifestyle changes, not crash diets.nicolee407d98e0a

33.

I got an app — Argus — that tracks my steps. It’s free and I get a little rush from hitting my goal daily. I also set up a system to reward myself for every X pounds lost. The rewards are stupid things like markers or socks, but there are also some big items, like a new tattoo once I hit my goal weight. —francesjoys

34.

Write everything down. Record what you do and always try to lift more, run further, run faster next time. I wrote an app to help me do that in the gym. —Things a T-Rex does

35.

Be vocal about your goals — it makes you accountable. If you want to run a half marathon, tell people. They’ll inevitably ask about it and who wants to admit that they gave up? And the support you’ll receive will help push you towards success.susanrebeccah

36.

Set a concrete goal of something you want to accomplish, not just the vague idea of “getting fit.” Towards the end of college, I wanted to get in shape, so I picked a hiking trail to do with a friend after graduation. Whenever I would struggle with workouts, it was really helpful to think how the work I was doing would help me on the trail.audreyw4191fb5f5

Treat yourself.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

37.

Good headphones for the gym make a difference for me.Mashaya Sulser

38.

When you start working out, the music playlist can make all the difference. Sometimes, I’ll be plugging away on the elliptical, watching Scandal on my iPhone, and I feel like the minutes are going by so slow. If I flip on the music instead and some amazing, upbeat, kickass song comes on (or even something terrible that has a great beat), I just feel PUMPED. I have a few different workout playlists for different moods and I’ll tell you, they work great. —Kim Casey

39.

I’m a lazy girl that’s trying to get into fitness. What’s really gotten me into working out are the simple things like getting new, colorful workout gear to get in the mood. It’s like wearing a sexy bra under your clothes at work, but BETTER. —Daksha Córdova

40.

Remember to celebrate every little victory! Did you do five more minutes of running than the day before? Awesome! You took the stairs instead of the elevator? Great! Picked the healthier option even though you really wanted the bad-for-you one? Amazing! Celebrating all those little things really helps to stay motivated and so you aren’t always beating yourself up when you don’t see the immediate results that you wanted. —katceekay

41.

Treat yo’self to some new workout clothes. If you are anything like me, you’ll want to wear them STAT. —allisonelloyd

Fit exercise in.

Jenny Chang // BuzzFeed

42.

If you’re watching TV, do some core work during commercials (sit-ups, planks, Russian twists, etc). It keeps you active on your breaks and off days, and will also keep you from feeling *too* lazy! Small, simple steps along with your workout routine make a big difference! Give it 100%. —Daksha Córdova

43.

Walk everywhere. If you have to drive or take public transit, park far away or get off at the stop before/after your desired one so you can incorporate exercise into your daily routine. Educate yourself, and just try to find a rhythm that works best for you. It is important to understand that what someone else is doing might not work for you, and fad diets aren’t going to work or be healthy to upkeep in the long run. —jbradz

44.

I bought a workout mat and started doing a new YouTube exercise video every day at home. Some are short, doing a different one every day keeps it interesting, and I don’t have to go all the way to a gym. —Elena Michele

45.

Exercise any time you have available. Even if it’s five minutes — set your treadmill (or whatever) and by the time it goes by, you’ll be in the zone, and won’t want to stop. —alex ari

46.

Walk 30 minutes a day. It doesn’t have to be many miles eventually; you’ll work in a faster pace. Maybe plan a goal, like work your way to a mile and then two, whatever you want it to be. Walking will get you there! —Mannybr22

Stay positive and love yourself.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

47.

Love yourself as you are right now — lasting change cannot happen unless you take your blinders off and make peace with where you are right now. You are lovable and deserve love and deserve self-love no matter what.Amy Abrams

48.

The most important thing in fitness is keeping it positive — don’t start working out because you hate your body, because you’ll never be happy. If you start from “I like my body, but I feel better when I take care of myself,” you’ll feel better about every improvement you see and you won’t be as down on yourself when it takes more than one workout. —Valerie Hemminger

49.

Understand that how you look is secondary to how you feel. Where fat develops on your body is purely genetic, and if it doesn’t develop in a way that shows off your six-pack, you’ll only be able to get one through dangerous, unhealthy means. —Jason Gillis

50.

Never compare! Everyone is at different levels. Find what you love to do — that will make it 10 billion times more enjoyable and easier to stay on track! —amandamarie85

51.

Do it for you. Don’t get in shape only to impress somebody, whether it be that you’re envious of your BFF’s killer legs or a jerkface ex that ruined your self-esteem. Fitness should be an opportunity to appreciate and admire your own beauty without needing reassurance from those who’ve made you feel inferior. Sure, they can be your motivation to inflict insane jealousy, but looking and feeling good should be your own prerogative! Confidence is at the root of all fitness, and that comes from within.gabriellev450b7c435

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18 Stunning Aussie Bars That Are Perfect For Summer

Because summer is the season for day drinking.

We recently asked BuzzFeed Community to share with us their favourite bars to drink at in Australia during summer. Here are all the ones you need to visit ASAP.

1. North Gong Hotel, Wollongong, New South Wales

Recommended by Cathy Zillion (Facebook). The North Gong Hotel is one of the coolest places to be on a Sunday night. Drink until you forget that you have work in the morning.

2. 2KW, Adelaide, South Australia

From Shaun Crawford (Facebook). This bar certainly has the best views over Adelaide. An excellent place for Saturday afternoon cocktails on a hot summer weekend.

3. The Corner Hotel Rooftop, Richmond, Victoria

Suggested by Lisa Dodds (Facebook). This bar often hosts live music, which means you get to chill out on a warm rooftop, with cold beer, listening to great tunes. What’s not to love?

4. Ponyfish Island, Melbourne, Victoria

Suggested by Robert John (Facebook). What’s better than drinking cocktail jugs during the afternoon while surrounded by water?

5. Sweethearts, Potts Point, New South Wales

From Gyan Yankovich. Sweethearts is a great rooftop BBQ which offers an awesome array of cocktails and fresh summery drinks.

6. The Gallery, Adelaide, South Australia

From Michael Kay (Facebook). The Gallery is one of those venues that just oozes cool. With an extensive wine list, you can certainly spend hours chilling out here.

7. The Beresford Hotel, Surry Hills, New South Wales

From jordanm29. The Beresford is an epic place to while away an afternoon in a leafy courtyard with a bunch of cocktail jugs. Plus its so close to Oxford Street so it’s ideal for pre-drinks.

8. Rooftop Bar, Melbourne, Victoria

From Priscilla Delatorre (Facebook). This place has amazing cocktails and astro turf. Best part is that in summer, it becomes a rooftop cinema.

9. Sky Terrace, Sydney, New South Wales

From Mick James (Facebook). Sure, it’s a little on the pricey end of the spectrum but The Sky Terrace is the place you want to be at sunset, sipping on Moët and taking Instagram photos so everyone knows you were there.

10. The Vineyard, St. Kilda, Victoria

From brittanyg4eef8a39c. The Vineyard is an excellent restaurant, so it only makes sense that they have a kick-ass beer garden to go along with it.

11. Siglo Bar, Melbourne, Victoria

Suggested by harrisonf4360539ec. This rooftop bar is a pretty classy establishment, a great place to split a bottle of wine and a plate of antipasti.

12. The Bank Hotel, Newtown, New South Wales

From Tahlia Pritchard. A visit to The Bank isn’t complete without tasting their amazing Pimm’s jugs. It’s great place for pre drinks before a night out in Newtown.

13. Portsea Hotel, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria

Suggested by adame4b54323e7. This amazing beer garden has stunning views of the water and is the perfect place to spend a hot day.

14. Preachers, Hobart, Tasmania

From Gyan Yankovich. Preachers has reached peak hipster status by putting an old bus – complete with fairy lights – in their beer garden.

15. The Glenmore, Sydney, New South Wales

Suggested by Jenna Guillaume. A great place for after work drinks, The Glenmore has stunning views of Sydney Harbour and also has a retractible roof so you won’t be caught in the rain.

16. Jade Monkey, Adelaide, South Australia

Recommended by Sarah Hurler Howley (Facebook). The Jade Monkey is 100% better after its location change, as it now has a perfect outdoor section which lets you enjoy Adelaide’s scorching summers while sipping on a cold beverage.

17. Opera Bar, Sydney, New South Wales

From Catherine Aurora (Facebook). You can probably just tell from the photo what makes this bar so damn special. Enjoy stunning harbour, bridge and Opera House views while you sip on delicious cocktails and soak up the sun.

18. Hotel Brunswick, Brunswick Heads, Queensland

From Courtney Cork Edwards (Facebook). Queensland can get hot. This riverfront beer garden has heaps of shade to escape the heat while you down a cold one.

Cheers!

HBO / Via giphy.com

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Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/jemimaskelley/cocktail-jugs-all-afternoon