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Laura Burns is the founder of Radical Body Love and this month's Body Positive Superhero! Each month, we are highlighting the work of one of our heroes of the Body Positive Fitness community. Laura is a fierce, fat, feminist Yogi and the Fat Girls Hiking Ambassador for Houston. Read our full interview below.
Fat Liberation Activists!
Yoga after a long hike.
I set pretty loose goals for myself when it comes to fitness and movement. In yoga, I think about getting stronger in certain poses, and more focused and open in meditation. When hiking, I think about ease per mile - making it through hikes with gradually less exertion and stress on my body - before hiking longer or more challenging trails.
Ugh, poor 13 year old me! I was a mess of internalized fatphobia, anxiety, depression, bullying, and a desperate desire to be wanted. I hated my body because it was larger than the other kids'. I was a dancer and the largest one in my studio, which made me very self-conscious. I just wanted to be thin so that I could be accepted, loved, desired, and applauded - I thought making myself smaller was the only way.
Remembering the lessons I've learned through my yoga practice. That nothing lasts forever, and there's something to be learned from each and every experience. It helps me engage in the self-care practices that I've come to depend on to pull me out of my bad days.
My perfect student is someone who wants to explore their relationship with their body through the powerful intersection of yoga and body positivity. I love working with folks who have had negative body-image because of oppression, injury, or illness. My goal is to help people who, like me, want to honor their bodies as they are in this moment and stop waiting to live their lives.
I'm so excited to be hosting the My Courageous Heart Retreat, which will be my first yoga and self-care retreat! It's a weekend of community, yoga, hiking, body positivity, and fun in a secluded section of the piney woods in East Texas. The retreat is January 31st through February 2nd and registration is now open with accessible payment options.