I Won’t Breathe Correctly

In my acting class a few weeks ago we were taught how to breathe correctly. Most people breathe into their chest and do not use the full capacity of their lungs. I take full breaths during Pilates, running, and weight lifting, but I cannot, and will not breathe like that when I’m not doing those things.

You are supposed to expand your stomach instead of your chest when you breathe. You have to try to breathe down as deep as you can. If I am not working out I feel like I’m not breathing at all when I do this. I cannot expand my stomach the way I am supposed to unless I am lying down or have a barbell in my hands.

I do not want anyone to see my stomach expand. I do not want to know how far I can make it expand. The Actor used to do a trick where he would make his stomach puff out really far and joke that he was pregnant (this was like 5 years ago when he was 16). That was fine for him, but I learned a long time ago to hold in your stomach and I just do that all the time without even thinking about it. I am not okay with the idea of my stomach expanding. Even though I have a fairly low body fat percentage and it’s dropping, I do not want to see it expand. I am not okay with that. I need to stay as small as possible. Even though I am fit and I am skinny and I know that my stomach expanding is because of air and not fat I am still not okay with that. I tried for a few weeks to breathe correctly. I really, really tried, because it is so much better for you than just breathing into your chest, but I cannot do it. I just cannot get over that barrier.

I may be pretty recovered. I may not eat as many calories as I should be eating, partially because we can’t afford all the food it would take for me to get to that point, and partially because I just don’t want to. I tried and got really close for a week but it still bothered me to know that I was eating what I was supposed to be eating instead of under. I’m fairly recovered. I don’t have terrible thoughts all the time like I used to, but I am not completely recovered. I will never be 100% recovered. I know I said I thought I was but I’ve realized lately that it’s true that there will always be a tiny part of me that’s disordered. And that’s okay.

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7 thoughts on “I Won’t Breathe Correctly

  1. I know about this way of breathing because my sister’s in musical theatre and choir, but I never liked doing it when I was a singer and actor because it just felt weird. And I totally get the stomach expansion thing. I hate it too. I think it really bothers me because of all the annoying ‘ab shots’ out there and my abs aren’t defined and it always makes me feel like my stomach is fat, even though I know different people have different bodies and even those with fairly low body fat percentages don’t always have defined abs.

  2. Same thing makes me anxious when i try to breathe like that. However my stomach is always fairly bloated and I think it may have to do with the fact that I am always so tense like that…So…. I’m working on it. I also can’t wear any sort of form fitting clothes without it just feeling…horrible.

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