Sadie Robertson Huff reflects on unhealthy relationship with fitness: 'If I don’t get 20,000 steps I’d beat myself up'

Sadie Robertson Huff says that motherhood has changed her relationship with her body. (Photo: Getty Images)
Sadie Robertson Huff says that motherhood has changed her relationship with her body. (Photo: Getty Images) (Paul Archuleta via Getty Images)
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Sadie Robertson Huff has gained new perspective when it comes to her body after becoming a mother.

The 25-year-old talked all things fitness and body image in the latest episode of WOAH, That's Good Podcast with her personal trainers, and reflected on the difficulty of getting back into the gym after struggling with an eating disorder. The former Duck Dynasty star has been open about her struggles in the past, sharing that she was hyper-fixated on her appearance and the calories in all of her food. After having her daughter Honey, in May 2021, Huff has dedicated herself to forming a better relationship with her body.

"Coming out of that, I was scared of working out, because I was scared it was gonna suck me back into that hole again. Because to me, it was such a thing about appearance," she said. "I think that was something that I was just really hard on myself in and so when I worked out, I think I noticed my body more and so I was, like, scared of getting sucked into that."

Huff went on to explain what her relationship with fitness had looked like in the past and how she dangerously fed into it with activity trackers.

"I had the FitBit, and it’s like, the 10,000 steps. I was like, ‘I have to get 20,000 steps,’ and if I don’t get 20,000 steps I’d beat myself up about it and this whole thing. So I had to just get rid of that for a season," she explained. "I’m just gonna take away the FitBit. Even though I liked it and it was fun, I was like, OK, this is not healthy for me right now."

While she's come to accept her difficult journey with body image, Huff previously told Yahoo Life that she was pleasantly surprised when her pregnancy allowed her to embrace her body in new ways as it changed and grew, rather than critiquing it. As she's gotten settled into motherhood, Huff has found that her daughter continues to inspire her to stay on that path. She told her trainers that with their help, her "mindset shifted" when it comes to working out.

"It used to be about what I looked like, but it was not about that at all. It was really about what my body was capable of doing and how strong I was getting. And I told you this, whenever I came, I was like, I have two kind of goals. One of them is to do a pull-up, which I’m still working on … and the second thing was I want to be able to put Honey’s carseat in the car easily," Huff said. "The heavier she’s getting, I want to be able to do that with ease, and I could do it. I was like, this is awesome. All the things I was doing with Honey I was just, you know, I am young and I can keep up with it and I can get the carseat in the car, but it was more about, like, I want to do it with strength. I want to do this with ease. I want to be the best mom I can be and part of that, to me, looks like being healthy. So just that shift was so beautiful to be able to go in and it wasn’t about my appearance, it was really about the strength I was gaining."

Huff announced in early November that she's pregnant with her second child — another girl — with husband Christian. During this pregnancy, she feels more comfortable in her body and her relationship with exercise.

"Now, in the season I’m in, I just asked Christian for an Apple Watch for our anniversary, because I’m in a healthy place. I can do that and it would be a good thing for me. It’ll actually help me stay healthy and on track, especially during this pregnancy," she said. "I think sometimes you have to make decisions for the season you’re in because you have to be responsible for knowing your health and where you’re at and your mental state."

If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, call the National Eating Disorders Association hotline at 1-800-931-2237.

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