Exclusive interview with AnnaSophia Robb

Sucky emotions might rule our teenage years but all one needs do is a little soul searching, or wait…maybe just surfing to realize that sometimes, you just hafta get over it. AnnaSophia Robb, who plays one-armed surfer Bethany Hamilton in Soul Surfer (in theatres April 8), opened up to gURL on just how to get over ourselves — inspired by Bethany, of course:

“When I was a little girl I was so confident about my body it never even crossed my mind to be insecure. I was always in sports and stuff. But you get older and stuff starts to change, and all of a sudden you’re like, ‘Oh my God, where did this tummy come from?’ and ‘Why can’t I fit in my pants?’ and ‘Why are my boobs so small and everyone else’s seem to be so big?’ And while it’s just because they all wear push up bras (just kidding!), you realize everyone’s insecure about something.

But especially with Bethany’s story, who lost her arm and continued to surf, she doesn’t hide her disability or wear a prosthetic! She’s totally not afraid of it. She’s not insecure about it. That’s how she is. That’s just part of her story. And I think that it’s important if there is something you’re insecure about, that you don’t dwell on it. The huge things that you think are such a big deal, other people don’t even notice.

I went to France over the summer and I had just finished Soul Surfer and was in the best shape of my life. I changed my eating habits so that I was eating a ton of protein so I could gain a lot of muscle. Then I ate my way through Paris — as you’re supposed to — and I came back home and I didn’t fit in any of my pants. It was ridiculous. I looked like a completely different person.

Part of it is just getting a hold of yourself. So if weight’s an issue to you, then you should only do it for yourself. If you do it for somebody else you won’t be happy, but I didn’t like how I felt. I wanted to feel strong and in shape and powerful and to feel healthy and so I started working out more and I changed my diet so I wasn’t eating a whole bunch of fatty foods and sugar and stuff. And you know, my skin started to clear up and I felt like I had more energy. I did it for myself. I didn’t do it for anyone else. It’s totally normal to be bigger and thin out. It’s just how we’re made, so be happy with it.”