Friday, August 26, 2016

PWO Grub

Something kinda boring but possibly important: what to eat after your workout?

For me, I'm usually only doing one workout per day, and I alternate lifting & running days, so I don't need to focus hard on immediate recovery. Plus, I typically do my workouts so that a normal meal happens shortly afterward; lift, then eat lunch; run, then eat supper. I have the occasional protein shake or bar as snacks or "tide me over" type meals, but not as PWO recovery. Normal food can do that, ya dig?

I don't really think it needs to be as complicated as much of the health/fitness world thinks. Especially when most of the supplement-happy advice comes from...the businesses that happen to sell said supplements. If you're doing two-a-days and intensely training for some BHAG, well, MAYBE you need to delve further into the details, if real food doesn't seem to be working.

But if you're just a normal person getting your 30-60 minutes per day at an enjoyable level (which is where MOST OF US SHOULD BE) then keep it simple: real food for real health.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Body Shaming: Never Ever Okay

Erin Brown is the kind of woman I want to be. So much of what she writes feels like a punch to the gut, a light shone on my dark past, and a warm bear hug - sometimes all at once. She is brilliant, articulate, and I will read anything she writes. I recommend you do the same.

Shaming someone based on assumptions we make from our perception of them does nothing at all to encourage healthy choices. That remains the same, regardless of the size of the person on whose body we are commenting. While we are not expected to know what someone is going through, we can offer compassion by not judging, not offering commentary and not making their appearance our business. 
To live in a world where women are regarded as people and not decoration, we need to stop making comments on other women’s appearance as though it is our right to do so. We’ll be doing each other a favor.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Avoiding the Ugly

I am sad to say this was pretty much my life for far too long:
Side effects from this one-size-fits all fad diet and brutal workout schedule may include guilt, shame, self-loathing, decreased self-esteem, spending obscene amounts of time working out and thinking about food, decreased energy levels, binge eating, obsessive habits, and other undesirable consequences.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

One Story, Among Many

How one woman got her mental shit together and learned to focus on her health, and enjoy fitness, not just try to "fix" her appearance.

Your triggers may differ, your process may differ, your end result can be the same.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Everything NAILED

This post covers everything I typically rant about in a thorough, well-written, non-profanity-filled*, manner:
An Introduction To Female Fitness as We Know It
When it comes to attaining a svelte, athletic, and powerful physique, while simply feeling confident and healthy, women have to overcome a massive barrage of mental and physical hurdles. Unfortunately, in today’s physical society, including our fitness industry, women and young females are incessantly pressured or shamed into feeling like they should work out, or diet, solely to change their appearance. That they should strive to become a smaller, skinnier, more ‘’feminine,’’ and subservient version of their current self. Though that may seem a bit rash, this is the harsh reality that we need to start facing in order to make a market difference for the future.
In women’s-focused fitness marketing, you will generally hear or see the words – “diet”, “shrink”, “lose”, “tone”, “sculpt”, “calories”, “detox”, etc. However, rarely do you hear/see the words “stronger” and “fitter”, “adding muscle”, and “gaining confidence”. 

*But it's still good, really:

Saturday, August 6, 2016

You Are Not In Competition With Your Past Self

Oh, beloved Neghar, how do you so eloquently speak to my very SOUL?

Used to. As if somehow my younger, once stronger self was in competition with my present self.
Used to. As if today I am less worthy and less of an athlete because I can’t do what I did in the past.
Used to is just another sneaky way in which my inner critic uses shame and unworthiness to spur some sort of misguided ambition.
But it doesn’t really work that way, does it? Shame doesn’t inspire us to work harder or smarter. It simply keeps us feeling small.
Quick read, go enjoy it:


THIS is why I get upset by fitspiration-type encouragement instructing me not to worry about comparing myself to others, but rather to my past self.

This is utter fucking bullshit.

My past self has done some amazing things that today's self is not capable of. And when I take in the highlights ONLY (the effortless 50k, the Boston-qualifying marathon, the 25 ring pull-ups, the 5-pounds-from-bodyweight bench press, the 265# deadlift, the 162 snatches in 5 minutes) I inconveniently forget the very important tidbit that all of these happened at very different times, NOT ALL AT ONCE.

The time of my BQ marathon, I probably could've deadlifted half my current max. The day I did 25x4 ring pulls, I wouldn't have been capable of 25k without massive struggle and pain. The day I killed All The Snatches, I hadn't run more than 3 miles in months.

But that's consistently FORGOTTEN when I look back. My internal voice never points this very important fact out to me. Ever.

So, basically, in her viewpoint...all I can do is fail, compared to my past.

Yet given constantly-changing circumstances in my training, my home, my job(s), my health, my mental state, why on earth do I think that I should continue to improve in ALL areas of my strength and NEVER see decreases? I am not actually Wonder Woman, despite all desire to the contrary. I am a normal human, who will progress, and regress, depending on countless factors, many of which are out of my control.

As long as I am doing my best effort with the body I have TODAY, then whatever I "used to" be capable of is irrelevant.

Here's the competition and comparison you (and I)  can & should choose: what does IDEAL you choose to do today?

Do that. Don't do what s/he would not. Don't judge yourself on the outcome, merely choose the process that Ideal You would choose.

Make only that effort.

Many tomorrows in the future, you will be able to look back and see that each day, you did what you wanted & needed to do, and you will find immense satisfaction in yourself. And again on that future day, you can choose to do what Ideal You would do THAT DAY, without judgment.

It's that simple.

And that hard.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Why Weight-Loss Programs Almost NEVER Work

Beth Clayton (formerly Wittig) is so very smart, so very real, and she writes SO beautifully. She writes directly to your soul.

May I just say something? You are probably an emotional eater, especially if you are reading this. I know because I’m an emotional eater. I know because most people I have ever come in to contact with are emotional eaters.
I’m here to tell you a secret…it has almost nothing to do with food.
You want to get real with emotional eating? It’s time to get real with your life. It’s time to get real with how you communicate with yourself. There is nothing wrong with you. You’re not broken. Maybe, just maybe, it’s time to look inward instead of outward. Emotions don’t have to be “bad”, even the painful ones, even the uncomfortable ones. They are sign posts. You just need to start to read their language.
Read it all: