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Posts tagged "Opinion"

The above article is an opinion piece by Deborah Dunham of Blisstree.com about running skirts. Suffice to say, she’s not a fan.

While these skirts have been around for at least the last four years, apparently, it’s becoming more of a trend to want to look stylish when we work out (Runner’s World even nicknamed such females as “stunners”. Get it? Stylish runners?) But to me, nothing could be more detesting than trying to look cute when it comes to running. I just couldn’t take myself seriously while donning a frilly skirt all covered with sparkles and shit. What’s even worse than the skirt itself (and I do get that some women swear these are totally comfortable), is the fact that they can create a sexist atmosphere on the road or at a race–places where women should be seen as athletes, not girly girls trying to look all adorable.

It’s insulting that she would insinuate anyone with a curveless physique would want to look any different. Also, when did running become all about body image and “hugging the right curves”? Can’t we just put all of that aside when we hit the road and embrace our bodies for what they do versus how they look? We’re not out there for others to gawk at. We’re out there to get shit done. And for me, that’s in a basic pair of black shorts and a tank.

Now, I understand where Deborah is coming from, and in a culture like the one we have it’s prudent to be hyper-sensitive to the sexualization of women. But while I agree that women shouldn’t be pressured to look a certain way, that sentiment goes both ways. I believe in freedom of expression. While running skirts might not be Deborah’s thing, I think it sets us backwards to judge a lady by her skirt. And as a self-described girly girl, who still loves to train hard, I find it insulting that someone would make assumptions and judgments about me based on what I wear. And if I wanna wear a running skirt, even a pink frilly, shiny and sparkly one, I don’t want to be worried about women like Deborah judging me for doing so.

What we choose to wear (or not wear) is a personal preference. Just as some women feel uncomfortable wearing makeup, certain clothes or jewelry, others use it as a means of personal expression. The decision to wear or not wear what we like is entirely up to us. No one should tell us how we feel most comfortable, especially other women. Now, if you’re forced to wear a skirt and don’t want to? Different story. But that’s not what this is about.

I feel most comfortable working out in as little as possible (bear in mind, 95% of the time it’s just me at home). However, the second I head out to the gym, I know that not covering up will spawn the glares of other women (not all, but some). I work very, VERY hard at not giving a shit about what other people think, but I also don’t want to be accused of attention seeking, or be taken less seriously by other women at the gym. The look: that LOOK. It makes me uncomfortable.

Interesting point: note the worry about WOMEN and not men. When it comes to men, they seem more impressed with my burpees & pullups than what I’m wearing. When it comes to women, those who would be more concerned about what I’m wearing as opposed to what I can do are projecting something on to me that has nothing to do with me. It could be insecurity, societal anger, maybe their own feelings of feeling judged. Whatever it is, it’s not my intent to bring it out of them, even if it has little to do with me. So while covering up is sometimes uncomfortable, it’s a small price to pay to get a smile rather than a sneer. (ugh, ladies).

When it comes to personal style, fashion, comfort, cuteness, bad assness or anything else that makes a woman feel good about herself when she’s working out: it’s a personal choice. Your workouts, like everything else you choose to present to the world, are your own and should be fun for you. I know women who won’t head to the gym without a little makeup and others who balk at the thought: I’d much rather they keep doing what they have to so that they’re comfortable and active. If the alternative is a woman who doesn’t feel 100% confident, then that’s contrary to what I try to endorse here. Hell, I wear mascara when I hit the gym and damn those who’d judge me. I feel awesome about it at the chin up bar.

And that’s the point: feeling comfortable and confident. I get a better workout on when I feel good about myself. Somedays that’s in my PJ’s and some days that’s in a sports bra and booty shorts. One day that could be in a running skirt. Anything that encourages women to be who they wanna be, makes them comfortable and inspires them to get sweaty (which new workouts clothes have been known to do), is just fine by me. I hate big baggy T-shirts when I workout, but I’d be a bitch and a half to EVER look down on someone who was more comfortable that way. We’re all different.

Just as we all have personal styles when we go to work, head out on a date and hang at home, there’s room for personal style in fitness. It is not a reflection of how hard someone’s working, or a reflection of their intentions (a skirt doesn’t mean you’re inviting people to sexualize you). If I feel more comfortable wearing a sports bra and booty shorts, I should be able to wear them without being accused of doing something other than making myself comfortable. And if wearing a pink frilly skirts while running is YOUR thing? Well let your pink frilly freak flag fly. That’s your style. If not, that’s just a reflection of your own personal style. It doesn’t make you a better person, or a better athlete. Don’t ever ask someone to dull their shine.

And don’t dull your shine for anyone else. :)

If you’ve been following along (and geez, some of you have been here since the very beginning) then you’ll know that I don’t follow a ‘one-size fits all’ plan when it comes to health & fitness. Yes, there are certain hardcore truths about some things: but they don’t mean squat (pun) unless you’re willing to sign up for them. What works for one person, might not work for another. We’ve all got different biologies, personalites, preferences, tastes, support systems, finances etc. How can one model work for all? It doesn’t.

It truly bothers me when health experts, trainers, nutritionists and others, completely ignore that we are each individuals FIRST. They ignore the ‘person’ part of personal health. And they judge. They judge harshly. And that judgement doesn’t help their cause: all it does it make people feel badly about themselves and less motivated to change.

Case in point: food guilt. I can’t tell you how many of you express food guilt to me in my ask. Guilt over drinking a soda, eating fries, going over your calorie limit. Bah, relax! Feeling guilty does nothing, it’s not pro-active and you know what? You shouldn’t EVER be bullied into doing something you don’t want to do. Yes, you CAN make healthier choices. But you know that, at least most of you do. You don’t need to be looked down upon when you slip, make a bad choice, or don’t know any better. Experts should be there to show you your options, give you tools to help you make better choices and provide you with information when you ask for it. NOT judge you for drinking a diet coke. You are a person, you deserve respect. And feeling judged does nothing but push people away from (not towards) healthy living.

My goal has been, and will continue to be, to provide you with information, tools, fun stuff that you may or may not connect with. If it works for you? Great! If not, well maybe the next batch of posts will. But I try my best not to judge you: I’m here to provide you with MY advice, tools & resources I think you might like, have discussions, learn from each OTHER and maybe start a dialogue about loving ourselves a little healthier. You’ll come to your own healthy place in your own way.

Which is why when I saw this post this morning, I couldn’t WAIT to share it with you. It kinda blew me away, and expresses all the sentiments I shared above. See the excerpt below, but PLEASE click on her blog to read the rest!

Plus, her fan page could use a boost. Can I count on you? Please like it (and find me too if you haven’t already!

Excerpt from Um…”Health” Experts?

Lately I’ve been kinda lack luster in the thoughts department but today something got me all riled up. I mean super duper riled up. It wasn’t the exact post per say but just the idea of “health” experts in general. Let’s see…how can I put it? How about this? I am sick and f*cking tired of all of these supposed health experts splashing their expert advice all over the internet with more of an interest in discrediting each other then in really helping those that they are supposed to be trying to help in the first freaking place. Oh and I believe those that they should be trying to help would be the average American. You know the ones…those that may be trying to eat healthier and exercise in a way to bring them to a healthy lifestyle but may not know how. Instead? All of these experts are so busy trying to prove all of the other experts wrong while winning the approval of other experts so they can wave the flag of “I’m so much f*cking smarter and better than all of the other people who think that they are smarter and better than the average American who we are supposed to be trying to help.”

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According to some people, what this girl is doing is racist.

Yeah, I know.

Listen, I’m not big on planking but I appreciate the sensation it’s become. It’s easy, silly, a little stupid & universal. But racist? Honestly, between this (and a few tragic deaths), how much controversy can a stupid little game generate?

It seems that bloggers & Twitter users are up in arms about the origins of ‘planking’, which some claim has its roots in the slave trade. Slaves were often stacked, or shackled, in ‘plank’ position while being shipped to various destinations.

Even celebrities are getting into the debate.

Rapper Xzibit tweeted:

#Planking was a way to transport slaves on ships during the slave trade, its not funny. Educate yourselves… Dont get it twisted. I care less where your dumb asses lay face down and take pictures of the shit, I’m just telling you where it came from.

So here’s the thing: lying face down is not specific to slaves and planking in it’s current form (lying down for fun and taking photos for the internet) should not be correlated to the treatment of slaves hundreds of years ago. To do so is disrespectful to those slaves and exploiting a current craze to play an unfair race card.

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Okay, I felt like a total insensitive asshole today.

Well, actually, Craig Ferguson made me feel like an asshole today. And he was right. I was being an asshole. To Charlie Sheen. And although he’s probably been an asshole to many a person in his day, I don’t know him and owe him an apology.

I love me a little crazy. Crazy people make the world go round. I’m crazy. Most of my friends are crazy. Crazy people go on limbs, are unpredictable, say the darndest things & take risks. They can make the boring suddenly interesting, make you think in different ways & are always good for a laugh, even when you don’t take them seriously. When I call people crazy, I say it with the utmost love. “Oh you. You’re so CRAZY.” Kisses.

Charlie Sheen has been my source of crazy for the last few weeks and I’ve been eating up every single bit of it. From his soundbites of gold (I can’t tell you how many times I’ve used the term Tiger Blood in the last 7 days), to his shameless self-promotion, to his (at times) refreshingly high opinion of himself, he’s seemingly unstoppable and keeping everyone glued. When he joined Twitter, I was as glued as I was when Kanye joined. I had to fight the urge to retweet every piece of comic gold. www.livingthesheendream.com has made it to my top ten almost every single day. I’ve re-blogged jokes at his expense and made him part of my Facebook status. And I laughed. I laughed friggin’ HARD at some of the things that came out of his mouth.

But here’s the thing: there’s crazy and then there’s mentally ill. It’s becoming increasingly obvious that Charlie isn’t crazy.

Craig Ferguson has a way of pointing out absurdity that’s both funny & poignant. A few days ago, he devoted a small bit of time to discussing Charlie. He did not use the term ‘Tiger Blood’, or ‘Adonis DNA’ or use the word ‘Winning’ at all. He didn’t want to. He didn’t think it was appropriate.

And he has a point.

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This makes me sad. Sad, angry and disturbed enough to punch things.

I’ve got my opinions and I want to be very clear before I start that I do not think that being overweight makes you a bad parent. Hands down. Issues pertaining to the weight aside, in and of itself it has no bearing on your skills as a parent. We all do the best we can.

Disclaimer done. Now for my angry bit. I first heard this story awhile back, but haven’t been able to clarify my thoughts before. Read & share your thoughts on this story. (see video after the jump)

Donna Simpson is a lady & mom based out of New Jersey. She is on a mission to be fat. No, not a little chubby. Not even obese. I mean really, really huge. Her goal is to weigh one ton (1000lbs) and as far as she’s concerned, the bigger the better.

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