As women, we’re used to hearing about fitness in terms of inches and dress sizes. We may know better, but we’re up against near-constant reminders and pressures to look good and take shortcuts to get there.
The truth is, being a healthy woman isn’t about getting on a scale or measuring your waistline—and we can’t afford to think that way. Instead, we need to start focusing on what matters–on how we feel, and how we feel about ourselves.
I started thinking about exercise as an investment in myself instead of a chore, and I started focusing on the example I wanted to set for my girls. My schedule was dominated by career and kids–not to mention a very busy husband–but thinking about exercise this way made it a priority, even if I had to get up earlier to do it.
That’s what being fit meant to me: feeling good inside and out, and taking control of my health.
Michelle Obama on fitness, health and investing in ourselves.
Fist pumps all around for this winner of an article! (You have no idea how hard I fought the urge to say ‘breast pumps’ instead).
I struggle sometimes in this industry where rapid weight loss is praised, rewarded and used as inspiration. I’ve just seen too many women brutalize their bodies into quick ‘results’ only to gain it all back and too many women give up on healthy habits when their 10lb goal isn’t hit in a week. Two friends of mine who’ve recently had babies couldn’t help but ‘apologize’ for their slightly bigger appearance when I saw them. As if being a new mom and adjusting to a new busy life was somehow a shitty excuse for why they weren’t back in their skinny jeans yet. What? I smacked ‘em. With love. :)
What happened to the ‘baby moon’? The period of time where you can just connect with the wee one, adjust to momhood and not have to worry about losing that weight?
Happy International Woman’s Day!
If you happen to have a paid holiday today, I think your boss is AWESOME. (for the fellas, it’s your holiday too! Feel free to fist pump just as loud as the rest of us. And we’re LOUD).
To celebrate this awesome occasion AND in the spirit of lady love, positive vibes, and kicking BODY LOVE butt, here are 5 things you should consider. Ideally, these would become everyday ways of being, but we all start somewhere!
1. NO BODY BASHING! Negative thinking and body hate be BANNED. That goes for your body, for ‘her’ body, for ‘their’ bodies. Catch yourself, flip a switch & reframe. ALL BODIES ARE BEAUTIFUL, including yours. Let’s take a day off the ‘I’m so fat’, 'I hate my thighs', ‘She’s too skinny' thinking and see how it feels, okay? Remember, little ladies learn to hate their bodies by watching/listening/reading/interpreting how we treat our own & each others. Pay a wee bit more attention to the messages your unintentionally putting out & taking in.
2. Find non-appearance-related ways to compliment your lady friends, co-workers & family. Women tend to focus TOO heavily on looks when it comes to sending compliments out. Yeah, we all LOVE being told we look great. But for today, let’s explore a little deeper, shall we? Focus on someone’s humor, grace, kindness, wit, strength, ability, attitude, candor, approach, confidence etc. Give ‘em a boost.
3. Reach out. If there’s a lady friend you haven’t spoken to in awhile, why not say hi? People tend to put their best face forward on sites like Facebook: you don’t really know what’s going on with someone unless you check in. A text, a quick message, a (gasp) phone call. SAY ‘HEY’.
4. Step out of your comfort zone! Do something nuts, uncharacteristic or something you’re scared of. Sometimes the BEST bits of us are the ones yet to be discovered. Take a risk & give yourself a pat on the back regardless. You might not realize you needed the confidence boost until you get one. (It can be small! For me, that meant fixing a shelf with an electric drill this morning. First time and I feel BAD ASS. Bring on the construction hat.).
5. Support other women around the world. First world lady problems are bad (body image, diversity, domestic abuse, objectification), but there’s a virtual genocide of women happening right now in many parts of the world. Get informed, spread the word, and take a look at ways you can help in the fight to bring basic human rights to women around the globe: http://www.hrw.org/category/topic/women
So many fantastic things in this skit. Highlights include the Catholic Church’s support of Viagra and NOT birth control (a boner: clearly, a need. Not getting pregnant? More of a want), one of the ALL MALE panelists quoting Joseph Stalin to make his point and this quote ‘let’s not sully the conversation on birth control with talk of lady parts’.
Via Raw Story
The Daily Show host Jon Stewart on Monday night took aim at Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA)’s all-male birth control hearing.
The hearing focused on the president’s new rule that private insurance plans pay for preventative care, which is to include contraceptives for women. Chairman Issa lined up a collection of religious experts who object to the rule as abridging their freedom of speech, even though the administration has exempted religious groups from having to pay for contraceptive coverage.
Featured front and center was an all-male panel of witnesses from the Catholic church, the Lutheran Church, a Jewish Rabbi, and a Southern Baptist ethics professor, among others, all of whom seemed to object to having insurance plans pay for contraceptives. Each man present said they felt that the requirement went too far and trampled on their religious beliefs.
“I don’t normally quote from Josef Stalin,” Rep. Tim Walberg said at the hearing, before Stewart abruptly cut off the clip.
“Ok, I’m going to stop you right there,” Stewart said. “We’re just going to move on to the next guy if that’s all right. Anyone have a slightly less hyperbolic take on this?”
He then played a clip of one of the witnesses saying that violating a person’s moral conscience was equivalent to a “rape of the soul.”
“No one loves their insurance plan, but soul rape?” Stewart remarked and noted that the Catholic Church offers health insurance plans that cover erectile dysfunction medication like Viagra.
“So the Catholic Church says a boner is a need, but not getting pregnant is more of a want.”
“Although, to be fair to Darrell Issa, at the hearing a woman was put forth on behalf of someone who needed contraception to help with a medical condition, and that speaker was denied a spot, because, you know, Stalin rape,” Stewart later added.
If you haven’t heard it yet, it’s actually rather sweet. :)
To celebrate the birth of his daughter Blue Ivy, Jay’s released the track ‘Glory’. In the song, he discusses past conceiving difficulties, including a miscarriage and false “starts”. But the tone of the song is clearly one of proud daddy LOVE. The sample includes a baby crying, which has been rumored to be Baby Blue herself.
At first, I kinda felt weird about a 2 day old being featured on a rap track, but I’ve been won over. It’s quite cute and very, very touching. Seems like Jay’s crazy excited and over the moon with his new baby.
via Jay Z’s website.
Life just got REALLY good.
Hello Hello Baby Blue!
We are happy to announce the arrival of our beautiful daughter, Blue Ivy Carter, born on Saturday, January 7, 2012.
Her birth was emotional and extremely peaceful, we are in heaven.
She was delivered naturally at a healthy 7 lbs and it was the best experience of both of our lives.
We are thankful to everyone for all your prayers, well wishes, love and support.
Beyoncé & JAY Z
Lyrics to ‘Glory’
The most amazing feeling I feel
Words can’t describe the feeling, for real
Maybe I paint the sky blue
My greatest creation was you: Glory
False alarms and false starts
All made better by the sound of your heart
All the pain of the last time
I prayed so hard it was the last time
Your mama said that you danced for her
Did you wiggle your hands for her?
Glory! Glory! Glory! Sorry..
Everything that I prayed for
God’s gift, I wish I would’ve prayed more
God makes no mistakes, I made a few
Rough sledding here and there, but I made it through
I wreak havoc on the world, get ready for part 2
A younger, smarter faster me
So a pinch of Hov, a whole glass of Bé
A recent post in the Journal Of Emergency Medicine has been grabbing headlines. A 59 year old woman had a breast fall out of position and get sucked into her body while she exhaled during a Pilates class. Freaked out yet?
Her ‘boob’ ended up lodged between her ribcage and lung. She’d had a recent heart surgery which had apparently left enough room for her implant to jiggle into the spot during her exercise. It helps to know it was an implant from a breast reconstruction following a mastectomy. Natural boobies rarely get sucked into the body.
From the sounds of it, this situation is incredibly rare, NOT typical, has nothing to do with her implants, and was resolved without much pain on her part. It’s also NOT a reason you should avoid Pilates.
Read more on Blisstree.
Via The Frisky
If fear of lung cancer or emphysema isn’t enough to make you quit smoking, do it for your nipples.
Apparently, nicotine and carbon monoxide restrict blood flow to various parts of the body … like your nipples. According to plastic surgeon, Anthony Youn, M. D., smokers who undergo breast surgery are at great risk for having their nipples “turn black and fall off.” They just die. Guh! Youn once tried to bring a patient’s purple (about to turn black) nipples back to life by placing leeches on them. “The leech drains the old blood, causing it to turn from unhealthy purple back to healthy pink. We place leeches intermittently until the body part grows new blood vessels to do the leeches’ work,” Youn recalled.
The image of this entire scenario is terrifying. [CNN]
A new study conducted by the University of Surrey suggests that messages contained in men’s magazines sound more like those coming out of the mouths of convicted rapists, than solid, lady-friendly man-advice.
The study took quotes from several men’s magazines and combined them with quotes from convicted rapists. They showed the list to participants and asked them to identify which were which. Not only could they NOT identify the quote sources reliably, but many were more inclined to agree with the statements made by rapists AND most found the quotes from the men’s magazines more derogatory in nature.
What’s terrifying to me, is that many of the messages or “quotes” they used are similar to those you’d hear in cases of victim blaming (in instances of rape, blaming the victim for ‘asking’ for it, instead of focusing on the acts of the rapist). Victim blaming is one of the reasons most (MOST) women don’t report their rapes, or feel hesitant talking to friends and family. And it’s not just men who mirror these sentiments… they’re used by women too.
Really, truly, scary stuff.
Hold the Midol! There’s more than just one way to manage PMS symptoms!
Had a few questions about how to manage cramps and PMS while maintaining a fitness routine. While you can use pain killers (and should see a doctor if you have VERY severe symptoms), there are other, easier options you should consider. With a shift towards more natural health remedies, more women are putting their pill popping on hold and going back to some tried and true remedies for dealing with their PMS symptoms. Making the switch can eliminate over medicating, save you money and find more permanent (and possibly better) solutions to your crampy-cramps and monthly headaches.
Plus, for those of you on a fitness/weightloss journey, these options will also help your overall results. :)
Remember, all bodies are different, so no one way or combination will work for everyone. But it’s worth it to give them a try, if not for your cramps, for your overall health.
(And right now, all the boys are going… uggghh…)
Top Three PMS Busters
1. Exercise has long been shown to reduce overall PMS symptoms. Though you may not feel like it (most women with significant PMS don’t) 15 minutes of stretching, crunches and/or walking can make a big difference in terms of your discomfort. Many yoga poses are perfect for instant cramp relief.
See Yoga For PMS video tutorial below.
The Diva Cup is a menstrual cup that you wear in lieu of tampons and/or pads. It’s reuseable, clear, eco-friendly, reliable, and once you get over the ‘I have to do WHAAT?’ aspect of it, chances are you’ll never go back to tampons or pads.
Considering the average woman could, in her lifetime, buy a new car with the amount of moola she spends on her period products, it’s also a pretty savvy investment.
Visit http://www.divacup.com/ for deets!
Thankfully, this doesn’t seem to be affecting too many people, but still. I’d rather it NOT be you.
This recall is limited to two product SKUs (carton codes), 15063 (18 count) and 15068 (36 count). The tampons were manufactured with a raw material contaminated with a bacterium, Enterobacter sakazakii, which may cause health risks, including vaginal infections, urinary tract infections (UTIs), pelvic inflammatory disease or infections that can be life-threatening. Women with serious existing illnesses, cancer or immune-compromised conditions, such as HIV, are at increased risk. There is limited evidence of transfer between individuals with this bacterium.
The impacted product includes both 18-count and 36-count packages of the Kotex Natural Balance* Security ® Unscented Tampons Regular Absorbency that were shipped to retail customers between October 29, 2011 and November 2, 2011 in specific Walmart stores in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico and Texas; specific Fry’s stores in Arizona; and specific Smith’s stores in Utah and Arizona. More information about the specific product SKUs and lot numbers are noted below. Not all stores in the above mentioned states were impacted. All impacted stores have been alerted to remove the recalled product SKUs from shelves. A listing of stores impacted and the latest information can also be found on the Kimberly-Clark website at www.kimberly-clark.com and the Kotex brand website at www.kotex.com.
Kotex Natural Balance* Security® Unscented Tampons Regular Absorbency Affected Lot Numbers:
Product SKU numbers 15063 and 15068 are the last five digits of the product’s barcode and can be found on the bottom of the package. Specific lot numbers can be found inside the red box located on the bottom of the package.
Kimberly-Clark Kotex Natural Balance* Security® Regular Unscented Tampons
Consumers should contact a physician immediately if they have used the impacted Kotex Natural Balance* Security® Unscented Tampons Regular Absorbency product and experience unusual vaginal discharge, rash, fever, headache, vomiting or abdominal pains, particularly if they are HIV positive, have AIDS, cancer, an existing serious illness or may be pregnant.