Imagine If It Was Really About Health

If it really were about health, what would be different?

Dances With Fat

Ask QuestionsI was pondering today what might happen if everybody who said that they cared about health (and not just about body size) really did care about health (and not just body size)? Health is multifaceted and not entirely within our control, the definition can be completely arbitrary and nobody is obligated to prioritize health, and it is definitely not a barometer of worthiness.  But since there is a virtually inescapable national dialog around the subject, there are some things that I wonder about it.

What if we stopped conflating the two separate concepts of weight (and the body size that a culture happens to value aesthetically) and health (the way that bodies actually work in terms of metabolic health, strength, stamina and flexibility that is complicated and not entirely within our control)?  What if the conversation about health was actually about public health and not public thinness?

How would the…

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the HAES® files: The HAES Paradigm in a Weight-Centric Sport—Is that an oxymoron?

Wonderful article on HAES & weight based sports.

Health At Every Size® Blog

by Michelle Pitman, Certified Personal Trainer

JudoAs I write this article, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has named Tokyo the host city to the 2020 Olympics and also announced the return of wrestling as part of the 2020 Olympic program (it had been removed after London 2012). The mere mention of athletic events, particularly the Olympics, ignites something in me. I’m reminded of my former life as a competitive athlete: the ups, the downs and the choices I made that had me continually beating my body into submission.

My sport was judo, a martial art and competitive event with weight divisions used to classify athletes into categories where there is an even playing field amongst the competitors. Judo (translation: The Gentle Way), along with other martial arts, is often considered more than just a sport. It is a way of life that not only builds strength but self-discipline, patience…

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Avoiding Candy Orgies and Food Hangovers

copyright 2013 Gloria Quinn

copyright 2013 Gloria Quinn

Have you started thinking about the holidays yet? And the food…?

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Lovely fall is here! Where I live in Northern California, we get a little bit of the changing of seasons with the temperatures dropping and possible torrential rains plastering us. But many days it is beautiful and sunny among the evergreens.

Mendo fog

Our 8 year old daughter, started a new school this year and is adjusting well to the larger setting and new routines. She loves having more opportunities for enrichment and more kids to play with.

With the school year well underway, I’m reminded how soon the “holydays” will be here with their full array of glitz, stress and temptation. Have you noticed how early the commercial zones start decorating now? Drives me bonkers to see Christmas stuff before Thanksgiving and Halloween decorations in Aug/Sept. Ugh.  But, that isn’t my point!

Starting with the candy orgy of Halloween, on to the over-stuffed Thanksgiving celebration and Christmas parties galore, it’s quite common for people to gain weight and feel guilty about it. (Oh, I forgot the New Year’s bashes!) pumpkin field

I’ll let you in on a little secret: Whether you gain holiday weight or not doesn’t matter to me.

Seriously.

What does matter to me are the emotions you’ll feel if you over-do (anything) during the celebrations. During the holiday stretch do you ever feel,

  • Guilt?
  • Shame?celebrate-2
  • Remorse?
  • Reget?

How ya feelin’ now?!

Well, cheer up because it doesn’t have to be that way. Instead you can…

  • Enjoy!
  • Indulge!
  • Be mindful &
  • Intentional!
  • Peaceful & Joyful!

…all at the same time without any of that yucky Guilt & Co.

Yes, you can socialize at the parties & gatherings, eat tasty treats and not have a forty- lash FOOD HANGOVER the next day.

What it takes is some prep work (not in the kitchen!), some practice and some support.

We’ve got all that over in our new FB community group—The Brain/Body Experiment. Come play, join a 21 day challenge & bring a friend! It’s calorie free (not that we are counting, really). Oh yeah, it’s $ free, too.

To your food enjoyment!

Love,

Michelle

When a Nap Doesn’t Fix it…

947116_448607848562804_75781737_nRight now I’m feeling a little pride. Just a tiddle. You see, the past 24 hours a funk hit me all of a sudden. I was a big grump. Who knows what set it off? Continuous lack of sleep ? Lack of exercise– other than moving and unpacking boxes? Over stimulation with coffee and social situations? Whatever it was, a nap didn’t fix it.

Actually, I’m still in this funk to a degree and I’m still feeling proud. I’ve used food to change my bio-chemistry all my adult life. Everyone does it on some level, some are just more conscious of it than others.  Food is medicine, after all. Because I have struggled with biologically induced depression/anxiety for many years, comfort food that lifts my mood has been a constant in my life. (Bear claw pastries, coffee ice-cream, anything sweet & yeasty—yum!)

Don’t worry, this isn’t a lecture on the evils of sugar (that comes later, lol!).

So just now I mindfully ate a delicious shrimp stir-fry. No, it wasn’t homemade, and yes, it had a sweet soy sauce (What is not to love about a sweet chili sauces?). It also consisted of lovely vegetables. As I write this I wish I had more.

Before I made the stir-fry I was thinking: I’m hungry. I’m grumpy. Sugar! I could eat those Honey Nut Cheerios…is that what I really want? [open freezer]No! Let’s have shrimp stir-fry. Mmmm.

I really do talk to myself this way!

Now the back story is that the night before—a few hours into this funk—I did eat that sweet cereal and it was a good choice. I had eaten a little bit slowly and mindfully. Plus, it meant I wasn’t eating the last chocolate pop tarts hidden in the cupboard. (Did he really think I wouldn’t find them?!)

Yes, I know, I deserve a medal for willpower!

Not.

Why? Because it didn’t entail as much willpower as it did listening to all my hungers crying out—or whining in this case…

And yes, we applaud these small wins at BraveGirl because they add up.

So throw a party next time you honor other parts of yourself besides the part that wants immediate numbed out escape. And have compassion on your pain. It’s real and needs some true love.

Here’s to feeding ALL your true hungers!

Love,

Michelle

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