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One Diet That Will Help You Feel Better About Your Body

March 25, 2015
One Diet

Finally, a diet that will really work!

This was written as part of the Stronger In Seattle series that I am doing with New Day Northwest. Please watch the hysterical video, in which I do a plank on the coffee table, talking about this article. 

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Spring has sprung. Or, at least it’s springing. The Crocus are blooming, Tulips and Daffodils have sent up scouts to scour for nascent sunshine, and the magazines have exploded with a kaleidoscope of ways to tell us we’re too fat to be ready for summer. Certainly to be seen in a bathing suit.

Yup, summer is on its way, and we aren’t ready.

Fortunately, there are solutions. There are clothes you can buy that will hide your unworthy body parts. There is a diet you can go on to lose that unsightly fat. There is finally an exercise program that will make you look like a supermodel. There’s a pill you can take to change your metabolism. And luckily for you, you have a friend who is selling a new product that will roll back the clock and put doctors out of business because it unlocks ancient secrets that can change your DNA and the establishment doesn’t want you to know about it, but your friend does.

I don’t buy it. And neither should you. Read more…

Sweat and Happy Thoughts Can’t Cure Depression

March 10, 2015
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Insert your own metaphor here, something about struggles and burdens and overcoming. Really, it’s my daughter, doing hard things.

I am a trainer. I train muscles, mostly. I am fortunate enough to have a couple hundred people who trust me with their bodies, and I take that very seriously. I approach it with the same “first do no harm” goal that a good doctor would.

We talk, obsessively, about injury prevention. About knowing, respecting and sometimes pushing your boundaries. We talk about the difference between being “in shape” (a term that is hopelessly entwined in the culture of body-shaming) and being “fit” (which means ready and able to do anything you want to do with your body, safely and functionally.)

But we talk about other stuff too. In the 3 years that we’ve owned a gym, I can safely say that every week I talk to our members about: divorce, love, shame, PTSD, body-shame, fear, death of loved ones, work / life balance, eating disorders, anxiety, severe depression, addiction, gender identity and why those big vibrators have 3 parts that vibrate and look like they go “somewhere.” Okay, the vibrator thing only happened one time, but some form of every single one of these subjects comes up every single week. I do a lot of listening. Read more…

The High Cost Of Being A Writer, Or Not.

February 19, 2015

10604019_10153245607905921_5344564216636904080_oWriters know how dangerous we are. Or how dangerous you think we are. We know that just knowing us has the risk of exposing you to the world, no matter the perspective from which you look at that sentence. We know the clear and present danger of our words on your perception of the world, and your perception of how the world perceives you. We know that you fear finding yourself or losing yourself or watching our words wash you of pretense, only to leave you under a microscope or a magnifying glass or alone in a mob unable to hide or be found. We know that knowing us feels like a risk.

We know.

We know what we risk.

We risk being a Typhoid Mary. Or metaphor Mary, or whatever it is that means you don’t want to connect with us. Or just that we know you’ll never see it the same way we do. Which is a different kind of being alone. That the connections and rhythms and haunting phrases are real only in our own “beautiful minds.”

We know we risk being alone, all the time. And that we are, anyway. Read more…

DIY Wedding On The Cheap & Awesome

February 19, 2015
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The whole scene, from behind the scenes

I kid you not, you can ask anyone who was there, Brady and my wedding was the most fun wedding ever. (Except, of course, your own, which I hope you had – or have – an even better time at.) Our goal with our wedding was simple: Have as much fun as is humanly possible. But we also wanted to do it on the cheap, because, well, why spend a ton of money on one event, when…..

Seriously, the average cost of a wedding in the US is more than $28,ooo. That’s insane. And a lot of it is spent on crap that lasts exactly one night, but gets paid for on credit for years to come (which would drive that cost up exponentially, because interest is an exponential multiplier that should be avoided at all, well, costs.) Read more…

Why I Really Want A Pete Carroll Jersey

January 20, 2015
This guy, right here, needs to be League MVP.

This guy, right here, needs to be League MVP.

Okay, I’ve gone on record as kinda hating the NFL. My relationship with the game, for the last 40+ years has been, “I don’t get it,” at best. I have gone on record complaining about the callous treatment of player’s bodies, the appalling treatment of cheerleaders, the offensive fact that the NFL is a non-profit, and the hero-worship of football players that allows them to get away with all sorts of illegal behavior because we cast them as demi-gods and their will is more important than laws or the rights of others, mostly women, who they act upon. Read more…

No Excuses, But A Lot Of Reasons

January 17, 2015

6packHere we go again. Yet another “no excuses” mom needs us to laud her 6-pack abs as she shames the rest of us for not looking like her. As a trainer, and a gym-owner, these things make me cringe. They are not inspirational, except that they inspire rage in me with an intensity that few other things can. They are amongst the most harmful things out there, if what we’re really trying to do is inspire people to be strong and healthy. And happy. Read more…

Jimmy Fallon, Nicole Kidman and the Trap of Tropes

January 8, 2015
Even the beautiful and famous people get totally tongue-tied when their loins are tingling.

Even the beautiful and famous people get totally tongue-tied when their loins are tingling.

Yes, I watched the video in which Jimmy Fallon found out, 10 years too-late, that Nicole Kidman mighta kinda sorta “like LIKED” him. And it was totally adorable. Probably because it triggered in most of us the memory of that feeling. The butterflies, the anticipation, the realization that something might happen. Even better, the reminder that even though some got away, many of us found something that is wonderful beyond our initial dreams, our crushes and unrequited romances…. And life just works.

And yes, it was totally adorable to see that people who “have it all” can, and still do, get totally tongue-tied….. At its core, that’s the baseline humanity stuff that unites us all. Hopes, dreams, love, lust, fear, reward, rejection, redemption….. Good stuff. But…. Read more…

CrossFit, Sports, Leaderboards and Gender Identity.

January 3, 2015
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The new leaderboards at Rocket, explained.

I really thought that the gym my husband and I own would be the one place where I wouldn’t fumble on gender politics and their surprising manifestations. I mean, I know they’re everywhere, but…  They pop up where you least expect them, even for those of us who have dedicated the lion’s share of our adult life to addressing them where they hide; everywhere from education to sex to athletics. I, personally, have used all the various skills that I have to help people understand not only the differences between sex, gender, sexual orientation and expression, but to also help people understand why it matters on a level of fundamental human rights.

Until a few days ago, I thought I was pretty solid in matching my actions to my words. Until, that is, some athletes earned spots on the leaderboard, but didn’t want to claim them, because the list on which they earned a spot did match their biology, but not their gender identity.

FUCK. Read more…

There’s No Such Thing as “Just” “Weightlifting.”

December 28, 2014
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Me, lifting things.

I hear it all the time. “Do you do weightlifting?” “Are there weightlifting competitions?” “Is weightlifting a sport?” Well, yes, sort of and kind of.

Or someone will tell me that So-and-So is a weightlifter, and I’ll ask what kind, and they’ll be all like, “I dunno, it’s all the same.”

Nope, it’s not. Kind of like all “ball” isn’t the same. There isn’t a sport of “weightlifting” any more than there’s a sport of “ball.” Read more…

Parenting Advice From The Mother Of The Year

December 8, 2014
Me and the daughter who might, when she's older, reflect back on the fact that I didn't totally suck at parenting.

Me and the daughter who might, when she’s older, reflect back on the fact that I didn’t totally suck at parenting.

One of the best things about being old, and mostly surviving my child-rearing years unscathed, is that I get to assure my friends with little kids that it will all be okay. I even get to mean it. And they listen to me, because I am clearly the awesomest mother ever, as evidenced by my 16 year-old who actually likes me, is a straight A student taking AP classes in her STEM High School, training for Nationals as a competitive weight-lifter and is a genuinely nice human. She is my living-breathing proof that I am an awesome mother. Which is why people ask my advice all the time.

“How did you…..” they ask. “Why did you…” they inquire. My answer is always the same. I finish my swallow of wine or beer or tequila or whatever, “I have no fucking idea why it worked.” Read more…

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