Archives for March 2012

The Flipside of Fitspiration

I have a small but growing collection of fitspiration pictures on Pinterest. Occasionally I find new stuff to pin, but honestly, I have an ambivalent attitude toward fitspiration – most pictures and quotes leave me either cold or annoy me for one reason or another.

Here’s a couple of examples of annoying fitspiration – and what I think is wrong with them.

ANY CHARACTER HERE
ANY CHARACTER HERE

Unless you puke, faint or die, keep going.” Yeah, that’s a great way to take care of yourself and avoid injuries. Frankly, I think the above fitspiration picture is targeted for teenage anorexics who use exercise as a form of punishment. I wouldn’t recommend that attitude toward exercise to anyone.

ANY CHARACTER HERE
ANY CHARACTER HERE

I like this picture a lot, but I still don’t feel inspired by it. Why? Most women who pose on fitspiration pictures are fitness models in their twenties. How much work would it require to gain and keep a body like that? Three hours a day?

Not a very realistic goal for anyone my age who has other things in her life than exercise. And  for many reasons, I wouldn’t look like that anyway. I want exercise to be an important part of my life, not dedicate my whole life to it.

ANY CHARACTER HERE
ANY CHARACTER HERE

Marion might actually be able to do that asana(?)! She might also be inspired about the picture, but to me it’s just such an impossible looking goal that it fails to inspire me at all. I’m more inspired by something I can actually almost do. Besides, I just gave up training for my military push up goal so I don’t feel inspired by a new “impossible goal”.

Maybe fitspiration is really meant for younger folks, and plumped up middle-aged women like me need their fitspiration more realistic? So I made a couple of my own fitspiration pictures. The second isn’t even about fitness, it’s about celebrating life.

Source: bodycapable.com via Satu on Pinterest

ANY CHARACTER HERE
ANY CHARACTER HERE

I added my favorite quote from James Levine: “Better to live on your feet than die on your seat“. It’s something that really inspires me from day to day. If I don’t move, I don’t feel alive.

Source: bodycapable.com via Satu on Pinterest

ANY CHARACTER HERE
ANY CHARACTER HERE

I made this one too. I purchased a stock photo, added some sparkles and a Geneen Roth quote from one of her books. I like my own inspiration picture a lot. 🙂 I’d like to be more able to live like that in my own life.

What kind of fitspiration inspires you the most?

Bat Wings and Body Issues

No photos, please!

A couple of weeks ago I bought a cheap pocket video camera. I shot this kind of “funny” video about diagnosing my flabby upper underarms (!) that I posted on my Finnish fitness blog. Big mistake!

Watching the video for a few times forced me to face my body issues – mostly how fat I’ve become. I also have bat wings, double chin, too much facial fat and my teeth could use fixing – and this was only the upper part of my body.

It seems to be okay to gain weight as long as you’re not forced to see yorself in too many photos (or videos) and if you somehow manage to avoid squeezing yourself in a tiny changing room to try on new clothes.

All are activities I’ve mostly managed to avoid lately.

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Well, maybe something good comes out of shooting that video. It might help me muster enough motivation to actually lose the extra weight I’ve gained in the last three years. So far part of me has stubbornly resisted the idea of getting to work. [Read more…]

Guilty of Taking Care of Yourself?

taking care of yourself

Guilty as charged!

Last Sunday I felt guilty of taking care of myself.

When I woke up last Sunday I wasn’t feeling that great. The muscles in my upper neck and shoulders were a bunched-up mess, and I felt worse and worse as hours went by. I finally realized I would get a full-blown migraine attack soon, so I popped a triptan to prevent it.

The medication worked but because I felt a little wonky afterwards (perhaps a side-effect of the medication?), I decided to take it easy for the rest of the day. I spent the rest of the day sitting on a sofa, munching on candy and watching a couple of movie rentals. (What a decadent way to spend  Sunday night!)

There’s nothing special about this story so far, except the fact that I felt guilty of not doing anything  useful with my time. [Read more…]

Are You An Emotional Dresser?

emotional dressingI’m procrastinating on writing the second part to the 2-part post “Two weight loss strategies that guarantee failure”, so I figured I’m going to write something light-hearted in the meantime. 🙂

I want to discuss some interesting stuff I found on the Internet  the other day.

Science Daily reviewed some recent research on a phenomenon I dubbed “emotional dressing”. Psychologist Karen Pine investigated the relationship between women’s emotional state and what clothing they choose to put on in the morning. [Read more…]

2 Weight Loss Strategies That Guarantee Failure

weight loss strategies

Skipping meals is a bad weight loss strategy.

Many popular weight loss strategies practically guarantee you will fail to lose weight in the long run.

The problem is, we often don’t have the faintest idea about the real reason we fail.  We blame lack of self-discipline, sugar addiction or even genes for our lack of success. But often a look at our daily eating habits would be enough to tell the real reason whe fail.

It goes without saying that I’ve tried these weight loss strategies myself more than once. It has taken me thirty years of haphazard attempts at weight management to learn these two simple truths.

#1: Skipping meals

A very popular way to fail at weight loss is going too long between meals, or skipping them entirely. I think this is the most popular weight loss strategy because it’s so easy to implement. Think of the following scenario: It’s noon already and you’re busy finishing a report so you think to yourself:

Well, I’ll  just skip lunch. I’m so busy I won’t even notice I haven’t eaten. What’s even better, that way I can easily cut some calories. Piece of cake! (sic)

This strategy always backfires – especially in the long run. Usually it backfires in a few hours. 🙂

Why skipping meals is  such a bad idea: The problem with skipping meals is that you get too hungry to be able to control your eating at all. When you get home, you will scarf down the most calorie-laden  treats you can find in your house. Moderation isn’t possible when you’re starving! [Read more…]