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Category: Body Image

The Emotion You Need to Release to Create Lifelong Healthy Habits

Talk about a woman after our own body-loving hearts: Christa King is the CEO and founder of Fitlandia and 30 Days to Thriving, an online holistic fitness program that focuses on the four cornerstones of fitness: daily movement, nutritious choices, community support, and harnessing the power of your mind. After reaching her highest weight of 192, […]


Talk about a woman after our own body-loving hearts: Christa King is the CEO and founder of Fitlandia and 30 Days to Thriving, an online holistic fitness program that focuses on the four cornerstones of fitness: daily movement, nutritious choices, community support, and harnessing the power of your mind. After reaching her highest weight of 192, she hit a wall and was determined to crack her own code for a making a healthier lifestyle change. Leaving a successful 23-year career in hospitality behind, she became a certified hypnotherapist, life coach, and nutritional therapist. By putting these pieces together, she saw what was truly missing in the diet and fitness industry: a holistic approach that starts with strengthening the mind. Her signature Mind Zoning process helps people create new neural pathways in the brain to enable them to make a permanent lifestyle change. And today, we’re happy to have her sharing a post on how to release shame — and why it’s essential when it comes to losing weight and getting healthy.

The Real New Year’s Resolution: Releasing Shame

If you’re anything like me (and most women), by the time you’ve reached your 40s you’ve been a chronic dieter for two-thirds of your life. Possibly you’re on one right now; some form of restriction that has you wondering what happens after the diet? How can I possibly keep this up? While it’s a positive step to want to harness the power of intention for the New Year, the reality is 92 percent of us will fizzle out somewhere between three weeks to three months; leaving us to deal with the shame, guilt and frustration of yet another failed attempt. Holding onto these emotions only holds us into an unhealthy pattern we don’t want. So, let’s get you releasing shame so you can keep moving forward on your fitness journey with success!

First, I want to share the two main reasons we fall back into old patterns to help make this process easier. Then I’ll give you my favorite tips to making a healthy lifestyle stick.

The Reason Diets Fail

1. Physiological reliance on sugar, refined carbs and alcohol. You may have heard some buzz about ensuring you have enough good bacteria in your belly to outweigh the bad guys, but how does this play into failed diets? We know having the good bacteria helps boost immunity, repair tissue in the body, and even aids in absorbing nutrients. But we also must reduce the bad bacteria in the gut because these send messages to the brain to go get its required fuel source: sugar. This is primarily what’s driving your cravings — these bad bugs telling your brain that it’s hungry for sugar, refined carbs and alcohol.

Having that knowledge, you can start to appreciate the physiological cause of deep cravings and why the idea of willpower to overcome them simply doesn’t hold up.

2. Thought patterns in the brain. Okay, so now look back on your life and the eating patterns involved with celebration and sadness alike. For many of us, we had cake at our first birthday (and every year thereafter) or feasts during the holidays giving ourselves permission to overindulge. Maybe your parent gave you a sweet treat to soothe your physical pain, sadness or loneliness. Perhaps, when you’re in a really stressed state you reach for a treat to soothe those uncomfortable feelings.

Over time, our brains developed a thought-pattern or neural pathway that associates celebration and ease of discomfort with foods that hit that pleasure center in the brain so that we can feel safe.

When we eat highly processed foods or foods with loads of added sugars, our brain loves it because it fires up the reward center. In fact, serotonin, the feel-good hormone in our brains, is released when we eat these things. We feel good when we do it.

Think about thi —, when we get stressed, what do we want more than anything? To feel good again! Hence the cravings and a return to addictive cycles.

5 Tips to Release Shame and Create Lifelong Healthy Habits

When we hold onto shame, we hold onto our current state. You simply cannot begin to adopt the healthy lifestyle you desire without first letting go of the shame you’ve held on to regarding your past or present lifestyle. You deserve to have a fresh start.

By simply understanding there is a physiological and mental reason for your cravings, you can let go of the idea that you’re not good enough. In fact, your brain is working perfectly to help you feel protected. So, let that shame go!

The best part of all this … you can create new neural pathways in your brain to support healthy management of stressful times, as well as enjoying festive times without deprivation or overindulgence. Here are my top tips for creating new, healthy habits:

1. Adopt a meditation practice. It doesn’t have to be complex. Even five minutes per day can make a huge impact on your mental well-being. If you have a busy mind, try a guided meditation to support you.

2. Move every day. You don’t have to do an intense, one-hour CrossFit workout to reap the brain benefits of movement. Even a 30-minute brisk walk can have a big impact on generating those feel-good hormones in the brain.

3. Focus on good nutrition. Taking a break from sugar, refined carbs and alcohol, and incorporating more non-starchy vegetables is a fantastic way to starve the bad bacteria and allow the good to flourish, reducing the craving cycle. Find a holistic detox program to support you if the idea of trying this on your own seems daunting.

4. Connect with your tribe. Did you know you’re three times more likely to succeed at reaching and maintain your fitness goals when you’re connecting with others on the same path? Find those deep connections and rely on your tribe to support you when you need it most.

5. Create new, healthy thoughts. Give your brain a surge of positive thoughts to create new thought-patterns that will drive healthy habits. This mental programming is a powerful tool to help you recover from setbacks and keep moving forward on your journey!

Here’s to your health and vitality in the New Year! —Christa King



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‘YOUv2’ Workouts Focus on the Fun

I had a few different fitness setbacks pile up, so between a cranky achilles on one leg and an IT band flare-up on the other, followed by dental surgery and a cold … let’s just say I’m a little deconditioned and in need of a good beginner workout to get me back in the swing. […]


I had a few different fitness setbacks pile up, so between a cranky achilles on one leg and an IT band flare-up on the other, followed by dental surgery and a cold … let’s just say I’m a little deconditioned and in need of a good beginner workout to get me back in the swing.

And I found it! I’m not sure where I first saw it, but a video of trainer Leandro Carvalho (he’s the Brazil Butt Lift guy) having the time of his life with a room full of “real-sized” women had me seek out his new YOUv2 workout DVD set.

I ordered it and promptly popped the first disc into my DVD player.

OMG, fun! Seriously, I’m in love with this workout set.

It’s not a big, complicated “system” — you get two discs with six 30-minute workouts. They’re primarily cardio but a couple of them focus on bodyweight sculpting.

You get a guide that goes over each workout, a four-week journal for charting your goals, “daily vibe,” and inspiration, a calendar to keep track of your workouts (with a cute backside of motivational sayings), and a Keep It Super Simple Meal Guide that features some good-looking recipes and a weeklong sample meal plan.

These aren’t intense, hard-body workouts by any stretch but that’s not what I was looking for. I glanced down at my Fitbit and saw that my heart rate was at a respectable 150 bpm while in the cardio phase.

Leandro is motivating and cheerful without being condescending — something that often crops up in workouts meant for the less fit. The background exercisers, diverse in age, race, and size, are freaking delightful — none of them fit the typical workout DVD mold, and they all appear to be having a blast. The music has a bit of a Baby Boomer vibe with songs like Love Shack, Hit Me With Your Best Shot, and Let’s Get Loud.

Best thing about these workouts — I promise you can complete them all without any modifications. That alone is a huge motivator. In fact, the only background exerciser doing anything different is the woman wearing weighted gloves for a little more upper-body resistance.

The set is available on DVD through Beachbody and Amazon and is also offered through its Beachbody On Demand streaming channel, which is available on many platforms, including Roku and Amazon Fire. One little extra in the streaming version is that there are kid-focused workouts, featuring younger exercisers.

How do you get back into the swing of exercise after a setback? —Gail



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Sign Up for Fit Bottomed Reset: Our FREE 5-Day Email Course to Love Your Body and Your Life

Wanna feel strong? Confident? Expansive? Alive? via GIPHY Wish that you could get a new, fresh start on a healthy life that truly fulfilled you (and not just a life that you “should” be living)? via GIPHY What if we told you we can help you do that in just five days … and that […]


Wanna feel strong? Confident? Expansive? Alive?

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Wish that you could get a new, fresh start on a healthy life that truly fulfilled you (and not just a life that you “should” be living)?

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What if we told you we can help you do that in just five days … and that it’s totally free?

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Yep, that’s how we feel, too. Say hello to the new — and FREE — Five-Day Fit Bottomed Reset email course.

  • Embrace the right mindset to get healthy
  • Break through hidden blocks that have kept you from being your healthiest
  • Create lasting and lifelong healthy habits so that you never have to “diet” again
  • Feel strong and confident in your body
  • Build a life — and body — that you love, inside and out

We thank you in advance for joining us.

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And feel free to share this with your friends and loved ones so they can join you! We say the more the merrier when it comes to making the world a healthier, happier and more body positive place. —Jenn & Kristen



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7 Things You Can Do Today to Be an FBG

You know what it means to be a fit bottomed girl (or guy). You realize you were put on this planet to do more than worry about your weight. And you’re pretty damn aware that dieting really, truly, seriously doesn’t work. You get it. You get us. But maybe you’re still not sure about just what it […]


You know what it means to be a fit bottomed girl (or guy). You realize you were put on this planet to do more than worry about your weight. And you’re pretty damn aware that dieting really, truly, seriously doesn’t work.

You get it. You get us.

But maybe you’re still not sure about just what it is you need to do. Knowing all of this is great, but taking tangible steps toward a healthier, happier future?

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Yeah, that’s next level. And we’re sharing seven things you can do — today — to become an FBG. Some are simple, some might take you a little bit outside your comfort zone, but the one thing they have in common is that they’ll all help you become an even more awesome version of yourself.

Step 1: Find your why.

The real reasons most of us have for wanting to be fitter, leaner, and healthier rarely have much to do with how we look. Not that liking what we see in the mirror isn’t a factor — because it is! But the truth is that when you love who you are, and you make healthy choices stemming from a place of self love (i.e. I’m going to the 6 a.m. bootcamp because I want to be strong and have more energy, versus I have to go to the 6 a.m. bootcamp because I ate pizza and need to work off those calories, plus my thighs rub and deserve to be punished), guess what? You’re far more likely to actually like what you see in the mirror — regardless of how that reflection actually looks. Finding your why requires some digging, and maybe a big of journaling, but once you find it, get ready for your game to change.

Step 2: Figure out how you really want to feel.

Once you’ve got your why, drill down deeper and think about how you want to feel. How do you want to feel when you look in the mirror? When you wake up in the morning? When you meet friends for coffee? When you play with your kids? When you give a presentation at work? When you make love? Then dig deep into what it would take to feel that way, like more effort at the gym, a cleaner way of eating, a keener focus on your mental health. This will help you set goals — and that why you just came up with will help you stay on track as you work toward them.

Step 3: Show kindness … starting with yourself.

When a negative thought pops in, (like, “I’m not fit enough to even run around the block,” or “I have no self control around cookies,) ask yourself if you can see things differently. Maybe you’re not ready to run around the block yet, but what can you do — and how does that compare to what you could do when you tried it the first time? Perhaps you had more cookies today than you would’ve liked, but empower yourself with the knowledge that a new slate starts now — and you truly deserve the effort it takes to make better choices. It’s about progress, not perfection, and each small step you take, every seemingly tiny good choice you make, all add up to awesome results down the road.

Step 4: Then spread that message.

The more you notice — and change your thinking around — negative self-talk, the more you’ll notice it when it comes up with friends. Instead of joining in when your friends start discussing things they dislike about themselves, jump in with positivity. What do you admire about them? Think beyond physicality, too, because although we can fixate on that when we’re on a fitness journey, we all know that there’s a lot more to each of us than a body. Speaking up can be scary, but seeing your friends come around and learn to love their own perceived faults is worth working through a bit of fear. Trust us on this one.

Step 5: Honor — and listen to — your body.

It’s one thing to push yourself to your limits, but it’s another to ignore the messages your body is trying to send. Nutrition and fitness don’t have one-size-fits-all labels, so while the high-protein eating plan your friend who loves CrossFit is following might be perfect for her, know that it might not give you the energy you need. Some people do really well with a diet higher in healthy fats, some folks process carbs well. There are athletes who live for the next ultramarathon, and there are plenty of yogis who’ve found health and joy on their mats. Find the healthy foods — and the activities — you love, see how your body responds, and adjust accordingly.

Step 6: Befriend your fears.

If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you. After all, if the workouts or types of meals you’ve been sticking to for years aren’t giving you the results you want, why stick with them? It doesn’t mean you have to stop doing things you enjoy — because, hey, if you love long walks on the beach or your Saturday morning Vinyasa flow class, stick with it. But don’t avoid trying new things out of fear of the unknown. Join a knowledgeable, fit friend at the gym (or take a class or book a session with a personal trainer) and ask them to take you through the weight room if you’re intimidated. Unable to imagine more than a day or two without ice cream? Commit to nourishing yourself with whole, healthy foods for a few days — and enlist friends or a support group to help you stay accountable. And that leads us to …

Step 7: Surround yourself with support.

The people who love you want you to be healthy — but seeing a friend lose weight and become quite fit can bring up some tricky emotions, too. It’s important to have at least a couple of people in your corner when you’re committing to a healthier lifestyle for the long haul, not only because you’ll hit some obstacles as you get started, but also because, once you get near your goals, it can be easy to fall back into old habits and lose some of the progress you’ve made. The good news? This support doesn’t have to come from people you’re around in person — you can find it in loads of places.

And, sure, we’re a little biased, but we think the support and accountability found in our 10 in 4 Challenge private Facebook group (open to all members who have ever done the Challenge) is one of the best around. Everyone there is on the same page (no Facebook-y pun intended) — they’ve learned the value of meal prep and planning, they understand portion sizes, and they’re all enthusiastic about sharing what’s worked for them in case others find it helpful. Oh, and yes, Jenn, Dave, and I are all in there too, answering questions and offering guidance as needed. It’s a pretty sweet community to be a part of.

Looking for a place where everybody knows your name — and is right there with you on your healthy lifestyle journey? Join us in the next 10 in 4 Challenge! —Kristen



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What It’s Like to Be Able to Eat Just One Cookie

I really didn’t think my relationship with food was too screwed up in my 20s. Well, other than a few dalliances with trying to figure out just how few calories I could get away with eating (and obsessively tracking each bite) and subsisting for days at a time on steamed broccoli and Slim-Fast before breaking […]


I really didn’t think my relationship with food was too screwed up in my 20s. Well, other than a few dalliances with trying to figure out just how few calories I could get away with eating (and obsessively tracking each bite) and subsisting for days at a time on steamed broccoli and Slim-Fast before breaking down and binging on Doritos and Chips Ahoy, that is.

Pretty typical for a girl coming of age in the late 80s and 90s, right? It wasn’t much different than what I saw basically everyone around me doing. I sipped my Diet Coke, told my stomach to stop growling and spent a ton of time on the elliptical, because, hey, wasn’t that the true path to a bikini body?

Yeah, hindsight sure is 20/20.

I wasn’t entirely unaware of the fact that I was developing some less-than-ideal habits. I knew that I couldn’t open a sleeve of Thin Mints unless I had someone to share them with … because I would eat them until they were gone. So mostly, I just didn’t open them — until, you know, I couldn’t take it anymore and tore them apart, leaving nothing but crumbs in my wake. And then I’d beat myself up over having no willpower, which felt terrible (because GOLLY do I hate to be criticized, even my myself), so I’d just feel like the most hopeless failure imaginable. The shame spiral started there and worked its way into just about every other aspect of my life, because if I wasn’t a strong enough person to resist a the siren song of Girl Scout cookies, how could I expect to ever succeed at anything? And, also, NO WONDER people didn’t like me and I wonder what other things I’ll fail at in my future …

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Oh, right. I was in a loving relationship, had a whole group of wonderful friends and supportive family, and although I wasn’t exactly in my chosen field just yet, I was moving right up in my place of work (and, unbeknownst to me at the time, would soon move into a career in digital media that would fulfill my dreams and then some).

But it was really hard to see the good stuff, let alone feel grateful for it all, through that toxic haze of self-loathing.

Did I mention I was also coaching youth volleyball at the time? So as I was battling with my own sense of self worth, I was spending a few nights a week trying to drill the love yourself/appreciate-your-body-for-what-it-can-do message into the minds of young women. And no, I didn’t see the disconnect between being a champion of body image one minute and scowling at my stomach in the mirror the next.

I didn’t experience the kind of ah-ha moment that Jenn did, so I feel like every time I tell the story of how I truly came to embrace myself, perceived flaws and all, it’s a little different. There were just so many things that brought me here. And they’re all important.

However, I have to give a lot of credit to the sport of triathlon. The sport got me to really push my limits — and, as I did so, I really had no choice but to learn about nutrition from a place of curiosity rather than judgement. I knew how terrible I felt during my first half marathon (during which I refused to eat or drink anything but water because I wanted to lose weight, and therefore I bonked), and I knew I never wanted to experience that again. As I learned more about what my body actually required to compete and train, my unhealthy associations (hunger with shame, eating with guilt) began to subside.

They eased further as I surrounded myself with more and more people who loved to be active — and also really, really loved to eat. We celebrated long runs and races with meals together, and if there were feelings of having “earned it,” it wasn’t about burning off those calories. It was about sharing things we enjoyed with people we like while celebrating things we were proud of.

At this point in the story, my emotions around food itself were pretty well in check, but my weight and body image? Less so. And while I didn’t consider many foods truly off-limits, I still struggled with binging on foods I really loved but didn’t have often.

So, what happened to change that? More and more tiny steps, every single day. I worked hard to stop negative self-talk about my body. I said kind things to myself in the mirror. I became more vocal in social settings when someone would put themselves down or make a disparaging comment about looks or weight. (I also changed my method of birth control around this time, which I think was a factor in both my mental health and weight — but it was only one of many factors.) I treated myself like I would treat my best friend — not because I was desperate to lose weight, but simply because I knew I deserved unlimited compassion. We all do.

What do you know? Clothes began to fit better, and, when I finally decided to weigh myself, I was at a lower weight than I’d been in YEARS.  Mind you, that was without actually making weight-loss a priority like I had, ohhh, the entire rest of my life up to that point.

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I continued being kind to myself (encouraging others to do the same), and my body continued to respond.

And so did my brain. The more love and acceptance I showed myself — and the less judgment I showed myself when some of those craving-inducing foods appeared — the easier it was for me to have just a cookie, just a bite, or … believe it or not, even just say, “No thank you,” without feeling deprived or restricted or sad. It’s just me respecting my body and what I actually want in that moment.

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Nearly a decade older — and EVER so much wiser.

Now, I fully embrace the idea that I can eat what I want, when I want — but damn if it isn’t an incredible feeling to also know that I can choose to eat just a little bit of it if that’s what I want. Today is not my last shot at a cookie. When I have one, I enjoy the hell out of it. I don’t judge any feelings that might come up while I’m eating it. And when I’m done, I simply ask myself, “Are you satisfied?”

You already know what the answer nearly always is.

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I continue to be astonished at how quickly my body caught on once I wrapped my head around the idea of ditching all that judgment. From here on out, I’mma just leave the judging to Judy, because I’ve got nothing but love to give.

Well, love and support for other women working on their own weight-loss journeys in our 10-in-4 Challenge, and we’ll be kicking off another round in January so feel free to sign up now if you’re interested! —Kristen



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How I Gave Up the Dieting Struggle and Found Myself

“Can you imagine what would happen if the women of the world stopped being worried about the number on the scale?” That’s the single question that changed my life. Rocked me to my core. Was the initial kernel of an idea that led to our mission — and, quite frankly, made me feel like the […]


“Can you imagine what would happen if the women of the world stopped being worried about the number on the scale?”

That’s the single question that changed my life. Rocked me to my core. Was the initial kernel of an idea that led to our mission — and, quite frankly, made me feel like the biggest asshole on the planet.

At the time, I was 20-something, educated, holding a great job in a field I liked and was months away from getting married. I had it all going for me.  And yet there I was, sitting in the chair across from a registered dietitian who specialized in emotional eating and intuitive eating because I was miserable.

Turns out, the “healthy lifestyle” it looked like I was living … wasn’t healthy at all. At least not for me.

Sure, I was working out and eating healthy foods — but my mindset? Not healthy in the least. More tortured than anything. So torturous, in fact, that it lead me to seek out professional help. No one really knew it from the outside (in fact, I was at the time teaching seriously fun group exercise classes and working as a personal trainer off and on — side jobs I truly did love), but I was simply and utterly consumed with my weight, how many calories I ate, and how many calories I burned. I’d overexercise, over-restrict or try some new diet — and then end up binge eating and even hiding the evidence of it.

This happened over and over and over again. As you’d imagine, I put on weight — and began to turn to food to comfort myself. Which, of course, only fueled the self-hate more.

Thinking that there was something wrong with me and that I had no capacity for self-control, I spent years internalizing feelings of shame and guilt, which harbored a deep distrust of my body and myself.

The pressure from society to look a certain way coupled with working in the fitness industry where I had the mindset that I HAD to have a six-pack and see a certain number on the scale to truly be taken seriously weighed (no pun intended) heavily on my soul. I never thought I was enough — and I took extreme measures to try to fit into a box that simply wasn’t me.

Until finally, I couldn’t take it any more.

I was planing my wedding and realized that — unless I changed something fast — I was going to walk down the aisle on my wedding day, consumed with worry that my arms looked fat or that I was barely fitting into my dress. Clearly, this was not how I wanted one of the best days of my life to be.

I wanted freedom from the pressure. Freedom from the arbitrary rules I’d set for myself. Freedom to enjoy the moment — an incredibly important and love-filled day — to the fullest, without interruption, and with a full sense of self.

It wasn’t easy. I worked weekly with this registered dietitian (I am deeply grateful for her work and approach — especially considering this was back in 2007 when it wasn’t even on most of her colleagues’ radars) and, through lots of tears and honesty, began unraveling years of patterns of thoughts that had led me to that place of poor body image and poor self-esteem. The work to transition away from obsessive dieting to intuitive eating wasn’t easy — and in many ways it’s ongoing, as it’s a life-long practice — but, DUDE, was it worth it.

Like, so, so worth it. So worth it, in fact, that looking back, I’m now grateful for that struggle and experience.

Yes, I said grateful.

In addition to leading to the creation of Fit Bottomed Girls, my struggles actually served as a gateway to finding my true self, my passion and my voice. I learned to trust my body, love myself unconditionally, and take my power back from the number on the scale.

Plus, I had one hell of an awesome wedding day.

These days, my mental space isn’t taken up with counting calories or figuring out when I’m going to get to the gym to “burn off” the pizza I had last night. I eat the foods I love with zero guilt. I work out because it makes me feel good. I love myself healthy.

And, now, I even have the privilege of paying my experience forward: by letting all women know that they are more than the number on the scale and helping them to break through, too.

How would your life change if you gave up the struggle and just loved yourself? —Jenn



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The Real Reason Why Dieting Doesn’t Work

If you’ve been on this site any time at all, you know we’re not down with dieting or any form of strict deprivation to lose weight. (In fact, we wrote a book on it.) So, why is that exactly? Why are our collective panties in such a damn ruffle over dieting? via GIPHY Is it […]


If you’ve been on this site any time at all, you know we’re not down with dieting or any form of strict deprivation to lose weight. (In fact, we wrote a book on it.)

So, why is that exactly? Why are our collective panties in such a damn ruffle over dieting?

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Is it because diets mess with your metabolism?

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Is it because dieting usually cuts out a whole food group (or two) and leaves your body without enough nutrition and energy to feel great?

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How about the fact that dieting is actually called “weight cycling” and has been associated with an increased risk of weight gain and binge eating?

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Or that mainstream media and society puts all kinds of crazy pressure on us to look a certain way that’s totally unrealistic and dieting is seen as a totally normal — even hip and trendy — way to do it?

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Yep to all of that.

But, guys, that’s just the tip of the iceberg on why we have such a strong stance (and mission) against dieting. Because while all of the above is true and terrible, it’s what dieting does to your mind that really pisses us off.

Because, even though restrictive dieting works for NO ONE in the long term and we all know this (otherwise, there wouldn’t be a multi-billion dollar dieting industry out there, which keeps selling to us over and over again), when the average woman fails at a diet, she doesn’t think: Oh, man, THIS DIET SUCKS.

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Nope. She thinks: I suck.

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And she internalizes those feelings over and over again, every time she diets — and every time she diets, not only do the stakes get higher (I’m really going to do it this time!), but the fall is that much harder as well (What is wrong with me? I can’t do anything right.).

Because everyone around us is doing the same thing to lose weight, no one even realizes that they’re putting the blame and shame on themselves … when really, it’s dieting that doesn’t work. FOR ANYONE. We’re just making the same socially accepted bad decision time and time again. We’re not bad, and we’re not failures … we put our faith in the wrong place because that’s what everyone else was doing.

Many of us start this cycle as teenagers or even kids. So is it any wonder that by the time we reach adulthood, we feel as if we’re somehow broken and stuck? Like we have no way out of this on-again, off-again dieting roller coaster? We’ve said this time and time again, but it bears repeating: you weren’t put on this planet to obsessively worry about your weight or diet. You’re more than that.

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What’s more, it’s time that you took your power back. Because, ladies, y’all have better things to do with your time and energy.

And, that, our friends, is why we hate dieting.

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What’s been your experience with dieting? Can you make a vow — today — to never do it again? And if you’re looking for a way to get healthy without the diet, check this out. —Jenn



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What It Means (and What It Doesn’t) to Be a Fit Bottomed Girl

So you say you wanna live that sweet, healthy, fit bottomed life. via GIPHY But … do you know what that really means? Do you know what a fit bottomed girl (FBG) actually does? How she treats her dreams, her food, her body? via GIPHY It’s cool! It’s not like FBG is defined in Webster’s […]


So you say you wanna live that sweet, healthy, fit bottomed life.

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But … do you know what that really means? Do you know what a fit bottomed girl (FBG) actually does? How she treats her dreams, her food, her body?

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It’s cool! It’s not like FBG is defined in Webster’s Dictionary … yet, anyway. But it’s important to know that being part of our fit bottomed world actually has very little to do with the size, shape, or relative fitness of your bottom — or any other part of you, for that matter.

It’s more about attitude, because when you get yourself in the right mindset, the other things you’re looking for (weight loss, muscle tone, the ability to eat foods and live a life you really love) tend to come along with the package.

So, what would an FBG do?

She would:

  • be curious, not judgmental
  • focus on what she can add rather than subtract
  • love life with zero shame in her game
  • listen to and honor her hunger
  • respect her body
  • love herself — even her perceived faults
  • cut herself a break
  • trust her intuition
  • not take herself too seriously
  • laugh often
  • take time for herself
  • understand the importance of rest

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And she would not:

  • count calories
  • obsess about the number on the scale
  • engage in negative self talk
  • judge herself — or others
  • skip meals
  • see workouts as “work”
  • always be on the go
  • spend lots of long hours at the gym to compensate for food she’s eaten
  • restrict food for the purpose of weight loss
  • beat herself up for not adhering to any of the above, because each day is a new day and a new opportunity to grow

via GIPHY

Dikembe Mutombo is right — ain’t none of that allowed up in here.

Essentially, it all comes back to the idea that you can’t hate yourself healthy. When you start from a place of self-love, and you see the creation of healthy habits as a way to show yourself the love and respect you deserve rather than a way to punish your thighs for rubbing, it becomes easier to make choices that lead you down that better-for-you path.

Not totally following why we don’t consider weight loss, in and of itself, to be the best reason to embark on a healthy living journey? Remember: building a body that fits into a pair of skinny jeans can never change your life in the same way that building confidence and positive habits can. —Kristen



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10 Things I Wish I Knew About My Vagina When I Was Younger

I’m really lucky in that, when I was growing up, my mom was very open about all things “becoming a woman.” We talked about sex, she helped me figure out the whole pads and tampons thing, and I always felt like I could ask her anything about my body. It wasn’t until the other day, […]


I’m really lucky in that, when I was growing up, my mom was very open about all things “becoming a woman.” We talked about sex, she helped me figure out the whole pads and tampons thing, and I always felt like I could ask her anything about my body. It wasn’t until the other day, when I was talking about this article with a friend, that I realized just how lucky I was to have a mom that was, honestly, pretty enlightened and progressive about her body and wasn’t shy to pass that knowledge on to me (thanks, Mom!).

I felt like I got an early headstart on info that I think a lot of girls don’t get until they’re in college — or have read countless issues of Cosmo or sat through the “Vagina Monologues” and discussed with friends at length after. And the rest I learned, honestly, through my fertility issues.

And, really, vaginas are awesome for a lot of reasons. They’re pretty damn magical. But, even today, there’s a lot of misinformation out there, not to mention just, well, a lack of knowledge. Here are 10 things I wished I knew about my vagina when I was younger.

1. Discharge is normal and changes throughout your cycle.

This is a great read on what your discharge is trying to tell you. And while, definitely, if your discharge is, like, green or really dark and has an unusual odor for you, you may have something going on, having discharge in and of itself — and having it be different in consistency and amount throughout your cycle — is totally and absolutely normal. In fact, it can tell you A LOT about your cycle. (For more: check out these books.)

2. There are lots of options out there for dealing with your period.

Pads are easy to use. Tampons, once you get the hang of them (which, probably won’t happen on the first try), are awesome, too. And reusable menstrual cups? Another option once you conquer the tampon (and really convenient after you have kids). Basically, there’s a lot of different stuff out there for your period, and what you’ll need might differ quite a bit from what the other women you know needs — and, in fact, your needs might even change as you get older. Your period might be heavier or lighter at different stages of your life. (And, no, using a jumbo tampon won’t stretch you out.)

3. Same goes for birth control.

I took the pill for 10-plus years — and it was awesome in that it gave me control over my reproductive health. But? It did also affect me in some ways I wasn’t aware of until I was ready to have kids. Not saying I would have changed anything, but it would have been nice to have been aware this was a thing. And I wish I’d considered this more, too.

4. You’re not gonna smell like roses … and that’s fine.

It’s nothing to be embarrassed about. And it’s definitely not healthy to cover it up with fragrances or douche. One of Amy Schumer’s stand-up shows puts it hilariously perfectly (NSFW but see no. 3 and 4). Shower regularly; change your undies after workouts. It’s all good, girl.

5. You can call it whatever you want to call it.

The vagina has a lot of names — as long as what you call it (or your partner does) makes you feel good, use it. (And if it doesn’t, call it something else and request your partner does, too. It’s YOUR body after all.)

6. Do what you can to prevent UTIs and yeast infections.

Pee after sex and don’t stay in sweaty undies, running shorts or wet swimsuit bottoms for too long. And in case you do get a UTI, don’t delay in going to the doc and certainly don’t be embarrassed about it. They’re so common, but, holy hell, they hurt if you wait to get treatment.

7. It’s about more than just the vagina.

We’re focusing on the vagina in this article, but, really, it’s just one part of the whole awesome situation. And if you’re interested in having orgasms (which, um, you should be; they’re awesome), get acquainted with the whole area on your own so that you know what pleases you. (Here’s a cheat sheet.)

8. It changes all month long.

Just like discharge, the shape and angle of your cervix can change all cycle long due to hormones and how aroused you are. This can change everything from how putting a tampon in feels to sex. Amazing, right?!

9. What’s normal for one woman might not be normal for you.

Even if that woman is your mom or your sister! We’re all a little bit different — in a ton of ways. Vaginas look different, feel different, smell different — and it’s all okay That said, you know your body best, so when something feels offs, pay attention.

10. It deserves your love.

It’s amazing and does amazing things. Don’t let anybody tell you anything different.

via GIPHY

If you could go back in time, what would you tell yourself about your vagina? And if you’ve got a young girl in your life, don’t be shy in passing along some of the info in this post. We ladies gotta keep it real with each other!Jenn



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How to Ditch the All-or-Nothing Mentality

I remember the lure of the all-in mentality back in my pre-FBG yo-yo dieting days. It felt so good to be so motivated and committed. Like, this was it! This was the time I was truly going to make a change and never eat/always eat whatever food again. That day 1 feeling was almost intoxicating […]


I remember the lure of the all-in mentality back in my pre-FBG yo-yo dieting days. It felt so good to be so motivated and committed. Like, this was it! This was the time I was truly going to make a change and never eat/always eat whatever food again. That day 1 feeling was almost intoxicating — like I could change the world.

And then on day 2, it would fade a little. Day 3, I’d be obsessed with all the foods I couldn’t have or dreading the workout I had to do. By the end of the week, I’d be completely off my plan, in a downward spiral of overeating and feeling really, really shameful about it.

My thinking was never: What’s wrong with dieting? It was always: What’s wrong with me?

And each time I went back into the yo-yo, the day 1 high was higher and the day 7 low (if I even made it that long) was always lower. I came out of it each time with a little bit of my confidence chipped away, until eventually, my weight was the only thing I cared about. It was an obsession to control and change and manipulate.

It was a misguided attempt to love myself. It was an unconscious way to hate myself.

I was strongly gripped in the all-or-nothing mentality. AND IT SUCKED.

 

Nowadays, I think we can all agree that extreme diets based on deprivation don’t work. But, honestly, whenever you go on any “health kick” or “sugar-free detox,” or even when you’re just trying to make healthier choices, if you don’t have the right mindset, you can easily fall fully into all-or-nothing thinking. I know I did.

However, getting yourself into the right mindset isn’t impossible — I know, because I found my way there, and I’ve never looked back. And it’s not just me! We’ve helped hundreds of women overcome the same issues in our weight-loss with self love program. Here’s how you can get your mind right, too.

How to Ditch the All-or-Nothing Mentality

1. Find your why … your real why. We talk about this one a lot, and it’s with good reason: it might just be the one thing that will make the difference between you actually making change and just hoping you’ll make a change. When you get down to the root of why you want to be healthier/lose weight/etc. (and, believe me, it has nothing to do with a swimsuit or size), it resonates. (And it might actually lead you to not care about a silly number and help you to realize your true worth and value … )

2. Get mindful and trust your body. When I was in the yo-yo weight cycle, I ate and worked out because of all kinds of reasons — it was time, I “had” to, I felt fat — but none of them had a damn thing to do with what my body was telling me I actually needed. Once I slowed down, honored what my body needed (rest … a hug … peanut butter) and started paying attention to my hunger and fullness cues and honoring them above all else, it was hard for the all-or-nothing approach to survive. Our bodies are amazingly wise and intuitive. We just have to listen and trust them.

3. Replace instead of cutting out. What’s the first thought you have when you’re told you can’t have something? You want it, right? So instead of trying to take a bunch of unhealthy foods or habits out of your life, try replacing them with something healthier — ideally, something you genuinely like. And …

4. Remove good and bad labels. French fries aren’t bad. Eating fries doesn’t make you bad! But eating too many of them gives you a stomachache. Likewise, carrots aren’t intrinsically good, and snacking on celery because you think it’s a “good” food won’t make you a better person. Take the guilt — and the halo — off of foods. Instead, try to choose the healthful ones that make you feel good the majority of the time. (And then, when you do have French fries, enjoy them!)

5. See what else is going on. Having “problems” with food and exercise can actually be a blessing in disguise. In a lot of ways, it’s your unconscious self trying to tell you something — receiving that message allows you to go deeper into what that “something” is. Admittedly, that isn’t always fun — this process requires some self reflection and time getting real with yourself. But, it can lead to some huge breakthroughs in areas of your life that are lived off the scale (and, girl, a lot of your life is off the scale). Are you self sabotaging? Dealing with perfectionism? Do you not believe you deserve to be healthy and feel good? Are you avoiding something? What do you really need? (And — spoiler — it could be that you’re totally fine as you are and need to just love and embrace the amazing person you are RIGHT NOW.)

6. Remind yourself that you have the power to change. You know that day 1 feeling? You can have that every day if you focus on one itty bitty thing that you want to improve. Don’t try to change it all at once. Focus on one very doable thing, like, say, drinking more water or taking the stairs when you have the opportunity. Then do that thing until it no longer takes any willpower to do it. Then, do another one. And then another … and another … and another.

7. Practice self love every day. Forget the scale; put your focus on feeling good. What can you do today to show yourself unconditional self love? Do that. Starting today.

The all-or-nothing mentality hold can be so strong — especially if you’ve been in the pattern of thinking that way for years. But you can trust me — and our 10 in 4 Challenge grads — when we tell you life is SO much better on the other side!

Do you struggle with the all-or-nothing mindset? What will you do right now to improve it? Remember, baby steps! —Jenn



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Podcast Episode 30: Body-Positive Advocate Jessamyn Stanley

Credit: Christine Hewitt Looking for a new yogi to inspire you? In this episode we talk to the incredibly warm and wise Jessamyn Stanley who has so much to say about life on and off the mat. As the author of Every Body Yoga, Jessamyn’s mission is to help anyone and everyone feel confident enough […]


Credit: Christine Hewitt

Looking for a new yogi to inspire you? In this episode we talk to the incredibly warm and wise Jessamyn Stanley who has so much to say about life on and off the mat. As the author of Every Body Yoga, Jessamyn’s mission is to help anyone and everyone feel confident enough to try yoga. She says, “I wrote this for every fat person, every old person and every exceptionally short person. I wrote it for every person who is self-conscious about their body.”

In this very candid interview, Jessamyn tells us about her life as a social media star and how the story people see on Instagram doesn’t always reflect her real personal life. Seriously, this woman really knows how to drop some truth bombs!  

 

Podcast Episode 30 Highlights With Jessamyn Stanley

  • The first time she tried Bikram yoga and why she almost swore off all yoga after that “markedly awful” experience
  • Why she decided to give it another try and how it helped her with depression issues
  • Jessamyn’s hope for yoga to become more about personal development and not about competition with fellow yogis
  • How a fear of looking “stupid” holds way too many folks back from looking deeper into themselves
  • Her thoughts on nailing the perfect posture (which might surprise you)
  • The unique joys of a home yoga practice
  • Body acceptance and learning to appreciate every inch of yourself
  • Tips for selecting an appropriate class
  • Details about her upcoming program at 1440 Multiversity
  • How the stories in her book sometimes counter the image she has on Instagram
  • The power of positive feedback when teaching
  • “Upcycling” everyday household items into nifty yoga gear

Also in this episode, Jenn, Kristen and I each discuss our most memorable yoga experiences, the FBG Retreat at 1440 Multiversity and I get a little dark with my answers — again

Get the episode with Jessamyn Stanley here or below!

Get more info on our podcast here and be sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you never miss an episode!

Have you had a bad “first yoga” experience, too? What got you back on the mat? Tell us about it in the comments!Margo



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Everything You Need to Know About the FBG Retreat

How you heard that we’re hosting a two-night/three-day live FBG retreat in the beautiful California redwoods? True story! Have you also heard that right now through May 15 you can save 20 percent on registration* by using code “LOVE1440”? Another true story! What Is 1440 Multiversity? Haven’t heard of 1440 Multiversity? That’s cool. It’s new. And […]


How you heard that we’re hosting a two-night/three-day live FBG retreat in the beautiful California redwoods? True story!

Have you also heard that right now through May 15 you can save 20 percent on registration* by using code “LOVE1440”? Another true story!

What Is 1440 Multiversity?

Haven’t heard of 1440 Multiversity? That’s cool. It’s new. And awesome. (Like, we are in some very good company. Other people holding retreats this summer at 1440 include Elizabeth Gilbert, Jessamyn Stanley, and Sage Rountree, just to name a few!) Here’s what it’s all about:

Where Is 1440 Multiversity?

Here’s where it’s located (spoiler: near Santa Cruz!) and how to plan your stay:

What to Expect at the Fit Bottomed Girls’ Retreat

Whether you want to kick emotional eating, stop yo-yo dieting for real, lose a few pounds, or simply find your inner fit and healthy rock star (we know she’s in there!), come learn how to be a Fit Bottomed Girl inside and out with us (FBG Jenn and Kristen). We’ve led an internet revolution promoting positive body image and healthy living to millions of women throughout the world — and we can’t wait to do just that in a small group setting at 1440!

Through aha-moment-provoking presentations, powerful journaling exercises, engaging group discussions and fun workouts, this retreat will help you to tap into your inner power while you have a ton of fun with like-minded women and learn:

  • How to make peace with your body
  • Recipes for eating well and ditching all the diet drama
  • Workouts for awesome results in a short amount of time
  • Willpower-boosting tips
  • Healthy habits that stick
  • Join the supportive, fun-loving, and innovative community of FBGs and design a healthy life you don’t just like, but love living

When Is It?

The program is two nights (Friday-Sunday), August 11-13, 2017.

How Much Is It?

Tuition is $315, plus 2 nights all-inclusive accommodations priced separately here.

The Fit Bottomed Line

Basically, we’re going to have an AWESOMELY GOOD TIME while we bring out the best and healthiest version of you! Join usJenn & Kristen

*This limited-time offer applies to new bookings made between 12:01 am Pacific time on April 15th, 2017, and 11:59 pm Pacific time on May 15th, 2017, and does not include: Mindful Self-Compassion Intensive with Michelle Becker and Christopher Germer; Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification program with Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach; and Brave Magic with Elizabeth Gilbert and Cheryl Strayed.



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Smashing Stereotypes With Big Fit Girl

Louise Green is an award-winning body positive advocate, plus-size athlete and trainer, and author of the book, Big Fit Girl. We ADORE her. Which is why we are psyched to share this excerpt on “smashing stereotypes” from her book. Enjoy, FBGs! Smashing Stereotypes, by Louise Green I ran my first half-marathon in San Francisco. When […]


Louise Green is an award-winning body positive advocate, plus-size athlete and trainer, and author of the book, Big Fit Girl. We ADORE her. Which is why we are psyched to share this excerpt on “smashing stereotypes” from her book. Enjoy, FBGs!

Smashing Stereotypes, by Louise Green

I ran my first half-marathon in San Francisco. When I woke up on race day, my stomach was churning with both fear and excitement. Getting ready in front of the mirror that morning, I repeated my mantra: You are an athlete. You are a champion who has put in the training time. You belong here.

When we arrived at the race location and I caught my first glimpse of the start line for the 30th Annual Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon and 5k, I felt even more determined. This was the beginning of one of the most demanding days of my life, and I was filled with excitement and growing confidence. As I approached the desk to pick up my race package, I caught the eye of the young man behind the table. He asked my name and without hesitation reached for the 5k race package. He assumed I was participating in the (much) shorter race.

“I am here to run the half-marathon,” I said sharply. “Oh,” he said, quickly fumbling for my race package in the other box. I took my number and the event-branded race shirt that was three sizes too small and joined my husband.

This moment speaks volumes about how people perceive those of us with larger bodies and why many of us feel that we don’t fit in. My body size communicated to him that I was not physically capable of running the event’s longer race. This happens at most events I participate in: someone might make an out-of-line comment or show surprise or express an assumption about what my body is capable of. Athletes like me who fall outside of the athletic norm often feel we don’t fit in because we’ve been told, in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, that we don’t.

Changing our fitness experience means surrounding ourselves with positive influences and finding teams of people who leave stereotypes at the door. And because we seldom see athletes of size in our daily visual landscape, it’s up to you and me to change the perceptions out there.

There are a number of things we can all do to shatter stereotypes surrounding people of size and show society a new version of the plus-size woman:

1. Sign up for a 5k walk or run. Being seen participating in sporting events makes a powerful statement: plus-size does not mean inactive, unfit, or unhealthy. The more people like you and me are seen at such events, the more our participation will be perceived as normal.

2. Perhaps you have a bucket list but felt you needed to be thinner or more fit to do these things you’ve always wanted to do. Jump out of plane? Do an obstacle mud race? I always wanted to hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon — so I did! Today is a gift and tomorrow is not guaranteed, so start ticking off the boxes.

3. Don’t wait for someday — live your life on your terms today. Maybe going to the beach is something you’ve been waiting to do when you are thinner. Everyone deserves to swim and enjoy the beach. I love the saying, “If you have a body and you go to the beach, you have a beach body!” You can rock a bathing suit. Buy one that makes you feel good and then strut your stuff. There is more than one type of bathing suit body.

4. Wear what you want. Try something that is out of your comfort zone but that you’ve always wanted to wear: bold prints, fitted clothing, and horizontal stripes come to mind. Bodies of size do not need to be all covered up, draped in black, or restricted to plain clothing. Wear what makes you feel good.

5. Accept yourself. Abandoning diet culture and rocking the body you have shatters the stereotype that all big women are on a mission to become thin. And, in case you haven’t heard, you don’t have to be on that mission anymore.

There is a misconception that people like us are crying into our pillows every night wishing we could lose weight and find happiness. But your weight does not determine your happiness. Live your happiest life now, not when you are thinner.

Show yourself and the world that big girls rule their lives. —Louise Green

Excerpted from Big Fit Girl: Embrace the Body You Have by Louise Green. Published by Greystone Books, March 2017. Condensed and reproduced with permission of the publisher.



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We Just Made This List and It’s All Because of YOU

We don’t like to toot our own horn … but, guys, we were on this list from Greatist. I mean, right there, there’s Kristen and my name just a few spots up from His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Yes, you read that right. His Holiness the Dalai Lama. via GIPHY Besides being insanely honored and humbled […]


We don’t like to toot our own horn … but, guys, we were on this list from Greatist. I mean, right there, there’s Kristen and my name just a few spots up from His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Yes, you read that right. His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

via GIPHY

Besides being insanely honored and humbled (still, weeks later, we’re picking our jaws up and off the ground), we wanted to share this news with you because OMG, His Holiness the Dalai Lama(!), but also because just about everyone on the list embodied something that’s been a key pillar in our mission since day 1: body confidence.

Influencer after influencer on the list is a strong proponent of positive body image and taking care of yourself out of love — no crazy fad diets or extreme advice on there. And for that, we’re even more grateful for this list. The health tide is a changin’ and we are ALL of a part of it — His Holiness Dalai Lama, Oprah, Serena Williams, us and YOU!

So, thank you for that, from our fit bottomed hearts.

via GIPHY

And, if you’re looking to get more of your body-confident self lovin’ self on and love yourself fit with us, again we’d be so honored. And here are three ways we can work together … to lift up ourselves and lift up the world!

1. Come train with us live at our first FBG Retreat in Cali!

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That’s right! Mark your calendars and book your flights because Kristen and I are hosting our first FBG Retreat at 1440 Multiversity, an incredible new learning destination in California. This place is insanely gorgeous and we’re going to be leading a two-day immersion workshop that will help you to find and embrace your inner Fit Bottomed Girl.

lodge_1440MV_FBIG

Whether you want to kick emotional eating, stop yo-yo dieting for real, lose a few pounds or simply take a healthy getaway (you deserve it!), join us August 11-13 in the California redwoods. Get more details and sign up here!

2. Take the 10 in 4 Challenge.

challenge

The 10 in 4 Challenge has been SO successful and gotten such great results (read about them here!) that we’re offering the online program a number of times of year. Get on the wait list here so that you can join the next time it starts.

3. Fill your earholes with the FBGs and AMAZING guests.

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Can’t wait for the retreat or the next 10 in 4 Challenge because you need an FBG fix NOW? Get our podcast. It’s free. It’s inspiring. And new eps are released at least every other week with freakin’ incredible guests (Bob Harper … Jillian Michaels … Kathy Smith … Tony Horton … ) having real and authentic conversations that you do not want to miss.

Seriously, guys, THANK YOU. And come join us! —Jenn & Kristen



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What’s Your Why?

Our friend Rebecca Scritchfield has a new book out from Workman Publishing — Body Kindness: Transform Your Health from the Inside Out — and Never Say Diet Again — and it’s kind of everything. Because it’s all about changing your outside, by going inside. And not dieting. Which is obviously a message that we’re alll about. And today, for […]


Our friend Rebecca Scritchfield has a new book out from Workman Publishing — Body Kindness: Transform Your Health from the Inside Out — and Never Say Diet Again — and it’s kind of everything.

Body-Kindness-760

Because it’s all about changing your outside, by going inside. And not dieting. Which is obviously a message that we’re alll about. And today, for Love Yo’Self Week, we’re sharing an excerpt from Rebecca’s book on how and why you need to find your why to get healthy. It is so our jam.

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What’s Your Why?

When you embrace movement as a way of life, common barriers begin to melt away. Just like other areas of body kindness, the most important way to make a lifelong commitment to fitness is to focus on your Why. Once you’ve identified why exercise is important to you, then you can move on to the next two W’s: the What and the When. Imagine yourself 10 or 15 years from now.

What do you want to be able to enjoy in life, and what small changes can you make to see that through?

By integrating these future-oriented thoughts into your fitness plan, you are providing internal motivation to help you reach your goals.

I used to exercise to try to fit myself into some version of perfection that I hoped to see in the mirror — my idea of what a successful registered dietitian should look like in order to be worthy of a full roster of clients and a busy schedule. These days, the motivation behind my workouts is having the energy I need and honoring my commitment to sacred “me time” for movement.

Consider how you might translate a fitness to-do list into a fitness Why statement. Even if you proudly exercise regularly and wouldn’t dream of missing it, it’s worth asking “Why?” Your motivation should be positive, encouraging, and body loving (or at least body appreciating). The ultimate goal is to shift your inner dialogue away from exercising just to prevent fatness, to earn the right to eat dessert, or wear a crop top. You are more likely to form a solid connection with your body and develop a lifelong habit when you make movement meaningful and fun!

What’s your why, what and when? And be sure to head over to Fit Bottomed Zen to see another excerpt from this awesome book! —Rebecca Scritchfield



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4 Ways to Care for Yourself This Valentine’s Day

February is a month for cozy sweaters, hot chocolate, and of course, love. Valentine’s Day can be a sweet, charming holiday, but it also creates pressure to find a significant other, plan the perfect date night, impress your lover, etc. Yes, Valentine’s Day can be good fun, but it’s important to remember an obvious but […]


February is a month for cozy sweaters, hot chocolate, and of course, love. Valentine’s Day can be a sweet, charming holiday, but it also creates pressure to find a significant other, plan the perfect date night, impress your lover, etc. Yes, Valentine’s Day can be good fun, but it’s important to remember an obvious but often forgotten truth: Love is a daily practice that begins with yourself. Caring for yourself boosts your mood, confidence and sense of self-worth. Consequently, when you love yourself (remember: it’s Love Yo’Self Week!), you are cultivating a positive, steady base for your romantic partnerships. Here are some easy ways to express that love.

1. Buy Fresh Flowers

If you’re like me, fresh flowers will instantly brighten your day.  Bright blooms make your home feel lively while reminding you that someone is thinking of you. Buying flowers for yourself may sound silly but this simple gesture will make you smile ear to ear. Spend some time tidying your space and then deck out your room with a gorgeous bouquet of daffodils. There is never a wrong time to buy flowers, especially if it has been a long week.

2. Change the Conversation

Negative self talk can become a toxic habit. We live with ourselves every moment of every day, so it’s vital we talk to ourselves as a friend. Admittedly, some of my internal conversation completely forgo the kindness present when I speak to my friends. Becoming conscious of negative self talk is the first step in changing the conversation. To push this practice even further, add positive affirmations. Compliment yourself aloud and list traits you like about yourself. Whether you admire the color of your eyes or you’re proud of a new accomplishment, acknowledging your positive traits — while maintaining a kind internal conversation — is a cornerstone of self-love.

3. Set the Mood

You deserve a place where you can relax and unwind. Sometimes it is important to have a chill night in. Light your favorite candles, break out the essential oils, run the bath, and pour yourself a glass of your favorite wine. Devoting at least one night a month to simple pleasures is a wonderful way to care for yourself. Find time to diminish your stress, simply relax.

4. Go to the Spa

It’s okay (great, actually) to occasionally treat yourself to a spa day. Whether you splurge on a massage, manicure, facial or all three, going to the spa will rejuvenate you. Spa days are a time to clear your head. At the spa you can feel good without worrying about pleasing your partner (it’s all about you, baby). If the spa is a little too pricey, you can always have a DIY spa day. All you really need is a mud mask and some nail polish.

We accept the love we think we deserve. Learning to be as kind to ourselves as we are to our lovers is the foundation of a healthy relationship. This Valentine’s Day, remember to spread love to the people you care for, which includes you.

How do you express self-love? —Alex



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You Were Put on This Planet to Do More Than Worry About Your Weight

I recently wrote this for The Huffington Post about weight. Scratch that, the post is actually more about purpose. Your purpose. My purpose. All of our purposes. You guys know that we are always saying that you’re more than the number on the scale. And that is so true. But — especially as we kick […]


I recently wrote this for The Huffington Post about weight.

Scratch that, the post is actually more about purpose. Your purpose. My purpose. All of our purposes.

You guys know that we are always saying that you’re more than the number on the scale. And that is so true. But — especially as we kick off our annual Love Yo’Self Week today (get all the awesome posts here!)— it goes even deeper than that. You’re more than a number … you’re more than a “look.” You’re more than what you eat and what you do in the gym.

You’re wonderful. You’re beautiful. You’re a freakin’ unicorn.

And unicorns don’t have the time to needlessly obsess about their weight. They have gifts and stuff to do in the world. Stuff that requires energy. So they work out and eat right as a way to show themselves love and feel good and energized — and then they go about their unicorn business, making the world a better place.

Read the full post here, and let’s start a conversation. What unicorn powers will you use today? And how will you take care of yourself so that you can do that? It’s time to take your power back, ladies. —Jenn



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Podcast Episode 19: Molly Sims Gets Candid About Body Image

Molly Sims is the definition of a supermodel. And we got to talk to her for our most recent podcast episode! Besides keeping up with her busy family (she was pregnant with baby no. 3 when she did this interview!), this 90s supermodel gets candid about body image and how being scrutinized so harshly in […]


Molly Sims is the definition of a supermodel. And we got to talk to her for our most recent podcast episode!

Besides keeping up with her busy family (she was pregnant with baby no. 3 when she did this interview!), this 90s supermodel gets candid about body image and how being scrutinized so harshly in show business at a young age affected her self image. She not only discusses social media and how she struggles with body positivity, but she also talks about her best skin care and fashion advice. So, yeah, there’s a little bit of something for everyone in this one! 

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Podcast Episode 19 Highlights With Molly Sims

  • Molly’s favorite gummy vitamins from Nature’s Bounty for hair, skin and nails
  • Her bouts with melasma (“pregnancy mask”) and how she treats it
  • How she went from a simple girl from Kentucky to an international high fashion model
  • The negative reaction she initially received from New York model agents
  • Molly’s favorite magazines and supermodels from her youth
  • Her tips for wearing the best fashion styles, no matter your age or size
  • The differences between her third pregnancy and previous pregnancies
  • How the beauty world has changed since she tried the “heroin chic” look

Also in this episode, Margo and Kristen discuss their top three style icons. And it’s kind of everything.

Get the episode with Molly Sims here or below!

Get more info on our podcast here and be sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you never miss an episode!

Who’s your style icon? Serena Williams rocks my world. (Call us to be on the podcast, please?!) Jenn



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Podcast Episode 18: Cassey Ho of Blogilates

Are you ready for 35 minutes of fit loveliness that’ll help you to amp up your motivation, love your body right now and put a smile on your face? Because that’s exactly what we’ve got in episode 18 of our podcast with Cassey Ho of Blogilates. You might know Cassey from YouTube or her 24 […]


blogilates

Are you ready for 35 minutes of fit loveliness that’ll help you to amp up your motivation, love your body right now and put a smile on your face? Because that’s exactly what we’ve got in episode 18 of our podcast with Cassey Ho of Blogilates.

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You might know Cassey from YouTube or her 24 Hour Fitness Class or her book or her activewear line POPFLEX. Girlfriend is busy. And for as incredibly successful and recognized as she is as an expert in the fitness industry, she is as down to earth as it comes. She’s also as real as it comes about body image, how hard she works and what “healthy” and “fit” really mean. 

Here are a few of our fave quotes from our interview!

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This is also another episode that is sponsored by the amazing coconut water brand we all love: Harmless Harvest! In the pre-show we discuss our favorite recipes we use with the new 32-ounce bottles of the water. (Kristen makes a mean popsicle by the way.)

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Podcast Episode 18 Highlights With Cassey Ho of Blogilates

  • How Cassey went from being a popular Pilates instructor to a YouTube star with more than 3 million (!) followers
  • Her incredible video, The Perfect Body, and all of the work that went into the creation of it
  • What being “fit” really means
  • Tips for improving your relationship with your body
  • The Pop Pilates class you can take at 24 Hour Fitness
  • The inspiration for her new “Dark Bloom” activewear collection
  • How her POPFLEX collection sells up to size 16
  • The perfect “YOLO” meal

Plus Margo, Kristen and I talk about what goes in behind the scenes of being an online star these days!

Get the episode with Cassey Ho here or below!

Get more info on our podcast here and be sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you never miss an episode!

What does being “fit” mean for you? For me, it’s an inner feeling. Not a look. Jenn



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How to Support a Friend’s Weight-Loss Journey

I really hate to make sweeping generalizations, but I find that most people are unsure of what to do or say when they know someone who’s trying to lose weight or implement healthy lifestyle changes. Typically, I see people falling into one of two groups: treat it like the proverbial elephant in the room and do/say […]


support

I really hate to make sweeping generalizations, but I find that most people are unsure of what to do or say when they know someone who’s trying to lose weight or implement healthy lifestyle changes. Typically, I see people falling into one of two groups: treat it like the proverbial elephant in the room and do/say little to nothing or become overly “helpful.”

The unfortunate thing is, that no matter which group you fall into, both usually come from a place of deep concern and a strong desire to support your friend on her journey. But even though both strategies come from good intentions, sadly, neither is particularly helpful.

Your heart’s totally in the right place, but it’s tough to know the right approach to take. There’s no list of guidelines detailing how to handle this delicate situation.

Having been in the total-lifestyle-overhaul position myself not all that long ago, here are a few things I found to be helpful as I walked the path.

How to Support a Friend’s Weight-Loss Journey

Check in with the person, not the progress. Don’t be overly fixated on their journey during conversations. Let her know that you care about how she’s doing, not how much weight she’s lost or how she’s eating or how much she’s working out. This reminds her that there’s more to her than the quest to get healthy and that you love and support her no matter what.

Help her see the big picture. Pounds lost is the typical way to quantify how the journey is progressing. But at the end of the day, it’s really about health and wellness — and pounds are only a small part of that equation. Increased muscle tone and size, less low back and knee pain, more energy, better digestion, mental clarity and overall happiness are also indicators of success, which should be celebrated. If she gets hung up on pounds or clothing sizes, check in with other numbers and measurements that help her to see the whole picture a little clearer, such as blood pressure, cholesterol levels, resting heart rate and all those awesome fitness milestones she has reached. This will help her focus on how her overall quality of life is improving throughout this journey.

Just listen. She’s going to have some days that don’t go so well. When those days come, don’t be her coach or get all judgey. Just listen and let her talk. Sometimes when we’re struggling, it helps to put the fear into words and let it out. Once spoken, it doesn’t seem so heavy or scary anymore and by letting her work it through on her own, you help empower her.

Suggest an accountability partnership. Be open and honest about something you’re struggling with or a goal you’re striving for. Ask her if she’d be willing to help you be accountable and stay focused on the positive. We all have something that we could use support with. Not your thing? Then just be active together or sign up for events together. It’s easier to show up when you know someone else is counting on you and you’re working toward a common goal.

Let her pick the place. If you decide to meet for lunch or coffee, let her pick the spot. Eating out can be a source of anxiety for people looking to live a healthier lifestyle. Replace food-focused events with other meetups or just let her decide where to go so that she’s deciding what level of temptation she wants to face that day. And please don’t turn into the food police when you get there — watch your words, facial expressions and body language. Remember, you’re getting together because you care about her — not to give her a pop quiz.

Tell her how her journey inspires you. This one is huge. And I don’t mean a generic statement of “you inspire me.” Tell her what you find so inspiring, like how you admire her ability to handle challenges or her courage in the face of setbacks. Be specific. This is what she’ll remember and draw strength from when it gets hard.

The most important thing you can do is be a safe place. No temptation, no judgment. No one needs someone running along behind her pointing out the less-than-stellar choices. What she needs now, more than anything, is a friend to listen and support her.

There is more to her (and your friendship) than the journey she’s on.

What support strategies have you found to be helpful? Please share your experiences in the comments below. —Alison



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Podcast Episode 16: Weight-Loss Secrets With Trainer Dave Smith

As we announced yesterday, registration for the 10 in 4 Challenge is open! And to celebrate, we thought, hey, why not do a podcast episode with Dave Smith, one of our favorite trainers and the Fit Bottomed Dude we’re partnering up with for this online love-yo’self weight-loss program, to talk all things lasting weight-loss? And […]


weight-loss secrets

As we announced yesterday, registration for the 10 in 4 Challenge is open! And to celebrate, we thought, hey, why not do a podcast episode with Dave Smith, one of our favorite trainers and the Fit Bottomed Dude we’re partnering up with for this online love-yo’self weight-loss program, to talk all things lasting weight-loss?

And we go deep, yo. He shares some serious weight-loss secrets that can change your life. (And, spoiler: they’re not diet-y or drastic in the least. Plus, they work!) We also chat about how this whole collaboration came about — and there’s a lot of talk about peanut butter. Because, man, we apparently all have opinions on that. Oh, and you guys are going to LOVE his song pick. That alone is worth a listen.

Here are a few tasty tidbits from the ep

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Episode 16 Highlights (and Weight-Loss Secrets!) With Dave Smith

  • Why he prefers online training to “face to face” personal training
  • The online community created in the 10 in 4 Challenge and how it helps produce results
  • His survey on the top snack foods his clients would love to indulge in more
  • The principle of “Delay, Distract and Decide”
  • The power of habit building
  • His addiction to peanut butter and how the community around him helps him stay on track
  • Kristen’s “ab and a half” coming back
  • Adrenal fatigue and how it affects a person’s ability to lose weight
  • Tricks you can do to lose weight as you get older and your metabolism slows down
  • Maintaining “body love” while losing weight

Plus Margo, Kristen and I talk about our philosophy on diets and weight-loss. Can you believe that this is our final podcast ep for 2016? True story! (No worries — we’ll be back in 2017 with more blow-your-mind guests.)

Get the episode with Dave Smith here or below!

Get more info on our podcast here and be sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you never miss an episode!

How do you like your peanut butter? Crunchy or smooth? Let’s keep the debate going. And if you want to take the 10 in 4 Challenge, sign up here! —Jenn



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The Dark Side of New Year’s Resolutions

The New Year is right around the corner, and you know what that means. It’s time to make your New Year’s resolutions — if you’re into that (and why wouldn’t you be!?). If you’re one of the many people who resolve to become healthier each New Year, high five. I’m right there with you. But […]


New Year's goals

The New Year is right around the corner, and you know what that means. It’s time to make your New Year’s resolutions — if you’re into that (and why wouldn’t you be!?). If you’re one of the many people who resolve to become healthier each New Year, high five. I’m right there with you. But what happens when our well-intended goals suddenly become obsessions?

If you (or someone you know) has a “perfectionist personality” or tends to have set routines, some of those resolutions can take an unhealthy turn quickly.

Starting out with what seems like small changes in eating habits or exercise patterns may not seem like a warning sign that something is wrong, but when they become compulsive and start to interfere with one’s day-to-day life, they can be dangerous — even deadly,” according to the Eating Recovery Center.

Two popular New Year’s resolutions can turn into eating disorders pretty easily if your personality and genetic disposition align for it. The most common occurrence of this is orthorexia, which is the obsession with only eating certain foods that are considered “clean” or “right,” and overexercise, which is exactly what it sounds like. When someone suddenly exercises more intensely or for longer amounts of time than usual and deems this a requirement rather than a desire, they have reached the point of overexercise.

While these, on the surface, may not sound like particularly serious problems to have, they can become dangerous very quickly. It’s important to watch for signs of these behaviors in yourself and others. The key indicator is the obsession — the feeling that you have to do this to be healthy rather than you want to do this to be healthier.

We wholeheartedly believe in the motto, “Everything in moderation,” and  resolutions are no exception.

Make that healthy resolution. Eat “clean.” Exercise more. But understand your limits. Give yourself a break. If you have a little extra dessert, don’t punish yourself in the gym. One mistake won’t derail your goals. Continual “mistakes” may mean you need to reevaluate and adjust to be more realistic for where you are in your life. And that’s totally fine! Healthy doesn’t look a certain way, so if you need to redefine what “healthier” means for your resolution, do it.

It’s totally okay to make a simple New Year’s resolution that is relative to your life. Be healthier. Eat better. Exercise more. Be nicer. Cook more. Drink more water. Save more money. Clean the bathroom more often. Bite your fingernails less. You know, the important stuff.

In all seriousness, it’s also totally cool not to have a resolution at all. Maybe you’re already living your best life. And if that’s the case, share your secret in the comments.

What are your New Year’s resolutions? Do you have any you need to adjust? — Megan 



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More Cleavage, Better Workout?

You know, I totally understand the whole “look good to feel good” thing, but I recently came across an article that took that idea to a whole other level. The New York Post recently published an article titled, “Get Ready to See a Lot More Cleavage at the Gym.” Obviously intrigued, I clicked on it. The article […]


You know, I totally understand the whole “look good to feel good” thing, but I recently came across an article that took that idea to a whole other level. The New York Post recently published an article titled, “Get Ready to See a Lot More Cleavage at the Gym.” Obviously intrigued, I clicked on it.

The article starts out by explaining how a 22-year-old, Upper West Side, New York City resident used to work out in a “boring racerback sports bra” until she saw all the women at her new gym, Tone House, sporting strappy, low-cut bras. She knew she had to “step her game up.”

Are you effing kidding me? Since when do we go to the gym to compete with the woman on the Spin bike next to us? I thought the whole point was to be a better you than you were yesterday. Talk about falling into the comparison trap.

But the article doesn’t stop there. Oh, it gets even better:

“It’s definitely something we bond over, here at Tone House,” she says. “We’re always complimenting each other, saying, ‘That’s such a cute bra!’ It definitely helps motivate you in your workout.

That is, if you’re already fit, trim and have a small to medium-size chest.

Sports bras designed to showcase cleavage — rather than tamp down the girls — are all the rage, complete with flesh-baring cutouts, dominatrix-like straps and plunging, zip-up necklines.”

Okay, first off, if a bra compliment is what you need to work out, there’s a whole other issue going on there. Do compliments make me feel better about myself? You bet. But I sure as hell am way more motivated when someone compliments my form or hard work as opposed to what I decide to throw on my body that day.

Second of all, the whole “if you’re already fit, trim and have a small to medium-size chest.” Excuse me? I’m pretty sure a woman can wear whatever effing bra she wants regardless of her boob size or whether or not she’s “trim” in your eyes.

The most superficial and ridiculous post I’ve quite possibly ever read. It actually makes me sad that these women feel such a need to compete with one another. Why are you truly working out? It’s no wonder you think working out isn’t fun if your main reason for being there is to make sure you’re hotter than the girl next to you or you have the guys drooling over you. EFF THAT.

Look, I am by no means a plain Jane. I love clothes (like in an “I have a room just for clothes on top of a few closets” kind of way — and I even like these strappy bras) and am all about fashionable activewear, but by no means do I ever go to the gym looking to have a cuter bra or whatever (because I work out in more than just a sports bra) than the girl next to me. I go there with my hair on top of my head like a pineapple, no makeup and a cute outfit that I LIKE and know will allow me to have the most badass workout.

The last thing I’m worrying about is whether or not Scott thinks my boobs look good or if Tricia thinks my tank is cute. Who the hell cares? I’m there for me — and only me.

Am I the only one feeling this way about this article? —Erika



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I Want My Butt Back!

Joni Mitchell pegged it when she wrote, “you don’t know what you got ‘til it’s gone.” Take for example the butt, yep, your backside. Do you complain that it’s too big, too long or too flabby? Do you curse those little ripples of cellulite and dutifully perform squats hoping to transform its shape? Or maybe […]


Joni Mitchell pegged it when she wrote, “you don’t know what you got ‘til it’s gone.” Take for example the butt, yep, your backside.

Do you complain that it’s too big, too long or too flabby? Do you curse those little ripples of cellulite and dutifully perform squats hoping to transform its shape?

Or maybe you actually like your glutes, and by all accounts you most definitely should; without them you’d be roaming around on all fours. But beyond its anatomical purpose, our butt deserves our love and respect. In fact, each and every day you should be singing its praise no matter what kind of shape you perceive it to be in. At least you have one!

I recently lost my ass, as in literally, not figuratively. A personal crisis sent my nerves into overdrive and before I knew it I’d lost ten pounds, nine of which must have been stored in my ass. It’s now flat as a pancake, and let me tell you, I miss those pounds — a lot.

That badonkadonk does more than make you look good in your jeans; it actually helps to hold the damn things up! With no curves to cling to, the fabric begins a slow migration south, so most of my day is spent pulling up the crouch of my pants from hanging halfway down to my knees.

Skirts are no better. When you lack a booty even the pencil variety fails to flatter. If I could rotate my head like an owl, you’d never know if I was coming or going!

Sitting is problematic also. Without that proverbial junk in the trunk, I squirm around in my chair like a five year old, switching from cheek to cheek, trying unsuccessfully to gain a comfortable purchase.

And it wasn’t just fat I lost, but hard-earned muscle, too! I could just weep.

It’ll take some time, but when I get my booty back I promise to never again make discourteous remarks about it or any other perfectly functioning body part. Compared to what I’ve got going on now, it was a thing of beauty.

Name your least favorite body part and then tell us something good about it. —Karen



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How Losing Weight Won’t Change Your Life

There’s no shortage of articles and posts documenting the many ways that your life will change if you lose a substantial amount of weight. Seriously, Google it. I believe those bases have all been adequately covered. And being someone who has lost a huge amount of weight myself, I can totally vouch — it’s a massive change […]


There’s no shortage of articles and posts documenting the many ways that your life will change if you lose a substantial amount of weight. Seriously, Google it. I believe those bases have all been adequately covered.

And being someone who has lost a huge amount of weight myself, I can totally vouch — it’s a massive change and your life seems to be globally affected. Notice that I said seems.

Aside from the occasional slightly unpleasant unexpected side effect (loose skin, etc.), it might appear that once you drop a bunch of weight, your life will start to fall into place. And to some extent, it’s true.

It can change the shape of your body. It can change the size of clothes you buy. It can change your grocery shopping list and your priorities. It can certainly change your energy levels and overall health and well-being. All fabulous stuff.

However, there’s one very important thing that weight loss cannot change.

Losing weight won’t bring you happiness.

How Your Life Won’t Change

The odds are that your weight isn’t the root cause of your unhappiness. In fact, it’s very possible that your weight is merely a symptom of your unhappiness.

In my case, I was just as unhappy after dropping 70 pounds as I was before. I’d succeeded in changing my clothing size and my health status, but it didn’t change what was wrong in my soul.

The biggest underlying issues for me were my struggle with feelings of not being good enough and loads of negative self-speak. It ultimately led me to gain and, for many years, fail to lose a ton of weight. My weight wasn’t the real problem — my head was. When I finally did lose the weight, I discovered that those feelings of inadequacy and the harsh self-criticism didn’t go away, they just popped up in other areas of my life, like in my jobs and my relationships.

It was never really about the weight. Being overweight and unhealthy was simply a manifestation of how I felt about myself on the inside. It wasn’t the cause of it.

Why does it matter? Well, because whatever led you to gaining the weight will be right there waiting for you at your goal weight unless you address the true root of your unhappiness.

What many people — myself included — don’t expect is that a big physical change doesn’t necessarily change the mental and emotional stuff underneath it all. Perhaps this is why such a high percentage of people are unsuccessful at keeping the weight off. Without addressing the underlying issues, you’re unable or unwilling to sustain the lifestyle change.

The Bottom Line

Be careful with articles and anecdotes that speak of this wonderful place “post-weight loss” where all your dreams come true. Or even the ones that tell you that the worst side effects of weight loss are loose skin, losing friends and credit card bills from clothes shopping.

You can shed the fear that your poor heart could, someday, have enough of your unhealthy ways and just give out, which is HUGE and awesome, don’t get me wrong. But losing weight alone isn’t enough to make you shed the self-criticism, self-loathing and all the other stuff that’s causing you to be unhappy.

Please don’t misunderstand me and think I’m advising you to not lose the weight. By all means, give yourself the gift of wellness — it’s the highest and most precious form of self-love. I support you fully and completely.

My point is this: aside from major medical concerns, your weight probably isn’t the true reason for your unhappiness — that is, most likely, tied to other factors. Therefore, losing weight alone won’t fix what’s really wrong with your life. It won’t fix your job or your marriage, or heal your family or your past, or bring you the perfect partner.

My Advice?

As you walk the path of changing your physical shape and reclaiming your health, spend just as much time working on changing the shape of your life and reconnecting to yourself. Don’t expect to peel the layers of fat away and unveil a bright, shiny new version of yourself where life is always fabulous and your concerns are gone.

Better yet, make the firm commitment to yourself (right here, right now) to start addressing the sources of unhappiness in your life, no matter how much weight you think you need to lose. If you do this, you’ll find that many of your self-destructive and self-sabotaging behaviors naturally start to dissolve. When you hold happiness inside for yourself, you begin to lose the desire to look for it elsewhere.

Weight loss is wonderful but what it isn’t is a one-size-fits-all magic potion that just fixes how you feel about yourself or your life. Lose the weight because you love yourself, you deserve better and want to live in alignment with your highest potential.

Don’t do it because you think it’ll automatically make you happy.

Have a successful strategy for finding true happiness? Please share! —Alison



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Podcast Episode 7: Kelsey Miller of Refinery 29 on Why Diets Suck

Credit: Harry Tanielyan Here’s a scary fact: a girl goes on her first diet at the average age of 8 years old. Yes, 8 years old. We all know what disliking your body can do to your self confidence and sense of self-worth — but what happens when it starts at such a young age for […]


Credit: Harry Tanielyan

Here’s a scary fact: a girl goes on her first diet at the average age of 8 years old. Yes, 8 years old.

We all know what disliking your body can do to your self confidence and sense of self-worth — but what happens when it starts at such a young age for most young girls and is so ingrained in their development?

This is just one of the many reasons why we are SO passionate about promoting positive body image and having real, authentic conversations about being truly healthy and happy. This is why we loved talking to Kelsey Miller, senior editor at Refinery29, for our latest podcast episode.

We’ve always been big fans of Kelsey’s The Anti-Diet Project column and her book Big Girl: How I Learned to Give Up Dieting and Got a Life (read more about it here), and we seriously had the BEST conversation about body image (and how it’s still in the misguided context of beauty), weight neutrality, her amazing doctor, intuitive eating and how she learned to love herself and ditch diets for good.

Here are just a couple of awesome gems from our discussion …

kelsey-quote-1kelsey-quote-2Podcast Episode 7 Highlights With Kelsey Miller of Refinery29

  • Kelsey’s lifelong struggle with food issues and how the principles of intuitive eating changed her perception on dieting
  • Dealing with “food bullies”
  • The joys of living a full life without worry about cutting carbs or abstaining from whole food groups
  • What new projects she’s working on

Plus, in the pre-interview portion of the episode, Kristen, Margo and I talk about our experience with intuitive eating and why diets in general just suck. We also share our thoughts about this RIDICULOUS body shaming incident — and body shaming in general by personal trainers.

Get the ep with Kelsey Miller here or  below!

Get more info on our podcast here and be sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you never miss an episode!

What was your fave part of this discussion? I loved how open and honest Kelsey was about everything. It’s so true that so many of us let our obsession with weight hold us back from really living. Jenn



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The Secret to Making the Most of Your Fitness Tracker

You may have seen this study on how fitness trackers may not help you lose weight. It certainly made headlines and it certainly got our attention. We mean, how can more info and actual real-time reminders of how much (or little) you’re moving be a bad thing? After using fitness trackers for years, we do feel […]


You may have seen this study on how fitness trackers may not help you lose weight. It certainly made headlines and it certainly got our attention. We mean, how can more info and actual real-time reminders of how much (or little) you’re moving be a bad thing? After using fitness trackers for years, we do feel like they’re helpful (as long as you don’t let them drive you batty). But, it’s hard to ignore research and, you know, science.

So we decided to chat with Dr. Andreas Michaelides, who also studies weight-loss and is chief of psychology at Noom, a holistic weight-loss app. And his take was kind of fascinating.

According to Dr. Michaelides, it all comes down to mindfulness.

“Fitness trackers and other technologies make it easier for people to understand and monitor progress, but these technologies frequently make people passive participants in their health,” he says. “If consumers want more sustainable weight-loss over the long-term, they need mindfulness because it prepares them for the difficult work that is needed for meaningful behavior change.”

So, What Is Mindfulness?

A basic form of mindfulness is having “a non-judgmental awareness with what’s taking place in the present,” he says. “The brain is the reason why weight-loss is either successful or unsuccessful. It’s where all your unhealthy habits live and also where your motivation is formed.”

How Can Your Brain Help You to Lose Weight?

“We have wired connections in our brain that dictate our behaviors,” Dr. Michaelides says. “Changing behaviors or bad habits involves forming entirely new connections or strengthening weaker ones. This requires that the individual practice new behaviors over and over again in an infinite number of ways in order for them to become sustainable.”

Do Fitness Trackers Work for Anyone?

“Fitness trackers are likely most effective for people who are already health- and wellness-oriented,” he says. “Not for those looking to make long-term behavioral changes. Health tracking isn’t behavior change.”

So How Do We Make Long-Term Changes?

“It’s important to understand that the brain’s role in learning new behaviors, practicing them over time and maintaining them in the long term,” Dr. Michaelides says. “This is the key to not only reaching your weight and health goals but also keeping them.

What we’ve found is that behavior change is really hard to achieve and it’s even harder to maintain long term. This requires that the individual step outside of their comfort zone and work consistently at that change over time in order for it to be meaningful.”

Bottom line: It takes more than just tech to make change. It takes brainpower!

Have you noticed fitness gains or lost weight when using a fitness tracker? —Jenn



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Why Tim Gunn Calling Out the Fashion Industry Is a Body Positivity Win for All of Us

We don’t talk much about “fashion” here unless it’s somehow related to athleisure or performance-enhancing sweat-wicking bad-ass-looking fabrics. But this article that Tim Gunn wrote certainly got our attention — and the attention of a lot of our readers. And by “attention,” we mean this: via GIPHY Because, Tim Gunn is SO incredibly right. Not only is […]


We don’t talk much about “fashion” here unless it’s somehow related to athleisure or performance-enhancing sweat-wicking bad-ass-looking fabrics. But this article that Tim Gunn wrote certainly got our attention — and the attention of a lot of our readers.

And by “attention,” we mean this:

via GIPHY

Because, Tim Gunn is SO incredibly right. Not only is the fashion industry missing a huge business opportunity to design for the majority of women, but it’s damn limiting to restrict the art of fashion to a limited pool of people. I mean, what if Picasso or Leonardo di Vinci only had one size of canvas to paint on? Can you imagine the works of art we’d miss out on?

People come in all shapes and sizes. And we all deserve to feel beautiful in our clothes — be they clothes for the gym, the grocery store or a night out on the town.

Thankfully, there are a lot more and better plus-sized workout clothes options out there than in years past and there are awesome designers like Christian Siriano who are doing it right. But we need more. Obviously many, many more.

And while we wait for the industry to change — and I think with people like Tim Gunn speaking up, it will — remember this: You do not need a high-fashion designer to validate your body size to feel beautiful. That power is within you.

So, who can sew and wants to create the next high-fashion brand that caters to women of all sizes? As Tim Gunn would say, we need designers who can “make it work!” —Jenn



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