blogging · fitness · training

Tracy’s good-bye for now series, part 1: Why Tracy is stepping away from the blog

Image description: head shot of Tracy, smiling, in running tank, ear buds, sunglasses, and a blue ballcap that says “Around the Bay 125th anniversary” with a painted landscape mural in the background.

In August 2012, both 48 years old, Sam and I decided to become the fittest we’d ever been in our lives by the time we hit 50. That gave us two years to make and execute a plan. We decided to blog about our fittest by 50 challenge and also about feminist issues in fitness–stuff that bothered us, made us feel strong. Along the way we brought some more bloggers on board. First as occasional guests. Then as regular contributors. Our fiftieth birthdays came and went. We hit our goals. We wrote a book about it.

And we kept blogging. And blogging. And blogging.

And after seven years and hundreds of thousands of words of training updates, race reports, posts about doing less, posts about intuitive eating, rants about this and that outrageous sexist sport incident thing, post after post about what’s wrong with dieting, missives about putting away the scale, more race reports, more posts about getting back on track after falling out of routine, travel fitness logs, justifications and defences of rest, telling everyone why hormone replacement therapy was a life saver for me, … I’ve run out of steam for these topics and issues.

The clarity that it is time to step away hit me when I was away on my ten-day meditation course a few weeks ago. It’s not as if I’d even been toying with stepping away. But I have been feeling uninspired (and therefore, uninspiring) lately. Since Around the Bay I’ve had no end of setbacks. Though I felt strong the first day back, I soon had debilitating back pain that kept me almost immobile for weeks.

Since then, I’ve traveled enough to interrupt my training schedule. Then, as I’ve tried to ease back into running, my Achilles has been acting up. My physiotherapist has told me not to run. That makes the window of opportunity to train for the Toronto Scotiabank Waterfront Half Marathon on October 20 ever-shrinking. I should not have signed up for it before seeing my physiotherapist. The clock is ticking and I don’t know how I can go from zero to 21K — and without injury — by race day. I don’t really feel like blogging about that.

The clarity came so strongly during my meditation course –it was like a full-body knowing set in and said: it’s time to take a step back and make space for others on the blog and for other things in my life. I think feminist commentary on fitness still matters. And hearing personal stories of triumph and struggle and getting on task and falling away and getting motivated again still matters. But I don’t feel I’ve got anything much left to say.

Not only that, we have built a diverse and energetic team of amazing regulars over the years, along with a huge group of guests. So I can easily leave without so much as a missed beat on the blog. Though Sam and I co-founded it and it grew up around our own challenge, the shape of the blog has changed over these past seven years and it really is a team effort now. I’m enormously grateful to everyone who contributes to the blog’s success by creating smart and relevant content on regular basis.

I’ll be writing a short series over the next couple of weeks as my way of saying “good-bye for now.” In part 2, on Thursday, I’m going to talk about some of my favourite posts by the other authors. In part 3, next Tuesday (August 27th), I’m going to reflect on the posts of my own that I like the best. And finally, in part 4 (August 29th), I’ll reflect a bit on how the blog has shaped, influenced, and forever altered the way I engage with fitness pursuits in my own life. It has meant a lot to me, not just as a way of motivating me to stay on task and try new things, but also by creating a sense of community and camaraderie that I had not anticipated.

On the 29th, it’ll be almost exactly seven years to the day since my very first post. That seems like a fitting date on which to call it a day.

17 thoughts on “Tracy’s good-bye for now series, part 1: Why Tracy is stepping away from the blog

  1. We’re going to miss you! I’m preferring to think of it as end to your regular scheduled planned fitness blogging but that you’ll be back from time to time when you’re moved to write. Hope your running continues to go well even if it’s slowed down right now.

    1. Also, we created this amazing place and community you can come back to. Also, I can’t wait to hear more about your new writing projects.

      1. And yes, I do love the community that has grown around the blog. It is warm and energetic and feels like a big group of smart women who are our friends and supporters!

  2. Visit when you’re ready to, Tracy! I know the feeling of realizing that you’ve reached the end of a blogging journey, and it’s not an unmixed experience when you have to tell people that you are done. But you’ve built something so good here that I am sure you have warm feelings about what you’ve accomplished and I hope you come around on occasion to celebrate at the house you built, so to speak.

    1. Thanks, Kate. I definitely have warm feelings about the blog and the blog community. It’s been a huge part of my life and I feel really fortunate that it evolved the way it did. It was neither expected nor predictable.

  3. Tracy, I am so grateful for you and Sam creating this space for these conversations! Thank you for doing the hard part, and for letting so many of us join in the fun!

    I look forward to you popping in from time to time, as you feel inspired, and wish you all the best on the next projects!

    1. Thank you, Marjorie Rose! And welcome to the team — I was just saying to Sam the other day how I love the new energy you’re bringing. And I will surely pop in from time to time. All the best.

  4. Tracy, I wouldn’t have this incredibly important community if you and Sam hadn’t created this space. I am so grateful to you for your energy, your voice, your spirit of inquiry, your friendship and your love. xc

    1. Cate, thank you. I’m grateful it brought you into my life, too. We will continue our conversations off-site! Txo

  5. This blog is one of the first ones I found when I started here on WordPress (with a different blog to this one); I love everything about it, from its title to the content- congratulations on creating such a wonderful addition to the feminist discourse, and for listening to your own inner voice when she wants a change 🙏🏼
    Best wishes from Australia, G

    1. Thank you so much, G. It’s really satisfying to me and to all of us here when we have regulars who love the blog. Your participation has always been welcome and noted!

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