blogging · fitness · tbt · Throwback Thursday

Why so much personal writing on a feminist blog? #tbt

I just finished grading papers for my class “The Art of the Personal Essay” and I continue to have so much respect for personal writing and the stories it enables people to tell. So it’s got me thinking (again) about personal writing. We do a lot of it here on the blog — the majority of our posts involve personal writing at some level, even if it’s a post focusing on commentary. I thought it might be good to revisit why we do that. So here is a post from a couple of years ago as a #tbt that considers why our blog has so much personal writing on it. Have a good one! T

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

Black and white combination of the "mars-venus" symbols for M and F, with a shared circle and an equals sign in the middle of the circle. Black and white combination of the “mars-venus” symbols for M and F, with a shared circle and an equals sign in the middle of the circle. You may have noticed that here at Fit Is a Feminist Issue we write a lot about our own experiences: our latest training plans and decisions (like when I hired a coach to train for Around the Bay); events we’ve done (like Sam’s account of the Five Boros Bike Tour on Sunday), thoughts on food (like Sam’s cooking), weight (and why I don’t talk about it), and body neutrality or body positivity; that new sport we’re trying out (like Catherine’s kayaking); stuff we like (speed work!); stuff we don’t like much (me and the bike). It can all seem so self-centred!

There are actually good reasons a lot of feminist writers favour or at…

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fitness · holiday fitness · holidays · tbt · Throwback Thursday

On Pacing Yourself *During* the Holidays #tbt

We aren’t quite there yet and I’m not having any guests this year, but this post about pacing ourselves during the holidays seems like a timely #tbt nonetheless. Enjoy!

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

christmastreeI’ve just emerged from a couple of solid days in the kitchen (a treat for me, since I love to cook and don’t usually have time to make it a priority).

Sam posted the other day about pacing yourself after the holidays. But since by my count we still have a week of revelry to go, I thought it might not be too late to post about pacing yourself during the holidays.

I’m not talking about food, though of course there is that.  No shortage of magazine articles telling us how to deal with holiday parties and cookie exchanges and a time of year when it seems we’re surrounded by delicious food almost every where we go.  My advice on that isn’t all that helpful: eat it.

I’m more interested in pacing ourselves activity-wise. For some of us, when the routine gets thrown sideways, even by good things, it’s…

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fitness · tbt · Throwback Thursday

Nipples: Why So Controversial? #tbt

As I looked back on past July’s and landed back in 2016, I decided to reblog something in keeping with our body policing/body shaming themes that have emerged in the recent posts about swimwear and body hair. Also, it’s Wimbledon! I actually haven’t been following my favourite tennis tournament this year so I don’t know what the latest controversies are, but a couple of years ago people were upset about nipples. We’ve got them, but no one wants to see them “out of context.” Read more….

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

serenaLet’s get one thing out of the way right from the get-go: women have nipples. Right? One of our most popular blog posts ever is about nipple phobia and padded sports bras. Sam wrote that over three years ago and it seems the nipple controversy has not abated.

Serena Williams drew commentary and criticism because, apparently, as she was busy leaving the other women in the dust on her way to her 22nd Grand Slam title and 7th Wimbledon championship (for the best record ever in professional tennis, period), her sports bra didn’t sufficiently cover her nipples.

Here are some of the comments:

‘I wouldn’t usually comment on another woman’s body, but could someone give Serena Williams something to cover her nipples…very distracting’, wrote one.

Another chimed in: ‘With all the money Serena Williams earns, why can’t she buy a decent sports bra which covers her nipples properly?’

‘Surprised BBC…

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body image · tbt · Throwback Thursday

Still Struggling with Body Image? Try a Nude Vacation #tbt

As we enter into the holiday season (yes, it’s coming), we are about to face a barrage of posts that are trying to make us feel badly about our bodies (you know the ones, all about holiday weight gain — more on that in a few weeks!). Here’s an oldie but goodie from the early days of the blog, when I (Tracy) reported on how I tackled my body image issues in an unusual way: I went to a nude resort and it was transformative!

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

Sam and I often get a kick out of the site stats that tell us what search engine terms get people to the blog. People have landed here by searching “soccer and beer,” “If a guy says you are not fat but fluffy,” “aikido makes me nervous,” “hard fast no cuddling after tshirt,” and “no other regret compares to the childhood email address made.”

But yesterday, my heart really went out to the person who searched “I want to be nude at home but I’m too modest.”  Many of us struggle with body image. I’m not sure if this searcher is too modest because she (or he) is self-conscious about her (or his) body not being “good enough,” but if she is, I can recommend a solution that worked for me:  a nude vacation.

A few years ago my husband finally convinced me to try a nude resort for our…

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diets · eating · fitness · Throwback Thursday · weight loss

Let’s Talk about the Myth of the Skinny Vegan Bitch #tbt

Here’s a #tbt for you from four years ago. Though I would venture that veganism is more popular now than it was then, and is gaining followers all the time, myths still abound. And one of them is that you’ll get skinny real fast if you opt to eat a thoroughly plant-based diet. You won’t necessarily lose weight at all. But that’s not a reason not to try it. Another myth is that you can’t possibly retain muscle if you’re vegan. You can! I’ll write about that sometime next month. Meanwhile, enjoy this old post. I’m vegan, but I’m neither skinny nor a bitch (or so I like to think anyway)!
Tracy

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

vegan-food-cc-300x400Here’s how the first installment in the Skinny Bitch series (authors Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin) starts:

Are you sick and tired of being fat?  Good. If you can’t take one more day of self-loathing, you’re ready to get skinny...

This is not a diet. This is a way of life. A way to enjoy food. A way to feel healthy, clean, energized and pure. It’s time to reclaim your mind and body. It’s time to strut your skinny ass down the street liek you’re in an episode of Charlie’s Angels with some really cool song playing in the background. It’s time to prance around in a thong like you rule the world. It’s time to get skinny.

It sounds almost empowering.  Almost.

The first red flag?  If you’re full of self-loathing then…wait for it…getting skinny is the answer!  If that’s not clear from the introduction, it is made…

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Throwback Thursday

A Tale of Two Locker Rooms, #tbt

Throwback Thursday! Here’s Tracy on a tale of two locker rooms

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

Employee-Locker

Happy International Women’s Day! In honour of IWD, I thought I’d write about my experience in a women-only space that lots of us who lead active lifestyles spend some time in: the women’s locker room.

I frequent two locker rooms regularly: the women’s locker room at the hot yoga studio and the adults only women’s locker room at the Y. These locker rooms have very different vibes and cultures. The difference fascinates me.

More than half of the women in the hot yoga locker room are under 35. A good majority of these women have youthful, firm, slender bodies that fit the ideal of feminine beauty so prized by our current social context. They take their hot yoga class wearing the shortest shorts and the teeniest crop tops. And to me, they look enviably perfect in their hot yoga clothes.

Yet these same young women hide behind their towels when…

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athletes · Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday!: Why are painful workouts so much fun? (And other questions about suffering and athletic performance)

From the archives, two years ago, what makes athletic suffering enjoyable?

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

What makes painful workouts so much fun? Or assuming there’s some self selection at work here, we could ask the question a little bit differently: Why do athletes find painful workouts so much fun?

Now not all of the workouts I do are painful. Most days of the week I workout out twice a day and I wouldn’t be able to take that kind of intensity all the time. Nor does it make sense from a training point of view. But still the best workouts, the ones that are the most fun, are the painful ones. And as philosopher, I find this appreciation for pain more than a little puzzling.

But let me begin by describing two of the painful workouts I’ve done this week.

Here’s Monday’s Crossfit workout: The snatch ladder (be mature, no sexual jokes please, we’re all grown ups here)

The snatch ladder from the Crossfit Games…

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