Best advice ever . . .

Wish I had found this ten years ago. . . been following these rules for about 5 years and they are prefect.

Christmas time rules All the time rules:

  1. do not go into debt trying to show people how much you love them
  2. do not go home to see family if it damages your mental health
  3. if someone comments on your weight, eat them.


my ass is cold

Happy New Years from Canada!


Shit people say the gym . . .

So some lady interrupts me in the middle of my bench press. (People . . . for safety reasons you should always let a lifter rack their weight before you try talking to them!)

Lady: “Oh! You are so strong!” She says to me while she flexes her arms in front of her. I was in the middle of a set so couldn’t respond right then. She then apologizes for interrupting me and moves off to collect some dumbbells.

After I racked the bar the lady came back.

Lady: “You are so strong. Are you a hockey player?” She is once again flexing her arms low in front of her body and shrugging her shoulders.

Me: “Uh . . . ? No. That would require that I be able to skate.” (I also seriously hate team sports . . . soccer, football, basketball, hockey, etc. If you are my arch nemesis and want to make me suffer horribly before I die make me watch sports for an entire minute.)

Lady: Looking surprised . . . “You can’t skate?!”

Me: “Nope.”

Lady: “Oh”. She looked a bit confused. I am not sure why. I know we are in Canada, but I can’t be the only Canadian who can’t skate.

She ended up asking me for some help with completing the workout plan she had. She had only been attending the gym for two weeks, and didn’t remember what all the short forms of exercise names the trainers use on the form stood for. I helped her out as much as possible while hiding my desire to go find the trainer who thought it was ok to write one cookie cutter workout plan to hand it to all new gym members and smack that trainer silly. (Seriously, my gym has one free plan they hand to all new members. A trainer walks the new member through each exercise once and then they are on their own.)

Walking home I kept wondering why this lady had decided to ask if I played hockey and made ape gestures at me. I don’t wear or carry any sports paraphernalia. I don’t watch the sports playing silently on the gym television. All I could think of is she maybe thought I had the body type of a hockey player? Again I hate sports and don’t watch them or play any myself. The people I know who do play recreational hockey are all of very different body types (tall, short, thin, fat, medium etc.). I personally don’t have an image in my mind of what a typical female hockey player looks like.

So when I got home I told my partner about this conversation. He said well a lot of hockey players are the stockier sort (he also did a kind of low flexing gesture with his arms) . . . and then he kinda trailed off like he realized that he may be digging himself a coffin shaped hole and jumping in head first. (I mostly just found this funny. I let him squirm a little in silence. Don’t worry. He still breaths. He did not commit suicide by spouse.)

So . . . average height, fat, and muscular equals hockey player? WTF?

I have put a lot of work into body positivity, ditching diet-culture, and bad gym-culture. I am ok with being of average height. I am ok with being fat. I will never have a thin body. What I do have is a very strong body that responds wonderfully to my training efforts by building muscle for me and letting me lift more and more weight over time. I love that I am able to build muscle and get stronger. I love muscle. I have more muscle then ever before and it has come from working out less and eating more. The only thing the “eat less and exercise more” shitty diet advice did for me was make me miserably underfed and over exercised.

I am bothered by this conversation mostly because it seems to suggest the idea that if a female is strong or is training for strength . . . she must be doing it for some (socially acceptable) reason, such as sports. She can’t just pursue strength for the sake of building strength.



I am still trying to sort out my own feelings about #metoo. In the meantime this article has some good discussion . . .

[note: this post contains descriptions of cases of sexual harassment and violence] I can’t help it. I know we’re a fitness blog, but all I can think about is the “me too” thing that took hold this week. Early this week, social media was overflowing with posts of “me too” in answer to this call […]

via We interrupt our regularly scheduled fitness programming for a commentary on #metoo — Fit Is a Feminist Issue

I love these so much!

As some people are celebrating holidays that include things like chocolate, candy, and feasts, I am seeing a ton of food shaming, food policing, and food moralizing. All of this is crap for the reasons I explain here, but I thought what I would do today is give you some options for response. Note, today’s responses are […]

via Tell The Food Police To Take A Holiday with the Help of My Dogs — Dances With Fat

Why I don’t talk about food choices or weight (yours or mine) anymore — Fit Is a Feminist Issue

It’s been a long time coming, my personal prohibition against talking to people about food, diet, weight loss or gain–yours, mine, or someone else’s. Several years ago, in the early days of the blog, I wrote, “‘You’ve lost weight, you look great!’ isn’t a compliment.” I outlined a bunch of reasons, from the implicit insinuation […]

via Why I don’t talk about food choices or weight (yours or mine) anymore — Fit Is a Feminist Issue

Why is there so much conflict between cyclists, cars and pedestrians? (Guest post) — Fit Is a Feminist Issue

In the last leg of the 127 km ride of the Triadventure, I was riding in a pack of six. We hit a light on a city-edge street, four of us got through and two of us stopped. It was a T-intersection going into a shopping plaza. There were no cars around anywhere. After stopping completely, […]

via Why is there so much conflict between cyclists, cars and pedestrians? (Guest post) — Fit Is a Feminist Issue


I had no idea some drivers behaved like this. I usually ride shot gun in my car and check my partner’s blind spots regularly for cyclists. There are a lot of cyclists where we work. The idea of accidentally clipping or hitting a cyclist terrifies me. That is why I double check. I don’t look for cyclists to harass them. I do not understand this rage.

Cyclists vs Pedestrians

I live in a city where riding a bike on the sidewalk is a bylaw offence. It also illegal to ride a bike though a cross walk. Cyclists may walk their bike through a pedestrian cross walk or walk their bike on a side walk but they are not allowed to ride it. Cyclists can and have been charged by police for violating these bylaws. But many cyclists  still ride on the sidewalks.

In principle sharing the sidewalk with cyclists has never bothered me. I do think pedestrians should always have priority over cyclists on the sidewalk. And really cities should have dedicated bike lanes. (My  city is a bit spotty with the bike lanes. Which is one the reasons I choose not to cycle.) I use to think actually charging people for riding on the sidewalk to be on the extreme side. My view is now changing after some negative experiences with rather ill tempered cyclists driving me off the sidewalk and swearing at me for being in their way.

I walk a lot. When I hear the ding of bike bell behind me, I move over to the far most right of the sidewalk so that the illegal cyclist may have plenty of room to pass me on my left. I give them plenty of room to pass me. I know from experience that there is enough room for one pedestrian and one cyclist to pass each other. If I have my dog with me, I direct my dog onto the grass shoulder so that there is still plenty of space on the sidewalk for the other person to pass. Same way that things work on the road. Faster vehicles pass on the left. I don’t look to see who is behind me. I just stay right to allow room for passing. This works just fine most of the time. But every once in a while I encounter a cyclist who seems to not know how to share and acts like they own the sidewalk.

Today I was walking to the gym. I heard a bell ding behind me and as usual I made sure I was on the far right of the sidewalk so whoever was behind me could pass. I continued walking as normal. A lady rides her bike past me then stops dead in front of me. She physically blocked me from continuing to walk. She said “I am trying to let my child pass.” She gave me a dirty look and she held her arm out so I could not go around her. Her child then rides his bike along on my left and passes. Something he could have done just fine while I was still walking. I said nothing, but raised my eyebrow at her. She then called me a “Bitch” giving me another dirty look over her shoulder and rode off with her child. I thought her actions were extremely rude, inappropriate and completely unnecessary. There was plenty of space for her and her boy to pass and the fact remains that she was committing a bylaw offence and simultaneously teaching her child how to break the law. Double fun.

I am not saying a child should be riding their bikes on the road. Child cyclists absolutely do not belong on the road. But they do need to be taught to share the sidewalk and that one day when they are grown they may learn the rules of the road and learn how to ride there.

I do not have my own children, but I have observed plenty of other parents address the sharing of the sidewalk in far far more appropriate ways then what the women above decided to do. I saw a dad awhile back who rode his bike along the road staying parallel with his daughter on the sidewalk. He stayed on residential low traffic streets and kept a careful lookout for cars and pedestrians. He then coached his child on what do to when these challenges presented themselves. He advised her to stay to the right to make room for people to pass her. He told her to stop at every corner and check for cars. I have seen other parents do the same for their kids while riding behind the child. They always yielded to pedestrians and taught their child to do the same. I have no objection to sharing the sidewalk with sensible cyclist like this. Once a small child tired his best to avoid me like his mother told him, but he ended up running his training wheel over my foot. It hurt, but I was not mad at that parent or her child, because I could see a conscientious parent doing their best and young children don’t really have the best motor skills. If my memory serves me right I also remember training wheels making steering bikes more difficult.

The part that really makes me angry about that rude lady, is that I said nothing to her. A corner of my minds tells me “You let her get away with her poor behaviour. She will never learn anything if someone doesn’t call her on her poor behaviour. She has no right to speak to you in that way.” A another part of my brain then points out “This women devolved to name calling in less than 10 seconds without any words being spoken to her. Speaking to a person like this would just be throwing gasoline on a flame.  Best to just let her move along without reacting to her.” Yet another side of my brain points out I could have/should have still said something. I could have referenced the city’s bylaws. There are ways I could have responded to her that would have let her know she was out of line without stooping to her level and resorting to name calling. I tend to freeze up and be incapable of responding when confronted by asshole behaviour like this. I suppose there was a small improvement this time because my brain seemed to at least be able to have thought of a response in the moment even if I did not say it. In the past my brain would have been just been blank with shock and I would not be able to even think of any potential response until a good deal later. I still regret not saying anything. Maybe next time I will manage to get some words out of my mouth and stand up for myself.

It is called sharing people. It can be done.

its called sharing