Fitbabe’s post about eating disorders has prompted me to think about patterns of food consumption, something of particular interest to me because these days I am food. Continue reading
How hard is that? Food is fuel silly.
If it were only that easy. I hate being hungry. I really hate being full. I am afraid of food. But food is fuel, right?
When people are afraid of food they have strange eating patterns. We will decide, for example, that there are six foods that are safe. At least, that is what I did. Continue reading
I have been watching a lot of TV lately, mostly while breastfeeding my baby boy. Once I get the hang of this new and repeated activity, I can no doubt do something more productive while nursing, like reading collections of short stories. [Aside: I am currently obsessed with figuring out how to write short stories that aren't total crap]. Back to TV: While lying prone in a hospital bed last week, recovering from surgery with a mewling newborn nestled on my chest, I began to watch random programs that I had never seen before, including one called My 600-Pound Life. My initial reaction was probably commonplace: fascination mixed with equal parts of horror and empathy. Continue reading
“Why do I do this to myself?” I ask, not for the first time, as I attempt to stand in tree pose. It’s not that I find hot yoga hard, but that I find it boring. Or rather, boring AND hard. Continue reading
Pregnancy has not changed my life that much, so far. It has, however, attracted more than a few remarks from both acquaintances and strangers. My increasingly evident belly—I am scheduled to give birth by induction in only a few days—leads people to believe that they know something about me and my future. While I vowed not to blog too much about my “ladylike” pregnancy (i.e. it is conformist in a way that reminds me of Edwardian pantaloons), I have a few funny incidents that I cannot resist sharing with you. Continue reading
After taking my master’s degree at the University of the Philippines (College of Human Kinetics), I returned to the public school system where I am currently teaching. As I try to push for some reforms in the athletic training of track and field athletes, superiors do not endorse my views. According to the biblical concept, ”no prophet is accepted in his hometown.” Because of this situation, I have decided to pursue PhD studies soon, focusing on the topic of bodybuilding. I was in high school when I first saw the Ms. Olympia competition on TV, becoming fascinated with women bodybuilders. Continue reading
The other day I received the following comment on a post called “Love of Labour Lost,” which I published on December 25, 2013. In the original post, I nastily rant against unfit people who are afraid of becoming “too muscular” by accident: Dear FFG, I really enjoy your blog and find your posts very satisfying to read, so first off, thank you! However, on the issue of bodybuilding, I must say that there seems to be a great deal of intolerance on the part of the athletes towards anyone who doesn’t agree with the aesthetic. I fully agree that the comments by the gym-goers who fear bulking up are ignorant and uninformed (and in very poor taste), but one’s body shape is a matter of personal preference. It is possible to achieve various healthy alternatives. I understand your point that there is a lack of appreciation for the hard work and time investment in achieving a muscular physique, but I find the lack of regard for someone else’s aesthetic quite jarring. Continue reading
It is the beginning of 2014, spurring many people to plan for a better future and transform themselves from dung beetles into magical butterflies. I wish them well. As for me, I am perfect already so no changes will be necessary. This is not just my opinion; I read it online, Continue reading
Hard work no longer gets much respect. That pisses me off, something easily accomplished these days. I am curmudgeonly, quick to anger as I carefully slide my swollen ankles—they are in fact cankles—across the icy sidewalks in Edmonton. Foetor is now quite large, weighing me down while Continue reading
It is too cold to cross-country ski so Kick and Glide is inside at the keyboard. I must admit that I am becoming a bit of a wuss. I prefer to ski in the blue wax zone (-1 to -10); I’ll ski in the green zone, (-10 to -15), but silver (-15 to -30) is just too darn cold. By the way, those temperatures for wax application are a generalization of the Swix company waxes. They do over-lap, so under certain conditions you might get away with using green at minus seventeen … sorry, way off topic.
I would like to come back to JMS and FFG’s questions relating to what is a positive image, or idea, of rural life. Continue reading
My name is Dan, and I am a 27-year-old male NATURAL Bodybuilder. I want to get bigger in order to compete in 2015 in the INBF (International Natural Bodybuilding and Fitness Canada Federation) show in Edmonton. I was wondering if you could explain why we have to gain fat in the off season in order to gain muscle mass? Is it possible to keep one’s weight the same and gain muscle by means of a very careful diet? Continue reading
This month has witnessed a sustained hullabaloo regarding images of “fit” women. First there was the storm of controversy surrounding the photographs of Lea-Ann Ellison, a CrossFit aficionado shown lifting weights while 8 months pregnant, discussed in my previous post. Then things really got heated when Maria Kang, a 32-year-old fitness instructor, produced a poster of her scantily clad self towering above her three young children while challenging the viewer with the taunt: “What’s Your Excuse?” Attracting millions of hits and thousands of comments, many people felt bullied by this picture of a beautiful, young, and clearly fertile woman with washboard abs. Others admired Kang’s chutzpah, declaring that those who criticized her were likely lazy, fat “haters.” Surpassing the media frenzy inspired by Ellison, Kang received international attention, even appearing on major television talk shows. Despite the sheer quantity of dialogue, for the most part it was limited to asking audiences to take sides either for or against Kang. This lack of thoughtful engagement is par for the course in today’s world of unsophisticated journalism. Yet it was also predetermined by the dominant message encoded in Kang’s self-promotional poster. Her aggressive question “calls out” a particular kind of spectator, namely someone who does not work out and therefore looks nothing like Kang. Continue reading
Photographs of Lea-Ann Ellison, an American CrossFit enthusiast, recently attracted global media attention. A reader sent me a link to the story, asking for commentary, and I am happy to oblige. While I do not want to blather on about pregnancy, especially since I am currently six-months preggo, I think that gestation is not the only issue in these images. Continue reading
After attending two conferences in as many weeks, I have learned that strangers, especially white men, feel entitled to make unsolicited comments about women’s pregnant bodies.
These men can be from all walks of life – hotel staff, airplane travelers, and conference acquaintances. Yet no matter their position, when they see a pregnant woman working or traveling alone, their response is to (a) notice the woman’s belly; (b) make a remark about it; and (c) engage in unwelcome behaviour. Continue reading
On Saturday June 01, I finished up my cardio and headed over to the Northern Alberta Bodybuilding Championships to watch PDDs and Fitbabe compete in Figure. Continue reading
This gallery contains 32 photos.
After finishing my book, which is now in the hands of external referees, I realized that many photographs—taken by the incomparable artist and designer Patrick J. Reed—could not be included in it. I think his images offer feminist interventions in the often heteronormative, … Continue reading
I have been thinking about this project for quite some time, and post here sections from the introduction to my book “Feminist Figure Girl,” written at the end of last year:
It is December 12, 2009, and I am at the gym, feeling euphoric. Continue reading