Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/content/70/9230970/html/blog/wp-content/themes/sassafras/library/functions/core.php on line 32

Sunday Reading #15

Happy Sunday, non-gender-specific dudes and dudettes!

My garden is poppin’  right now, and I want to tell you all about it. Right now I am growing celery, kale, romaine lettuce, leeks, green beans, heirloom tomatoes, and zucchini. My roommate has a big section of strawberries and blueberries, cucumbers, potatoes, artichokes, and more lettuce and kale. We also have an avocado tree and passion fruit vine that said roommate is insistent will yield some fruit, but to be real with you, I just don’t know. It’s Oakland, not Hawaii.

But I digress.

Having a garden is just about the sweetest thing ever, something I really wanted last year before I firestormed all my cute little plant starts in a blaze of over-attention turned to neglect. This year things are different (someone picks up my slack when I forget to water) and holy hell, is life good. Growing my own food makes me want to move to Southern California, where I could grow all of the produce all of the time. (but then I remember how when I used to visit Southern California all the time people in the gym would be in full makeup talking about calorie counts and grams of carbs, or wearing head to toe garbage bag suits and running on treadmills on 100 degree days. Nahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Not for me.)

ANYWAY! Here are some things I liked this week:

1) Thinking about bodies, loving them, and where we’re investing our energy by Cheryl Madliger at Healthy is the New Wealthy

Super Strength Health Sunday Reading #15 (1)

This post asks this question: Could body love advocates be using their energy to be more personally empowered in other ways? What does a focus on the body do to us and the people around us? Why is funneling energy toward loving our body necessary? Excellent food for thought!

2) The Mountains are Calling by Anna at The Nourishing Journey 

Super Strength Health Sunday Reading #15 (4)

So. I am 100% obsessed with the Pacific Crest Trail (a 2,660 mile trail on the West Coast that goes from Mexico all the way up to Canada). My very good friend Carrot Quinn  is in the process of her second walk up the trail and for the past two years I have hung on her every word about the journey. This post is not from Carrot, but instead from a vegan woman named Anna, preparing to make that same journey. Because I know (KNOW!) I will walk that trail someday, it is super wonderful and important for me to hear about a woman doing it on a vegan diet. I can’t wait to see how it goes!

3) Drive Series: Motivation for Reps by Holly Noll for the Definition for ladies weblog

Super Strength Health Sunday Reading #15 (2)

Holly is one of the incredibly fabulous women behind Definition Magazine. This article is super real, discussing the transition from training for aesthetic purposes to training to compete. She talks about eating more to lift heavier, watching her body get larger on purpose after a weight loss journey. I totally related to this post (although I do not, and probably will not ever compete) and I really appreciated the succinct nature of her candor.

4) Vida Vegan Con 2015 Application 

Super Strength Health Sunday Reading #15 (5)

Vida Vegan Con is an ALL VEGAN BLOGGER CONFERENCE (!!!) that will take place in Austin, TX in May of 2015. Their deadline for speaker applications is July 9th, which means it is soon, but you still totally have time to formulate your proposal. Today I finished an application to co-facilitate two workshops with the incredibly amazing Raechel of Rebel Grrl Kitchen and my fingers are so, so crossed. I love public speaking, and this conference is the absolute perfect outlet for my urge to talk to crowds. (ALSO, do you want me to give a speech at your college/high school/office/etc.? I CAN DO THAT. I enjoy discussing body image, self-esteem, vegan sources of protein, lifting heavy, eating for energy, feminism, etc.)

The Obvious Child written and directed by Gillian Robespierre

This is a romantic comedy about an abortion. First of all, rom-coms, I love ’em. Second of all, abortion is in the mainstream, and not painted as a huge life ruiner. BIG STEPS FORWARD. I literally cried the entire time I watched this movie, not because it was super sad (it was actually pretty funny) but because I think that just the fact that this movie exists is a big step forward for feminism.

Have a great end-of-weekend!

Sunday Reading #14

Good Morning!

It has been a good, good week over at Super Strength Health. Before I could even sneeze, my first month of Summer vacation has gone by, and my brain is going a million miles an hour. This has been quite a productive season so far! I am putting the finishing touches on a few very cool projects (think book proposal and a gluten-free challenge program) and am in the baby stages of planning some big stuff for the future that I can’t quite talk about yet.

I really like being a health and wellness coach, have I mentioned that?

Yeah, probably.

Moving on!

Why the Number Don’t Mean a Thing & The Method to my Madness by Christy Morgan of The Blissful Chef


Christy Morgan is the powerhouse behind Definition Magazine. She is vegan, a cookbook author, a personal trainer, and just an all around powerful babe who I want to be around.

This article is about the dreaded numbers. She says: “The new “Fitspiration” movement is not helping women be any less obsessive. It’s a big pet-peeve when personal trainers and physique competitors talk about their numbers or their clients numbers all the time like they mean something. For the average person we do not need to dwell on the numbers. And they can be triggers for those who have disordered eating patterns or an obsessive nature. It’s important that trainers and coaches steer their clients into how they feel rather than how they look and use other methods to track progress than just the number on the scale. I wish physique competitors would stop telling average people what they do while getting ready for a competition because that isn’t what the average person should be doing.”

AAAAAA-men. There are a ton of beautifully sculpted amazing competitors out there, and I find the whole process of how they get that way to be, I dunno, triggering. Not like for me personally, but for the universe. I get it. You have to do crazy things to get those muscles to pop out. Probably the masses don’t need to know every excruciating detail. It can make a girl feel crazy to hear that someone measured their broccoli and avoided water for a couple of days, ya know?

10 Things No One Tells You About Being a Female Strength Athlete by Gabby at Gabby’s Gluten Free


It takes a lot of guts to get out there and be a lady lifting decidedly unladylike amounts of weight. Some people applaud you, sure, but others say all sorts of asinine and ridiculous bullshit. Read all about that in this article, and don’t be surprised if you laugh, then cry, then feel a little proud.

Modern Women Etsy Shop- by Sarah Faith Gottesdiener


I would own every single item in this etsy shop. Feminist Art was instrumental to my upbringing, a sort of theoretical mom to guide and shape my brain. Basically, feminist art is about the best thing ever. These posters (T-shirts, totebags, post cards) say so, in no uncertain terms.

Vegan Doctor Weighs In on Paleo Diet Claims- by Holly Wilson, MD


I understand why people eat Paleo. I understand that aspects of it are healthy (lots of plants, zero processed foods and no sugar? I am all about that). I also think that it is unsustainable, and that a lot of the theory is rooted in speculation. (I’m not saying my diet is perfect in comparison, it’s simply an observation.) Please go read this article to read a ton of detail about why.

Can I Talk Yet? Written by Rhiannon Flowers


Rhiannon is hilarious. I met her many years ago in Portland, OR and have been a huge fan of her writing ever since. This is her brand new blog, and it is full of the stuff that makes me laugh my butt off.

In this story:

The characters: Rhiannon, an angsty Riot Grrl, and her oh-so-serene hippie lady mom

The scene: Family vacation at a nude hot spring

The result: Hilarity ensues.




Saturday Reading #4

Ahhhhh, the weekend.

This week was my first back to teaching after my spring break and OH DAMN is teaching a shot to the ass. My students have boundless energy and present me with endless ideas and challenges. It’s either thrilling or terrifying depending on how you choose to look at it. (I think I’ll go with thrilling) and let’s just say I am a litttttle tired. I have six more weeks in the school year left and then an entire summer to focus on Super Strength Health, but until then I’m going double duty as a teacher and a health coach. It is exhausting and fulfilling and keeps me on my toes.

What I’m trying to say here is, I am incredibly happy to have a bit of time and space to just peruse the Internet at my leisure and share what I find with you. This week we have an incredible soup recipe, a playlist, information about a beautiful new show opening in NYC, a comic, and last but not least, a wallop of an article that is beautifully written and full of unadulterated raw tough love.

The project of linking you, dear readers, to amazing women and queers of the web has been incredibly joyful for me, something that has opened my eyes to all sorts of wonderful things. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity, and happy reading!

1) Corn and cauliflower soup with avocados and tomatoes from Emily at This Rawsome Vegan Life.

This week Emily of This Rawsome Vegan Life has been on a liquid cleanse with her partner, and she is doing us a solid by detailing her feasts in excellent detail. I am extremely weary of liquid cleanses (it seems to me that “detoxing” is often just code for “lose weight very quickly”) but this one seems good to me in terms of sustenance and calorie intake. (Emily is drinking juices, nut milks, green smoothies and pureed soups in an effort to give her digestion a break, which I can understand as a person who has suffered from gut problems. It appears that she is getting adequate calories while doing this, while some cleanses I see seem like not enough. I’m just a person on the internet with no idea about anyone’s DNA or activity level, so who am I too judge, but I dunno….my something’s-not-quite-right senses tingle a lot of the time when I see liquid cleanses) ANYWAY, off my soap box and back to the soup.

This post contains many recipes, but the corn and cauliflower soup with avocados and tomatoes really blew my mind. I made it to share with my partner, who has had an intense dental time this month and basically going on a non-voluntary liquid cleanse of his own. The recipe is extremely simple, and contains no oil or salt and literally bursts with flavor. I enjoyed mine with some grilled tempeh and olives for garnish it was filling, satisfying and delicious. I highly recommend you make it.

2) Cover Me playlist from Rookie Magazine


Each Friday Night Rookie Magazine releases a playlist for it’s readers and I LOVE THEM. This one is from a few months back and is exclusively new covers of old songs.

Rookie says: “The best cover songs tell you something you didn’t know. They surprise you, and make you see the original song in a new way. In some cases, like Fiona’s version of “Across the Universe,” they make it impossible to listen to the original ever again.” That’s quite a statement, eh? Give the playlist a listen and you be the judge.

3) Split and Growing- an art show opening at Bureau of General Services- Queer Division at 83A Hester St., New york, New York.


I have known Ketch for quite some time (6 years? 7 years?) and it has been amazing to watch him grow as an artist as we age. His latest show (Which opens TOMORROW, my dudes, and hangs until May 25th!) is a departure from his previous work that I have seen, in the way that it is significantly more personal and vulnerable.

Here is the gallery’s description: “Split + Growing is a new, highly personal exhibit of work from transfeminist painter and illustrator Ketch Wehr. Primarily illustrative gouache paintings, Wehr’s show explores his personal understanding of his gender and queerness from an early age through the lens of synesthesia. Synesthesia is a condition which, in his case, lends colors and flavors to all letters and words. Split + Growing is the visual display of an evolving queer selfhood through the colors Wehr knew to be part of his identity before he had the words to describe it.”

The first time I read the description I teared up. As my friends and I hang out in our thirties we are starting to positively KILL IT with our creativity, our output and our inspiring vulnerability. If you are in New York please go to the opening and enjoy it a little extra for me.

4) Fat is Not a Feeling by Corinne Mucha

fat is not a feeling

In the past I often found myself attributing exhaustion, anger, sadness, discomfort, and even intense excitement to feeling “fat”. This adorable comic calls out the incredibly obvious fact that fat is not a feeling, and furthermore, it asks you to give your mental real estate up to more important things.

Corinne writes: “fat”  is a sensation of monitoring how much space you take up, and then judging it. We equate judgment with virtue. As long as we are monitoring our bodies we are being “good”.

HOLY SHIT, DID THAT LITTLE CARTOON JUST DROP A BRAIN BOMB. It is not as if hating our bodies makes us better, stronger, faster, wiser, kinder, or more effective in the world. Hating our body mires us in fear, keeps us trapped, ties us to a beauty ideal that we did not choose and isn’t in our best interest.

And with that I bring you……

5) Empty Bellies Do Not Beget Genius by Gala Darling


Gala Darling a fashion blogger who talks candidly about her eating disorder recovery, feminism and radical self love. What the whaaaaat? Fashion blogger AND radical!? I love this combination. This article is hard-hitting in it’s frankness, made me smile and laugh and cry a little and cheer.

A quote: “A hungry girl is an ineffectual girl. A hungry girl is a girl sapped of energy, strength, life-force. A hungry girl can’t achieve anything, fix anything, come up with a bold, brave solution. Choosing to go hungry is a way of subjugating your own strength, your own power. It is a way of making yourself small & useless. It is asking someone else to take care of you. It is about giving up, giving in.”

WOW. That encapsulates so much of my mission as a health coach in one paragraph. It is also said extremely eloquently, and Gala looked absolutely incredible as she typed it, I’m sure. Read this woman’s work! Watch her Ted Talk! Buy her programs on blogging, business and radical self love! I am so freaking inspired right now that I cant! Stop! Using! Exclamation points!

Sorry, enthusiasm overload. These link lists really do it for me, you guys. I just can’t help myself. See you next week!