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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.




Sunday Reading #13

Good Morning!

Life has been extremely cool as of late. Super Strength Health has gained a lot of momentum, and I’ve had the ability to show my face in a very exciting project (which you’ll read about in this post-don’t worry)! Stepping away from teaching in a formal way has opened up the opportunity to teach on a much more individual level and I am feeling significantly more fulfilled and self-motivated to get out there and help people feel as awesome as they can. In turn, I feel pretty awesome myself.

Neat how that works out.

Couple of house keeping things: Saturday Reading is now Sunday Reading, because, WOAH, I’m usually pretty busy on Saturdays and I imagine other folks are too. ALSO the wonderful folks at Fern House Co.  have made my website responsive, thus meaning it should look awesome on any device. Ahhhhh. That feels good.

Onto the links!

1) Definition : Strength and Training for Ladies – edited by Christy Morgan

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This magazine is written for vegan women who lift weights, which could not be more perfect for a babe like myself.  When I saw the first issue I knew it was important that there be a voice out there that talks about healthy vegan weight gain via weight lifting. For some reason I was a little nervous for that voice to be me.

So. I sent them an email saying “Hey guys, have you ever thought about doing this kind of story?” to which they responded “Here’s how to submit.”

WELL. I suppose that DOES make sense.

So my story is in there, and I am extremely proud of the work I put in to get to a point to write about weight gain with pride, happy with the writing, and stoked to be amongst the other amazing ladies in the issue. Coincidentally, my vegan gluten-free Caesar salad with Miso Dijon glazed tempeh and Polenta Croutons  also won in the “most innovative” category of their salad contest.  I like winning stuff. It feels awesome.

2) The Anti Diet Project by Kelsey Miller 

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The Anti-Diet project is amazing. It is a series of posts (that I believe is ever-expanding!) over at Refinery29 that explores one awesome women’s experience with Intuitive Eating. With article titles like “Just Eat the Christmas Cookies Like a Normal Person, Please”, “Why Intuitive Eating Could Change the World”, “7 Diet Lies you Probably Believe” and “Breakfast with the Diet Rebel” why would you not want to read? This lady is sassy, honest, and exploring some deep stuff as she recovers from chronic dieting. Get at it!

 3) Grilled Polenta and Zucchini Salsa- by Jeanine at Love and Lemons 

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To me, this is a perfect Summer recipe. It is vegan and gluten-free, involves the GRILL (a must for summer time) and even includes an option for milling your own cornmeal (which I did, because that’s how I roll.) When I made it I included some roasted chickpeas with the zucchini slaw (because, protein, I like it.) and it brought the dawn of the season straight to my mouth.


4) The Unspoken Downside of Training for Performance by Nia Shanks 

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I love Nia Shanks. She is one of the very first bloggers I found that emphasized a focus on exercise performance as opposed to physique, and encourages short, high intensity work outs as opposed to long steady-state cardio. This concept for how to exercise is total normal to me now (Thanks Grassroots Crossfit!) but at one point and time it was REVOLUTIONARY. short, performance focused exercise changed my life.


In this article Nia talks about potential downsides of exercise for performance. Type A personality types (like, ahem, me, and half the people I know) can take exercise goals just a weeeeee bit far. As someone who has fallen down a rabbit hole of compulsive exercise in the past, it’s pretty easy to see transference with weight lifting. It could easily be like this: “Didn’t get a PR on my deadlift? I’M THE WORST!”. Instead, Nia reminds us to chill out. Some days we won’t beat our formal exercise records. Some times we are tired. Some times our body needs rest. That’s cool. Do it for the experience, and generally, you will improve. A great reminder.

5) Citizen Radio by Allison Kilkenny and Jamie Kilstein 

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Citizens Radio is the best. Allison Kilkenny is a journalist and Jamie Kilstein is a comedien and when it comes to the world of podcasting, that is an excellent combination. The two of them release podcasts five days a week with unfiltered, unsponsored news. This means the listener (me! you!) gets the facts without having to wonder if a corporation sponsored the opinion. My love for citizens radio has taken me from being a general political not-know-much to a kind-of-know-a-lot. I feel like I am a better person because I am informed- all due to Citizen’s Radio.

The whole she-bang is FREE and clearly quite time intensive. Listen to their podcast, buy their book, donate to their show. And for goodness sakes, don’t forget to enjoy it a little.

Happy Sunday!