Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"Sport makes you whole."

Bob Babbitt in his speech at the start of my race this weekend said,

"I believe that sport makes you whole."

I never really thought about it but it is so true. If I didn't have sports, fitness, athletics, a way to move my body and do something or achieve something I would feel incomplete. This organization that I was racing to raise money for, Challenged Athletes Foundation, gives people who have had sports taken away from them by having no legs or missing an arm or being paraplegic or quadriplegic or in my niece's case having cerebral palsy and not being able to participate in sport or fitness as most people do, the very thing that makes many of us whole.

This organization gets these individuals what they need to compete and to be an athlete. It was amazing to see these challenged athletes pushing their limits with sport and getting the feeling of achieving something. Many of them had bikes especially made for their disability, in the swim they had a partner either that they held their feet or that helped them to swim and a number of them have running legs which are prosthetic legs to run on. There were also two 8 year old boys who were double amputee, with no legs who did the kids swim and their dads grabbed them when they finished seeing their son for the first time accomplish a sport- it was so emotional.

I was with a guy on the bike most of the way who had one arm and this was his first triathlon and he was having a blast and so excited to be a part of it. He did the mile swim, the 56 mile ride and the half marathon. Imagine riding a bike with one arm. I know it seems like, with one arm you could do it but your balance and everything has to be off. He was kicking my butt though.

Sport makes you whole really means a lot more after seeing all of these people be a part of sports and athletics when something as simple as jump roping at school with the other kids may have never been an option for them. It also makes me appreciate being able to participate in an event like this and that I am able to do a Half Ironman and can do whatever I want physically. It reminds me not to take advantage of that or take advantage of the feeling of being able to do a sport and accomplish something physically.

Thank you for the amazing, inspiring event CAF! I was honored to be a part of it and look forward to it next year.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Doing it for the experience....

This weekend I am participating in an event that I am so excited about the experience and being a part of something so special. It is the first time that I am going in to a race without a set time I want to hit. I haven't been totally Type A about my training like I usually am. I am really just looking forward to going and being a part of the event and being inspired by the others participating.

This morning I took my bike out for a 10 mile spin to make sure it's ready to go and spin my legs out a bit and the whole ride all I could think about was how honored I am that I can go and do this race which is a Half Ironman (1 mile swim, 56 mile bike and a half marathon) event among other's who are passionate about making a difference for someone and that it really doesn't matter what my time is as long as I give it 100% and bring everything I have.

You see this race is a fundraiser for the Challenged Athletes Foundation. I have raised money for the foundation and in honor of my niece who is 7 years old and has cerebral palsy. She will be able to take advantage of what the Challenged Athletes Foundation offers and be a part of the experience. This makes this race especially special to me.

It is really a different amazing feeling to truly be going to the race to enjoy the day and be a part of the experience. I am looking forward to it! Stay tuned for my recap next week...

If you want to make a last minute donation go to my website at-http://sdtc09.kintera.org/rachel

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Awesome stuff on Body Image- A Revolution!

Did you see this story or hear about this picture of Lizzie Miller? It is so awesome what it has created- women who have realized that they they have to stop body bashing. In my book, The Female Body Breakthrough....coming out very soon....one of the Fit Female Credo's is to Stop Body Bashing and Celebrate your Strengths! I love this article which goes right along with the message I am trying to get out.

Seeing this story and what Glamour magazine is doing with it is awesome!

They are starting a revolution to finally end all of the negative dialogue going on in women's heads.

When I started writing my book over a year ago it was originally supposed to be a book about strength training for women but as I got into the book and interviewing my clients and other women I realized it wasn't about strength training at all. Strength training was just the form of exercise that is most effective to help women to change the way they feel about their bodies, think about their bodies and treat their bodies. My book went from being a book about strength training to a complete mindset, nutrition and training overhaul for women.

We currently run Skinny Jeans Challenges at our gym. The big key to this is that these aren't skinny jeans the style which the average woman doesn't fit in or look good in, and I don't even like the word "skinny." But these are YOUR Skinny Jeans. Every woman has a pair of "Skinny Jeans" in her closet, for some these might be size 6, others size 12 or 14 and of course a pair of Fat Jeans. I don't care what size YOUR skinny jeans are but when you are in them- you feel like a million bucks!

The interesting thing is that the average woman is a size 12-14. Yet, many of the fancy designer clothing brands max out at their biggest size being a 10, maybe a 12. Hopefully this revolution will have an affect on these clothing designers to start making clothes for real women with curves. Having a strong, toned butt is a very good thing!

For most people their skinny jeans will not be and will never be a size 2 or a size 4 realistically without starving themselves or doing some crazy fast...I know for me my skinny jeans are a size 8. When I am creeping up into my 10's I know I need to tighten things up. But I do not beat myself up to get into a size 4 because that is the ideal. Plus I feel great in my size 8 Skinny Jeans- I am fit, I am strong and I can actually eat and don't have to be consumed by workouts or counting calories or grams of food!

I have had clients go from a size 22 to a size 16 and feel sexier than ever and their confidence in themselves skyrocketed! They were so excited to be able to go shopping and not go to the Plus size section. THAT is what it is all about- feel confident and sexy in your own skin and finding the right type of exercise and nutrition to help you to feel that way in YOUR skinny Jeans no matter what size they are.

In my book I call them Thermometer Jeans. They tell you if you are hot or not. I am hoping we can rename them to be our thermometer jeans instead of calling them "skinny" jeans once my book comes out. The key is to keep your thermometer jeans close by, wear them once a week and make sure you are still HOT in your thermometer jeans. When you start to stuff them back in your closet and pull out the baggy clothes you know you need to get back to your workouts and fueling your body with healthy food.

Stop the body bashing once and for all and thank you to Lizzie Miller and Glamour Magazine for opening our eyes that we can feel confident, sexy and good about ourselves even if we aren't a size zero.