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Strong Is the New Skinny

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A while back, my sister posted this amazing article to her Facebook page:

Original Version: sophieologie.wordpress.c

PG Version: sophieologie.wordpress.c

The short version is: it's about a young woman who was skinny but couldn't do basic things like open jars of pickles and such. Her conclusion was: it's not the size and weight, it's the health of your body and your strength.

I got a cold hard slap in the face with this when I did my 5 mile bike ride a few weeks ago. I was at my lowest adult weight ever (~165 pounds, barely overweight on the BMI), and I struggled to carry my bike and to ride up hills (oh, and constantly had kids a third my age pass me). It was clear that while I was doing great with losing the weight, I needed to be bulking up some muscles.

And then, I kinda sorta didn't do anything about it. I have made cardio a priority - working out on the treadmill or walking (even just at lunch) at LEAST 3X a week. But I haven't done any strength training whatsoever.

Part of it is that I don't have as good equipment for strength training (like weights) as I do with cardio (my fitness center has a treadmill machine) - but the fitness center DOES have a strength training machine. But most of it is I'm doing the lazy thing again. It's great that I'm exercising, training to run, watching my diet, drinking my water but if I really want to embrace "Strong is the new skinny", I need to step it up. If I want to build muscle, I need to start working out my arms. If I want to improve tone, then I need to get some weights.

Because I don't want to be one of those girls who is skinny and has to ask someone to open jars or lift boxes or do anything of the sort for her. Last night, I struggled to open a bottle of Powerade and almost had to hand it to my sister to open. (I want to think it was more that my hands were greasy than I lacked the strength to open it...) Not a fun thing for someone independent like myself.

I love this new "Strong Is the New Skinny" campaign. It focuses not on your weight and pants size but on being healthy and active and independent. And that's exactly the kind of girl I wanna be.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • TINYRN2011
    Wow, what a great blog at the right time! I too have neglected pretty much any strength training; choosing to focus on walking and eating healthier.

    You continue to inspire!
    1541 days ago
    There's a difference between Strength Training and Weight Training. There's a whole world of strength training that can be done with just our body weight. Don't wait to buy weights!

    1541 days ago
  • KANOE10
    I think it is a great article and a great movement. I wish I had done strength training growing up. I found it interesting that she gained 26 pounds of muscle but only went up two sizes.

    Thanks for sharing.
    1542 days ago
  • MUFFIY831
    Good point, and as someone else has pointed out never underestimate the power of body weight exercises. Lunges, squats, push ups, chair dips, burpees, etc. You're doing great, and the ST will just make it that much better!
    1542 days ago
    Your sister is a very talented writer! Great article :)

    You both make very good points!
    1542 days ago
    Muscle will help you lose weight - it burns more calories. It fills out some of the loose skin. Muscle is a very good thing. emoticon
    Loved the article !!
    1542 days ago
  • TIGER_LILY_613
    Amen to that ! emoticon

    I LOVE THE ARTICLE. I'm going to share it on Facebook. People need to read it and share it. This is important for women to know. Thank you for sharing this.

    1542 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/30/2013 11:22:20 PM
    i have a set of dumbells at home that I use. Sparkpeople has a workout generator that you can tell body part (core, arms, ect), time, and equipment that you have, and it will give you the exercises to do. i love it!
    1542 days ago
    As usual you are exactly right. Some strength training will also help lose pounds a little quicker. A great blog as usual!!

    Dumbells and resistance bands are available at reasonable prices in many places and are small so you can use them at home. That is what I do, allows me to spend time at home instead of a sweaty gym with a lot of muscular experts lol. Also resistance bands are lightweight and easy to pack when you're traveling.

    Strong is way better than skinny!

    1542 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon & emoticon
    1542 days ago
  • CHERYLA2012
    emoticon Love this!
    1542 days ago
    Yes! I agree and I love that you are embracing the "Strong is the new Skinny" motto!

    You can get creative with strength training. You body weight (think push-ups, burpees, etc.) is also a good way to strengthen your muscles. I feel certain that SP has some articles about doing strength training without fancy equipment. Best of luck on your new strength training goal.
    1542 days ago
    I'm not sure if you've lined up a program, but if you're serious about building strength, you may want to give this a read.

    1542 days ago
    I'm currently doing JNL Fusion. JNL definitely states this throughout the workout that "Strong is the new skinny". May we all continue to remember this throughout our weight loss journey!
    1542 days ago
    thanks for reminding me it's not just about the number on the scale emoticon
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1542 days ago
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    1542 days ago
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