Archive for month: April, 2013

They’re baaaaaaack!

Just a smidge over a year ago, I published 50 Signs You’re a Fitness Buff and it went viral. The idea came to me because I found myself spending hours on other animated gifs sites and I realized there hadn’t been one made for fitness.

Today I bring to you a similar post, but this time, it’s just for chicks. Remember to go into this with a sense of humor and understand that the point of this is to make you maybe crack a smile. Or Two.

Most of these come to me from personal experience – some recent, others not. Ladies, I’m sure you can relate to much of what you’re about to see.

(Also, I take absolutely zero credit for any of these gifs. They’re all from whatshouldwecallme – I suggest you head on over there for a good laugh.)

Guys, I haven’t forgotten about you. After meeting Paul Mihalescu this past weekend in NYC and finding that we had a lot in common regarding not only fitness views but also character traits, life missions, and personal backgrounds, it wasn’t hard to tell that this guy was a force to be reckoned with. Though only 21, he’s quickly rising up in the fitness world, and you can bet your ass you’ll be seeing a lot more of him around. I invited him last night to put together the male version of this post, and he happy obliged. We stayed up ’till the wee hours of the morning putting the final finishing touches on these, so we hope you enjoy them.

[Tweet “Girlfriend, do you even lift? “]

Let’s find out.


In general, there’s not much that sets women and men apart when it comes to the way they should train. A chick and a dude can follow the same training program and both experience positive results. Assuming a sound and effective program, both will get stronger, experience hypertrophy, and all-around become more badass.

Obviously there are factors that set them distinctly apart – namely female vs. male psychology, expectations, gender stereotypes, etc. We won’t be discussing those things for the purposes of this particular article.

A training program tailored toward both sexes can be good. But if you want to take a program from good to great, there are a few things you should know about women. These are merely suggestions, of course, so take from this what you will.


Just as there’s no one right way to order a Starbucks drink (tall blonde roast with half&half for me, though!), there’s no one right way to go about fitness. Depending on what coach you talk to, you’ll find that different individuals prefer distinct approaches: corrective-focused, plenty of core work, no core work, density training, bodybuilding split, and what have you. I’ve tried many of them – and for the most part, they will work (albeit to varying extents) so long as you follow them consistently. A lot of self-experimentation and close observation of my clients has gotten me where I am today, where I’ve been shaping and refining my own approach to fitness.

I’ve been influenced by many other coaches, no doubt – the likes of whom include Dan John, Bret Contreras, Eric Cressey, and Martin Berkhan – so I guess you could say that my approach is a melange of bits and pieces of each of them, finished off with my own unique flavor of icing. And I can guarantee you that my beliefs regarding the optimal way to train and eat will continue to evolve over the years as science and experience nudge me in the right direction.


**WARNING: The following content contains graphic descriptions of eating disorders. My writing is in no way intended to harm or offend any individuals. Please proceed at your own risk. 

It never really goes away, you know.

It can lie dormant for years – many, many years – and gather dust in the crevices of your mind. You can shove it way back into the corner and forget about it for a while.

But it stays there, lurking in the background. Waiting for the right moment to strike, to pounce. Then you’re slammed in the side at 100mph with no idea where all this chaos came from. You’re caught off guard and you have the wind knocked out of you. Before you know it, you’re lying face down in the mud and you realize a minute too late that you’ve hit rock bottom. Again.

That’s why you always need to be aware, at least on some level.

Ana. Mia. Permanent lurkers, pretending to be your friends.

It’s a constant conscientious effort to keep them at arm’s length. You’re faced daily with a thousand and one choices about what kind of food you’re going to consume and how much, about whether you’ll exercise just a little more or call it a wrap. If you listen carefully, you can hear the barely audible whisper in your head asking you Are you sure you want to eat that? and I don’t think you’ve burned enough calories today. Everyday, you make the proactive decision that you’re going to properly fuel your body, that you’re going to workout because you enjoy feeling strong and not because you’re a slave to the demons within. With every bite of food, you fire your rounds. Each time you dab the crumbs off the corners of your mouth calmly with a napkin because you’re 80% full – instead of sprawled onto your bed with your heart pounding after you’ve stuffed yourself sick – you win a small battle. Every evening you tuck yourself under the covers without having purged that day, that’s another victory for you.


Well, I guess I’m a New Yorker now.

The streets are insane. Just me, Ollie, and Chester the mouse. What? Yeah, I just named him. He’s taken up residence in my kitchen closet for the past, oh, 10 days or so. I figured I’d be kind enough to at least give the little guy a name. What say you? To be honest, this place reminds me a lot like my original hometown of Seoul. Busy streets where a normal pace is a steady clip of 3.7mph or more; shoving and pushing are not uncommon phenomenon amongst strangers; public transportation seems to be the medium of choice for commuting to and from work. There’s no place here for lolly gaggers; no room for anyone who can’t handle a rough shove every now and then. Fortunately I’m accustomed to high energy paced life and I do think I’m adjusting quite well here, if I may say so myself.

I guess you could say that New York City is the epitome of convenience, no? And I’m all about convenience – even (especially) when it comes to dieting.



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