Hey guys,

There really isn't much of a central topic for this post; this is more of a hodgepodge of things that I wanted to bring up. I couldn't figure out how to incorporate some of the news that I have into lessons or creative - err, "creative" - poems, so I'll just lay it out here. So a few notes:

  • I've been forced to hit the brakes on the dieting for the time being. I have a lot going on in my life right now, what with graduation quickly approaching in less than two months (Will I make it? Only time will tell). On top of that, I'm taking another full load of classes this quarter, I'm spending increasingly more time working on my business, and I'm re-igniting my spiritual life (this last one is very important to me). I've stopped weighing my food or counting calories because it was starting to become another obligation, and consequently an added source of stress. I'm trying to minimize that right now.
  • Along the same lines, I've decided to take a training break. I was standing outside in the blistering California heat yesterday giving a Human Biology presentation for an hour (because damn it, I want my degree!), and I was thinking about how much I was not looking forward to training later that afternoon. It struck me just how much I was dreading it until I remembered that I hadn't taken a training break of any kind since December 2011. I'm a believer that it's healthy to take some time off from the gym every couple of months. I think I was getting mentally burnt out, and it's never a good thing when you stop enjoying doing something you normally love. So I decided to skip the weights and instead spend that time relaxing and focusing on other tasks - and I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off from my shoulders. Huh. That's when I knew that I'd made the right decision. Whether it will be 10 days, 2 weeks, or a full month off - I don't know yet. I'm not worried in the least about losing strength or any appreciable muscle mass because in the grand scheme of things, 30 days away from lifting versus a lifetime of pushing and pulling heavy things... it's really not that much time if you think about it. I'll get in my activity by walking whenever I can and going on the occasional hike.
  • Yesterday, Keith Lai e-mailed me to inform me that I've been nominated as a Top Social Media Fitness Blogger on his site. I was floored to think that I'd even be considered to rank in the top 50. I'm still a shriveled-up fetus when it comes to fitness writing, so to say that this came as a surprise to me is an understatement.  For half a second I felt pressure to crank out 5 more articles overnight just to say, "Hey you guys - I have lots of content on here! Check it out!" but not only is that not feasible, but I wouldn't be being true to myself either. If you've been enjoying my posts and I've positively influenced your life in any way, shape, or form, feel free to head over to to this link and vote for me.
  • On a related note - and I know that not everyone will agree with me on this - but I have a real problem with marketing douchebags. Well, okay, let me rephrase that. If you don't hide the fact that you're very much into marketing in the fitness industry, then that's fine. You choose to occupy that space and that's partly what you'll be known for. But to pretend to be anti-marketing and to shit on those who spend their time trying to get more followers and then secretly go behind everyone's back and pay money to garner more fake "fans," uhh - really? If you can't win over people's approval based off of your authentic voice and the quality content you can provide, I think it's embarrassing to stoop so low so as to feign popularity. Can you be anymore lame?
  • I had one of my clients e-mail me the other day very concerned about her own health. You see, she'd been working with me for about six weeks, but her weight had hardly budged. "I really think I need to go see a doctor to find out if there's something wrong with my body," she wrote to me. Her dietary adherence had been stellar and her workouts had been going very well. She'd been thrilled just a few days prior because she was finally fitting into medium size shorts for the first time in years. She was so focused on the number on the scale, however, that she'd completely overlooked the fact that she'd lost over 6 inches off of her waist in the meantime - dropping from 34- to 28-inches in no time. This is an altogether too common phenomenon in which individuals discount the tremendous progress they've made in reaching their health/aesthetic goals solely based on their bodyweight. For beginners especially - but also for more advances trainees who do things correctly - it's not unusual to experience simultaneous fat loss and muscle gain (recomposition). This can mean that bodyweight decreases very slowly, remains stagnant, or even increases slightly. Do not be alarmed, and certainly don't give up. This is why I detest the scale as a measure of progress; really it doesn't tell you much of anything. Instead, stand in front of the mirror naked and take a good look at yourself. Do you like what you see? If not, you haven't reached your goal yet.
  • I'm a fan of glutes. I wasn't always a fan of hip thrusts, however - until I tried them out for the first time last week. Now I'm hooked. Credit goes to Bret Contreras (aka the Glute Whisperer) for this gem and the inspirational post on women hip thrusting 225lbs. I avoided them for a long time because I thought the movement looked awkward and didn't want to make a fool of myself at the gym. But really, they're all kinds of awesome. They'll be incorporated into my training program from here on out. Maybe one day I'll be inducted into the Sexy 225lb Hip Thrust Club?
  • I came across this video the other day and I got goosebumps all over. This isn't exactly related to fitness per se, but I wanted to share it with you guys nonetheless. I think that too often, the efforts and the unconditional love of our parents - namely our moms - are overlooked. I know that no matter what I do or how successful (or not) I am, my mom will be a lifetime fan of mine, and she will give, give, and continue to give without asking for anything in return. For this I am forever grateful. Love you, mom.
  • Lastly, I was contacted by Ines Subashka the other day and she asked to interview me for her website. Why, I'm flattered! Anyway, part 1 of the interview is now up and I encourage you to check it out. The focus of the interview is largely on my eating disorder history and all the hoopla surrounding that.

That's all for now. I hope you guys have a great weekend. Eat lots of steak, get in some mobility work if you can, and catch up on some sleep. Oh, and send me pictures of cute puppies? Thanks.