Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Oh really?: "Plus-Size Friendly Gym" Bans Skinny People

So, this is...interesting:

(via Time)

For some gymgoers, a plethora of thin, peppy gym rats can prove to be too big of an obstacle to overcome. That’s why Body Exchange, a Vancouver-based gym, has made a bold business move and banned skinny people from their establishments in the hopes of fostering a friendly work-out environment for a primarily plus-size clientele.

Body Exchange isn’t the only gym to launch a weight-based policy. According to the New York Daily News, similar rules exist at gyms like Buddha Body Yoga in New York City and Downsize Fitness, which has branches in Las Vegas, Chicago and Dallas. Marty Wolff, a former competitor on the reality show  The Biggest Loser, owns and operates Square One in Omaha, Nebraska which caters to people who aim to lose 50 pounds or more. ”Clients want a place where they can get fit without feeling like they’re being stared at or criticized,” he told the Daily News. “My whole life, I have always wished there was a place for other big people. So I created one.” 
Read more: http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/06/21/plus-size-friendly-gym-bans-skinny-people/#ixzz1ywuP8fvE

I'm torn.  I can understand a need for a safe space where people can feel comfortable working out, but I think it contributes to the us-versus-them dialogue that sometimes pops up during discussions about weight loss.  (Check out the comments on the article.)  Erika at A Black Girl's Guide to Weight Loss raised great points on this:
Five things really made me uncomfortable while reading this: 1) the idea that “skinny, healthy people” being around is a problem; 2) the implied assumption that “skinny” and “healthy” are one in the same; 3) the idea that there’s something wrong with being a “peppy gym rat;” 4) the belief that the answer to people being “fearful” about becoming active is to create a space where the thing that so many people want… is unwelcome; and 5) the idea that it’s only “skinny, healthy” people are the only ones doing the staring and ostracizing.
What happens to the clients once they reach their fitness/weight goals?  Or, is this going to be one of those places that doesn't actually encourage people to reach their goals?  (This is about making money after all.)

I'm curious to see how long this business model lasts.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Get Inspired: Fit Seniors

Okay, folks, it's been a while since I've posted a "Tuesday Inspiration."  It's also Thursday, but if I don't share this now, I might burst from all of the awesome.

via Colorlines: 64-Year-Old Great-Grandmother Takes Second Place at Bikini Contest

Ruby Carter-Pikes is 64, and she placed second in the FitSciences Championships.  From the post:
"It's like showing people age is only a number and you don't have to get cut up or do anything crazy, just be healthy and take care of your body."

Monday, June 18, 2012

Dash4Dad 4-Mile Race Round-Up

My dad starting running in 2011.  He routinely strength trained, but cardiovascular exercise was never really his thing until I suggested running the Run with Dad 5K last year in Reston.  I felt an incredible sense of pride when we crossed the finish line together.  After that race, Dad caught the running bug and has raced 3 5Ks over the last year.

This Father's Day, Dad and I decided to run the Dash4Dad 4-Miler.

Sunday was an absolutely perfect day to run.  I hadn't raced since Providence, so I was itching to see what I could do after my month off from intense training.  Dad and I started together, but I found my happy pace quickly and went with it.  (We registered as a team, and Dad and I discussed that I should run ahead if I wanted to and was able to run faster.)  The course was very similar to the Love the Run You're With 5K, with a modified start and finish location.  After the first hill, I pushed faster but felt very comfortable.

At the turnaround, I tried to see if I could spot my dad on the course.  I didn't, but figured that he wasn't much farther behind.  With the finish line in sight, I made a final push and crossed the finish line.  My dad -- awesomely -- was less than a minute behind.

The race by the numbers:
Gun Time: 36:42

Net Time: 36:10
Average Pace: 9:03

Net Time: 37:01
Average Pace: 9:16

Among Father-Daughter Teams (by daughter's age group), Dad and I placed 5th, with an average time of 36:36:01.  What an amazing way to spend Father's Day morning!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Disney Princess Running Gear? Yes, Please!!

Sometimes, I feel like the internet knows exactly what I want.

I spotted this yesterday on Fashionably Geek and The Mary Sue: Disney Princess running attire from the Etsy shop This Princess Runs

Does this item come with Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather -- just in case I need a color change? (image source)

The designer also has an amazing Wonder Woman running costume at her shop.  Now, don't get me wrong -- I love the Disney Princess franchise and would love to tear up a marathon dressed as my favorite, but think about how much more awesome it would be to tear up the same course dressed as Wonder Woman!

I'm going to exercise a bit of restraint and hold off on spending all of my extra money on running costumes. For now...

Friday, June 15, 2012

New Shoes!

I'm moving on to my sixth pair of the Mizuno Wave Alchemy running shoe.  I do wish Mizuno would get around to changing the color combination.

Time to break these in and train for Marathon No. 4!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Weekend on the Jersey Shore

I spent the weekend at a friend's beach house in New Jersey.  It was lovely to get away from DC for a few days, and I'm finding it hard to acknowledge that I have work in the morning after spending my days lounging around and eating delicious food. 

I packed my running shoes and put in a few miles on Saturday morning along the boardwalk.  This run, more than any run that I've done since finishing in Providence, has gotten me in the mood to plan my fall training and get ready for the Marine Corps Marathon in October.  Maybe it was the scenery...