A while back someone used to be my Facebook friend responded to a post asking whether a size 24 model was a role model.
She said something to the effect of ‘that person should never be a role model. She is a disease laden piece of crap and you never see obese old people and there’s a reason for that.’
Except that I know this person knew someone who was obese and old. And I did too.
Grandma Helen, Ryan’s grandma lived to be 87. And in all but the last couple months of her life, she was sharp, vibrant and active. And even in those last couple months, she lobbied to get out of the hospital to attend our family Christmas party…2 weeks before she died.
By the time I met Grandma Helen, I had spent almost a decade researching obesity, physical activity and health. Everything I learned told me Grandma Helen should not have enjoyed quite the vibrant life she did.
Here is what I learned about ladies who vibrantly live until 87 from Ryan's grandma.
1. They are active. Grandma Helen went places and did things. And didn’t stop.
2. They never did boot camp for exercise. Do you know what old ladies do? Whatever they like. Walk. Garden. Play sports like golf and tennis. Movement doesn’t stress them out, it moves their lives forward. Do you ever watch old ladies mall walk? They look so happy. They chat.
3. They garden. I swear every old lady I know of had a garden and ate from it.
4. They bake cookies. They eat cookies and they do it with love. I don’t think Grandma Helenate their entire cookie jars. I never once heard either grandma reference their hips when they ate cookies…or ever.
I could go on for hours about the amount of power I give to cookies and their effects, but Grandma's treat baking cookies as a vessel of love. Because they are created, consumed and shared with love.
5. They keep their brains sharp. They played cards and games. Grandma Helen read to old people.
6. They pray. Life is stressful and hard if you believe you have to do it all by yourself. They believed that their higher power was with them and would keep them strong.
7. They were filled with Grace. In the 10 years I knew Grandma Helen, I never heard her speak ill or complain. She probably did, but it was not pervasive.
8. They didn’t complain about their bodies.
The secret is that most of these things are not confined to Ryan's grandma. These are the things that healthy people and healthy cultures do.
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You are not a fundamentally flawed human.
Even if you have lost the same 10 lbs over and over.
Even if you can't stick to a diet for more than 5 hours.
Even if you go in and out of depression.
Even if you feel like you'll never figure out your health, your success or your life.
These are not flaws in your being.
They are invitations....
✉ Invitations to let yourself feel sad or grieve for something
✉ Invitations to embrace your soul gifts
✉ Invitations to let yourself feel joy, pleasure and desire
✉ Invitations to embrace your human messiness
✉ Invitations to become who God designed you to be.
✉ Invitations to deep levels of Self love and self approval.
If you're ready to RSVP yes to these invitations, a Soul Goal Session is that place for healing, growing and learning to take pleasure in your life.
Click here to RSVP yes to less guilt and more pleasure.
Leaving diet culture is kind of like growing out bangs.
You start out and think this is going to be great! This action is going to solve all my woes. No more bang trims or hair in my eyes when I work out. It's going to be ahhh-MAY-zing.
Then three months hence, your hair looks like Medusa. It's a tangled mess of ugly. You can't figure out what to do with all these not bangs not real hair yet.
And it feels like forever. With the ugly hair dos and random ways to pin back hair without it sticking straight up.
Then one day, you can make a whole pony tail or have that sexy model hair over your eye look (for 2 seconds until you realize that hair covering your eyes is sexy looking and annoying AF in real life.)
So you decide you're done with dieting. It's going to be magical. Of course you'll still eat a green smoothie or 2, but you could eat all.the.funnel cakes. And no guru is going to shame you for that.
Then three months hence, you realize that your abs look like the bang equivalent of medusa hair. And that funnel cakes actually make you feel like shit when consumed in large quantities.
You're still doing all the inner work to be able to practice intuitive eating like the book says....where your intuition tells you that you are done eating before you're stuffed and when you listen when it says more spinach please.
You can't figure out why the fuck your intuition says funnel cake at all. And why it feels so little like the brilliant healthy, shame free end that the book describes (I have not actually read an intuitive eating book, so I don't know, but it's like this in every other genre of self help book.)
It's because there are lessons to learn. There is still work to do. And there are few books written from the medusa bang stage of life. People don't want to know about the messy middle. Books like that just don't sell well. People want to know that there is resolution.
And I want you to know, I'm here with you. I feel you. I see you. And I'm in the messy middle writing a Face Book (see what I did there??) just for you.
Once you unleash your demons, they can run far far away.
One time I taught a fitness class at my church.
The second lesson was a workout I created that was a series of long held yoga poses for strength and perseverance.
As I was explaining the inspiration for the workout was a prenatal yoga class, a girl raised her hand and said "one time I read that a Christian did yoga and manifested all kinds of demons in her life."
In my head was a lot of judgy sentences and swear words. Out of my mouth I said the truest most real thing I could muster in a church building. "You can't really manifest demons that aren't already in your head."
Then she left, I got the first of many gentle church conversations about what Christians believe and how I was slightly outside that truth.
The process of getting in tune with yourself probably looks like you manifested some demons in your life.
We're so used to keeping our demons locked deep inside. In our hearts and our guts are all those not good enough and worthiness demons.
And when we start to take action to let them out, it looks like more bad than good. Your family starts to think "hmmm...It appears she is troubled."
But here's the honest truth. Many of us have been troubled for a long time. We have felt unworthy of love, of abundance and of using our voices for most of our lives. We have battled silently for decades. We have played by all the rules we were supposed to.
And to people who counted on us feeling unworthy to use our voices or create our own rules, it probably looks troubling.
The difference between this and troubled is that we know. That on the other end of releasing all this toxic stuff from our lives is relief and joy.
Finding relief and joy is #sexyAF
During my full moon ritual yesterday, on of my intentions was to be able to fully expose my core and trust it to support me. That was both a physical core (you can see the plank video on both my personal Instagram and Facebook pages) and a spiritual core.
You know how you reach your true core, it's the place where your soul feels a little shaky like my side plank foot quiver (I don't think you need to see the video to grasp what I"m talking about, but it's in my FB somewhere).
When you get to your true core, it's the place where you're like can I really be that or share that? Where you feel all warm and fuzzy and like maybe it's a little too real or raw for the world outside of you.
The scariest part of my true core is outing my unique spirituality. I am a Jesus follower who also believes in the healing power of crystals, blessing oil and who learned that Jesus is her spirit guide during a distance Reiki session (and also my friend said she had never seen that before, so high five me!). I'm half Sanskrit mantra, half Christian music. I'm down for most kinds of rituals (which I sort of attribute to my Catholic upbringing....they love a good ritual.) And it feels scary to admit that. Because in the real world, it doesn't fit neatly and without ruffling any feathers.
And also I'm the girl who after she learned that Jesus was her spirit guide thought "Jesus is my spirit animal. OOOOHHHH I should make a shirt that says that."
P.S. In the spirit of true authenticity, my intention about my core was to release my bloated stomach. My affirmation was to feel confident exposing my core. I can woo woo any body part. It's the magic of working with me. You have a weak muscle or ailment, if you dig deep enough, there's probably a spiritual answer. Don't even get me started on squats.
p.s. If you are feeling the call to work with me, let's chat. I currently have spots open for 1:1 and group coaching and would love to help you love your core more :) You can find out more about group coaching here. And individual coaching here.
All is well. I am safe.
There is something that still feels very unsafe about goal weights in my world.
The first time I ever got to my (Weight Watchers) goal weight, I got unengaged, found out my dad was dying and got laid off the next month. All of those things (even my dad dying) had amazing miracles on the other end of them. But the transition was really hard.
The second time I reached a goal weight, we decided to move to California. It also was amazing, but the transition truly sucked.
There is a belief in some circles that when your physical body is not strong enough to handle all the good things that are coming to you as you take your life to the next level, you get sick. I think the same is true of weight loss.
We pin a lot of hopes and dreams on "when I get to some ideal weight or body." But in order for that to truly be a possibility, we must feel mentally and physically strong enough to step into a new reality.
So while I'm in this time of transition, I'll just be over here affirming that all is well and I am safe (and also at the gym making sure physical Sarah is strong enough to hang in her ideal world.) P.s. I just launched 2 new ways to work with me...The Sexy AF Sisterhood (an online group program) and a Soul Goal in person workshop here in CA. It's a big time of growth and transition in my business world as well.
The dieting-food guilt-body shame cycle functions in your life like an addiction.
You are just fine, happy and ready to level up your life. Ready to maybe tackle that last little bit of your story or your trauma that's keeping you from moving forward.
Then bam, your brain goes to your auto pilot place.
"Self...you ate a cupcake. Now you feel bloated. You need some kind of diet to regain control of this situation. What kind of diet should we go on. Paleo...this week let's pick Paleo. Crap. I ate some non-paleo food. I'm such a failure because I can't stick to diets. Ugh. When will I ever just have the willpower to stick to this diet."
This is your brain trying to keep you playing small and where you are comfortable. Because the truth is that your weight and body shape have a very small impact on your ability to play big and step into all the miraculous glory God has planned for you.
That shame and guilt...the energy you project when you are in that space...that's everything.
You were meant for a great abundant and prosperous life. You deserve better than playing small by worrying about a cupcake.
If you're ready to step out of the dieting-food guilt-body shame cycle and into all the abundance, prosperity and joy God intended for you, then The Sexy AF Sisterhood is the place for you. Curious? Feeling the pull to join us? Let's hop on the phone and chat about it.
...But Sarah, why are you hanging out in lingerie at 7:30 p.m.
Yeah...it's not that.
I sat down after dinner and declared defeatedly that "I feel gross in my body today."
Ryan asked me what I would tell my clients to do.
"Something that makes them feel good. Something that makes them feel sexy." The lingerie sitch was Ryan's input into my coaching methodology.
I doubted it's potential....except it worked. Like this is not the face of a girl who feels gross.
I have been so careful to never define sexy as actual sexy. Which might have been slightly misguided on my part. This is quite a bit of uplifting....just hanging out in lingerie (which I have now typed more times in this post than in the rest of my life combined.) Life lesson. Sometimes SexyAF really is just dressing SexyAF for some liberated lounging.
If you're ready to be liberated from body shame, and love what you see in the mirror (and know how to recover when you do) click here to sign up for my mailing list. I'm launching my new virtual program "The SexyAF Sisterhood" in June and I would love you be a part of it. (Lingerie not required, but also not discouraged.)
What if you couldn't fail yourself?
Like even in your lowest I gained 40 lbs and still eating pizza, it hurts to get off the couch and why the fuck am I eating cupcakes for breakfast moments...you just could not be a failure.
What if all those moments and decisions that feel like true failure were actually leading you to the person you are destined to become.
Then you could stop filling those moments with self loathing and guilt and see them as wise teachers.
When I hired the recipient of this text, I'm not sure I viewed my out of shapeness as a wise teacher.
I am convinced, however, that the combination of being pushed past where I thought my limits were and having someone who encouraged me when I thought said limit pushing would kill me got me to a point where I could type that text and believe it.
It's the magic of coaching. Coaches have pushed past their limits...so they can push and believe that it won't kill you.
Yesterday's was the new moon and it's not too late to set an intention to become what you always wanted to be. And to start believing that it is impossible for you to fail yourself.
If you’re reading my blog, you probably have been to a gym at least once in your life. There’s this “push through it, feel no pain, no excuses” kind of attitude.
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably also been on at least one diet. Same attitude. Feel no hunger pangs, ignore your body. Just push through it.
And that’s how stepping into your ideal body should feel. It should feel like you listening to your body and working with it. It should be magical and calm and sweet. And if you have no idea how that would happen, you’re in the right place. That’s what I do. I help women step into their body in a way that is calm, sweet and healing. If you’re ready for that, apply to work with me today.