CAN WE STOP HATING ON FIT MOMS, PLEASE?

So. Postpartum. What a crazy B postpartum is. If you read here regularly, you know my story about what I didn’t expect postpartum and how my transition back into fitness has gone.

If you’re new, in a nutshell: I was pretty fit before, couldn’t workout much at all during pregnancy, and was shocked how much I had changed and could not lose weight/snap back after a baby for no apparent reason other than birthing a human/not sleeping ever is HARD. Not ground-breaking, but still hard for me. 10 months later, I am feeling a lot more like myself and actually sleeping. 

What I really want to hit on today is acceptance and support for all moms, no matter what goals they are or are not trying to accomplish. I am not posting this to say that all moms should have the same goals or that being fit is the only way to be. I personally have been two very different women on this issue. 

I have been the doughy postpartum teary blob that so wants my own body back, desperate for it and seriously hurting inside that I am but a shell of myself (and covered in spit up, on top of it all). Through those early days I hated on every other “fit mom” out there. Hashtag #fitmom? More like #youmakemelookbadandwanttocry. The amount of resentment and jealousy I had for moms who appeared to “snap right back” was unreal. I won’t lie to you and tell you all my issues with that have gone away either, but I’ve come a long way. 

Flash forward to almost a year since popping out a kid, the fog has lifted. ThankyouJesus. Fitness is appealing again. I have the energy for it. I can take Claire to the Y and get a workout in in peace. I am seeing results. I stopped breastfeeding and that has helped me lose some weight too. It’s all kind of falling into place. And so I’m starting to get more interested in fitness like I was before. 

C and I after a trail race 

But suddenly, I’m feeling some judgement. Suddenly I feel like I’m going to piss someone off for being a “fit mom” type and using that hashtag. #Ireallydontwanttobeajerk #seriously 

Suddenly, I feel like it’s war all over again, but on the other side. On the other side of this issue, now I am a mom that is ready to get back into fitness and kick it into high gear. I paid my dues of being the chunky PPD see-food diet kind of mom for a while. I’m done with that and so so excited to move on being a better version of myself, whether that’s like I was before pregnancy or not. 

Should anyone hate on that? I really don’t think so. 

But here I am at a crossroads with who I was and who I am in the present. Both of those women exists within my still-flabby, needs-a-lot-of-work, but-finally-fits-into-my-jeans frame. I have been both the mom sitting there on Instagram getting honestly really angry that someone with a three month old baby already has her abs back and I have been the mom posting progress pictures of my biceps and dang proud of it. 

I’m here to say that neither of those are wrong. Yes, I had serious jealousy and internal issues in how I felt about other moms. I could not be happy for them until I started seeing any kind of change for myself. But it’s 100% normal to hate them in your head. In all that time that I was bitter, I never said anything on mom’s posts like that. I had to unfollow some people so I wasn’t seeing stuff like that daily to drive me insane. And that is okay too. 

It’s also not wrong to be the mom who is super proud of herself for signing up for her first post-baby half marathon or losing the last ten pounds or helping other women with fitness. It’s not wrong to want to work out with your baby, leave your baby at the gym, do a workout DVD during nap time, or prioritize yourself. 

What’s wrong to me though? Hating on those moms who are just trying to do good (and actually telling them so). Yes, there is absolutely a fine line on what is “good” and what’s just downright bragging. But in hindsight, when I was bitter mom, the things that bugged me then don’t seem nearly as offensive now. I was very melodramatic by thinking that others were sharing things to brag on and on about themselves and intentionally make me feel bad. Others were posting things without even thinking of me at all, so of course that cannot be true. 

a recent gym scene from my daily trips to the Y

But why tear them down when the issue is honestly most likely with yourself? That’s a hard pill to swallow for sure, but I mean it. Why hate on someone else when the problem is actually yours? Sure, you may not agree with what someone posts. I particularly hate bra only/stomach bearing posts. Why? I wouldn’t post a picture in just my regular bra so I don’t see how a sports bra is any different. But also because I hate my abs. I’ve never had abs. So seeing someone with a flat enough stomach to post a picture in just a bra has always not been my fave. But I have come to terms with what I don’t like about it and realize I won’t do that for myself. What other women are comfortable doing is totally up to them, though. And I shouldn’t be bitter about it because it’s not what I would do. 

Something that makes no sense in all of this is that our society praises women who get back into shape in weeks time and bashes moms who “lose themselves to motherhood.” Neither of those are healthy ways to look at it. But it seems like in the real world when you actually talk to moms, they are all hating on the women who are getting back into shape (a good thing) and seemingly glorifying the Starbucks-drinking-yoga-pants-wearing type of motherhood (not always so healthy). Are we all really so jealous and insecure about our own bodies that we actually hate a thing that is good? The thing we too would want for ourselves, if we could have it?

On the flip side of this, I get that fitness or getting into really good shape is totally not everyone’s priority, especially after having kids. I so so get that. Maybe fitness has never been part of your life, so why would it be now when you have more on your plate and less time than ever? Fitness is a personal decision and if a lifestyle including fitness is just not happening post-baby or ever, I can support that too. While I love fitness, I’m not going to force my love of it onto anyone else. That’s for them to decide. 

Some judgement that I have faced from a few friends is them being baffled by how I could possibly run or sign up for a race within a few months of having a baby. I had some comments like “Omg I can’t even run a mile, how did you run 6 miles after having a baby?!” or “I heard running can lower your milk supply. Be careful…” These comments were from non-fitness people, though. They are looking at this through a microscope, thinking I just randomly decided to run 6 miles three months after having a baby as if I had never run before (although they did know I was a runner). But I didn’t do this randomly. I ran a full marathon less than a year ago at that point and come from a running background, which had definitely stuck with me despite taking a break from running. 

It was disappointing to say the least that when I was so proud of getting back into running, people were quietly questioning me for running with Claire in the stroller so soon. Not the choice everyone would make but she is totally fine and I’m the one who gets to make those choices. I was so proud of signing up for a race to give me some motivation to get back into running, but it seemed like a select few were raining on my parade because it didn’t fit their view of “normal.” But my normal was running four times a week before I had a baby, so I wanted to get back to that! 

after my first post-baby race, July 2015

Something else to consider is that I follow a lot of fitness professionals. To be disappointed that I didn’t have abs post-baby is dumb because have I ever had abs? NO! It’s like comparing apples and oranges. I also had a very tough pregnancy and ate like complete garbage through all of it. And that easily continued for months after having a baby. Is it dumb to wonder why I was not making any progress and others who have backgrounds in nutrition were making progress faster? So, so dumb. But when you’ve just had a baby and you’re emotional, you don’t see that. Oh, no. The whole world was out to get me and tell me I was doomed and fat  

It’s also not fair to start hating on someone when fitness is their job. It’s not my job to inspire people to get fit. I’m not getting paid for that nor do I have a background in that to help me get there. But a lot of women do. I don’t think any of these women have a secret that means they could snap back faster than the average mom. They just live a healthier lifestyle period. And for the longest time, I didn’t want to hear that. I wanted to blame it on genetics or say some people were just lucky and I wasn’t. Nope. They make conscious healthy choices every single day. That is their secret. It’s not because they are some different crazy breed of people. Seriously. The more I make those decisions for myself like taking the extra walk, drinking a lot more water, not buying the cookies and not binge eating, I am seeing a difference too. Really. 

I’ve never come across any criticism about my “fit mom” type of posts yet and I doubt I will. I have some pretty awesome followers all around! And I don’t do fitness for a business. I am not even close to the level of fitness that some moms are at. But I know I am at a greater level of fitness than plenty of moms I know too, and so it worries me that I am not resonating with them but actually making them angry. I would just hope that, no matter what state your mom bod (or even your still-haven’t-had-kids bod) is in – I would really hope that people will support my fitness choices. Fitness is GOOD. Fitness has done nothing but make me happy and completely transform my life. And as a mom, it’s even more important now to get that endorphin-producing me time in. 

For the moms who are bitter – know that I was bitter too and sometimes still am. It is so hard to work to get back to a state of normal. Time has been the single best thing to help me get where I want to be though. So be patient with yourself. Really patient. And unfollow those people for a while or stop going to those places that make you feel so bitter. It’s okay to not like all that stuff at the moment. 

And for the moms who are taking healthy steps toward fitness, I applaud you. You’re going to be stronger for a next pregnancy someday. You’re setting a good example for your kids. You’re trying to beat the odds of obesity in America. But also remember who is watching – those moms who envy you and hate you all at the same time. Be careful in what you say. 

I also know that this whole topic can have the mom and just-had-a-baby part of the equation taken out. The real question isn’t really about moms and fitness (although for some reason when you become a mom, the judgement police seem to come out of hiding like none other). The question really is – can we stop hating on fit people? Even if we are not like them. Even if they are fitter than us. Even if we will never be “that fit.” Hatred does not breed anything but more evil in the world. Support, even when you really don’t see eye to eye with someone, is infinitely the better choice. 

No matter what our fitness goals, backgrounds, or how many kids we have – we are all in this together. Too often I think we approach life as if we are in this all alone. I know I can’t do motherhood alone though – it’s way too hard! I hope that even if you don’t completely agree with everything I said, you can at least agree that being accepting and supportive to moms of any size, background, or fitness level is the best way to approach this tender subject. 

Questions for You:

  • Are you the bitter mom, the proud mom, or some mix of the two?
  • What is your general opinion of “fit moms” today? 

ZIPPY ELLIPTICAL WORKOUT

Good day! I’m having a good, but cold day so far. To start my day, I had my favorite breakfast: whole grain toast with peanut butter, banana, honey, and wheat germ. And of course some Starbucks to warm me & wake me up.

Peanut Butter & Banana on toast with Starbucks

In leui of my January fitness plan, some cardio was on the books for today. As much as I desperately wanted to run, it was about 4 degrees this morning. Yikes! Outdoor run = out the window. Thankfully I have access to small gym in my apartment complex, but I wasn’t keen on an indoor run today. Ugh, how I loathe the dreadmill! I really just feel my best running outside. Running on the treadmill takes more coordination for me, something I don’t have a lot of.Instead, I opted for a quick but tough elliptical workout.

Zippy Ellitpical Workout

What always keeps me motivated when working out indoors is music. A lot of my favorite songs came on today, helping me keep up the pace.

Soundtrack for Today

  • “Toxic” – Britney Spears
  • “Where the Streets have No Name” – U2
  • “Dancing in the Dark” – DEV
  • “Give It Up to Me” – Shakira
  • “Vertigo” – U2
  • “I’ll Meet You There” – Owl City
  • “Part of Me” – Katy Perry

Also, I’ve decided to keep a workout log on the blog from now on to track my progress for 2013. And  after that workout, I’m starved! On the menu for lunch today is a chicken, avacado, and cheese melt along with some Trader Joe’s Organic Lentil soup. Healthy, delicious, and very filling!

Chicken Avacado Melt with Lentil Soup

Now I’m home the rest of day hopefully to get some to-do list items done and stay toasty!

  • Question for you: How do you stay productive when it’s cold and gloomy out? 

Filet Mignon vs Rib-eye

When it comes to steaks, the most popular options are the rib-eye and the filet mignon. These two are known for their classic taste. Moreover, they have the reputation of being luxuriously delicious. Confronted with Filet mignon vs rib-eye, dilemma, however, you will surely find yourself a bit confused.

To resolve this dilemma, you need to know exactly the difference between these two different cuts of beef. Of course, to those who are uninitiated to the different types of meat cuts, they will readily say that they are all the same, after all, they are just eating the same cow’s meat. However, to the expert, there are distinctive differences between filet mignon and rib-eye.

The Difference between Rib-eye and Filet Mignon

The steaks that you eat usually vary from each other, depending on how they are cooked and which part of the cow’s body they are taken from. The body of the cow, for example, is divided accordingly into different parts or sections. These different parts include the chuck, rib, brisket, short loin, plate, flank, sirloin, bottom sirloin, round, and shank.

The T-bones, for example, are beef cuts derived from the short loin. The porterhouse is also taken from the point of junction of the top loin and the tenderloin. In the case of the rib-eye, it is derived from the rib section which spans the six rib to the twelfth rib.

Filet mignon comes from the short loin along the tenderloin’s smaller end. The filet mignons usually are like 2 long snake-shaped beef cuts which are often sold as a whole. But when they are sliced, they appear as round cuts or tube cuts as well as filet cuts.

So, the first major difference between the two is the part of the cow’s body from where the cuts come. As mentioned above, the filet mignon is derived from the short tenderloin, while the rib-eye is taken from the rib part of the cow’s body.

Ribeye

The ribeye has the reputation of being the most flavorful steak. If you would ask many steak aficionados about their favorite cut of steak, many of them would surely remark that it is the ribeye that they love most.

This cut includes a huge amount of fat marbling that can surely pack in juicy texture and rich flavors. It is also easy to cook. All you need to do is season it with pepper and salt, and afterward, you will get to taste the most delicious steak.

Filet Mignon

Many would also agree that the filet mignon is one of the best steaks, though many experts would say that this view of the filet mignon is overrated. The filet mignon, of course, doesn’t carry the rich flavors of the ribeye steak. Hence, it is more often paired with sauce or gravy and wrapped in bacon to provide it with added flavor. But there is no doubt that the filet mignon carries unbeatable texture because it is very tender. Its tenderness is best described by the phrase, “it melts in your mouth.”

Are the Ribeye and Filet Mignon?

The average cow only has around 18 ounces of filet mignon. Hence, it makes sense to see why the filet mignon belongs to the most expensive steaks. Moreover, many really want to eat filet mignon, and for this reason, it comes with a higher price tag.

Ribeye, on the other hand, is neither cheap. If you want to save when buying ribeye, you should buy a large rib section and do the cutting on your own. But if you dine in a restaurant and order rib-eye steak, you can surely expect to pay more.

The Difference in Sizes

You can readily distinguish which the filet mignon and the ribeye is by simply looking at the size of the steak. The ribeye is larger than the filet mignon. The sizes of the filet mignon may vary, but overall, it is almost half or a quarter of the ribeye steak.

The filet mignon is characterized by fine-grained muscles along with a few strips of fat that run through its thin surface. On the other hand, the ribeye shows a heavily marbled surface. This means that you will notice specks of whitish fat on the meat along with a few thick fatty strips around the edge. So, if ever you are beset with the question of filet mignon vs ribeye, just remember the abovementioned differencesbetween the two.

Spare Ribs vs Baby Back – Read This Guide Before You Buy

Ribs are ribs is a popular misconception. Pork ribs are gotten from pigs in two different areas. This article will look into both of them and explore the benefits of each pork ribs. We’ll also include how to save more when purchasing ribs and how to get the best of them for your next backyard cookout.

Each rib is created uniquely, but there’s nothing complicated about selecting the right one for your cookout. So, Spare Ribs vs. Baby backs– what’s the big difference?

Spare Ribs:

Spare ribs also referred to as side ribs are usually meatier. They are juicy, thick, and are extracted from the pig’s belly section. They typically come with flap, costal cartilage, and sternum still attached.

From the spare rib comes the Louisiana or St. Louis style ribs. This pork rib is more likely to find in restaurants and competitions. The cartilage and breastbone are trimmed off from the ribs’ top, and the flap removed from the back. The ribs, therefore, becomes rectangular after being trimmed up.

Back Ribs:

 These can also be regarded as Loin Ribs or Baby Back Ribs. Back Ribs come from the pig’s back, along the spinal column and near the near where pork chops are gotten from. While this type of pork ribs are not as fatty and meaty as spare ribs, back ribs are more tender and better marketed.

That’s not all: they are more pricey because of their high demand cut. Another fantastic benefit of purchasing Back Ribs is that they are faster to prepare compared to Spare Ribs, which means you get to your finger-licking and bone picking faster.

Spare Ribs Vs. St. Louis – How to Choose

Regardless of what you choose – Spare ribs, Back ribs, or any other variation, you should look out for these factors to ensure you get the best for your buck.

  • Get advice from your butcher on ribs, and still linger and look.
  • Examine the ribs for meatiness, if you don’t find the meat enough, then pick another. You don’t want to leave wanting more.
  • You want to marble. Incredible fat’s striations that run alongside the bone to offer more moisture and flavour while preparing the meal.
  • Stay away from pink and unhealthy meat. Also, greyish or dry looking meat should be avoided.
  • Ensure you smell the package to smell the meat before putting it down
  • Avoid letting the bones break through the meat on the back or front.
  • Do purchase racks that include about 11 to 14 bones in them; this makes it easy to share.

How to Get The Best Out of Ribs

Spare or back ribs, before shopping for them determine if you want to offer an appetizer or a full meal. For an appetizer, you need three ribs per person, and for a whole meaning, you need at least half rack per person.

Also to get the most bang for your buck when purchasing leaves is buying untrimmed spare ribs and doing the trimming yourself. In doing this, you stand to enjoy a heck of extra fat and meat which will come in handy. The fat can be used for flavouring in sausage, the skinny and flap bit at the racks’ end and can be used to make delicious rib tips and the best boom section for flavouring baked beans.

Where to Buy

Obviously, the best place to purchase a good ribs bidet back rib or spare rib is at your butcher’s place. Buying from them allows you to see what they have on hand. Plus the help with trimming the ribs removing the silver skin and provide you with great recommendations on how to prepare them.

However, if getting to local butcher Sims impossible then you can head out to a meat counter at any grocery store. A butcher’s counter-offers similar services as the local butcher. Besides, the prices of both areas may differ but will be based on the cost of pork per pound at that point in time.

For those interested in buying meat at a bulk price check your local listing. It shouldn’t be hard to find one that sells at a wholesale price. This can be an ideal option for those looking to feed a crowd. But note you’ll be advised to purchase about six or more racks of ribs when placing an order.

Baby Back Ribs Vs. St Louis Ribs

When it comes to a tasty smoked pork rib, people tend to think about a summertime BBQ on their back porch with colleagues, friends or neighbours. It’s no doubt meaty pork ribs can be irresistible with its flavourful smell, Which tells the whole story to the neighbourhood that something great is currently happening on your smoker or grill.

Before your next cookout, you should probably get the best cut of pork rib everyone has a great time on your back porch. One of the commonly asked questions when trying to choose the best pork rib is the difference between baby back ribs and Saint Louis style pork ribs.

Thus, in this post, we will be discussing why you should a type of pork leg over the other.

Baby Back Ribs

When you hear the word pork ribs, the first thing that pops up in your mind is a baby back rib. This type of pork ribs are usually thinner and don’t include much meat on the bone. And for this reason, baby back ribs are generally what you get at restaurants.

Another distinctive feature off baby back ribs is it slightly curved bones. For those wondering where the name came from, what is called baby back ribs because it is gotten from the upper back part of the pig close to the spine after the removal of the loin. Baby back ribs are usually thought to come from piglets which are a popular misconception.

However, if you are concerned about the nutritional value the baby back ribs offers, then you should know that 3 oz of meat contains about 248 calories and 20 grams of protein.

Furthermore when you order a rack of ribs, you should expect about 8 to 13 ribs in a rack, and usually, a rack weighs 1 and 1/2 to 2 lbs. On top of that this type of needs is generally more expensive due to the increase in demand over the past few years.

This is not enough reason not to choose baby back ribs, but you should put them into consideration when planning a cookout with a lot of the guests.

St. Louis-Style Ribs

St. Louis style ribs also called spare ribs which is not one of the most picked types of meat when it comes to barbecue ribs, but don’t be fooled it will get you begging for more. Unlike the baby back ribs, these ribs are fatter and have more meat on the bone, which makes them a more delights food choice.

More so, if you’re looking to know where spare ribs come from then, you find it interesting that they are caught from the lower down closer to the pig’s stomach.

After cutting the ribs, its tops are removed as they are mostly cartilage and bones. After that, the meatier portion is left behind in a rectangular form.

For those wondering which of these ribs has the most tender cut, the st. Louis-style ribs usually have tougher meat compared to baby back ribs. But keep in mind that when St. Louis style rib cuts are properly cooked they can be just as tender.

Aside from St. Louis, these ribs are available anywhere in the United States and honeycomb in largest size compared to baby backs. The rack has an average weight between 2 and 1/2 to 3 lbs.

Even better, this Saint Louis style ribs are great for entertaining a large number of people since they are larger.

Further, this type of rib is called Saint Louis style because between 1930 to 1960, about 15 meat parking businesses were founded in an area called St Louis. At the time the larger meatpacking businesses were wasting 90% of ribs because they were selling rib-tip-intact spare ribs.

Therefore, the smaller Packers I responsible for the rectangular shape spare ribs we have today as they got ahead of the game by removing the tips. While the untrimmed slabs allow consumers to save more money per pound, purchasing trimmed slabs were worth it as it includes more meat. All in all the rectangular-shaped meaty became popularly called Saint Louis style ribs.

Final Thoughts

Generally, both ribs will make your taste bud John and your mouth watering. Whichever one you decide to splurge on will only be a matter of preference. Do you want a larger fattier rib or in smaller leaner rib?

Then that is totally up to you to decide what you want. Irrespective of what you choose, there is one thing that is common for all pork ribs in that is you’ll need a roll of paper towels and a bib.

Pellet Grill vs Propane

In the grilling world today, there are various units used in preparing varieties of foods. Among these units are pellet grill and Propane. Both devices are an excellent way of cooking any meat you want. They are both efficient, and at the same time, they both have their downsides. This article has been written to help you make the right choice.

Pellet Grill

Pellet is a unit which is often referred to as pellet smokers. These are outdoor smokers that use the features of gas grills, charcoal smokers, and kitchen ovens to perform exceptional functions.

Unlike other units, pellet smokers are fueled by woods pellets which help most grillers to enjoy a smoky flavour from the food cooked on it.

Also, this grill is a versatile outdoor cooker. Aside from grilling, this unit can smoke as well as bake using an electronic control panel to feed fuel pellets to the fire automatically.

Similarly, the electronic control panel also helps to regulate the grill’s airflow and maintain consistent cooking temperatures.

This unit has been in existence for over some decades ago. However, it performs unique functions and today compete with most modern grills. Pellet grill has a hopper on the side of the grill that is filled with food-grade wood pellets.

Meanwhile, you do not need a firelighter or matches to start this unit. To prepare your food, all you need to do is flip the power switch in and set a temperature.

Pellet grill has an auger that connects the hopper to a burn pot under the cooking grate. While the auger rotates, it moves the pellets into the burn pot. There is also the presence of what is known as the “hot rod” inside the pellet grill.

This rod helps to ignite the pellets as soon as they fall into the burn pot. Pellet grill is one of the less expensive smokers in the market today, and it is durable.

Propane

A propane grill is also referred to as gas grill. This unit makes use of Propane or butane which as the liquefied petroleum gas or natural gas as their source of fuel. The flame that comes from the gas either cooks the food directly or heats up the grilling elements, which then radiate the heat necessary to cook food.

The unit comes in different sizes of which you can be sure to get the one that perfectly suits your taste. The sizes range from small, single steak grills up to large scale.

Likewise, you can also get industrial sized smokers which are ideal for commercial usage or restaurants. Industrial sized smokers help you to cook enough meat to feed a hundred or more people at your birthday party.

Gas smokers are mobile and easy to move from a particular place to another. They have wheel carts that you can easily use to push your unit from any part of your house to another.

Besides movement, the wheel carts also provide support to the side tables, storage compartment and other features.

The unit features an infrared gradient buyer to the back of the grill enclosure. This infrared allows the burner to distribute heat evenly across the burner.

Gas smokers have a “smoker box” which contain wood chips that are used on a gas grill to give a smoky flavour to the grilled foods

How to choose between a Pellet grill and Propane

There is a wide range of options on the market, and there is no one-size-fits-all answer. However, all these grill types have one or more unique features and excellent performances that make them different from others.

This simply means that choosing the grill for your needs will be influenced by what you plan on preparing on it, the convenience you are after, the amount of money you are ready to spend on it, and the place of installation you plan on putting the grill.

For instance, if you are in search of grills with the best budget options for long-term use and entry-level pricing, then, had grills are the best options for you to choose.

On the other hand, if you are in search of grills that provide you with a smoky flavour, then, pellet grills are the best options for you to opt-in for.

Often, pellet grills can be used to cook effectively both indoor and outdoor. Whereas, a gas grill is only perfect for indoor cooking. You can get both grills with the cooking space area you want and with the level of temperature you want to use to prepare your food.