Food for thought: Benefits of weight training

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By Nika Shelby

You may have seen my Facebook post a couple of weeks ago. No, it wasn’t a closet-feminist articles, nor was it a selfie with my hilarious family.

This particular piece was on a topic near to my heart: fitness and nutrition.

Like any provocative article will, the title of the blog post  caught my eye initially. While casually perusing my Facebook News Feed, as I so often do, I came across a weird status. It read: ‘1,200 Calories.’

Displayed below the link was the thumbnail picture. It was disgusting. It was disturbing. It was … fascinating. I couldn’t look away.

Two scales displayed the same weight: five pounds. One scale held five pounds of fat and the other held five pounds of muscle.

The visual blew my mind. The glop of lard was three times larger than the lean muscle! I instantly clicked the link and began reading. The first line was quite the zinger and immediately made me hungry for more.

The blogger Sophie writes, “I don’t know why ‘1,200’ managed to be the magic number of calories women should consume if they want to lose weight.”

I won’t give it all away, because I expect you to read the article itself, but I’ll give you some highlights. Sophie talks about “starvation mode,” metabolism, excessive cardio, calories, nutritious value of food, the health and nutrition market for women, looking toned, exercises, what to eat, what not to eat, weight, curves and muscle. Sexy, toned muscle.

Sophie makes two particularly good points that resonated deeply with me.

They are that, first, “a healthy body cannot be measured simply by poundage,” and, second, “less calories do not equal good nutrition.”

It is my hope that some of you girls reading this will be empowered to join me in Alumni Gym’s downstairs weight room.

I know it seems like an intimidating place, what with all those stinky boys down there! But think of them like mice; they’re more scared of you than you are of them.

So, to emphasize my dedication to living above my personal past eating disorder, this silly 1,200 calorie rule and giving my body the exercise, as well as the nutrition, it needs to be toned — I decided to include my own Facebook post.

I copied and pasted the exact text I used when I reposted this blog link on my wall. I still stand by my words 100 percent.

“Ladies, listen, do you understand that I do minimal cardio and eat more calories in one day than you eat in four?! I lift weights and spend less than an hour at the gym. I’m happy and healthy and fit.

“So what, I don’t have a thigh gap; but I also don’t have arm flub, ‘back boobs,’ handles of love, pooches nor pouches … Spring is coming soon, and I implore my lady friends to start thinking about getting off the elliptical or walking for three hours on the treadmill and joining me downstairs at the weight rack … Have a beach body that you’re proud of. Food for thought.”

I invite anyone reading this to reach out to me if you’re ready to look and feel your best.

And, let’s be honest, we all just want to look good naked, right? Strength train. It works. Don’t make me prove it.

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