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Crossfit Works, Inc., Fitness Centers,
Tucson, AZ

The Fitness World’s Favorite Conversation: Women’s Bodies

Shout out to Jen B. who deadlifted 250lbs last night for a double!!  Also to Jessica B. who, with the help of Leslie, had an Ah-Ha!! moment with her low traps and lats.  Also to Kai who figured out her mysterious wrist position thing with horizontal barbell pulling motions!

A Woman Warrior, outside the Musee de Orsay in France

It is always good to keep conversations open and going, even regarding the topics we hold most near and dear.  There is a little discussion going on right now in the Paleo/Fitness blog world regarding the issue of women’s bodies.  This is an important conversation because I think, in general, things that begin as radical and world-changing often head down a slippery slope to becoming non-radical and non world-changing.  I believe in academia they call this “co-opting”.  It means that people, corporations or other organizations that were benefitting from the previous status-quo, figure out a way to take this new, radical, popular idea and make it fit their needs, so that they can continue to benefit without having to change.  What a heartbreaking thought that CrossFit and the Paleo Diet will be co-opted by the pre-existing fitness world and diet world and used to perpetuate the same diet myths and destructive body image stereotypes that we all have been fighting to change.

The power, the world-changing potential, of this general physical preparedness program coupled with an evolutionary-based eating approach came from it’s focus on supporting the human body in a quest for a long-life experienced with quality and energy.  It was the opposite of working out for bikini season.  It was working out to be strong, fast, powerful and functional.  It was the opposite of eating so that your jeans were a size 2.  It was eating so you lived long with high energy and avoidance of chronic illness.  To see that Paleo and CrossFit are simply used as another tool for convincing women they should look a certain way, or drop below the body fat percentage that allows them to ovulate, or even that a woman should strive to look like the CrossFit person on TV (yup, they are on TV now), is really sad.

If you check out the blog post here, Paleo Women are Phat, you will see an initiation of this conversation by the author of the blog AncestralizeMe.  She has all the right pieces in place in her general approach to nutrition, and in this case she brings up some very real issues for many of the women involved in this world.  These conversations are always important to make sure our own brains don’t start down that slippery slope to co-opting some otherwise radical, world-changing concepts.

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