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Do Others Sabotage?

This might be a little uncomfortable. I’ve seen plenty of articles on sabotaging our own workouts but, I’m going to address how we sabotage each other (and how to fix it.)

“Really, you’re only eating that?!”
“Yeah, I’m trying to watch what I eat more carefully.”
“Come on, it’s only once a year. Live a little.”Who are you in this dialogue? The person encouraging the indulgence? Or, the person trying to make a positive change? If your familiar with this kind of dialogue, read on. Tough love below, heavy on the love.“Encouraging others to indulge” People:
OK, maybe you have the best intentions, but, maybe not. I have heard these stories time and again, friends and family that subtly (and not so subtly) try to sabotage someone else’s healthy living efforts. Unless you are worried about extreme behaviors (bulimia, body dysmorphia, obsessive exercise, etc.) the truth is most often uncomfortable. Maybe you are jealous, maybe you like your friend being heavier/less healthy than you, maybe you feel unwanted pressure to be healthy now, too because your friend is changing, maybe you’re struggling and their succeeding and that hurts, maybe your worried that if they are healthier they will leave you. I empathize. It’s very difficult to be stuck/envious/worried. And it’s hard to realize we are being unhelpful. First, the tough stuff, your unhelpful comments don’t make you look good nor do they really serve you well. Any outsider can see the sabotage, however indirect. More importantly, you are hurting your friend/family member and that’s not your intent, right?

Here’s the “love:” if you own your feelings and stop trying to sabotage, there is some great news waiting for you. The friend or family member that seems to be a threat/annoyance could be a resource – a sounding board, a source of strategies that are working or a piece of good news. (It feels good to celebrate our friend’s success.) Own where you are at and what you are feeling. Resist the urge to deal with your own feelings by trying to limit/sabotage your friend/family member. Living healthfully is challenging, consider being an advocate for your loved one and you just might foster a better relationship and healthier lifestyle because of it.

“Trying to make a healthy change” People:
You have the right to change your life in the way you see fit. I see no reason why some one trying to reduce their cholesterol, enjoy their clothing or improve their body’s ability to facilitate their life should apologize about their goals. Sabotaging comments/behavior make a challenging task even harder. Embrace your right to live your life as you see fit. BUT, I do encourage you to initially bring some understanding to push-back from friends and family. Some may truly not realize they are sabotaging. (This takes a lot of “love.”) If you suspect that is the case, have a private conversation. Explain that the discouragement is making it harder and allow them room to change and be supportive. On the other hand, (here comes the “tough” part) you may have to realize that some people will insist on being unhelpful, inappropriate or unaware and that requires you to pull on your inner strength and maybe even distance yourself from them. Don’t let them steal your success or make you feel bad for making improvements. Keep your eye on the prize and find people that do support you. (As an aside: Anyone can ALWAYS tweet, post or email your positive steps to Blakely FIT. Clients and readers do it all the time! We’re always elated to hear good news and moments of success.)

Bottom line: I wish both sides the best in living positively and managing their desired life while respecting each other’s choices. Good luck!

Email to learn more about training with Blakely FIT.

Strength Training Exclusively for Women
Chicago, IL

Foolproof Your Workout…

Here are the four top mistakes I witness (and help correct) as women embark on a new exercise regimen. Take a glance and avoid them yourself.


1. The Extreme Dream: Some of us are attracted to the extreme. And, some of us bring that to our workouts. Embarking on an extreme workout regime at the start of your program only works in the movies. I love GI Jane as much as the next gal. To embark on a marathon, boot camp or high intensity program with out proper progression is asking for an over-stressed system and injury. The body does not respond well to drastic changes in movement, load and impact. It is a malleable, miraculous wonder but it also belongs to a very powerful union that will go on strike when pushed to far. If extreme workouts are your ultimate goal, let go until you have created a foundation of consistent, habitual, and moderately intense exercise.

2. Data Dodger: Some of us don’t like to look at the black and white of things. We feel strongly that we have a sense of our behavior and reject the suggestion to log, tally or track. Cue mistake number two. I completely empathize with the tedium of logging our behavior and have made this mistake myself. But look at it this way, if after monitoring yourself you learn you have a correct sense of your food, exercise, stress, etc., you will have the joy of confirming your self awareness. If your sense is inaccurate, you just saved yourself months of wondering why success is eluding you. Food logs, activity trackers, heart rate monitors and pen and paper tallies are essential tools to understanding where you are so that you know exactly what needs to change.

3. She Stops Short: Having goals is great. Writing them down is awesome. Stopping there is mistake number three. Goals are a start, tasks take you to the finish line. For example, “I would like to feel as healthy and fit as I did before having children” is a wonderful goal, but you must articulate the tasks that will get you there. Big picture goals don’t do much for our daily choices and that is where the real power lies. Tasks need to be specific and measurable. Here are a few strong examples:

  • walk on the treadmill at the gym every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday after personal training for 20 minutes in a heart rate range of 22 to 28 beats per ten second count
  • find one, new, non-food related stress reliever every week for the next two months
  • schedule and enjoy one hour per weekend to do something for myself
  • complete three sets of ten pushups, squats, rows and RDLs twice per week

4. Goals Glutton: Taking on too many changes at once is a quick way to derail your program (and become very frustrated very quickly.) Do me a favor, fold your hands like this:   FoldedhandsBlakelyFITNow, fold them with the fingers laced the other way. Change is hard. Too many changes at once is futile. I have no interest in holding you back, quite the contrary. You can succeed at every single one of your goals, however long the list, just not all at once. Prioritize goals and habits by meaning and importance, then chip away at them one at a time.

Good luck! You can do this! Email to gain even more of my help:

Strength Training Exclusively for Women, Chicago, IL

Photos of My Closet

MBClosetShotWhy am I subjecting all of you to pictures of my suspiciously ordinary closet? Is the organization system revolutionary? Hardly. Are the clothes fabulous? A few – but nothing worthy of your time. Is there something about it that makes me healthier? Nope.
The most distinguishing factor to my closet? Everything fits. And, I do mean everything. Feel free to curse such a fortunate scenario (at another time in my life, I would.) But that most certainly is not the reason I’m sharing this detail. I’m convinced this scenario can help you. And as we’ve seen before, if there’s an opportunity to help, I’ll exploit it.

We are flooded with health and longevity related reasons to exercise. However, the most pressing and impactful reasons to be fit are not always in the research. Trusting clients have shared some candid goals with me over the years:

  • “I’m tired of dressing so strategically.” (concealing “problem” areas trumping fashion preference)
  • “I want everything in my closet to fit. It doesn’t.”
  • “I’m tired of looking so differently from how I see myself.”
  • “I only wear jeans with long tops.”
  • “I wish my size didn’t prevent me from shopping at [insert favorite store here].”
  • “I hate that I waste 20 minutes every morning getting dressed because of my weight.”
  • “I dislike having three wardrobes: each a different size.”

So, if you are looking for motivation to be healthier and more active, open your closet doors: their might be an untapped well of fashion fun, morning time savings, guilt elimination and self expression waiting for your healthy living habit. Need help? Drop me a line. It would be my pleasure.


Not the size you’d like to be?

  • Dress and shop the size you are. You are beautiful and worthy of feeling contemporary right now. Depriving yourself until you hit your goal weight rarely works.
  • Plan investment pieces for when you have kept a new change for approximately 3 months.
  • Tailor your clothes. Many of my clients lose weight in the healthy living process. A good tailor can do wonders for ensuring a great fit and lengthening the life of your clothes as your body changes.

Strength Training Exclusively for Women, Chicago, IL