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Elastigirl

Incredible Journey of Elastigirl

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And another post from me:

 

I forgot I had something I wanted to whine about , that I thought you guys would understand.

 

Today  my friend noticed my kettlebell book that I had out, and she was surprised that I worked out. This is not the first time some one has been surprised. I find it kind of discouraging. I mean, I feel like , I work hard, and look really in shape, and I convince myself that I look not just skinny , but like someone who is strong. Maybe it's that people still have the idea that if you look strong, you are going to be bulky. Which I will never be.   I don't know, it's  just kind of disheartening. People will comment on the fact that I'm skinny, but no one ever looks at me as strong. I'm not sure why that is important to me. It probably shouldn't be. Maybe just a recognition of the hard work I've done?  I need to get over the fact, because reality is people aren't going to look at me as strong, so I just need to be satisfied with myself and know that I have worked hard and I am strong. But, I thought I'd put my whine here, because if anyone understands that feeling, it's you guys

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13 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

The snow shovel is plastic. And the snow was super heavy, and ice, which is why it cracked.

That makes sense then.

1 hour ago, Elastigirl said:

People will comment on the fact that I'm skinny, but no one ever looks at me as strong.

I think people, some women specifically, just don't look properly. I think a lot of us are conditioned to look at size and not contours (like muscles or muscle 'lines' on the body - or as my hubby sometimes put it, the play of your visible muscles as you move) in other women. We look at men for muscles, but it has to be so over the top in women before we realise, wow, she is built very nicely. I am guilty of this sometimes too. It took hubby to point out that a woman's shoulders are rounded and not pointy because she trains, or look how her leg muscles move (and you can only see that if she is wearing shorts, or tights, or swimming costume).

So... if someone else who does strength training looks at you, they might pick up on the signs of you training and why you are slim and trim, but I found in general, if someone doesn't really train like this, they just don't think, or know, what it is they are seeing. So your friend saying you are skinny, is her way of saying your workouts are working! She probably doesn't really know what to look for (muscle play) :D

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I'd never put it in words like that, but I do feel the same way.. not the skinny part, no one would call me skinny ;) but with this KB sport nobody really realises how hard it is.. and competition results aren't always taken seriously because it's such a small sport (or at least, that's what I think people think, maybe they don't). That's why it's important to have friends who do the same things, so you'll have some people who know what you're working on. Maybe you'll have a chance to demonstrate your strength at some point- or maybe her spotting the book and realising you work out is that chance. Just tell her about how important it is to you! 

Oh and Elize made a really good point. 

 

6 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Thanks:biggrin-new:

Thanks. Can't forget about doing kettlebells , they are too fun. I did the Nerdfitness circuit today, but I haven't really picked a program. I' d love suggestions! Hmmm, what could I challenge you to  that wouldn't kill me?  

That's one hell of a circuit, just the thought makes me sweat ;)

I was thinking of suggestions but really everything I know is more sport style and you posting about brushing up on technique made me realise my suggestions probably wouldn't fit your style.. swings like that are so hard you know x) 

If you want to challenge me you can feel free to dictate a KB weight difference to make up for the age difference :D

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Sorry that woman's comments got under your skin.

 

Maybe it's my assassin roots :ph34r: but I think of this as a good thing. You can be sneaky strong without anybody realizing and then BAM you're shoveling ice for two hours and breaking snow shovels like a beast, or moving furniture, or all the other AMAZING feats of functional strength that you do with your pixie frame.

 

Basically, it's her loss that she can't see how awesome you are. :D

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Your awesome!  you do KNOW that, don't you???

 

please remember that all this work and effort has Paid off, it HAS made you strong & healthy.  Venting is off course totally encouraged just don't forget your awesome and know that everything has made you better; no matter how it changes your appearance (in other people's eyes).

 

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My first thought on the person being surprised you workout is that it says more about her than your appearance. She lives in a world where women here age don't work out. So the fact of your workouts cause cognitive dissonance for her, which she resolves by being surprised you workout. 

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Oh man. I hate stuff like that. Comments that seemed harmless originally but creep under your skin.

 

I agree with the others that say that a lot of people have no idea what "Strong" looks like, especially in women. I have several friends who are absolute monsters, but the muscle is a little hidden. No one would guess that these friends are weight lifters and mountaineers....until you see them MOVE. The way a person moves tells a lot about their strength and stability. My roommate does not look like the Colorado definition of an athlete. Nevertheless she will smoke you on a trail run, and can out-swim most dolphins.

 

It stinks that many of us cannot block out these comments. And they come from everywhere. Even last summer when I was super lean and strong looking, I would get ignored by outdoor store employees - I assume because I'm a woman and not wearing $150 technical pants.This winter MFH, my friend and I were out skiing and snowshoeing. An older, clearly experienced skier was chatting with MFH, but when I showed up with my friend he made fun of her snowshoes and started "teaching" us about how to know whether we'll get back before dark. After a few minutes of this, I mentioned a route to him I noodled around a few times that was about 10 mi long. He stopped. My friend was shocked I had stayed cool. Being stealth strong is awesome, but it carries its downside ><.

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11 hours ago, elizevdmerwe said:

That makes sense then.

I think people, some women specifically, just don't look properly. I think a lot of us are conditioned to look at size and not contours (like muscles or muscle 'lines' on the body - or as my hubby sometimes put it, the play of your visible muscles as you move) in other women. We look at men for muscles, but it has to be so over the top in women before we realise, wow, she is built very nicely. I am guilty of this sometimes too. It took hubby to point out that a woman's shoulders are rounded and not pointy because she trains, or look how her leg muscles move (and you can only see that if she is wearing shorts, or tights, or swimming costume).

So... if someone else who does strength training looks at you, they might pick up on the signs of you training and why you are slim and trim, but I found in general, if someone doesn't really train like this, they just don't think, or know, what it is they are seeing. So your friend saying you are skinny, is her way of saying your workouts are working! She probably doesn't really know what to look for (muscle play) :D

Very well put. Sometimes I will notice when a women is strong, but then I know what to look for. We just don't really know what a strong woman looks like

7 hours ago, KB Girl said:

I'd never put it in words like that, but I do feel the same way.. not the skinny part, no one would call me skinny ;) but with this KB sport nobody really realises how hard it is.. and competition results aren't always taken seriously because it's such a small sport (or at least, that's what I think people think, maybe they don't). That's why it's important to have friends who do the same things, so you'll have some people who know what you're working on. Maybe you'll have a chance to demonstrate your strength at some point- or maybe her spotting the book and realising you work out is that chance. Just tell her about how important it is to you! 

Oh and Elize made a really good point. 

 

That's one hell of a circuit, just the thought makes me sweat ;)

I was thinking of suggestions but really everything I know is more sport style and you posting about brushing up on technique made me realise my suggestions probably wouldn't fit your style.. swings like that are so hard you know x) 

If you want to challenge me you can feel free to dictate a KB weight difference to make up for the age difference :D

well, as far as skinny goes, you realize that people are comparing me to other middle aged woman, so it just means I don't look fluffy. See, I always pictured all your friends being super impressed by you and how strong you are. So yeah, I guess unless it's something you're into, you just don't realize it. I'm very thankful for you all. I'd love it if some of my in real life friends would be excited about strength training, but so far, they have zero interest.

Make suggestions. If I don't think it will work, I won't do them. Or I'll try them  because I haven't tried KB sport, and that might be fun too.

Challenge sounds fun. Let me think of something.

5 hours ago, annyshay said:

Sorry that woman's comments got under your skin.

 

Maybe it's my assassin roots :ph34r: but I think of this as a good thing. You can be sneaky strong without anybody realizing and then BAM you're shoveling ice for two hours and breaking snow shovels like a beast, or moving furniture, or all the other AMAZING feats of functional strength that you do with your pixie frame.

 

Basically, it's her loss that she can't see how awesome you are. :D

Yes, there is something to that. I do have times where I really enjoy surprising people  with my strength. 

10 minutes ago, DaemonCorax said:

Oh man. I hate stuff like that. Comments that seemed harmless originally but creep under your skin.

 

I agree with the others that say that a lot of people have no idea what "Strong" looks like, especially in women. I have several friends who are absolute monsters, but the muscle is a little hidden. No one would guess that these friends are weight lifters and mountaineers....until you see them MOVE. The way a person moves tells a lot about their strength and stability. My roommate does not look like the Colorado definition of an athlete. Nevertheless she will smoke you on a trail run, and can out-swim most dolphins.

 

It stinks that many of us cannot block out these comments. And they come from everywhere. Even last summer when I was super lean and strong looking, I would get ignored by outdoor store employees - I assume because I'm a woman and not wearing $150 technical pants.This winter MFH, my friend and I were out skiing and snowshoeing. An older, clearly experienced skier was chatting with MFH, but when I showed up with my friend he made fun of her snowshoes and started "teaching" us about how to know whether we'll get back before dark. After a few minutes of this, I mentioned a route to him I noodled around a few times that was about 10 mi long. He stopped. My friend was shocked I had stayed cool. Being stealth strong is awesome, but it carries its downside ><.

Yeah, I'm sure she didn't think twice about her comment, and really didn't mean for it to be hurtful. It just hit me the wrong way. Yep, that's the way I need to think of it, stealth strong, good for surprising people, but sometimes frustrating when people underestimate you:smile-new:

 

1 hour ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

My first thought on the person being surprised you workout is that it says more about her than your appearance. She lives in a world where women here age don't work out. So the fact of your workouts cause cognitive dissonance for her, which she resolves by being surprised you workout. 

Oh, very good thought. Or if they do work out, it's running or treadmill. So even though I've told my friends before that I do kettlebell, they don't remember it (or think there is no way I stuck with it) I forget sometimes what an anomaly it is for me to be strength training 

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Next time someone is surprised and says, "Oh, you work out?" respond with, "Yep.  Wanna arm wrestle?"

 

;-)

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Unfortunately, our society's standard for the ideal woman is "skinny" rather than strong! (Not that there's anything inherently wrong with being skinny, of course, just as there's nothing inherently wrong with being curvy or being muscular.) And because the standard is "skinny" rather than strong, like others have said, most people can't recognize when a woman is in shape unless they know what to look for.  I get the same thing a lot. Back when I was playing rugby, most people would get so surprised that I played such a physical sport, because "well, you don't really look like the athletic type, Nic." It stinks, and it can absolutely get under your skin.  But the people who matter (you, your loved ones, your community here on NF) know and are cheering on your efforts. <3 

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5 hours ago, Cheetah said:

Next time someone is surprised and says, "Oh, you work out?" respond with, "Yep.  Wanna arm wrestle?"

 

;-)

:friendly_wink:I'm pretty sure I'd be able to beat most of my friends,

5 hours ago, NicTheRugger said:

Unfortunately, our society's standard for the ideal woman is "skinny" rather than strong! (Not that there's anything inherently wrong with being skinny, of course, just as there's nothing inherently wrong with being curvy or being muscular.) And because the standard is "skinny" rather than strong, like others have said, most people can't recognize when a woman is in shape unless they know what to look for.  I get the same thing a lot. Back when I was playing rugby, most people would get so surprised that I played such a physical sport, because "well, you don't really look like the athletic type, Nic." It stinks, and it can absolutely get under your skin.  But the people who matter (you, your loved ones, your community here on NF) know and are cheering on your efforts. <3 

I think you are right. I am very glad to have all my NF friends 

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It was a good day today. It's still colder than normal, but it was sunny. I went on a nice long walk, and was even able to take off my hat and gloves for a bit. Some of the areas were still icy. It was in the neighborhood, so when the sidewalk was icy , I just walked in the road. Also did my hip and glute workout.  I'm mainly doing it for the purpose of getting stronger, but not gonna lie, I'm hoping  that my back end looks a bit finer in jeans too.:smile-new: Also still working on the flexibility movements for the forward fold. One of the movements I do is bear crawl. Today I took a video, so I will share.

 

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Hey you! As far as looking strong v looking skinny, I think the average human just doesn't understand what strong looks like. I didn't start noticing things like quad sweeps and well defined shoulders on the street until after I started lifting myself. I think you're damn strong and I hope you don't take their comments too seriously. Just remember, no matter how you look, when someone needs something lifted, you're on it and they can watch in awe.

 

As for your hip issues, I have a friend with a similar problem. She's had a couple of people with relevant degrees and certifications tell her to make her glutes stronger, and it will help with the hip stress. She hasn't been working on it for too long but it seems to be helping. I don't know exactly what your issues are, and I have zero relevant certifications or degrees, but I figured I'd share her solution with you. Hope the hips get better. 

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16 hours ago, Cheetah said:

Nice crawl!  Looks like fun!  It was sunny here today, too.  Almost felt like spring!

Thanks. Any illusions I had that spring was here were dashed when I wore up this morning and it was snowing.:smile-new:

6 hours ago, JessFit said:

Hey you! As far as looking strong v looking skinny, I think the average human just doesn't understand what strong looks like. I didn't start noticing things like quad sweeps and well defined shoulders on the street until after I started lifting myself. I think you're damn strong and I hope you don't take their comments too seriously. Just remember, no matter how you look, when someone needs something lifted, you're on it and they can watch in awe.

 

As for your hip issues, I have a friend with a similar problem. She's had a couple of people with relevant degrees and certifications tell her to make her glutes stronger, and it will help with the hip stress. She hasn't been working on it for too long but it seems to be helping. I don't know exactly what your issues are, and I have zero relevant certifications or degrees, but I figured I'd share her solution with you. Hope the hips get better. 

Yep, I think yo are right. I'm just going to need to be content with being Stealth Strong.

 

Thanks. Yeah,  with my hips, it just feels like they are super picky and get sore easy. Not super sore, most people would just say that's what happens when you are older. But, I think a lot of the things we say are aging are just that we spend so much of our lives sitting. Dr. Google shows that most PT agree on some basic hips and glute  exercises, so I figure I will just do them. 

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In that video you have some real muscle definition going on in legs and arms, you look amazing. People are blind!

 

On 2/21/2019 at 6:50 PM, Elastigirl said:

well, as far as skinny goes, you realize that people are comparing me to other middle aged woman, so it just means I don't look fluffy. See, I always pictured all your friends being super impressed by you and how strong you are. So yeah, I guess unless it's something you're into, you just don't realize it. I'm very thankful for you all. I'd love it if some of my in real life friends would be excited about strength training, but so far, they have zero interest.

Make suggestions. If I don't think it will work, I won't do them. Or I'll try them  because I haven't tried KB sport, and that might be fun too.

Challenge sounds fun. Let me think of something.

Aw man, there are so many awesome people at my gym I always feel very small and weak and unskilled xD Only thoughts that comfort me is that I'm sure I've still got the best kettlebell technique and.. well.. it's my gym :D And those friends that don't train, as you say, they don't realise it. 

It's a shame nobody is interested.. perhaps also one of the downsides of training at home, it makes it harder to make new friends who are already into strength training. But I suppose that's also what NF is for :)

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Very interesting discussion and good points.

 

I used to periodically wish I looked the part better, like my outside should reflect my strength or just the fact that I do a lot of activities better. I'm trying to think of what has changed as it's been a very long time since I felt that way. And I wonder if it's not since I got fed up with the whole body image/diet mentality thing and decided to stop trying to change my body. Skinny might be a compliment from her side because it's still the general societal ideal, but I wonder if it's not the "strong is the new skinny" mentality that plays a part in your case? Might be completely off but thought I'd bring it up for a different perspective. 

 

Either way, you know and we all know how strong you are and how much effort you're putting in even if nobody else does. Your body is still awesome no matter what other people think or see. You do you.

 

13 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Not super sore, most people would just say that's what happens when you are older. But, I think a lot of the things we say are aging are just that we spend so much of our lives sitting.

Totally agree! 

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21 hours ago, Sloth the Enduring said:

Just leave your big bell somewhere accessible. Next time someone doubts you, whip it out and start tossing it around.

Good plan.:smile-new:

20 hours ago, KB Girl said:

In that video you have some real muscle definition going on in legs and arms, you look amazing. People are blind!

 

Aw man, there are so many awesome people at my gym I always feel very small and weak and unskilled xD Only thoughts that comfort me is that I'm sure I've still got the best kettlebell technique and.. well.. it's my gym :D And those friends that don't train, as you say, they don't realise it. 

It's a shame nobody is interested.. perhaps also one of the downsides of training at home, it makes it harder to make new friends who are already into strength training. But I suppose that's also what NF is for :)

Thanks. I think it's not that people are blind, they just don't know what to look for. I can see why you might forgot how strong you are when you compare yourself to others in the gym. You are o t unsilled though, since most of the people in the gym were trained by you.

I was thinking the same thing about one of the downsides being I don't have any IRL friends who strength train. 

7 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Very interesting discussion and good points.

 

I used to periodically wish I looked the part better, like my outside should reflect my strength or just the fact that I do a lot of activities better. I'm trying to think of what has changed as it's been a very long time since I felt that way. And I wonder if it's not since I got fed up with the whole body image/diet mentality thing and decided to stop trying to change my body. Skinny might be a compliment from her side because it's still the general societal ideal, but I wonder if it's not the "strong is the new skinny" mentality that plays a part in your case? Might be completely off but thought I'd bring it up for a different perspective. 

 

Either way, you know and we all know how strong you are and how much effort you're putting in even if nobody else does. Your body is still awesome no matter what other people think or see. You do you.

 

Totally agree! 

Yes, right now I am feeling fluffier than I like, and I think that played into my sensitivity to her comment. I feel fluffier than I'd like, but at the same time, I look in the more and see more muscles. So, when other people don't see that, it makes me feel very insecure. I need to just not worry about changing my body. Easier said than done

 

Yeah for Katy Bowman, and the way she has changed my perspective. So many of my friends just accept the fact that the reason they can't squat down to the floor is because of their age, but after reading so much of Katy's stuff, I realized that has a lot more of just what we are doing and how we are moving than age. Not that age doesn't play into it, just not near as much as people think

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I was thinking your friend might appreciate your strength and fitness but not realize how hard you work to maintain and achieve. If she doesn't work out much herself, she might just think it's "natural."

 

And it's winter...guessing she doesn't see you flexing your guns every day :-)

 

[Just realized my post might have sounded dismissive...I didn't mean it that way. Was just trying to think about why people behave the way they do]

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4 hours ago, Xena said:

I was thinking your friend might appreciate your strength and fitness but not realize how hard you work to maintain and achieve. If she doesn't work out much herself, she might just think it's "natural."

 

And it's winter...guessing she doesn't see you flexing your guns every day :-)

 

[Just realized my post might have sounded dismissive...I didn't mean it that way. Was just trying to think about why people behave the way they do]

I really appreciate yours and other peoples thoughts  on it. I think it is very helpful to think about how other people see things. And maybe I need to flex my guns around my friends more.:friendly_wink:

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12 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

I really appreciate yours and other peoples thoughts  on it. I think it is very helpful to think about how other people see things. And maybe I need to flex my guns around my friends more.:friendly_wink:

 

 I agree with everyone else, and I support you in this plan...

 

(I tried to look for something appropriate and funny, but there are too many weapon references in my search...)

 

 

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