Tag Archives: dance

The True Virtue of the Turkey Trot and Other Tips for Holiday Fitness

Rockin' the turkey trot!

Rockin’ the turkey trot!

Thanksgiving will be here soon (at least if you live in the United States) and we’re swinging right into the major holiday season.  Between the holiday parties and the extra cooking and baking and gift shopping and family obligations, it can be especially difficult to keep fitness in your schedule.  Last week, I explained why the end of daylight savings time might be just the best excuse to start exercising EVER.  In theory, you’re getting an extra hour of sleep and thus, I reasoned, you could trick your body into getting up an hour earlier without too much pain.

So how did that work out for you?  Did you do it?  If not, don’t feel bad.  I’m not judging you.  But if you feel sad that you missed it, guess what: you get another chance!  Today is Veteran’s Day and many people (at least in the U.S.) have the day off.  It’s a perfect day to slide on those tennis shoes and get in a little exercise.  And if you are really especially clever, you can exercise your body and exercise your compassion at the same time by honoring a vet.  You could walk out and participate in a Veteran’s Day event in your area.  You could volunteer at a local Veteran’s Hospital.  You could take a walk and explore a nearby battleground.  You could even walk out to or march in a local Veteran’s Day parade.

You could even use today  an excuse to start training.  I’m training for an event which has become an annual tradition for yours truly–the Turkey Trot.  I usually participate in a 5K Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving Day that raises money for my local YMCA.  The course is short, fast and easy.  There are plenty of aid stations, and a large percentage of the participants are walkers like me.  I can take my time and have lots and lots of fun!

Participating in the Turkey Trot does mean that I have to amend the rules of 1-hour pants day.  I now have to add about an hour of sweat pants to the mix.  But I have found that this is one race that is scheduled on a day that I am not expected to speak or teach or have any professional obligations.  PLUS, I get to go right home, take a shower and a looooong Thanksgiving day nap right after.  Awesome!

And if a Turkey Trot isn’t right for you, how about a postprandial stroll to check out the early birds who manage to get holiday lights up by Thanksgiving Day?  You could honor their industry while strolling by on your way to a post dinner hot chocolate, or antacid.

Or you could always go out with your cousins and play a little football.  Although I should mention that activity is not without risk.

I don’t want to give you the impression that you have to exercise during the holidays or any other times.  That’s up to you.  You are the President and CEO of your own corpus!  But I am suggesting that if you’ve been looking for another little incentive or boost to get your fitness efforts going, you can honor the holidays and give an extra special gift to your body as well in the form of exercise (or the form of chocolate, ‘cuz chocolate is awesome too…)

And speaking of gifts, I’m pleased to announce that the third winner of The Fat Chick’s Great Pedometer Giveaway is Megan Page Montgomery!  Hey Megan, just drop me an email at jeanette at the fat chick dot com with your mailing address so I can ship your pedometer on out to you!  Yet another great excuse for getting started with a fabulous, shiny, new fitness program.

Love,

Jeanette DePatie

AKA The Fat Chick

P.S. Want to get access to FREE STUFF?  Just opt in RIGHT HERE!

A Sensible Approach to Healthy Kids

Folks of ALL ages dancing their hearts out!

Folks of ALL ages dancing their hearts out!

I have to admit that the blog post I did on Monday broke my heart.  The idea that it is even possible that a six-year-old girl may have died because of weight stigma is just so sad.  I need to reiterate, that none of us can know precisely what that doctor was thinking.  But the testimony she gave at her own trial makes me more than a little suspicious.

And you know what?  It doesn’t have to be this way.

There are far simpler ways to help kids be healthy.  Not the least of which is simply helping them find safe places to play and joyful places to move their bodies.  Because one of the best things we can do to help kids be healthy is offer them fun ways to get exercise. Yet another study came out this week that indicates that cognitive abilities among kids have a lot more to do with fitness levels than BMI.  But this fact, doesn’t seem to deter those who feel the best way to help kids be healthy is to send home a BMI report card.  Despite the fact that BMI is very loosely correlated with health in young children, and that focusing on BMI makes kids more likely to develop eating disorders, and that focusing on BMI tends to lead to shame in kids which not only makes them develop other bad health behaviors, but also tends to make them gain weight, we are STILL PERPETRATING THIS NONSENSE IN SCHOOLS.  Let’s focus on helping kids be healthy without increasing the risk from eating disorders.  Remember this chart?

dibetesSlides.001-001

Helping kids be healthy can be positive and fun.  This past weekend I led some fitness demonstrations at a local event.  The City of Hope hosted its Foothill Fitness Challenge event here in Duarte and over 1,200 people showed up.  It was so much fun!  I led two fun dance demonstrations and was so excited to see moms and dads and kids all dancing together and having a good time.  Check it out:

It made my heart so happy.  Little kids and big kids and grandmas were all dancing together.   If we want to help kids be happy, LET’S DO THAT!  Let’s find some kids, put on some music and dance with them.  Sure maybe it’s simplistic, but it’s also fun and is likely to do no harm.

So what do you say?  I challenge you to connect with a kid and go out and play this week.  Dance, bike, throw a ball around–whatever makes you (and them) happy.

Love,

Jeanette (AKA The Fat Chick)

I’m Back! (With a New Video)

Maybe we all need to do a little more dancing...

Maybe we all need to do a little more dancing…

Okay kids, I’m a little bit tardy (2 days) but I am back with a renewed desire to offer you juicy blogging goodness.  And I’m back with a brand new video showing just a little bit of what I’ve been up to for the past few weeks.

On September 18, we held our second annual Hot Flash Mob in Justin Herman Plaza on the Embarcadero in San Francisco.  The weather was GLORIOUS!  Our initial turnout was small, but after some rapid recruiting among those enjoying the fabulous San Francisco sunshine we got a crowd together and did our dance…

This crowd was a great mix!  There were men and women.  There were older people, younger people and in-betweenies.  There were thin people and fat people and people with amazing hair and even a cameo from one of San Francisco’s street population.  We all had a wonderful time.

And all of this makes me more determined THAN EVER to get groups of people together and get them dancing.  Because dancing is sort of like a magic catalyst.  It crosses line of age, shape, gender, class, language, economic status and more.  And even if you can’t do the moves just like I do, we can all find and share the beat together and boogie down.

It this time of serious strife and division, where I almost can’t bear to look at the news and hear the latest details about the complete breakdown of civility and communications, I think it is more important than ever to just dance.

Maybe that’s what we need to do.  Just get all the politicians in the world together to dance:

Then again, maybe not…

Love,

Jeanette

P.S. Want to get access to FREE STUFF?  Just opt in RIGHT HERE!

ROUND numbers–the 500th Post!

post500.001-001Well hello there!  Welcome to the 500th post on Fat Chick Sings!  It’s always great when we reach a ROUND number.  A 10-K, a 25th or 50th wedding anniversary, a 100 mile bike ride.  The goal of meeting ROUND numbers help fuel us, keep us going and move us forward.  The joy of reaching round numbers give us an opportunity to pause, celebrate, reflect and take stock.

In the final chapter of my book, The Fat Chick Works Out!, I encourage you to enjoy meeting your exercise goal and then to go ahead and schedule a little rest.  And then I go on to define “schedule a little rest”.  Schedule, means that you decide when you are going to rest, and for how long.  Little means that the rest is long enough to feel like a rest, but not so long as to cause you to lose all the muscles and momentum that you gained.  And rest means to actually take a real break from the thing  you were doing.

So I’m going to take my own advice and schedule a little 2 week vacation from blogging.  Don’t worry, I’ll be back October 1.  And during this time, I’m going to reflect on the blog and take stock.  The blog may come back looking a little different.  Maybe it will have  slightly different focus.  While I’m reflecting, I’d love to hear from you.  What do you like best about the blog?  What posts make you say, “meh.”?  You can leave me messages in the comments, or write me privately at jeanette at the fat chick dot com.

And it’s not like I’m dropping off the planet entirely.

Remember, if you live in the Bay area, come join us for a Hot Flash Mob in downtown San Francisco THIS Wednesday, September 18.  We’ll be meeting at a secret location in the Financial District at 12:15 PM and dancing at 12:30.  You can get access to the secret location when you RSVP either on the meetup group, or on the new Facebook event page.  I hope to see you there!

And it’s not too late to join me at the Size Diversity Task Force retreat in Las Vegas coming up October 11-13.  I’ll be hosting some super fun activities there and we are going to have a BLAST!

Thanks for hanging out with me.  See  you in two weeks!

Love,

The Fat Chick

Like my posts?  You’ll love my stuff!

Buy my book: The Fat Chick Works Out! (Fitness that is Fun and Feasible for Folks of All Ages, Shapes Sizes and Abilities)–available in softcover and e-book versions

Buy my DVD: The Fat Chick Works Out! (A Safe, Easy and Fun Workout for Klutzes, Wimps and Absolute Beginners!)

Buy a book or a DVD for a friend and save $5!  Just enter FRIENDBLFT in the discount code box!

Check out my Training Programs–both in person and via Skype (Starting at just $25!)

or

Book me to speak at your special event!

Sharing Some Boogie Time

Folks of all ages whoop it up at Summerfest!

As you may or may not know, I grew up near Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  I grew up in a state known for cows and cheese.  And as much as I dearly love, well, cheese anyways, I have to confess that one of the things I miss most about Wisconsin is the dancing.

I don’t know how it is in other parts of the country, but it seems like folks here in California don’t get together and shake their groove things in the same way as I remember from my childhood.  There are many clubs, and they are tray sheek* and stuff.  And you can get dressed up and stand in a line for the opportunity to spend 4 hours pay on an inch of wine in the bottom of an enormous glass.  Or you can go to burning man and smear on mud and body paint and dance in the bloody desert.  But I’m talking about a different kind of dancing.

In Wisconsin we had a party for virtually everybody down by the lake.  We had Summerfest and Polish Fest and Irish Fest and October Fest and Festa Italiana, and Greek Fest and Afro Fest and Indian Summer and the Lakefront Festival of the Arts and so on, and so on.  And what we did was get plastic cups full of beer, listen to amazing music and dance our little hearts out.  We danced on blankets.  We danced on picnic tables.  We danced with our girlfriends and our boyfriends.  We danced with folks we didn’t even know.

I miss it.

But I do get to enjoy dancing with the students in my classes several times a week.  And I do dearly love trying out new forms of music.  And I am so excited to be dancing in the street again for our upcoming Hot Flash Mob in San Francisco on September 18 at around noon.  I hope any of you who are near the Bay Area will join us.  Just RSVP with the meetup and we’ll make sure you get all the latest details about where and when.  Or just send me an email at jeanette at the fat chick dot com and I’ll make sure to mail  you the deets personally.  And I’d love it if you would share this info with anybody else you know who might be interested.

Because, frankly, I can’t WAIT to dance with you again.

Oh and stay tuned for a very special surprise in my next blog post!

Love,

The Fat Chick

*Fronsch for verreh, verreh sexy.

Like my posts?  You’ll love my stuff!

Buy my book: The Fat Chick Works Out! (Fitness that is Fun and Feasible for Folks of All Ages, Shapes Sizes and Abilities)–available in softcover and e-book versions

Buy my DVD: The Fat Chick Works Out! (A Safe, Easy and Fun Workout for Klutzes, Wimps and Absolute Beginners!)

Buy a book or a DVD for a friend and save $5!  Just enter FRIENDBLFT in the discount code box!

Check out my Training Programs–both in person and via Skype (Starting at just $25!)

or

Book me to speak at your special event!

Come dance with us in the Bay Area!

Hello my dears!  It’s September of 2013, and do you know what that means?  It means it’s time for some Hot Flash Mobs!  This is the second annual installment of Hot Flash Mob Movement, a worldwide, synchronized dance flash mob movement held to honor perimenopausal and menopausal women everywhere.  We’ll be kicking things off in San Francisco on September 18 in honor of Menopause Awareness Month.  Last year we held several hot flash mobs in the Bay Area, and  Arkansas, and New York City and Huntington Beach, CA.

This movement was the brainchild of  me: (certified fitness professional, Jeanette DePatie AKA The Fat Chick) and menopause expert dear friend Dr. Eve Agee.

Frustrated by the negative and fear-mongering approach to menopause in our society we asked this question:

“What if instead of fearing menopause, we threw a great big party to celebrate it?”

That’s why we dreamed up the notion of The Hot Flash Mob Movement, a series of spontaneous, hot, group dance experiences allowing women from around the world to get together, have a big laugh and shake their collective groove things.  Our first 2013 hot flash mob is scheduled for September 18 in downtown San Francisco.  Interested?  Check out our meet up!  Remember, dance makes EVERYTHING better!

Love,

The Fat Chick

Desires–What I Wanna

I LOVE jammie time!

I LOVE jammie time!

Not all cravings are for food.  Sure, chocolate chip cookies are important, but there are other things in life.  And in learning to listen to what my body wants to eat, I am learning to broaden the question and listen to the other things my body wants.

At some point every day, my body craves rest.  Especially since I am such an early riser, there comes a point where my body wants to just curl up somewhere under a nice blankie and get some sleep. And it feels so good!  I love, love, love my jammies.  In fact when my friend and super talented photographer Kelly Varner came over to take some pictures, we went through the closet to look for some clothes.  When she saw my collection of PJs she laughed and said, “you have a lot of pajamas!”  To which I replied, “of course!  Jammies are awesome!”  At some point in the evening, I’ve been known to shout out, “What time is it?”  To which my husband has learned the Pavlovian retort, “It’s jammie time!”  At which point I’ve been known to burst into my own version of “Jammie Time” which is based on “Suppertime” from You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown.  I’ve even got a special little song I sing when I slip into a bed made with clean sheets fresh out of the dryer.

Sometimes, I really just crave some time alone.  I want to shut the door and shut out the world.  I want to read or surf the net or display my wrath via computer games and I don’t want to talk to anybody or be with anybody.  Sometimes I crave company.  Sometimes I want to talk to somebody and sometimes, I just want to go to the coffee shop and sit in a room with a bunch of strangers–just to be somewhere other than my room all by myself.

Sometimes I feel the need to go out into the world and sing and dance and play with others.  Sometimes I want to walk or bike or stretch or shake my groove thing.  And sometimes I need to withdraw from the world and be outside and be with nature.  Sometimes I want to shut off my phone and simply look at some clouds or some trees or the ocean.

My point is that there are many, many kinds of cravings in my life.  Some of these cravings involve food.  Many do not.  But I find that when I am ignoring cravings in one area of my life, other cravings tend to intensify.  If I’m craving alone time but find I can’t get it, I find myself craving more sleep.  If I’m craving sleep, but can’t get it, I find myself craving sweet or starchy foods.  When I’m feeling the need to go out and dance and shout and shake my groove thing and can’t do it, I crave shopping for new things.  I have learned that there are many “displacements” for when I ignore the underlying cravings in my life.  And I have learned that my life works better when I can find a way to satisfy the underlying cravings rather than the displacement cravings.  Now life being what it is, I can’t always get whatever I want whenever I want it.  And I’m a little old to flop down on the floor of the local grocery store to have a kicking and screaming tantrum.  But even when I can’t have what I want, I find it helpful to know what it is.  And I’ve found it helpful to make peace with the replacement cravings too.  They are all part of me and it’s all good.  It’s all good.

Love,

The Fat Chick