Blogilates Transforms Exercise Into a Daily Indulgence
By Nicole Croom
It’s once again that time of year when motivations for maintaining New Year’s resolutions are disappearing or, depending on your level of dedication, have long been suspended. A fantastic time of year for gym rats who were pushed from their machines with the onslaught of newbies come January 1st and can now reclaim their domain, but a disheartening time for those of us who desperately want physical activity to be something we do, not because we are obligated to, but because it makes us feel happy and healthy.
The problem is transforming exercise from a chore to a stress-relieving daily indulgence is not something that comes easily to most. First of all, finding a workout that you actually look forward to is hard. Partly because there are so many options, but also because boredom can set in pretty quickly. Second of all, being your own cheerleader is tough, exponentially more so when you are also your own coach AND the star player on a one-person team.
That’s where Blogilates comes in! (My apologies to our male readers, the site is definitely geared towards your female counterparts, but the workouts are still great if you are a fan of Pilates.)
Blogilates is a health and fitness blog that was created by Cassey Ho, a certified fitness instructor with 10 years of experience and a design entrepreneur. It’s got workout videos, monthly workout plans, full meal plans, recipes, advice articles and an inspirational “Before & After” section where POPsters—Cassey’s followers— who have used Blogilates to turn their health around share their inspirational stories. And the best part: it’s all FREE.
In the “About Me” section of the site, Cassey states, “I came up with the idea for POP Pilates as I was teaching classes at the gym because I loved the music on the radio and I wanted to give Pilates a little boost in energy. The reaction was positive, my students loved it, and I’ve been teaching a more upbeat style of Pilates ever since!!”
If there is one word to describe Cassey and her workouts it is “upbeat.” Her overt enthusiasm might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I think her pep is perfect for those who need positive encouragement to push through a challenging strength or cardio session.
There is also a real sense of community to the Blogilates site. POPsters are always offering encouragement to one another and Cassey herself tries to address and encourage members individually. And if she senses a change in the tone of the community she calls it out, “… if you don’t appreciate being a part of the Blogilates community, don’t bring your negativity here. I’m protecting the sweet, happy, and fun personality that most of us embody. I want to feel comfortable when I come here and I want our POPsters to feel welcome sharing personal stories.”
But, above all else, the thing I appreciate most about Cassey is the way she fights against the notion of “ideal beauty.” In a December post titled, “Your thigh gap’s not good enough FYI,” Cassey addresses a discussion posted to her Instagram that criticized her “thigh gap,” a recent craze wherein the larger the space between your thighs is when you are standing with your feet together the better, something that is determined mostly by bone structure and not weight, as so many believe.
Cassey wrote, “I’m not in the slightest way offended or hurt (so don’t worry about me – I love my legs) but I am concerned about where our heads are in terms of what beauty means. From time to time, I like to remind you guys about loving your body for what it is every step of the way on your fitness journey… A reminder that everything you work for isn’t just for vanity, that only lasts so long… but where does it stop—when can you finally accept that you’re beautiful and that I’m beautiful?... I want you to take a moment and disconnect the fact that a physical attribute can bring you true happiness. You’re worth more than the distance between your thighs.”
To try-out Cassey’s workouts for yourself and check out more moving blog posts go to: http://www.blogilates.com
Nicole Croom is a second-year student in the School of Medicine.