Three trends I’d like to see end in 2014

gluten free

I’ll have my gluten and eat it, too

I’m all about healthy living and anything that encourages people to get up off the couch. But I am not a fan of trends that go to an extreme–extreme eating restrictions, extreme running, extreme lifting, etc. And I kind of feel that 2013 perhaps saw more of this than was healthy, or it least it seemed that way to me. With that in mind, here are a few of the trends that I’d like to see less of in 2014:

  • Unnecessary gluten-free diets–I know I’m going to get backlash here, but…people, it’s gotten out of control. SO many runners/triathletes have adopted this lifestyle. The reality is that only about 6 percent to 7 percent of the population truly has gluten sensitivity,and this post is not aimed at those folks. But if you take a look around at the healthy living blogosphere these days, you’re going to see a much bigger percentage of folks cutting gluten out of their diets. Why this has caught on like fire I’m not quite sure but it certainly is not helped by the fact that anti-wheat/grain books are flooding the marketplace right now. I know everyone and their brother claims their GI systems feel so much better/they have much more energy, etc., when adopting a gluten free diet, but the stats just don’t support so many people needing this change. I truly feel that the bottom line is this: much of the foods that contain gluten are those that are highly processed, and those are not foods that make us feel good. Get rid of the processed stuff and you’re bound to feel better. Grains are not always the enemy and can in fact offer plenty of great nutrition. Don’t jump on the GF bandwagon unless you have been medically diagnosed with a sensitivity. You can read up more on the restrictive diet bandwagon here on my RD friend Becky’s blog, by the way.
  • Extreme pregnancy fitness–Another rabbit hole, but here I go. I think we’ve gotten a bit carried away with cheering on the ever-more-fit pregnant woman. Let me say, I ran all the way through both pregnancies, so I’m very supportive of pregnant women staying fit. But–I think we’re starting to glorify the extremely fit preggo example and I’m not so sure this is a good thing. Staying fit is one thing, but taking it to a level of competition–who can be the fittest pregnant woman–just kind of turns my stomach. Again, social media and pictures of very pregnant women doing very intense workouts fuels this fire. For nine short months, let’s support healthy, fit pregnancies, but let’s not create an environment where women try to outdo one another while pregnant. The same goes for the first post-partum months. Maybe dialing back a bit on the sideline cheering for who can lose the baby weight the quickest is something to consider.
  • More miles, more marathons–It’s all over Instagram, our blogs, our other platforms. I’m as guilty as the next here, but I do think we are getting carried away with our inspiration coming from who can run the most miles/complete the most marathons. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–I don’t think we are built to sustain, long-term, all those miles and all those marathons and ultras. Right now, bodies may be holding up with all that mileage and racing, but extremes do catch up to us down the road. Let’s take a more long-term approach to things and keep the extreme stuff a little more in check. We all probably got started because we wanted to lead healthier lifestyles so let’s do that. More is not always more.

So there you have it–my opinionated take on three trends that dominated 2013. I think it all goes back to the simple tenet that moderation is key, in all areas of life.

And you? 

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  1. says

    I’m just cool with letting other people do whatever floats their boat. If they want to run tons of miles and marathons and being fit pregnant ladies, they’ll have to deal with any consequences that result. I’m more than okay to let them do just that.
    Karen recently posted..Searching for Understanding….My Profile

  2. says

    Diet!!! Low Carb, No Fat, No Meat, No Gulten… I would love to try that, but I like food too much. Bread, Chocolate, Bacon, Eggs, Avo, Steak, Wine, Beer…

    Pregnant Moms, I’ve seen friends loose wieght (in the face) good thing, but I’ve also see work friends continue smoking through a pregancy, bad thing!

    Too much miles, there are so many people out there who get it wrong in training and then wonder why the marathon doesn’t work. I would love to run 100mile weeks, but I don’t have time to recover in the day, I have to work… (up to 60-65 in big for me) The pro’s have time to rest in the day, so they can handle 100 mile weeks! Too many marathon? it’s easy to run a marathon, but it’s racing that takes it out of you, and while I can jog a 3 hour marathon for fun, a 2h40 sits in my body for weeks, so know how long you need to recover for, and go you there and ROCK 2014
    Coach Dion recently posted..WINTER IS ON THE WAYMy Profile

  3. says

    I like to experiment with new ways of eating just to see how my body feels but I agree, not everyone is gluten sensitive. And the extreme pregnancy thing is one I really don’t get. Yes, I workout out while pregnant but it was for maintaining my fitness rather than pushing the limits. In doing that, I still was able to return to my pre-pregnancy weight rather quickly and resume normal workouts.
    Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted..14 Goals for 2014My Profile

  4. says

    I won’t necessarily disagree with you about everyone being on a gluten-free diet these days. It seems like a HUGE number of people all of the sudden have allergic reactions to gluten, or have suddenly come down with a bad case of Celiac Disease … when I’m pretty sure they have no idea what glueten really is. It reminds me EXACTLY of a few years ago when every single kid on the planet was diagnosed with ADHD. Kids were unnecessarily popping Adderall like candy from a PEZ dispenser. Of course there are legitimate cases with both, but sometimes I think we live in a society that is too eager to be diagnosed with something because it excuses behavior or makes us special in some way … but I digress.

    However, when I’m leaning up for a race, I’ll actually do try to cut out most of the gluten and sugar from my diet. I just feel better and it seems to help me drop a few pounds. It’s been proven that the wheat that is manufactured today is actually an inflammatory, but I would never recommend a diet that eliminates all wheat from the diet … I love bread too much.
    Jim recently posted..Marathon In 8 Weeks???My Profile

  5. says

    I did go GF this summer as an experiment not because of an intolerance. I do feel better, but it’s probably as you say – I’m eating less processed food. I am sticking to it because I’m a creature of habit and do better with guidelines (and hey it’s working!), but I do allow myself some of my favorite Cincinnati pizza – that as of now IS NOT gluten-free. :)
    AmyC recently posted..Fitness Friday: Five Favorites of 2013My Profile

  6. says

    ohh interesting on the more miles. I didn’t join the run this year because i don’t know that i could handle over 2000 miles injury free, honestly I’ve run roughly the same mileage for many years and that seems to be where i am best. But then again we all like having a goal to shoot for and if it gets people moving then I’m ok.
    Amanda @runtothefinish recently posted..One Word Resolution: PeaceMy Profile

  7. Colleen says

    You took the words right out of my mouth.

    I’ve thought these all year… Two of them even pushed me over the metaphorical blogging cliff. My biggest peeve is GF. If you’re diagnosed, cool, some people need it. If you aren’t, stop, stop trying to be cool and stop eating crap… all around you’ll feel better. Plus, there is this horrible misconception that GF is a diet- no- it can actually make you gain weight pretty quick; if you are eating like a person with celiac would (trust me, I would know). It’s a bad fad and everyone who hasn’t had confirmation from a doctor needs to get off the wagon.

    And for mile increases… I tried to keep up once but then I needed time to do other stuff like; sit on the couch and eat ice cream.

  8. says

    Fit pregnancies? I have not seen this and I am ok with not seeing it ever. I do not get it and it seems a bit selfish. I am sure that those that are the fittest pregnant will tell me they checked with their dr and it is alright but it just seems like it would not be.

    I do jot get that. The gluten thig is overdone. Period and end of story.

    As for ultras I am just finding my way into this but I am making sure not to do over-do it for this first go round. I am making it like my first ironman. See what works and what doesn’t and then decide on number two and what changes need to be made so that recovering occurs.

    Great post. I will still be your friend even if others drop off. Speak your mind.
    Jason @ Cook Train Eat Race recently posted..Rocky Raccoon 50 Mile Ultra Trail Run Training UpdateMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      I’ll be doing an ultra, too, one of these days and I’m not judging that. I think I’m more reflecting on the extreme weekly runs, constant marathoning, etc. that I am seeing out there. Again, more is not always more!

      • says

        I hear ya. I agree with the extreme weekly runs in that people are not doing what they need to recover and then risk injury. As you know I am a huge believer in the proper recovery and this training cycle for RR50 has been very focused on getting the proper recovery for myself.

        This is one reason I love the Hokas (I know you aren’t a fan) because after that long Saturday run when I go back out for 12-13 miles on Sunday the Hokas are a life saver in that the cushioning saves your quads.

        Of course, food is also a HUGE part of that recovery process and sleep. This week is a pull back week and while I have not been running as much I have been to the pool 3x and rode my trainer 2x this week. Today I did not run at all and will swim this evening. All of this in prep for the 67, 69,71 mile weeks that are coming up in the next three weeks before taper week and then race week.
        Jason @ Cook Train Eat Race recently posted..Rocky Raccoon 50 Mile Ultra Trail Run Training UpdateMy Profile

  9. says

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

    I’ll take the gluten free thing a step further-and again it’s 110% opinion-that the placebo effect may be at play, along with rationalizing the cost of the food itself! for those NOT diagnosed as intolerant.

    In a sense, I’ve observed another type of competition with the extremes- like who can push the envelope the furthest. Life is made to be enjoyed, not micromanaged and celebrated for its micromanagement via “habit competition”. Forgive my cynicism, but I’m a recovering exrtremist, or wannabe extremist finding balance much more rewarding.
    Adrienne recently posted..The ‘Awesome’ List aka Things That Happened in the Past 12 MonthsMy Profile

  10. says

    Great post! I have always found it a bit odd that so many people “need” gluten free diets or take it further. I will never understand. I’ll never understand the need to run higher mileage then elite marathoning males but it’s hard to justify that in the blogging world.
    Hollie recently posted..Sugar Free for 2 Whole DaysMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      Hollie–love how you put it “the need to run higher mileage than elite marathoning males,” yes, that’s it exactly!

  11. says

    Proof that you are my long-lost, awesome older sister! I LOVE this & agree 100%. I also ran through both pregnancies but immediatedly dialed back intensity, duration, and frequency. I also gave myself permission to swap a nap for a workout when my body needed it. I was ready to get back after it after my girls were born, but I still went easy on myself while I was breastfeeding. In the grand scheme, that time was so brief and it was more important to focus on my girls than on racing/competing. And I’m proud to say after I weaned #2, I had a fabulous 2013 chockful of PRs. And, Amen on the mileage/marathon! My body does much better on less mileage and spaced out events. Besides, I want to be the cute old lady running in my 80s, so I gotta take care of my body!
    Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama recently posted..Diagnose and Cure Your Holiday HangoverMy Profile

  12. says

    Agree on all fronts, although I cannot speak to pregnancy fitness. Your third point really resonates as it’s almost an epidemic with people chasing numbers in various forms and sacrificing quality races (and runs) to do it. I was impressed when Dean Karnazes did 50 in 50 in 50, but call me jaded, I am not impressed with 13 in 2013 (marathons or halfs) when I read “how” many of these runners got there. If someone isn’t really racing and at times just going through the motions, how can they gloat and call it an accomplishment? To each their own I guess.
    Jamoosh recently posted..Beer 13My Profile

  13. Wendy says

    Thanks for this! I completely agree with you on all 3 points. The gluten free diet is really trendy! For the past year, when I see patients in the office with stomach pains, the first thing they ask about is celiac disease. Aaay!

    And don’t get me started on higher mileage. I developed a stress fracture in my foot after training for a marathon. Interestingly, I am crosstraining with a crossfit coach, and the CFs claim that they can train for a marathon with the longest run being 16 miles. I would definitely follow that approach if I was going to do another marathon! I’ve been seeing the positive results of training with her in my own running. Besides, it has been a blast mixing it up!!

  14. says

    I’ll join you on the ledge. I think some of these extremes may discourage others from trying. Sometimes it’s hard to be proud of my 10 mile PR when friends are PRing marathons or IMs. I just try hard not to compare myself to others. As for gluten — mmmm, I love bread!
    Coco recently posted..Setting Daily Goals For 2014My Profile

  15. says

    I think you bring up some interesting topics! I agree that those who are not gluten sensitive don’t need to eat gluten-free, but I know sometimes gluten intolerances don’t show up in blood work. I am all for those who want to try and cure ailments and feel better by trying to go gluten-free and seeing how they feel because of it, but I agree that if gluten doesn’t effect you then you probably don’t have to completely avoid it!
    Jana @ Happy Wife Healthy Life recently posted..The Great Relationship DebateMy Profile

  16. says

    Totally agree on ALL OF THIS! Even though I am actually cutting back on gluten now myself, (I have a problem pancreas), I still refuse to go entirely gluten-free unless I were confirmed celiac. I just lower the amount of gluten consumption but I refuse to become fanatical about it. And now and then I’ll have a good pizza! All of my ancestors lived on rye breads. And yes to the extreme pregnancy fitness. It’s ridiculous now! And the “over-running” is out of control. If people want to overdo it, by all means, it’s their freedom to do so, but I think it sometimes is masking other psychologically deficient issues. (I believe these are heated topics, haha!)
    Christina recently posted..Happy New Year 2014 and a Spring Marathon!My Profile

  17. says

    I’m loving this. The gluten free thing drives me insane. Gluten free does not mean healthier. Same with paleo and all of the other extremely restrictive diets.

    I’m pregnant now and literally have no idea how people do the “extremes” during pregnancy. I’m still running, but it’s about half of what I did before at a seriously slow pace. If I don’t feel like running or exercising, I don’t. It’s that easy.
    Kari @ Running Ricig recently posted..Can you tell I’m not happy about this?My Profile

  18. says

    Most people aren’t gluten intolerant, they are just looking for a quick fix for dieting. It’s the new low carb or low fat.

    I ran during my last pregnancy and I hope current pregnant runners realize that no one really cares how much you do. Even you won’t care. Taking it easy won’t “ruin” you as a runner and make it impossible to get back. Everyone just needs to take a deep calming breath.

    I run fairly low mileage for an ultrarunner but I don’t know that I’d get a huge benefit from a 100 mile week that I couldn’t get from a 65 mile week. I’m not running for money after all :)
    Kara recently posted..Logic has no place hereMy Profile

  19. says

    UG Agreed to the GF diet. I will enjoy the day when that fad diet heads out the door. I hate it when people fall for “diets” with faulty science or no science to back it up, and that’s one of the latest and greatest, along with raw food, juicing, and that stupid alkaline/acidic nonsense.Gluten doesn’t make you gain weight. Cookies do =)
    Steph recently posted..Lazy BloggingMy Profile

  20. says

    Yes yes, and yes! I curse the Wheat Belly book and all my colleagues and friends who read it and tried to cut gluten and wheat out for no good reason.
    Although I dont run a ton of miles, I’m trying to be smarter about training so my body will allow me to run for decades longer. With that being said, I want to start getting into ultras but I’m going to try and do it slowly and keep my running at 3-4 days a week.
    Abby @ Change of Pace recently posted..2013 reflection (in photos)My Profile

  21. Dawn says

    Hmmmm… I think it’s fun to try new things and push yourself out of your comfort zone every once in awhile (minus during pregnancy)…. If I hadn’t have done my 12/12 I would never have met so many amazing people including you!! Or learned things about myself, good and bad. :) *not loosing a follower over this…you’re too awesome. Happy new Year friend!

  22. bob says

    I’d like to see the end of “irritable blogger syndrome”–the trend of bloggers suddenly feeling the need to rip on something because it bugs them at that moment. Whether it’s Pete suddenly deciding a few months back to poo-poo the minimalist kind of approach he has long advocated (probably because he and his wife were getting injured), or you complaining about people running “too many miles” (maybe because you actually wish you were running that much) it just undermines their credibility when it’s obvious that there are some personal issues going on. And as for the gluten-free stuff: anyone who is gluten-free will probably stick with something that has yielded significant and tangible benefits regardless of how annoying some people think the diet is. Yeah, people who are gluten-free are annoying. But so are people who care about the environment, and recycling, and politics, and all that other lame stuff. They are easy to make fun of. Haha. Fuck them. Stupid prius-driving losers.

      • bob says

        Actually, I was just coming back to say that the great thing about them is that that they don’t exist if you never seek them out. But it’s a shame to alienate people for no reason…

        It’s funny the kind of people who resort to the come-back “well, don’t watch/read/look at it, then!” Do you know what I mean?

        • MissZippy says

          No, I really don’t because it’s such simple solution, isn’t it? And if you really read my post, my point is…let’s keep extremes in check.

          • bob says

            What it really means is “go away, I don’t like your opinion.” I think I’ll stick around all the blogs I read. It’s interesting to get a voyeuristic experience with people who feel the need to put so much out there. heehee

  23. says

    YES – what is it with the extremes? A marathon a week, ultra after ultra. Makes me worry for people b/c at some point the body is going to give. It just will. Or maybe that’s me being cynical from my own injuries. And I’m also with you on being GF just for the fad(ness) of it. My sister and MIL are highly intolerant and it’s annoying to see others joining the bandwagon just b/c they think they can lose weight and then when people really are intolerant then they are often seen as lumped in with the rest (sorry for that ramble LOL).
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  24. says

    I think I love you! 😉

    I am all for do what works for you & what feel right for you.. but yes, many people jump on the bandwagon vs. really knowing if it is right for them. Plenty of research saying the GF thing if you don’t need it, don’t cause there are vitamins & minerals to be made up if you are GF.

    On the extreme pregnancy – I have never been pregnant so.. but I think docs need to weigh in here – I am useless here.

    On the mileage – I am with you.. more for the people I read that I see run thru injuries because they refuse to stop running or refuse to cut back – long term you only hurt yourself…
    Jody – Fit at 56 recently posted..Healthy Recipes for the Lazy Cook – That Would be Me too!My Profile

  25. says

    I have a wheat allergy (as well as dozens of other severe food allergies) and I had to remove wheat and gluten from my diet… is a pain in the rear to read every stinking label and I shed a tear when I see people drink real beer and eat real pizza. If people want to try living GF, more power to them. Personally, I think it sucks. I don’t love it, it is not fun, and I have not lost one pound. (Can you tell I am feeling sorry for myself? LOL)

  26. says

    AGREE. The trend seems to be people using GF as an excuse to restrict. it’s the trendy thing to do. Joke’s on them, because gluten seems to be delicious!

    Pregnancy fitness: I just don’t even know how people manage to do that stuff. I certainly did NOT have the energy while I was pregnant. I feel like it’s obviously ideal to stay fit and healthy, with the supervision of your trusted medical source. But if their ob (or whatever they use) feels like it’s an appropriate amount of activity, that’s between them, and not my business. The driving need to do those things, though, and to showcase them, smacks of insecurity and a grab for attention that makes me not trust their message – it makes it seem like it’s a performance purely for the shock factor.

    Mileage – eh. this is such a grey area. I will never be an elite runner – for starters, I’m not willing to cut myself down to a competitive “race weight”, I’m not willing to put in the training and the time required, so racing for me is more like “racing”. I’m not racing to be a winner, I’m always just racing against myself. I can see, in the edges of my mind, how (especially for a mid-packer like me) it’s appealing to go for the distance instead of the speed – I can run 26 miles at an easy pace far more comfortably than I can 6.2 at a fast pace. I know someone that I FEEL fits into this category, and does the mileage for the shock value, for the need to get a reaction from people. it’s pretty disconcerting.

    I think the common denominator in all of these, is the need that people have for attention grabbing – Oh, I’m GF because it’s helped heal my gut; I did my WOD and I’m 34 weeks!; I ran 20 marathons in two years. It’d be interesting to know the difference in those people without the platforms they have for promotion.
    Heather recently posted..January 1My Profile

  27. says

    I agree with you! I can’t understand the whole gluten free thing for people who don’t have a gluten sensitivity. Since I have not been pregnant, I can’t really attest to the extreme pregnancy fitness thing, but I know what when I do get pregnant my priority will be on staying healthy for the baby. And as for the more miles/marathons…I think that some of our healthy habits can get addicting and we might always want to push to do more…but maybe instead of doing more until we are burned out, we should take a step back and try something different. (I know this is easier said than done, especially for runners!)
    Lisa @ Running out of Wine recently posted..Plans and Goals for 2014My Profile

  28. says

    I’m all about moderation. I feel better with less gluten/wheat, but like you said, more real food is the better option :) I also suffer from feeling completely inadequate with my training; I don’t know how people run back to back marathons or ultras but somehow it seems the norm. This post didn’t lose me as a reader!
    TriGirl recently posted..13 in 2013 (Lucky 13!)My Profile

  29. says

    I agree that a GF diet is not for everyone, but there are a very large number of people that it does work for. My son was having two seizures a day right after Halloween, he was diagnosed with epilepsy in November, we put him on a doctor prescribed modified ketogenic diet (No grain or sugar) and boom, he has drastically reduced the humber of seizures he gets. It does not work for everyone, but it has been a miracle for our family. To think that sugar and grain effect brain function that much is seriously eye opening. My husband and I both are doing it with him. After adapting to it, I have less migraines, feel full all day, and I have lost almost 10 pounds. I can’t say I get less brain fog and we will see how this new way of eating goes while I am in marathon training, but overall it has prevented my son from having to take large does of very strong medication with serious side effects. Overall, I wouldn’t be sad to see the trend go away, but I am grateful for the information and the great many bloggers who endorse this lifestyle and are sharing their recipes.

  30. says

    Interesting post. I am happy you decided to write about it! The g-free diets are absolutely out of control. People saying they have a “gluten intolerance” has become a fad, which I will never understand.

    As for the fit pregnancy: I am struggling with this in a huge way. I have been a rational person and now that I am pregnant I am completely IRRATIONAL about working out. I feel like there is so much pressure to live up to the ‘fit pregnant woman’ standard that has been set. So when I feel like shit and can’t work out, or can’t run more than a mile or can’t even get off the couch because I am so uncomfortable, I feel like I am not being as healthy as I should or not trying hard enough for my kid. It is a shitty feeling that I know shouldn’t even be happening, but like I said: completley irrational thoughts flood my mind.

    I’m coping by simply doing my best and getting my sweat on when I have the energy. Forcing it would most likely have not-so-wonderful consequences!

    Thanks for the post, I hope that comment made just a little bit of sense, it really is all that I think about!
    Ashley recently posted..SnowMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      Ashley–really interesting to hear it from this perspective. I guess I was lucky in that my pregnancies were ages ago before this whole trend. Pregnancy is not a time to feel guilty for needing to back off…follow your body’s cues and your doc’s advice and let the rest go.

  31. says

    I agree with all of these and they are all based around a similar thing: letting comparison win over what’s best for you. Trying to be the most in shape pregnant lady or run the most marathons or have the most restricted diet is all about letting others cloud the real target of your goals.
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  32. says

    The unnecessary gluten kind of drive me a little batty because it makes people who truly need to ditch gluten, silly. I cannot have gluten, and when I mention it, people say “oh you’re one of those” -Yes, I am one of those, but because I HAVE TO!!!!! GROAR!!
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  33. says

    I think that eating gluten free has gotten to be too much of a trend and I am going to hate to see it disappear for those of us who really do NEED it. But I tend to be in the camp that thinks that we can get our nutrients from BETTER sources than grains of any kind so not sorry to see people eating fewer of them at all.
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  34. says

    I could not agree more. Especially in regards to fitness and pregnancy. Surprisingly one of my most popular posts is the one I wrote called “I wish I hadn’t run during pregnancy” More and more women are commenting that they arrived at the same conclusion or at least wished they had lightened up on themselves during their pregnancy and not pushed so much. It is a growing trend a very unfortunate one.
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  35. says

    You raise some interesting points – especially the GF craze…I swear some days on social media I feel like I’m the only person no going GF. Unless you have a diagnosed condition, just lose the processed foods and you’ll feel better…no need to go extreme!
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  36. says

    I agree too especially when it comes to loading on the miles and seeing how far you can push your body. Last year I had a ton of great races including qualifying for Boston, racing it and re-qualifying but I raced too much, pushed my body too hard and in the end had an injury that has plagued me now for months. This year I plan to train smarter and plan a smarter race schedule. I have cut out some races even though they are some of my favorites because I know if I overload my race schedule my body will break down again. Thank you for your thought provoking post!

  37. says

    OMG DITTO TO ALL!!! Seriously! LOVED this post. I feel the same way right now about bloggers who seem to LOVE every brand and want to be an ambassador or be sponsored by everyone. It’s fake and not necessary. And, greedy. What’s worse is I’ve seen people selling their free stuff on running sites. Makes me sick. END RANT.
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  38. says

    I totally agree with you on all 3 of these!!!
    I realize we all have to do what works for us but I think a lot of times people are putting unnecessary stress on themselves because they feel a need to keep up and do what everyone else is doing.
    When I first started blogging and reading others fitness blogs I struggled because I wanted to participate in challenges and try new things just because “everyone” else was. But I realized that I just need to do what works for me and not try to run as many miles or do running streaks just because it is a current thing.
    Thanks for writing such a great post!
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    • MissZippy says

      Yes, I think so much of the problem lies in the influence of social media…too much comparing, too much keeping up with the Jones’.

  39. says

    Interesting post! Yes, I agree that moderation is key. I predict that the GF trend will eventually disappear like the Atkins/high-protein diet fad (and the many countless other diet fads), but the other two trends will probably be around for a while as people keep pushing the body’s fitness/endurance limits. One trend I’d like to see end? Jumping on the bandwagon and doing whatever health and fitness thing others are doing even if it isn’t right for you.
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  40. says

    How about I turn this around and talk about what I DO want to see in 2014? [Incidentally, it addresses everything that you have here.] I want to see people learning how to listen to their OWN bodies.

    Tuning out what the world is saying and genuinely listening to your body (and learning how to separate your mind from your body!) is incredibly hard, but so worthwhile. It pays off in the short, middle, and long-term, and if more people practiced it, there would be more moderation and less comparison-trapping. People would be eating better, working out in moderation, and taking care of their whole person (and the little person they’re growing). They would also be more flexible and safe athletes (in my opinion).

    The challenge to me is…how to advocate – and educate – this kind of self-awareness in an increasingly comparative and competitive society?
    Holly @ Run With Holly recently posted..Year of Running: 2013 in ReviewMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      Ah…my wise bloggy friend Holly! I love your spin on this and you are encapsulating what I should have said! Thanks.

  41. says

    I’m so glad you put these up. I’m sick of people trying to push a gluten-free (or Paleo, or vegan or name-the-latest-trendy-diet) on me. I think lots of people claiming benefits from gluten free (not those with true intolerance) are losing weight because they are actually, you know, dieting. I eat variety and healthy and still get the occasional desert. I think any extreme is bad.

    That said, I am training for a couple marathons this year. Not to keep up with the Joneses but because I want to see what this body can do and hopefully do it safely. I love running and enjoy training, so it’s not just a notch on my belt.
    PV recently posted..Starting Off RightMy Profile

  42. says

    I don’t care if people want to be gluten free but I think if you are just trying to lose weight than there are many other healthy ways to go about it. Any fad diet is a bit annoying to me, since I am still of the school that you should eat as many fruits and veggies and real foods as you can, exercise and get outside as much as possible. That’s my diet advice. But have a cookie once in a while for goodness sakes.
    Travel Spot recently posted..Out With The OldMy Profile

  43. says

    When it comes to diets, I always go back to one of my favorite Bloom County strips, where Opus wants to lose weight and Milo is suggesting ‘how about eat less and exercise’, but Opus needs some miracle cure, some fad diet, and has all kinds of crazy notions. GF is a reality for some, but a fad like all of those other debunked diets that I have watched come and go through the decades …

    I definitely get the social media interaction on mileage – and I have increased mine the last couple of years, but for 2014 my goal is the same as I set for 2013 (which is much less than I did). Because if isn’t just about the number of miles, but what you do with those miles! But I also see countless bloggers whose mileage goal is ‘more than last year’ … and many bloggers with injuries from ‘the terrible toos’ … too much, too fast …

    I am not sure about the pregnancy thing – my only thought is: what is the focus, because your primary focus during pregnancy should be the optimal health of mother and child. I think all other considerations should fall behind that.
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  44. says

    I’m with you on the gluten-free thing. Why eliminate foods when you don’t need to? I was told by my gastroenterologist that I needed to reduce the amount of gluten I was eating because of gastric issues but there was no need to go gluten free. And I’ve taken him at his word. And it doesn’t hurt to get a variety of grains in my diet.
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  45. says

    I couldn’t agree more!! I’m a strong believer of moderation, especially in nutrition and exercise. I was hoping to run during my pregnancy and I tried but it just didn’t feel right, so I stopped and now just relax and take are of me and my baby. Am I afraid of gaining tons of weight and be “out of shape”? Yes! But isn’t this supposed to happen during a pregnancy?
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  46. says

    I found my way over here from Cori’s twitter…I just wrote a post about gluten free and the myths surrounding it. It drives me NUTS when people go GF when they don’t need to. Believe me, if I could eat it, I would…so I never understand WHY people choose to go GF if they don’t need to.

    That said, I’m worried an end to the fad will make it harder for me to find gluten free foods! It’s become so much easier in the past few years…

  47. says

    I like your emphasis on moderation. It’s so easy to get repetitive strain injuries when you are an athlete, I think we have to be very careful about overtraining. I have celiac in my family, and though I don’t have celiac myself, I still think it may be wiser for me to not go overboard with gluten. So I understand wanting to minimize gluten even without diagnosed celiac or gluten intolerance. I definitely tried to stay fit when pregnancy but had to modify my activities. I’m a former midwife myself. Pregnancy is a good time for being adaptable and slowing down when it’s necessary.
    Mary @ Fit and Fed recently posted..Your Brain is Making You Fat: How to Outsmart ItMy Profile

  48. says

    You hit some hot topics with this post. I cannot stand the term “fit pregnancy”. As you know, I ran during pregnancies and soon after. But the distance and intensity was significantly less. I didn’t feel the need to label every single workout “fit pregnancy” on social media. It irks me when I see it. If you feel up to running, working out, etc, more power to you, but don’t label it as such in social media.
    GF – I experimented with this over the fall. I’ve since reintroduced some gluten back into my diet. I definitely think the lack of processed food helped my digestive problems that I was having over the summer. I think too many people use the GF as a way to limit calories or cabs or lose weight. As an excuse in some ways. I have no problem with experimentation and finding what works for you, but I agree that the GF is getting out of control.
    The ultra/excessive marathoning is the worst issue you raised IMO. There are countless bloggers who I see just up and deciding to run an ultra in a few weeks and then begin logging back to back super long days. (Like 30/20). I was about 5 or 6 weeks in to training for a 24 hour race (after a few months of slowing increasing my mileage) when I found out I was pregnant with AJ. I had an actual training plan that was building my back to back long runs up to that. And I was only up to 30 for a long run and 20/20 for back to back. Seems so unsafe/unhealthy and just not smart.
    Great post and discussion here. Interesting to read some of the comment as well!
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  49. says

    Oh my goodness don’t even get me started on the gluten free thing. There’s nothing that causes me to roll my eyes more than hearing someone say they’re gluten intolerant when a doctor never actually confirmed it. I think it has a lot to do with a fear of carbs other than the “safe” ones bloggers love to eat. It literally drives me up a tree and makes me want to go eat a second plate of pasta or pizza. I’m all about the carbs-gluten free is one trend I could never get on board with unless I was badly allergic!
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  50. says

    The gluten free thing has gotten a bit out of hand. I have adopted a… “less gluten” lifestyle but it really doesn’t have to do with the GF itself as in I have found some things I love, that so happen to be GF. Quinoa has pretty much replaced all rice and pasta in my house (Yes, I still eat regular pasta once in a while). But mainly because of the other benefits of quinoa. People who Diagnose themselves with intolerance, need to see a physician. I think self diagnosis is one of my biggest pet peeves.

    As for the miles/marathons thing. I love running as much as the next person but lately the mileage talk has really gotten to me. What does it matter if you run 100 miles a week if you aren’t going to get to the start line healthy? Yes I get excited when I see my miles go up, but I am also not afraid to lower it if I am overtired, feeling pain or anything else. My health is way more important than some number.
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  51. says


    I read your headline… saw the picture and thought… MissZ is out to eradicate pancakes!?!?!?!

    I’m so glad that’s not the case.

    and as for the “more is more” thing I’m with you… backing off this year and I may never do another ultra…. and I’m okay with that.

    Michael recently posted..I ranMy Profile

  52. says

    You are a mind reader?! I’ve murmured some of these thoughts out of my own lips. Mostly about the CRAZY fit pregnancy and for me its more the crazy quick return to workouts that frighten me. I took the full 8 weeks off after both births and your body DESERVES that rest. I just wish everyone would take that time, especially on the blogs I’ve been following.

    I don’t know about gluten. I never even knew what gluten was till like 3 years ago so I doubt I’m sensitive. It’s everywhere now.

    I read a post that said that running a marathon is the new midlife crisis it made me laugh, but maybe there is some truth to it? I’ve never run a full and honestly my body can’t handle anything more than a half and I’m good with that. No crazy miles over here I promise!

    Great post love the conversations in the comments too!
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  53. says

    Yeah, add me to camp to each his own. I don’t even know how many miles I ran last year, nor do I care. As for pregnancy, I was on mandatory bedrest from weeks 16-38 so I guess I didn’t ‘outdo’ anyone there either. Hahaha!
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  54. says

    Social media, social media and social media! Damn you! I’m with you 100% on all three. I caved to a fad diet once and was told that I looked gaunt. Lovely.

    I think, as women especially, we feel like there is no other status out there other than super mom status. This goes with what we feed ourselves and our children, the miles that we log and how quickly we get back into “pre-preg” shape after having a baby. As always, very well said, Amanda. However…Wegmans does have a very lovely gluten-free section. Big variety and I’m told it’s very tasty;)
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