Yer So Negative, Kaleo

Like most of you reading, I am a human being. I have moods. Sometimes my mood is upbeat and optimistic. Other times I get discouraged by the things I see going on around me in the health and fitness world.

Lately I’ve been in the latter mood. You’ve probably noticed if you follow me on facebook. Some of you have even commented on it. A few have told me outright that it’s not ok (lol) and that I should go back to my ‘normal’ self.

This is my normal self – a self that has different moods at different times.

The fitness and health industry is really depressing right now. I don’t like it. I am ashamed to be a member of it. Stunning cases of plagiarism are swept under the rug. Fitness celebrities who lie about their qualifications aren’t held accountable. Genius marketers who use fear and pseudoscience to drive their followers to buy the products they sell are glorified on TV and in magazines. Quacks who lie and misrepresent science on TV can be called out by CONGRESS but still their show gets high ratings and advertisers flock to get air-time. Bullshit abounds, and BOY does it sell.

Professionals who base their recommendations on evidence are called ‘too pro-science’.

Too pro-science? As opposed to what? What in the everloving hell…?

I see the industry careening backward. Away from science, away from evidence, away from reality. I get emails regularly from marketers who want to affiliate with me to promote their detoxes and cleanses, their fat burning supplements, their miracle diet books, their guides to avoiding ‘toxins’. I don’t want to be associated with those things, but apparently those are the things the public wants!

The truth is, all these ridiculous things distract from the things that really do work. A balanced diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep. People get so spun out on raging against toxins and looking for evil corporations to blame their problems on that they forget the basics.

People forget that small simple changes can have a profound effect – not just on our bodies but on our world. We don’t need to rage. Raging just fuels the marketing machine (can you believe [Evil Corporation] is trying to kill you by putting [scary sounding chemical] in your food' Buy this other thing that I’m selling instead!). Raging makes us hate people who make different choices than we do. Raging distracts us from what really matters. We need to live our lives, move forward, make consistent statements with our dollars and our votes. Small statements every day. Small actions every day, like walking instead of driving, that over time compound into massive transformations in our bodies and in our lives and in our world.

Raging and extremes don’t make me happy. Seeing them everywhere in the fitness industry doesn’t make me happy. And so, I’ve been cross lately. So it goes, in life. We have moods. This is mine right now. I’m not going to apologize for it, because I’m not doing anything wrong. I’m being human.

I’m sure my mood will change eventually. Then I’ll be back to my ‘normal’ self. '? A heartfelt thanks to those of you who understand the ebbs and flows of life and stick with me through them. Ain’t being human grand?


16 thoughts on “Yer So Negative, Kaleo

  1. This is a wonderful, and true post. I too, feel the industry is sinking to new lows with pseudoscience. My degree is in Exercise Science and Wellness, and for 15 years, I have seen a lot of CRAP trends come and go. Thank you for all you do to spread sanity and moderation in ALL things. You are wonderful!

  2. Negative? There’s a difference between being negative and speaking the truth. I am so thankful I found your blog a few years ago, as it has helped me to see through a lot of bunk that is out there. Sure, I want a magic pill, food, or exercise that will make me healthier and more fit overnight. However, I know that this will only happen through consistency, proper nutrition that is not too restrictive, and moving (aka getting my ass up off the couch).

  3. Once again, another truthful post. I live by what you preach, and many have been “upset” with me because I don’t buy in to the “get skinny quick” gimmicks. By eating what I need/want, walking/biking every day, and getting sleep and lots of water, I seem to be healthy, and most importantly, happy. It’s time to stop the insanity. It’s just confusing people, and if anything, I’ve noticed many are GAINING weight with the yo-yo extreme dieting and then feeling so shameful when they can’t stick to it.

  4. And yet, despite all the bullshit out there, some of us are still managing to find our way to balance and moderation and self-care, because we have access to you and voices like yours, who are willing to point out all the inherent flaws in populist “health and fitness” despite all the negativity and outright viciousness that comes back at you. Your blog was one of the first I came across that helped me see a different path. Thanks for having the honesty to say that it’s not always sunshine and roses.

  5. I just want to thank you for being irritated with the industry and sharing it with your audience so we stay on top of the best, and most sound, information out there. I just remarked to myself tonight at a drug store that a couple of years ago I would have been purchasing a few workout magazines, but now I have all the good information I need through yourself and a few others whom I follow.

  6. Thank youuuuuuuu! Small actions happening here and I’m doing fine spending $0.00 on diet books, supplements, special drinks, bottled caveman crap and all that other lies that are being bought hand over fist by scared gullible people!
    You are a breath of fresh air in a polluted industry!

  7. You are exactly right and should not have to apologize. You are secure within yourself and it shows. You don’t need the backing of anyone about anything. You are you and I love it and YOU. You are real and I love real and the truth. If you were untruthful, I’d worry about you. Stay exactly the way you are. I rather like every mood of you.

  8. I rarely get on facebook, so I haven’t seen those posts. You have every right to be upset about crap in the fitness industry and write about it, but I do hope that you feel better soon '?

  9. I second these emotions. I recently had an experience along these lines that I won’t go in to. I’m not sure how some of these folks sleep at night, but that’s between them and their maker. I bet you sleep nicely. I know that I do. In my outbreaks of sanity, I try to remember that the most powerful messages lie in a life well-lived – not how much $ we have at the end of it. Stay the course; you are appreciated.

  10. I follow you and no other fitness people because you. use. critical. thinking. SO much of the frustration you have expressed recently has been constructive for me, not a downer. Your criticism of the anti-science (or sometimes “What is science?!”) crowd has made me feel better about ignoring some of the showy “major fitness movements” that are basically daily fodder for guilt and doubt. You’ve supported my commitment to my own philosophy: If it sounds too good, too restrictive, or too fanatical to be true, it probably is. For me, whatever is closest to my healthy, humorous, active, nature-crazy Norwegian cousins’ lifestyle usually feels like the best thing for me, no matter how many people passionately tell me I’m misguided and should follow their thang. Others will have different approach than me and that’s great! When in doubt, improvise and soldier on with Health as the goal. Thank you, and keep following the diverse moods as your honest heart and head tell you to!!

  11. You’re not negative, you’re telling it like it is! Unfortunately, sleep, healthy eating, and exercise doesn’t make pharmaceutical companies any money – until then (or until there’s a consumer uprising) they will continue to sell their crappy raspberry ketones and green coffee bean extract…

    I’m hoping for a consumer uprising!

    • Don’t you mean “natural products” companies? Pharmaceutical companies don’t bother with that stuff, and have a higher bar of safety and evidence to cross to be able to sell anything.

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