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Why I Created the Burn in 30 Program

We’re two days into our 30 day Burn in 30 program and as I reflect on the last 6 weeks of creating this program, there was one thing that I really wanted to make sure my participants know. The meaning behind Burn in 30 is not to lose weight for the new year. It’s not to punish ourselves for holiday eating. It’s not to kickstart our metabolisms and start the year off right.

The reason I wanted to create a program that was 30 days long that included daily workouts, healthy eating tips, promotes mindfulness and self-care is because we spend so much time using exercise to punish ourselves. We diet and tell ourselves that certain foods are bad. We can’t have pizza. It’s bad. Carbs? No way. I wanted a program that challenged people to choose to get up and workout for themselves, to find new recipes for food that they like and for people to create a community of support for a healthier lifestyle.

I love listening to podcasts and one of my current favorites is Food Psych by Christy Harrison, author of the Anti-Diet. Episode #51 is about how to stop dieting and start gaining body acceptance. Christy is an advocate and proponent of intuitive eating and in this episode, she hosts Kelsey Miller, author of ‘Big Girl: How I gave up dieting and got a life’ to discuss her book and outlook on dieting and exercise. This specific episode inspired me to create something for our Fly members that promoted healthy habits rather than beating ourselves up just to try to nail the latest and greatest trick!

One of the major aspects that Christy and Kelsey talk about in this podcast is that it is easier to join in the diet culture than it is to reject it. It is the cultural norm to be on a diet and to cut out perceived bad foods. It’s ingrained in us from little on. Our culture promotes that thin is healthy and that you must be thin and well-toned to prove that you work out and are in good shape. Pick up any fitness magazine and you’ll see what is culturally accepted as an athletic body. Our culture also promotes that exercise is punishment for eating poorly or being sedentary. Most of us have desk jobs. We are sedentary during the day to make a living. Exercise should not be punishment for working our jobs.

Even in our own industry, we see men and women with a body type that we envy or that we think is ideal to do pole or other aerial apparatuses. We watch the pros do fantastic tricks without rolls or jiggles and then we tell ourselves we can’t try a new trick, or we can’t perform because we don’t look like the pro or because we’re too heavy, our arms are weak, things move in places we don’t want them to. If I had a dollar for every time someone told me they couldn’t do aerial because they were too fat, too old, not strong, etc., I would be incredibly wealthy. My favorite comment that I hear repeatedly is ‘I need to lose a little weight first and then I’ll come to one of your pole classes.’

I wanted people to have a community that got up in the mornings and worked out together because we chose to. Not because we have to but because we wanted to give ourselves a little self-care right away in the day. I’d like to challenge not just my crew participating in the Burn program but, all our Fly team to reject the cultural norm that we must diet, exercise to achieve a specific body shape and compare ourselves to the aerialists that do nothing but aerial for a living. Forget what you think an aerial body looks like or what an athletic body is supposed to be. Work out for you to boost your strength but most importantly, to improve your mental health and take care of yourself!

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