Sarah’s Story

Circuit style workouts may be my favorite. They’re challenging, super-sweaty and the combination of strength, plyometric and cardio exercises holds my interest and makes the workout fly by.

Today Ryan and I began our workouts with 20 minutes on the elliptical before I went on to tackle this circuit workout:







Reverse flies






Upright rows




Lunges (each leg)


Chest press




Bicep curls


Tricep extensions



60 sec.

Plank hold

I repeated the circuit workout again, substituting 35 seconds of jump rope for the burpees. I completed the circuit again after that for a total of three rounds, only I completely eliminated the burpees and jump roping to focus solely on the strength exercises.

Great workout!

In case you’re looking for additional super sweaty circuit workouts, here are some of my favorites:


Ryan and I made a pit stop at the grocery store on the way home to pick up some jelly because we were both missing the added sweetness on our morning egg sandwiches.

egg cheese jelly sandwich 001

The gooey yolk from the dippy egg added an extra punch of flavor.

egg cheese jelly sandwich 004

egg cheese jelly sandwich 003

Moving right along to the nitty gritty of this post!

An Eye Opening Email

You may remember a post I wrote last week on PBF about a study that was conducted that basically concluded that men prefer brunettes and curvy bodies.

I shared the study and asked you guys to weigh in… to share whether you thought the study was valid, ridiculous or if you were angry that a study like this even existed.

The comments were very interesting and many different opinions were shared and a discussion began in the comments section.

The different viewpoints were mostly respectful… though there were a few that were a little pointed about the bodies of “skinny” women. The women who are naturally thin.

Later that evening, I received an email from a blog reader, Sarah, saying that she was really hurt by some of the comments and I felt absolutely awful. Sarah and I emailed back and forth a few times, discussing her feelings. Her email to me was honestly eye opening.

Knowing how upset she was and how upset other naturally thin women may have been by that post and Sarah’s email really made me sit back and think.

As a “curvier” girl (okay, so I only have curves in my butt – not the boobs), I will admit that I am frequently envious of body types like Sarah’s and other naturally lean women. I think lean, petite bodies are beautiful. I know this sounds awful, but I think that maybe because the body types of these women are looked upon as “enviable” by SO many women, we don’t think these women have insecurities about being thin or small… which is TOTALLY wrong.

I thank Sarah for shedding light on the fact that every woman – no matter WHAT shape or size – can feel insecure at times.

Bottom line: We’re all different, we’re all beautiful and there’s no reason to say degrading things about ANYONE’S shape.

I asked Sarah to share more about her experience as a naturally thin woman to shed some light on the comments and judgments that these women receive regularly. I found her story interesting and thought provoking and thought you guys might as well!

Sarah’s Story

Hello PBF Readers!

My name is Sarah and I’ve been reading Julie’s blog for a while now.  I read whenever I can because I think her blog is a positive outlet for “healthy” discussions about “healthy” things, and because her easy crockpot chicken recipe changed my life (or at least my week day cooking strategies). Which is why I was surprised to leave feeling offended and turned-off after reading a post the other day. The post I am referring to is here.

It wasn’t the post itself that I found offensive, but some of the comments in the discussion. More specifically, some of these comments referred to thin women as scrawny, boyish, and not sexy and suggested that they “go eat a hamburger.”

Let me preface this by saying that I am skinny. I am a size 00, I still wear jeans that I’ve had since high school, and I fly away when the wind blows hard.  Kidding…kind of. In reality, I am a healthy young woman who strives to live a balanced lifestyle. I lift weights 3-4x per week, do a moderate amount of cardio, and balance my carnivorous appetite with fruits and veggies every day. But my whole life, I’ve been made fun of because of my weight. 

haters be hatin'

The teasing started at a young age, innocently enough with my family. My aunt would poke at my ribs, and my grandpa would ask me if I had to dance around in the shower to get wet. I would laugh it off, but deep down, it always bothered me. The teasing got malicious, however, when I got to middle school.  Kids at school, both boys and girls, were so cruel to me, making fun of me to my face about my skinny legs, my small chest, and everything else about my body. I remember one boy actually made up a song about me that he called the anorexia song, and he would sing it when I walked into the classroom.  It was very hard on me, and I would often cry myself to sleep at night.  Although most of the teasing subsided once I got to high school, this treatment caused some deep self-esteem issues that took me many years to overcome. 

To this day, I still get comments, mostly from my family, like “you’re so skinny” or “you need to eat more.” The fact is, I often eat more that my 6 foot, four inch 220 pound fiancé! The most frustrating part is that I know I am perfectly healthy, but I feel the need to constantly defend myself. As I mentioned in my original comment, the problem lies in that there is a negative stigma attached to insulting a woman about being overweight, but people think it’s socially acceptable to insult skinny women about their bodies. And to be honest, I really don’t understand why. I would never, in a million years, ever, insult a woman about being overweight. So why do people feel that it’s OK to tell me my booty is small or give me a dirty look when I turn down a piece of cake?  Don’t tell me to go eat a hamburger; I’ll eat whatever I darn well please, thank you very much!


  1. says

    Preach it Sarah! Know you’re not alone. There are so many different forms of beauty and tons of judgmental people who no matter what will try and bring you down. As long as you’re proud of who you are is all that matters.

    Like Pink said, “You’re F$ck#n% PERFECT!” :)))))


  2. Hannah says

    I nearly cried reading this post! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU to Sarah & Julie for sharing this story. I grew up being verrry skinny and I always got called a “twig” or “bean pole.” Of course, I secretly loved it but it also messed me up a little bit. For example, I HATE HATE HATE the saying that “real women have curves.” Who came up with that? I want to be considered womanly too!

    When I got to college & gained 10 pounds it made me look much more average-sized & it freaked me out to not be ‘skinny’ for the first time in my life. I’m 20 now and I still have insecurities about looking boyish because I feel so feminine on the inside, but these A-cups just aren’t foolin anyone 😉


  3. Lorin says

    This post is definitely true! There are so many times when I’m eating a salad or eating healthy and people always so, “Oh come on, you are skinny, eat more.” It’s like, okay, you didn’t see what I’ve been eating all day, maybe I had a lot of grains earlier in the day and want to balance with veggies. It’s annoying when people have to comment on how people eat, either naturally thin or heavier. It’s really not anyone’s buisness to put down what others are eating. Especially in front of a bunch of people at a dining table or parties, it’s just rude. I wouldn’t say, well why are you eating a plate full of cookies. I’m not saying that’s bad, I love cookies! I just know how to balance it and I guess people want you to join in their indulgences.


  4. says

    What a great post! Thank you Sarah for sharing your story! I’ve always been envous of some women and i suppose i always will, no matter my size! I’ve always compared myself to other people in lots of areas- not just weight, and body image! The way we look is such an immensely personal thing. Women can be so judgemental regarding each other’s bodies and sizes, it’s ridiculous. I have apprehension that being overweight i’m always being looked at, and it may be happening or it may just be me being self-conscious.

    We need to love each other, respect one other, and let each person be who they are no matter what!


  5. says

    Good points, Sarah. I do find that many women judge thin AND overweight women, and while I think society is biased against the overweight, women are far more vocal in criticism to a thin woman. For a great example any day of the week, read the comments on! Women constantly criticize celebrities and models for being too thin, often very harshly, yet when a plus-sized reader or model is featured commenters do not complain about her weight. Instead they congratulate Glamour for picturing a “real” women. Real women come in many shapes and sizes! And as an artist, I find beauty in all men and women. We are each uniquely beautiful. I hope that someday society moves beyond viewing weight as an appearance issue, and can instead address only the health aspects of the topic.


  6. says

    I am just catching up in blogland and read this post and tears almost came to my eyes! LOVE THIS POST!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can SO relate to Sarah’s story!!!!! I’ve been teased ever since I was little about being thin. I have always been known as a “skinny mini” amongst my family/friends… and although my family get’s it (because, well, they’re just like me!) I grew up hearing “gosh, how do you stay so thin?” or “I hate how it’s so easy for you to stay so skinny.” It definitely led to self-confidence issues and me feeling judged by others, and it wasn’t until I picked up running and weight training that I feel like i’ve been able to view myself as a “strong” person… just because I’ve always grown up hearing how skinny/thin I was. In my heart, I’ve always known I am strong, though. Heck, in my HS gym class, I won the pullup contest by about 30 seconds and every girl was AMAZED that I could hold myself up on the bar longer than them… and even longer than some of the guys who couldn’t do pullups! Sure, I may be “slim”, but I sure am strong!! And now that I’ve been putting on even *more* muscle, I’m even stronger! I seriously have the most confidence now than I ever did growing up. Although, I’m still majorily self-conscoious about my collar bones. I think they’ll always be pokey, though.. as my mom/aunt/cousins are the exact same way. There is no reason for me to ashamed of something that is such a part of my family. It’s makes us unique, and it gives us something to bond over, lol!!!


  7. Jacquelyn says

    I love your blog and positivity towards a healthy lifestyle 🙂 I’m so glad Sarah’s story was featured. I can relate to both sides of the story when it comes to being treated badly for being overweight or thin. I have recently lost 80 pounds. I used to be considered in the ‘obese’ category and transformed into a different person through a healthy, balanced diet and regular exercise. I used to be the person that was picked on for being overweight, and the only thing worse than that has been the way I have been treated since losing the weight. People make comments like “you need to eat something” or “you need to put bricks in your pockets so you don’t blow away” and find it easy to make comments because I’m thin. Telling thin people to put some weight on is like telling someone that is overweight that they need to lose some weight (which, if you were told to lose weight, wouldn’t you be offended?). I’m still self conscious now, actually probably moreso than when I was overweight. Sarah’s story really got the point across and I could not agree with her viewpoints more. Thanks!


  8. says

    Oh my goodness thank you for saying this. I am in the same boat as you (I am very thin and I am also very petite at 5’1″), and I’ve had people tell me to eat more or that I need to gain weight, blah blah blah. Well, I eat quantities that are more that sufficient (plus I certainly indulge in the typical “no no” foods like pasta and bread), and my body has naturally maintained the same weight for so many years now that I know it’s where it wants to be. I am happy and healthy and certainly not deprived, so I don’t give a hoot what others say!


  9. Lee @ in the pink of condition says

    I can totally agree with Sarah. I am also very petite, a size 00, and I have to get all of my clothes tailored. I frequently get comments about my weight from my family and have gotten a lot of comments from my peers, people saying that i’m “anorexic” or that I have body issues, when in fact I have always been this way. It makes me sad when people comment on my looks or my weight, because I don’t do that to anyone else. I’m glad Sarah was able to point out this problem.


  10. R says

    “As a “curvier” girl (okay, so I only have curves in my butt – not the boobs), I will admit that I am frequently envious of body types like Sarah’s and other naturally lean women. I think lean, petite bodies are beautiful.”

    No offence, but I find the fact that you are particularly pointing out thin bodies as beautiful is just encouraging the whole hype of having to be thin and that being thin is ideal.


  11. says

    I just want to let you know I tried your workout you suggested in this post yesterday and I loved it! I ran 15 minutes, did the eliptical 15 minutes, then ended my workout with 2 sets of your suggested exercises from the post! It was great and I was super sweaty. I also did my workout while listening the the new “Workout” genre station on Pandora! Score!


  12. Cortney says

    The reason (and I’m not saying I agree with it) it is more socially acceptable to say to someone, “you’re so skinny”, is because generally, it is said out of jealousy. I know several naturally thin people who “claim” they don’t watch what they eat or exercise. This is soooo frustrating to me, because I am one of the many women who really have to watch what I eat and exercise almost everyday just to maintain my weight. Which is much higher than the “naturally thin” people. In our society, it is feminine for women to not weigh much. So, even though men say they like curves, women who struggle with losing/maintaining their weight, are going to be jealous of those thin people who don’t have to work at it. The reason people don’t say “you’re so fat”, is because that’s not what anyone longs for. So many women strive to be thin, and when it comes naturally to other women, the words sometimes just come out, out of jealousy. Everyone has insecurities, and those naturally thin people really shouldn’t be victims of others’ desire to be thin. But, with our society obsessing that thin=beautiful, be it in print, on TV, etc., I doubt it will stop happening any time soon.


  13. Vicki says

    Reading through all these comments, it’s very obvious that no matter what your size, everyone has been picked on or felt self-conscious about their bodies. We could go on all day about whether skinny or fat people have it worse…the fact is, we all need to be secure with what we have been blessed with and love ourselves. Work hard, eat healthy and be proud! Even the person with a “perfect” body gets picked on for a big nose, squeaky voice, frizzy hair, whatever! So don’t waste time wishing you were smaller or bigger… haters will just find something else to pick on! Live with confidence ladies!


  14. Daniel says

    I did this circuit workout 3x this morning and felt amazing afterwards. I was wearing a heartrate monitor and burned over 700 calories in 45 minutes. Thanks for sharing and I really enjoy reading your blog 🙂


  15. Molly P. says

    I’m so late to the game commenting on this post! But I was really moved by Sarah’s story and by you, Julie, providing her a place on your blog to tell it.

    Growing up, I was very, very thin. I had an enormous appetite but just happened to be blessed with a speedy metabolism. I never thought much about my weight, or in comparions to others, until people started making comments. They were never particularly ruthless or malicious, but I found myself getting offended simply by comments like, “Eat something!” or “Oh my God, you’re so skinny.” It grew increasingly uncomfortable when people brought up anorexica . Again, I was never point-blank asked, but it was joked about. I never experienced anything to the degree that Sarah describes, and I’m so sorry she had to endure all of that 🙁

    Women, for whatever reason, are very judgemental towards each other. We can be each other’s worst enemies when it comes to body image. We make fun of women for their size, their clothes/make up, and all I can ask is, why?

    Maybe it’s cliched, but a woman’s size is not what makes her beautiful or ugly. It is her personality, how she treats others etc. No one has any right to talk about or comment on someone else’s apperance for any reason.


  16. says

    I know this is an old post but I just wanted to say thank you for posting it. I am the same size as Sarah and feel the same way. It gets old listening to people questions your eating habits. It is possible to have a fast metabolism and remain thin while eating decent meals.
    Thank you very much for sharing her story.



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