Category Archives: General

Body Acceptance, obesity, overweight, fitness, and risk to health

Body acceptance, including of any and all when it comes to race, culture, age, size and shape, has been much in the news and social media commentary during the past few years. Health and fitness have replaced the word “diet”. Today  I saw that Helen Mirren is featured on the  Sept. magazine cover of  Allure — which magazine has apparently eschewed forevermore the word “anti-aging.”

I’ve always supported the notion that curvy women look better in corsets and “take to” them easier than do slender folks. ROMANTASY features a full-figure gallery to encourage women of all sizes and shape to try a corset for any of a number of purposes. One of our clients pictured on that page had a bosom measurement of 54″ and a waistline measurement of up to 60″ is not all that abnormal over our 27 years in this corset business.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures of the vast majority of my typical corset clients over the years. Marcia Venema (holding flowers), is one of our most loving supporters of all things corset and of my modest small business venture, with an amazing 16″ natural hip spring (waist vs hips). (Black and white, and magenta corset by Sue Nice, former team member; blue and brown corsets by Sheri; ).

In general, I agree with the body acceptance trend, but honestly, I have always had a vaguely discomfiting feeling that I have not been able to name, when it comes to that term, in conjunction wtih how to think about large waist sizes and weight.

Most of us know about Dr. Oz and many others in the medical fields who advise that a woman’s waist should not exceed 35″ and a man’s 40″, in order to minimize many health risks as we age. Now I’ve read that for us women, it might be 31″ for the waistline goal! (see below)

To me, the bottom line is that we each have to judge our own body size and shape as to whether we feel good and safe in them, healthy, and out of pain. But I continue to wonder if obesity is ever a good thing to support in the name of body acceptance?

As for Mirren as Allure’s Sept. Cover Woman (let’s dump forever the term “girl” as Mirren is surely not that!), one can only muse, “why now, and why not eons ago?” Betty Friedan mused along with me in 2006, but not eons ago, when she published a book I recommend to all, The Fountain of Age. Aging is not a trip to the garbage heap according to Friedan. But there’s a lot more research to be done with attention to men and women over 70, to fill in a huge gap in knowledge as Friedan points out.

And of course, there is a lot more research to be done on weight, waist size, hunger, eating habits, nutrition, and related health matters.

Lately The European Heart Journal reported on a new study from London designed to find a correlation between people who were fat but fit, and heart disease. 521.000 Europeans from 10 countries participated and were monitored for 15 years. It’s worth a read if like me, you are struggling with the concept of body image and how that relates to overall health and health risks.

The researchers noted individuals as being “unhealthy” if they were found to have at least three harmful metabolic markers such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar levels, and a larger waist size (37″ for men and 31″ for women). Meanwhile, those with a body mass index (BMI) of over 30 were considered “obese,” while participants with a BMI of 25-30 were viewed as overweight. Anyone with a BMI of 18.5-25 was listed as normal.

While participants who made the “unhealthy” list were more than twice as likely to suffer from coronary heart disease regardless of weight, people considered “healthy” under the formula who were overweight still had a 26 percent greater risk of battling the condition. Obese “healthy” participants were found to have a 28 percent increase risk.

More than 10,000 people served as a control group for the study and factors such as exercise level, smoking history, and socio-economic status were taken into account for the research.

The authors believe that “the excess weight itself may not be increasing the risk of heart disease directly, but rather indirectly through mechanisms such as increased blood pressure and high glucose.” They agree that stronger awareness and prevention measures, along with treatment of obesity, be offered by doctors so that those who “fat, but fit” don’t lose sight of losing weight.

“I think there is no longer this concept of healthy obese,” says Dr. Ioanna Tzoulaki, from Imperial’s School of Public Health. If anything, our study shows that people with excess weight who might be classed as ‘healthy’ haven’t yet developed an unhealthy metabolic profile. That comes later in the timeline, then they have an event, such as a heart attack.”

I’ll let that be the last word for now, but always welcome your thoughts on the matter!

Advertisements

4 Comments

Filed under General, General Waist Training Information, Hot Topics on Health

Don’t Let One Uninformed or Prejudiced Corset Comment go Unrefuted

I’ve always been one to speak up about policies and procedures that make no sense, or about something that I feel will improve my family, community or personal life. That also includes corsets.

Some who first considering wearing a corset, equate them with being from the fringe or the fetish world. Some see only the sexual aspect of corseting, not realizing that corsets are worn for a countless number of distinct, beneficial reasons (See corset enthusiast/corset maker Lucy William’s book, Solaced, available on amazon.com). Some fear that being identified with corsets by letter writing, or by wearing the corset as an outer fashion garment, or even by stealthing and being outed in some way, will bring opprobrium down on their head. They don’t see sufficient benefit of posting public comments or writing letters to editors or to authors of articles to correct wrong statements about corsets, to provide personal examples of positive benefits, or to make comments on style, design, and construction. I wonder how truly harmful those comments would be, really, or even if they would hear any at all? Most folks are into their own things and go about their business with little regard for others who might be tangential.

Perhaps we succumb to imagined trauma when there is none these days? Corsets are worn visibly and are ubiquitous outside of a fetish content. With nearly 400 international corset makers showing their wares on the web and rushing out gorgeous custom creations to hundreds if not thousands of clients all over the world?

A  rather new BFF of mine is subject to the connection of wearing corsets with both delight, and with shame. Recently she picked up a stunning, comfy and well fitting new overbust corset by Sheri (pictured here with lavendar paisley corset fitting properly; note there is no “toothpaste” protruding underneathe her arms; nor in the back which is not pictured) who is now our preferred ROMANTASY CORSETIERE (send us email for a direct referral to work with Sheri on your design and style needs).

My friend doesn’t feel comfortable enough to let her 40-year old daughter know that she is wearing a corset as a foundation garment, yet her daughter commented on her good posture and lovely bosom supported properly by an overbust style.  In addition, she has gotten many favorable comments even tho viewers don’t know she is wearing a corset, many along the lines of “Wow–you look great; that inspires me to start losing some weight too!”

Her daughter questioned the height of her mom’s bosom in the corset. Of course the corset needs some seasoning to fit better over time, and it needs to be pulled a bit down on my friend’s body (with the lean-pull technique).

As another example, the client, not my new friend, pictured here is wearing a red Chinese polysilk underbust style corset too high on her torso, allowing her lower stomach to protrude outward. She pulled the corset down about one inch and lo! it fit perfectly!

My BFF needs to remember that a corset tends to rise when sitting for a while, and over a day of wearing. Wearing a corset takes some attention and some tinkering with height and lacing down; the best fit requires some adjustment during the day until the corset settles on the body. Of course, we’re so used to seeing ourselves slump under loose clothing styles, that just seeing better posture looking back in the mirror can be stunning, even shocking, and take some getting used to. Most of all, my newly-corseting friend needs to heed my advice to delay any negative — or positive ultimate conclusion if corsets are for her or not.

Aside from potential negative or ill-informed comments that need to be corrected when they occur in the media, often corsets in the news are simply left out in any discussion about health or body size or shape, or about fat, obesity, and diet challenges.

That’s true of one New York Times Magazine’s article from this past Sunday (see below). It’s as if corsets and corset waist training just don’t exist, much like society has treated women as not existing in  conversations conducted and dominated by men in the boardroom and conference hall. Women have to push their way in and speak up to be heard; it takes courage. Courage is more important than courtesy, as Senator Kamala Harris believes (she’s publishing a button with that saying, and I’m waiting for mine to wear proudly).

I urge you to consider pushing your way into any misguided corset conversation, or where your informed comment may be relevant, so that these wonderful garments and their many benefits become more broadly available in the consciousness of anyone who wants to improve their posture and/or lose weight or waistline inches. It’s one more option of self-improvement that has nothing to do with dieting and everything to do with feeling good, fashionable, feminine, comfy, and au courant!! We need every voice to speak up to address “The Corset Question” and diminish it’s ludicrousness and invented foundational belief that corsets cause pain.

On another point, one person reminded me to confront statements like I used to make, that modern day corsetry well fit and custom, is a lot more comfy than Victorian corsets were. But that’s simply not true — or women would have been complaining and not wearing them a long time ago!  Any custom corset properly fit, then slowly seasoned and worn properly on the torso and with respect to the body’s messages about comfort and health, can be beneficial, and almost never detrimental to health and well being if common sense is applied in the wearing.

If you want to know how to safely and sanely waist train, check out what a doctor, nutritionist, and corsetmaker say about my new “how to waist train” primer book (just $14.95 online). It can help ease your way into comfy waist training, and avoid most pesky problems that might occur for some.

###

Letter to the Editor, New York Times 8/8/17

Dear Editor:

I feel for Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s angst about weight  (“Losing It”, NYT Magazine 8/6/17). However, the public obsession pro or con fat (or whatever PC term we are supposed to use now), is about sexism at base. Women at the other end of the weight spectrum get trashed, too. Society thinks it’s just fine to lob cruel public comments at thin and fat women. What’s sad is that Taffy has not found anything to help but the old saws of superfoods, bariatric surgery, and the like. She could think entirely out of the box, and try corset waist training. It’s a fashionable and fun approach that’s completely unrelated to dieting. Simply don a beautifully crafted custom corset to immediately improve posture plus comfortably nip inches off any persons’s waistline. Soon looking better translates into feeling better, as do the positive public comments you’ll receive. Meanwhile the corset mandates portion control: overeat and the resulting discomfort reminds you to resist the next time you eat. I’ve coached students in the initial three-month process for 25 years. Wearing a corset gives them time for stomachs to become less elastic, and encourages the development of new, beneficial nutrition, food, and exercise choices. It shrinks the waistline in an amazingly short time, and you can lose weight if you want to. Better yet, like wearing panties or a bra, wearing a comfy corset occasionally becomes second nature to a woman so that we continue to reap the lifelong rewards of the initial success that every single student I’ve coached has experienced. ###

2 Comments

Filed under Custom Corsets Suitable for Waist Training, General, General Waist Training Information

Good posture and corsets–initial thoughts on what the Alexander Technique might add to your comfort during waist training

I believe that the most immediate, and perhaps most beneficial, result of wearing corsets and corset waist training, is improved posture. So is the result of the Alexander Technique–the topic of today’s blog.

It is only after some months of dedicated corset wearing, coupled with corset-friendly nutrition practices and waist-targeted exercises, that temporary figure improvement can be converted into permanent figure improvement — if you then don’t pig out on Krispy Kreme donuts and revert to dubious nutritional practices. After all, we have to use common sense when it comes to corseting, as in  all other matters of life!

Recently I’ve started learning about and pursuing lessons in the Alexander Technique (“AT”). My immediate motivation relates to a lingering whiplash cervical injury given to me by a particularly incompetent Chinese wife of my Chinese acupunturist, sad to say. In a moment of pain and depression from a lingering low back muscle spasm, last November I allowed her to manipulate my spine and neck before acupuncture– and three days later, just as with a car accident, the neck injury appeared. I should have known better, but I was too vulnerable. I’m still seeking relief and recovery, which is coming all too slowly for my taste.

Raven, my great friend and web mistress, only a few weeks ago found a video on the Alexander Technique, and “felt” it was for me. I’ve considered cold laser threatment, Feldenkrais, and other. I’ve pursued competent physical therapy, and started swimming three times a week at my warm rehab pool (such a blessing to have the Pomeroy Center in San Francisco!). I’m still not 100% and my neck causes me from mild to serious pain or discomfort every day.

When I viewed the video on the AT that Raven sent a link to, and a few others on the technique, I was gobsmacked. Something seemed to resonate with me about AT theory and practice. I particularly loved it when a local San Francisco AT therapist, in describing the technique and practice, called it: “the thinking person’s physical therapy.”

Like the AT, corset waist training, to be both effective and safe, requires advance thinking and understanding of the whys and hows of what you are doing. That’s why I wrote my initial (600 page equivalent) book in 2003 Corset Waist Training, and updated it substantially with new information, in my Primer book from 2016 (300 pages). But in some ways, the corset and corset waist training, does not go far enough — and there’s where the AT comes in.

The corset, much akin to how a physical therapist or gym trainer works, changes the form of the body, but there’s not too much advance thinking involved, and usually, not much discussion or study from those who jump right in. Sure, there is the “right form” advisable for physical exercises so that we don’t injure ourselves inadvertently. I talk a lot about that in my exercise chapter from the new 2016 corset waist-training book. Starting with the “TVA” squeeze or “set” of that important waistline muscle, minimized injury risks in many exercises. My own wonderful Kaiser PT Matt Sheehy, made sure to teach me the “right” form for my back rehab exercises, however those sessions were only 30 min. long (curse the state of the US health care system) and there was limited time to be sure I knew what I was doing. There was almost never the time to find out “why” I was being asked to do what. Had there been more discussion, then I could have gone off and reflected deeply about those reasons. For me, that’s the way I cement new learning into my body, mind and soul, otherwise it is too easy to just slip away outside of my PT’s office.

If you wear corsets to protect your back from further or new injury, to improve your posture and fit of clothing, and/or to waist train, you might want to look into the Alexander Technique which I believe can be practiced effectively and beneficially in tandem with corseting. Check out this post based on the the AT, and an important mid-page photo showing improper and proper sitting posture.

“Posture isn’t just physical.  It’s a psychophysical (mind/body) state that we get into in response to our environment, technology, emotions, furniture, and people with whom we interact.  It’s easy to get stuck in these habits and then metaphorically spin in circles trying to get out of them.   We can make things worse by trying to fix them in away that intensifies the exact habits that we are trying to change (i.e. The lifting the chest and pulling the shoulders back phenomenon.)”

I was gobsmacked to learn from my talented, amazing local AT therapist. Elyse Shafarman, that unless we think about posture and take ameliorative steps to re-learn correct, non-stressful body habits, we merely take on and reflect, the poor posture of others. “We are social animals,” Elyse says, and we unconsciously pick up on not only the energy and spirit of others–but also how they look and move throughout their day.

I was also gobsmacked to learn form Elyse, that good posture does not mean throwing our shoulders and head up and back! It’s almost the opposite in the AT: the top of the head is “thought” to rise up a wee bit, the chin slightly (ever so slightly) down and the head almost “bobbles” easily on the neck, gently stretching out the cervical spine and elevating the entire spine. At the same time, the shoulder blades are “thought” to expand outward, and I have to learn not to squeeze my scapula, AKA “chicken wings”, backward.

But of course, there’s more — much more to AT, and for me to learn. After all, two lessons does not an AT expert make!

As I’ve been practicing these techniques and new thoughts for the past two weeks during my twice-daily walks, I’ve noticed that as soon as I think of spreading out or widening my shoulder blades, I always notice that my shoulders have automatically hunched up! While my cincher or corset worn on some days, tends to keep my midriff erect and protected, it does nothing to protect or alleviate discomfort in my shoulders and neck.

Even my high-backed corset (there are two or mine pictured, first the  white corset mesh with green and blue patterned bone casings, and above, the hot pink denim corset; the green high-backed corsets is modeled by corsetiere Sue Nice’s sister), at 10″ and 9″ from waist up to top in the back, can only do so much to alleviate neck discomfort and improve posture. Lingerie-style support bodices that promise to hold back the shoulders, also seem to “cut” under my armpits in the most uncomfy of ways.

I’ll post more on what I learn and observe over the coming weeks. If you have studied the AT, I’d love to hear from you as to what you noted, and the results of your practice.

Leave a comment

Filed under General, General Waist Training Information, Hot Topics on Health

What if you don’t like corsets? (Or will I like them?)

Ms. Kiska, my present waist training student who is just about to conclude her three-month experiment and coaching in figure shaping, just wrote: “Unfortunately my corset feels like more of a nuisance than not.”

This is after almost 12 weeks of daily wearing her custom training corset, less one day per week, and after building up slowly in hours and tightness in lacing down so the process is comfy in general. She chose a well-fitting and extremely comfy training corset by Sheri, who patterns out over the rib cage more than others might, in order to allow for easier breathing and flexibility of movement. That’s why we recommend Sheri for waist training students who will have to work up to long hours of wear, and also for a second corset when you have dropped some fat and inches off your torso and waist to leave mainly muscle, and need to go more slowly and make sure it is comfy when you lace down to the next level. Sheri’s corsets are perfect for either person!

You’ll see Ms. K. in her underbust cotton corset by Sheri, pictured before she began waist training, so this corset doesn’t fit “the best”. That’s because she had to lace loosely and wear it loosely to begin training, to enhance her own comfort and let the corset gradually ‘breathe’ and accustom itself to her torso in return. In that manner you minimize the risk that you might damage your corset, altho with Sheri’s sturdy creations that is highly unlikely to begin with.

Of course to me, a 100 percent corset enthusiast, Ms. K’s message initially made me feel a bit sad. I had kept hope that over three months as she seasoned her new corset and got used to longer hours wearing it six days a week, it would become more comfortable and she would take a shine to it as well as to her shrinking waistline and improved posture.

Regarding the last two items, a shrinking waistline and improved posture, she did take a shine! But regarding the actual corset, and corset wear, she clearly did not.

Still, Ms. K. intends after formal training to keep up better nutrition choices she has learned, and some new exercises that target her waistline muscles to keep them toned and under control, but plans only occasionally to wear her training corset. We’ll soon share her simple but sound Maintenance Plan and final training results in the next blog.

As I thought about her reactions to a corset, I reflected on the incredible range of reasons that anyone might choose to wear a corset. I thought back on thousands and thousands of corsets clients I’ve served over my 27 years in the corset education and purveying/designing business. I also reflected on the 100 stories of why and how people who wrote to Lucy Williams, the young corset enthusiast from Canada, wore their corsets. Check out Lucy’s fascinating book collecting these stories, “Solaced,” available for Kindle on amazon.

If I have learned one thing in my 27 years focusing on this magical garment, it is that every individual reacts differently to wearing corsets (and to waist training). It is simply impossible to know how a specific person  will “take” to wearing a corset, and how one will find a corset useful in one’s life, if they take to corsets at all. Not everyone loves the garment!

Yesterday I tried corsets and corset muslins on my BFF Letha, pictured here wearing a muslin  of an overbust Victorian corset underneath her black outfit. She has decided she wants an overbust foundation corset to improve her posture and figure, plus  improve the fit of her clothing as she, like me, ages gracefully into her 70s. Letha loved the look and feel!

Within a few try-ons of a corset (her first ever!) and maybe 10 total minutes, she was strutting around the living room admiring herself in the mirror, laced down 5.5″ from her natural waist measurement. Yup. In about ten minutes! It stunned us both.

Obviously Letha is the type of client who is relatively plastic (“squishy”) in her midriff and can easily lace down. More importantly, she has no aversion to a relatively new feeling for her of wearing a body-fitting, closely structured garment on her torso. That was a bit surprising to me because her typical way of dressing is to wear flowing, artistic clothing.

Letha reminds me a bit of “Frankie” in the wonderful tv series “Frankie and Grace” if you have seen it? She’s experimental, adventurous, and cheerful, just the kind of personality I like and resonate with. I think she expected to like corsets–and she did! (If you haven’t seen the show, run, don’t walk, to rent the series. It’s a pure hoot, with wonderful actors Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda and a terrifically funny and heartwarming story line to boot).

So how will you know if you will ‘take’ to corsets? You won’t know for sure if you have never worn them or tried them on. But if you tend to like tight belts, panty hose, boned shapewear, fitted clothing like princess seams and well-fitted waistlines in pants and dresses, and tight jeans, you will likely take to corsets and to waist training as well. But then this guideline doesn’t explain Letha’s positive reaction, since she had never tried on a formal corset!

So keep your mind open to corsets, expect to like them, and if you can do so, try a fit sample corset on and lace it snugly (but not quickly!) to see if you like the feeling.

If you don’t have access to a try-on corset, then get a wide belt and belt down snugly or tightly. Try to keep the corset or belt on for more than five minutes! The more minutes you can wear a structured garment, the better you will be able to tell how you will react to the real thing. Stand up, sit down, walk around and if you can, eat a light meal to see how your stomach will feel while corseted.

Hopefully the real thing you finally choose, will be a well-fitting custom corset made especially for you, and not a dubiously-fitting readymade or over-the-counter OTC corset. You usually  can’t go wrong with custom, whereas you can easily go wrong with an uncomfy, non-individually fitted OTC choice.

Leave a comment

Filed under Custom Corsets Suitable for Waist Training, General, General Waist Training Information

Sugar Addendum

My partner and I have been in the process of downsizing and simplifying our life, which is a very complex, detailed and difficult process indeed! I do hope “simple” and easy is at the end.

Yesterday he handed me a collection of some small, very old honey packets called “Honey Sauce” we got some time ago from Col. Sanders Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food restaurant. Accustomed as I am these days–but not when we collected these–of reading labels, here is what I learned about the contents of each 2″ x 1″ packet:

Ingredients:  High fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, sugar, honey, fructose, caramel color, molasses, water, citric acid, natural and artificial flavor, and malic acid. (NB I photoed this packet and tried to upload it here, but I got a “not permitted for security reasons” notice when I tried. Now how the heck did KFC do that?)

In other words, each small packet contains SIX different kinds of sugar — and to make matters worse, honey is the fourth item in the list!

I ask you now, why does honey of “Honey  Sauce” need MORE sugar, and even MORE AND MORE, not to mention color, water and flavors added of any kind to plain old honey?

Plain and simple organic honey is just delicious (local is the best for tamping down blossom allergies) and it’s a white sugar substitute that I can live with in moderate quantities, just as I can live with chopped or mashed dates or bananas used to sweeten, or Truvia or Stevia to cook with.

I’m now going to toss these packets where they belong — O>U>T!!!

Our  recent Sf Examiner newspaper just had a column by Drs. Oz and Roizen that pointed to research that “now shows” that high-fat sugar-packed diets create similar impulses as does marijuana, by stimulating our body’s endocannabinoid system to make us very hungry!

Not a good thing if you are on a corset waist-training process. You want to minimize your hunger p0angs in every way possible to make your journey comfy, easy and effective in the long run. Now I know one reason how they say that eating sugar makes you want to eat even more sugar. The easiest way to control your sugar intake is to avoid sugar to begin with. That may take a little time (a few weeks or months) and effort (perhaps some headaches or nausea in the early stages) but going Cold Turkey makes more sense to me personally, and it is what I advise my waist-training students to do for three short months of their adventure.

Ms. K, my present student who is just completing her second week of training, opines that this request regarding diminishing if not omitting white added sugar, is part of the “extremity” of waist training and what I request. Note that I do not ‘require’ anything of my students; I might stress heavily facts that I know are sound from my own experience , from 27 years in the corset business, and from 16 yrs in the coaching business in figure shaping. But the choice is hers to make.

Just because life is complex and there are many motivators, many temptations, and many components to cause or address obesity or over weight, those things do not obviate the fact that we also have choices to make. Some choices are way better to honor our body and tend to improve our health over the long run. Which choices will you make?

###

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under General, General Waist Training Information, Hot Topics on Health

Getting Conscious – The Importance to Waist Training

Chicken sweet pot green beans cauliBeing conscious of many things, is critical to ease your way into waist training, and to make the next few weeks and months, or even a lifetime of corseting, as comfy and easy as possible.

On Weds. Ms. K, my student now completing her second week in our three-month coaching program, wrote:

“Re: the rice bowl I ate for dinner: I took a picture of the label, but I’m afraid to send it to you. High on calories, high salt, low fiber, high sugar, decent protein. You would disapprove; I’ll stick with the gluten-free pesto dish.” (Not that I recommend gluten-free anything if you don’t have a distinct allergy or Chrohn’s disease to begin with).

I replied in part by congratulating her for her new practice of reading labels to learn more, then advised her to make the rice bowl at home and switch to brown and mixed rices and legumes. I also advised to take her day off corseting or when she feels best, cook up a large batch of mixed rice and store it in the fridge for a week. Then cut up any veggie assortment, sprinkle liberally with olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper and put in an over at 400 degrees for 45 min to an hour. Mix those into rice warmed over with a bit of water sprinkled on top to soften it, and create her own homemade rice bowl that is yummie.

Cooking larger batches of food might seem to take more time than popping a prefab rice bowl in the microwave, but in actuality, it likely does not. Consider the time and cost it takes to drive to the store, stand in line, buy the bowl, and heat it up…the amount of time required likely turns out to be about the same, but you can get and prepare a lot more healthy food to store in the fridge and thus, minimize shopping and cooking in the long run, as described below.

Ms. K has been somewhat challenged in making a few  of the moderate number of nutritional changes that we strongly recommend that students adopt during formal, dedicated corset waist training.  To start with, she leads a busy professional life. She is challenged by a health problem that limits the amount of time and energy she can spend shopping for good food and preparing it. Her personal energy often goes into doctor’s or physical therapist’s appointment.Before starting her journey I had advised her to learn to check all labels. Before beginning her training, her practice and tendency in order to shortcut the above, was to buy prepared foods, one of them being this ‘rice bowl’.

During the first two weeks I ask each student for occasional food reports for at least two weeks, to derive an understanding of the calorie intake and implementation of new strategies by my students. I do that throughout the three months so I can find ways to present healthy alternatives and encourage the student to develop new food habits and tastes.

Ms. K feels that many of my suggestions resulted in “bland” food. The reverse is the truth: brown rice has a nutty flavor that far exceeds the “blandness” of white rice. Ms. K will never know that, or about the pleasures of the natural taste of veggies and fruits unadorned by chemical preservatives and other additives, unless she cleans her palate and practices gradually, to allow new flavors to develop.  (N.B. beware the ingredient of “natural flavors”–they are still created in a lab! Read the excellent, easy-read book The Dorito Effect for some stunning facts such as that one.) First Bite author (another highly recommended book) points out that we have to give our taste buds time to adjust and search out and realize the new flavors of unadorned foods, but the reward is well worth it. You may have to  intially trust the above experts to see if it works fro you, or trust my advice based on my own experience plus 16 yrs of coaching students and their feedback on how their taste buds improved as did pleasure in a wider variety of natural foods after corset waist chicken and two squashtraining.

Have you noted any change in the flavors you enjoy, once you started waist training, and what did you have to adjust in your food shopping, prep and eating in order to make the process more comfy and enjoyable?

 

Leave a comment

Filed under General, General Waist Training Information, Proper Nutrition Tips for Waist Training

Distraction and Diversion – Pros and Cons in Waist Training

The news today on ABC-TV’s  “Good Morning America” (I admit to watching this fluffy, popular, and pop news channel in the mornings with my scrambled egg, half a piece of bacon, and Pixie espresso) was amazing– an absolute bombardment of miscellany that somehow relates to corset waist training via today’s topic of distraction and diversion. It included but was not limited to:

  • The first boy doll ‘Logan’, was released by “American Doll”–(and it’s only 2017, just about 60 yrs. since the advent of the Women’s Liberation movement, of which I, and many good men of course, was a proud early member.) Parents and children of both genders are apparently pleased.
  • 88% of people age 19 to 24 admit to driving while texting, or running a red light.
  • Flynn was fired from Trump’s cabinet for lying to Trump (not to mention to the public) about discussing with the Russian ambassador, and diminishing the potential effect after Jan. 20, of  Obama’s earlier sanctions against Russia for hacking our election process.
  • Other Trump staff are now reported to have been in contact with Russia long before the transition period, during the election run-up (is anyone, D or R, truly surprised?)
  • Spicer in his news conference re: Flynn, said (in relevant part), “there’s no information that would conclude me that anyone was in contact with Russia before the transition period”.  Anyone notice the wrong words that news reporters are more commonly using than in the past? Is the teaching of correct grammar and the English language now defunct in US schools?
  • “Eat less, move more” is once again in the news, with a “new study” showing that belly fat and the apple shape are associated with increased risk of high cholesterol, diabetes and more. Too simplistic, right? And ubiquitous public health information of the sort proposing this solution to obesity doesn’t seem to be helping.

There are multiple reasons that I eschew pop news for weeks on end and from time to time, refusing to watch anything but PBS’s evening news program and the Financial News, plus CSPAN when a meaty program on the US or world affairs is being presented. Of course I love my Sunday New York Times, where I often find substantial articles on health and nutrition, topics directly relevant to my professional focus on corset waist training.

Slide Open MouthNews is dismally appalling and negative these days. I have a good friend who won’t watch the TV or read hardcopy news at all, except for an occasional peek at Facebook news. Pop or entertainment news is pitifully brief and all over the place, like the above. It routinely upsets me. It leads me down multiple paths of diversion and distraction. These days I fire off letters to my Senators or the White House to avoid doing nothing but fuming. Some claim that pop news or any news or programs lead me to eat more (and usually forget my manners) when I dine in front of the TV and not at my table.

Of course, I imagine pop news leads me to be sort of “up to date” when I’m not an avid fan of social media but only an occasional user. I like my privacy and prefer my friends face-to-face and where I can delve more into meaningful, detailed  conversations such as on personal email compared to 140-character tweets.

I learned recently about a beneficial effect of diversion and distraction.

Dr. Patrick Wall, the author of highly-recommended Pain: The Science of Suffering, taught me that distraction can be a powerful pain-killer. We have to focus on pain in order to feel it. We have to pay attention to injury, to be in pain. If we are distracted, we don’t feel pain until later if at all. Witness the rush of adrenaline when we are injured or in danger, allowing us to rescue or take care of others before we turn to focus on our own discomfort or tragedy.

I also learned from Painful Yarns by Lorimer Moseley, also highly recommended (watch his hilarious TED talk on YouTube) that  all pain is not tissue-derived. Some or a lot of it comes from our brains firing off neurons designed to warm of “pain” in order to protect us, but that felt pain while real, is also “not real” or  exaggerated. Just learning that fact helped me enormously on my daily walks to rehab a recent back spasm (another one!). When I occasionally trip or step off a curb a bit hard onto the street, I don’t now overreact and imagine that it is painful. I remain more objective, continue on and think about the situation. Did the trip really cause me tissue-oriented pain? I never has so far. The concept has proved beneficial for my recovery.

My present waist training coaching program student, Ms. K (pictured at the start of her program on Feb 7, left) is having a bit of a hard time  moving up in hours of corset wear a day, in the moderate training program she is following. We design a student’s program to gradually increase the no. of hours of wear from two for three days, to four for three days, to six for three days (or a img_0370similar increase, depending on several factors). A slow increase such as in this example, enhances comfort and tolerance of a new, stiff feeling of a structured garment such as the corset.

When she reached four continuous hours of wear at the latter part of her first week, my student mentioned that she wore her corset two hours, then lay down for two more hours to meet her program goals that day. But once she lay down, she stared at the clock and found that time went by very slowly. I believe she increased the difficulty of waist training by paying attention to time. It is when we ignore time (except to double check to ensure we don’t over-do our set program wearing hours), that time goes by very quickly.

I write about distraction as a technique for making waist training easier, in my new book, Corset Waist Training: a primer on easy, fun and fashionable waistline reduction.

When you build up to long hours of corset wear at tighter levels of restriction, you will surely hit the wall some day and want out of your corset. The key is not to move into pain or excruciating pain, but to be able to tolerate discomfort even to the edge of pain, so that you derive maximum benefit from the corset in your search to trim your figure and/or weight. Try the technique of distraction.

Take a walk, play with your pet, call a friend, send an email, read a chapter in your book, wash dishes–almost anything will do, and then go back to normal activities.

Also if you begin to experience discomfort into pain when corseting, remember Moseley’s point. Could it be that unfamiliar feelings of tight restriction, impediment to movement and breathing, folding of the skin and so on from lacing down, strike you as uncomfortable rather than just something neutral to observe and keep an eye on? Are you overreacting to a “not normal” feeling that your brain perceives as endangering your body and health?

I’ve never seen the above discussed  in any forum on corset waist training nor mentioned in any book on the topic. I’ll be thinking more about it to see if there are examples from my own corseting experience and that of my students, that can further enlighten me. Always happy to hear your thoughts!

Leave a comment

Filed under General, General Waist Training Information, Hot Topics on Health