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Ask A Fitness Model:
Yes I'm Back!
After a long hiatus from my writing career, things have settled down over here in LALA Land, and I have a little mini break with the impending actors strike, which you may or may not know about.
It has been so long since I have gotten a chance to answer questions, and with a plethora to choose from, I have chosen those which I feel were incredibly dynamic and interesting in their own right. So, without further adieu, I will begin...
[ Q ] Hey Christina,
I hope you can help me with an issue that's cropped up since I started really getting into fitness and working out. You have definitely been a role model for me because I'm about the same height and weight as you, and I'm also considered a very good looking girl. I'm not interested in being overly-bulky or mistaken for a guy (you can't even really see my muscle definition until I flex), but I love that my workout routines have made me more toned and fit.
Anyway, the problem is that as I've increased my workouts, my boyfriend has noticed--and at first that was a good thing! But then the other day he was like "Wow-- you're getting pretty strong... for a girl", and I said, "What do you mean--for a girl?", and I put my elbow on the table and challenged him to an arm wrestle.
I was just fooling around, even though I did want to show him that the pullups I've been doing are for real, and he shouldn't underestimate me! I didn't really think I could beat him, because even though he doesn't workout at the gym much, he's got about 45 pounds on me and he's pretty athletic.
So he accepted my challenge and much to my surprise I found I was able to hold him even for the first few seconds, and then I slowly started to wear him down, and after a pretty long struggle, I pinned his wrist to the table!
Well, he turned beet red and said "2 out of 3", and in the re-match I beat him again. Then we did lefty and that was even worse for him--I slammed his wrist down in seconds!
So I have to admit I had a pretty good laugh at his expense, and teased him a little about being beaten by a 125 lb. girl, but I didn't realize how seriously he took it. I really bruised his ego and he's challenged me to re-matches several times since then, and I've beaten him every time. But even though I don't laugh about it anymore, and make sure not to rub it in when I win, his attitude is increasingly childish--he gets really mad when he loses and it's gotten to the point where I refuse to answer his challenges anymore--which just makes him madder!
So I have to ask--as a very attractive woman who also is strong, have you ever beaten a guy--boyfriend or otherwise--in a contest like an arm wrestle or wrestling match and dealt with this ego problem? If so, what did you do?
I don't know what else to do except let him win, and I don't really think I should have to do that. (Plus I think he'd realize it and get even madder at me).
Any advice would be helpful!
(A sister and fan!)
First off, thanks so much for the email. This I believe is a common problem, not only in physical fitness, but in life. Some men get their egos bruised when their women excel and or surpass them in life... whether it be professionally, socially, financially, or physically.
Not an uncommon problem. I have dealt with this before, on many different levels. Where do we draw the line of feminism, and still being respectful of our partners feelings? What is the right thing to do in any relationship if this should arise?
I am by no means a relationship expert, but I can tell you that having been in a few competitive relationships, it is very difficult to know when it is you being overly confident, him being insecure, or a combination of both. If competition exists in a relationship, it can be a healthy thing. If it goes too far, it can be a relationship killer.
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In your particular situation, rubbing it in was obviously to you in hindsight not the best move. I don't think you did the wrong thing by not letting him win, but there is a time and place for everything. Maybe now the right thing to do would be to throw in some fun incentives that will allow him to feel good about being beaten... say for example, you guys make it interesting and bet favors. Like a win/ win situation.
You are clearly in a safe, committed relationship so why not make it things that you trade in the bedroom? Say you win, he gets to do something fun to you, he beats you, you owe him one so to speak. That way, it is fun no matter what, and nobody is concerned with the actual competition as much as the fun outcome later? And, okay, maybe it won't hurt to let him win just one.
Lets put it this way, sometimes you have to lose a battle to win the war... you know what I mean?
Hope that helps. Keep being strong, sexy, and feminine! I love hearing a story like yours! P.S. Definitely not a bad problem to have - being stronger than a guy!
[ Q ] Dear Christina,
I'm psyched to have found this column. I have SOOOO many questions but I'll just start with one. I am 42 and have just started to realize my dream of becoming a figure model.
There are thousands of supplements out there. With Ephedra off the market, it just seems that they are all loaded with caffeine. Have you found any supplement out there that actually works by boosting energy and burning fat? Thank you very much for your advice.
Glad you found the column as well! Congrats on realizing any dream, but especially on one of health. It is never to late to begin with commitment. I have been through so many fat burners, I can not tell you how many since I have come to be in this industry.
I actually just signed to be the face of the company you have probably heard of, BSN. I can honestly say, their fat burner, Atro-Phex, is the best non-ephedra fat burner on the market. It gives you energy, suppresses appetite, and not only does it not make me jittery, but I have a strange "elated" feeling when I take it, if you will.
Almost the same effect of
St. Johns Wort, as if it soothes my nerves. Whenever I give any of my girlfriends a box of it, they immediately go buy more.
While no fat burner is by any means a substitution for the diet and exercise, I think a good fat burner is an excellent addition to any regime. As with all other supplements, make sure to check with your doctor before trying anything new.
[ Q ] I have a question for you. Most women in fitness magazines have unbelievably perfect skin. Are there any supplements that support that? And for girls with pale skin, how would you even out the skin tone and have an overall perfect color? Help!
The answer can be made clear in one word: AIRBRUSHING! No one looks how they do in person in magazines. Not even yours truly, LOL! In fact, with models they are constantly having dirty weird makeup brushes put on their faces over and over during a shoot that acne is a common problem.
And, just so you know, it doesn't get any paler than me. I am German, and Irish. I do not tan well! I love two things for a perfect tan, MYSTIC TAN, and California tan. Both are airbrushed on, and really only stay pretty for about 5 days - just enough time for a vacation or photo shoot.
I am pale most of the time, unless I am shooting. Then I am airbrushed, but you wouldn't know it because it is so natural if done right. As far as keeping a clear complexion, I get regular facials, use a face wash with glycolic acid, never sleep in my makeup, and get monthly blue light treatments at a salon in LA called "Kate Somerville". You can get these treatments anywhere, it is basically a light that changes the way your skin reacts to bacteria and minimizes breakouts. Not a bad investment!
Orally, I take a multivitamin, drink tons of water, and avoid dairy. I am allergic, and find it to be a kicker for acne breakouts. Some of my friends breakout when they eat peanuts, or nuts. Maybe try and experiment with cutting certain foods out of your diet, and DRINK WATER. All the time. It is an enormous skin enhancer- when you don't drink enough your skin tends to look much worse.
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P.S. Preparation-H Cooling gel all over your face before you go to bed will immediately tighten it if you have a shoot the next day. Just expect it to be really tight and dry in the morning.
[ Q ] I been on a strict diet of chicken, oatmeal, green vegetables, egg whites & potatoes for about a month. I've also been working out really hard, strength training, etc. and I haven't lost any weight. Why is it taking so long & do you have any tips for increasing fat loss? Please help! LOL! Thanks.
Right away I see two flaws just in two sentences. You make no mention of cardio training, and potatoes - how many? How often? Are you eating six small meals a day? Are the carb meals reserved to just the first two-three of those?
You should be doing cardio for a minimum of 45 minutes to an hour a day if you are trying to really increase fat loss. At a month in, you should be seeing some results.
It usually takes about a month to start seeing good results, but clearly if there are none, you are either consuming too many carbs, or not doing enough (or any cardio).
Cardio Super Feature.
Here you will have easy access to the best cardio methods for fat loss, general health, endurance and how to make this seemingly boring activity fun and exciting!
[ Check Out The Cardio Super Feature Here! ]
I have an amazing nutritionist who is very reasonably priced, Tony Haines. If you really do not have any idea about what you should be eating, and how I would recommend hiring him. Feel free to email him at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell him I sent you.
Definitely increase the cardio, keep up the weight training, but maintain high reps, supersets, even throw in lots of exercises with your own body weight like walking lunges across the room, superset them with deep squats of your own body weight, and make sure to keep sugar, alcohol, bread, and dairy at a minimum.
Keep up the hard work, and stay motivated! Feel free to email me any questions that you may have at email@example.com! I will do my best to utilize them all and answer your questions in my future bimonthly issues of Ask A Fitness Model!
Best in health,