Why I do this work
This is not a side hustle. Writing books is how I earn my living. I could write books about whatever, and make money doing that. But I’ve chosen to write about fitness because it’s important to me. I have a particular background and set of experiences that equip me to effectively share important, life-changing, ideas. So while writing is my job, it’s not “just a job.”
The audience I’ve chosen to serve — people who are new to fitness, are struggling, or who have felt excluded — is an especially challenging one. It’s easier to sell books to people who are already enthusiastic participants in any field. But those people are doing fine. I’m interested in bringing new people on board. That might not be the smartest business move, but I think it’s important.
I’m not writing because a book would look good on my resume. I’m 61. I’ve had several full careers. My resume is quite long enough, thank you.
The books are the products. I am not writing them as entry-level teasers, to upsell you on an expensive course or personal coaching program where we actually get to the good stuff. The good stuff is in the books.
I want the Go You Fitness message to reach as many people as possible, through articles, books, social media posts, online sharing, and word of mouth recommendations to friends, family, and colleagues. I want this work to make a difference with people — to change the thinking and speaking about fitness in our culture to include those who are current being left out, who are struggling, discouraged, or alienated.
I write about Fitness here at Go You Fitness, and I write about the Japanese martial art of Aikido at Grab My Wrist.
How I do — and don’t do — my work
Nothing I create is written by AI. While it’s fun to play with Chat GPT and other AI tools, those things don’t come up with new ideas. They don’t make new connections. They haven’t worked with real people. Instead, they regurgitate generic fluff at best, and introduce factual errors, biases, and stereotypes at worst.
I don’t use affiliate links. While that is a perfectly legit way to bring in extra income, I think it creates a question in the reader’s mind: Is she only recommending these things to get money from sales? I don’t want that question in your mind. If I recommend a book, product, program, tool, etc., it’s because I think it’s worthwhile.
While I am mindful of search-engine optimization (SEO), I don’t pander to the Google gods. You won’t find pointless nonsense packed with keywords here. But I do need to be sure that readers can find this site, my articles, and my books. Writing that could help people is useless if no one finds it, reads it, acts on it, or shares it.
I do/will collect information on readers’ interests, activities, and reading or browsing. My goal is to be able to present relevant information when it’s available (e.g. letting Highland games people know about a new Highland games article).
I do not, and will not, sell or share reader or site visitor information.
My intention is to be inclusive
I am a 61 year-old, straight, cisgender, white woman, college educated, happily married to my partner of 43 years, and childless by choice. I have been fortunate to be able to work most of my life, have never been unhoused, and have always had access to decent health care. My parents, now well into their 80s, still live in the house where I grew up, in an upper-middle-class neighborhood. I recognize the privilege those things afford me.
But no perfect life is really perfect. I grew up a tomboy who never felt like I belonged, but was good with animals. My childhood involved constant drama around my younger sister, who started drinking and using drugs in junior high. I floundered throughout school, and then wasted entirely too much time working myself sick hoping that would bring recognition and advancement. it didn’t. I have experienced, too many times to count, gender discrimination — being overlooked, underpaid, the usual. From age 12 I experienced debilitating period cramps and bleeding that limited by ability to participate in sports or regular activities. At 39 I was finally able to get help (a hysterectomy) and get on with my life. At 44 I lost my sister to an accidental overdose of prescription narcotics (oxycodone, I believe). I have experienced a lot of physical ailments and infirmities and presently have several ongoing problems. At 60 I finally learned that I have been living with ADHD (moderate/severe, combined presentation), which explains a lot. (I am sure my sister must have been, too.)
This is the long way to saying I have experienced some struggles myself. I don’t imagine that everyone can just “make fitness a priority,” and everything will magically work out. My approach to fitness and physical activity is grounded in real, messy, unfair life.
It is my intention to be sensitive and inclusive in my writing. Since the 1990s I have written using “they,” as a pronoun, and with gender-ambiguous names in examples. I support body-positivity, and the message of Health at Every Size, and I respect each individual’s right to decide for themselves how to approach size, fatness, and fat loss. I am learning more about trauma-informed coaching, and the affects of childhood trauma on long-term health and behavior. Some aspects of my writing style and the approach to fitness here might particularly benefit neurodivergent folks. I hope so. I’m still a tomboy, and now I have short, blue hair.
I will certainly make a stupid blunder now and then. I welcome kind reminders to do better: [email protected]