Hi friends

Good morning, friends. I hope that you’re hanging in there with everything going on. I just wanted to send a little note and virtual hug your way; it’s been a heavy week and the recent events have been extremely sad to witness. I’ve spent the past week researching, listening, absorbing, supporting, and donating.  While you may not see these things on the blog, please know that the Gina behind the scenes is listening and learning as much as possible. There’s a lot of information out there right now, so it’s been really helpful to just take a step back and be able to watch and listen to the important voices out there spreading helpful material. 

The Pilot was gone all week, but I’m looking forward to catching up with him this weekend and hearing his thoughts. I want to teach our babies that it’s not enough to love everyone unconditionally… it’s about taking action to protect the vulnerable and the suffering.  I’ll be back on Monday, and while you’ll see a shift back towards my typical content on the blog, Gina the person isn’t “business as usual.” There are a lot of action steps I plan to take even if they aren’t always visible on here.

My blog has never been the spot for news updates or current events. I’m your girl if you need to know what core exercises are safe postpartum and how to make a protein ball. While I do post some personal topics, I’ve largely intended for this blog to be a place of levity on the internet for the past 13 years, and so many of you have told me that it’s been a reprieve for you when everything feels overwhelmingly sad or daunting. I say that fully recognizing the gravity of our current events, and I highly recommend you search out ways to a part of the solution, as I have. There are a lot of incredible resources out there regarding how to take action for the platforms and causes that are important to you. It would be irresponsible for me to pretend like I’m an expert at any of this, especially when I’m learning alongside so many of you. Many other blogs and accounts are better-suited for this type of information. (Please feel free to share any of your favorite resources right now in the comments section! I know you’re a classy group of ladies and dudes, so please be kind/respectful of other commenters, too.) 

Thank you so much for being here and I’m sending a hug to anyone who is hurting right now. 

See ya on Monday and hope you have a good weekend <3 

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  1. Sophie F on June 5, 2020 at 10:11 am

    Hi Gina, I understand that you are focusing on maintaining your scope of expertise here. It would be great if, as you continue posting about the core content that you focus on (primarily physical activity and wellness), you can do so while centering Black and Indigenous POC voices through collaboration and using your website to promote and amplify their work. This is not just about “diversifying” the voices in the community, but also allowing for discussion around the role of intersectionality and systemic racism within health and fitness communities. Some BIPOC content creators and wellness experts include:

    Here is a list of 10 Black women fitness trainers with an online presence: https://www.essence.com/lifestyle/health-wellness/10-dope-black-women-trainers-to-follow/

    • Cindy on June 7, 2020 at 3:02 pm

      This is amazing thank you so much for sharing !

    • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 8:20 pm

      this is extremely helpful – thank you

  2. Julie on June 5, 2020 at 10:20 am

    I don’t think you need to be an expert or transform this space but an acknowledgement earlier that Thursday would have gone a long way. Maybe you can think about including a more diverse range of guests on your podcasts? Highlight BIPOC food and wellness bloggers? Include better representation of things in your links? Etc. Thank you for listening.

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:39 pm

      i will absolutely focus on this. thank you for the feedback.

      • Heather on June 6, 2020 at 2:11 pm

        Also, I’d just like to add maybe other than the very vague “everything that’s going on”, say it. Racism. George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Protests. Riots. A broken system. Pain. Suffering. This isn’t Voldemort. We can say it out loud and we should. I mean this with all respect because I know so many of us are defaulting to the vague but we need to be ok having the conversations. This isn’t the time to sweep it under the rug. Get uncomfortable. Be brave. ❤️

        • Fitnessista on June 6, 2020 at 3:18 pm

          You’re right- it’s not like Voldemort. I will definitely be more specific in the future.

          • Heather on June 6, 2020 at 7:14 pm

            Thanks for the reply. I promise I am not trying to be ultra critical. It’s a growth process that we are all (hopefully) going through. I appreciate your openness and have never questioned that you are a good person at the core.

          • Fitnessista on June 6, 2020 at 7:39 pm

            Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and feedback. I’m always looking for ways to learn and improve – I genuinely appreciate it.

  3. Jenn on June 5, 2020 at 11:32 am

    The affiliate link gift guide on Tuesday was pretty shocking. I assume that was a pre-scheduled post? Regardless, please use your space to amplify POC voices. There are tons of wellness bloggers and Instagrammers that you can highlight here.

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:44 am

      Yes- my entire week was pre-scheduled since Tom was gone. I had to go in delete the post and pause everything else.
      I will absolutely do that. Thank you

  4. Crystal on June 5, 2020 at 1:23 pm

    I definitely agree that we all need to do more to fight racism and injustice. I also think that there are many ways to do this, and we all have different skills and abilities that we can use. I work a lot and have been fortunate to not be furloughed or laid off, so for me donating money has been the best way to help. I’ve also been discussing this with my friends and coworkers. Having open conversation is important. My friends with kids have been doing that lately, which is great. The fact that you want to teach your kids the importance of taking action and doing the right thing gives me hope! So much of what we believe and value starts at home and at schools. Thank you for being honest and open on your blog, Gina. Have a great weekend with your family <3

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:17 pm

      thank you so much for reading! i totally agree that we can make a huge difference by what we teach at home and let children see the action we take to initiate change.

  5. Jackie on June 5, 2020 at 4:36 pm

    I have chosen to unfollow you and not support your blog because of your stance. Silence is a privilege.

    • Laurence on June 5, 2020 at 8:47 pm

      Self righteousness is also a privilege.
      I suppose you are a perfect human being only supporting the minorities in all areas of you life all the time?
      People don’t understand how balance is the key. Thanks Gina for being honest and balanced and not being hypocrite and brag about how « woke » you are.

  6. Danielle on June 5, 2020 at 6:10 pm

    I appreciate what you wrote – you are the first who is acknowledging that there is a time for personal introspection. That all genders, ethnicities, sexual orientation, economic status, etc can be oppressed – when we truly try to notice someone for the “content of their character” what an amazing place the world will be.

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:16 pm

      i couldn’t agree more. thank you so much for your comment <3

  7. Liz on June 5, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    Hi Gina. I’ve been a long long time reader. Maybe not 13 years, but close. You are the last of the healthy living bloggers that I follow because I have always felt you are the most real and honest. And this post was disappointing.

    I would argue that posting on your platform, which you monetize and where you have many followers, without using the phrases Black Lives Matter or systemic racism is irresponsible (if you agree with those causes, as you seem to indicate you do in your post). You don’t have to be an expert to say the words. You don’t have to be an expert to acknowledge This post is too vague to be useful or meaningful. Or maybe you don’t agree with anti-racism and that’s why you didn’t use the language – but based on this post I have no idea.

    I appreciate you need time for introspection and learning, and I appreciate that you say you are listening. But I found this entire post and your promise to return to regular content immediately with no actionable ideas on how to use your platform to promote BIPOC folks highly disappointing.

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:16 pm

      thank you so much for reading for so long and for taking the time to comment.
      i have acknowledged george floyd’s murder on instagram (and was devastated by it) and donated to black lives matter. i would absolutely hope that by reading for so long you know my heart and know that i don’t condone racism or violence of any kind. i tried to make that incredibly clear in my post so i apologize if it didn’t come through correctly.
      there is an abundance of information out there that readers can use to support their personal goals and action steps. i feel like at this point it’s become a competition between influencers who weren’t interested in this at all two weeks ago.. it feels performative to me. i will be taking action behind the scenes but my blog will remain a fitness blog with an emphasis on including more diversity in my podcast episodes, accounts i follow, and links that i share.

      • Laurence Lussier Locas on June 6, 2020 at 7:44 pm

        Way to go, we love you for that! Agree with you all the way: it’s not a competition! Keep doing your great job at being yourself, you true fans will stay and never judge!

  8. SJ on June 5, 2020 at 7:41 pm

    As one of your black readers, I am hurt and disappointed by this equivocating, “there are good people on both sides” sentiment. I know that you rarely reference people of color who share your nutrition and wellness goals, but I didn’t realize that you don’t value me and people like me (at least, you don’t value us more than racist readers that you don’t want to offend). Glad but sad to know where you stand – good bye!

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:10 pm

      i’m sorry to see you go but i appreciate the feedback. as a latina woman, it’s important to me to share more diverse platforms on my blog and something i will emphasize in the future.

      • Heather on June 6, 2020 at 2:16 pm

        Ouch, maybe don’t try to pull the Latina card here in response. You are a white-passing person, hardly the same. I truly adore you, Gina, and have been a reader since the very early days but this is cringeworthy. Feel her pain and disappointment. Reach out to her privately and maybe use this as a learning opportunity for yourself.

        • Fitnessista on June 6, 2020 at 3:07 pm

          The critique here would be people would say I can’t feel her pain and disappointment because I haven’t lived it myself. Instead, I can be angered and devastated by the injustices and horrible events that are happening (not only here in the US but all over the world) and will use those emotions to fuel my research and actions. the only things I can control are my own actions and how I plan to teach our children. Literally anything I say right now someone will find fault in it so I’m focused on taking action instead of spending my time advertising it to the social media world. And judging my Hispanic background because I’m “white-passing” is gross.

      • SJ on June 7, 2020 at 9:44 am

        You are not expected to become a wellspring of anti racist resources overnight; that would be dishonest and disingenuous. But you are a guide and model for your readers, which does mean that you have an extra responsibility. You invite your readers and followers to buy the clothes that you wear and try the recipes you do. You ensure that your research on health, nutrition, fitness and parenting is up-to-date and not harmful. Readers look to you for ideas and guidance, including the way you navigate the challenge of communicating your commitment to anti-racism.

        You know what’s not helpful as a model to your readers? Saying “No matter what, people will attack me” – in other words, giving up and saying nothing at all.

        Also not helpful: saying “This is private, not for social media.” The issues at stake have nothing to do with any individual person’s good intentions and everything to do with the system that organizes and oppresses is all. I’ll say it again: the protests, the outcry over the senseless death of George Floyd and so many others, the disproportionate impact of COVID19 on black families, the unwillingness of politicians to protect us, the frustration black families feel as they try to find space and support to simply live in this country – these are systemic, not private problems. And right now, your perspectives are only valuable if they are expressed publicly, in the same way that you describe other key values, like your commitment to health, publicly. In fact, and this should go without saying, your willingness to share your values publicly is the only reason we’re here, on your blog. To learn from you.

        The work needed to dismantle racism is not private, anecdotal, individual – it is systemic, social, political. “Winning” with different readers, being “attacked” by others – how is this the point? You are not the victim. Silence is not an option. THIS is why I’m disappointed. Do you have a lot of work to do? Towards what goal? It would have been helpful if you had started by acknowledging this.

        I will add that of course I am aware that you are Latina – this, in fact, is why I began following you in the first place, to support your work. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t benefit from white supremacy. And it doesn’t absolve you from action. Just as BIPOC bloggers and instagrammers have used this moment not to sit back but to step up – you could be doing the same. No one will mistake your halfhearted statement above as an expression of BIPOC solidarity – if that’s what you intended, you didn’t hit the mark. Not even close.

        It saddens me that I am still engaging with this post. We are the same age. It is truly hurtful – yes, I am in tears – to be reminded, through this thread and so many others I have encountered this week, how much work I have done to understand and be inspired by you and women like you, and how little you care about women like me.

        PS: if it hasn’t been recommended already, the work of Rachel Cargle might be helpful for you as you think through your responses going forward. https://www.instagram.com/p/CBAAOX3HN7c/?igshid=4rtklq1m6kfg

        • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 4:05 pm

          i really wish this conversation was in person instead of on the internet so i could give you a hug and tell you how sorry i am for your pain. i’m devastated and angry with you. of course i believe black lives matter and BIPOC need our help right now. i sit and listen, learn, and research. i’m determined to make meaningful changes and not lose steam, so that’s how i’m approaching this — the same way i approach many of the things in my life. for a start, my focus will be to diversify the voices i feature in my links and on the podcast.
          i am genuinely thankful that you took the time to share your thoughts and feedback with me. i have a lot of work to do. and six months from now, i will continue to read, donate, teach our babies, and take action to support my black friends.

  9. Teresa on June 5, 2020 at 10:53 pm

    Longtime reader here… 10 years. I’m a mom of a little, a Christian, and not super left leaning and generally apolitical. However, no matter how uncomfortable you are with speaking on the current wave of anti-racism protests and response to the most recent police killing of a Black person in our country, could you not at least write BLACK LIVES MATTER? Or END RACISM? Or SAY HIS NAME? Or even use the word BLACK anywhere in your post?

    I physically feel your discomfort with the subject matter in your 3 paragraphs, but the excuse of your husband being away is so… I dunno. Anemic? You are a super strong woman!! I don’t understand that response. I’m not trying to be mean. I could see myself writing a post just like that if I didn’t really edit it and think on it over and over but… can you please just write one clear sentence on where you stand?

    • Fitnessista on June 5, 2020 at 11:08 pm

      thank you so much for reading for so long. i genuinely appreciate it and i would hope that by reading for so long you know me, and you know my heart. i tried to make it abundantly clear in the post that i am against racism and violence of any kind. i posted a little bit about george floyd’s murder on instagram and also made a donation to black lives matter.. which was met with a barrage of hate DMs. i didn’t even understand how there are two sides to this? how can anyone be ok with what is happening?
      this is what encouraged me to step back and focus on an action plan for our family. i have zero control over what others do but can absolutely make a difference in our home and my own actions.
      i mentioned tom being gone because while i am solo parenting some of the time (when a pandemic isn’t happening), this means that with the current situation i’ve been also doing a lot of the distance learning with liv, trying to keep P from injuring herself, and that’s without zero childcare or backup when he’s gone. things may fall off the radar right now, like suspending posts i had pre-written to ensure i had good content for you guys.
      black lives matter. i’m upset about what’s happening but i’m turning that emotion into action… action that i don’t feel the need to advertise to the blog world.

      • Eva on June 7, 2020 at 8:14 pm

        Gina thanks so much for everything you’re doing!!! You are super mom and super wife! I feel for all this mental energy you have to expend trying to justify yourself to other people. all of you influencers are in a tough spot these days — I know your platforms are a blessing and privilege above all but I’m sure they can also be a burden so know that I see you and I appreciate you! And while you have a lot to learn (as do I) I know you are trying so hard.
        Damned if you do, damned if you don’t 100000000000%

  10. valerie on June 6, 2020 at 7:11 am

    I thought your post was well stated. I appreciate your stance and saying let others who have more knowledge take the microphone now. What i don’t appreciate are the comments people have made here. Darned if you do, darned if you don’t right? Chin up Gina!

  11. Kat on June 6, 2020 at 5:24 pm

    Yes damned if you do damned if you don’t. Thanks for acknowledging.

    • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 12:09 am

      The truth. Thank you for reading

  12. molly on June 6, 2020 at 6:05 pm

    I as a reader, am very much struggling with the expectations that I suddenly had for bloggers / instagrammers to suddenly become these anti-racist resources. I realize I was shifting responsibility from myself to them – I need to do the work, put in the effort, learn and speak up.

    I look forward to your workouts and good eats to accompany me as I move forward, with a promise to hold myself accountable to listen, learn and speak out for what is right.

    I hope you find some light in this next week. We have lots of work to do!!!

    • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 12:09 am

      I loved this comment SO much. Way to have the awareness that is so difficult to realize. I’ve been guilty of this myself. Thank you for the insightful comment and for being here – it means a lot to me

  13. Michelle on June 6, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    I’m a long-time reader, and one of the reasons I keep reading is that your compassion for others shines through what you write and post. There is so much unnecessary criticism and divisiveness going on this week when almost everyone is in agreement that police brutality is wrong and racism is wrong. What happened to Freedom of Speech? Or the right not to speak… or the right to wait to speak until you’ve thought about what you want to say?

    • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 12:07 am

      That means a lot to me- thank you
      I completely agree that we feel more divided than ever and I don’t understand how there are two sides to this

  14. C Stewart on June 6, 2020 at 10:25 pm

    Long time reader and second time ever posting.. (first after P’s reflux!)
    I feel for bloggers right now. So many of us are listening and learning right now, and You must do it publicly, and I agree that some of the posts recently feel ‘performative.’
    I appreciate your honesty in this tough situation.

    • Fitnessista on June 7, 2020 at 12:06 am

      Thank you for taking the time to comment again and for understanding. It’s been a tricky week to navigate on social so I’ve just focused on the actions I can take at home instead. Thank you again and hope you have a good weekend

  15. Paula on June 7, 2020 at 11:50 pm

    I found this post extremely disappointing. I have been reading you for years, but…it really feels like you don’t want to endanger the profits you make from affiliate links and Beauty Counter sales by possibly offending your conservative readers, so you chose to not take a stand in order to make a buck. This post couldn’t be more vague – did you say black once? Or police? Or brutality or violence? Super disappointing and really telling. Will you be able to look back at this period in history and say that you used your platform for good?

  16. Jessie R on June 8, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    Thank you, for being you. I’m with some of the earlier commenters, it seems so forced and performative to make everyone happy. Sure, we can all do better and be better; I come to your blog to read what I’ve always enjoyed reading about – fitness, day in the life, fun randomness. If I want to educate myself on topics of racism and BLM, I will visit other blogs and websites. I’m a long time reader and know your heart is in the right place <3 sending love and light to you.

    • Fitnessista on June 9, 2020 at 8:21 pm

      thank you – that means a lot. thank you for being here so long, too <3

  17. Ryah on June 11, 2020 at 1:15 pm

    Hi Gina,

    As a long time reader and a fellow mixed Latina with white passing privilege, I have to say your post is pretty disappointing.

    To address a comment from another reader: Yes, you are a Latina who does have white passing privilege. So do I. It’s just a fact. I get as mixed people that we get attacked from both sides for not being brown or white enough, but to act like we’re in the same boat as darker skinned Latinas or black people is just wrong.

    Also saying that you need to wait to talk to your husband to see what he thinks is concerning. You should know 100 percent where your white husband, who is the father to two Latina girls, stands on issues like racism, police brutality, and the murders of innocent black people. My partner is also a white man, and I know where he stands because he’s vocal about things that matter.

    And lastly, as others have said, saying that you’re afraid of doing or saying the wrong thing is worse than saying nothing at all; It’s cowardice. As a writer, clear statements like “black lives matter,” “police brutality is wrong,” or “end the murders of innocent black people,” are all within your grasp. I hope you’ll take some time to consider these words and grow, rather than be defensive.

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