Ok, ladies and gents, I have a question for you that I haven’t been able to answer on my own. It’s about my other blog FitnessWhore.com.
For the last two years (around the same time I started trying to conceive), I started another blog, my fitness blog, FitnessWhore.com. At first I simply wanted to try out different workout regimes and trends around my notoriously fit city, Los Angeles, and write about them. Then, I started having trouble trying to make le baby, so I decided I’d also write about my fertility struggle there. That lasted for a little while until I realized that 1. Google analytics proved that few people arrived at my blog for fertility related content, 2. I wasn’t getting the support I needed, now outside of the WordPress.com network, without being able to easily search for and connect with others struggling with the same thing, and 3. I felt uncomfortable promoting my fitness related posts alongside my most personal narratives. So, I decided to move my intimate stories here, which is essentially all about me (uncensored), my life, and my journey on this crazy planet, particularly focused on building a family and writing a novel, two very challenging (for me at least) endeavors. I’ve been happy with that decision because I’ve been able to connect with other writers, and specifically with other women like me. Endo Sisters. Infertility Sisters. New Mothers (who I hope to be someday!). I am amazed every single time I get a kind new comment or encouraging word. My fellow bloggers here are AMAZING! But I was still left with a nagging feeling. Why, despite an overwhelming amount of interest for my other blog, was I feeling insecure about it? Why wasn’t I promoting it confidently? Seizing the opportunity to review new classes etc.? Something deeper was going on.
Does FitnessWhore make YOU uncomfortable?
So I’ve decided it is time to squash that nagging feeling once and for all. I’m at a cross road with my fitness blog. Here in LA I have friends who have found marvelous success as professional bloggers (Check out Kathy’s Vegan Blog). They treat their blogs like businesses and reap the rewards as a result (book deals and paid adventures and merchandising. Oh my!). I was convinced that I, a normal woman just trying to stay fit amongst a zillion options for doing so, could turn my passion for fitness/diet trends and blogging about them into something more professional. I was convinced and I STILL am that there’s a space for an everyday fitness fanatic to share her hands-on knowledge and fitness adventures. After all, I’m not a bleached out, silicon inflated barbie with no body fat, like most in the fitness realm, and I believe that people like me want to read tips and trends by people like me – those who aren’t afraid to admit they cheated and ate that brownie, or gave in to the urge to do a girl pushup, or had to walk during the 5 k, but still managed to lose those 5 pounds AND feel good doing it. And even if I don’t make a cent, I don’t care because I truly love fitness: I’ll never stop doing it, reading about it, and writing about it. BUT, herein lies the problem, I’m embarrassed of my name: FitnessWhore. Should I be? Would you be? Are you instantly turned off when you hear it? Ugh. I know I shouldn’t care, but I do.
Here’s how the conversation normally goes when I tell someone my URL:
Them: “What’s your blog called?”
Them: “FitnessWhore? Eh?”
Me: “Yeah, you know like a shoe whore. Like I’m a whore for fitness I love it so much.”
Them (if they’re an 18-40 year old woman): “Ohhhhhh! I get it! Hahaha, funny.”
Them (if they’re my ultra conservative family members): “That’s just an awful awful blog name. Change it immediately.”
Them (if they’re the Afghani military my Dad’s been training over there): “Does your daughter know what a whore IS!? Oh no, this is very bad.”
I know everyone says you shouldn’t care what people think. That it’s your blog and you can name it what you want to. And usually that IS true. BUT when you’re not proud of your name, how can you be proud of yourself? I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it’s the social and cultural implications surrounding the word whore that get to me. In fact, I’ve been aware of the controversy all along. There’s a section in About where I explain how I’m trying to reclaim the word ‘Whore.” There are already enough negative ways to describe women, don’t you think? But yet, I’m not convinced I have the power to change our language.
The last thing I want to do is marginalize readers before they’ve even visited. People already look me up and down when I tell them I have a fitness blog. It comes with the territory. But am I inviting a whole different type of “scrutiny” with a name like FitnessWhore?
I didn’t think about any of this a few years ago when I started FitnessWhore. I was a wild and single and some times impulsive woman back then. Now, I’m starting a family, or hoping to (with all my heart and soul). Now, I want to be taken just a teeny tiny bit more seriously, while still having good, fit, fun. I recently registered the blog name FitnessHoney.com. I’ll likely lose the decent traffic I get (up to 500 views a day) if I start over. But I’m thinking it just might make blogging about fitness a little sweeter.
What do you think?