December 11, 2022
Fat or Phat?

Instructors Training - "Fat or phat?"

It’s that time of year --  when we all are thinking about weight loss, making resolutions, and putting together a strategy to do something about it.

Brian Bradley Fat or PhatBody & Soul® instructors are primed to help, especially with recent training. At the 2022 RECHARGE™ annual training for Body & Soul® instructors, education focus on the hips took a surprising and interesting turn in the “Fat or Phat” session led by Brian Bradley of The Egoscue Method. It was a memorable moment when he projected a picture of the human body lymphatic system, stood in awe, and proclaimed the perfection of God’s creation! 

Ever since Hippocrates mentioned the lymphatic system in 5th century BC, there have been studies after studies linking it to human health and weight management. Basically, our lymph system is the garbage disposal of our bodies. It filters our system, eliminates toxins, and delivers nutrients which are important for immunity, good health, and weight loss.  

We want our lymphatic system to work properly. Things that work against that are stress, too much sitting, lack of activity, poor posture, and injuries that lead to poor body mechanics. Signs that your lymphatic system may be blocked include:

1) bloating,
2) chronic fatigue,
3) stubborn weight gain,
4) brain fog, and
5) swollen lymph glands.

The lymph system moves waste and toxins through lymph fluid. If the lymph highways become blocked, the fluid and wasteRunning abs back up in nearby parts of the body. Toxins seep from those blockages into nearby areas including fat cells and end up creating more fat.

What does our lymphatic system have to do with exercise? That is where it gets interesting! We all know that the “Fat” issue can, in part, be addressed by burning more calories through movement, although you cannot out-exercise a bad diet. But what about the “Phat” issue—you know, the unexplained and often spot gains on your body. Can exercise professionals in good conscience claim that exercise will spot reduce?  No! Well, what if the issue is a “Phat” problem. Could it be that there is lymphatic blockage in that area?  Yes!  If that is the case. Would it make sense to address what caused that blockage and fix those problems (see above)?

Ruth Ann classThe psoas (hip muscle anatomically described as a hip flexor) and postural alignment are key in dealing with the “phat” issue and a properly functioning lymphatic system. In fact, our legs (powered by the pendulum movement of the psoas) are the main pumping mechanism. Interestingly the muscle strategy here departs from conventional fitness wisdom which is to intensify the exercise effort. The psoas has multiple functions which include some finely nuanced functions relating to metabolism, immune systems, digestion, elimination, and emotional health. That means that psoas health must be addressed with toning, softening, and release and supported with a properly aligned and operating musculoskeletal system.

As Body & Soul® choreographers and instructors study this intricate body designed by our Creator and incorporate emerging research, the goal for our faith and fitness workouts is to address the entire being and help students maintain and strength their temples!

CelesteRuth Ann Dreyer, Regional Director and Instructor, Oklahoma

Ruth Ann loves teaching classes at Quail Springs Baptist Church, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, and The Springs Church in Oklahoma. She is approved to teach all Body & Soul® programs. She oversees both the South and West Regions of Body & Soul®. Ruth Ann is married to her amazing husband Roger.

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