Why have you chosen fitness blogging in particular?
The Aqufit blog [which is nominated in the Sports, Fitness, & Recreation category of the 2010 Canadian Weblog Awards] is really a small part of what eventually will be a larger fitness site where people can choose and find a fitness regime that works for them in a social, supportive environment. Think Facebook for Fitness, but with an Actual Purpose. But fitness blogging is really a natural forte for both Corey and me.
I've been writing various shrapnel on the Internet for over 6 years now, and wanted to progress my writing and experiences to something useful and tangible, rather than just relating my (sometimes interesting but utterly unhelpful) life story.
Corey has found that fitness is a fairly awesome replacement for a lot of bad things he could otherwise be doing to provide that adrenaline shot and feeling of well being that exercise represents. Fitness is a big part of our life and relationship and so writing about it — and garnering experiences and tips from a like community — is exciting for us.
How does the Aqufit blog fit into your creative portfolio? Is blogging your primary outlet, or do you also publish elsewhere/otherwise?
I've been online as tallnlucky, at various domains, since 2003. I've written professionally for Time AOL and Work It, Mom, as well as a few scattered magazines, but now I basically just write at Aqufit and Better Now, with shamefully sporadic updates at Bodies in Motivation, too. Blogging is my primary outlet, but my readers have been pushing me to write a book for years now. It's one of my life goals, and actually I think it will start to happen sometime this year.
I know that there was a recent kerfuffle about a post you wrote about weight. How do you deal with negative comments or reactions to your posts?
God. I stew. I think most bloggers will tell you that you could have 200 comments and 1 that says you have a cold dead heart and foul breath and you will stew and obsess over the latter one. Actually, I've been writing online long enough that my skin is pretty thick. I also welcome constructive criticism and am always willing to consider opposing viewpoints. When stuff really gets ugly (like it did for the post in question) and randoms start diagnosing me with mental disorders and calling me a fitness nazi, etc. I just envision the accusers as sad, lonely people in stained brown socks and mustard lips who really have nothing better to do. Can you imagine having nothing better to do than hurling insults at a total stranger online? You'd have to be pretty lame.
Also, it helps to have Corey on board with what I write. He bought me flowers last week after the kerfuffle and reminded me of all the positive comments I get from people who say that they get something helpful out of my writing. As long as he loves me it doesn't really matter what anyone else says. (puke!) (but it's true.)
What is your best piece of advice for a blogging newbie?
Only write when the spirit hits you, when you feel like doing it: your posts will be better, inspiration is obvious. Find like blogs and network with those bloggers on Twitter, Facebook, etc. It helps to have allies in this blogging gig, because waters can get rough and weird. Write for love first and money second, if at all.
Which blogs are your "must reads"? Are there other fitness blogs that inspire you?
Actually, I don't read any fitness blogs currently with the exception of glances at Bodies in Motivation, there's some good stuff there. The lack of really good fitness material online (that I could find) is part of what inspired us to start Aqufit.