Mending Gates… Musings on Core Health {a.k.a. The One Where I Compare Your Core to Cow Fencing}

Musings on Core Health -


Now, I’m not sure if you know this, but my husband, myself and our two wildlings live on 7 acres of God’s green earth in rural southwest Washington State. It’s been just a little over a year now since we traded one-tenth of an acre surrounded by busy streets and nosy neighbors who tut-tutted tree climbing FOR a fixer-upper at the end of a long gravel driveway surrounded by woods and wildlife. I wake up every morning to the sound of birds in the air and beasts in the field {4 goats, 2 horses, 15 chickens, 2 cats, and 1 chihuahua to be exact} and I am content… However, there is always a project or ten to finish on this farm, and lately I’ve been nattering at the husbandry about getting our goats out into the bigger pasture.

Of course, the cliche term “mending fences” has come to be associated with healing relationships, but as I walked the quarter-mile back to my doorstep from the mailbox this morning – taking delight in the sight of melting frost dripping off all the rusty gates that connect sections of fence whorled and bent by pushing beasts and pulling blackberry vines – my 22 years of fitness experience whispered a parallel across my vision as I remembered my man’s comeback to my nagging the other night:

If we let those beasts {a term of endearment he uses} out into that field before we’ve fixed those gates and mended the holes in the fence, they’ll just make it all worse! And they’ll get out and run down the road, and you’ll be chasing them and stopping traffic again like when Percy got out {read that story here} last year. Everything will be safer if you’re patient and let me close those gaps.

If you know anything about the mission of Fit2B which is to stand in the gap to provide hope for those who have been led to believe that they will always be broken, always look pregnant, always leak when exercising {or laughing, sneezing, jogging…} then you might know where my mind wandered off to when The Spirit whispered the words “beautiful gates” to me this morning, and I suddenly had all these other words to write to you!

Our deepest core muscles create a virtual circle of fencing up, and down and all around our middles, and there are special “gates” accessing internal fields and private property – if you will. Those gates are supposed to stretch open and flex shut with ease {start fixing yours here} … But sometimes those gates get a bit, er, worn out and rusty if you know what I mean.

Just like gates connect and close sections of fencing, the two sides of your abs are held together by a gate of fascia, so to speak, except there really shouldn’t be a big opening in that abdominal gate like there is in those other three gates down below … Please tell me you catch my meaning? Three holes down below leading to private property… Got it? Okay, moving on {if you don’t get it, ask a girlfriend 😉 }

Yes, I know you might not think your most private “gates” are beautiful, but they are, OH THEY SO ARE BEAUTIFUL in their design and function and purpose (and also to your mate, 😉 ) But we all live on our own personal crazy farm {admit it!} with sweet little beasties running around, bumping into us, needing feeding, needing shelter, needing protection, climbing out of us AND onto us AND over us {their elbows totally feel like horns!} and you know how our fences and gates just get a bit “worn down” or maybe they’ve fallen down altogether or had to be cut clear through to even get the kids into the pasture to begin with???

And you’ve never had time or knowledge to heal and fix the broken places in the fence that is supposed to be holding you together so you can help hold others together. You just pray you won’t fall apart completely until the kids {baby goats are called kids} are grown and don’t really need you as much anymore and you’ll have time then to mend yourself.

But you will always be needed. And a stronger CORE perimeter keeps everyone else safer and stronger and healthier. 

I’ve been there with you {whoever you are reading this and nodding and smiling… or perhaps crying} so I know the embarrassment and pain and INABILITY to say “yes” to so many things you’ve had to say “no” for fear of wetting yourself or making your tummy worse or not being able to move or make love the next day. But I’m here to tell you {lean in closely now} that I’ve mended my fences and my “floodgates” aren’t open anymore, and this wee (pun intended) business of mine here at Fit2B has provided the resources to help hundreds (maybe thousands now) start or even finish doing the same WITHOUT having to buy all new fencing, if you know what I mean 😉

#surgeryNOTnecessary 😉

What if it’s been a long time? Even if it’s been years, and you’ve been thinking that your fields of fascia (connective tissue) are far too overgrown – after all, it’s been years since any sweet little beasties pushed through your gates – IT IS NEVER TOO LATE TO HEAL because – in the voice of Dr. Suess – a muscle is a muscle no matter how small, no matter how old, no matter how tall.

Unless you have a rare sort of wasting disease, your body’s muscles, bones and fascia are designed to heal themselves if you merely obtain the knowledge you need to facilitate that process within your own system er, farm, er, field… Blah. let me speak more frankly.

You can close your diastasis recti (separated abs) without surgery by taking the pressure off that gap through a consistent change in your movements and alignment. You can stop buying pads and saying “no” to bouncing around with your kids the same way: by taking pressure off your core by changing how you line up your body and move throughout each day {click to see how we start you}. It won’t be “easy” because farm work is always hard. You’ll discover muscles you didn’t know you had after just one day of labor to realign and fix your fencing, but you will be delighted to realize like I did that YOUR GATES ARE BEAUTIFUL and it’s so much more fun when they do what they’re meant to do, right?

My husband also just put in a brand-new gate on our driveway, and the setup came with remote controls and a keypad for entering and exiting our property {… um, I really am talking about my driveway right now 😉 }  and sometimes the motor gets glitchy: I hit the remote as my Mazda minivan approaches the gate, and NOTHING HAPPENS! So then I have to hit the button again and wait a little longer for the signal to work {and now I’m not talking about the driveway anymore 😀 } and your core is the same way when you first decide that it’s time to mend your fences and reprogram your access codes.

It can take time. Many members report that it took them a couple weeks to FEEL what they are doing because their nerve-wiring that sends the electrical signal to manage the opening and closing of their gates has been severed or damaged due to c-section, lengthy pushing phases, abuse, neglect, scar tissue, extra weight pulling outward, the list goes on and on, and it’s all legitimate reasons for the core taking longer to connect and close. But it will happen. You are designed to heal {read more about that here} and you might need to meet one-on-one with someone who can help you feel. But it will happen. And then as the muscles pull together, there is extra skin and stretch marks still there… and you might be tempted to again hate your gate. Don’t!

Just remember: In all of your most broken gate’s rusty glory where each chippy mark tells a story of what your core has been through – and you know it doesn’t look like it did when it was new and swinging on its hinges for the first time – you’ll be sooo happy to learn that its strength is still there just waiting for you to take it for a walk {click to read about Beth’s walking} and give it some attention (maybe a little grease, too) and re-align how it swings on its hinge AND SUDDENLY after a few days or weeks (maybe a few months if it was challenged by several cute but rambunctious beasts at once – can you say “pregnant with multiples”?) your gate will open and shut with gorgeous grace at the softest signal again… Why not give it a try starting today here with us?

Click HERE to learn more about our affordable memberships!


Musings on Core Health -

10 thoughts on “Mending Gates… Musings on Core Health {a.k.a. The One Where I Compare Your Core to Cow Fencing}

  1. JenEverAfter says:

    This is great! How do you run a farm AND have time to make videos AND take care of a family?? Do the goats raise your kids?? ;o) Thank you, once again, for the bit of inspiration.
    – Jen Hilton

    • Beth Learn says:

      LoL! By the grace and strength of God for sure @JenEverAfter … In reality, I’m not in this alone, and I have an excellent business partner and a part-time assistant who handles a lot of the nitty-gritty. The Fit2B site was mostly done being built before we moved to this farm. My kids are both in school for at least part of each day now, and they’re also big enough to help with the chores. Most “work” that I do involves supervising home, children, farm and business: A role I greatly enjoy 😉 #realMOMrealCEO

  2. Cheryn says:

    Awesome! Beth, you write so well, and you make me laugh! Thank you, this is so encouraging. I love your analogy. You have renewed my faith in my body. 🙂

  3. Susan says:

    I know this is an older post… it was actually written on my last birthday. But I just needed to write to tell you how meaningful it was to me. You were right, when you anticipated that your words would bring me to tears. I needed to hear this, but it is so hard. My days are so full of household management (homeschool 5) that I don’t take time for myself. I have trouble getting in morning prayer without 6 disruptions, let alone working on mending the gates. But, I feel God is giving me much grace right now. He is giving me this opportunity to prepare myself (physically) before my next pregnancy.
    After 1 c-section, and 4 vaginal births, my diastasis is 2-3-2. I’ve started wearing a splint, and that FEELS SO GOOD. But, now I need to get past the mental block I’m having about exercising and just make the time to do it. I don’t know when, I don’t know how… but through the grace of God I will find a way.

  4. Amber says:

    Beth, thank you! I laughed out loud, wiped sniffles and tears away, and praised The Lord as I worked through this piece. I am so grateful the Lord led me through a friend to your sight/business. Thank you for being diligent and obedient to a calling that God put on your life to use your learnings to share healing with others.

  5. Pingback: Why I Disagree with Banning the Word "Broken" | Fit2B Studio

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