17 posts categorized " Lithe Psych "


Rachel D.

I’m turning 28 on Friday!

I don’t love birthdays. I feel forced to take stock of my life and evaluate my general life trajectory. This is the first birthday I have celebrated as not a student. So, by default, does this mean I’m a grown-up?

On one hand, I do feel like I can play that part. For example:

I was appalled at the 8:30 pm start time for the Oscars: don’t people work anymore?

I “rest my eyes” on the daily

I cannot properly use the “self-check-out” line at the grocery store and always need cashier assistance

I get two-day hangovers

At the same time, I feel like such a kid. And, when I think about “grown-up” things, I feel totally fraudulent and question everything in my life.

Should I be married? Shouldn’t I at least be engaged?

When will I learn to properly apply blush?

Why don’t I have children yet, and is it atypical to be uncertain about wanting them?

Will I ever stop locking myself out of the house?

Why can I still not cross the street safely? I have “close calls” all the time (I was recently scolded by a passerby outside Starbucks for my risky moves. In my defense, I was coming to Lithe, and nothing is more important than that)

The clinical psychologist in me takes this to mean that this is a “transitional” period in my life that is inherently confusing. I am young at heart but I also have an old soul; sometimes those two parts of me conflict and make it difficult for me to feel cohesively “mature”.    

Dr. Dore: Really, let’s think about this. You express an inclination towards thinking and behaving in ways you did as a youth.

Rachel:  Word.

Dr. Dore: But you also express disinterest in many things that your same-aged peers would consider important…

Rachel: I think there’s something wrong with me.

Dr. Dore: You might interpret your thoughts that way, or you might just accept them for what they are: just thoughts…

Rachel: What?

Dr. Dore: Perhaps you might consider honoring these conflicting parts of yourself. Embrace your multi-dimensionality instead of looking at is as pathological. Who says you can’t be both young and old?

Rachel: You sound annoying. You’re a quack.

Dr. Dore: It might be useful for you to integrate an activity into your daily life that allows you to honor both the “older” and the “younger” parts of yourself.

Rachel: I see.  Like if they hang out with each other enough they will become besties

Dr. Dore: Or at the very least better-tolerate each other so that you don’t feel so confused all the time about who you are and what you want.

Rachel: Gotcha. I’ll think about it.

Image of Lithe Instructor Rachel Dore, PSY.D. wearing Lithe's Hot-stepper dress via Dom


Lithe Psych

…And then it hits me: I’m already there, I already have it. It’s the reason I get up when it’s still painfully cold and dark out. It’s both a proper noun and a verb in my vocabulary. It’s that perfect shade of baby-blue…

Lithe helps me celebrate my youth: I pretend I’m still a cheerleader, I jump holding bands so it feels like I’m flying, I bounce on trampolines, and I feel breathless and speechless post-class just as I used to feel walking in from recess...

BUT, Lithe does not treat me like a fragile child! Lithe embraces my womanhood: I slap my booty in Barlesque, show cleavage during pushups, push for one more set for a total of 30, and work it in stiletto until my legs quiver…

I’m a Lithe Instructor, and damn proud of it. Most people cannot do what I do. And it has nothing to do with strength, age, etc. It has to do with heart and passion. And that extends beyond instructors to all who engage in this rigorous fitness regimen!

Lithers, we are smart cookies. I bet you knew that. But I bet you didn’t know that regular exercise is now proven to slow the aging process and protect us from age-related disease.

Yes, we know that exercise leads to not only longevity in life but also makes the whole aging process less-cruel. But now we finally have data that makes a molecular connection between these two things! Anyone in field of science can appreciate the significance of this UK-based study published last month that proves this connection! Long story short: regular exercise induces the release of a particular hormone, Irisin, which elongates a particular chromosomal marker of aging.

So, every time I teach (or take!) a class, that’s one grey hair that disappears from my future-self. That’s one less wrinkle on my face, one less liver spot, one less blocked artery. That’s one more neuron in my brain that’s free to fire as I sit in my rocking chair with ten cats, engaging in some form of cognitive-exercise game for the Aged that hasn’t been invented yet. That’s one more pump of the heart.  That’s one more gaping stare and one more “dang, that lady’s 87?! She walks around like she’s 28 years old!”

And so, on the mat, under the bands, wearing this mic, I am one person again, I am whole, and I am so peacefully happy.  And suddenly, one year older is OK. I am OK. And if I am lucky enough, I’ll be writing this very same thing, on this very same day, to post on this very same blog, to be read by the very same people who exude beauty and strength that cannot be tied to a number. We are ageless. On Friday, I hope you will join me in celebrating that.   

Image of Rachel Dore, PSY.D.wearing Lithe's Hot-stepper dress via Dom

RAH! 18 Feb 2014

  Lithe's Rhythm Tee & Spur Skirt

Ready?  Okay!  What's Rah?  Rah is a raw, total-body, cardio-focused CCS workout utilizing Thinny Bands and light weights.  Set your Pep Talk to empowerment, join the Spirit Circle for beat-box and vocal cheer motivation, and Lithe towards transformation and healing.  Rock your body, hottie. 

*Rah has a back-bone and deep psychological roots. Stay tuned for Lithe Instructor Rachel Dore's, PSY.D. write up on it!  You'll need: Sweat Bands  Tip:  If you like Rock Steady, you'll love Rah!

Image of Lithe Instructor Julie Fannin in Lithe's Spur Skirt & Rhythm Tee via Dom



Happy Valentines Day, Lithers!

I say “I love you” all the time. And I always mean it. I have so much love for the people in my life. Other things I love: chocolate, leggings, big & messy hair, kittens, Lithe, sleeping, puns, things that are monogrammed, the color red, Oreos, binge-watching television shows on Netflix, and pants with elastic waistbands. To all of these things in my life: I love you!

I even love being Dr. Dore (most days)! I recently took the plunge into full-time employment as a Post-Doctoral Resident at a hospital for women with eating disorders.

I work a lot with patients to de-emphasize the importance of the body’s physical appearance and re-focusing that mental energy onto the underlying psychological factors that are blah blah blah…

Boring. And, more importantly, I am a hypocrite.

I don’t always practice what I preach. I complain to my friends about random things I “hate” about my body.  I talk about my muscular shoulders with a pained look on my face. I engage in fat talk. I have ill-fitting clothes in my closet that I refuse to donate.

I do these things, even though I know the statistics relating body satisfaction to all of these other awesome things in life that I want. I know how important it is embrace your body, flaws and all.  But that doesn’t mean it’s easy! I’ve met women who are totally there. I want to join that club. I have read that body satisfaction increases with age. Every year, I’ll remind myself of that.

In the mean time, I’ll be making a more conscious effort to reconcile my feelings in other ways. In the spirit of Saint Valentine, I decided to write a love-letter to a part of my body that endures much self-criticism. I encourage you all to do the same (and please share!)

Stay tuned to see how I turned a major self-perceived flaw into my most coveted asset…

Image of Lithe Instructor Rachel Dore, PSY.D. wearing Lithe's Hot-stepper dress via Dom



Dearest Ass,

I can’t remember the last time I said something nice about you. You have always been very bold, and that has made me uncomfortable for years. I feel like I don’t fully understand you. I’d review the struggles we have been through but we both know of the harsh things that were said and we don’t need to revisit.

I’m pretty lean and muscular. And you don’t fit into that category. While resenting you for this, I never thought about your feelings. I bet as hard as this discrepancy is for me, it’s 10 times harder for you*. And you have no support! Literally, your closest allies are my thighs and my stomach… and they too have endured the wrath of my evil eye. But they are beautiful, and deserve a love letter too. And you? You are bootyful.

Please remember this: yes, I will have slip-ups and be less-than lovey-dovey with you. Know that it’s not you… it’s me. Just be the bigger person and turn the other cheek. Literally.

We have a special relationship, you and I. I love you for always sticking behind me (I guess you have no choice on that one). It’s nice to know that, no matter what I do, you will never disappear. No matter what. I get it. You ain’t leaving. I love you for not caring about what I think and for doing your own thing. That’s admirable. I love your tenassity.

I love your unique shape. I love the fun curve I see when I look in the mirror. I love you for holding up my leggings up so that I can Lithe and Lithe and Lithe until my heart is content.  On that note- I love you for not being a part of my body that sweats profusely. I love that you are always perky! I resolve to try and draw inspiration from you on days when I feel anything but(t). 

Lastly, I love you for cushioning the impact from my most recent slip on the ice! It is a comfort to know you got my back in this icy, snowy, tundra-of-a-city. That was really scary, and you did some quick thinking. My tailbone sends its appreciation and gratitude as well! 2014 will your year, and it will be fantasstic.

Happy Valentines Day, you cheeky lil’ thang. I got nothin’ butt love for ya.

Be Mine,


*I also know that the Cocoa-Puffs and Oreos I consume on the daily don’t make your life any easier, and I fully take responsibility for that. I’ll try to be better. Because I really do love you. I do… I just love chocolate, too.

Image of Lithe Instructor Rachel Dore, PSY.D. wearing Lithe's Hot-stepper dress via Dom



Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 3.28.42 PM

New Years Resolutions…. I decided to procrastinate this year by musing about this tradition from a social-psychological paradigm. Here are some facts and figures to keep in mind this New Year:

WILL POWER- A real form of mental energy. It can actually be measured! We have a limited supply of it. It actually runs on glucose (sugars released into the bloodstream after we eat), which is one of the major reasons I don’t believe in “dieting” (think about it…) Will-power translates directly to self-control.

SELF-CONTROL- The ability to master competing motivations. A key factor in knowing when / how to exercise personal restraint. 

TEN: A study published in 2004 by Dr. John Norcross, of the  University of Scranton, suggests that  you are ten times more likely to change if you have a  formal resolution compared to those who don’t.

SUCCESS RATE- The act of reaching your identified goal.  Of course, the goal has to be realistic, but research suggests that a major part of this is accountability.

ACCOUNTABILITY- The more you are willing to put at stake, the better your outcome. Here are some rough numbers (taken from 2012 NYT article:

-       30% : approximate success rate, in general, when you set a goal (ouch)

-       60%- success rate when you hold yourself socially accountable (i.e., reporting to a friend or a support group on progress / setbacks towards goal)

-       80%: Success rate when you include social accountability (see above) AND a financial penalty

READINESS TO CHANGE: this is a key predictor in successfully changing a behavior or lifestyle pattern. It has nothing to do with your desire to change. SO, you can be “ready” to change, even if you don’t totally want to. This is an important distinction to make; I personally find comfort in knowing that I can change things that need to change in my life, even if I’m not enthusiastic about doing so.

OUTSOURCING- The act of drawing on support from others to aid in self-control ***I suggest you go beyond Facebook and Twitter (please!)-- you can find tons of free websites that are designed to help you set goals, track progress, compete against others who are striving for similar goals, etc.  Check out: 43things; startaresolution; hassleme; stickk; habitforge; joesgoals. Smart-phone apps are another great resource: track your sleep, calories, budget, blood-pressure, time-management.... you name it, there’s an app for it. Get to clicking, ladies!

Image of Lithe Instructor in training Cate Rigoulot via Dom


BEST OF FHH 2013! 27 Dec 2013


What a great year!  Some standouts: Busting workout myths for the Huffington Post, Sayeh and food, Lithe in The New York Times, Sayeh tries the 9 Days of Lithe, Lauren for Fitness, Lither gratitude (before & after), CCS at its best: Rock Steady, Loving your athletic body, my favorite skinny heathen, Bouncing Forward for Huffington Post, Emerald Mary, Me on taking risks, love letters like this, Lithe in Philly Mag, Summer lovin', Positive studio-esteem tips, lithers lithin' all over the world, Tips on trimming the fat talk, my apple, Lithe on the Kris Jenner Show, prepping, the bomb, major transformation, Lithe ink, Lithe's first Varsity team, Old City 6AM'ers on Halloween, my favorite smoothie of 2013, the love letter that pumped us all up, turning 36, Thinkfest, Sayeh's wedding & Forbes!


Lauren Boggi at Pogust Party 2012

Ah, the holidays are upon us. While some of us are polishing off the last of our Halloween candy, others of us have moved on to hoarding recipes for cornbread-stuffing and pumpkin pie… then comes the Christmas cookies and egg-nog, not to be out-done by the champagne cocktails with-which we toast to bring in the new year…

Most people indulge during the holidays. They just do. And most people feel bad about it afterwords. They just do! Enter “detoxes” designed to flush out the body of toxins and waste that accumulated during our Holiday Bender.

I believe in detoxing. One of the things I love about Lithe Foods is the Lithe Foods Three-Day Detox. Why? Because it does detoxify the body and can jump-start weight-loss, but in a psychologically healthy way! You still eat meals, you still get dessert (praise the Lithe Gods! Dessert!). The program does not follow a deprivation model—meaning it does not cut out FOOD, it just provides you with the purest, cleanest form of it! Of course, Lauren could have created a three-day juice cleanse without batting an eyelash. But there is a reason that she did not. As you will read in the following post, juice cleanses, for some, can be dangerous: medically, emotionally, psychologically, and otherwise. . .

I’ve heard Lithers freaking out about the Lithe Foods Holiday Vacation (Oh My God, Becky, did you hear!?...) While I will choose to wait ‘till 2014 to get my Detox on, I am aware that many of you will not. I am also aware that the Holidays, although meant to be joyous, are not always so happy. Whatever our vices may be, they tend to intensify during times of stress, and for many of us, the holiday season is extremely stressful. It’s important to keep all of this in mind so that we are able to make healthy decisions.

For these reasons, I thought it might be meaningful to post some excerpts from a recent interview I did for Redbook Magazine Online regarding my thoughts on all-juice cleanses, weight-loss, and how these elements can contribute to disordered eating. Check out the following post for a peak into my discussion with Sunny Sea Gold, freelance writer and author of Food: The Good Girl’s Drug. As a woman in recovery from her own eating disorder (Binge Eating Disorder, commonly referred to as BED), Sunny’s questions where playfully curious yet honest and caring. I really enjoyed my work with her and hope you enjoy it too.

Image of Lauren Boggi at the Pogust Holiday Party December 2012 via Stuart Goldenberg


Rachel Dore & Redbook Magazine

I've wondered whether juice cleansing could be a form of anorexia for some people -- basically being able to deprive themselves of food, but in a "healthy" context. What are your thoughts on that possibility?

Yes, but I don’t think it necessarily starts out that way… Take the non-pathological person who seriously wants to drop some pounds: while refusing to eat food for 3 days straight would likely not fly with those around them, calling it a “cleanse” makes their behavior seem more legitimate and socially acceptable. In this case, the person, like you said is “depriving themselves of food but in a ‘healthy’ context.” 

How does a Juice cleanse become unhealthy?

It’s a slippery slope because when one does this type of strict cleanse, they will likely see results—this can act as reinforcement for one’s efforts (i.e., when the outcome of a behavior is positive, this increases the likelihood that this person will engage in said behavior again). Further, they might receive praise from others (“you look great! Did you lose weight?!”…. “Oh wow, I really admire your self-control, you are so disciplined!), which further reinforces one’s juice-fasting efforts, and makes them—you guessed it-- hungry (pardon the pun!) for more. So they do it again… and again…

Is it possible for someone to abuse a juice cleanse, as they might a drug?

Yes. Juice cleanses are to be done sporadically, and in isolation. Juice cleanses go wrong when they aren’t used properly. For example, someone may follow a juice-cleanse regimen for a prolonged period of time to lose weight or they might do several shorter cleanses within a short period of time to lose substantial amounts of weight.

OK that makes sense. What else? When does it become pathological?

Someone goes on a three-day bender of eating and drinking whatever they want, followed by a three-day “cleanse” to counter-balance the “damage” they did. It may be seen as a quick fix and might be appealing to someone with that type of lifestyle. BUT it becomes “pathological” when an unhealthy habit is formed: It could quickly turn into detox, then retox, then detox again pattern. This is not unlike the binge/purge cycle of Bulmia Nervosa: consuming a large amount of calories in one sitting and then “purging” the body of said calories through a variety of means. It’s the same underlying cycle regarding impulsivity and loss of control followed by compensatory mechanisms to restore one’s sense of control and emotional peace.

So why do some people try a juice cleanse and emerge  just as mentally healthy pre-cleanse, while others may fall into a full-blown eating disorder as a result?

It has to do with the person’s goals, coping skills, and personality factors. Many people will do a cleanse as a way to lose weight but really it’s supposed to be a springboard for weight loss—a kick-start to a healthy and balanced low-calorie diet. But people don’t get that and instead see this as a quick fix: they do the cleanse… and of course they lose weight—much of which is water weight—and the body goes into starvation mode; then they resume their normal eating habits (and most likely indulge a bit as a ‘reward’) and not only do they gain the weight back, but they might even gain additional weight which might compel them to adopt unhealthy habits in efforts to “re-lose” the weight in addition to that which they gained post-cleanse. They think to themselves “well I thought I was going extreme by doing this intense & expensive three day cleanse but not even that worked so I guess I need to go even more extreme!”

On the other hand, do you think it's probably okay for someone who really has no eating disorder tendencies to try a cleanse if they're curious?

Definitely. The most important thing is to educate your self, and have a good understanding about yourself. What makes you tick? What triggers maladaptive coping behaviors? If you have struggled with disordered eating, it’s probably not a good idea for you to introduce a rigid diet into your life because that would trigger all kinds of thoughts and behaviors that aren’t good for you.

Regarding juice cleanses, I choose to remain completely neutral. I am not saying that you should do them, and I am not saying that you shouldn’t do them. For some people, doing a juice cleanse can be the beginning of a beautiful journey towards better health, totally! I am only saying that, like adopting any diet or lifestyle change, you educate yourself.

Any advice for those of us who are curious to try a juice cleanse?

Let me first say that I am no expert in juice cleanses! Nor do I possess advanced knowledge in nutritional counseling! If you want to try it, do your research so you know what you are putting your body through, because it is a shock to the system and should only be done per the directions of the company supplying the cleanse in conjunction with a consultation with your physician. Set realistic expectations. If you want to try it, make sure the reasons for which you are doing it are healthy.

What is the WORST piece of weight loss advice you have ever heard?

Such a good question! I have definitely heard many things, but the sad part about that is most of the things, no matter how disturbing/ grotesque etc. they may be, do work to some extent other wise they wouldn’t have been expressed to me.  I choose not to comment on that or repeat these kinds of things because that makes those tips available to others. It’s so easy for things like this to be taken out of context and used for evil instead of good! Even though most people would see those things and laugh or cringe, someone who is not well, psychologically, would see or read that and think “oh. I’m going to try that!”

Article via Redbook Magazine Online & image of Lithe Food's Cashew Milk Mini via Lauren

25 THINGS {BY SAYEH}! 16 Oct 2013


When Rachel Dore burst onto the Lithe scene as an instructor, I was immediately taken with her confidence. She didn't seem the least bit tentative or unsure--in a good way. I found her style energetic, yet no-nonsense. And when it comes to form, she ain't playin. She insists you Lithe correctly--pushing you to get the most out of your 60 minutes with her, which I appreciate. And as if that wasn't enough, she began to wow me with her blunt, yet caring approach in her column. She tells us the truth in a..."this is how it is ladies, and we can do better" kinda way that I love. I was eager to learn more about her, and was not shocked to find out that her 25 things are as interesting as she is. 
  1. I come from a family of lawyers. My mom’s an attorney; my father is a professor and author.
  2. As I child, I was VERY serious.
  3. I have a twin brother named Philip. He’s just awesome. He and I are both half-Indian, but he actually looks it!  He’s … a lawyer.
  4. I’m barely 5’2,’’ but people often think I’m taller. I fake it with huge hair.
  5. I can play music by ear. For 2 years, I tricked my piano teacher into thinking I could read music.
  6. I was raised to value culture and eclecticism. My father is fluent in English and French; he speaks 4 Indian and 2 African dialects. My mother is fluent in English, French, and Spanish.
  7. I speak French fluently. When my brother and I were 10, my parents temporarily re-located the family to France. My brother and I started our first day of school with a pocket dictionary and a post-it with “may I go to the bathroom” written on it in French.
  8. In high school, I was a cheerleader and Editor-In-Chief of our yearbook.
  9. I trained extensively in ballet, tap, jazz, and modern dance for about 8 years. I was in a professional performing troupe for 5 years.
  10. I went to undergrad at Loyola University in New Orleans. I was a Delta Gamma (viva la delta gee!) I’ll forever be drawn to anything with an anchor on it.
  11.  I am a proud survivor of Hurricane Katrina.
  12.  I am known for my voracious appetite and my love of puns.
  13.  I am also known for my love of Oreos, cereal, and chocolate.
  14. “Fake it ‘till you make it” is the best piece of advice I have ever received.
  15. Most people that know me outside of Lithe would describe me as un-athletic and lazy—especially those that know me well.
  16. I would describe myself as “part ninja, part perfectionist.”
  17. I am a DIY kind of gal. I love getting creative! It’s so important to exercise that part of the brain!
  18. I moved to Philadelphia directly from New Orleans to pursue grad school and graduated last spring with my Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.)  
  19. My clinical areas of expertise include: school psychology, eating disorders, and the psychology of fitness.
  20. Since graduating, I have done several media interviews on modern pop-culture trends that promote disordered eating and thinking in women. So interesting.
  21. My middle name is Zulekha.
  22. I constantly cycle through growing my hair long, then chopping it to my jaw and donating it. It started in college after my good friend’s mother passed away from cancer.
  23. BRUNCH is my favorite meal of the day.
  24. I’ve always been this size and shape. My motivation for exercising is the endorphin-rush and the energy-boost I get post-class.
  25. I am rarely seen in jeans. I just don’t care for them.

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