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What being STRONG really means…

May 23, 2016



What being STRONG really means…

Hey guys!

Let’s talk about STRONG.

cassey popflex

We are all so conditioned to “know” what strong is supposed to look like. Shredded abs, poppin’ biceps, and a huge, lifted booty. At least that is what Instagram tells us. And I don’t doubt that people with those physiques are lean and fit, but you shouldn’t feel weaker if you don’t look that way. Strength is something from inside, and no one can accurately judge you for that. We all have our own story.

I used to live a life where I strived for vanity in my physique. I mean, I competed in a bikini competition – how much more physically obsessed can you get!? I worked my head off 4 hours a day to lose weight and have slightly more visible abs than I do in the pic above, where I work out only 28 minutes a day with PIIT28.

But now, the difference is, I work out because it makes me a better person, not because it makes me a “hotter” person.

I challenge you to think about that for a second.

Working out makes me stronger, sharper, faster, smarter, less stressed, and happier. The reason why I don’t skip a workout now isn’t because I’m scared of getting fat (old thinking), it’s because I really like the person I am after I exercise. The positive vibes spread to the people I interact with at work and it feeds into my creativity for my business.

This is what I call a mind shift. And what happened after that mind shift is magical.

My body started changing.

It started sculpting itself towards it’s own best shape because I approached fitness with joy, not with angst. I work out for the RIGHT REASONS.

Now, when I exercise, I get EXCITED (like super excited) when I can go lower in my tricep pushups and when I can sprint faster on the treadmill. There’s this feeling of ultimate inner satisfaction that reminds me of pure childhood joy. I mean, whether or not the scale goes down, and whether or not the muscle striations on my legs become more visible, WHO CARES!!! I don’t need an IG pic and loads of comments saying “You look pretty” to validate my worth! I KNOW MY WORTH!! Look what I can do that I couldn’t do just a few weeks ago!! That is called real strength, and THAT is awesome!

And guess what? When you focus on what matters, like how much you honestly ENJOY sweating it out, everything just starts to fall in place. You find your balance.

Sometimes, people try to complicate fitness too much with exact calorie counts, exact calorie burn, and all sorts of crazy wild theories on what you should eat and how you should work out. Do not be overwhelmed with OVER-INFORMATION.

This is the key:

Find a workout that makes you smile and keeps you coming back. It should be something you look forward to, not dread! Then, do it as much as you can (try 5-6 times a week).

Feed your body for energy. Notice how your body reacts to certain foods. If you break out or feel lethargic after eating a certain thing, stop having it! Be your own nutritionist. You just have to be conscious.

That is how you will find your own strong. Strong looks different on EVERYONE. So stop comparing yourself to others. Start comparing yourself to who you were yesterday.


Ready to hear who the POPFLEX Mermaids Giveaway Winner is? With over 11,000 entries, I am stunned by your excitement!! I read some very good ideas for future collections! So, thank you for your lovely suggestions! The winner of the below assortment is…



Screen Shot 2016-05-23 at 2.48.07 PM

Congrats Elise!


69 thoughts on “What being STRONG really means…”

There are 69 comments posted by our users.

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  1. Hannah B says:

    I love this mermaid line you’ve created. The clothes, the water bottle, the YOGA MAT, all of it! Beautiful work, and this post is something I needed to hear! Thanks, Cassey! ❤️

  2. Noy sayag says:

    Only you inspired me like that! thank you for changed my life!!!

  3. Bara says:

    Hi guys! 🙂 I need some help with finding motivation.
    6 months ago I started with blogilates and it changed my whole life. I loved working out and healthy eating. I felt amazing and I started loosing weight. But at the beginning of May I left to UK (I’m from Czech) to my internship for one month. Although I tried really hard to eat clean, it was hard to find cheap food or cook for myself because i have no time. I know that it sounds like excuse but i was alone in a foreign country with new daily plan etc. So obviously I interrupted whole “healthy lifestyle” thing. I regret it a lot cause I gained all my weight back. 🙁 However now I’m back at home. Two weeks passed and I still can’t found motivation again. I just can’t get back on a track of loosing weight. I need some advice from someone with the same experience. Or from whoever. I want to feel the same way as I used to before. I know that I can do it but I need to be pushed.. 🙂

  4. Cristina says:

    Hi Cassey,
    So I have started the beginner calendar and this is the end of my first week. It was very difficult and I can’t do all the moves yet. But my whole body is sore. Thank you for that! So today, I went exploring on the website and it is amazing. So I just adding this post because I want to tell you that your story and vision on the site is exactly matching my life now. For me it has been a long journey to find a program that works for me and my lifestyle. So I will give just a little background, ever seen my teenage years I have been overweight but I always did some time of exercise, usually it was swimming. The biggest thing I would worry able was my diet. Overall, I have always had a confident in myself and a positive body image. In my late 20s, I just started to gain weight slowly and felt fatigue very often. But I was busy running my own business. I would go for a run when I could and did not think very much about it. Then three years ago, I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer and it all made sense. So the next phase of my life was about getting better. I was a year of different types of treatments and not much else. During that time I lose my entire muscle mass due to whole body radiation. I went into remission and decided to change almost all aspects of my life. One thing was to get back my muscle mass and to become physically stronger. I tried my different program and advice from family and friends but nothing click. I never want to try Pilates because it look so intimidating. But of all people, my doctor suggest your YouTube videos and I felt I had nothing leave to lose. So I found the beginner calendar and just started. After a week of difficult workouts and learning more about your journey, It just feel perfect for what I want and your instructions. I know have a lot of work to do, not just with the videos but also changing my diet. It will be a slow process and that will work for me. So thank you so much for this wonderful programs and I look forward to continue with the Pop Pilates program and maybe trying the PIIT28.

  5. Anni says:

    It’s just so inspiring that you are not just super skinny like so many other ‘fitness’ idols. I’ve learned that being super skinny doesn’t make me happy at all. Instead my new goal is to be strong.

  6. Annisaa says:

    This really inspires me a lot and change my mind about working out and losing weight, really! it is hard to do so when everyone in your environment demands being skinny is just the best body type. Thanks, Cassey ! All the love and God Bless !

  7. Filippa says:

    Great post! I think it’s important for people to be reminded of the true reasons as to why they work out. It’s not about looking good, it’s about FEELING good!

  8. Catherina says:

    Great blog. I also blog about Pilates. My blog is in Dutch:

  9. Karen says:

    Hi Cassey!

    I am an elite Team USA ?????? figure skater and I have been a popster for three years now! I spend hours training at the ice rink (where it can be freezing at times..), so I was wondering if you could design some cozy yet stylish jackets and long sleeve shirts! Love you!! ❤️❄️

  10. Wan says:

    I am stronger than I have ever been compared to 3 years ago. this journey with you shaped me to become not only fit but also vibrant as a person. i regained my confidence and seriously LOVE MYSELF MORE THAN EVER. i know how much i worth and it feels so liberated when I finally come to that point of my life. Thank you cassey. xoxoxoxooxo.
    Plus cant wait to meet you in Malaysia this sunday.

  11. Julia says:

    Hi Cassey!
    You’re always so inspiring and definitely a huge role model for me. One of the things that turns people away from fitness is laziness, but after starting Blogilates, I have realized that working out means so much more. This post in particular really resonates with how I have come to understand strength.
    I completely understand the struggle with vanity–before, I used to be eating very little and exercising a lot, and while I did see progress, I felt constantly crabby and often light-headed.
    However, recently as I have seen some of your posts, I have become much less obsessed with the “image” aspect when it comes to workout. Watching your videos and creating schedules to work out to and eating healthy foods until I’m actually full instead of hardly eating and then binging on sweets has made me immensely happier. Thank you Cassey for always being an inspiration ❤️ Seeing such a strong woman like yourself inspires me and others– thank you for everything ?

  12. Chi Yan says:

    Hey Cassey! I posted my suggestion in the previous post but I think it got lost in the sea of comments hehe. I suggest running shorts (with elastic and drawstring)! I feel that not everyone would be comfortable with booty shorts, not just the length but also the tightness. Also, wearing fluffy and looser shorts are very comfortable when I wear them to sleep, and a plus is that I can wear them to school without being caught for wearing inappropriate shorts. Thank you for all you have designed Cassey <3

  13. Sophia Oury says:

    Hey Cassey! I haven’t been back on your website in a while, I just decided to click on this article and when I read it, It just made me extremely happy! I love the way you write and the message your sending out really helped me today. Thank you!

  14. Blythe Vrindavana says:

    Hey Cassey,
    I have a request. Do you think you will ever do a series on pull ups? I know that so many women are intimidated by upper body workouts, but when I was able to do my first pull up, I felt SO EMPOWERED! Obviously, it would require some equipment, but it would be so awesome if you did a series or program designed to help people get in that kind of shape.

  15. UNIQorn ARMY says:

    I feel like this post should memorized and played on a loop in my head

  16. Cortney says:

    Hey Cassie,
    I am two weeks into my new healthily life style but when ever I decide I’m going to indulge a little, I find myself chickening out. So my question is how often do you allow yourself a #yolomeal, if you’ve already answered this somewhere forgive me but I’m new to the club!

  17. Ally says:

    Dear POPsters, I am soooo ‘proud’ of myself and I have to share it with you ? Yesterday I did my first front split! <3 I was never able to do it and it was also my child-ish dream? Love you Cassey's and all of you <3

    1. Eiley says:

      That is so great!!! Congratulations!!!!

  18. Natalie says:

    Thanks for this post. I totally agree with you about forgetting about the vanity, and focusing on how working out and eating right makes us feel. We will all lose youth and beauty at some point, so focusing on that is very short term, but feeling confident and strong can last much longer, and it really is more meaningful. But Cassey, I have one bone to pick with you…why do you always wear false eyelashes? It’s true, I’m sure they make your eyes look bigger, and you are probably used to how you look with them, but it doesn’t fit in with the overall message you are trying to send out to the world these days– love you for you. You are a beautiful person, and honestly, I love your smile. You are just as beautiful without the false lashes. And without them I’m sure you would spend much less time in front of the mirror every time you want to get ready for a video shoot…And that means more time for doing things that really matter! I hope you read this comment and it gives you some food for thought…

  19. Karinne says:

    Congrats Elise! I had some of the same ideas! I hope you love them. I don’t think I’d fit them anyway. I’m only eleven. ?

  20. Rachel says:

    Hey cassey, you probably won’t see this but is there any way for you to make pop flex or piit any cheaper for students? With a very tight budget, I find it hard to be able to afford some of these things. Please take this into consideration!! Thanks I love you!

  21. John says:

    Hey Cassey

    I really agree. Although I am a man I follow you weekly and daily sometimes. Bodypop is my favorite video to start my morning routine. I have returned to the gym and have focused on building strength. My workouts last up to 1.5 to 4 hours I am retired now and I have the time. I experienced the same feeling as you in this article. My self-worth sky rocketed when I started to focus on strength. My rest (sleep) and my feelings became awesome and now I am enjoying going to the gym each and every day (up to 6 days a week). So give us guys a heads up because we enjoy you and your website too. So I know it is only for the women but I would like some of your workout clothes for me too. (Trendy) So what about a men’s line if you have a growing men population. Why? Because your energy is addictive in an awesome way.

    Cyborg the ZHU or (Cyborg the Beast Master) – my inner names.

  22. Karen says:

    Hi Cassey!

    I am an elite Team USA figure skater and I have been a popster for three years now! I spend hours training at the ice rink (where it can be freezing at times..), so I was wondering if you could design some cozy yet stylish jackets and long sleeve shirts! Love you!! ❤️❄️

  23. cherry says:

    So inspiring!!!I have now understood after doing 2 weeks of PIIT is that the person I have to compete with is to myself…going more down during that squad than before is victory and a sign that I am gaining strength!!!and that is because of you cassey that now I have started loving my body…thank you so much??

  24. Sarah says:

    good god you are so inspirational. thank you for posting these blogs and reminding me that i don’t work out because of 100% vanity reasons. yes, doing piit has made my legs stronger and i love seeing the shape of my arms as they’ve been growing more sculpted. but it’s also the way exercising makes me feel inside after i’m done with my rounds. i feel so proud of myself when i realize i can do more mountain climbers and high knees, and all these other moves in my piit workout. this past week i honestly don’t know how i’ve been getting the energy to do 2 rounds of piit, let alone 4, but i have been doing them, and afterwards i just feel so incredibly satisfied. as i’m laying on my mat gasping for more oxygen i’m just thinking “YOU DID IT” and it feels so good.

    so thank you thank you cassey for your videos, your posts, your designs, and most of all, your energy. thank you for talking to me through your videos and telling me that i can do one more burpee, and one more next time. you’re a wonderful motivation to people, and you inspire me to be the best i can be.

    and if you actually happen to be reading this, thank you also for autographing my blogilates planner! tears were literally streaming down my face when i opened it up for christmas and saw your signature.

  25. Amen Cassey, I feel the same way about working out. I think I will be trying Piit Soon!

  26. Michaela says:

    congrats to the winner! In my entry, aside from what I posted I wanted to see, I actually mentioned how another popster had suggested ¾ length sleeves and I was totally on board with that! SO flattering! I really hope we see that in the next popflex collection!

  27. Tiffany Rachelle says:

    I love your message here Cassey! True fitness is about joy and finding balance 🙂

  28. You are SO right on many points in this post Cassey. Thanks for helping us to feel great about ourselves! Love you ? Congrats on winning Elise! I remember seeing your response before. It’s great!

  29. Cory says:

    I love the point about not over analyzing. It is really much more simple than we make it sometimes. Great reminder??

  30. Camille Drapier says:

    Hi Cassey !

    I want to thank you for everything you have done to me. I started popilates a few months ago and my mind has completely changed since this time. I am not stressed anymore about the things in life, positive vibes surround me, I do not feel body shame anymore, my strength has increased and I feel BETTER ! I also found a new friend ; You , and a new fantastic family ; The Popsters. It is amazing to see how we can all be so supportive to each other even if we do not live next doors.
    So I wanted to thank you for all of this, to thank you for making me a better and stronger person.
    I wish one day I could meet you so that I could tell you everything face to face.

    Take care of yourself,
    With all my love,
    Camille. <3

  31. Mandy says:

    You’re a true inspiration ! 🙂

  32. Sarah Gia says:

    my best congrates to elise and i hope that i would win the next giveway {congratulation }

  33. Stephanie says:

    Personally I hope that the mermaid series releases leggings with coral netting instead of black – I love the coral color with the mermaid colors and the black is too contrasting for my color palate. And also capris leggings – my booty won’t let me wear shorts of any length lol.

  34. Annie Choate says:

    Does this mean you’re going to do a watermelon collection and three-quarter sleeves and hairbands because that would be AMAZING!!!!!!!

  35. Lennae says:

    Congratulations, Elise!
    I can relate to this post so much recently! My husband and I just finished moving into a two story house, and we did all the lifting of our huge bookshelf, bed frames, and his desk. My mom was really concerned and wanted to have my dad help us move in, but we were able to ourselves. I told her that since I work out 6 days a week, I should be able to lift things and not hurt myself because I’m strong. I also wasn’t very sore! Thanks, Cassey, for showing what true strength is!

  36. Wonderful thoughts on this, Cassey! I recently wrote a post about wanting to be driven by passion, not fear in everything in life, especially exercise wise.

  37. Esme Stone says:

    Does anyone know how to find the stretches for sore legs video?? Please help.

    1. Daphné says:

      It’a on the Blogilates app 🙂

  38. Alicia says:

    Omg congrats to the winner! Maybe next time for me to win i guess ???

  39. Tine says:

    Hey Cassey!
    I really really love the design of your Popflex Activewear and I would definitely love to get a lot of the pieces from your collections. The problem is the taxes. The prices are actually quite affordable for such lovely activewear, but the taxes from the USA to EU makes it almost twice as expensive… Is it in anyway possible for you to (in the future) maybe strike a deal with a clothing company placed in a EU country to sell your activewear, making it possible for a lot more EU citizens to actually afford it? I don’t know if that’s even possible or if it would make it just as expensive as the activewear with the taxes, but it’s just an idea and I just had to tell you, since I am actually pretty bombed that I can’t wear your beautiful activewear…
    All the love from Tine

    1. Auntie-Aku says:

      I love the idea, even tho I did already buy from Popflex and luckily avoided the taxes. But a Popflex shop in EU would be perfect!

    2. Hanna says:

      I agree with this, I absolutely love Cassie’s workout outfits but haven’t been able to buy any because I live in Europe and being a teenager I can’t spend very much

      1. Ally says:

        So am I, Hanna ? I would be very pleased if Cassey’s activewear would get cheaper for us, Europians

    3. blogilates says:

      Thanks for the suggestion. It would totally be about finding the right distributor who cares about the clothes as much as we all do! But that is definitely something that I need to look into!

    4. Gerry says:

      Totally agree with you, Tine! 🙂

    5. Karinne says:

      What is EU

      1. Jenny Rogerson says:

        It’s the European Union where a group of countries and governments work together within Europe. Not every European country is in the EU but many countries are. Hope that helps!

        1. Karinne says:


    6. Lenka Volencová says:

      Yeah, it would be great! I’m also from Europe. 🙂

    7. Halfway across the world in New Zealand, I feel you. Shipping and taxes sometimes add up to as much as the item itself.

  40. Camilla says:

    This made me smil. It’s so true. I’ve been told all the time that I Should or shouldn’t do things fitness and foodwise. It’ve been a long journey to find what works for me, because, as you say, I know best. Today when ever people tell me I shouldn’t do pilates or eat a certain way I don’t care. What I’m doing works for me and obviously people are starting to see that, because some of the people who have criticised my ways in the past are starting to admire the way I look and my dedication. I’m happy to share what I do with everybody, but maybe it doesn’t work for them and that’s totally fine. Thank you for spreading this message, it’s so important !!!

  41. Lea Adamič says:

    And I also adore your message! The true point of fitness- doing everythig for yourself. For feeling good and being happy in your own skin?

  42. Lea Adamič says:

    I am so happy for her! Well desreved*!

  43. Regina Fullwood says:

    Hey cassey can you also make a citrus line too after ???

    1. Manu_ela_roy says:

      So zingy!! I love it 🙂

  44. Jessiiii says:

    Congratulations Elise ???

    I will read the text on my way to School and i’m so excited ?

  45. Belle says:

    Cassey your amazing! Thank you so much! I need this!

  46. Heather Patinos says:

    Hey Cassey,

    It made me smile to read what you just wrote. So many people need to hear what you said. I know that in my own life I deal with the self image insecurities that many other women face, but after discovering your workouts I see life through MUCH more positive lens. I’m not 100% free from those negative insecure thoughts, but I’m on a path where I KNOW my worth, and it comes from what God says about me, which is that I’m made in His image:), and not from any other source. I find joy in how strong I am because of the functionality of my body, not the physical obsession to look a certain way like I once did. Thank you for helping me become a better me!:)

    Ps. LOVE YOUR MERMAID COLLECTION!!! I literally can’t stop looking at the popflex website..:)

  47. Melissa Hoffman says:

    Congratulations Elise 🙂 This blog has seriously helped me so much. I feel as if I am trying to strive for “that perfect body” when in reality, I could barely do a push up one my toes when I first started blogilates 2 1/2 weeks ago. Now I can do three push ups on my toes! It was so exciting for me to find that out yesterday morning. 3 may not seem like a big number, but hey! Its 3 more army push ups than I could do last month! Thanks so much Cassey for your inspiration. Blogilates is helping me more than you know and I am so greatful! Thanks!

  48. Cassie says:

    This post resonated with me so much! I was recently told that I looked too scrawny to be a group fitness class instructor and it really hurt me because after all the hard work I put into improving my strength and performance, I was still being put down. Strength has no physical restraints. It is all within the heart and the persistence to KEEP going!

  49. Anne Lise says:

    Congrats Elise and Thank YOU CasSey for this inspiring and well- thought out post….

  50. Abbie Skaines says:

    I totally needed this post in my life Cassey! Love love love it so much!! Doing PIIT really made me realize how much more I should value strength. I’m still not perfect and I still get caught up in the vanity here and there but I’m starting to work really hard on freeing my mind and body of these negative habits. Love you!!

    1. Lea Adamič says:

      You go girl?

  51. Lorena says:

    For the longest time I didn’t like working out. Don’t know if it was because I thought I should be a certain number or size. But I have found a new love for working out because it makes me stronger. With every progress I make : one more push-up , longer hold, etc. I feel proud of what I am accomplishing. Stronger makes me look forward to my next workout.

  52. Romina Magali says:

    I thought you said you had entered a bikini competition because you were using it as a mean to get more fit.

  53. Shannon says:

    This was a great post. We should all want to be healthy but the obsession with appearance can really can get on the way to that. I try my best to now for personal goals like flexibility and strength. And the funny part is I lost weight without having that as goal and without beating myself up if I eat something that I know it’s a treat. Plus I feel much better and happier <3

  54. Sherry Ann says:

    Well said, Cassey!!! This mindset is exactly what has made me want to stick with PIIT – seeing the awesome things my body can do now, and the happiness I get from working out. That is completely new to me and I LOVE it. Thank you!!!

  55. Sherry Ann says:

    Well said, Cassey!!! That’s what has kept me coming back to PIIT after never sticking with anything before. The awesome things my body can do now! I love it! Thank you!!!

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