Balanced Bites Podcast #407: Body By Breath: Jill Miller talks relaxation (and relaxation-induced anxiety), scars, healing, and more

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#407 Topics: Internationally renowned fitness and author of Body By Breath
Andrea Feretti Book Club

Transcripts are automatically generated, so may not always accurately reflect the words/phrases used or the individuals speaking.

Welcome to the new Balanced Bites Podcast! I’m your host, Liz, a nutritional therapy practitioner and best selling author bringing you candid, up-front, myth-busting and thought-provoking conversations about food, fitness, and life.

Remember:  The information in this podcast should not be considered personal, individual, or medical advice.

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“Now about today’s episode…

Hello friends! Today I am talking to Jill Miller, who is the author of the new book body by breath, the science and practice of physical and emotional resilience. And I need everyone to understand what a big deal this is to have Jill. On this show, not only is she incredibly well-respected in the international fitness world, she’s actually known as the teacher’s teacher and she’s trained. 

Like thousands of trainers and educators and clinicians therapists. With our programming and they have incorporated her programming everywhere from athletic to medical facilities worldwide. And not only that, but fortunately for us and for me, she’s also incredibly generous with her expertise and her time. And to have her here is just way up there on my bucket list of interviews. 

And I struggle as always to encapsulate my questions for interviewees, like Jill who have just such a broad, deep wealth of information to share. Into bite-size easily answerable [00:01:00] nuggets that really lay the groundwork for an understanding of what they’re doing. But I’m always working to get better and do better interviews and lay those foundations without missing out on some of the really juicy connections that are to be made. Thanks to work like Jill’s. So you’ll note that Jill was a total champ at taking on my questions in this interview and I just, I love her. 

So Jill is the co-founder of tuneup fitness worldwide, and she created the self-care fitness formats, yoga tuneup. And the role model method, which if you haven’t heard of directly, you have most likely, still benefited from a coach or a trainer. Implementing or recommending something they absorbed from her for those programs. 

And Jill having this 30 plus year background in anatomy and movement is just an absolute, she’s a pioneer at what she does. And at connecting the dots. Or the fascia, if you want to make a little joke, Between fitness and yoga, [00:02:00] massage, self care, athletics, pain management, recovery, and well beyond all of that. 

So officially Jill is not just the pioneer of the programming. I just mentioned. She’s not just the author of body by breath, which is our topic of conversation today. Mostly. She’s also a contributing author on self myofascial release and the medical textbook fascia function and medical applications. We talk about that a little bit. 

And she’s been featured in the New York times. The wall street journal shape men’s journal. Good housekeeping. Women’s health. The today show. Good morning America, the Oprah Winfrey network. It just everywhere. She’s also the creator of dozens of video programs. And she’s the author of the bestselling book, the role model, a step-by-step guide to erase pain, improve mobility, and live better in your body, which I remember getting as a review copy back in 2014. So she has been doing this. 

For ever. And I’m so grateful that she is. And again, she wrote the incredible [00:03:00] new book that we’ll talk about today, body by breath, the science and practice of physical and emotional resilience. And it never fails when I say that subtitle, I just get chills. Uh, one thing I wanted to point out after we stopped recording. Jill also mentioned a book club that Andrea for ready of yoga land is doing. 

And while it started on March 5th, which will be a few days ago at time of airing, you can probably still jump in there if you want some partnership and accountability and working your way through. This incredibly dense healing book. So I will put all of that in the show notes. You can grab a link to the book club, to the book as well. 

In the show notes for this podcast. And please do give Jill an Amazon review when you can. It’s really everything, especially with a new release. But reviews are always so very much appreciated books, podcasts, wherever, please. If you have a few minutes to do it, please do it. It’s so, so helpful. 

With that, let’s hear my chat with Jill. 

[00:04:03] Jill Miller: I did an IG live with Mayim Bialik yesterday. Yeah. Is a huge fan of the work and I love her. Oh, who doesn’t love her? 

[00:04:12] Jill Miller: She’s a student of mine and she basically outed our relationship cuz she loves the book so much. And um, the son, which is a tabloid, picked up on the lives and like, wrote the nicest things about me cuz they cut and paste what she wrote about me.

[00:04:33] Jill Miller: It’s really exciting. You. It’s 

[00:04:36] Liz Wolfe: exciting. That’s so cool. I mean, I saw some clips of your chat with like Gabby Reese and there’s just so many really cool people that I have so much respect for that I’m just watching.

[00:04:47] Liz Wolfe: Like, just sing your praises. It’s so cool. 

[00:04:49] Jill Miller: amazing. That is awesome. You reaching out. I’m like, oh my gosh. I know that book. Of 

[00:04:53] Liz Wolfe: course I know that book. Well you and I have, I mean, when I saw that Victory Belt was your publisher, I was like, , [00:05:00] they’ve published my book. I must be 

[00:05:02] Jill Miller: really cool.

[00:05:04] Jill Miller: we are very classy. We are in a very rare, uh, a rare group of authors. I 

[00:05:09] Liz Wolfe: agree. Class of our own. Well I’m totally gonna incorporate this into the podcast, but I guess I’ll just do like a formal, Jill, I can’t thank you enough for being here to start us out. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for taking 

[00:05:21] Jill Miller: the time with me.

[00:05:22] Jill Miller: I’m so excited to talk to you and I can’t wait to hear what your questions are. Liz. 

[00:05:26] Liz Wolfe: Oh my gosh, I have so many and I have to say 

[00:05:28] Jill Miller: like full, full, full 

[00:05:30] Liz Wolfe: disclosure. I got the book like six days ago, and it is, . I mean, it probably, it’s not appropriate to call it a Bible, but it is a like a A user’s manual slash 

[00:05:42] Liz Wolfe: it is the most comprehensive book I think I’ve ever read on anything, not only from an information perspective, but also in the varying ways that you have created this material to appeal to different types of learners. So it’s not just like reading all of this stuff, it’s like you’re actually [00:06:00] engaging in the material.

[00:06:00] Liz Wolfe: I mean, opportunity after opportunity. So I have not read the entire thing, but six days has been more than sufficient to just completely blow my mind. So first of all, I will probably be asking questions that are fully answered in the text. Mm-hmm. . But considering many of my listeners might not have gotten their copy yet, I think it’ll 

[00:06:19] Jill Miller: still be useful to everybody.

[00:06:21] Jill Miller: Oh my goodness. Thank you for mentioning everything that you just did. I really wrote the book so that every type of learner could find their way through it. It, it was very important to me to have the book be tactile. It was very important for me to have the book be visual. It was very important , for you to be able to escape the book and get into your body.

[00:06:42] Jill Miller: And, and those are the on-ramps, the off-ramps and the Easter eggs that I’ve tried to lace throughout it because it’s the kind of interaction that I like with my students in the classroom. So it’s, it’s very meaningful to hear you say that, to hear a new reader of the book come away with exactly what I [00:07:00] intended.

[00:07:00] Jill Miller: And I, the other day it occurred to me like the book is an environment, it’s a whole new environment to explore all the different terrains, territory, weather systems, um, beauty. And I feel like mission accomplished, 

[00:07:13] Liz Wolfe: well mission absolutely accomplished.

[00:07:16] Liz Wolfe: And I wanted to . This might be a question you weren’t anticipating, share as much or as little as you want to share about this but I follow you very closely on social media. And so I have seen you talk about like that there were some delays on your end in producing the book. And in reading it, I just thought to myself like, was it the sheer volume of information you were trying to put in there or how to like, I was trying to make a fascia joke, like how to fascia it all together.

[00:07:43] Liz Wolfe: Fasten it all together. Yeah. I mean, this is like 500 pages about breath. So I wanted to hear from you, , I’ve been there in that place where it’s like, I’m supposed to be done by now, but I’m not done. What, what was the cause of that? Can you take us into 

[00:07:56] Jill Miller: that process a little bit? Well, do you wanna talk about the [00:08:00] 380 pages that also didn’t make it into the book?

Liz ? Yes, I do. . So, yes, so my goodness, I, I really love talking about the, the process of writing and I don’t know how many, , authors, you know, listen to your podcast. I don’t know how many p people are interested in all the, pitfalls the writer’s block, the, , challenges 

So I guess I’ll, I’ll like rewind way back. So I, uh, as soon as I turned in the role model, which was my first book, that Victory Belt published in VE November, 2014, pretty much within a day or two they said, so what’s your next book? ? And I said, actually, do have a book in mind. And the book that I have in mind is the book I wanted to write before I wrote the role model.

It’s the book I’ve always wanted to write. I didn’t think that it was, it wasn’t the right time. So I’ve always wanted to write body by breath. I mean the title, I didn’t have the title in my head. I just knew I wanted to present my approach to gut work, breath work, and this integration of [00:09:00] systems.

But, um, you know, 12 years ago when Victory Bell approached me about writing a book for them, which ended up being the role model, breath wasn’t trending, it wasn’t the yoga space. I mean, it’s always been in the yoga space, but it wasn’t outside of the yoga space. But I did know that self myofascial release was, , a rising trend.

And so I wanted to really share out my, approach to that, which is what ended up becoming the role model, which was a really great intro into my, my thinking and into my approach in general. And so that, now, with that out of the way, that enabled me to now dig into. The topic, this topic, which I’d already been writing about, I had started writing, , elements of this book over 18 years ago because I created coursework for my students.

I had a course called the Core Integration Immersion, core Integration Immersion that I launched 18 years ago. And so there were seed writings that were, you know, 8, 18, 20 years old. So, um, I started, you know, I signed the contract with [00:10:00] Victory Belt just, uh, just about eight years ago when I was pregnant with my second child.

Uh, so I had a little toddler at home and I was pregnant with my second, and I thought I’d be able to finish the book while I was pregnant. , that’s cute. . Woo. I’m already sweating. So that was a total, there’s no f n way that was gonna happen. Um, and I guess I, if I just sort of tred through the following seven or eight years.

But what ended up happening is I wrote, got many chapters written. Um, And then I had a, needed to have a total hip replacement. And so with, so I, then, then again, I was like, oh, you know what? While I’m recovering from my hip replacement, I’ll finish writing my book . Oh my gosh. I bounced from the, the hip replacement that went really well, but it def definitely did not have time to write the book while I was recovering and getting my, my brain back together.

 Hip [00:11:00] surgery could be intense on one psychologically and one’s identity and so on and so and so then during the pandemic, fast forward, actually no, there’s one more, there’s two more, there’s two more, uh, delays in writer’s block. So the next writer’s block or delay came when I was approached by a, um, medical.

A medical book asked if I would write a chapter for a medical book called Fascia Function Medical Applications. They wanted me to write a chapter on self myofascia release. And so I was like, um, and for no money, because medical textbooks don’t pay. But I was like, uh, that would, you know what that sounds like, I’ll learn a lot in the process.

Let me do that. So let me avoid writing my book and I’ll write a free chapter for you. So I had to go into the research on self myofascial release, which was so wonderful to go through all of this additional work that I, I hadn’t seen, um, with my own approach and, um, took me an entire year to write that narrative review.

and I’m really proud of it. But yet further delay, kicking the can down the [00:12:00] road. Then there’s a pandemic, and it was early in the pandemic when Glen Cordoza from Victory Belt reached out to me. He goes, so how’s the book coming along? And I just collapsed and started crying and confessing that I had been stalling, avoiding delaying, and was so intimidated by my own project that I was in trouble and I really needed help.

And he gave me an inner tube and a plan, and a goalpost and a lighthouse, and I just started figuring out how to get this thing done. Yeah. And so by the end of the pandemic, I was able to finish.

Thanks for listening to the new Balanced Bites Podcast! Before you shut down your podcast app, PLEASE take a moment to subscribe and leave a review! It’s a small thing you can do that I appreciate more than you can imagine! And speaking of what we can do for each other, if YOU have a question you’d like to have tackled on this podcast or an interview you’d like to hear, submit the details at Let’s keep unpacking, unraveling, contextualizing and nuance-ing the important questions together so we can be empowered, informed, active participants in our own health and happiness.

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