Training Log: Mindgame Snatches

I know you know that I have a mind game with the snatch test I’m doing weekly.  I feel like I write about it all. the. time.

Truthfully, it is easier.  Truthfully, I am fully able to do it.  Truthfully, I start to dread it about three days before I ACTUALLY have to do it.

Truthfully, I don’t know why.

The snatch test is only a tiny snippet of the RKC, and yet it’s the mind game for me.  I don’t know why.  Probably because it makes me feel like what I’d imagine you’d feel like if you smoked a pack of cigarettes all within 30 seconds.  Winded and a little burn-y in the lungs.  And it is ONLY FIVE MINUTES OF MY TIME every week.  Only five!!  And I let it take up so much of my mental space that it’s a little embarrassing.

So, I recorded it today.  I’ve been recording it for awhile, but I can’t share those with you because there were too many cuss words in those videos.  Today, I managed to make a clean one!  So I guess I have that going for me :)

Other than that, training if swell.  Nothing new.  I was sick of looking at kettlebells this weekend so I did two Lift Weights Faster Too circuits instead of my normal training to give myself a kettlebell breather.  Thankfully, yesterday I wanted to work with my bells again.

Then today I did a bunch of work and then the snatch test and then some more work.  Booyah.  Done with that snatch test beast for another week.

This coming week will be more of the same.  Bells, bells, bells.  The month of May?  Bells.  The first little bit of June?  More bells.

I feel like it should be Christmas with all these bells, not spring :)

Why I Think The Diet Mindset Is A Hot Mess

Before you read this, know THIS.  I don’t think losing weight or dropping a few pounds or caring about how you look naked is a bad thing.  I don’t!  I just think that there are other ways to get there that trump “being on a diet.”  And that sometimes it is super easy to get mislead and we focus on things that aren’t actually positive for us in this process.  

Aside from the past few years, I’ve probably been on a diet since I was 18.  In some form or fashion.  Maybe a year or so earlier.  Maybe a year or so later, I don’t really remember.  I DO remember weighing myself a lot in high school, though, because I “thought” my number was higher than my friends’ numbers.

I think I did Atkins something or other (or what I thought was Atkins anyway….since I don’t think I really learned what Atkins was) first.  Then, guess what it was?  The thing that annoys the EFF out of me the most – the Multi Level Marketing shitstorm – oh yes, yes, yes….I too got sucked into the black hole that is Herbalife (no, getting that shaky feeling is NOT normal.  Neither is feeling hungry all the time.  Or drinking your meals.  Or tossing back handuls of pills).  TWICE.  For at least $200 a time.  I’m pretty sure I then moved onto Weight Watchers, where I got amazing at counting, and putting meals together that were point friendly, but to me, tasted like shit (I’m actually not trying to knock Weight Watchers – I just learned to eat stuff I really didn’t want, and then binged on shit I did want in large quantities after my weigh in….which clearly is not a good idea).  I was so successful on weigh in day, dropping a pound or two like  good little girl, only to fall “off the wagon” for the next two days and eat garbage, and then count, count, count again.  I think then came Paleo.  Eat like a caveman!  Oh yes!  Here we go!  Lots of fats.  Bacon all the way.  Protein is good.  Carbs are the devil.  You don’t need carbs to operate, they said.  You should be able to operate off low carbs, and move your body and watch slabs of fat drop off.

What did I learn in all of these instances?

I learned exactly why the flip I think the diet mindset is a hot mess.

I learned in all of these instances that less is the only way.  The way that I determined that I was successful was driven by less.  My weight needed to be less.  My calories (or carbs, or fat, or “dirty” foods) needed to be less.  MUCH less.  My clothing size needed to be less.  Side note – have you ever bought a piece of clothing in a smaller size to “motivate you to fit into them?”  I have.  That’s effed up, isn’t it?

Because of my obsession with less, and all of these little “diets” along the way……can you guess what happened?  I became CONSUMED.  With the way I was eating.  Wait, my calories/points/carbs/whatever are GONE for the day, but it’s Friday night and we are going out to dinner with friends.  Now what?  Oh sure, eat the biggest pile of immediately available food ever, combine it with alcohol, and feel guilty after it’s gone so keep going.  Welp, wake up feeling like shit on Saturday, so that’s out too.  Might as well keep going.  Sunday?  Eff it, let’s roll.  I’ll eat shit I don’t even want because tomorrow is MONDAY…..and YAY, I can get “back on plan” and feel in control again.  My conversations?  Revolved around “oops, I shouldn’t eat this, I’m bad.”  My thoughts?  Same freaking thing.

I know I’m not the only one that’s ever gone through this cycle.

I know I don’t have to tell you that this isn’t a good place to be. 

You see, diets completely gave me the shaft.  Less does not work for me.  I am not a less person.  And I was trying to operate as one.  I didn’t fail.  I wasn’t the failure in these situations.  THE DIET FAILED ME.

THANK GOD, seriously, I’m pretty sure The Big Guy put me somehow in front of weight training and iron.  I really do.  That was my salvation.  I’m not joking.  I had to learn the same stupid lessons over and over and over, but I learned them.  Weight training, moving iron, lifting weights, and GAINING STRENGTH do NOT operate well with “less.”  They are complete opposites.

You CANNOT BUILD and diet.  Not really.  Ask a figure competitor!  They take their off-season and bulk and gain and BUILD, and then shred down to compete.  Ask an athlete!  You cannot rock your sport while eating like a bird.  To build – your skill, your muscle, your work capacity, WHATEVER, you must be MORE.

More food, more calories, more protein, more carbs, more fats, whatever.  But to build, it must be more.  What I was after was strength, and muscle….because that stuff is the bees knees.  At least to me.  Because my personality and mindset is such that I feel LIKE A BOSS when I am self-sufficiently strong and able to do things and move things and be things without the assistance of others.  I’m not motivated by 20 repetitions with an 8 pound dumbbell.  I’m motivated by the ability to move my husband’s bodyweight off the floor (in the form of a barbell slapped with plates, not actually lifting him off the floor…..although………)

You guys, the diet mindset PUT LIMITS ON ME.

And I believe it puts limits on everyone.  ESPECIALLY WOMEN.

We limit ourselves by the calorie range we think is acceptable for us (whether or not it has anything to do with health or science).  We limit ourselves by not eating carbs because our friend or some TV guru said they were the devil.  We limit ourselves by only putting in a certain amount of energy in our poor bodies and then pounding out the calories through ridiculous workouts.  We don’t stand a chance in this place, do we?

We need to shift our focus to MORE.

How can we be MORE?  How can we build our work capacity MORE.  How can we gain MORE strength (whether physical, mental, WHATEVER)?  How can we have MORE compassion with ourselves and our bodies?

MORE takes a LOT of energy.  We eat our energy every day – and if we are focused on MORE, it takes a lot MORE than what some lame ass diet has been telling us.  More nourishment, more compassion, more self-care, more sleep, just MORE of a lot of things.

Diets are a hot mess because they put a limit on what we can be.  Food and calories and carbs and all that stuff are NOT scary.  Or evil.  Or even a little bit bad.

Eff diets and being consumed by them.  Find MORE.  Be MORE in your life.





Training Log: Workin’

Did another check-in with my coach!  I am in a good place.  The strength is built, the endurance is there too.  I’m writing myself notes on what happened so I can refer back to this as needed :) :

  1. Snatch test is fine.  Right now, I can easily (even if I get bucky about it) bust it out 10 reps on the left, 10 on the right, and rest the remainder of the minute.  This is probably how I’m going to take the official one.  It allows me time, and then I don’t just slop it out and wreck my hands.  BUT, I’m going to try a few all out ones, where I go for 100 reps without rest.  My guess is it will make me VERY bucky.  You know, because CARDIO.  Also, now, I’m adding in work BEFORE my snatch test.  When I take it at the RKC, it will be in the middle of the second day – so I’ll already be tired and my hands and grip will be sore and shot.  So we are trying to simulate that right now as well.
  2. My strength is there.  I’m happy I get to officially test with 16kg’s.  They are feeling light for me now.  Many times, I’ll take a few presses and front squats with the 20kg’s because that feels more appropriate right now.  I’m so happy to be in this space because I know the volume of three days will add up for me, and I’m happy I’m comfortable doing it with the right bell size.
  3. The weak links – my Elvis knee on the right side, some hip and knee thingies, shoulder stability, and a little core stability…..those are all getting cleaned up.  They are SLIGHT now, as compared to very visible when I started this process.  YAY!  I can feel that too.  All my lifts FEEL good.  And strong.  And stable.
  4. We are pushing my cardio day up a notch for the next few weeks.  I’ve been doing shorter sets of things.  Now, I’m going to do a really long set – 20 to 25 minutes and go straight through, trying to work down the rest periods as we go.  Only for the next couple weeks, and then back off to the old plan for May.  We are also adding in a little extra single leg work and another squat day for those same few weeks, and then back off a bit again in May.
  5. May will be spent how I spent the last 6 weeks – at a good amount of volume but not overwhelming.  There really isn’t time to build anything crazy between now and the RKC.  The work is done.  Then in June, I will back down even more.  My “assignment” for the last two weeks is eat well and sleep well.  And do some movement – nothing crazy just good movement.  And the last week eat and sleep well with not a ton of movement.
  6. Don’t get injured or do stupid shit.

Other than that, you will catch me eating, sleeping, and training.  I’m excited to be in this place!!  The thought of preparing for all this months ago was very overwhelming, and working with a coach was TREMENDOUS accountability and guidance in a process that could easily throw me into freeze and do nothing stage.  I’m excited (and scared shitless) for the RKC.  I’m excited to be surrounded for three days with people who think like I do.  And I’m excited to learn!

I Sometimes Have Mom Guilt

Mom guilt is rough.  I think I spent the first year of Emma’s life (she’s two right now) thinking I should/could only be away from her when I was working.  After that, I should (and mostly wanted to) be home hanging out with Emma and my hubs.  Even thought I ALSO wanted to be working out or doing things for me sometimes, it made me feel tremendously guilty.  Like TREMENDOUSLY.

Once we started moving past the one year mark, I started realizing that I was basing everything I was doing around Emma and I wasn’t always doing things FOR ME.  Don’t get that ish twisted.  Of course Emma is my priority among other things (a marriage, a business, etc), but I had lost a little bit of that spark that used to come from me time.  Much of my me time comes in the form of workouts – that’s just what I like to do.  I also like to go and get a massage or the random pedi, but I freakin’ enjoy workouts, and the bonus is that I run a small gym, so “me time” comes at times when absolutely no one else is there, and it is glorious.  It is quiet (or freakin’ loud if I want it to be).

During workouts, I tend to sort through a lot of the BS in my head that happens during life.  I am able to get past a lot of the stupid stuff and just solve things, or make decisions, or get crystal clear on stuff.  I also am a lover of MOVEMENT and how my body feels, so workout time is my chance to see where the ick spots are, or where the stress is hiding, or why my hip flexor feels weird and my squats suddenly suck.

Anyways, back to the one year marker and my little realization.  I was MISSING ALL THOSE THINGS.  And no one said I couldn’t do them.  I was just choosing to feel guilty over prioritizing my own needs first sometimes.  I was also becoming resentful.  Of other people who just went about their life.  Of always feeling like I should be at home when I wasn’t working or whatever.  And no one made me feel this way, I sort of somehow just took this up on my own as I was learning how to be a mom.  Good moms put everyone else first, right?

I think I started accepting somewhere between the one year mark and 18 months that I needed to learn how to deal with the mom guilt.  I think mom guilt is probably here to stay, and will only amplify if another baby fish comes into the mix.  But I’m learning I don’t actually NEED to feel guilty for prioritizing my own needs.  My personal needs don’t need to compete with my families.  They do need to mesh with them, though.

Here is how I look at it, my workouts really are my ME time.  At the moment, my workouts are also training time for a very specific event and time frame.  That will drop off soon, and they will be right back to just me time.  I am needing my workouts and me time about three to five hours per week, depending on the week and the workload.  If I really analyze that, is that so unreasonable? Uh, no.  I’m spending three to five hours a week clearing my head space, getting rid of stress, getting stronger (carrying and rocking and snuggling toddlers is fun, but isn’t exactly physically easy), keeping me healthy, and keeping me in that happy balance between my needs and everyone else’s.  Coincidentally, when I get my me time, the rest of life just gets that much easier for me, and I tend to do it that much better.  I have more patience.  I also have more energy to have more fun helping my two year old “fly.”

I can absolutely freeze and do nothing and let mom guilt overpower me and only exist to perform for my family.  Or, I can choose to see it a little differently, and make ME better for my family and my life.  These past few months, I’ve started incorporating my workouts to the early morning hours, in order to not feel like I’m missing out on things at home.  This is cool (and sometimes lets me workout with a fun lifting buddy).  However, sometimes on a weekend I wake up with my family, we eat breakfast, and then I go off and do my thing.  It isn’t super strict.  In the future, that might change to evening  workouts, who knows.  Gotta be flexible with all this!

My me time activity might be different from your me time activity, but the principle is the same.  We need it.  And mom guilt might still happen, but we can learn how to approach it a little differently.  Being a mom is awesome, it REALLY is.  But it is also easy to get wrapped up in JUST being a mom (not that you are ever JUST a mom, but I hope you get my point).  And JUST existing to be a mom.  We can be a mom, and a wonderful one.  We can ALSO still be us.

– says the mom who is only two years in :)



Training Log: Feeling Strong + Eating Strong!

I almost forgot to write a training log this week!

Here is the Cliff’s Notes version of training for the week:

1)  My lifting buddy and I have been tracking how much weight we move each workout since mid-November.  On Sunday, we crossed the million pounds moved mark!  How exciting!!  We didn’t celebrate, we just decided to keep going :)  Wonder how long it will take us to reach TWO million pounds moved?!?!?!

2) I’m due for a visit with my coach this week.  And I can tell it’s time.  I’m feeling good.  My shoulders feel stable, the 16kg feels light for most lifts.  I’ve been doing pressing ladders with the 16kg for quite some time now, and was always stuck at four rungs per ladder.  NOPE, God smiled on me this week, and a magical unicorn appeared…..and I got two ladders with FIVE rungs per ladder.  BOOM.

3) Double front squats, of the HEAVY variety, will never be my friend.  They feel like cardio.  And the snatch test can take a hike, but I’ll keep doing it weekly til the RKC.

4) I’ve ADDED in barbell Jefferson deadlifts into my mix.  Three days a week I follow a “plan” of pretty much 6 sets of some odd reps at 80% of my sorta max deadlift (205) so 165.  Today was 6 sets of 5.  Do you know what this feels like?  It feels like cardio, that’s what it feels like.  OMG.  I haven’t felt sore from deadlifts in a coons age, and I think I might be tomorrow :)

5)  Eat hard.  Seriously, I’ve upped my food intake.  Don’t read that to mean I’m speed eating donuts.  I’m eating food – a good mix.  A ton of protein, quite a few veggies, and my carby goodness has been upped as well.  You know what else upped in direct correlation with that?  My ass kicking abilities in my workouts.  And I haven’t gained weight or inches, I’ve actually lost :)  Moral of this story…..don’t be afraid to eat!

Peace out!

PS – do you follow me on Facebook?  Check me out.  I’m a little boring, but whatevs.  Or Instagram @toughmuddette!  I have Twitter too, but I don’t use it because Twitter seems a little lame to me.

PPS – I’m writing a post about having mom guilt when it’s time for a workout and whatnot.  Are you a mom?  Do you have mom guilt?  Talk to me about your feelings!  I want to hear them!



Training Log: Got Lazy For A Second!

Yeah, I got a little lazy last week with my workouts.  I think I got two structured ones (per my training log) plus some walking plus some random circuit work.

I forced myself to get back to my normal on Sunday.  Don’t read that to say I shouldn’t have trained.  I SHOULD HAVE!  And DID!  But by that point, it was my HABIT to not workout.  Truth be told, Sundays session was “Day 1″ in my rotation – the one that takes the longest and has ass tons of volume in swings.  And snatches.  So to already be lazy PLUS to have to come back to that…..made me lazier :)  Ah well.  It went well.   So I’m back to the grind.  In a good way!  After that Sunday workout, things moved upwards!

(I’m staring down the face of a snatch test TOMORROW.  Ask me how I am feeling 5 minutes before that) :)

Anyhoo – there really isn’t fabulousness to report in the training arena.  It is put up or shut up time….I meet with my coach next Friday.  Hopefully the wheels are still on the bus by then.

Things I’m noticing….

I am ACTIVELY TRYING TO BUILD MUSCLE.  And I’m getting leaner without trying, yo.  And I’m eating.  Like it’s my job.  You CAN eat and STILL get lean.

TMI, but shaving your armpits when you are building muscle is ridiculous.  Armpits get “sunk in” and trying to reach every crevice is a full-time job.

I have been enjoying “Poptart Wednesdays.”  Generally, on Wednesdays before I train, or during, I enjoy a package of Maple & Brown Sugar Poptarts.  In the future this might become Donut Wednesdays.  But for right now,  Poptarts are amazing.  And generally Wednesdays are deadlift days, so it’s like a double bonus.  In the past, I’d somehow turn this into Poptarts = every time I train.  Not so these days, just Wednesdays.  Wednesdays seem pretty special with a Poptart.

I LOVE “dinner” for breakfast.  I’m over eggs this week.  Give me a pork chop, a side of chicken enchilada bake, or something jazzy like that.  BUT DON’T FORGET THE COFFEE.

My sleep is VITAL right now.  I’m also not noticing not having (how many negatives can I put in this sentence???) diet coke every now and again.  Actually, I’ve sort of cut my diet coke habit in half…..which means every OTHER day now.  And cutting off all caffeine before noon.  And limiting my coffee intake to two glorious mugs in the morning.  Because SLEEP.  Muscles don’t get big if they don’t recover.  And they recover from sleep.

How is YOUR training going?

Peace out!



No Assumptions, Please

I don’t know how to start this post.  So I’ll start it the same way I always do.

“Hi, my name is Amanda.  And I used to workout and eat to get smaller.”

I feel like I say that on repeat on this blog alot, and I was trying to find something a little catchier…..but meh, it just wasn’t coming to me.

Maybe it is become I am hyper-sensitive about this topic, or maybe it is because I see it everywhere with women.  And maybe it is because it is always flashed in our face in women’s fitness magazines…..

It seems it is trendy to always do a workout to get smaller.  Or eat to get smaller.

For some reason, we are always under the assumption that eating and working out is a means to get us into a smaller size, a smaller weight, a smaller personality, just smaller.

It is trendy to “tone” our trouble spots.  It is trendy to spot reduce.  It is trendy to whittle our middle.  It is trendy to drop jeans sizes in three weeks.

This has been in my face alot, because I recently gave myself a reality check about how my old habits and my new focus weren’t jiving.  And I notice this in a lot of women around me.  And a lot of women online.  And just within the mindset of a lot of women, and how we approach things.

We don’t need to be small.  Or less.  Or little.  If we don’t want to.  And we also don’t need to make that assumption.  Or have that assumption made about us.

Think about why you exercise.  Or why you feed your body.  I’m thinking about why I do.  At this point in the game, at least for me……is that it has absolutely NOTHING to do with the size of my body.

It does, however, have EVERYTHING to do with the mastery of the skillset I’m practicing.  And owning movements.  And building strength within those movements and skills.  And my eating has to match that goal of building.  And my quality of life should absolutely not go down the tubes because of how I eat or move.  In fact, moving and eating should only ENHANCE it.  You know, BIG.  Be big in personality, live big, get big skills.  And muscles.

So, maybe the way you eat and the way you workout DOES have something to do with changing your physique.  That is TOTALLY COOL!  Maybe you like to eat well and workout because those two tools are key to having you perform well at your job.  Maybe you do these things to help you manage stress.  Maybe you do these things because you are prioritizing yourself and this concept it new and you are learning as you go.

The point is…..we don’t need to make assumptions of WHY we do things.  Or have assumptions made about us.  Or make assumptions about others.  You know what that means…..ASSUME is just making an A$$-out-of-U-and-ME.

If we constantly assume that we must workout to get smaller, or assume that’s why our neighbor is working out or assume our neighbor SHOULD workout to get smaller, well….that’s just sort of A$$-y don’t you think?

No assumptions.

If you want to build your skills, work on BUILDING YOUR SKILLS.

If you want to trim down a bit, work at that.

If you want to get crazy strong, get to working.

If you want 30-60 minutes a few times a week as “you” time, take it and do it up.

Don’t assume.  Don’t focus on “small” if that isn’t what you are truly after.

It is easy to pigeon-hole yourself in the food or fitness game.  Try not to put limits on your journey.  Allow yourself room to grow – everything from your muscles, to your skills, to your confidence, to your self-esteem, to your character.  I know plenty of people who started out as runners and became powerhouses in the weight lifting game.  On the flip side, I know some powerhouse weight lifters who now really enjoy running.  And, I know a few peeps who love to workout at home with a DVD and randomly mix in a group class here and there.  NO PIGEON-HOLING!  No limits!  You don’t JUST have to be a runner.  Or JUST have to be a lifter.  Or JUST workout with kettlebells.  You know?

No assumptions.

PS – At the time I was finishing up this post, I noticed that one of my favorite chefs – Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman) had just posted about motivation and adding walking into her daily routine for a year.  THIS IS SUPER COOL because this woman  added something, from a starting point of changing her physical appearance a bit, and moved on to realize this routine helped get her “senses in order.”  I think that is SO COOL.  She made ONE CHANGE and worked at it consistently for a year, and realized it maybe wasn’t about changing her body as much as it was changing her life.

PPS – If you don’t follow her recipes, you maybe should.  Many of them are very awesome and protein rich….you know, perfect hungry weightlifter food.  I check out her recipes from time to time and sort of change them a hair if necessary to fit my own energy needs.  Her drip beef recipe is amazing as a sandwich (of course), or……shredded up over carrots and potatoes and onion.  Or over a salad.  Or eaten with eggs in the morning for breakfast.




Training Log: Kickin’ It

Hey all!

So, let’s talk training, shall we?

It was a very “average” good working week this past week.

Most weeks go by, and I don’t know about you…..I don’t remember five minutes ago, so going through the past weeks workouts tends to throw me for a loop.  Except, I keep a handy dandy little training notebook that tells me how I did.  So I flip through it each week to remind myself what I’m doing (or not doing).  It’s fun to go back to a month or two or three ago and look what I was doing then, and how far I’ve come.

Here's my chicken scratch training journal!
Here’s my chicken scratch training journal!

Seriously, here’s my  big thing.  The snatch test.  I do it….almost weekly.  About three days before I have to do it, I start to freak out about it (even though I’ve done about 6 of them now).  I have no clue why……it just gets in my head.  Really, the concept is simple.  Bang out 100 snatches in five minutes.  For me, I do 10 per arm on the minute.  BUT…’s the constant NON-REST that I go through.  It gives me that panicky feeling because I “HAVE” to do it.  Oh well.  I’m just going to keep doing it, maybe that icky feeling will go away.  Maybe not.  I really am looking forward to training AFTER the RKC, when I no longer have to practice this snatch test for awhile :)

Aside from that, everything is getting easier.  Weights are feeling lighter.  Well, most days anyway.  I do like to crab about them, though.  I am eating food like a boss (and, surprisingly, my body is changing).

And, also, I feel like I should share the “real life” application of my training week with you (or rather, just the last few days).  I’ve taken a few days off from “my normal” and “the plan.”  I’ve been hitting it hard.  On Tuesday night, I went to bed…thinking I was coming down with something and sorta felt icky on Wednesday.  Not bad, just not good.  We have had colds and such at our house so I’m sure I had the start of that.  I had two choices.  I could either A) continue on with my training plan no matter what, and probably do damage in the sickness recovery department or B) listen to my body and back the eff off.  I chose B.  Also, in those days – life happened.  I had a super busy Wednesday.  My daughter turned 2 on Thursday and we had an awesome family day.  Friday was sorta busy but sorta “rest.”  Saturday was fun out to lunch with family.  Don’t worry.  I’m now getting itchy to move again, and kill the bells.

My point here is this – a few days off never hurt anyone.  And, if you find yourself constantly feeling like you are coming down with something, or just not recovering, or if you have lost your exercise mojo when you normally freaking love it…..step away for a bit or just do something completely different.  Maybe just walk for a few days, or do yoga if that isn’t your norm.  Maybe clock in some handstands if you want and call it good.  Or, maybe….hole up and read books for a few days and sit on your ass alot.  You don’t owe anyone an excuse as to why you decided it was best for you to take a few rest days if you need them, you know?  There isn’t any issues with taking a few days as rest and recovery after killing it for awhile.  Now, if I take this rest and recovery every other week……..wellllllllll, then I expect you all to apply tough love to me, you know? :)

Favorites this past week-ish:

-Adding rice to salads to bulk them up

-Epsom salt baths (I don’t think this will ever NOT be a favorite)

-Bananas.  I am OBSESSED with bananas, or “bo-bo’s” as Emma calls them

-My three year old Target C9 premium leggings.  They are so soft!



Bodies Are NOT Seasonal

I’ve been reading the following phrase EVERYWHERE lately:

“Summer bodies are made in the winter.”

Seriously, if I see it/hear it/read it again, I might just lose it.

The slogan is always a reminder from the Big Fitness & Diet Industry that summer is coming, and “hey you….you’ve been comfortable in your home and without your workouts for far too long over winter, you lazy slug.”  To me, it implies that my winter body sucks.  And that I need to work extra hard for my summer body.  Because my winter body isn’t good enough.

Seriously, no way.  No way is there a reason for me, or ANYONE, to think that right now, right this second, regardless of where we stand in our fitness journey or non-fitness journey, to feel like our body RIGHT NOW is not good enough for summer.  Or winter.  Or friggin’ spring or fall.

Bodies aren’t seasonal.

photo 17

They aren’t.

You have your body year round.  You wake up with it every morning.  It carries you through your work day.  It helps you make dinner each night for your family.  It goes to bed with you every night.  And yet….we have this underlying message out there that this body isn’t good enough.

You guys, this is a problem.  A really big one.

All around me, and I’m sure you can see this too, there are women (and men!  and little kids!) who are absolutely frantic to change something about their body.  They can stare in disgust in a mirror and pinch and poke and compare to Suzy Sixpack who has 2.5 wonderful children and a husband in Suburbia Somewhere with a fabulous life.  There has GOT to be something wrong with this body because it doesn’t look like HERS.

We have this message IN OUR FACE every day, whether it be through photoshopped pictures in a magazine/social media, in glossy magazines where bright red text reads “21 Days To A Thinner You” or when we critique or gossip about someones appearance, or our own.  

You guys.  Bodies AREN’T seasonal.  But life IS.

Life is seasonal.  At this very second, I can think of at least a handful of people in my life who are busy caring for a sick loved one.  They are busy.  And right now, even though they WANT to focus on themselves, their fitness journey, and even their eating habits, they just have a slightly different focus right now.  A different priority, and that’s absolutely okay.  On the opposite end of the spectrum, I know at least another handful of people in my life that DON’T have much in the stress department these days, and they are nailing their workouts and working on their nutrition habits and enjoying life a bit more.  Neither of these examples is better or worse than the other.  They are just what is, different seasons in life.  This is NORMAL. And in both examples, their winter bodies are absolutely just awesome the way they are.  And their spring bodies will be great too, whatever life season they are in then.  So will their summer bodies.  And fall bodies.

Body love and body acceptance doesn’t mean that everything is rosy all the time, and that not working out is the right answer, or that working out seven days a week is the right answer, or that meals of Cheetos and cupcakes should be enjoyed everyday, or chicken and broccoli for six evenly spaced meals everyday is perfection.

Body love and body acceptance means that right now, you acknowledge where you are.  And you ACCEPT that.  And you love yourself, and your body – whether it has lumps, bumps, six packs, scars, stretch marks or WHATEVER, right now.

Body love and body acceptance means that each day, you can put your efforts and your energy towards doing YOUR best, whichever life season you are in right now.  Body love and body acceptance means that you can look in the mirror without fear and without poking and prodding in disgust.  Body love and body acceptance means that you can choose to give compliments to people freely, without feeling envious, and without making a snarky remark behind the back or engage in gossip.

Because right now, right here, you choose to stop the madness and love and accept YOU.  YOUR body.  YOUR life. YOUR story.

We have a lot of life left to live.  We have many different life seasons ahead of us as well.  Some of them might be building strength seasons.  Some might be resting seasons.  Some might be new baby seasons.  Some might be spent caring for loved ones.  Some might be spent remembering.  All of those seasons are important for us to go through.  And none of them have anything to do with what our body SHOULD or SHOULDN’T look like.

Love and respect your body.  Love and respect yourself.  Imagine what might happen if we all did?




Training Log: Deadlifts Are In!

Oh, you know.  I’m just kickin’ it in the training department.

Seriously, there was nothing special about my last week of training.  It was very much just “keep plugging along and such.”

Truth be told, I’ve been missing my deadlifts.  I do deadlifts sometimes.  About twice a week.  As a way to teach my body tension for other lifts.  So not, DEADLIFTS, like pulling heavy things, mostly just one or two 28kg bells, for a few reps, focusing on isometric tension before swings and strength days.  I was really kind of salivating for some deadlifts.

And so, I’ve ADDED them back in.  Not to DEADLIFT all the DEADLIFTS.  Mostly just to keep them in because I love them.  I mean, I do enough posterior chain work, believe you me.  Swings upon swings and other ballistics, and other lifts, and I’ve got plenty.  And while I like those things, I feel that my soul needs a bit more iron in her life.  And so, I’m adding them back in once or twice per week.  The DEADLIFT kind.  Not the warm-up kind.  And they shall stay for as long as they meet two requirements 1) they remain FUN and make me feel good and 2) they still allow me to recover properly and train my RKC program the way I mean to train it and not become the focus of my training.

This morning, I wanted to see “where I stood” with deadlifts.  I mean, everything else in my program is there already.  So why not?  I wanted to see my “sort of” max.  The max I was comfortable with maxing, and not an ALL TIME pull.  Because I got no business doing ALL TIME pulls right now – it isn’t the focus of my training, and that shit won’t let me recover.  So I “sorta maxed.”  I dig Jefferson’s right now so I warmed up with 115 for a few, and then moved right to 135 for one per side, 175 for one per side, and finished up at 205 per side.  For the record…..I left 205 on the bar for the rest of my training session today.  Because it went up very easy even though it was heavier than what I’ve lifted for awhile.  I was going to come back and throw another 10 on if the rest of my workout went swimmingly and I had the energy.  I went through my workout and had the energy…..but I also need the energy TOMORROW to train again.  So I opted out of more weight.  You see, the thing about training……the BIG KEY… that it must be repeatable or game over, you know?

Here is my 205 lift.  Apparently today, after a huge azz mug of coffee and a poptart as my pre-workout…..I needed to yell during my pull to get the weight up.  I’m not a yeller.  I mostly don’t even grunt when lifting.  Sometimes I do cuss, though.  So today was odd.  Maybe I will make yelling a thing.

Other biggies in my training……

– Push-ups are good.  I mean, I’ve met the threshold of three chest to floor that I need.  I will continue to practice these, of course and work for more reps because push-ups are cool.  But testing wise, I’m good.

– Snatch test is good.  I mean, it still sucks the big one.  And I do 10 reps per side on the minute and rest the remainder of the minute.  Maybe I will try to go all the way through sometime without putting the bell down.  But I don’t get extra credit or a different certification for doing that….and I hate the snatch test already.  So why do more?

– My “meh” weeks?  Are gone now.  I upped my protein.  And I actually upped my food intake on training days a little more too.  I think I get in a rut of not eating enough sometimes even if I don’t mean to.  Life gets busy and it just happens.  But I can tell that those two things (combined with SLEEP) have helped.  I have fire in the belly to train again.  This one I will monitor. (side note – if there was a requirement for eating for this RKC cert…..I would be nailing it right now.  Must consider this in the future – make a certification for people to eat the food!)

Things I am in love with this week:

– Chili Cheese Fries – my chili recipe over baked potato fries and cheese sprinkled over the top

– Epsom salt baths

– Rolling tennis balls under my feet (OMG….feels so good)

Peace out, homies!


Originally this was my journey to Tough Mudder…now it's my record of all things fitness and health!


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