Sunday, December 29, 2013

2014.....The Voyage of Discovery

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." -Marcel Proust

Though I'm not a huge blogger I'm happy to have tracked my last year in workouts (more or less) a few months in between posts.... I started this blog with my 2013 resolution: "Say Yes to new things and people"....Then, I walked into a gym full of strangers to start a transformation challenge :)
I had a year of trying new things mixed with a year of life struggles and my "fit fam" (as I like to call them) have helped to keep me grounded and motivated wether they know it or not... Walking into my gym each day kept me focused on something positive when I had a lot of negative things going on in my head. Though I tell my strength coach, John how thankful I am for his passion and enthusiasm to make me strong. He'll probably never know just how much he's helped me stay focused. Along this fitness journey I have made some great friends that make me feel good, are positive and fun to be around.... Also, they're pretty damn strong... ;)
To this day, those 45 minute bootcamps still kick my butt and make me sore... In fact I'm sore right now. Though I am definitely stronger, I still push myself everytime. I blogged the last few times about switching over to strength training, doing barbell lifts twice a week. And somehow I've become "a lifter of heavy shit" in just 6 months... My own strength surprises me sometimes... I still really enjoy it and in 2014 I am training for a lifting meet.... Yes, really.... It's a private gym meet but my lifting goals seem outrageous and scary. My coach seems to think I am completely capable of dead lifting 275 pounds... Stay tuned, I'll be tracking my 2-1/2 months of training... It's going to take a lot of focus and determination and I'm ready! Thanks again to my family for all your support! XO

Here's to a year of discovery. Happy 2014!!

Monday, September 30, 2013

"Go to your f***ing crazy place"

These are the words of wisdom coach, John gave me tonight for when I deadlift crazy amounts of weight in the future. I have to "mentally find my crazy place. Get angry! Say the F word." See... now this is where lifting with huge dudes is just weird... Find my crazy place...?

This all came up when my lifting buddy, Fiona and I were talking to him about an October goal. We're all being encouraged to write down an October goal in my gym... John gave us a goal of deadlifting 215lbs by the end of the month. Tonight we were supposed to do 195lbs for 1 rep.... it turned into a 200lb PR!!

I've attached two videos because I want my family to see me do what I'm doing, I'm not quite sure you know exactly what I've gotten myself into... Before you watch this I must point out...
  • I had never in my LIFE lifted this much weight, until tonight.
  • The motivation and excitement from my coach and my lifting peers make an incredible difference in my confidence to lift such ridiculous weight (as you can hear in the background).
  •  I have also never seen myself lift (there are no mirrors in the gym) and I've watched this several times and can't stop smiling... It was such a huge accomplishment after starting 3 months ago lifting just 125lbs...
Here it is - - me deadlifting.... Dad, I can lift you off the ground, I think...

1st video is 195lbs, John thought this looked too easy and you can hear his "whoa" in the background... haha!

So he thought I should go for 200lbs.... : ))

Thursday, September 19, 2013

So This Happened...

Aside from the fact I haven't written on this thing for like....6 months. I wanted to document a few amazing feats that happened tonight.

First accomplishment: I started a 12 week strength training program at my gym back in July. Today was the LAST day of that program. I've seen some pretty awesome results physically and on paper! The program was derived from Mark Ripetoes Starting Strength. My trainer/coach is certified under his lifting standards (which I really don't want to explain at the moment :) Maybe I'll "blog" about it in a few days. It's basically a very simple technique in barbell training. I go twice a week and do squats and bench press one day and overhead press and deadlift the next.
Just to break it down.... this is how I started and ended my program....

Week 1
Squat: 105lbs
Bench Press: 75lbs
Overhead Press: 55 lbs
Deadlift: 125lbs

Week 12
Squat: 133lbs
Bench Press: 82lbs
Overhead Press: 64lbs
Deadlift: 180lbs !!

This is so crazy to me. One, because I never thought I'd be able to squat a small adult or deadlift a grown man (figuratively speaking :) My trainer has given me some really great coaching and advice and he's damn proud of me! It makes me feel great to have committed to something that was new and foreign to me which has given me physical strength I've probably never had, not even as a gymnast... My trainer told me tonight I was his "poster child example" for women who don't lift because they think they'll get big and bulky. I really have opinions on this but won't get into it... I mean I do worry sometimes that I will look way too muscular, but it hasn't happened, I won't let it : ) I'm just getting stronger... which leads me to my next accomplishment.

Second accomplishment: This happened tonight, it was a celebration in disguise for the completion of my 12 week program and totally unexpected....
I want to do a body weight pull-up, who doesn't, right?! Well, my trainer is switching my lifting program up and as we were talking about goals, I told him... "My goal before this year is over... to do a pull-up!" He says,"You can do one now! Go do it!" I jumped up and tried one and did it with no struggle. It honestly surprised the SH!T out of me.... I have been wanting to do that for soooo long!

On a side note...This week has marked 2 years since Dave passed away, I've been thinking of him often and I really felt him with me tonight. Now that I think about it... that pull-up was way too easy. I think he just may have been there spotting me.... ; ) XO

Sunday, March 10, 2013


Been going to Riley Athletics for just about 8 weeks now! When I did my Saturday boot camp yesterday I could tell for the first time there was a change in my strength. Things are getting easier and I don't feel like ima throw up after my workouts. YESSSSSSS.

I have one week left in this transformation challenge, I'll weigh-in at the end of the week and I'll be posting pics of BEFORE and NOW. Pretty excited for this.... Then we all get to celebrate!! Thanks to my friends and family who have encouraged and listened to my stories of this transformation, I feel the love and support! I've decided to keep on going to RA two times a week. Not only are the workouts awesome but the coaches and people are the BEST.....

I really enjoyed this boot camp yesterday....1 leg workouts are pretty awesome for your balance and core! I highly recommend it....

35 sec. on / 15 sec. off - 4x each

1: TRX 1 leg squat to row (switch for next round - 2 times each leg).

2: 1 arm dumbbell plank to row (do this plank on a bench, legs back far enough that your back is flat switch for next round - 2 times each arm).

3: Squat with heavier dumbbells to clean motion (heavier weights for this)

4: Half push-up, down. Full push-up, down - - repeat. Great alternative to regular pushups!

5: Cable pull to squat motion

6: rope slam one leg

7: med ball cross over

8: back lunge kettle bell swap (swap the kettle bell in the lunge position) its a good one!

Sled push 6 lengths of the gym - killer....

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

"The most powerful force on earth is the human soul on fire."

ONE week till final weigh-in !!! I really have no intention of stopping what I've been doing though. Except for eating a cookie or drinking wine once in a while or even an m&m or two..... I actually enjoy the way I'm eating and my workouts. Why stop.... : )

I did meal plan for this week (in more detail than I ever have) and I'm finding I have a ton of variety for my meals. I've never really had so much food in my fridge before!..... It's a lot of work to make all this crap though. I'm not really a great cook either but I'm learning. Like, don't put chopped up bay leaves in your soup in place of basil leaves......EW! - - that was a big fail....

My boot camp workout tonight (below) also included one of my trainers in my face bugging me.... the other one pushing me to my limit. Gotta have that push once in a while, I suppose.

40 sec 4x
1A - mountain climbers
1B - landline torso rotation (not sure if regular gyms have this thing)....
1C - dumbell row (in a squat position)
1D - kettle bell split plank

2A - rope slam / jump squat  NO THANKS
2B - TRX plank hold
2C - dumbell clean to jump (technique is involved with this one)
2D - pull ups

Sunday, March 3, 2013


Just in case you ever wondered where my blog title came from..... I saw this stop motion animated video a while back and loved it! The music, story and animation is so incredible and beautiful. Enjoy....

Saturday, March 2, 2013

I CAN & I WILL....

I'm doing an experiment for the last two weeks of this Transformation Challenge!!.... It's something I've never done so strictly before and that's writing down EVERY meal and snack I'm eating from now till the end. One week at a time though.... So Mon. 4th - 10th I'm planning everything, getting recipes, making a grocery list and looking at Clean Eating Meal Plans to give me all sorts of ideas!

Next challenge, I'm going to add running 3-4 miles at least two times each week. This will be interesting with the workout schedule I already have but I feel, adding in this cardio will help get those last 5 pounds off by my next weigh-in....

Final challenge! Fish Oil supplements. I've been given a specific one to take (not all are created equal) apparently. I'm wondering if this will help me with my protein, stay tuned....

I'll check back in on Wednesday the 6th after my Bootcamp workout : ) and let you know how I'm doing mentally and physically wise - - I know I'll be curious. It's a challenge to change life routines, I know I've done a few since this transformation and it's been awesome!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

No Sleep Till Brooklyn!! ....It's DAY 32

I'm half-way with my Transformation Challenge!! I was weighed this morning before class and I've lost 5 lbs. My body fat is not moving, hahaha : / My trainer did sit down with me and explain how it can vary depending on the time of day. What really matters though is what I notice about my body and I feel that I'm loosing inches and getting definition for sure!! My body fat % isn't really that high, surprisingly....

Saturday Boot Camps are my favorite.... 1: I'm forced to get outta BED 2: The playlist at the Gym is killer!! - - Hence the Beastie Boys blog title : ) 3: Everyone is in good spirits and motivating.

40sec. 4x
Group A:
  • Kettle Bell side lunges
  • Hill Sprint w/ med ball (no thanks)
  • Alternate rope slam
Group B:
  • Lunge hops holding the TRX
  • Bus Driver weight rotation (holding a 10 lb weight in front of you and steering like a wheel)
  • Landline row (ask me if you wanna try this, too long to explain)
Group C:
  • Push up, knee tuck (using the slide board)
  • Cable pull side lunge
  •  Side hop lung with med ball
If that wasn't enough.... Riley Athletics is so conveniently located on a steep incline. So our "finisher" -- Sprint up, walk down, sprint up, walk down, sprint up BACKWARDS, walk down....repeat. If you ever wonder what would be a good butt workout.... run up a hill backwards....

BEST workout song...circa 1986 baby!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

My Workout Music (right now)

We're making our own playlists to "bleed, sweat and cry to".....for Boot Camp. Here's my playlist, although - - I like to workout to these songs OR mostly dance to them. Not sure about bleeding or crying to them....

Notorious B.I.G. - Hypnotize
Gotye - Somebody That I Used To Know
Ratatat - Loud Pipes
White Stripes - Seven Nation Army
Alex Clare - Too Close
Skrillex - Breakin' A Sweat
The XX - Islands
50 Cent, Eminem, Adam Levine - My Life
The Black Keys - Howlin' For You
JayZ, Kanye West - No Church In The Wild

Saturday, February 9, 2013

"Empower Your Mind... and Your Mind Will Transform Your Body."

I got weighed today with the crazy scale that sends a surge of electricity through your body..... Yeah, you heard me. Probably the most expensive scale in the world - - but the most reliable : ) I lost three pounds since Jan. 22nd and my fat percentage is the same. Ryan (my coach) says I'm on track and everyone's body is different (obviously). According to him, I don't have much weight to lose and my goal is to get toned anyway. I will probably lose about 10 lbs after this is all over at the rate I'm going which is my end goal.

I'm okay with this but my next motivation is to step up my workout game, I mean these boot camps are awesome and I'm seeing some toning results after 2 weeks but it's a challenge for me to workout doing other things. I did good this week - - boot camp twice and gym twice. I want to add a run in on Sunday's and I think I'll be surprised at my endurance to run 3 miles. I should be doing this routine from here on out. It's HARD... But the more and more I start to change my routine into this it gets easier : )

Boot Camp Today:
35 sec. / 4x
1A - Pull Ups
1B - Kettle Bell Swing

2A - Cable Push
2B - Alt. Rope Slam

3A - Split Squat - Med. Ball Slam
3B-  Push Up / Weight Slide to Crunch (I'll show anyone who wants to try this, it's HARD).

4A - Bench Row
4B - Low Jump Squats

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

JOHN'S [workout till you puke] BOOTCAMP

IT'S DAY 15:
Our explanation for boot camp tonight was "I want you to workout harder than you ever have before, EVER, EVER before." Oh, great. Well, let me just say this. Doing stations for 30 minutes will be one of the hardest things you EVER do. And if you want to loose weight, do this a couple times a week.... all these in one form/another at home. Holla!

30 Min. / 6 rounds (most don't make it to 6, i made it to 5....crawling)
  • Triceps on bench 10x
  • TRX Bicep Curl  10x
  • Jump Rope  50x
  • Mtn. Climbers 50x
  • Pull ups TRX/Bar 10x
  • Burpees  10x
  • Push ups 10x
  • Split Squat (each leg) 10x
  • Prisoner Jump Squat 10x
 I mostly just crawled out of the gym tonight and into my car.....

Monday, February 4, 2013

It's DAY 13 of Transforming into something....

When I put my mind to it I have a lot of control over food temptation! Yeah, me. This weekend I was put to the test, going out to eat with my family. No bread, No fries, 1 bite of cheesecake....etc. This Transformation Challenge has me really thinking about what I eat. I'm learning about how important protein is while building muscle. I am urged to eat 22 gm of protein with each meal! I rarely eat meat and little fish, so last week I ate a lot of egg whites... My trainer said I'm still not eating enough. This week, I'm including ground turkey and protein powder. I've also found how helpful it is to drink a protein shake after an intense workout. All in all, I'm proud of my eating habits. I have my first weigh-in this Wednesday - - this will be the test...

I've found this book very helpful for good clean eating habits: (thanks LAR for letting me borrow).

I accomplished (2) intense bootcamps last week and (1) Barre class. This week I'm going to try a hip-hop class, I've always wanted to do it - - another "Trying New Things" to write down : )


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Team Transformation Challenge

Lauren and I discovered Riley Athletics a while back. Thanks to her, we got to try out "Boot Camp" classes for a free month! Most of the workouts are 30-45 minutes of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). I had never tried this type of exercise before but I really love it! In fact, I've decided to join the 8 week Transformation Challenge, my first "trying new things" step!

In this 8 weeks of transformation I'm going to blog about my workouts, nutrition, my goals, what I'm learning, etc. and hopefully it will be beneficial for anyone who needs motivation or new workout routines : )

I've been really focusing on drinking a lot of water, we are supposed to be drinking 20-32 oz. of water with each meal. This is crazy to me, I have a hard time drinking water for some reason but I'm really trying. I've also been eating a lot of "whole" foods and no processed food these past few days.

30 min. / 15 seconds at each station / 4x

1A - Split squat (right leg) w/dumbbells
1B - Split squat (left leg) w/ dumbbells

2A - Cable reach row
2B - Rope wave (this is HARD)

3A - Alt. grip pull-up
3B - Switch back mountain climbers

4A - Kettle bell jump squat
4B - Mini band shuffle

Sled push 8x - - This makes me wanna throw up....

Say YES...

New Year's resolutions are a little clique to me so I like to think of something less obvious when I start a new year. Like for 2013, I chose an inspirational saying I think fits me perfectly. With this I can cover a lot of ground....