getting fit and taking gains

Monthly Archives: April 2013

There are certain things in life that I try to understand but even as I say aloud, “oh yeah, ok, I get it,” inside I’m shaking my head and shrugging my shoulders in confusion. Deep fried Twinkies: isn’t that like breading bread? Or pants around your knees: could you actually run from the cops in those? And speaking of, what’s with running?! Why the heck do people do that?!?

I’m not a runner. For a long time I wanted to be a runner because (for some bizarre reason) I idolized them. I guess it’s because our culture puts runners on a pedestal. You don’t see many pictures of weightlifters in athletic magazines, do you? Or martial artists? Or even Crossfitters? Mostly runners and yogis. So I tried running for a couple months and did Couch to 5K. It was a good program and it did wonders for my dog! In fact it’s now my go-to conditioning program for show dogs, but for me it was uber lame. I saw almost no change in my physique and it was incredibly boring. Sure, I probably had a healthier heart and lungs. Don’t care, I hate running. I quickly got over my starstruck-ness of runners and moved on to envying people like Jenny Labaw.

On the other hand, however, I want to be a better Crossfitter. As a result I will have to do some form of cardio, at some point. *exaggerated sigh* At the Games they’ve done some runs, swims, and rowing. I have to be able to do that stuff, which means I can’t just lift and do MetCons all the time. I have to get in some 5k runs, rowing, and maybe even swimming or cycling. Well, not cycling. The idea of riding a bike in a crowded area (read: any moving object within 30 yards) is enough to make me pat the bike seat gingerly and step away. Given how pricey rowing machines and swimming pools are I’ll probably just start up C25K again since then I can condition Wally, too. The little bugger needs muscle to keep him winning Breed and gaiting properly. Oops, just nerded out there, sorry!

Running. A necessary evil.


Lulu pants

I have an addiction to Lululemon pants. Currently I have four pairs, which seems like at least one too few. I mean, I should at least have one pair for each day of the week, right? I only workout four days a week but if I only wear the same four pants, what will people think? I need to meet the expectations of my fans! Ok, so I don’t have any fans. But I have standards of awesomeness to meet, dammit!

The above pants are my favorite pair. Unfortunately I don’t have any shirts that really go with these pants, so I suppose that means I need to do some shopping. Oh darn. More workout clothes to buy. Guess my checkbook will be disappointed but my closet will be happy!

shitty food

What more can be said? I know precisely how hard it is to eat healthy, so believe me when I say I understand. But unless you’ve been blessed with a crazy metabolism and ridiculous genes, you can’t eat crap and have a hot body. So join the rest of us who say “thanks, but no thanks” to fast food and weaned ourselves off of grains. Eventually you don’t know any other way. :)

13.3 was the one with 150 wall balls, right? I think so. 13.3 made my knee quite unhappy. I did all 150 wall balls (ahem, with 8lb) and even did 6 double unders (which is amazing since I’d never successfully done even one before that!), and then for 2 weeks my right knee was in a hate-hate relationship with me. This wasn’t entirely surprising since I already have some knee issues, but it was painful and frustrating. I went to the chiro and he worked his magical magic, making it feel a lot better. Unfortunately it was a two-magic-visits kind of issue, so two chiro visits, some foam rolling, a few Epsom bathes, and a while lot of icing, my knee is feeling friendly. Something else my chiro told me was that the knee issue was actually originating from my hip and ITB. Hmmmm…

A couple weeks later I did 130 pushups for one of the Girls, which has left me struggling with left shoulder issues to this day. I’ve heated, applied minty patches (Salonpas), foam rolled, lacrosse balled, and then finally got a massage. My friend Tisha is an amazing massage therapist and after an hour of bliss she told me that my real problem is not my shoulder, but my pecs. Apparently my boob muscles are ridiculously tight and pulling my shoulders forward, in addition to regular tightness in the shoulders, back, and arms. Hmmmm….

It both fascinates and annoys me that one body part can cause a chain reaction that presents in another body part. You think it’s your knee but, surprise! It’s your hip, sucka! To me this means I need to take a holistic approach to fitness and recovery. That means full body stretching, foam rolling, chiro, and massage; lots of technique focus; supplements like fish oil, ZMA, and Zyflamend; and looking into things like knee sleeves. Finally, it means making sure to be mindful of my entire body rather than focusing on the problem area. And that will keep me trucking along towards my goals.


Apparently I workout too hard, too often. I can’t wrap my head around this, actually, but it has been said by those who would know. Plus I’m way too competitive and strong-willed to admit it to myself. Which is why I have this problem!

Lately it seems like everything is broken. It all started with my right knee. I did one meeellion wall balls (ok, 150 at 8lb) for 13.3 and then for two weeks my knee was crap. Then I did something…oh yeah: 130 pushups a couple weeks ago and now my left shoulder is crap (but my right knee is fine, so ha!). Needless to say this rains on my parade and slows my roll. How am I supposed to be a total badass when I’m always dealing with injuries?!

So I listened to my people. And my body. I’m going to spend more time rolling and stretching. I’ll also spend time at home practicing lifting technique. And I’ll stop pushing myself to get the same scores and weights as others in the box. I’ve gotten so used to PR’ing every lift that I’m pushing myself beyond my skill level. And when my form deteriorates I’m putting myself at risk for injury.

So yeah. Bummer face. But I’d rather have a long-term future than short-term ego boosts.


Last Friday I did my first real handstand, with photographic proof above. There are certain movements in Crossfit that intimidate the crap out of me, movements that make me hesitate and whine a little. I’ll even ask them to go over the mechanics of it just in case they’ll run out of time and I won’t have to do it. But then somebody (usually a coach or my friend Tisha) calls me on my bullshit and tells me to stop being such a pussy and just do it already. So I do it. And I don’t die!

So far there have been two things that left me quaking in my Mizuno’s, and two things I’ve conquered: handstands and box jumps. The first time I did box jumps I was certain I would fall on my face and lose all my teeth or break my shin or something equally ridiculous. Lo and behold, none of those things happened! And when I did my first handstand I did not, in fact, break my neck or collapse on the floor in shame. These little wins have instilled just that much more confidence, making it easier for me to try new things. Like pull-ups. Didn’t think I could do those (no irrational fears, just doubting my ability), but I did TWO!! Unassisted body weight pull ups. Winning!

abs of steel

So hey, I’m getting abs. I mean, I’m getting ABS. This has happened to me approximately never. And I don’t mean that my stomach fat has reshaped itself into the form of abs (been there, done that), I mean that I can feel and start to see a few bumps coming in! O.o  A few days ago I mentioned this to one of my coaches and he scrutinized my belly for a moment before nodding and saying “yep, you’ll have a 2-pack or even a 4-pack pretty soon.” This pleases me.

It’s not like having abs has always been a goal of mine, it’s just something I’ve never thought I would possess. My entire life I’ve looked at pix of shredded women and thought “how the heck do they do that?” Now I realize that for women being shredded is usually not healthy, so I’ve recalibrated my mental image to want something like Jenny Labaw abs. Even that isn’t really a goal, but still. If I suddenly have any kind of pack going on in my stomach region I’ll be sending pix to everyone because how about that shit? ABS!