getting fit and taking gains

Monthly Archives: April 2015

Among my friends I have a reputation for being the fitness nut, not because I’m the only one who works out but because I’m the only one who takes it so seriously. Overall we’re a group of fit, healthy people but I’m the only one who eats super clean and who makes fitness the foundation for my lifestyle and choices. Sometimes they do ask me for advice and I’ll tell them what I do, with the caveat “you need to do what works best for you.”

Every body is different, which requires a good amount of self-awareness and self-education to not only dial in your fitness but to keep yourself uninjured and healthy. How should you eat? Well, I eat a version of Paleo that verges on ketogenic, but maybe you would do better with more carbs. What does your body tell you? I craved peanut butter for a month and, I kid you not, ate multiple jars of it before I realized my body was telling me I need more salt. Now I salt everything more and am going to go back on electrolytes; amazingly peanut butter also tastes different now, it’s no longer overwhelmingly delicious and leaving me wanting more. Maybe you’re craving carbs because your body isn’t getting enough of them. Listen to your body!

Should you do a particular movement in your workout? Sure, just be mindful of your body. Pain is not weakness leaving the body, it’s a sign that you might be doing something wrong. Know the difference between discomfort and pain. And if you have a known issue, be willing to scale and modify! My arms are a million times better than they were two years ago, but I still need to be mindful when I do arm intensive workouts. If things start to feel really tight at the insertion points of the muscles I know it’s time to stop or modify. Push ups are no longer my Waterloo but I do still keep a firm mental eye on my arms as I do them.

You are your own best advocate, so be smart! Listen to your body and educate yourself before you take someone’s word for it. Even professionals are wrong or narrow-minded sometimes.

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Hammer Time (CFJ) — how to swing a sledge hammer; I suspect I’ll be adding a sledge hammer and tractor tire to my garage gym

Ironman in Waterworld (CFJ) — hydration for the athlete, myths and realities

Comfortable Being Uncomfortable (CF Invictus) — how far should you push yourself? And how far is too far? Thoughts on intensity.

How Getting a Six Pack Changes Your Life (And How It Doesn’t) (Lifehacker) — the thing about a six pack is that 99% of the time only you know you have one; it’s not visible to the rest of the world. I’ve worked hard to achieve this goal, and will admit that in the back of my head I thought somehow life would change once I achieved it. Only your confidence in yourself will really change!


I love food. I love cooking it (especially for other people) and of course I love eating it. Here are a few of my favorites!

Because some of us have allergies…egg substitutes — not strictly Paleo but sometimes you just have to be flexible, like actual hunter-gatherers

Ultimate Asian Flank Steak Marinade from Just a Taste— this makes for uh-mazing tacos! Slice thinly and place on a corn tortilla with bed of shredded cabbage, guacamole, maybe some sauteed onion and peppers, and some Sriracha. You can thank me later.

Yassa Poulet from The Domestic Man — Russ Crandall can be counted on to create some of the most delicious recipes out there, particularly if you enjoy exploring foods from around the world. This one is a keeper.

Oven Roasted Broccoli from Alton Brown — simple and easy; I omit the bread crumbs and cheese


Seated sled pull, hand over hand

300-310-325-350-360

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Airdyne 30 cal AFAP, 2 rounds with 5min rest in between

1:11, 1:35


25min AMRAP
.25mi run
5 kipping HSPU
10t2b
15 goblet squat 35# dumbbell
4+1 t2b


I’d planned to do some basic cardio yesterday but ended up being hella sunburned, as in I have a raised line where the burn ends. Pretty sure that’s super unhealthy. Instead I sat on a coffee shop patio for a few hours and studied while sneaking glances at my handsome study buddy. Oh, and we witnessed a car accident where someone in one of the cars already had a broken leg. Classic Virginia.
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I’m starting to lift again and apparently didn’t really plan well enough on the shoulder press since I couldn’t finish the last set strict, I had to change to a push press. But I was super happy to get the squats in, I probably could have gone a little heavier. Next time!
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I’d planned to get in a WOD but lost my workout space to a jazzercise class. I did learn that all the Navy Seals go to a local base gym, which has a Crossfit setup. I’m going to check that out this weekend if I have time! A friend back home has also recommended Crossfit Krypton, so that’s an option too. In a perfect world I’ll lift 4 days and MetCon 2-3 days.
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Shoulder press, 2×10 45-65, 1×10 push press 75#
Back squat 3×10, 95-115-135
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Row 2000m, 9:10
3×10 glute-ham raise with 25# plate
3×100 flutterkick


Last weekend we went to Washington D.C., my first time ever! It was amazing to see all of the monuments and gorgeous architecture. We went to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum as well, which was heartbreaking. My great-grandparents and other family members died in WWII concentration camps so it was an emotional visit for me, making what has always seemed so remote a very real and intimate experience. I can’t wait to go back to D.C and spend more time visiting the museums.

In front of the White House!

In front of the White House!

Washington Monument with a couple of my favorite peeps

Washington Monument with a couple of my favorite peeps

Yesterday we went to Cape Charles for a day at the beach. It was glorious and now I’m totally sunburned, crispy like a good potato chip. Luckily I have magical aloe vera, which is taking away some of the burn.

VA is for lovers, yo!

VA is for lovers, yo!

"Wait, an 80's movie jump? What are we doing again???"

“Wait, an 80’s movie jump? What are we doing again???”

Suns out guns out!

Suns out guns out!