Friday, September 27, 2013

SA BeatDown CrossFit Competition Recap

Last weekend my gym banded together and traveled up to San Antonio, TX to take on the SA Beatdown. It was the first stop on a three leg tour put on by several CrossFit affiliates in the San Anontio area. We had 13? competitors and only three of us challenging the RX division.
This event was not my first RX competition, but it was my first individual performance. We were all a little anxious waiting to see what the workouts would be and even more anxious when we discovered what they would be!
The RX girls were pretty squared away when it came to all the moves except handstand walks. HANDSTAND WALKS!!!
I had never even practiced that let alone try and go 25 feet. I had a real need to get my large body up to the chest to bar move for this comp because the strict movement was sporadic and generally terrible on my behalf.
So, lets back up to one week prior to the competition and the announcement of the first workout of 3:

Wod 1:
first 6 minutes- find your 1 rep max thruster
no break:
4 minute AMRAP
30 double unders
10 thrusters 95lbs

This was not a huge concern for me but I wanted to put in a great number here to get me off to a strong start. While thrusters aren't my greatest move, it was my chance to gain reps with a heavy thruster max. The three of us spent a few days testing max with Olympic shoes or nanos. Ultimately, I decided on the nanos and the others went with Oly shoes. I was able to PR in my nanos and knew if I tried doing double unders on my oly shoes I could really hurt my knees.

Wod 2:
3 minute AMRAP
chest to bar pullups
ring pushups

So here is my fear...I was terrible at C2B in the open. It totally destroyed my scores. I had avoided them on a regular basis and still not mastered them. And now, they were there, looking at me again. Monday before the competition I locked myself in the gym and got on the bar with my camera and videoed my technique. After a few it was obvious, I was pulling up and not IN! I was totally high enough but I was under the bar, almost horizontal. A few small changes later and I finally whacked my chest on the bar. Not only did I hit the bar, I hit below my chest and almost at my abdomen! With a little more practice and a change in grip, I was linking 3 together. HUGE breakthrough! I have a 74" wingspan so getting anything overhead can be a challenge.

Wod 3:
25 ft handstand walk
25 calorie row
100ft prowler push 160lb

This was the big challenge but also the huge opportunity to gain points. Row and push are two strengths for me. I just had to get through that handstand walk...

And then, the day came.
We woke up at 5:45am and headed to SA for the 8am start time. We live over an hour away so it was a super early rise for us.
It was unusually cold and windy for south Texas last Saturday. With winds dipping into the 60's I was thinking it could be a wonderful cool day or get really miserable with rain in the forecast.

I began my warmup for Wod 1 about 45 minutes early with a row and some mobility and ended with a few too many thrusters at 125. I didnt want to hit my max projection but for whatever reason, I felt the need to do 125 over and over. I know now I  did too much. I was a little unnerved when another competitor pushed up 145 twice in the warmup area...I knew this was a big event and I would fall in the middle of the pack. still...

I wish I was just a little pretty when I worked hard. First wod started great with me hitting my projected 135 in the first 2 minutes. Since I had some time, I loaded 140 on the bar. Unfortunately, I was unable to lock it out on the left side and had to retry. With only 2 minutes remaining I gave it one more try. Alas, it didn't happen. BUT, 135!! that was my goal and I did it in my Nanos.
My judge must have been new because he seemed nervous about making mistakes. When he told me I had to load 120 on the bar for the AMRAP I just about had a fit. It was supposed to be 95lbs! Was I wrong? He let some time run out and consulted with another judge, yes, 95lbs. Duh!

Good thing I was loaded and done with my max. It didn't phase me much. We hit the 4 minute amrap and I knocked the 30 double unders out fast. Then came the set of thrusters and my arms told me how tired the were. I didn't anticipate being so fatigued. I sucked wind on the thrusters and no-reped the last one, dropping the bar. Boo! I got the last rep and dove into the double unders. I wouldn't see them again. I knew time was running out and I would be lucky to get throughout the thrusters again.
I picked up the bar and was able to get three more before time ran out. DONE!
After reminding my judge how to count and correcting his math, I was satisfied with my score and ready to see my teammates compete. I had an hour or more before I had to get the next wod done (we could choose when to do it as it was a floater wod, meaning we had to just get it done at some point during the day).

Wod 2 was quick and painless with only 3 minutes to get things done. With chest to bars finally in my roledex of skills, it was simply a matter of strength getting me through the levels. The arms were really tired after wod 1 but so was everyone elses. I gave myself about 45 minutes rest and took my chance to get business done when no one was looking directly at me. This is why there are no pictures. I didn't even wait for Mr Dad to show up before starting. I just wanted it over. To my surprise I could hear him yelling at me about a minute into the work. Mr. Dad had arrived in the gym site to see if I was ready. He said he didn't anticipate me starting without him. I felt kind of bad about that but so happy he got to see me work. I did my first two rounds of chest to bar with efficiency and good form. The rings were not nearly as challenging as I thought they would be! But, when I hit the 9s my arms gave in; my muscles wouldn't pull me up consistently. I got to 7 and time ran out. I couldn't do them a week prior but even after the thruster work, I was able to get 16 in under 3 minutes! I was satisfied with that!

The final wod had the three RX girls sitting in 5,6,7 in the division, me sitting 7th. We were able to watch the masters do the wod before us and the men were doing the same weight we would but those lucky guys didn't have to do handstand walks.
 We started the final wod with the walk and I inched along in progress finally getting the full 25 feet in about 5 minutes time. Everyone struggled with the handstand walk but I needed to gain ground where I could.

 I hit the 25 calorie row in  less than a minute sitting in the 1400m range for the pace. I hopped off and pushed the prowler past 2-3 competitors and my butt caught on fire. I started to lock up in the last 5 feet of the push and look a few seconds to get some blood flow before pushing it out and heading back to the walk.
When I finally got there my judge told me I had a few minutes and to get every rep. If I could get to the half way mark, I would gain a rep and score a point. He was hard on me, every time I would come down with a finger inside his instep it was a no rep. This was such a time waster and totally my fault. I managed to will the final rep by getting to the half way mark just as time was called. I was so frustrated and proud of my hard work all at the same time. What a strange way to feel!

That's how it all ended up for me. I was super proud and angry all at the same time. I didn't rule the comp. I didn't shine or get to be impressive for the crowd (who doesn't love that), I didn't really feel like I was much competition for the top finishers, but I did everything I wanted to do. I have to learn to be satisfied with that. I have to realize how many others don't have the ability to do the physical things I take for granted. I'm trying to be patient and thoughtful and grateful for the experience and put the ego aside. It is not an easy lesson to swallow, being great but not the best. It reveals a lot about my character and some of it I'm not very proud of. In the most positive way, I am proud of myself for what I did do and how I performed based on my ability.
Even more importantly, the competitors I have the gift of training everyday took a chance and competed for the first time along with the "RX girls". They were excited and inspiring and wonderful. I cant wait to see how we all progress in the months leading to the next CrossFit Open and our continuing competitions. Our Gym owner was able to move on the the final wod for the women RX and totally put it all out there. She did things we had never been asked to do before (like 1.5 pood kettlebell snatches and overhead walking lunges with a 95lb bar...) she inspired me to get the lead out and get better. As for this competition, I'll settle for 7th place. Pretty impressive to me.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

My Weightloss Story: Part 2

If you missed part one of my story you can catch up here.

So there I was at the end of the marathon, 216 pounds, feeling totally fit and amazing, eating a bagel and cream cheese...thinking this was as good as it was going to get.
Was I really destined to be the Athena athlete beating the odds and tromping across the finish line of every race statistically too big to be there? Was I really happy with the way I felt about myself and how I looked? Decidedly not.
My big fear was, now that the ultimate challenge was complete, what was there to motivate me? If 216 pounds was as good as it got, How the heck was I going to maintain It when running 10 or more miles a day was the standard for the last 9 months? What if I didn't feel like running anymore ?
Rather than think logically, or scientifically, I immediately signed up for a half marathon and went head long into more training. You know the story by now, lots of running, lots of food (mostly grain and vegetables as I was following the running mantra of carbo-load and protein is bad...). I could not imagine fitting in more training (like weights or cross training) it was just too much work! I hurt and I was exhausted...and still stuck at 216 pounds.

Not long before my next big race, Mr. Dad decided to do some shake up of his own. He also ran the marathon and was just sick of running at this point. He did not want to lose the progress he had attained from training so he opted to try a new sport instead.

Mr. Dad had heard of a gym in our little town that was more weightlifting classes than the traditional gym experience. He told me it was like personal training and group exercise rather than running the treadmill and doing machines. That sounded great until I saw this:

Now, I got to the part of the video with the guy doing the ring handstand push ups and totally disconnected. NO ONE wants to do that, right? Who the heck wants to work THAT HARD?!

I patted him on the head and wished him well...then I went to watch my movie and run 10 miles on the treadmill.
One month after the marathon and my weight held steady with no signs of dropping. I regularly consumed fast food and restaurant meals along with a big portion dinner. AND if I wasn't running on my mill, I was sitting on my but looking at the computer. I was totally unmotivated, lonely, and had no real goals to get me to a different place.

Mr. Dad came home from his first class at the new gym totally covered in sweat and red in the face. "CrossFit" had kicked his butt. He told me all about his workout and the fact a 68 year old woman had left him in the dust. This only reinforced in me the idea of it being totally scary and NOT for me.

"You would love it" he says. "They make it so you can do it, you would start slow"...
Well, eventually I would be expected to do all the crazy stuff in that video wouldn't I? Isn't that the goal? Isn't CrossFit supposed to kick your butt everyday and make you an ubber athlete or keep special forces guys in shape for there job? My confidence was so low, I really never thought I could do any of that...specifically because I had not clue how to do it right then and knew I didnt have the ability to if I wanted. "I can't even do a push up". I kept making excuses for myself.

Eventually the curiosity in me caught hold and I wanted to at least watch Mr. Dad do his thing. He was more motivated about this workout class than anything I had seen him do in years.
Before I went, I stumbled upon another video or two as I research a reason not to try this thing out. This one really spoke to me...

..."Everyone knows your name"...
..."If I don't go, someone calls me"...
..."My gym is not fancy"...

I went and checked out the workout. It WAS different. It WAS doable. It Was hard...and it was a competition. The fact they held you accountable by time and not just completion threw a twist I had not anticipated. I LOVE competition.
The next day I did the Filthy Fifty workout with Mr. Dads class.

MONDAY 061204

For time:
50 Box jump, 24 inch box
50 Jumping pull-ups
50 Kettlebell swings, 1 pood
Walking Lunge, 50 steps
50 Knees to elbows
50 Push press, 45 pounds
50 Back extensions
50 Wall ball shots, 20 pound ball
50 Burpees
50 Double unders
Post time to comments.
Compare to 060910.
Posted by lauren at December 4, 2006 2:10 PM 

It was totally scaled and totally slow...but I had a blast getting through the work. I loved seeing all the people around me working so hard, I wondered how I compared in ability. I thought I was a pretty impressive girl, having just finished a marathon...
I quickly realized I was NOT in shape but just a good long distance runner.
I was motivated to see some improvements. I wondered if I could slim down working out so hard in an hour and skipping the two hour sessions on the mill.

Mr. Dad knows me well, I did love it. It was nothing like that first scary video.

I was in love with the community of the gym. It was my little family. Yes, we bonded. Finding friends who wanted the same things in life and struggled by my side to do amazing things...was awesome!!

On the first day of my commitment to trying something new, I took pictures. I hoped to one day not be totally humiliated by them but to use them as a tool for inspiration for myself and others. This is me on the first day of CrossFit January 6, 2012:
216 pounds and 31% body fat (as a marathon runner!)

I gave myself 3 months. I would do the workouts 5 times a week and work hard to see what might happen.
At the 5 month mark I was still going strong pushing bigger weights and running faster than I ever had. My marathon training had all but stopped because I was easily getting in 7-10 miles of running each week during workouts and I felt really good.
And at 5 months I had dropped 7 pounds of fat even though I had not changed my eating one bit. The idea of doing diet and food...seemed like too much to do. It was my reward for working so hard! I like hamburgers!

Surely I would continue to drop the weight if I just worked out hard enough...
29% body fat

At the 10 month mark of my training I was motivated and inspired! I loved the new sport so much.

 I wanted to teach, to inspire, to be a part of the ground floor of the new fitness movement. I went to San Antonio and got certified to instruct.
As the training go harder and the workouts more complex, the frustration over my size was mounting. It was not a frustration over my pants size anymore, my new frustration was the absolute inability to do things smaller people could! If I was so "good" at this sport and so inspired to work hard and compete, why were there certain things I just could not do.

At last the realization had come. I had to really focus on food. It was the food...It had to be better for me to be better. Any heavy person can tell you, they know exactly what they are NOT supposed to eat. Finding the right balance of the right food is the real challenge.
I started with the Paleo diet. Then I got the flu at my 1 year mark of Crossfit training. I don't know if it was going "paleo" or getting sick, or resting for a week that did it but I immediately lost 10 pounds.
27% body fat

Within a month another 5 pounds and I was seeing results in my workouts and weight on the bar.
I totally cheated on paleo eating. I drank beer, I had bread once in a while...
90 percent of the time I ate fruit, nuts, seeds, veg, and lots of meat. I did not deprive myself of meat. This worked but I was tired without carbs ( I wasn't eating enough!!)
27% body fat

I did the CrossFit open, totally scared and overwhelmed...but all that is good for the confidence. I love the quote: "Do something everyday that scares you."- Elenore Roosevelt
It has become my mantra.
In May, I took another rest. Almost two weeks of nothing but rest and a bit of weightlifting for my Olympic certification. I dropped another 15 pounds...almost over night.
Rest? Was rest the magic pill???

The summer has proved eventful. It has been full of joy and sorrow...and it has tested my confidence. Through everything life has thrown at our little family (fires, floods, cancer...) the CrossFit sport and my training has saved me.
It is not a strait arrow to health. CrossFit alone will not make you the picture of amazing achievement you see in so many athletes. For me it was the combination of Consistent training, good clean food in rational portions, and rest.
IT DID NOT WORK WITHOUT THE FOOD IN CHECK. I'm only just beginning to understand how my body works. Food is still a mystery and my nutrition knowledge grows by the day. I read. I learn. I am my own science experiment.
Recently, I asked my trainer what to do with myself now that my "goal weight" had been attained.
22% bodyfat

Her response was simple and true: Keep going. Make new goals. See what this body can really do.

Your never done. Right? There has to be more. The scale has become only a tool to keep my mind in check. I know when I have overdone it with food or training. You HAVE to listen to the body. After almost two years, I don't want to screw things up...I just want to get better.

You must learn all you can.
Never be afraid to try something new to see if it works.
Be consistent when something feels right.

Getting to the sweet spot with your body takes effort. Not just gym effort, not just food effort, not wishing or hoping for better.

But you just have to keep going. Be inspired.

Friday, August 23, 2013

My Weightloss Story Part 1

I was always the wannabe athlete. I had the build to be one heck of a great volleyball player or swimmer. When I was young people told me I was tall enough to be a model or a great basketball player, all before they even had a chance to know me well enough to know if I was even interested in such things.

As a child I loved music and ballet. I remember in kindergarten being told tall girls were not built for ballet so I might as well go do something more productive with my youth.
In high school I was socially awkward and most definatly unique compared to the rest of the girls in my school. I was terrified to really be around the other athletes because I was sure I was not as good as they were, having not spent years on the court or in the pool. So I played in the band. I was told I was a waste there because I should be on the court where I belonged. No mention of if I liked music or enjoied what I was doing.
As you can imagine, this presented a few conflicting thoughts on my young mind. I was an eater. I ate when I was lonely or angry...sad or frustrated. Unfortunatly, that was often. So I was not only tall, but a heavy, often unhappy tall girl.

When I meat Mr Dad in college I was a solid 190 pounds (my lightest in college) and pursuing my interest in competitive mountain biking and keeping my mind away from the heartbreak of my first serious break-up. It didn't take long for the pounds to creep on when Mr. Dad was treating me to restaurant meals and away from the trails and active life I was trying to lead.

So marriage eventually came and so did the dreaded 200s on the scale. The 210 mark followed within the first year and by the time we had our first daughter in 2005 I topped out at my pregnancy at 265. I never hurt so badly in my life as I did at that weight carrying a baby. I fought the weight by working vigurously at my job as a PE teacher. I played touch football, ultimate frisbee, swam, and managed 300 students and the equipment all myself. It never occured to me the slice of carrot cake and fried chicken I fed myself each day might be keeping my pregnancy weight higher than anticipated.

I gave birth and expected the weight to fall off and back down to the then comfortable 210 range. Who knew taking care of a baby and working full time made you too tired to exercise and cook well?

When the oldest daughter turned 18 months old I was still in the 220 range and feeling awful. I went off to Weight Watchers and they taught me the good ol' point system. I of course lost weight and got to eat all the junk food along the way...just as long as I stayed within my points.
An average day:
Mcdonalds sausage mcmuffin 7pts
instant oatmeal 3pts
lean cuisine meal 7pts
Chicken breast and salad dinner 7pts
Snack 3pts

As you can see, it was a terrible nutrition profile...but I lost weight. Isnt that what I wanted?
I began running and pushing my comfort level as an athlete. I felt accomplished when I ran my first 5k. At 29 years old I began believing there might be more to this body than I gave myself credit. I felt like a real athlete, not afraid to push my comfort zone...much.
In 2007 I became pregnant with my second daughter and remembering the pain I put myself through being so active during my first pregnancy, I immediatly stopped all active efforts and dropped back into the fast food line two times a day.
Guess what? I gained every pregnancy pound I had lost. I tipped the scales once again in the 260's at the end of my term.
It was only a few weeks after my youngest childs' birth that I began walking her in the stroller. Eventually I ran.
I still ate like crap. I never lost any weight.

My father became very ill in the winter of 2011. We were sure he would not be with us long. To show support and maybe a little desperation (who can do much for a cancer patient 1000 miles away?) I vowed to run a marathon in his honor. I wanted to do something hard, impossible, something worthy of my fathers respect. I also wanted to get healthy and get as far away from cancer as I could.
I trained for 40 weeks for my first marathon. Diligently, I ran according to the ultra novice plan I found on an internet search.
I lost some weight. Not much.
I crossed the finish line at the 2011 San Antonio Rock N Roll Marathon in 5:37 and weighing in at 216 pounds.
I spent 20 hours a week running my tail off. Miles and miles and miles...
I never changed my nutrition.
So the big question was, why was I still so big? I was a runner, I ran 10+ miles a day, I ran a marathon!! I needed to eat!!
I was broken. I needed to find the answer and inspiration within myself. I thought I would have that at the finish line of the big race. Instead, I found a bagel and cream cheese.

My answer did come...stay tuned for part 2

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Paleo Stroganoff and Zuchini Noodles

It's been a while since I created a recipe and with the local athletes doing a clean eating challenge, I was inspired to get in the kitchen and make something new. It's not surprising that we have been living off the grill and big salads in the Texas summer heat, but I do actually cook on the stove sometimes. Because it is so hot and I am so lazy. It is important that each meal be quick and simple (with few ingredients...).

I was trolling Pinterest a few days back looking for something other than a salad or grill marinade and stumbled upon a very involved paleo stroganoff. If you grew up in the 80's like me, I'm sure you had your fair share of box meal stroganoff or some crazy mix of cream of mushroom soup and ground beef (like at my house). It is a very basic European stew with beef, mushrooms, onion, and various additions depending on the region. Usually, big ol egg noodles laid under our meal...back in the day.

So, I didn't have all the ingredients for the labor intensive Pinterest stroganoff. I DID have  bunch of stuff that might make something similar to the description, or with hope, just taste edible. 
So off I went to the test kitchen (this is a lot  like the Bat Cave without the fancy lighting or man servant to do my bidding). 
This picture was not taken at my house or by me, but they look fabulous

So, anyway, back to the test kitchen. 
The NOODLER! Sounds like a diabolical evil mastermind and it was created by such, no doubt. This thing is amazing. It makes noodles out of stuff. I tried zucchini first because children hate zucchini and I love torturing my children at dinner.
The noodler worked like a charm! It made long ribbons of fancy zucchini and it was very pretty sitting in the bowl on the counter. The device cleaned up faster than the actual "noodling" and that is a huge plus for my lazy ass.
If you have not invested in a NOODLER! is highly recommend one. I got mine at for about $25. 

While noodling, I set a large pan to heat with 2 tbsp. butter on the stove. You could use Gee but I'm Not So Paleo. 
Here is what I did for the stroganoff:
1 lb ground beef
1 medium onion chopped
2 tbsp butter or gee
1 1/2 cup mushrooms quartered 
1/2 cup Prego spaghetti sauce (heart healthy, gluten free, low sugar = good enough)
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
Pink sea salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)

- Once the butter was melted I softened the onion and browned the beef together
-Once the beef was browned, I added the mushrooms, Prego, and coconut milk
-I let everything simmer on low for about 15 minutes
-In the last few minutes before serving, I threw some butter and the "noodles" into another pan for a quick cook. I finished them off with some salt and pepper

I guess if you want a creamier texture you can add arrow root to the mix but I liked the texture fine without it. 
The final product was filling, hearty, sweet and flavorful. I loved the new creation and know it will be a welcome addition to my dinner rotation. The real winner is the noodler. I bought it back in June and this was my first meal using it. I can't wait to try sweet potato noodles and maybe carrot twirls! My kids might learn to like zucchini...

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Tips On Life: Being Awesome Is...

Being awesome is a lot of things.

 Always owning your actions
Sticking to classy
Colorful language... and socks

Supporting others in triumph, even when they out-do yours
Standing by those you hold most dear
Wearing your workout clothes to the grocery store and totally rocking your dirty spanky pants and filthy tshirt
Dancing in the rain
Filing up the gas tank before the E...

Being Awesome is not:
Sticking your finger in a moving fan without a protective cover at 2am the night before rope climbs
Sending your best friend the Golden Lasso in the mail disguised as a gift (actually it was halarious and most awesome)

And most of all, being awesome is NOT showing up to a distress call 1 hour after a water main breaks in the front yard during a stage 5 water restriction!! Thanks City Water NOT awesome of you. Lesson learned.
(But Andre the amazing handyman WAS awesome in helping repair the pipe in our front yard using $4 in supplies and a few old pull-up bar pipes. Ingenious!!)

Most awesome of the day was this:

Nothing like a random kid giving a personalized portrait in a most flattering resemblance during your favorite part of the day. Yay CrossFit Kids Goofballs.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Clean Eating Roast Beef Summer Salad

Not long ago I was rummaging through some books at a church yard sale. I came across a copy of one of those Weight Watchers cookbooks and was surprised at how many recipes could easily be converted to fit my cleaner eating. I happily paid the .25 and have been planning my menu choices since. Now that we are almost settled in our new house, I have calmed down enough to where every meal is almost planned. It is a good effort on my part to plan a menu for the week but inevitably, we screw it up somehow. However, Mondays menu for dinner actually happened!

I have had a wedge of Amish Gorgonzola cheese waiting to be used and I think the roast beef would be good with any cheese. What do the Amish do to cheese to make it different? The ol' butter churn must be magic because it was awesome. Does that make me a person who stereotypes? I'm totally envisioning the Amish ladies standing around churning my Gorgonzola. I did not envision them wearing wooden shoes. I am one of those worldly educated types.

Have you ever eaten capers? The Weight Watchers folks called for capers in their recipe and I ignored them. Capers look gross. They look like little alien pods and I am sure they taste really bad. I'm an adventure girl with food but capers gross me out.
Anyway, here is what I did:
2 cucumbers
3 tomatoes
1/3 large onion
1/4 cup fresh mint

Then I added:
2 tbsp balsamic
1 tbsp EVOO
A few pinches Himalayan Pink Sea make it fancy
Cracked pepper
4oz sliced roast beef (per serving
1 oz crumbled Gorgonzola (per serving)

The WW recipe called for bread cubes to soak up the extra balsamic and I didn't add that in. I found it to be a little runny so I cut down the amount of balsamic and oil to make up for that. I think it did need a little texture so if you like orzo pasta, it would be a nice mix. I considered black beans too...but ultimately didn't put them in

While looking at my new cookbook I also pulled out (proudly offensive) my Paula Dean cookbooks: The Lady and Sons and The Lady and Sons Too! cookbooks. I am totally frying up some chicken this week in the collection of bacon fat I have. If I'm going to have a "sometimes meal" (a better name for a cheat meal) I want it to be a song from the south. Summer screams fried chicken to me and ever since the cold chicken I had on the fourth of July, I have been craving some real stuff.
I am going to have me a Sunday Dinner y'all!
Maybe on Thursday, but who's counting?

Monday, July 15, 2013

Mobility Mondays: Front Rack Mobility Sequence From Eat Big Lift Big

I have been following the most fantastic blog recently, Eat Big Lift Big is a solid instruction mobility weightlifting nutrition site devoted to getting you better at stuff.
 I came across this mobility sequence on the site last week and used it in my mobility class Saturday. In addition, Mr. Dad has agreed to let me build him from the ground up in proper Olympic lifting and Power lifting. We have begun by focusing primarily on good form and muscle memory through the technical aspects of lifting. His hip mobility and upper thoracic spin are limited but surprisingly, the front rack positioning has improved ten fold in a week. I will attribute it to the following video and my mean nature, contorting him into uncomfortable stretches.
Having a high front rack position is essential for front squat, cleans, and general awesomeness.
Here is the video:

Some of these moves will take some serious dedication to have the range of motion exhibited, but almost anyone can get started on the sequence. It takes about 20 minutes to get through with proper technique and I added a foot and LAX ball roll at the end for good measure. Now that I roll my feet everyday, I can tell when I really need it. My poor feet thank me as soon as they even ctch a hint of the LAX ball coming near them.

In other news, a friend and I are signing up for the 31 Heroes WOD competition on August 3rd.
I am so honored to be a part of this movement for our first competition. Mr. Dad and I have lost several friends over the years due to their heroic work in the Armed forces and I want to give back to those families.
Here is a quick write-up on the event:


31 Heroes 2013 – August 3, 2013 at a Crossfit Affiliate Near You.
“31 Heroes”
AMRAP 31 minutes (As Many Reps As Possible)
8 Thrusters (155/105#)
6 Rope Climbs (15 ft. ascent)
11 Box Jumps (30/24″)
This is a Partner WOD – Partner #1 will perform the work listed above. Partner #2 will run 400m with a sandbag (45/25). Once Partner #2 returns from the run, Partner #1 will grab the sandbag and begin their 400m, while Partner #2 continues work wherever #1 left off.
Score is your total # of reps
This WOD was created specifically to honor the 30 men and one dog that gave their lives for our country on August 6, 2011. It is 31 minutes long—one minute in remembrance of each hero. The rep scheme is 8-6-11—the date of their ultimate sacrifice. Finally, this is a partner WOD. The men who gave their lives were from multiple branches of our military, working together as a team.  In the workout you and your team member will constantly be taking the load from each other providing much needed support and relief. We realize that no physical sacrifice made during a workout can come close to the sacrifice our brave heroes made, but we consider this WOD a CrossFitters “moment of silence.” This is how we can honor those that gave all in the name of freedom.
We have been working hard to perfect the rope climb foot holds and decents allong with those super heavy thrusters! Holy cow that is a lot of weight. Anyway, training continues. 
Food soon!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Mobility Monday: Have Happy Feet!

Hey there!
Yay it's Monday again. I have been neglecting my mobility posts for many obvious reasons (vacation, move, giant fire, CrossFit Kids classes...) and I found a quick minute to do my first ever VLOG!
Now, keep in mind, it is too hot to wear makeup (I rarely do anyway) and I am no actress so my video is raw and simple.
Many of my Mobility/ Yoga participants have been telling me how much working with a ball on the feet is improving their overall well being. Much of the imbalances we have and pain we feel are tied to the feet in some way or another. Mobilizing the joints and ligaments along with loosening up all those little muscles will put you on the path to a more pain free day.

I noticed my little nervous quirk of fluttering my eyelids showed up on the vlog too. Just chalk that up to my unique personality and ignore it.
Anyway, get a lacrosse ball! Start with the feet and roll them everyday!!

Friday, July 5, 2013

A Long Month Update

To say the last month was eventful would be the largest understatement of my life. In addition to a long trip to Colorado, a new home purchase, a move, and the onset of summer, life has twisted and turned in good ways and bad. Thankfully, we are settling into a grove for the summer and life is returning to a slower pace. I forgot how much I love small town life. So, with that, I will give you a picture highlight reel of many of the events in our lives during June. I will be posting on a regular schedule now that we have wifi and time to breathe!!

After my experience at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, I spent a few days at CrossFit SoCo with this pretty lady. Loree is my favorite trainer in Colorado Springs and I visit her when I can. She talks about poop.

Here is one of the WODs I completed while there. I loved being able to keep up with all the high altitude athletes!!

While in Colorado, I was missing Texas. We ate at Rudy's BBQ often. Its one of the few TRUE Texas BBQs outside of the great state.

I worked on Double Unders and plenty of cool afternoon WODs in the back yard

Ate some amazing  Paleo hamburger set ups in Denver...

Did some impromptu yoga moves to impress the in laws

Then this happened.
This smoke plume is the very beginning of the Black Forrest Fire in Colorado this summer. This picture was taken as I raced back to help evacuate the home my husband knew his whole life. His family had lived there for 40 years and it was quickly looking like it would not make it through the blaze.

Fortunately, my husband and his parents were home at the time. They were able (in a somewhat dazed fashion) to get a few pictures and a suitcase of clothes. They truly did not think the forest would burn the 5 miles  down the road from its origin to their home.They escaped just as the fire was cresting the hill east to their part of the forest. I stayed in town because all roads were blocked going into the forest. We met up at a restaurant thinking the sprinkler running on the roof might save it. I had bought a select pack of craft beer in the mountains and figured it was not enough to take the edge off the stress of the situation. I never went to buy more beer and we didn't drink that six pack. We just hoped. We slept on living room floors in hopes of good news in the morning.

 We didn't get good news.
The picture below marks where the 10 acre home site of our family is. The circle is where the home used to stand. To the right is another home site of our family. In all, 9 of our family members lost 99% of there belongings and their homes burned completely.
What was amazing about the people of Colorado Springs, the Facebook Community, and my extended family and friends is, we were saturated with overwhelming support from the moment people heard the news. It is a testimony to the kindness of others and the realization for my family...we are worth helping. Faith in humanity restored! We received so many donations in the form of clothes, toys, toiletries, and monetary funds. My cousin in Seattle sent over 200 pounds of children and women's clothing!
Paninos Restaurant extended a warm welcome to us the day we got the news. Random people heard our story and handed money from there pocket in the check out line...not allowing anyone to pay for toothpaste or new underwear.

On a lighter note, that same day, we were treated to the long awaited news of our new niece or nephew. We have been hoping for a child for my brother and sister in law for close to ten years and FINALLY, the are expecting. The news it is a girl is a shock (family of all boys for Mr. Dad) and huge smiles erupted as the pink balloons jumped from the box at the reveal BBQ we attended (a very cute idea for Mom and Dad to Be).

We had to leave to return home to Texas the day after the news about the fire. It was a blessing, because we felt like we could not help the situation. The family had to start the process of finding a place to stay, insurance, and rebuilding some sense of normal...

My welcome home WOD was awesome!

Letting off stress from our devastating news was necessary. 

We went to a wedding on the Mexican border

I wore my first red dress. I also had heels on making me at least 6'6. For a wedding on the boarder, that made me the tallest person in town by about 5 inches.

I began going to the 5am class at the gym because CrossFit Kids takes up so much of my day. It is impossible to workout, coach, teach, and keep my own children sane for 5 hours at the gym. I don't mind early...

We like hanging around the gym...

We try and do some hiking when the mornings are cool.

Giant turkey cube and avocado salads with pico are a weekly MUST!!

We moved into our new home last week. We picked the day it was 107 to do it! My sweet friend Miss Janice took the kids on an outing to lunch and got their toes done at the salon. That's something I would never do with them and they loved it.
We made three trips with a 26 foot truck. Our awesome new neighbor Andre came by and helped load and unload the second trip. Had he not, I think we would still be transporting. It was awful. Good thing my headband was epic.

We went to another wedding. I wish I got more pictures at this one. I wore a great little blue dress that didn't touch my body (amazing and required because it was outside and 104 at the reception! But they had cocktails during the ceremony under the trees. Best wedding ever!

since our move I have only been able to find ONE Awesome sock. I'm heartbroken. Calling all Awesome Sock providers!! I need a new pair!

I have these till then. I wore them a few times, and of course on the fourth of July!

The Fourth was filled with a Holiday WOD at the gym, a few hours of needed rest, chicken, and FIREWORKS!! our town put on the first display in a VERY long time last night. It was so fun to see the kids enjoy the show. Good friends, good food, and a great night!

Life has been a roller coaster. Tears, sweat, and smiles a plenty in the last month. All I can say is I have missed you my dear readers! You all inspire me to keep pushing to be my best and to learn more. To cook better meals, to write better stories, and create the best NOT SO PALEO life I can. Thanks for taking a look at the update and have a great weekend!