Search This Blog

About Me

My photo
My excessive energy, extreme narcissism, and intense love of neon-colored spandex is both managed and fueled by my addiction to fitness. I push myself to extremes and I push other people's buttons. Obviously I needed my own blog.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

January 2016 Goals

Good morning! It's February 1, so 36% of Americans have already thrown in the towel on their New Years Resolutions. I am one of the 64% who still have their butts in gear.

Pure Barre goal: 16 classes in January. My monthly goal is 10 classes, but our studio had a 16 classes in 31 days challenge and I like to win challenges.

CrossFit goal: 8/200 WODS. I went to CrossFit 8 times in January, making a slight dent in my goal of 200 WODs in 2016. I had two drop-ins - CrossFit Willy B and Beltway CrossFit.

Wellness goals: I have been tracking my water intake on most days and getting close to 100 ounces of water or more a day. I have been sleeping a little better. I also have an Ambien prescription but I try to not take it.

I've been working with my nutrition coach Jenna from Crazy Healthy Fit since November and I've been making some real progress. Today I weighed in at 143.8 lbs., down from 150 lbs. I have this Omron body fat tester but for the life of me, I cannot get a consistent reading. I am going to get my body fat tested again this month to see how much I have improved since October 31.

My new Target bathing suit. How many more days until pool season?

My friend Drew inspired me to commit to losing some body fat. Drew was one of my first friends in Atlanta and she welcomed me to CrossFit Identity right away. Then she decided to leave me for Dallas! Drew is a badass, a lawyer, a CrossFit coach, a wife, and a wonderful mama to some beautiful furbabies. She's basically my hero. So when Drew made a goal to lose some body fat last summer and then knocked her goal OUT OF THE PARK, even after attending the Texas State Fair, I was like girl, you need to make a commitment to yourself too. Today is Drew's first day at her new job, which is sadly still in Texas, and I hope she has an awesome day!

Drew came to visit us in October and it was magical.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Surviving Travel Without Blowing Your Macros

I, like many other people, travel for work. My feelings about traveling for work have changed over the years. It used to be, Sweet! I get to stay in a hotel and reimburse all of my meals! Now it's more, Fuck! Should I pack a cooler bag? I like eating for free so I haven't gone as far as prepping and flying with all of my own food... yet.

Here are some tips and tricks I've learned from four years (and counting) of work travel. These also apply to any kind of travel, but most people want to indulge on vacation.

1. Make your hotel work for you. People who work at hotels are fantastic and able to make your stay perfectly fit your needs, especially if you call ahead and ask nicely. I like to call up the hotel a few days in advance, introduce myself, and ask if it is possible to have a room with an empty refrigerator and a microwave. Many hotels will put a microwave in your room for the duration of your stay if you simply ask. Some hotels only have minibars and charge you to empty it. Those hotels are on my shit list. Make sure to ask for silverware or come prepared with plastic cutlery. The plastic stuff is especially helpful if you will be eating on the go.

2. Locate healthy prepared meals. Many cities offer prepared foods geared towards the fitness community. Googling meal prep or paleo delivery (even if you don't eat paleo) and the city is usually a good way to find websites. In New York, I like to order from Kettlebell Kitchen. The only downside is that they deliver to gyms so I have to hike over to CFHK to get my order even if I'm not training there that week. While in Houston this past weekend, I found a My Fit Foods down the street from my hotel. Sweet niblets, is that place cool. You walk in and can get all of your meals out of the cooler. Jeremy, the sales consultant, told me that next time I can call him directly, tell him my macros and he'll have all of my stuff picked out and ready to roll by the time I land. If you are in Texas, California, Oklahoma, Arizona, Illinois or traveling to any of these states, you need to try this place.


3. Identify splurges. Unless you travel with the aforementioned cooler, you will find yourself hungry in front of a menu with tempting treats. Figure out when you will splurge and prepare for it. I knew I wanted to see my friend Bailey while I was in Houston, so I made sure to eat three My Fit Foods meals throughout the day (it came to about 1,000 calories) and then went to the bar to hang out. I was driving so I wasn't drinking (no alcohol carbs) and I decided to indulge in some fried pickles and french fries. It didn't wreck havoc on my day and I wasn't starving so I didn't need to eat a full meal there, which could have easily surpassed 1,000 calories. Flying home during dinnertime is my biggest pitfall. I usually try to go with tacos but yesterday's tacos were a real fail. I should have picked something up on the way to the airport and brought it through security because I would have been happier with my choice. IAH just sucks for food and I knew that, but I saw the taco place when I landed and thought I was good to go.

4. Don't beat yourself up because you didn't hit your numbers. Last night I was annoyed at myself because I was way low on protein, my tacos hadn't satisfied me and I ate them at 5:30 PM ET, and it was 9 PM and I was hungry. I ate Cheerios and focused on the positive food choices I had made while I was away. 

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Beltway CrossFit

Greetings from Houston! Yesterday I cancelled my early morning Pure Barre class to spend some quality time with my two favorite guys - Frank and the boyfriend. I knew I needed to get to the airport a little earlier than usual because of the impending snowmageddon inch of snow and that attending a noon class anywhere in Atlanta was really pushing my luck. No worries, because a simple Google search told me that Beltway CrossFit is located right down the road of Bush International Airport.

I always like to call ahead before I drop-in. I spoke with Coach Michael Gager, who told me that I could show up to either the 5:30 or 6:30 PM WOD. I landed early but had a bit of a delay at the rental car desk because the lady in front of me was trying to use a false address. I ended up arriving at the box at like 5:32 PM but Coach Aron Anderson was awesome and let me get changed and join a little late. Unfortunately I missed the tire flip warm-up.

Beltway CrossFit does chipper WODs on Fridays. I really like chippers because I find them mentally less challenging - I've got a goal to do, I just need to get to the next movement, and I don't have to keep track of rounds.

1 Mile Run
6 Gymnastic Combos (1 Rope Climb + 10 Strict Push-ups)
80 Alternating DB Snatches (60/40lb)

***Each exercise must be completed before moving to the next!
*3 short dead climbs will equal 1 tall climb
*Must alternate arms on the db snatches.


I used the one mile run as my warm up. I made sure to stand right behind the run leader because I wasn't really sure how they measure a mile even though Coach explained it about 6 times. It felt good to loosen up after my flight.

CrossFit Identity had rope climbs and handstand push-ups on Tuesday. I think I switched from the J wrap to the S wrap sometime last year and now my left ankle has some sweet permanent rope bruises. It's not a burn as much as tender mark from pressing the damn rope into my leg. I could definitely feel Tuesday's rope climbs the minute I got up on the rope. We climbed to the 15 foot mark. The push-ups were regular push-ups. I thought maybe they were HSPU when I saw strict, but they were not.

I used 25# for the dumbbell snatches. I probably could have used 30#, but I hadn't done any dumbbell snatches in a minute and wasn't sure how low to scale. My time was 23:08.

This was the best group I have ever dropped in with and I had such a great time. The class was really supportive of each other and included me right away. Roger and I shared a rope for the climbs and he cheered me on for every rep. As people called time, they turned to the person next to them to cheer them on. Chris Rx'd the WOD and was fighting to get through 24 more reps at 60#. We gathered to help motivate him and I kept count. I fucking hate trying to keep count when I am fighting through the pain cave so I try to make myself useful and count for others when they're in that situation. I was really impressed by Chris' drive to knock out those reps.

I enjoyed myself so much that I hung out for 45 minutes after class. Chris was giving me some tips for chest to bar pull-ups. I'm excited to work on them with a wider grip and see if I can finally get one. A group of us discussed our respective diets and I shared my new found love of macro-counting and flexible dieting. I encouraged everyone to sign up for the Open. Beltway CrossFit was a great time and only $15 to drop in. You can also buy a $25 shirt instead.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Finding What You Love

In January 2013, I couldn't imagine having the life that I have now. With the exception of my family, I didn't love anything, except maybe for cigarettes. I still love (and hate) cigarettes, but that's another post. I didn't even love my family well because I was unhappy and blinded by my unhappiness and I loved selfishly. But then I finally worked up the courage to go to CrossFit.

CrossFit taught me how to be a human being with feelings. It taught me how to be a member of a community. It taught me how to love others. And then I got my dog Frank and I realized that as much as I love my fellow CrossFitters, I love dogs more than all humans. Especially rescue dogs. Especially rescue dachshunds.

My social media newsfeeds are literally all CrossFit, macro-counting inspiration, rescue dogs, and dachshund memes. Basically my whole dream in life is to live in a house large enough to hold an epic home gym and 17 rescue dogs. If you need me, I will be practicing muscle ups (hey, it's my dream life) on my rig in the backyard with all of my dogs running around in the sunshine. Now I just need to figure out how to finance this dream.

An oldie but a goodie. How cute does he look in his little coat?

The Open is coming and the CrossFit Media team has been busy posting inspirational stories about everyday CrossFitters who push themselves every year in this worldwide competition. I love the Open so damn much. It is the most wonderful time of the year and celebrates the community. I'm so thankful that I found something that makes me this happy. I am so excited to have a semi-regular schedule again that allows me to renew my unlimited membership at CFID.

My hope for everyone is to find what you love because that's where we find happiness - by building it ourselves. Maybe CrossFit is not for you (I actually firmly believe CrossFit is for everyone, even if you're not ready to let it into your life just yet), but you get out there and find something that brings you joy, pushes you to be the best version of yourself, and allows you to find purpose. I now know that my purpose it to always Rx the cheer and be the best mom to Frank (and the other 16 dogs I am getting once I become the owner of the world's first dog rescue gym.)

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Pact App

My manager at Teach For America introduced me to this awesome little app called Pact. It rewards you for going to the gym, tracking your food, and even eating your veggies.

Once you sign up, you set your goals and assign an amount of money. My goal is to exercise five days a week, and if I miss a day, I get charged $10. My other goal is to track my food five days a week, and I get charged $5 for missing a day. I don't really like tracking my food, but I know that I should, so I added it to my Pact.

You can check into a gym or sync your fitness tracker or phone to Pact. Sometimes I complete more than 5 workouts a day, so it will say that those workouts are uncounted, because unfortunately you only count one workout per day towards your Pact. It's BS if you ask me.

At the end of the week, everyone who failed to complete their Pact gets charged, and that pool of money is split amongst those of us who successfully completed their Pacts. The amount of money you assign to your Pact doesn't increase the amount you win. But I know that I keep my fingers crossed that the people who fail have assigned a high amount so there's more money in the winner's pot.

I started using Pact during the summer of 2014. After completing 781 activities, I had $110.62 in rewards money. I withdrew money to donate to a sweet little dachshund named Sally who is fighting a flesh-eating bacteria. Sally had her skin grafts last week and is doing well, but her vet bills remain very high. I am incredibly thankful that I had an extra stash of money to donate that I earned from things that I do anyway. The hardest part of Pact is remembering to check in at the gym.

If you need some accountability and you like making money, I highly recommend Pact. They have great customer service who deals with me on a regular basis. My phone was acting wonky for a few weeks and they were always helping me correct my Pact.

My Thighs are Hungover

This month I'm focusing on Pure Barre because our studio is having a challenge. The goal is complete 16 classes in the 31 days of January. I have two work trips this month but I'm on track to finish my 16th class on the 31st. I really like filling in the circles on the studio tracker chart. Clients who complete the challenge receive a special tank top. I'm not sure if I get one because I'm a team member, but I did use 8 or 9 of my paid classes towards the challenge, so maybe I do. I at least deserve half a tank top, right?

Sometimes I feel like I should wear a tank top to class that says, "Disclaimer: These thighs came from CrossFit." I know I look bulkier than many of the other girls who take class as often as I do. Some of the language that gets used in class includes describing movements as something that will trim your thighs or side seat, and I get that trimming lower body parts is a goal for many women. It is not a goal of mine. I actually work very hard to have thighs and a butt as large as I do. My goal is to make these muscles more defined and that's something I'm working on through my diet. In my head, I imagine some of these women thinking, "Oh that poor girl. She's here all the time and her thighs are still so big." Mission accomplished, ladies.

One of our front desk associates, Michelle, was wearing this tank the other day.
Even though I've been going to Pure Barre more often that CrossFit, my lifts are improving. I credit the isometric holds and increased body awareness I've gained from regularly tucking, shaking, and pulsing at Pure Barre Virginia Highland*. Yesterday I went to CrossFit in the morning and Pure Barre in the evening. The strength portion was 5x3 tempo squats (3-3-1-3) at 65% of your 1RM. My 1RM is 200 lbs but I haven't hit that since November 2014. I've been struggling to hit my percentages since before tour and dropped all of my numbers down. It was disheartening, but I knew I had lost strength and needed to check my pride before getting hurt. Sixty-five percent of 200 is about 130 and I used 135#. I was over the moon excited that I was able to move that kind of weight and it felt easy. I credit Pure Barre for teaching me how to active my glutes and hold uncomfortable positions for a long period of time comfortably. I got down into my squats and hung out in the hole for 3 seconds without panicking that I would get stuck. I will say that I should have switched my workouts because tucking in a squat on high tip toes felt like the devil later that evening.

*I live in a neighborhood called Virginia Highland. It is named after the intersection of Virginia Avenue NE and North Highland Avenue NE. Some people call it Virginia Highlands, even though we're not named after any highlands and the street does haven't an S. I've seen our studio written as both.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Are D Balls Cheating?

So this has been on my mind for a minute since CrossFit Identity got some sweet new equipment - what's up with the D balls? Are we really supposed to use them for wallballs? Do they constitute cheating?

Wallballs are my nemesis. I fucking hate those things more than anything - more than toes-to-bar, more than thrusters, more than burpee box jump overs (I actually really like burpee box jump overs because I am a sick sick woman.) But wallballs are evil.

This is a Dynamax medicine ball. Sure, you can do Russian twists with the thing, but if you CrossFit, I'm sure you've experienced it's true ugly purpose - the wallball. A little number is inked above the stitching and it means the weight of the dang thing in pounds. The best 6 weeks of my CrossFit career were after my nose job because my doctor specifically said no wallballs when he heard that it meant a 14 lbs ball would be sailing down from the wall and potentially whacking me in the face. 


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

New Year, New Goals

So I had all of these plans for a bajillion blog posts for the new year and now it's January 13 and I am posting for the first time in 2016. To be honest, I've been really stressed out this year. Two new jobs, a new travel schedule, trying to figure out what 3.5 jobs in two different states in one year means for my taxes... I've worked myself up into a real tizzy. And that's my number one goal for 2016 -

Focusing on living my life one moment at a time. I get awful anxiety and I let it gnaw at me until I get angry and I can't relax or sleep. I paralyze myself with anxiety and then I feel a lot of guilt about wasting time. I recently read this click bait about turning anxiety into excitement. Today I pulled myself out of bed, dropped Frank at daycare, went to Pure Barre even though I wasn't working the front desk, came home to shower, and even put on REAL CLOTHES before sitting down to work. (Speaking of real clothes, these pants I am wearing are a pair of size 2 J.Crew trousers. Guess who is down to 145.2 lbs?) Instead of freaking out about all of the things I have to do today and cancelling Pure Barre and rushing to my home desk in my pajamas, I took it one step at a time. I got more done. Mind blown.

I also have some performance goals for 2016.

WOD 200 times in 2016. I saw that a CrossFitter from CrossFit Jersey City had this goal for 2015 and he reached it by the beginning of December. 200 divided by 12 is 16.67, so it looks like I need to WOD at least 17 times a month to meet this goal. With my travel schedule and Pure Barre, I know that there are some months where I'll need to step it up more than others. I'm excited to renew my unlimited membership at CrossFit Identity in February.

Tuck 10 times a month. The biggest perk of my new Pure Barre front desk associate position is a free unlimited membership. My goal is to make it to class 10 times every month. I started Pure Barre to supplement my CrossFit, not replace it.

Train for a 1/2 marathon. I am registered for the HOTLANTA Half Marathon on Sunday, June 12. I haven't trained for anything in a long time. I'm using this race to get ready for another 2016 goal.

Complete the Marine Corps Marathon in under 4 hours. I deferred my entry last year because tour was effing crazy. I knew in my heart that it would have been a wasted experience to shove another weekend of travel into my schedule. This year I'm going to look forward to the race and I am going to honey badger it.

I have some other general life and wellness goals.

Sleep 8 hours a night. Y'all know I suck at sleeping. This year I am focusing on getting some solid shuteye. I'm no longer impressed by my ability to function on little to no sleep. I also don't do it as well as I used to.

Drink 3 liters of water daily. Sometimes I am fantastic at meeting this goal, and other days I realize I've had maybe 8 oz. I choose liters as my measurement because I use a 1.5 liter water bottle and then I commit to drinking two of them. It's 101.4 oz, so 100 ounces a day is also a good goal.

Rock the GMAT. I've been talking about business school since I was 21 years old. (I am now 29 for those of you not keeping count.) There's always been some reason why I haven't taken the GMAT, but then something happens professionally, and it would be the perfect time to go to business school and I have no test scores. I have a new job that I really enjoy at a company that seems to be a very strong fit. I don't have any plans to leave, BUT that means this is a great time to take the GMAT. I start a Veritas Prep course in February and take the test in April. The scores are good for 5 years, which gives me a lot of time to decide if I want to go full-time, part-time, executive, or never.

Comment on other blogs. I read other blogs but I subscribe to the posts and receive them in my inbox. I rarely take the time to post a comment or engage with the blogger, which is kind of silly since I read what they write every time they post. This goal is less about meeting a comment quota and more about taking some time to engage with others who like to do similar things as me - exercise and write about it.

And so folks - two weeks into 2016, I have set some pretty big goals for the year. Stop being a crazy person, exercise like a crazy person, make friends with other crazy people. Wish me luck.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...