Can 4-letter words involve an apostrophe?

Sorry I haven’t been very successful with the blogging lately!  “The Thing”, as we call my departure from VA, is rapidly approaching and I haven’t been at a computer much.  Still finding time to hit the gym, of course:) 

Today I endured James’s Week 6 Day 3 leg workout, and I felt so accomplished as I hobbled out of the gym!  I recently read an article about a ten year-old girl who can squat twice her body weight.  I usually only squat about 50lbs (less than half of my body weight) and realized that I was slacking!  Usually it’s because I can’t really lift more than 60 over my head without looking like I’m seizing, but this morning I conquered the squat rack!  I busted out 3 set of 15 squats at 95lb. and I was dying! Luckily, it was so early that there was no one there to see me stuggling to stand. You know how much I love squats, but it was slow going at 6:00am and my motivation was definitely low.  About half way through the 2nd set, I was maybe a little stuck in the squat position and thought “I can’t get up.”


What I really couldn’t tolerate was that I had said can’t.  For the few of you who have been to the gym with me, you know that word is like saying “Voldemort” to muggle-me (though there is still some possibility that my acceptance letter owl was hit by a car, I’m still holding out hope).  I learned long ago that can’t would never again be a part of my vocabulary.  I danced ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, and whatever else I could fit in, with the same teacher for quite a few years and who drilled quite a few helpful life lessons in to my brain.

The first came about while the class was stretching: we’d put one leg up on the wall behind us, and do a standing split. Well, to be honest, my splits sucked.  I had no muscle, so I had “the shakes”, and had to stand up on that wall for 5 minutes while he pulled my foot towards my head.  Sort of hard to picture, but think of something pretzel-like.  At one point, I said the dreaded word and he pulled me up and said:

“No.  You CAN do anything, but if you won’t then that’s your head’s fault.  Don’t blame your body for something your mind is too lazy to do.”


It really stuck with me, and I am always happy to tell someone how dumb their mind is being about something:)  Today, it was my own mind that was being an idiot.  It was a pretty motivational moment for myself and the weighted bar I was holding, and I eventually returned to my normal height to bust out 1 and a half more sets!  The point is, don’t doubt yourself because if you don’t think you can do it, then why would anyone else?


Have a good Thirsty Thursday and drink of lots water!! I’m at 40 oz., share how much you’ve had today!


P.s. Words to Avoid (updated): Skinny, can’t




Thirsty Thursday and Squats!

Hope your Thirsty Thursday has been more successful than mine!  Work is still crazy so I’ve been trying to chug these little mini water bottles, but it’s hard to keep them on hand while I’m running around making sure everyone else is hydrated:)  So far I’m at 60oz, where are you?My 4:50am wake-up call was not very welcome, and around noon I needed coffee.  Not my favorite, but taking a nap at my desk isn’t really my boss’s favorite so I had no choice!

Week 5’s workouts are pretty fun, but I’ve really been pushing myself to lift heavier lately and it’s making me so tired!  I’m always a stickler for form (I’ll redo a whole set if I think that my form was off), but lately I’ve been extra cautious to keep my back straight or fully extend my arms because I don’t want my hard work to result in injury.  Or worse, lack of progress! Gasp!

I’ve found that there is one, extremely important, exercise that people have the most difficulty with.


I love squats.  Squats, squats, squats, squats, squats, everyyyybodyyyy!  Squats are definitely my favorite exercise, and it’s taken me a long time to be able to do them correctly.  I love how they are also an incredible core exercise (compound ftw!), and they make me feel strong, the many different variations, the cardio-squats, everything! I even love how sore they make me! I’ve also attempted (and succeeded in some cases) to teach some of my friends how to do a squat correctly.  Well what I should have been doing is showing them THIS video!

This little exercise (pushing a medicine ball out while you squat) is great because it helps you overcome that hardest part of the squat: letting your hips go back.  I’ve had this described to me in many ways-you’re sitting down, you’re mooning someone, you’re making a table top with your quads-they are all great analogies, but it’s hard to put all of the different motions together.

  1.  Keep your back straight! This doesn’t mean it has to be perpendicular to the ground, but it shouldn’t be curved or rounded.
  2. Don’t let your knees go past your toes.  This is possibly the trickiest part because we want to go as low as possible, but it’s difficult to allow your hips to move back far enough to go low.
  3. Keep your knees in line with your toes.  So when your knees bend, then should move in the same direction that your toes are pointing.
  4. Chin up! It’s never a good idea to look straight at the ground when doing a squat, but don’t overextend your neck either.  Keep your neck and shoulders loose while you let your core and lower body do the work!
  5. The ultimate goal is to be able to squat all the way down and lift yourself back up, with perfect form of course:) It’s a lot harder than it seems, especially with a barbell across your shoulders!



Amanda Latona-She is a prime example of the miracle of squats!

I hope this little intro in to squats helps those who are intimidated by the gym!  The squat rack is your friend, and don’t be afraid to jump on the leg press to ease yourself in:)

Thirsty Thursday!

I hope everyone had a fun and safe 4th of July!  I got to spend it in our nation’s capitol touring historic bars and watching fireworks on the capitol building lawn:)  Drinks and explosives, sounds like good ol’ fashioned ‘Murican fun to me! I had a great time, but also strayed from my usually, very firm clean-eating principles.  I don’t feel guilty about any of the AMAZING meals I enjoyed at places like Graffiato, Good Stuff Eatery, and Rasika (yeah we went big), but I do wish I would have stuck a little closer to the norm because I’m noticing how a few days can affect me!

Fireworks behind the Washington Monument!

I tried to find some sort of healthy and safe cleanse or detox to do, but all of the detox plans just outlined how to eat clean.  I wanted to write to all of these silly magazines (who think these guidelines should only last for five days) and tell them that they should feel responsible for America’s obesity issues because they support fleeting healthy habits!

As I tripped off of my soapbox, I decided that actually reaching my goal for water consumption would be a good start to getting back on track! Usually, I drink at least 70-80 oz. of water a day, but I always shoot for 96 oz.   It’s  been about a million degrees where I am, and staying hydrated has been at the top of my to-do list.  At work we have unlimited access to a beverage room that’s full of Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, Dr. Pepper, you name it.  The only thing I grab (multiple times a day) is a handy little 8 oz. bottle.  It’s kind of inconvenient for a green waterholic like me, but it’s free so i can’t really complain 🙂  Since I don’t want to be the only one leaving the office 40 times a day because of over-watering myself, I think you should try it too! So begins the first:

Thirsty Thursday!

I’m thinking more along the lines of drinking a ton of water, not an excuse to get shammered on a weekday:) I figure it’s an easy to way to get yourself motivated in the right direction so I’m going to challenge you to join me in this goal! The benefits of water are endless, and I’m pretty sure there are plenty of low-calorie versions out there.;)  In addition to keeping your body functioning, water can serve as an appetite suppressant, improve the health of your hair, skin, and nails,  and aid in muscle/bone recovery for those who exercise regularly.

*Note: water intoxication does exist!  So let’s try not to get hydro-wasted at work my friends. If you do, I fully support you ripping your shirt off to flaunt your super-hydrated abs.

Feel free to post your daily water consumption so that we can congratulate you on your success!

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