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I Moved Dot Coms

6 Sep

I’m very sorry to do this to my readers and subscribers but I’ve recently moved domains. (I’m actually not THAT sorry because the new URL is new and improved! Sorry I’m not sorry.) My new Girl Walks Into A Bar(bell) blog is over HERE at it’s own dot com!

I’ve made sure to include a subscription option at the new dot com so, if it’s not too much trouble, follow me over. I’m in the process of converting the garage into a gym!


House Of Air

20 Jul

Screw Chuck-E-Cheeses (cheese is so not Paleo, anyway.) House of Air is where a kid (and everyone else) can be a kid.

About a year or two back, I came across gymnast and CrossFit coach Carl Paoli‘s video submission for American Ninja Warrior on CrossFit’s mainsite. Completely intrigued by flips (and “stuff”) and being the Google extraordinaire that I am *cough*, I later came across this video of Carl jumping at an indoor trampoline park on Brian McKenzie‘s, creator of CrossFit Endurance, blog . Wow, I just made myself sound like a total internet stalker. Awesome.

Living in frigid Philadelphia at the time, I figured House of Air would be a perfect excuse to visit sunny California and San Francisco. And so I went with Ryan last week. We got some ultra chic wrestling slash jumping shoes:

And we rented a board because, hey, why not practice some snowboard jumps, flips, and grabs while we were at it?

And then we got right to it:

I found that KStar‘s hip mobility WODs come in quite handy when it comes to board grabs. Sorry for the in-your-face ook picture (I’m gonna get an earful from Mom later this week) but I’m merely demonstrating the importance of hip mobility here. My personal favorite is his 10-minute Paleo chair squat test. I sit in this position in the living room regularly. I like to think it helps with board grabs.

My only complaint about House of Air is that it caters more to young children during open jump times, which is fine, it’s fun. It would’ve been nice to have an older kid/adult area to practice some stuff without hearing, “Sir, no flips over the blue mat,” “Hey, you guys, you have to land on both feet before flipping,” “Are you hurt??” I mean, I get, I do; the workers were just doing their job and safety is important. I’m just saying we’re adults and we signed a waiver – it would be cool if we could practice some techniques away from 7 year olds. Nevertheless, we both had a blast. I worked on air awareness and grabs while Ryan nailed some flips. I think I’m putting a trampoline on the wishlist.


1 May

I’m blaming my lack of recent blog posts on my ultra chaotic major life changes. And when I write “major” I mean “this is (more) mayjah” than David Beckham hanging on the beach sipping on Pepsi. But more about my life in due time.

I’m dropping in to jot down my recent PR’s established during “PR Week” at CrossFit Love. I’ve been consistently working on my four major lifts for only less than a year so, as Craig “The Z” Zielinski pointed out, these are probably not my true 1RM’s just yet. But, it’s good starting point and I won’t lie, I like that I’ve graduated into Rippetoe’s Strength Standards “Advanced” category.

Bodyweight: 108-110#
Squat: 155#
Deadlift: 205#
Press: 85#
Bench: 105# 110#

I was most disappointed in my squat but most pleased with my bench press. Such is life. Sometimes I can’t have it all (all at once.)

This vid, filmed by Ryan and me and compiled by Joe, has been posted elsewhere on the interwebs but here are my CF Love teammates (including Tweeps @deckerra, @polobear716, @laurenancona @JeanineDESQ, and @klhorn22) setting some PR’s:

I sat down with Joe and jotted down some goals to eventually accomplish. I’m not going to work on all of these at the same, that may be detrimental. For now, I’d like to focus on my developing just my strength. Call me naive but I think the stronger I am, the faster I’ll be able to move weight around. It takes a lot longer to develop strength than cardio, metcons, and technical skills like double unders, so it makes sense to focus in on strength now.

Good Things Come in Sets of 100

23 Feb

I’m starting to notice a trend at CrossFit Love. It appears our S&C coach, Joe, is slightly obsessed with the number 100. We just seem to do ONE HUNDRED of, oh I don’t know, everything. In fact, 100 of (insert exercise here) is our cool down, our “extra credit,” our  lil’ somethin’ somethin’ to remember CrossFit Love by.

In the past 2 weeks, I have easily done atleast 100-200 situps, not to be confused with “ab crunches,” on 6 different occasions.  I’m talking full on “Allll the way up, Jess.  I want your chest to touch your knees. What number are you on?” (75.) “You’re talking too much and not working hard enough.” (The thing is: We do so many situps, it’s hard for me to keep count. So, sometimes I talk outloud about forgetting what rep I’m on.)

I can guarantee you, though, that I certainly DID NOT lose count when Joe had us do “100 Pushups for Time” last week. Because, you know, we’re all expected to eventually be able to do 100 full regulation “I want to f***’n HEAR your chest hit the ground” pushups in sub 5 minutes. And if you’ve seen my chest (or lack thereof) you will understand how big of a deal this is. I’m suddenly regretting getting rid of that water bra. By the way, my time on those 100 pushups ended up being 10:01. I’m looking forward to cutting that time by half (I do mean that…. mostly.)

Last night? Oh, yeah, I was busy doing an “accessory exercise” of 100 standing single-arm band rows… on each arm. No biggie. (Actually, it was a biggie. My biceps and lats were burning something fierce.)

My unsolicited opinion on the matter? I think this “100 of everything” thing is working. I won’t deny that I do feel stronger. So, it appears that good things really do come in sets of 100.  But GREAT things come in sets of 300:

(Don’t tell Joe I said that; the last thing I want is to be greeted with a “300 Burpees for Time” WOD when I walk into class next week.)

Meet My Mom

15 Jun

Meet my Mom!  (I know this is my CrossFit blog but there are some successes that far exceed (in my opinion) setting a new deadlift PR!)

About 10 years ago, my mom was diagnosed with Type II diabetes.  Though, up until very recently you never would’ve guessed because, well, she indulged in sweets as if she was not at all diabetic!  I believe in practicing what you preach so I always did my best to set a good example by kindly declining a trip to IHOP, ordering steamed veggies no butter at restaurants, and putting in my 20 minutes of dreadmill cardio followed up with strength training (before I started CrossFit) when I went home to visit.  But, eventually, I had to make peace with the fact that she probably wouldn’t pass from this world without cataracts, amputated limbs, and perhaps even a bipass.  Because, at the end of the day YOU CAN’T HELP SOMEONE THAT DOESN’T WANT TO FIRST HELP THEMSELVES. Family included.

So, imagine my sheer delight and excitement when my mom, MY MOM, my donut-loving, pastry-indulging, ‘hey want to grab breakfast at Ihop?’ mom, called me up and announced that she was ready to make some lifestyle changes.  This all happened about a month ago and at first we were calling each other 5 times a day, checking in, making meal plans, testing blood glucose levels.  And at around 30 minutes a phone call, you do the math but all I know is I’m really glad I added Mom to my T-Mobile MyFaves for free, unlimited calling!

Within a month of Clean Eating and discovering that almost all processed carbohydrates spike her blood glucose levels into the 200 mg/dL  (Read:  “HOLY HELL!  GET ON A TREADMILL STAT!”), Mom has managed to lower her “bad” cholesterol, lower her body fat, she no longer feels nauseous after every meal, and has brought her daytime average blood glucose down from 250 mg/dL into the 120-130 mg/dL range.  AMAZING!

Here is a picture of my frumpy OLD mom:

And HERE is my energetic, clean-eating, treadmill-jogging NEW mom!!!  (Oooh la la!  Just look at those legs!)

Honestly, the change in her attitude, her approach to nutrition, and her decision-making is like night and day!  My kids are going to have not just a grandma, but a grandma that can play with them, take them for a jog in a jogging stroller, cook them healthy meals.  It brings tears to my eyes!

Old Mom: Never checked her blood glucose levels because ignorance is bliss.
New Mom: Diligently monitors her glucose levels before meals and 2 hours after.

Old Mom: Made excuses for not exercising.
New Mom: Goes jogging almost every MORNING!  Completes interval jogs and even jogs outside!

Old Mom: Ordered dessert at restaurants.
New Mom: Orders extra veggies, no bread… and skips the dessert tray entirely!

Old Mom: Stopped for chinese takeout and ordered fried egg rolls when she was hungry while out.
New Mom: Packs a lunch bag with healthy snacks and fruits so she never has to stop for fast food.

Old Mom: Catered to everyone else’s palette and cooked to please everyone else.
New Mom: Takes a stand in the name of health and cooks nutritious dinners.  And if no one else wants to eat healthily, they can make dinner themselves!  (Heck ya.  To copy McDonald’s slogan, “I’m Lovin’ It.”)

Old Mom: Ate white rice 3+ times a day.
New Mom: Does not eat white rice… AT ALL.  (This is a HUGE deal!)

Old Mom: Stayed in her pajamas all day.
New Mom: Rolls out of bed and into workout clothes… with matching shoes.  ;o)

Old Mom: Never left the house.
New Mom: Is energetic and on-the-go with her packed fruits and salads.  One time she stayed out for 7 hours straight (totally NOT what I’m used to) and I about had a HEART ATTACK because I thought something awful happened to her.  She could’ve told me ahead of time that she was going to a Health Fair and met up with a nutritionist!  :oP  So happy for her, really.

Let me tell you, I am one damn proud daughter.  These lifestyle changes take time, commitment, and dedication.  I could go on and on but it’s 10:00 am here in Philly.  Which means, it’s time to call Mom and get the “I ate oatmeal with blueberries and scrambled eggs for breakfast and I’m going to get on the treadmill for 30 minutes!!” report.

Blame It On The Pop

1 Jun

I can’t get enough of DJ Earworm’s 2009 “United State of Pop “.  It helps me keep cadence on a dreadmill run, it helps me put on my poker face for some early morning barbell boom boom pow.  It’s just an awesome workout remix, if you’re into pop beats.  I love it so much that I now have an iPod playlist dedicated to mashups and remixes.

Before I Get Started…

21 Apr

Fitness and CrossFit has recently become such a big part of my life that I felt the need to start a new blog to chronicle this new journey of mine.  I realize there are repercussions to putting my personal info on a public domain but, regardless, this is still my space, my journal.

I absolutely appreciate and welcome unsolicited advice/critique on my form and techniques… as long as you actually know what you’re talking about.  This is not the place to let me know that you think what I’m doing is wrong or stupid.  Figuring that out is all part of the journey.

And so my journey begins…