Tag Archives: jessicamacho

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.


Box-Crash: StoneWay CrossFit

8 Jul

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: You will not find community like that of CrossFit. While passing through Seattle, WA, on this whirlwind cross-country tour, I was invited by Stoneway CrossFit box owner, Scott Rodriguez and fellow tweeps Katie and Heather to drop in for a WOD with coach Jess Fleming.

I took them up on the offer (and the opportunity to meet some tweeps in person!) and scheduled my touristy day of Pike Place Market, Space Needle, and Puget Sound around their 5 o’clock WOD. We started off with stretches and dynamic warmup which included wall walks (which, by the way, are harder than they appear!!) Then we worked in some 3×3 sets (at prescribed percentages of our 1RM) of either squats, deadlifts, or press.

Thanks to Katie Chasey for snapping this pic!

And then it was WOD time:
200m sprint
100 situps
75 pushups
100 air squats
200m sprint

Let me just come out with it and make it known: 2 months of nearly non-stopping roadtripping, less-than-ideal Paleo nutrition, and no WODs make for a very out-of-shape girl. But, coach Jess kept the encouragement coming and everyone there was SO upbeat and encouraging.

And here is the part where I say it yet again: You’re not going to find community like THIS anywhere else.

HUGE thanks to the StoneWay crew for letting Ryan and me box-crash! It was much-needed for me and very much enjoyed.

My Epic Intermission

15 Jun

My life has been nothing short of a whirlwind of the epic variety for the past month. For starters, Ryan and I have moved from Philadelphia to Colorado! (Actually, we are STILL in the process of relocating. We can’t move in to the home we’re renting until August. Oh, poop. I guess we’ll just have to travel to kill time. Didn’t expect this entirely but… me complain? Never!)

So here is a snapshot of what I’ve been up to since May 8th and a preview of what I’ll be doing up until August 1st.

Obviously, my CrossFit 5x/week schedule is, well, a little off-schedule. I can tell I’m weaker and slower but I keep reminding myself that in addition to being an end in itself, CrossFit is also a means to an end. I CrossFit so I can mountain bike, trail run, snowboard, hike. And I’m currently doing most of that right now so I’m content. But, oh, I do miss my CrossFit sessions. Can’t wait to get back under a bar.

On The Prowl(er)

4 Mar

I’m feeling the urge to blog today because I might die tonight. No, really. Joe just posted our scheduled workout for tonight and I have Prowler sprints at 6:00 pm. “What are you doing tonight, Jess?” Oh, you know, pushing The Prowler and trying not to puke.  (Gone are the days when I looked forward to Fridays.)  My lack of excitement is warranted: The last time I did Prowler sprints, I almost didn’t make it home.

The Prowler is a deceiving little torture device.
p-(roll the ‘r’)-OWW-le-(roll the ‘r’)

Don’t do what I did and get it mixed up with the similarly scary-looking but sometimes FUN Cougar.

Unlike a cougar, there is nothing fun about the Prowler.  You’re going along, doing fine, just pushing the Prowler and BAM! It’s like hitting a brick wall. All of a sudden the leg muscles go on strike. My calves cramped up so bad, I thought I had rigor mortis. It’s like an arena death scene out of Spartacus with bodies hunched up or lying all over the place, but without the blood and boobs.

This pic is the exact opposite of how I feel after pushing the Prowler but I had to show you what my face looked like on the body of Crixus.

I survived my first Prowler experience but after struggling back to my apartment with a THROBBING headache, I had to lie with my head on the cold kitchen counter for nearly 20 minutes to fight off the nausea.  I’ve never before been so glad I had an empty stomach. In fact, nausea is guaranteed. Ask my fellow CrossFit Love member Chris. So, I know it’s not just me.

If you ever have the opportunity to push a Prowler, do not do as Joe recommended and YouTube “Prowler Flu.” Actually, you should totally watch this stuff:

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.)

1 Week Down (A Lifetime To Go?)

22 Feb

I just wrapped up the first week of my super strict 30-Day Paleo challenge.  WHY the heck would I eat ONLY: delicious meat, eggs, fish, a ton of water, loads of vegetables, some fruits, a little nuts, and NOTHING ELSE for 30 days? The decision was easy when I considered the following:

  1. Though I was arguably one of the strongest chics at my previous globo (personal, and admittedly arrogant, opinion here), I felt like THE slowest and weakest girl at CrossFit Love. I just want to perform better. So, I’m playing catch-up and a good place to start is with the Paleo Challenge seeing as the other members just wrapped up their 30-day Challenge.
  2. I’ve been thinking about trying a strict Paleo Challenge; joining CFLove just catalyzed the decision.
  3. I’m testing my 1RM’s in  5 weeks and I want to set some PR’s. I need food that fuels!

To be honest, I haven’t had trouble “giving up” any “foods.” The real challenge for me has been making sure to eat enough. The intensity and volume of my workouts have increased so I’ve been just PLOWING through food like you would not believe.

So, in case you’re wondering why I’m sipping on some “Dihydrogen Monoxide on the Rocks” when we’re at The Standard Tap or why the heck there is rabbit and duck in my freezer, now you’ll know.  Not gonna lie, it feels good to eat almost as much as a grown man while my Hollister denim mini fits better than ever. Now let’s see what this does for my deadlifts.

I Paleo Hacked Chipotle

15 Feb

Don't fret Paleo friends... there's meat under the salsa.


I recently came across Robb Wolf’s The Road Forager blog posts which have been a life saver when traveling. He pretty much Paleo Hacks all sorts of restaurant foods. I tried the original recommendation of “Burrito Bowl, no rice, no beans, double meat, salsa, and guac” but it was way too much meat for me to finish. How sad. I wish I was a little bit taller, I wish I was a baller… I wish I could put down meat like a man. Plus, I wish I had more vegetables (good thing “veggie” isn’t a Paleo expletive like it is on Epic Meal Time.)

So, now my order is a (Meat) Salad, hold the rice, hold the beans (insert weird look from Chipotle employee here), two scoops mild salsa, one scoop hot salsa (because mama likes it hot.)  I’m probably going to Paleo Hell for skipping the guac but, listen, the first and last time I got guac at Chipotle I ended up feeling grossly nauseous. Plus, once I unintentionally laid my hand in seagull poop and it looked EXACTLY, I mean ex-act-ly, like guac and sourcream mixed together. So, I think I’ll pass on seagull poop in my food.

If you find yourself passing through Philadelphia, my favorite Chipotle is the one located here.  They have a super friendly staff that aren’t stank with the ingredients and they play swanky music with a W Hotel vibe which makes eating Paleo extra sexy.

Big Things Poppin’

12 Feb

©Jessica Camacho

That picture sums how I was about 2.5 weeks ago: lethargic, foggy in the head, UNMOTIVATED, unable to wake up, sick of these East Coast winters, groggy all freakin’ day, and out of energy.

I started noticing some not-cool things:

  1. I couldn’t go as hard at the gym. Just didn’t have the energy to.
  2. I didn’t even WANT to go the gym. (Highly unusual of me.)
  3. Bodyfat increases (naturally, given the above.)
  4. -10lb strength decreases on my squat and deadlifts

I’m a fan of: If you don’t like something in your life then PONY UP AND CHANGE THINGS. So, I sat down and literally wrote down some concrete goals:

  1. Get back into mountain biking shape – work the quads, hamstrings, all the good stuff.
  2. Squat, deadlift, bench press, and shoulder press every week to regain my strength.
  3. Benchpress my bodyweight in 2011.
  4. Get back into trail running shape – I should be able to run a 10k race on the fly without training for it.
  5. Work on the handstand pushups.
  6. Get back up to 3 consecutive strict muscle ups.

Then I set out to figure how to make all that happen. On a whim, I decided to search #CrossFit hashtag on Twitter. One thing hashtag led to another which led to this convo with Joe Petrusky, owner of CrossFit Love. (And, it just so happened that CrossFit Love is about 0.8 miles away. Puzzle pieces falling in place?  I think so.)

And the next thing I knew, I’m under a bar demonstrating a squat, doing interval burpees, finding my max pushups, shoulder pressing, doing sandbag sprints, bench pressing, doing clean & jerks, and learning how to use a kettlebell (and this is just my first week.) I needed this so badly. You have no idea. I’m going to be the next Mini Macho Camacho.

Don't laugh at my game face.

Chomp On THIS…

10 Feb

This blog post is dedicated to my girl Shannon Wright who, though allergic to wheat and gluten, continues to eat wheat products because…? Yes, I just put her on blast.

Not to get all preachy but… NUTRITION: It’s kind of a big deal.  Really, though, who doesn’t want to look good nekkid?  Here’s my unsolicited opinion: If you want to makeover your outsides, a good place to start is by making over your insides. I’m not trying to be philosophical.  I mean literally make-over the inside of your refrigerator.

Last month when I gave up whole grains (gasp!) and legumes (double gasp!), I needed to fill the rest of my meal with more vegetables. (And this is the part where I lose the Epic Meal Time crew.) Up until that point most vegetables ended up as science experiment gone awry in the bottom of my refrigerator.  (A secret that I keep from my grandma who grew up during The Depression.)

So, I made a system for an organized refrigerator that has made all the difference.  I went to Target and stocked up some containers. Then I just got chop happy and started prepping all my veggies.  SERIOUSLY?  Why didn’t I think to do this sooner?!

Any extra veggies that don’t fit in the tubs, go into the now-dubbed “surplus bins” at the bottom of my fridge:


I also buy 3-4 leafy green lettuces at once (spinach, escarole, butter lettuce, arugula, red leaf lettuce, or green leaf lettuce.) So, now when it’s time for lunch, I bust out my Super Salad Buffet options to make one of these Big Ass Salads and all I have to add is some protein like hard boiled eggs or leftover chicken.  And when it’s time for dinner, I just reach in, grab a few tubs, pop open the lid, and add some veggies to sautee or roast or steam as a side dish.

Eventually, I’d like to replace these veggies with in-season vegetables from a Community Supported Agriculture co-op. But for now I will do what I can. Because, oh, this is too easy NOT to do.

(Can someone help me step down off this soap box?)

Sweet Diggity

28 Jan

Don’t be fooled by the rocks guns that I got,
I’m still, I’m still Jenny Jessi from the block.
Used to have a little, now I got a lot.
No matter where I go, I know where I came from.

I’m in a J-Lo mood after watching the hilarious American Idol tryouts this week.  Speaking of “used to have a little, now I have a lot” I had the opportunity to test out my max pullups (strict, no kip) in a friendly competition among friends.

Thirteen.  Thirteen strict pullups.

Man, I remember feeling defeated and crying under the bar ’cause I thought I’d never get my first pullup.  And now… Thirteen!  And it feels GOOD.  Kind of like THIS good: