Powerlifting - Banded Deadlifts - Harley

I love these banded deadlifts as an accessory lift. These really get the glutes and train the lockout of the lift that the same time. We did these after a regular session of heavy lifting, as a finisher.

Harley 355lbs Deadlift

Rita - CrossCore Atomic Pushup Progression

Lately I've been having a lot of fun with the CrossCore trainer. Here's one of my awesome clients killing a really hard exercise!

TransActive Fitness: Sugar and Spice, Real Push Ups are NIce

“OK...so if in our time together I am able to do two things, I will be happy. A REAL push up and a pull up.”
“Great, we will knock the push up part out today.”
I look at Mike very skeptically.
I have only ever done push ups on my knees or on an incline, never on the floor. I have 40 years of psychological and physiological training to reverse. When I was a young girl in gym class, I was set up to think that as a girl I needed modifications. Girls did the flexed arm hang rather than pull ups. Girls did push ups on their knees rather than planked. Girls climbed the knotted rope rather than just the rope. Girls played softball rather than baseball, flag football rather than full contact, aerobics/dance/cheer rather than hockey. I was told early on that boys were stronger in the upper body, and as smart as I am, some part of me just believed it. It became true for me because I trained my body using these “modifications” rather than going for the full expression of the activity. I stand on my hands and lift 180 lb people over my head and I still had never pulled off a push up.

Mike points to a bar for me to use for push ups, and at this 45 degree angle 15 of them are not problem. We move on to other things, and we come back to a bar that puts me at a 25 degree angle. It is harder, but also not hard. I work on another one of his requests and I come back to a stair step on two risers, this time it is 15 degrees and the last two are hard, and totally doable. Next time I come back to it it is just the riser on the floor. My arms are tired from all we have been doing..I look at MIke..

“Ya think?” “Yeah I do.” “Shouldn’t we have started on the floor? My arms are tired.” “You wanna go right to the floor then? Go ahead. You arms are definitely strong enough. It is engaging the core and getting over it in your head. Give me 3.” Skeptically I take to the floor, and much to my surprise, I not only do 1, I not only do 3, but I could have done a couple more. Mike catches on.
“Could you have done more?” “Yes” “How many more?” “Two I think” “Ok than next round give me 5 please.”
And I do. Leaving with 18 push ups under my belt that day. I am already 50% closer in doing things I had in my mind I could not do. I am glad someone didn’t believe me... 

Competitor Blog: Where did I put my groove?

After a long hiatus of couchsurfing and eating food like a pig post party it is now time to put my plans into motion. There is some what a mental block to getting back to the gym and back to tracking my food. But the food is an old familiar hat. Weigh, track, and don’t go dark. My husband who meal preps for me, is right back in the swing of it too. I really thought the food was going to be harder than it has been. 

It seems that I am struggling with finding the best fit for my workouts. When I see Mike it’s easy because I don’t have to think up what to do. He tells me what he wants and I belly ache and try to barter my way into a better deal and end up doing what he requested anyway. Making nasty faces all the while. But on my own I go to the gym at 5:00 AM. I have to be out of bed by 4:30 and out the door by 4:45. There is no time to snooze or glare at Facebook. All of my items have to be ready to throw in the car and go; I pack my bag the night before. If I forget one thing it throws the whole rhythm off. I loathe mornings but for the most part I have this down as a science. Except for that one time I magically snoozed halfway through my workout time and didn’t realize it until I was brushing my teeth. In an effort to keep myself on track, I write a workout plan in a notebook the night before (or weekend before if I really have my life together) so when I get to the gym I am not fruitlessly lifting random stuff and hoping for the best. I have approximately 45 minutes to an hour to work out. I need to be on my way to the showers by 6:00 am. 

Now I go to a different gym than the one I train with Mike at, these mornings. We can leave it nameless; there are only like 4 options in town you can probably figure it out. I am starting to become so disgruntled at the gym. First: it doesn’t have heat which isn’t super horrible because I will warm up but it is annoying. I apparently have the metabolic system of a reptile because the cold gym makes me want to curl up in a corner and go back to sleep. Second: it has been extra full lately. Yes, I realize it is probably a lot of New Year’s Resolutioners in there and they are doing good things. I am happy they are there, for them, but not for me. I don’t like people, especially people anywhere from wake up time until 9:00 AM. It’s best not to even glance in my general direction until after then. Third: no one in the building knows how to rack the weights or get them remotely close to where they should be or have them in pairs! I mean God forbid I dream ascending order AND two of the same weight in the same place. I could see them maybe getting out of order throughout the day but there is zero effort by staff to rectify this chaos. It drives me bananas; wandering sad and forlorn about the gym. Looking for that sad, lost, lonely dumbbell. Eating into my carefully calculated minutes.

In the grand scheme of things the above issues are really minor inconveniences. Would it be nice if they were different of course! But there isn’t any reason I can’t work out even without them being different. For now I will continue doing the best that I can there. I am looking into and trying to puzzle out different options that will fit both my family life and my gym life. I hope in the coming weeks I can find my gym groove and get back into the grind of it. I have goals to accomplish, rogue dumbbells be damned.