Sunday Funday with Lorna Jane

Bro day is my favorite.

Most of the time.

It becomes my least favorite when the reps get high.  Only Jesse could make biceps suck… high reps are not my friend.

Bicep curls

Let’s back up to the fact that I’m wearing color.  Lorna Jane sent over these amazing clothes for me to check out and – admittedly – I balked at the orange.  Until I put it on.  This top is so awesome that I’ve added more to my holiday fit list…. 

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All About That WIAW

Who loves leg day?

Not. Me.

Leg day is my least favorite.  It’s why I always do it with my trainer.  He pushes me harder than I would push myself, and it’s like a mini-therapy session.  My least favorite thing in the WORLD are Hack Squats.  I’s rather do 25 reps of something (I also hate volume) than do Hacks.

You may have seen the pic below on Instagram or Facebook.  I call it “The Hack Squat: A Hate Story.” In my face you can see my progression from determination to “I might puke” to… the “poop” face.

Hacks

Because misery loves company, I brought along my baby sister, Madison.  If you have siblings, you know that everything is a competition.  I won.  Not only did she admit that I’m stronger, but we also compared butts.

31 year old vs. 23 year old butt. Just sayin’…

butts

… 

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Recovery, Workouts, and Sweet Potato Pie Waffles

Sometimes there’s no shame in staying in bed half the day.

Especially when the last couple of weeks have been chaos!

Last Monday I depicted pre-conference life.  This Monday is recovery life.  Marvelous recovery.  Recovery life started with sleep.  Since I couldn’t take pictures of that, we’ll pick up with the wakeful part of the weekend.

You are making too many sober decisions

Agreed.

… 

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It’s Growing Season

Growing can be fun.

 

It can also be scary.

Want it more than fear it

 

Some days I feel powerful.  I go to the gym, lift heavy stuff… decide to be a ninja…. 

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Going Big with Endurance

Go big or go home.

 

That’s my life’s mantra.

Why stop at 10 when you can do 11?  Or 30 when you can be 31.  If I can better myself without damaging myself, I’m going to go for it.  Today I’m bring back Work It Out to focus on endurance.

sprint2table-workitout… 

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A Day in Basel, Switzerland + WIAW

When in Rome…

Or Basel.  Whatever.

On my first full day in Basel, Lucie took me on adventures fit for a blogger!  But first we began in a predictable way… taking pictures of yogurt bowls before breakfast!

My bowl was goat’s milk yogurt (which Lucie bought special for me!) with cinnamon, Growing Naturals Vanilla Rice Protein, oats, strawberries, cacao nibs, and more of Lucie’s bread.  We took our beautiful bowls outside of a photo shoot in natural light.  Priorities!

Yogurt Bowl photo shoot… 

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Work It Out: Counting Is Hard

I have popcorn stuck in my teeth.

 

I need to work that out with some floss.

Popcorn.  Good carbs when you pop it fresh at home.  Why do I need carbs?  Because I’ve been working hard!  And I just like popcorn.  

It’s been a while since I posted a Work It Out, but I’m sharing an especially good one today to make up for it.

sprint2table-workitout… 

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Top 13 in 2013

You guys like dessert.

 

I guess that’s why we get along?

Happy New Year!!!

As I looked back at the top posts of 2013, I knew there would be a lot of sweeter dishes.  But whoa.  Of the top 13 2013 posts, 6 were sweet recipes.  What I didn’t realize was that the Work It Out posts are popular too!  I’ll do a better job to writing more of those in 2014 – I’ve been pushing it at the gym, but slacking on the writing.

Thank you to everyone for all of the visits, comments, and many, many laughs in 2013.  I’ve loved getting to know so many awesome people this year, and look forward to continuing these relationships for years to come.

Enough much!  Here’s the lucky (top) 13 to start out ’14…

Top 13 in 2013… 

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Accidental Long Runs + Mizuno Wave Rider 17 Review

Cardio hasn’t been fun recently.

 

The following post is sponsored by Fitfluential LLC on behalf of Mizuno. All opinions are my own.

I like cardio when it’s MY idea.  Having it as a mandatory daily activity during competition prep makes it a chore.  That’s a thing of the past (for now), and I have gotten the itch to run more.  The added motivation of new shoes doesn’t hurt.  Does anyone else get oddly motivated by new workout gear?!

I’ve never had the chance to try out a Mizuno running shoe.  When I got the opportunity to try the new Wave Rider 17, I jumped at it!  It’s a neutral running shoe with a good amount of support.

Mizuno Wave Rider 17

 

After all of the Thanksgiving festivities and football disappointments, I was itching for a run.  Sunday I headed out to tackle Atlanta’s hilly streets in my new Wave Riders…. 

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Competition Blues

When a big event ends it’s a little sad.

 

What do I DO if I’m not planning and prepping?!

Rest is a good thing, but it can be a hard thing to swallow.  I’ve heard people talk about feeling down after races, weddings, babies… and competitions.  This time around I’m feeling it more than I did before.  I think it’s because I know it’s going to be a long time before I compete again (more on that below).

sprint2table-workitout

Today’s Work It Out is my attempt to get over it by focusing on lessons learned at Kentucky Muscle and The Rocky, and getting excited to make improvements.

 _______________________________________________________________________________________

Season 2 Lessons Learned

1.  Support is Invaluable

Having my trainer and 2 very good friends around throughout the process made it 100x easier.  Surround yourself with positive people, even better if they can empathize.  Heather and Lisa are versatile friends – they were the perfect partners-in-crime in Napa for my 30th and for competing!

Check out the transformation from July to November (photo-editing courtesy Heather):

From Napa to the stage

From Napa to the stage

 

2. Big Shows are Tough

I’m not talking just the level of competition (though it is harder).  I’m talking mentally.  They are long, long days.  The Rocky show was the most disorganized situation I’ve ever seen.  They let too many people enter, causing the show to run so far behind that my group was just getting on stage for pre-judging when the evening show was supposed to begin.  That show began 2 hours late… by the time we went to stage again I no longer cared even a little bit.

Rock out

It was an exercise in patience, rolling with the punches.  Thank you for the lesson… but never will I ever do a Colorado show again.  In near-ish the future I plan to stick to smaller shows.  If you chose them right, they are still competitive but you don’t end up wasting so much time.  I get that they want to make money, but there needs to be a cut off for entries.  It’s not fair to the athletes or the people who buy tickets.

 

3. Celebrate Small Victories

Not placing Top 5 doesn’t mean you can celebrate the small victories.  It’s no secret that I hate posing.  It’s as far out of my comfort zone as you can get.  Lisa, who has seen me almost since day 1, watched me in Colorado and said it’s the best I’ve never done.

Now I need to work on GROWING… Open comparisons side

 

4. Growth Takes Time 

I’ve gained a lot over the past 2 years, but I’m still too small.  I feel like I look big in the gym lifting, but then you put me next to the other women and I look tiny.  My trainer, Steve, has been telling me I need to take a year off to really grow.  Competing every 6 months or so means I cut too often and lose some of the gains I make.

Steve and me

So I’ve decided to listen to Steve’s advice.  I’m taking a year off to grow.  This is contributing to the “blues” because I love having a goal line.

(I’m not always the best listener ← understatement of the year.)

 

5. Food is Good

My nutrition plan leading up to competition wasn’t so restrictive that I was miserable.  You CAN compete in a healthy way.  It doesn’t have to be tilapia and asparagus (click here for the “why” on asparagus) for months.  You never need to be hungry (I stayed full!).

Towards the end you do need to keep with super clean and avoid anything that could bloat.  For me, that meant a couple of weeks that were heavy on the white fish and asparagus.  I cooked 2 pans of it for Heather and me the day before our competition!

Photo courtesy of Heather

Photo courtesy of Heather, whose spice drawer I could move into.

 

The happy part about a bulk year is that I get to have alllll the foods!

Heather’s husband, Kirk, help me kick it off right when he made smoked salmon and eggs benedict for us the morning after the competition.  I am still dreaming of this:

#yolkporn

“I can’t wait to find out what happens on page number two.” ~Jennifer Nettles, Page #2

***

Check out Heather’s Rocky recap here.   I’m excited she’s already planning her return to the stage!

Have you ever experience the post-event blues?  What do you do to cheer up?

Who is on your support team?  Tell them how thankful you are this week!