Archive for November, 2012

This Girl is on Fire!

Posted: November 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

Thanksgiving in Seattle is usually rainy, but wow… we’ve had so much rain (downpours, really) over the last few days, it’s been hard to get motivated to run.  However, the sun came out this morning and made it very easy to get outside and burn some post-Thanksgiving calories.

By the way, today is my last day at 44.  I’m savoring it.  Tomorrow I’ll be officially “half-way to 90”, as they say.  This most likely bumps me into an older age group for many races.  (Hmm… will this be an advantage to getting into top 10 categories for my age group? Maybe. But I have noticed there are more and more fit 40-somethings out there who can give the 20-somethings a run for their money!)  Go get ’em… 45 is the new 25, right?

Anyway, I am spending my last day at 44 doing all the things I love, starting with some strong coffee to wake me up, and then kale and eggs for breakfast to prep me for a little workout:

I took in some fresh air with a nice 3 1/2 mile hill run.  Nothing too strenuous… but enough to get the blood pumping and the heart rate up for a good kettlebell workout in the yard:

Here’s my morning routine:

Warm-up with about 20 double-handed swings with the 25 lb. MedBell.  Move to single-handed swings, and then right into as many reps as possible of the two-handed release.  I take a short break here when I reach exhaustion, and then do the whole thing over again.

After 2 rounds of that, I went into the swing-flip-catch and squat: (see video if you missed it):

Cool down with some around the worlds and figure 8’s.

I’ll probably knock out some pull-ups, sit ups and push-ups before the day’s out.

Tonight… side cars, karaoke and delicious treats from Tom Douglas’s Dahlia Bakery are in order as part of a very fun birthday celebration!!



Ab Update:

Posted: November 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

5 weeks before the Tough Mudder I went on a little “ab-quest”… I wanted to see if I could dramatically improve the look of my abs before race day.   I was at it for about 10 days and saw great results… but then I injured my Achilles tendon pretty bad, and I realized I needed to focus on getting back in shape for the Tough Mudder, and my little ab-quest would have to wait.

My results were pretty good for just 10 days though, I started to get definition pretty quickly.  The first thing I noticed was the vertical cut down the middle.  I imagine the horizontal lines would have been next…  I have a picture if I can find it…

Since that time, I have discovered the “Blog of Impossible Things.”  Check it out here:  Joel’s got an interesting story and I love his perspective on life.

He’s got a whole list of “Impossible Things” he wants to achieve… a bucket list of sorts. (click here: and 6-pack abs is on there!  In fact, he has a whole website dedicated to getting 6-pack abs.  Check it out here:

Think 6-pack abs are impossible?  They’re not… and I agree with Joel, with a little dedication, you can achieve it at any age.  I’m willing to try it… who’s with me?  Do we wait until after the holidays, or do we get lean and mean before Christmas?  Anything is possible in 6 weeks, ay?


What’s up with “Top 10” lists?  If someone gives you ten ways to improve your kettlebell swing, you probably won’t remember them all during your workout.  All you really need to do is remember three basic muscle movements while swinging and you’ll improve your form and get better results.

Add these 3 techniques to your next workout and watch how your swings become more productive.

1. Suck navel to spine.  This is a yoga term, but when you apply it to kettlebells swings you will dramatically increase your ab workout.  From the starting squat position, think about sucking your belly in towards your back.   Navel to spine.  When you bring your front body towards your back body, you are engaging your abdominal muscles.

2. Lift quads to hips.  Stand with your eyes closed and imagine your leg in three parts… knee, quad, hip.  Now, lift your quad muscle up from your knee toward your hip-joint.  This is where your quad needs to sit when you’re at the top of your swing.  Practice this before you swing.

3. Tighten Glutes.  The Gluteus Medius is that outer hip muscle that gives you the sought-after cheek dimple (see volleyball player above!).  Think about tightening your glutes at the top of your swing as you pop your hips forward.  This movement becomes almost like a “hop-snap” at the top.

Add these three together and try some swings.

Other good ways to increase results?  Take fewer breaks to increase cardio strength (but never compromise form), put on good music to keep you pumped, and then mix up a bottle of MRM ReLoad to help with your post-workout muscle recovery.  Remember, you’ve got to tear down to build up!