High Bar

Giving Back To The Community

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flag footballI had one heck of a Yoga headache after yesterday’s class, so I looked it up and it’s a common malady after a hot yoga class when you are a beginner. I made sure to drink a lot of water afterwards but couldn’t seem to break it.  After a few sessions, it seems to not happen anymore so let’s hope that’s the case with me.  The yoga is working – my workout on Weds and today felt better. My body wasn’t as stiff and sore and I am starting to feel renewed once again! We also had a nice surprise this morning: we got to run outside. We have been cooped up for way too long this winter, so even though I am not a fan of running, it was nice to feel the cool breeze as I did the best I could.

Scotty and I are coaching Nate’s flag football team this season. I don’t know a ton about football but I know how to motivate kids (at least I think i do!). Last night was our first practice and although most of the kids are brand new to the sport, they are a good group of boys that really want to learn. There is something about being outside and spending time mentoring/coaching kids in the community that really makes you feel like you are making a difference. I am sure that the kids in  this league aren’t the average kid in America, since they live in one of the richest counties.  It’s our way of giving back and hopefully making an impact in their lives. Hopefully we can win some games too!

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Be Inspired

In the Quiet Spaces Your Inner Light Shines

Kindness Matters

Honey Maid: Love We made a commercial about what makes families, family. And we received a lot of comments. See what we did with them.

Workout

Warmup
Bench @ 105#
WOD
3RFT

  • 400m run
  • 21 KB Swings
  • 12 Pull Ups (I did ring rows)

What A Crazy, Busy Wonderful Weekend We Had

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What a crazy, busy wonderful weekend I had. Friday evening, I met up with some of the awesome people from Highbar CrossFit for a social happy hour/dinner. It’s always fun to be able to talk and hang out outside of the gym because if our coaches had our way, we would always be laser focused on the workout. And I know, I know – it’s important but I also like chatting away.

Coach Takano Weightlifting Scott and I didn’t stay out too late because I had to get up early and go to the Bob Takano Weightlifting Clinic at Highbar. Bob Takano is a hall of fame lifting coach who has coached some really impressive athletes. He’s the kind of coach that based on his experience, he can just look at you and know instantly where your faults lie and how to advise to fix. Whether you can fix it or not, well that’s another issue. He’s also the kind of guy that is very blunt in his approach – doesn’t really sugar coat his message, so I am glad I have a thick skin in general. One of the points he talked through was the idea of an athlete and a more recreational athlete, who is just looking to get fit. That’s been the topic of debate in the CrossFit circles for a while. I got the impression that Coach Takano could give a crap about all of that controversy. He loves what he does and if there are new communities who want to learn more about weightlifting, he will be happy to oblige.

I learned quite about technique and I realized how long it has been since I have done any Oly Lifting. My form was totally off and some of my general faults prevent me from making some progress. For example, my posture sucks. I have Kyphosis – which is a curving of the spine that causes a bowing or rounding of the back, which leads to a hunchback or slouching posture. I have mentioned my posture issues before and they have been around since before kindergarten. I look at old pics and wish that someone had insisted I sit up properly! Just look at my Kindergarten school pic below. I know I was cute and had flair, but man, my shoulders were all hunched in even then. SIT UP STRAIGHT YOUNGER STEPHANIE!!!

Kindergarten School Pic

What do I need to do to address my back issue? Coach Takano told me to focus on doing a lot of Overhead Squats. So, I am going to start doing that and add in some mobility work to help combat any more effects that may arise down the line. It also looks horrible –when I see pics that I have not posed for, I look schlumpy and fat. And if I can do something to prevent me from looking frumpy, I am going to do it!  A quick Google search produced a bunch of results on how to heal the hunchback. Here are a few from some sites that I respect:

Scope it out 5K groupThere is always some work to do and I love it!  And I was super tired and sore from 6 hours of weightlifting and slept super well Saturday night.

Scope it Out 5K

A good night’s sleep was seriously welcome because I had to get up early and head into DC to run the Annual Scope it Out 5K for Colon Cancer Awareness! This is the 4th year I have run it and we always have a ton of fun. We run the race and then head out to eat brunch and partake in bloody marys and/or mimosas. Hannah Bea ran it again this year too – and I was so proud of her for finishing it along with her daddy! Five years cancer free is a serious reason to celebrate!

Scope it out 5K Finish Line

Here’s a link to the complete photo gallery: 2014 Scope it Out 5K. I finished in the top 25% which was suprising since I have been strugging with my running lately. It wasn’t an impressive performance – doing a 10 minute mile, but I finished alongside my pal Lani and didn’t have an asthma attack, so it was a win in my book! 

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Every Day We Should Read One Good Poem...

Workout

Rest Day!

Essential Oils for Asthma?

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Breathe- Essetial Oils from DoTerraOne of my friends at Highbar is a chiropractor and he has been noticing my asthma attacks lately. Last week he suggested trying out some essential oils -specifically one by DoTerra called Breathe.

doTERRA Breathe Essential Oil Blend – Antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, expectorant, cell and tissue repair, asthma relief; using Breathe can give relief from colds, bronchitis, sore throats, sinusitis, coughs and respiratory congestion. Decongests sinus passages, combats lung infections and relieves allergy symptoms.

I am pretty open to trying more natural methods to address common maladies and discomforts, so I ordered it and started using it last night before I went to bed. I used a few drops and rubbed it on my chest. Immediately you can smell the eucalyptus – and I did feel as if it was helping me breathe easier. Sort of like using Vicks Vaporub all over your body when you are really congested. I will keep you posted on whether or not it is helping, so stay tuned!

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Comfort Zone Quote

Workout

545p class yesterday:

Mobility
Pushups/Pullups
Back Squat
10m AMRAP
clean
bb lunges
bb front squats
renegade rows

6a class this AM

Mobility
pushups/pullups

5 rounds
deadlifts
burpee slam balls
slam balls
bear crawl
Core work
DB Rows

 

 

Time to Feel Good Again

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It’s odd to say but Daylight Savings Time doesn’t really bother me. I woke up this morning in a pretty good mood and am not super tired. I wonder if that will last though…. hmmmm? I love getting an extra hour of sunlight to help lighten my mood. Let’s just hope that the whispers of snow aren’t true for this week. I have seriously HAD it with WINTER.

I am going to be super blunt here. I have totally fallen off the wagon with my eating and every time I snack or eat something that I know I shouldn’t, I feel bad about myself. Not bad enough to stop mind you. Over the weekend, I started being really honest with myself. I don’t feel good. Mentally and physically. And my hand eczema has returned with the re-introduction of eating too much dairy. My hands are an itchy, dry mess and they burn. I am also tired, my joints ache and when I see pics of myself, I think I look puffy. I have gained 10 pounds if not more since  being laid off from my job too. I am not happy with all of that. What’s interesting is I am not alone – I have talked with and read about others feeling the same way. Maybe it’s partly because of the long winter we have had and it’s also because it’s way too easy to fall into old habits…

Be Happy AgainMy friend Leah said it best:

I’ve learned it’s very easy to neglect your diet, and slip back into old habits. The more you pay attention to what you eat, the easier it is the feel good. I’ve really noticed how bad I feel lately and I know it’s all what I am eating. Time to feel good again!

A huge part of feeling good again is being around great people. This weekend, I went to my dear friend Liz’s baby shower. What a great friend she is to me – and I am so happy for her, her hubby and her daughter. I can’t wait to meet the newest member of her family in May!  It was also a great opportunity to be with some of the amazing ladies in my life who inspire me and make me feel loved – Caitlin and Lani.

Liz   Cait and Lani

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Get Inspired

Get Closer to Your Goals

Kindness Matters

3-Year-Old Girl (and Her Disney Princess Dolly) Donate Hair to Help Children With Cancer

Workout

I am really struggling with my workouts and in my heart of hearts, i know it’s diet/nutrition related. I am going to get on the ball and straighten this shit out…

  • Mobility
  • Pull Up Test
  • Push Ups
  • 1P Cleans
  • Full Cleans

WOD
EMOTM 10 mins

  • HSC
  • Pull Ups
  • even min: Wall sits
  • odd min: Planks

The Winter That Never Ends…

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Tired of SnowThis week has been really odd for me – just feeling really sluggish and unmotivated. I think it’s the lack of sunlight and all this snow. I am so sick of winter – I don’t mind the seasons, but man, this winter has gone on forever.

I wanted to follow up with my post from earlier this week about beauty and celebrity with this Slate.com piece about Kim Novak and Hollywood standards –

It’s Horrible to Be an Old Woman in Hollywood, Kim Novak Edition

To me it highlights how sad it is when woman are driven so far as to drastically alter their appearance to try to hold on to their youthful appearance. It’s probably even worse when you base your self worth and value on your looks. If Kim Novak feels great about the way she looks -good on her. The mean spirited comments and reaction speaks volumes about society’s obsession with youth – which is fueled by the media. It’s a never ending cycle —

 

I am thinking of revamping my blog a bit and organizing it differently — still in the early stages of thinking it through but don’t be surprised if one day you visit and poof! it’s looking different….

Scope It Out 5K Washington DC Presented by Chris4Life

logo_scopeitoutAre you busy Sunday, March 23rd? Want to do a 5K with me in DC?

I am running in the Scope it Out 5K Washington DC Presented by Chris4Life with Team Hoagie’s Heroes to raise awareness and money for colon cancer research. My silver fox of a husband Scott Hoaglund is five+ years colon cancer free!! This is the fourth year our family and friends will be running in his honor!

I would love you to join us for the run or if you can, donate to this very worthy cause!

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Difficult People Show you Who you don't want to be.. Livefitandsore.com

Look your Best, Embrace the Experiences

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I was thinking about the Oscars and the mundane questions that celebs get asked at events like that.  I read that there was a push to ask more insightful, less looks focused questions called Ask Her More.  It was funny to hear Kevin Spacey get asked questions usually reserved for the lady celebs. He was so out of his element. I get that many women out there get excited to learn about the fashion and the styles that are worn, but in recent years, it seems to have gotten out of control. Women are being treated as if they are no longer people, just models and mannequins. I appreciate a good couture look myself – however I also realize the work and illusion that goes into it. Do young girls realize it though?

Kim KardashianThen it got me thinking about someone like Kim Kardashian. She is known and ‘famous’ because of the way she looks. It’s all tied to her beauty – what happens when that youthful beauty starts to fade? Does her entire self worth go down the drain? It’s kind of sad if you think about it – every outfit she wears, every pound she gains, every mistake she makes – gets documented good and/or bad. I don’t envy someone so tied up into their physical attributes.  Does anyone know if she actually makes any sort of valuable contribution to society? I am not saying she doesn’t, but no one sure as hell talks about that. Sure, she makes a ton of money from looking the way she does, but is it worth it? There are a ton of studies out there that prove money doesn’t buy happiness. Can you imagine the constant pressure she feels to look a certain way all the time? And how hard it is to constantly be the target for cruel jokes and criticism?

I bet she will be the type of celeb that constantly tries to keep her youthful appearance by trying the latest cosmetic procedure, and end up looking like she’s trying to hard. Embrace aging — a little help is one thing but so many of these aging stars just don’t know when to quit. Anyone notice Kim Novak at the Oscars? Oy vey….

Personally, I don’t have the time nor the desire to look like a beauty queen 24/7. There is so much more to life — look your best, embrace the experiences.

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Kindness Matters

Ohio boy turns found fortune into act of kindness

Get Inspired

Surround yourself with people that reflect who you want to be

Workout

Pushups/Pull Ups
Mobility Work
100m shuttle run for time
10m AMRAP
Wall Balls
Bear Crawls

 

Aging and the Distortion of Beauty

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I have had a rough morning and it’s not even 8A! We did some new super sets yesterday morning and my shoulders and deltoids are not appreciating it very much this morning. Then when I got into the gym, I noticed a strong odor of polyurethane which for any asthmatic, is not really welcome and it caused me a lot of issues with the endurance stuff we had to do. So many issues, that I had to stop a lot during my workout which pissed me off. I was hacking up a lung and had to run outside to clear my lungs.

no makeup dayI want to talk once again about how the media distorts our perception of what aging and beauty really looks like. If you watched the Golden Globes and saw Diane Keaton up on the stage – well I think she looked awesome. She isn’t the youngest woman but she looks age appropriate and I thought, beautiful. She is a spokeswoman for l’Oreal, which is awesome. However, they are not showing her how she really is, which is a shame. I get the lighting and makeup effects and am all for it – however, the digital airbrushing goes way too far.

“Diane Keaton at the Golden Globes compared to Diane Keaton in the L’Oreal commercial that aired during the Golden Globes.”

Yesterday, the Today show folks went without makeup and asked others to do the same to prove that we are all normal, regular people underneath all that gook. Here I am this AM, after my workout – no makeup. Who the heck has time to get all dolled up before a 6A exercise sesh? Not this girl…

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Do what you can with what you have.

Workout

Pull ups/Push Ups
Agility Drills (Dot drills, shuttle run)

WOD

  • Slam Balls
  • Lunge Walks
  • Broad Jumps
  • Shuttle Runs

February is the Dark and Dreary Month

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I am worn out — today’s workout was brutal. The kind of workout I didn’t want to do, and while I was doing it, I wanted to stop and when it was over — I didn’t feel better. I am so sore that I was having issues doing some maintenance lifting today. I definitely should have listened to my body and stayed in bed and rested. The lunge and core party I had at Highbar on Sunday was intense and I didn’t start feeling it until yesterday afternoon and then it hit hard this morning.

I’m considering taking of a few extra days this week to really recover. February is a tough month for me in general and I have been using my light therapy when I am at my desk to help me ward off the blues. I think I may need to use it more. I am trying to keep a level head about it and recognize that it has to do with the the winter blues and attack it that way as opposed to giving in to the feelings and being a grumpy mope.

Here’s some info about light boxes and light therapy as a way to treat Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD):

Light therapy boxes can offer an effective treatment for seasonal affective disorder. Features such as light intensity, safety, cost and style are important considerations.

The Amazon link below is an affiliate link to the Light Box I use – which I find easy enough to take with me, is light in weight and has a timer, so you can set it on your desk and forget about it.


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good day to have a good day

Workout

Mobility
Maintenance Strength: DeadLifts
WOD
3 Rounds

  • Slam Balls
  • Burpees
  • Box jumps

Thoughts On President’s Day

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Happy President’s Day!

abe Lincoln QuoteLast night during dinner, we went around and discussed who our favorite president was and why. Both kids said George Washington – for the usual reasons. Scotty said sorta jokingly that Ronald Reagan was his for ending the cold war. That led us to a discussion about what the Cold War was — and we never got back to favorite presidents. For the record – I am torn between Thomas Jefferson and Abe Lincoln.

I was at Wegmans yesterday and I am always interested in what people put in their carts. The couple behind me in the checkout lane had a bunch of processed foods and a big box of heartburn remedy stuff. I chuckled to myself that maybe they should consider what they eat to help them cure their heartburn instead of looking at taking a pill to help.  My cart is in no way perfect – but I am of the mind that most if not all of our maladies are caused by what we eat and how we move or not move.

Also, I wanted to mention something that connected with me recently. I have mentioned that I have an issue with not drinking enough water through the day. A friend of mine, Kristen, mentioned during the Real Food Wellness Challenge that when she didn’t drink enough water, her teeth grinding issue returned. Isn’t that something?! I never thought about that — I have a teeth clenching issue that pops up fairly regularly and after doing some research -sure enough one of the causes can be dehydration! Ah ha!  Amazing how things are connected…

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Workout

  • Max Pull Ups
  • Push Ups

5 rounds

  • Shuttle Runs
  • DB Snatch

Get Inspired

Believe in yourself

Happy Valentine’s Day: Lucky to Have Love

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Highbar CrossFit Heart for Valentine's DayHappy Valentine’s Day to everyone out there. It doesn’t matter what kind of Love you have in your life— as long as you have Love. It’s mushy but true.  I am lucky to have the Silver Fox in my life – who loves me at my worst and at my best. This is the 19th year we are together for Valentine’s Day. And during those years, it hasn’t all been hearts and flowers but I wouldn’t want to be with anyone else.  Marriage is work -plain and simple and it has peaks and valleys. Being with someone for a long time means they get on your nerves regularly but in your heart – you can’t imagine your life with anyone else, nor would you want to. I am not one of those people who expects a trail of rose petals at the door when I come home – even on Valentine’s Day. I just think treating one another with respect and having a real affection for your partner is key. Scotty makes me laugh, makes me feel special, feel cherished and wanted. And he lets me be me. I thank the stars above for bringing him into my life. Together, we have created a wonderful life, with awesome kids and try to be good people each and every day. What more can someone ask for when it really comes down to it?

I was thinking about how it has been about five months since my job situation changed — I didn’t realize that at the time it was going to be for the better but I sure do now. I was reminded about how toxic my previous situation was this week during a meeting I was attending for one of my clients.

I was asked to attend a meeting about the progress the team has made with social media marketing with the CEO of the company. The SVP that I work with asked me to attend because she said that he would love my energy and knowledge. When I arrived, the group was waiting outside the meeting room. I knew everyone but this one guy. We all walked in and the guy introduced himself to me, “Hi, I’m so and so”, shook my hand and sat down. We were waiting on a few people — I assumed the CEO was one of them. The CMO arrived -I have met him before and we began. It occurred to me that the one guy who introduced himself WAS the CEO of the company. Totally didn’t get that until we were underway. During the meeting, he asked a lot of questions about what we are doing and why- but it was all in the vain of him understanding the purpose and the benefit. Not once was it to question our knowledge or decisions. The meeting flowed well and the team allowed me to go through most of it. The reason it was such a reminder to me about how bad that other company had become was because meetings NEVER were like that there.

To even get to meet with our CMO was rare – reserved for a few — Forget about the CEO. You were not trusted to be in the room with him unless it was a large crowd and he was reading from a prepared speech. The CMO was always late — ALWAYS and there was a pecking order. Everyone was there to prove they knew more than the person next to them. The CMO questioned every decision, every action &  not from a place of her trying to understand but because in her mind – she knew more than you and didn’t trust that you could make a decision. Many times -whatever progress or decision you made was reversed or changed at the drop of a hat.  The whole culture was cover your ass all the time. New people were brought in – many times they were consultants – and they were automatically given more credence than you, even if you had been there for years and they had no background in the industry.  You could fall on a sword for a decision, but if the consultant disagreed or wanted it different – it was made to be.

People were not nice to each other — you could be the nicest person in the world, but in that culture and workplace, you could easily change up to be the biggest ass in the room. Imagine being questioned about every move, not empowered to do a job you are responsible for, have no inspiration or true leadership, be disrespected day in and out, and not trusted. It’s not hard to understand how it is toxic. But just like any abusive, unhealthy relationship that endures – you start to think that’s normal and it’s only when you are away from it and see what healthy can look like – it becomes clear how bad it was.

It’s just another affirmation of the path I am heading now…

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Now this guy gets it — let’s reevaluate our values people!  Gay people are a part of our world – I tell my kids, if one person loves another person – no matter girl or boy- how can that be bad? Love is a great thing – no matter who loves who.

Dallas sportscaster’s shocking response to Michael Sam coming out as gay

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Where there is love, there is life

Workout

Strength

  • Press 2×5
  • Push Press 2×3

WOD

  • 4 Rounds
  • Box Jumps
  • Burpees
  • –rest–
  • 50 wall balls

 

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