Archive for May, 2012

Work Hard!


I’m off to see my brother get married so I am going to be pretty busy for the new few days! Enjoy these words of inspiration to tie you over until I return!

And check out my friend Melissa’s blog while I am away: The Clothes Make the Girl

One Lift At A Time, One Squat At A Time


I have to remember that when I am seeing pics of me working out, that I need to change the voices in my head. I have written about it before, probably way too much, but it creeps back when I see spontaneous pics where I am not posing.

It’s an ongoing battle of those darn pesky voices. I was doing Murph on Monday and what is distracting me is the rolls of fat I see, or how ‘thick’ I look. Just like learning the lifts – practice makes better, not perfect. So being aware of the voices and forcing them to change when they begin each time they speak up is the only way to begin the process of changing them for good. What is it about the way I think, that I can’t appreciate the fact I was doing friggin Murph and finished in a better time than last year. Oh, and forget about all of that — how about why we did Murph – to honor men and women who give it all to help us all live the way we want to live. Perspective!

It really does shock me when people come up to me and tell me Thanks for inspiring them or helping them get through a workout. I still to this day, stop and think – who am I? I love that I can help others by doing what comes naturally to me now. I love being around people and helping them discover the best in them, only because that’s how I did.  I know how meaningful it can be to hear someone say, you can do this! or let’s go – I will help you. or just great job! I know because that’s the stuff that kept me going in the beginning. I didn’t believe I could do a pull up, push up –heck I didn’t believe I could be in shape! So to hear others share with me how I am helping them – you can imagine how meaningful and heartfelt I process that.

And I love coaching – the CrossFit Kids and surprisingly – CrossFit Adults! I love meeting some of the new athletes and being able to show them they can do it, one step at a time, one lift at a time, one squat at a time.  This is true with anything – changing voices, learning a new movement, just take the first step!

The Whole Life Challenge was re-inspiring to me. We had 40 athletes – mostly new to CrossFit – join in and for most of them, really changed their life. This morning, one of the quieter competitors came up to me and said “Thank You. I lost 15lbs on the challenge and you really were helpful in that.”   They were the ones that did the hard part, and it’s the hard part that I still work on each and every day in my own battle of healthy and fit living. I just planted a seed, and gave them a daily check-in and dose of info and inspiration, but as I am discovering, sometimes that’s all people need to really move forward.

25 Double Unders
Bear Crawl
High Knees
Heel to Butt
broad jumps
High Kicks
Kareoke <sp?>

Back Squat

400m RFT
not my best: 1:57
1 RM Back Squat

Both scores are not my best — I am sore from Murph and yesterday’s WOD, so I am thinking that may have been the issue. You can’t have all good days!

Video: I Want To Marry You


I love stuff like this — real videos, with real emotions tied into it. It makes you want to believe in true love and romance!

Memorial Day Murph at CrossFit


Yesterday was a great day. Our CrossFit Impavidus community got together and did Murph so we could honor the fallen heroes. For his selfless leadership, courageous actions and extraordinary devotion to duty, LT. Michael P. Murphy received the Medal of Honor, the first service menber to receive the medal in Operation Enduring Freedom, and the first Navy recipient of the medal since Vietnam.

It was a great day with great people. Great energy and a really good, sweaty hard workout. When you are done, you feel that workout high and you feel that you can do anything. Now, a few hours later — all you want to do is nap. So I did!

This pic makes me laugh. John R. is a great athlete and the entire last mile he was trailing me –until he raced me at the end! Finish strong is what you say –and he not only finished strong but with a dramatic expression on his face.

1m run
100 pull ups
200 Push Ups
300 Squats
1m run

This year I finished in 47:33 and I used the band for 2 rounds just out of confusion really. The pull up rig was full and you had to grab space, so when there was a band there I just did what I normally do–in hindsight I should have pushed myself and done it all without. I could have.  I did quite a bit better than last year though – which is all you want to see: Progress!  Last year it was all bands –and it was cooler this year although don’t fool yourself. It was hot yesterday but not as stifling as last year!

This morning’s workout was painful after yesterday. Not going to lie — but I have some vacation coming up so I want to make sure I get my workouts in —

1 lap jog
Dynamic Stretching Drills


  • 12 Wall Ball Shots
  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 8 Box Jumps

rounds: 9 

Band Ham string stretch

Recipe: Blueberry & Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Loaf


Blueberry & Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Loaf

Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
Total time: 40 mins
Serves: 4-5
  • 1 medium banana (the browner, the better)
  • 1/4 cup pureed pumpkin (I used canned Pure Pumpkin)
  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • 1/8 cup Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips or dark chocolate chips
  • 1.5 cups roasted unsalted cashews
  • 1 cup almond meal/flour
  • 2 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Pull out your handy dandy food processor. It will make life soooo much easier. Add your cashews to the food processor to grind down.
  3. Once your get a fine cashew meal, add your walnut oil while your food processor is still on until you get a cashew butter.
  4. Then add your peeled banana and pureed pumpkin to your food processor with your cashews. Turn your food processor on and let combine for a minute or so until you have a soupy paste. Taste it. It’s stupid delicious.
  5. Now in a large bowl, whisk your eggs, then add your cashew/banana mixture along with almond meal/flour, baking soda and powder, honey, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt. Mix to combine until you get a batter.
  6. Now fold in your blueberries and chocolate chips.
  7. Grease a bread pan with some coconut oil. I used a loaf pan that was 9.3×5.2 inches (weird numbers) and it worked well. You could use smaller for taller loaf of bread, just may cook differently.
  8. Pour batter into your greased loaf pan. Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until bread is cooked through and the top of your loaf has a bit of a “crisp” to it.
  9. Let bread cool for about 10 minutes.

Be careful how many blueberries you add, it can get a bit too moist if you’re not careful.

Memorial Day Fruit Trifle


A Look At Eating Like A Caveman


HealthWatch: Plenty Of Options When Cooking For Caveman Diet

Just because you eat like a caveman, doesn’t mean you’re stuck gnawing on bones, nuts and twigs. Cooking for the Paleo Diet can include quite a tasty variety of foods.

Switching to a Paleo Diet means cutting out a lot of carbs, salts and processed foods and loading up on veggies, fruits, nuts and proteins.

HealthWatch: New Documentary Highlights Health Benefits Of ‘Paleo Diet’

A new documentary film looks at how one man’s near-death experience caused him to reexamine his diet, and return to ancestral eating habits.

Hunt’s dietary conversion led him, in turn, to an around-the-world investigation of the “caveman diet.” His journey is chronicled in the new documentary film, “In Search of the Perfect Human Diet.”

For the film, Hunt interviewed anthropologists, archeologists, authors, and top scientists to piece together a cohesive explanation of the science behind this way of eating.

He went to a dig site in the south of France to see what has been learned from the bones. Hunt found that, while our caveman ancestors were big and strong, once humans began to cultivate grains there was a change for the worse.

“This is when we dropped 4-6 inches in height,” he said. “This is when we got weak and brittle bones. This is when we got rotting around the orbits of our eyes and dental caries.”

Hunt said the introduction of grains fueled brand new diseases, adding “it was not good for our bodies. Tt was the wrong fuel and we paid a big price.”


Thank You.


Cloud Nine


Last night I scored 3 of the 40 athletes in the Whole Life Nutrition/CrossFit Challenge I lead at CrossFit Impavidus — Each one has lost over 25# in 8 weeks and had marked improvement in their strength and conditioning. Those are beyond amazing results no doubt, but for me what was even more rewarding was seeing their faces beaming with pride and happiness at what they achieved. One guy-You could just see how great he felt and just a sense beyond pride and what he had done when it was over. I could see it and feel it and I am on cloud 9 today just thinking about these three athletes. I have 30+ more to score tonight and then it’s party time for all of us!

I am so lucky to be able to help others reach their goals — how can I not continue on with my own fitness and health goals when it brings me such great inspiration?

It’s Memorial Day Weekend! Hard to believe its the start of summer and the kids will be out of school in a few short weeks. First, we head to San Fran in a week or so to see my brother, Jon, get married to the love of his life, Kristin.  So excited to be a part of it and to hang with my entire family. All of my brothers and sisters, my in-law sister Janine, my mom AND dad and my niece.  There is tension and stress that comes with being with family for a few days but it is far outweighed by the comfort of being with the people who know you the best and quite frankly, who are genetically alike. Nature is funny that way.

And to get away to San Fran –one of my favorite cities in the US with the people I love will be a welcome break.  As hard as it is to travel with the kiddos, getting away is so worth it. We all really get to bond and share experiences and I love seeing my kids with my brothers and sisters. We didn’t really hang out with a lot of extended family growing up so I love seeing my kiddos make memories with my brothers and sisters. It’s the best feeling seeing them do stuff together. I sit back and watch —

Can you tell I am on Cloud 9 today? I just feel so blessed and amazed at where I am in my life. Open the door to good things and they will come!

Today’s WOD was the WL Challenge WOD:

400m jog
Suicide Drills

800m RFT 3:47
1RM Press (10min) 90#

30 single jump ropes
20 squats
10 sit ups
total: 10  

If You Want It


I wrote this post as the final blog entry in the 2nd CrossFit Impavidus Whole Life Challenge — 

We are now one day away from the end of the challenge. How can that be?

8 weeks ago, you were different people sitting in the gym learning about what was expected of you, filtering it in your own way. Each of you had different reasons for sitting there, for signing up, for taking on the challenge.

This is the 2nd challenge I have run for CFI and I still have the same feelings as I did with the first:

  • Giddy each time I see one of you in the gym and see the progress you have made.
  • Proud of each of you for even taking on the challenge and taking the steps necessary to make a change in your life. Making taking care of you high on your priority list.
  • In Awe of some of the huge transformations that have taken place in 8 weeks
  • Inspired to keep progressing in my own journey
  • Motivated to keep up with all the amazing athletes you have become
  • Enriched by getting to know many of you

My hope for each of you is that you are different after the challenge. You are present in the choices you are making and each day you make progress towards your goals. Whatever goals they are – You have to know where you are going to get there!

If you didn’t go all in, that’s OK. There will be more challenges but I hope you had your eyes opened to the possibilities and opportunities for you to take control of your life and make real, lasting changes. I know you will do it when you are ready. No one can take the journey for you — you have to be ready mentally first. You have to want it. You have to put in the work. It doesn’t just happen.

Remember the person in the pic on the right? No, you probably don’t. That’s Steph in 2008 and could easily be Steph in 2012 had I not made the decision to change. You won’t see that 2008 Steph again either – I work each and every day to progress and continue carving out the Steph I want to be. I’m closer than ever but I hope to never stop reaching for her – always improve, always strive for better and I made it one of my goals to help others do the same.

If I can do it, You can do it. Plain and Simple and I want to help you get there — that is, if you want it.

Thank you so much for letting me play a part in your transformation and in your life. I am honored and thankful for the time and hard work you have all put in.

Never stop living life to the fullest – you NEVER know what waits around the corner!


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