Dear CrossFit: It’s not you, it’s me

You’ve probably noticed that I haven’t been posting about CrossFit lately, and there’s a reason for that. I’m done with CrossFit. Not like forever, but just for now. Since I started my new job, I was unable to make WODs with my new work and spin schedule.

A lot of people have been asking what I think about CrossFit lately so the point of this post is to provide an honest, non-biased opinion (there are so many CrossFit fanatics out there that will just tell you “CROSSFIT IS AWESOME!!!!!” but not really give any insight.. soo I’m hoping to rectify that).

I was nervous to start CrossFit. I had heard about the workouts- I knew they were going to be intense. I knew I was going to be doing things I had never done before, and that I was going to be sore constantly. But I was excited about the challenge and genuinely loved every single one of my workouts. I felt like I was pushing myself out of my comfort zone, and others around me were pushing themselves just as hard. It’s an incredibly inspiring environment. And- you do something different every day. Your body is constantly being challenged, challenged, challenged. I really don’t think you could ever hit a plateau doing CrossFit because it is so varied. Overall, I surprised myself with how much I loved CrossFit.

But despite my love for CrossFit, I’m not doing it anymore. I’m so thankful to have experienced this new workout phenomenon and will take many aspects of the WODs into my own personal workouts and training sessions with clients, but physically can’t keep going to the box. Here’s why:

MjAxMi05NTczNGE2YTFmM2NhN2E4

via Someecards

As much as I enjoyed the workouts and how hard I was pushing myself, at this point in my life, it’s not sustainable. If I wasn’t spinning 5-7x a week, I would probably try to continue doing it, but it was just too much on my body. I wasn’t giving myself proper rest and really can’t risk not being able to teach since it’s now a big part of my income. My goal for the upcoming months is to focus on yoga and becoming more flexible, rather than building muscle. Speaking of which- in my 5 months at CrossFit, I gained muscle. A fair amount of it. Now, I know there are so many people out there who say “CrossFit girls don’t get bulky” and I agree with that. But guess what? CrossFit doesn’t make you bulky, your BODY makes you bulky! I know plenty of girls who CrossFit who are petite and not bulky (Erica being example #1). But I have the type of body that puts on muscle fast and furious, which is a blessing and a curse sometimes. I remember when I did cross country for a semester and was totally psyched about losing all this weight by running all the time and I ended up gaining 15 lbs of muscle, straight to my thunder thighs. Yes, I know this is a totally vain reason for not wanting to continue a specific workout but I’m really not trying to add any more muscle than I already have. One of my good friends told me “well, just don’t lift as much when you go” which is easier said than done. Of COURSE you want to be pushing yourself and lifting heavier each time you go in there. I’m not going to go to CrossFit and pick up 10lb dumbbells to deadlift, let’s be serious.

That’s the other thing about CrossFit- you can’t just casually go sometimes. You need to GO and commit to it. You’re not going to get any stronger, faster or better by just going once a week or every other week. It’s sort of an all or nothing approach. And I’m sort of falling into the “nothing” category. Womp womp.

And finally, one of the biggest reasons why people stay away from CrossFit- the cost. I simply can’t afford to go. I was lucky enough to have a free trial through my awesome Fitfluential family, but on my own, I wouldn’t be able to sustain it. That being said- I TOTALLY understand why Crossfit is so expensive, and don’t think it should be any other way. You are essentially getting personal training, gaining incredible skills and have a huge support system that holds you accountable and motivates you. You push yourself way harder than you would on your own, and that right there is priceless.

So there you have it.  If it wasn’t for my new job, my spin schedule, my stupid traps and thunder thighs and a bigger wallet, I would still be CrossFitting. Please don’t be sad, CrossFit. It’s really not your fault. It’s me. Maybe at another time and place we can be together, but for now, I regretfully have to break up with you, and truly hope our paths will meet again one day.

Has anyone else experienced this painful breakup?

-Emily

 

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Embarrassing/Awesome Jams

First of all- thank you SO much for all of your awesome comments, FB messages and tweets about my big news. It means a lot, and solidifies my reasoning for delving into this world full time, so thank you again!!

Second of all- I know we’ve sucked at posting lately. There are a few things happening. A) we are making some exciting new changes to SEGR, making it more legit and all sexy and shiz. B) That takes up more time than I thought it would. C) I am in the middle of a career change, and have a lot of loose ends to tie up. D) Erica is traveling, which means she goes MIA in upstate NY and I don’t hear from her in weeks. I know those are lame excuses, but apologies! Exciting things are happening and coming your way SOON.

Speaking of exciting and awesome and amazing, I’ve been playing some ridiculous jams in class lately that need to be shared.

I had a request to do a Whitney Houston ride last week. I’ve never been a huge Whitney fan, but these remixes are the balls. So energetic, upbeat and fun. I was jealous of everyone in the class who wasn’t wearing a microphone so they could sing. Oh, and of course Bobby Brown had to make an appearance.

All of the remixes are amazeballs, but this one is probably my favorite. Just the perfect mix of cheesy techno. Nsst, nsst nssstt.

 

By my own request, I did an early 2000’s playlist. There are SO many jams from this era! I love doing throwback rides with songs you haven’t heard in forever, that you probably don’t want to hear every day. But they’re fun every once in awhile. Until I start repeating them in my classes.. whoops.

Highlights:

Great song for a quick road, throw in some arm pumps. Also, great to set an intention at the beginning of class. “You gotta get through this”. Sidenote- a fairly new rider was in my class, and sitting directly in front of me, and he was SO into this song and it was the best feeling ever.

Despite Ms Aguileria’s recent shenanigans, homegirl still kills it on the mic. Her voice literally gives me chills, and this song was made for booty tapping. This song also generated a lot of “whoooo”‘s and general enthusiasm from the crowd.

That part about me being obsessed with early 2000’s music… yeah it happened again. On Sunday, Aly and I did a Redeux Ride (two bikes, two instructors sharing the stage) and our theme was One Hit Wonders. Naturally, I gravitated towards my favorite era. Aly’s half of the playlist was equally as epic, throwing in some 80’s and current stuff.

Favorites:

I’m basically obsessed with every song on here. It was so fun planning this because although I love this era, there were TONS of one hit wonders I forgot about. But I literally cannot stop listening to “Candy”. I got some slack because APPARENTLY Mandy Moore had other hits besides this one, but I’m not concerning myself with that. “Candy” is the only one that matters. I used this for a hill, but now that I’m listening to it (again), I’m realizing it’s perfect for jumps, crunches, pumps… oh yeah, this will be making more frequent appearances. #sorrynotsorry

This beat is awesome. Did this for a hill, out in position 3, with little oblique crunches, side to side. Elbows out. Leanin’ like Cholos.

What am I missing? There must be some more embarrassing jams out there that I need to incorporate on a weekly basis (if you’re one of my riders, you’re probably reading this thinking “NOOOOO! Don’t give her any more!!”). Regardless, let’s hear ’em! 🙂

-Emily

 

 

Strong vs. Skinny

So, Erica got all inspirational yesterday, and I’m about to get a little emotional/slight feminist (which is very unusual for me. Not the emotional part, but the feminist part. I’m sort of like a dude 24/7)

My whole life, I’ve been muscular. I came out of the womb with broad shoulders (my mom won’t let me forget that) and thunder thighs. I also apparently came out of the womb sucking my thumb, and immediately downed two bottles after being alive for about 3 minutes. So really, not much has changed. I’m still muscular, and I’m still hungry. All the time.

Homegirl, I can relate. via Nike

In high school, when I got really into working out, my goal was to always get “skinny”. I would purposely only use 5 lb weights so I wouldn’t bulk up, did at least an hour of cardio a day, cut calories, and kept a food diary. At my thinnest, I weighed 125 lbs, and was always so frustrated that I wasn’t losing any more weight (I’m 5’3, so 125 is still slightly above average than a “normal” weight for my height. I’ve definitely roid-raged out on doctors who have told me I should weigh less. Test my BMI, bitch, THEN tell me I need to lose weight). The point is- I would obsess over that number on the scale. I’d weigh myself every day and cut my food intake and up the cardio if I wasn’t satisfied.

 

It really wasn’t until the last year that I became comfortable with my body. I’m always going to be muscular, and I should embrace that. I’m always going to have to get my jeans altered so they fit my booty and my waist. I’m going to go Hulk status every now and then and rip my shirts with my huge stupid shoulders (this has happened more times than I’d like to admit. It usually ends in tears). When I’m on the spin bike, or at CrossFit, I feel so empowered (feminist alert!!) because I feel how strong I am and I see the things my body will do and I see others around me doing the same thing. It’s inspiring, motivating, and it’s expected.

via Body Confidential

But I can’t help but feel frustrated and let down sometimes. I hate myself for leaving the gym feeling all badass and sexy, and then I’ll pass a girl who’s 5’10 and weighs less than I do, and my self esteem drops. I notice how my thighs are rubbing together and how short and stumpy I feel. I immediately start comparing myself to her, and want her bod (not in that kinda way, but in the way that I’d like it if my thighs didn’t rub together and my shoulders were proportionate to my body and my ass didn’t require its own zip code). I know there must be tons of you out there who suffer the same thing- and it sucks. Lately, I’ve been catching myself do it, and have been able to snap myself out of it. In my world, I’ve noticed a HUGE shift towards “Strong is the new skinny” which I obviously love, but there’s still a huge part of society that pressures us into being rail thin (feminist alert part 2!!) and I think it will take awhile for all of us to collectively break that mold.

Can you spot the difference between these two pictures?
Hint: One is an Victoria’s Secret model. The other is not. I know,
it’s probably difficult to tell which one is which. 

But guess what? This whole situation is sort of a Catch 22. Through my Fitfluential family, countless blogs, and Instagram, I’ve come across dozens of girls who are actually trying to GAIN weight and bulk up because they’re too thin. And they are just as frustrated with not being able to gain weight as I get sometimes with not being able to lose it. So, embrace it ladies (feminist alert part 3, last one). Get off the scale. Stop counting calories. Stop comparing yourself to others (especially those in magazines- you wouldn’t BELIEVE the power of Photoshop). Be happy with your bod. Be confident. Be strong. The bottom line is to BE HEALTHY.

Was that too deep? Did I just become a feminist? Am I being crazy? Anyone else out there cope with body image issues here and there?

-Emily

Playing Catch Up

It’s Wednesday. Last time we posted was on Friday. NBD. No but seriously, it is a big deal.  WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THIS WEEK/THIS YEAR/THIS MONTH?! Let’s recap on the weekend, shall we?

Jams
I didnt post my playlists on Friday, mostly because I was too busy oogling our CrossFit Hottie of the Week, but also because I was so swamped that I didn’t have time for new music last week and re-used some playlists. I did make a sweet Maroon 5/Rihanna mashup playlist for my Thursday night Reboot Advanced class. Such a fun ride. I usually play longer songs, but having a bunch of quick ones made for a fast paced class and it flew by.

Food
Definitely splurged big time this weekend. It was my boyfriend’s birthday, and we did it up big! I surprised him with a dinner at Mooo… a steakhouse we’ve been dying to try (and how amazing is that name?) Totally splurged on sides (parmesan crusted onion rings? truffled french fries? yup), cocktails, wine, and a big ass filet.

I even put on a big girl outfit and heels! Things got CRAZY. And I hate to disappoint all my Paleo peeps, but the weekend of splurging didn’t stop on Friday. Sunday night, the actual night of his birthday, we had a mexican FEAST at his mother’s house. Enchiladas, cheese for days, and birthday cake.

Vanilla cake, chocolate icing, and Rolo’s and Heath bars stuffed in between. If this isn’t the definition of Paleo food, then I don’t know what is.

On a totally unrelated note (PSYCH) I got hit with a stomach bug on Monday afternoon and was out of commission until last night. Although there is a bug going around my office, I’m sure my weekend of stuffing my face didn’t help either. I literally was on my couch for all of Monday afternoon and most of the day Tuesday. It was great to get some rest and reset my system, but I ended up teaching last night and this morning. I needed to sweat it out, and I get SO antsy sitting around, and there are only so many episodes of “Teen Mom” a girl can watch (don’t tell me I should have been more productive with my time.. you know you do the same thing when you have a sick day…!) I’m back on track today with eating clean and am feeling almost 100%. And my birthday isn’t until December, so I have no reason to eat cake until then 🙂

I’m trying out a few new workouts this week that I’m very excited about. Will be sure to post some recaps and reviews. Also- I have a huge burn mark on my arm from doing faux muscle ups at CrossFit last week. The straps kept hitting my arm a certain angle every time I’d go up, and I didn’t realize it was just casually ripping away a layer of my skin. Everyone now thinks that it’s some sort of hair straightening accident or cooking accident, but I want to let everyone know that I’m way too badass to spend my time in the kitchen or making myself look pretty. This is a motherf*ckin’ battle wound, bitches! From doing muscle ups! (no one has to know they were the ones from the ground…. shhhh)

Happy Humpday!
-Emily

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Jams of the Week

So, we’re not quite ready to reveal our awesome other Friday feature.. but in the meantime, we got jams for days.

Saturday 9/22: Reboot 9:30AM

Highlights: Ready to Go and Wild Wild West. Yeah, judge me. Will Smith kills it!

Monday 9/24: Reboot Climb 6:00PM

White Panda themed ride was SO much fun (minus Lobsterdust for weights). Seriously, they’re my favorite mashup artist. Check out all their jams here.

Tuesday, 9/25: Reboot 5:30PM

Highlights: No Sex for Ben and Claudia Lewis… that’s actually a pretty hilarious sentence. Apologies to anyone out there named Ben or Claudia. No sex for you!!

Wednesday 9/25: Reboot 8:15AM

This one’s a repeat! Old highlights are Breathe and Go Go Girl

Thursday 9/26: Reboot Advanced 5:30PM

Highlights: Battleflag, Orinoco Flow ( Props to Rate Your Burn for these!) and Dance With Me. New artist (to me at least!) alert- Le Youth. REALLY really great stuff. Incredible buildups, good stuff to bounce to. Head boppin’ for days.

Oh, I also told my class to “POUND IT OUT” last night on the bikes. So on that note…

Happy Friday! Holler with your favorite jams this week!

-Emily

 

 

 

 

 

 

FRIDAY JAMSSSS!

I’ve been getting a lot of requests lately to post playlists from class (I feel like SUCH a celeb, let me tell you) so I’m going to be posting them on Fridays. With very excited titles. See above.

I really am pumped about my jams from this week. Some new, some old, some epic 90s, and some Gangnam Style. Yeah, what of it??

Got the week started Monday with some 90’s jams (and replayed it Wednesday morning… sorry I’m not sorry) There’s a story behind this: Saturday night, I was DD (per usual) and was practically falling asleep at the wheel driving home at 1AM (I always think about if I got pulled over.. “Officer, I don’t drink! I just work out too much and can’t stay up past 10PM! I swear!!). I needed some pump up jams to keep me awake, and Drunks McGee boyfriend put on “How Bizarre”. I immediately perked up and the rest of the ride commenced into a 90’s dance/singing party. And then I was wide awake because I was so excited about 90’s music and started planning my playlist while trying to fall asleep.

Highlights: I Want You- Savage Garden and The Bad Touch- Bloodhound Gang. “I Want You” has a sneaky fast beat- perfect for flat road/sprints/jumps out to 3. “The Bad Touch” has a friggin AWESOME beat. SOO good for arm pumps. Wildly inappropriate. I had to be really careful to avoid saying my normal things like “pump it deeper, pump it harder!”

Highlights: Lose 2Night- The White Panda and In My Head- David Guetta ft. NERVO. I’ve played “Lose 2Night” a few times before, and I forgot how much I love it. Great for booty tapping, hill, or a sprint, or all of the above. “In My Head” is new to me, and I love it. I chose it for a sprint. Amazing lyrics (I just pretend that it’s not about some dumb relationship drama and it’s about beasting your workouts)

Tell me I’m mad ‘cause in my head
We work you out
You don’t mess around
And the storms do come out
‘Cause in my head
Nothing’s too hard
We fight for us
And we never give up

Thursday night Reboot Advanced class. New class that was added to the schedule and I’m psyched about. Those extra 15 minutes are a killer. I’m formatting them to be more endurance driven rides- so lots of back to back action happening. Back to back jumps, hills, sprints, weights, you get the picture. Harder, better, faster, stronger baby.

Highlights: Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough (Gigamesh Remix)- Michael Jackson and SOS- Rihanna. “DSTYGE” was SUCH an awesome warmup. I love long warmups- was able to incorporate some speed, jumps, and a hill. I am such a spaz. I know. And “SOS” has a great beat for tappin’ those booties. I feel like Rihanna songs get so overplayed, but then you can wait like 2 years and re-introduce them again without people having a conniption.

Oh, and I also played this. I think next class, I’m just going to have everyone get off the bike and actually do the dance.

So there you have it. My spastic taste in music for the week. What’s everyone else listening to??

We also are going to have a new Friday feature coming up.. Stay tuned 🙂

-Emily

 

 

 

Weekend Recap

This weekend definitely felt like the last weekend of summer. I could tell because I wasn’t immediately sweating everywhere I went. Bittersweet. But, it was one of the best (and not just for non-sweating reasons). Little photo recap so I’ll try to refrain myself from rambling too much 🙂

Friday night, Katie hosted all of the instructors from Recycle at her AMAZING condo in the South End. It was such a fun night. I truly love all of these ladies, and it stinks (literally) that we normally only see each other coming to and from classes. It was great to all be together, minus our boss Cate.  She did send us some love in the form of iTunes gift cards, which Hugo (Katie’s ridiculously cute Frenchie) enjoyed. However, his attention span waned as dinner went on, more wine was consumed, and the conversation switched to girl talk. Anyways, delicious food, great company. I was bummed to have to bounce and drive down to the Cape, but CANNOT WAIT for our cookie swap in November. Helllooo cheat night!

The Cape. Last weekend down there. It’s crazy how people clear out right after Labor Day weekend. There were only 2 people in my class, 1 of whom was my boyfriend that I had to drag out of bed. Needless to say, he wasn’t pleased. He straight up just didn’t do the arm weights. Got schooled by a 50 year old woman. NBD. I digress. It was so much fun being down there this summer and having an excuse to go to the Cape every weekend. This weekend was the perfect last weekend. It was just the 2 of us, a rare occasion since his family’s house was packed this summer. We spent Saturday bopping around- shopping, lunch, ice cream, and Starbucks. Perfect day. It was so nice not having to rush anywhere or do anything!

Saturday afternoon, we went to one of our best friend’s Cape house for a big family dinner and hung there all night, eating, drinking and playing cards (I sat out on the card game. Fun fact about me- I HATE playing cards. Like, hate it. Have zero interest. Unless it’s Spit. Spit rules, and I’m so good at it. Most other card games, I get bored within .25 seconds and have zero interest in learning how to play most games. Party pooper over here. Go ahead and judge me.. just don’t ask me to play cards..) HOWEVER. I was very content just hanging and chatting 🙂

Sunday was perfect. Sundays are currently my only rest days, so I cherish them. I slept in until 10 (insanity!!) and shot out of bed and was like “I need pancakes in my life. Right now” Off I went to Stop N Shop. I ended up buying Bob’s Mill Gluten Free Pancake Mix because I was too lazy to make my own Paleo version. It was DELISH. Prob a bit heavier than a Paleo mix, but I was splurging. We added blueberries and EnjoyLife chocolate chips. Had some fresh fruit and organic bacon. Om, nom nom. Rest of the day was spent walking around the golf course and snuggled up on the couch reading Game of Thrones.

One of my favorite weekends of summer. Great people, amazing food, and some relaxing. Oh, and the weather was fresh to death. Why did I just say that?

How was everyone else’s weekend? How’s everyone feel about FALL?!

-Emily

 

 

 

{Intention}: Not Taking Anything for Granted

I love having Erica back on the blog. She’s way funnier than I am, and sassier. And is infinitely better at Crossfit, and life. We have a fun workout date/eating session planned for next weekend, and might even make our first VLOG, so get ready for some awkwardness!

On a more serious note. It was hard to go through yesterday without constantly thinking about the victims lost in 9/11 (unless, of course, you were NBC and decided that Kris Jenner’s breast implants were a more newsworthy topic). All day long, I just kept thinking about how everything can change in a split second. You never know what’s going to happen, and can’t predict for these types of things. Whether it be a horrible, massive terrorist attack, getting rear ended leaving a parking lot, getting fired- shit happens.

I’m a self proclaimed anxiety basketcase. I always assume that the worst is going to happen at any given second. Getting on a plane? Definitely going to crash. Boyfriend is going out drinking? He’s definitely going to choke on his vomit when he’s sleeping. I’m babysitting? The baby is definitely going to fall on their head. I know. I’m crazy. If you didn’t know that by now, now you do. But, I’ve gotten  A LOT better with dealing with my anxieties and my stresses lately. I think I can attribute a lot of this to working out constantly, and releasing tons of energy and built up tension on a spin bike or during a WOD.

Another huge thing that has helped me get over my anxieties is just realizing that I can’t control what happens. You never can. So what if my plane crashes? What can I do about it? Realistically, it’s NOT going to crash and in the .00000001% chance that it does, there’s nothing I can do about it. So why stress yourself out? It’s not worth it to waste any ounce of energy worrying about that kinda stuff.

I taught spin last night, and in honor of 9/11, my intention for the night was to take advantage of being there. How lucky are we to be able to exercise and release all this energy and just BE ALIVE? It sounds silly and kind of cliche, but every day could be your last. I’m not saying to go out and go sky diving every day, but make the most of it. Whether it be on the spin bike, or in your job, or in your relationships. Do everything to the best of your ability. Don’t get hung up on the small stuff.Don’t waste any time. Don’t slack off. Don’t take advantage of anything. Don’t take ANYTHING for granted. Your health, your body, your loved ones. Appreciate everything. Every single day. It’s sad that events like 9/11 have to remind us to do this. Something like 9/11 could happen again tomorrow (I pray that it doesn’t) but we just never know.

Played this for the warm up. Gotta hear it for New York.

Also played “Power” by Kanye. I love this song because it gets me pumped and it’s a great hill, but the lyrics are actually really amazing (minus him swearing every other word) and especially thought the ending lyrics were very powerful:

Now this’ll be a beautiful death
I’m jumping out the window
I’m letting everything go
I’m letting everything go
You got the power to let power go flow

Intention for today and for always- don’t take anything for granted.

-Emily