a happy soul

how taking care of your body will allow your soul to achieve a higher level of happiness


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What you are capable of…

The word relaxing may not be a reliable description of what Ben and I’s vacations are like. They are more of a physically demanding experience, which I love.

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Bare Necessities Part I: Foam Roller

New Year is almost here and that means people are making New Year’s Resolutions!

A lot of resolutions are to be more active and that is great! If this is your resolution, you should also consider working to make your body more mobile. The more range of motion you have, the more exercises you’ll be able to do correctly, therefore, the more success you will have in your resolution.

One thing I couldn’t live without is my foam roller. I’m a little obsessed. I use it for 10-20 minutes everyday before I work out. Once a week I try to set aside one hour of a mobility/stretching session where I foam roll my whole body and do a bunch of stretching.

My foam roller is one of my BARE NECESSITIES!

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The next morning after this workout, my first thought, “Holy backside!”

You know when you get tired of your same old recipes and you need some variety? You check your friends for recipes they’ve recently tried. I sometimes do this with my workouts. One day I had an idea of what I wanted to do but I wasn’t getting the motivation and wasn’t super stoked about the work out. So… I just told my friend Alex I was going to do a work out with him. Yea…I’m kind of bossy. But to be fair, he sometimes says “Hey, do this workout with me. It’s not so bad,” then it ends up being ridiculously hard.

This workout works your posterior chain…meaning all the muscles on your back side. I like to call this work out “Holy backside” because that’s what I thought when I woke up the next day.

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Work {Out} in Chicago

Last week I had a conference in Chicago for work and I was excited to visit the Windy City. The only bad thing about traveling for work or even going back to your hometown or on a vacation for a few days, it can throw you out of your routine. Cooking is out of the question, your schedule is typically completely different, you’re in a different time zone,  and overall, you sometimes don’t feel like working out. I’ve done a better job of disciplining myself to make sure to eat right when I eat out and doing a workout no matter where I am.

I, of course, love my sleep. Wednesday I had to catch up on sleep since I had to get up early for the flight to Chicago on Tuesday. Thursday and Friday morning I was able to get a good work out in with my colleague, Caitlin. Out hotel was close to the Lake Michigan and of COURSE that’s what I wanted my view to be while we worked out.

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Muscular Endurance and Yoga Workout at Home

Crazy things have been happening.

1. Ben started his own personal training business BVTMobility full time!

2. We also just got a house!!

Well, we are in contract and that means we are busy with setting up home inspections, gathering paperwork to meet with the banker, and then figuring out what we need to buy. All that fun stuff. So this week, every evening is going to be filled up with something until late at night. I typically go workout right after work, but with appointments etc. I won’t be able to. Since I rather get up early to go to work instead of getting up early to get a work out in, I have to figure out a good at home workout for the evening. Plus, I love my sleep more than any normal person. Just ask Ben 🙂

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Ben has 5 kettlebells and they are all different weights. They look great in our living room. If you haven’t seen this new trend in some decor magazine, you’re reading the wrong ones 😉 .  All joking aside, they are really great to have around the home for busy times. Ben will typically take them to clients’ homes but they have a nice little home in our living room. I’ve also have been slacking on my yoga so I wanted to do a strength and yoga workout!

I wanted to test my endurance with a lot of reps and static holds.

If you don’t have a lovely bunch of coconuts…I mean kettlebells hanging around, use some old, books in a bag for squats and even the kettle bell bench press. (I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts deeldy dee..get it?! 😉 Oh, Lion King.

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Muscular Endurance and Yoga Workout

20-30 minutes long 

20 kettle bell squats

1 minute plank

1 minute hold warrior 2 pose (1 minute each side)

40 side to side lunges (20 per side)

20 kettle bell floor press

repeat 3 X

No rest between sets

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For these squats, you’ll want to drop the weight between your feet. Keep a neutral spine and SQUEEZE those glutes.
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Grass can be itchy, so if you don’t have a mat, feel free to do a plank on your hands. Elbows and concrete don’t like each other.

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This exercise really makes the quads burn. Make sure to make it a deep lunge and keep your knee from caving in.
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I always have trouble keeping my chest up for side lunges. It helps to point my toes on my stepping foot outwards at an angle, squeeze my glutes, and push my butt to my heels.

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For the kettle bell floor press, keep your arm out at a 45 degree angle and think about pushing your knuckles to the sky. You’ll push the the kettle bell directly above the shoulder. Make sure to keep your core tight and your shoulders pinned to the ground.
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Enjoy!


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Why Young Erica Should’ve Been Taught To Lift

Getting huge and growling at people while you’re in the gym is not what lifting is about. Lifting also isn’t only for men. Lifting is something all females should do, and definitely if you want to be a better athlete. I wish someone had taught a young Erica to lift in junior high or early high school for 4 main reasons…

1.  I could have avoided injury by being more aware of my body and it’s imbalances

2. I could have avoided injury by working all my muscles

3. I would have been a better athlete

4. I would have learned what my body was capable of

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Workout with the Boys

I think a girl should always have a few guy friends she can work out with. I’m lucky enough to have a few. I can’t do the same amount of weights as they can, they definitely have about 50 lbs on me but I can definitely keep up. I think all girls should have some lifting buddies that are male. But more on this with my next post about women and lifting weights 😉

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