My Pursuit of Happiness and Skinny Jeans

My journey to a smaller jean size

The Friday Five

Another week is done, and it’s time for…

1.  Joyanne finished 9th at The Games!  Friggin’ AMAZING!!!  If you don’t know who I’m referring to, see yesterday’s post Joyanne’s Games to get caught up.  The Day 3 events were tough, but Joyanne did great and represented CrossFit Newmarket Central, and Canada, like a champ.  Congrats, Joyanne!  You are my CrossFit hero!
Games finals

2.  I’m going golfing in Michigan in August.  Last weekend was my EWGA Chapter Championships.  I played on a scramble team with 3 friends and we won the division!  We actually had both Low Gross and Low Net scores, but it’s only the net that really matters, since that’s the score that takes our handicaps into consideration.
scramble C

So now, we are off to Michigan August 15/16 to play in the Semi-finals for the region. 

Not only did we win at the golf, but I’m pretty sure had there been a “Best Dressed” award, we would have won that too!  Don’t we look cute in our matching outfits!
chapter champions scramble

3.  I’ve discovered a new beverage – The Bevé!

During my ball hockey season, we all took turns bringing drinks after the game.  One of the girls was raving about the Bevé and when it was her turn, she brought a cooler full of them!  I’m not usually a cooler fan as I find they are too sweet, but OH. MY. GAWD!  These things are amazing.  Nice and refreshing and just a hint of sweetness.  I discovered these just in time, since my golf course no longer carries Corona Sad smile thankfully they do carry Bevé, so all is good on the course again! Smile 

4.  I’m checking out a new cookbook.  I’ve seen tons of reference to The Paleo Kitchen on blogs and pages I follow, and all reviews have been great.  Before I bite the bullet and buy it, I borrowed it from the library. 
paleo kitchen
It’s written by Juli Bauer (of PaleOMG) and George Bryant (the Civilized Caveman).  I’ve had a quick flip through the recipes and they all look delicious.  I’m thinking I may need to buy my own copy.  I’ve heard they have it at Costco, so I will stop in there at some point this weekend and see if I can grab one.

5.  I’m hoping for a relatively quiet weekend.  Last weekend I was busy on both Saturday and Sunday and it felt like the weekend flew by.  This weekend, other than CrossFit this afternoon and tomorrow morning, I don’t have anything else planned.  I’m hoping to get some menu planning done, go grocery shopping, and maybe do a bit of food prep.  I imagine I will watch a bit of the CrossFit Games at some point too!  Other than that, the big plan for the weekend is to relax.  I can’t wait!

Happy Weekend!

Got anything exciting planned?


Joyanne’s Games!

Everyone involved with CrossFit knows this is a big week in the CrossFit World.  It is the CrossFit Games in Carson, California.  All the big names are there:  Annie Thorisdottir, Julie Foucher, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, Rich Froning, Jason Khalipa, Dan Bailey and many more great athletes. 

They are great athletes and are a ton of fun to watch…but my focus these games is watching one athlete in particular:  Joyanne Cooper.   Coming into the games, many of you may not have known who Joyanne was.  Hopefully, after the last few days, that will have changed.

cooper 20

(Photo credit:  Shooting Monsters Photography

Joyanne is a member of CrossFit Newmarket Central, in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada.  MY BOX!!!  She is absolutely AMAZING!  She finished 20th in the world in the master’s qualifier (women 45-49) and earned a spot at the Games.  Notice the cool shirt our Box did as a fundraiser for her!

She has been working so hard at the gym, training like a beast and it is paying off huge.  After 2 days, here is where she sits:

leaderboard day 2

That’s right….she is sitting in 5th place at the end of 2 days of competition.  How friggin’ AMAZING is that! 

Today is Day 3 and there are 2 events left:  Down and Back Chipper and the Masters Final:
chipperfinal wod

The Chipper goes at 2:35 EST and the final at 5:50 EST.  I will be glued to my computer watching the live feed and cheering Joyanne on, yelling encouragement at my screen that she will not be able to hear, but I hope the good vibes will be felt as she gives it all she’s got for these last 2 WODs. 

Regardless of what happens today, and where she places on the final leaderboard, Joyanne is already a winner and is my absolute CrossFit hero. I couldn’t be more proud of her.  And I’m sure that’s true of everyone at CFNC….especially the group that made the trek to Carson to cheer her on live and in person!

joyanne and the gang

If you aren’t doing anything at 2:30, be sure to go to and watch as Joyanne tackles event 7. 

Feel free to yell at your screen.  I know I will be!


14.5 Recap

This post is a bit late…but I had a busy weekend and I ran out of time yesterday too.  Anyways, better late than never…here is my recap of 14.5.

So, I was dreading this bad boy pretty much from the second it was announced.  Not that it was a great surprise. Everyone knew it would be Thrusters and Burpees…Even Dave Castro teased us pre-14.5 with a little video on the CrossFit Games Instagram feed (click image to be taken to the video):
castro 14.5

“Everybody know what we’re gonna be feeding them tonight…but nobody has a clue to how we’re gonna serve it.”

I was playing hockey when 14.5 was announced and actually forgot to check the announcement for a while after I got home.  I was not too impressed to see this: 
14.5 wod

You can read about my pre-WOD nervousness here, but what I wrote on Friday afternoon, was nothing compared to the nerves I had when I got to the Box. 

I signed up on the run sheet and picked lucky #13. This seemed like a good spot for me to choose. It’s my hockey jersey number and it just seemed to be the place for me on the run sheet.  I wasn’t in the first group to start, but would be replacing one of the first people finished their WOD, taking their station on the gym floor.

I started my warm up with a 500m row, did some work with the foam roller and lacrosse ball, and then the usual stretches and warm ups we do. I did some work with the PVC pipe to get my shoulders warm, did some squats, and then a few empty bar thrusters and a couple at 65#.  In regular WODs with thrusters I use 45#, so jumping to 65# was pretty scary.  Those 65# thrusters were tough and once again I started to doubt if I could do 84 of them.

Watching the first group do the WOD didn’t do much for my confidence either.  People looked like they were suffering even on the first round. I started to get even more nervous and really doubted if I would be able to do this WOD. 

When Coach Ryan called my name and told me I was up, I was a giant bundle of nerves.  I really didn’t know if I could do it.  I even got a little teary as I got to my station.  The thought of 84 65# thrusters just got to be too much. A couple of the coaches, Savannah and Katrina, both came over and gave me a hug and told me I could do it.  My judge, Simon – who I had as my judge for 14.4 too, gave me a little pep talk as well.  Then he started the 3-2-1 countdown, I wiped my tears away, and picked up the bar for the first time.  I cleaned it up and then got my focus and did the squat part of the thruster – that’s not the hard part for me…the tough part is the press part, since I couldn’t stop and push press it up…it had to be one fluid movement.  Well, I did the first one and thought how the hell am I going to do 20 more for this first round, let alone 83 more for the whole WOD.  I think I may have done 4 or 5 thrusters and then had to put the bar down.  Simon was great at encouraging me and I picked the bar up and did 3 more thrusters before I had to put it down again.  Then Simon said something like “those three looked good..nice and strong…just keep doing that…3 at a time”.  And that’s exactly what I did…the rest of them were done in sets of 3 for the entire rest of the WOD. 

The burpees were actually my recovery time.  I had watched a video earlier in the afternoon that had someone doing a burpee with jumping out and back and someone stepping out and back beside each other.  The step burpee was a little slower, but not all that much. It’s not like I would be posting one of the top times, so, I decided on step burpees for each round.  I stepped out and back and was able to go unbroken in each set, never needing to stop and rest during the burpees.

The round of 15 was the worst round for me.  I had already done so many thrusters by then and still had so many to go.  But, I had a great cheering section and my thruster strategy and I just kept plugging away 3 at a time. 

Finally, I got to the last round of 3 thrusters…thank God!  They were tough, but I managed. Only 3 burpees and I would be done.  I actually jumped them out and back and they were probably the fastest three burpees I’ve ever done.  I just wanted it to be over.  When I finally hopped over the bar that last time, I let out the biggest yell!  I did it!  Kat and Sav were both there to give me the biggest celebratory hug, and my friend Nikki, who was already finished, gave me a big high five, and I think I may have even hugged Simon!  I was so happy! 

My time was not the fastest posted in our Box that day, nor was it the slowest, and even if it was I’m not sure I would have cared. I finished!  I did 84 65# thrusters!!! 14.5 score 
After I finished, I stayed to cheer on fellow athletes and then watched the coaches do the WOD.  It was so amazing to see them kill this WOD.

As a reward for 14.5, hubby and I were planning to go out for beer and chicken wings. Turns out a few others were planning on doing that too. We met them at the bar and we had a fun night chatting about life and CrossFit and I stuffed myself with chicken wings and enjoyed a few nice, cold Coronas!  I was one happy CrossFitter!

14.5 was one of the hardest things I have done at CrossFit..maybe even the hardest so far.  It took me outside my comfort zone, but also showed me that I need to have more confidence in my abilities.  It wasn’t easy, but I finished…and for that, I am proud!

Did you do 14.5?
How did it go?



14.5 was announced tonight.  No great shocker it is thrusters and burpees…and lots of them.

No time limit!  I may be spending the whole night at CFNC trying to finish this bad boy.

I need to go to bed and pray to the CrossFit Gods that by 6:30 tomorrow night I can suddenly do a 65# thruster.

I’M FREAKING OUT!!!  I wish I was 55 years old…I might have half a chance.


CrossFit Open 14.2 Announcement

Tonight was the big announcement for 14.2.  Like everyone else competing in the games, I was anxious to see what this week’s Open WOD would be.

Tonight was also my hockey night, so I didn’t get to watch the announcement live, or watch Camille Leblanc-Bazinet and Talayna Fortunato go head to head with the workout.  But, as soon as I walked in the door, I headed straight to my laptop to see what the 14.2 WOD would be..and here’s what I found:


I have to say…this is not a good WOD for me. I should be able to do the overhead squats, but it won’t be easy. 65lb is the max OHS I have ever done and I’ve only done 10 of them in total at that weight.  I’m hopeful that tomorrow I will be able to do 10 in a row.  And that might be the end of my workout.  I have never done a chest to bar pull-up without a band.  The only pull-up I can do unassisted is a kipping pull-up, but I don’t get my chest to the bar.  I guess tomorrow will be an interesting WOD…if I can get just one C2B pull-up I will be thrilled.  I guess I will spend some time tomorrow searching for YouTube videos about how to do a C2B pull-up. 

Aside from tomorrow being the day I will do 14.2, it will also be the last day of my Whole Life Challenge.  Since I will be away when the group is doing the finale WOD on Saturday, I will be doing mine tomorrow morning.  I was a bit worried that doing the WLC finale WOD might impact my performance on the Open WOD that I will do later in the afternoon.  Now that I’ve seen the Open WOD, I won’t have to worry about that being a problem.  I’m pretty sure I will be taking a 10 as my score for the Open WOD, and the WLC WOD in the morning isn’t going to change that.

Are you looking forward to 14.2?
Can you do C2B pull-ups?


Open 14.1 Prediction

Fingers crossed for some Pracercise in Open 14.1!

Some ankle weights, a camel-toe, and you are ready to go! 

I died laughing when my friend Paula sent me this earlier this afternoon.  I just had to share!

Real Open 14.1 WOD announcement in 4.5 hours!!!


I Did It!

Last night, before I lost my nerve, I signed up for the CrossFit Open. 

I have no idea how I will do.  I looked back at all of the Open WODs and thought I would be able to make a decent effort at most of them based on where I am now at CrossFit.  I might not be able to finish them all, but I could at least give them a decent effort.  So, I bit the bullet and signed up. 

The Open starts Feb 27, so I have a month to work on things and build my confidence.  If this doesn’t motivate me to push a little harder in class, I don’t know what will!  Wish me luck!!!

I am moving into the 3rd week of the Whole Life Challenge.  All has been going well, but I have been missing having a snack that tastes like a treat, but still falls within WLC guidelines.  I’ve stocked up on Lara Bars and they have been good, but I wanted something different.  Then, the other day, one of the other participants in the challenge posted a recipe on Facebook for an “oatmeal to go” muffin.  I love oatmeal and the recipe sounded good and easy, so I gave them a try.  This afternoon I baked a batch of 18 muffins.
photo (2)
My son high-jacked a muffin shortly after they came out of the oven.  He gave them two thumbs up.  I waited until just a few minutes ago to try one myself…oh my god, these are fantastic!  I can’t wait to have another one as a mid-afternoon snack tomorrow. 

Now, I need to sign off and get to bed so I can get 7 hours of sleep for my lifestyle challenge.

Have you got any good WLC or paleo treats you can share?

Have a great week!


Me vs. …


Like all CrossFit vidoes, this one is so motivating.  It makes me want to sign up for the Open so badly.  I think I’m going to do it.  And it will definitely be me vs. myself.  I’m up for the challenge.  I’m ready to push myself and see just what I can do.  For this, I think just trying is a win…and if I’m last.. well, who cares!  Maybe I’ll even surprise myself. 

Are you signed up for the Open?

Who are you competing against?


The Friday Five

Happy Friday, kids!  We made it to another weekend – wohoo! And you know what that means….it’s time for another edition of…

Let’s get to it!

1.  It’s the end of week 2 of the Whole Life ChallengeI have been doing very well with all of the components of the program:  nutrition, workouts, mobility, supplement, & lifestyle (first two weeks it was drinking half your body weight in ounces of water).   So far I have all of my points.  That may all change tomorrow.  Tomorrow, the lifestyle challenge changes…and it really will be a challenge for me – get 7 hours of sleep a day.  Most nights I get somewhere between 5.5 and 6 hours of sleep.  Last time I did the challenge, 7 hours of sleep was a lifestyle challenge for only 1 week, i think, and I was so happy when that week was over  Getting 7 hours will not be easy.  Weekends won’t be a problem, but getting 7 hours during the week will be tough.  I will have to make a good effort to get to bed significantly earlier than usual if I’m going to keep my lifestyle points.  Hopefully I can do it.  I really could use more sleep!

sleep solves everything
2.  Today’s WOD was killer:
jan 24 wod

So, the shoulder press wasn’t too bad.  I stuck with 55# for the last 3 sets and just worked on form and squeezing everything as I pushed the bar up.  It’s hard to resists the urge to give a little dip with the legs and help get the bar up.  After the shoulder press strength work, we did some work on muscle ups.  For the first time ever, I was up on the rings.  I worked on the kipping motion from hollow body to super man.  It’s very different doing it off the rings than the pull-up bar as the rings move.  We also got a few tips about how to get the transition from the swing to get your hips up to the rings.  There is a lot going on there.  I will just stick with trying to kip from the rings for the next while. 

After the muscle up work it was down to the WOD.  Since I can’t do a muscle up, my WOD would be pull-ups and ring dips.  RX was 90 of each, but Coach said that number if for the elite athletes.  I am not one of those!  I ended up scaling to 40 of each, and I did all 40 pull-ups unassisted!  I was alternating 10 pull-ups and then 10 dips.  I really wanted to get to 10 unbroken pull-ups, but I could only manage sets of 5, and towards the end that dropped down to a few sets of 3.  My hands are killing me. I really need to find some grips or gloves to help with that.  I didn’t tear tonight, but both hands are pretty tender. 

After all of this I did only 20 GHD sit-ups as my back was feeling a little tweaky and I didn’t want to risk it.  I’m okay with that.  I still got a pretty goof workout in!  Now I’ve got 2 days of rest before going back for more Monday night.  I will need to find something to do at home to get my workout requirement done for the WLC.  I will see what time I wake up tomorrow…maybe I will go for another quick treadmill run.  We’ll see!

3.  I am chipping away at my reading goal.  I just finished reading Orange is the New Black last night.  It was really good and very different from the TV series.  I won’t give anything away, but they have taken a lot of liberty with the TV show!  With this book finished, I’m now at 2 books for 2014.  I will need to find my next book and get right to it if I want to reach my goal of 24 for the year. To keep track of my reads, I’ve created a “Books I’ve Read” page where I will list everything once I’m finished reading a book.  If you have any good suggestions of what I should add to my reading list for the year feel free to comment on my “books” page. 

4.  I think I’m taking Belly Dancing lessons!  One of my girlfriend’s saw a TeamBuy for 4 belly dancing lessons for $20. She thought it might be fun if we did it as a group.  It sounds like 4 or 5 of us are in.  No idea what I may have gotten myself into, but I’m sure it will be good for a few laughs!  I will let you know how it goes when we actually get our lesson with the Desert Belles
5.  The CrossFit Open is coming up.  Everyone who does CrossFit knows about the CrossFit games, and the route to the games starts with The Open

The Open is really just that.  It is the qualifying round that is Open to anyone who wants to enter.  Sign up on the website, pay your money, and then wait for the Open WODs to be announced and then hit the WODs for 5 weeks in a row.  Top scorers from each region will go to regional semi-finals.  The best from there go to the Games.  There is no way in hell that I will be going anywhere, but I’m considering signing up for the Open just to see how I can do and to challenge myself a bit.  Coaches at my Box are encouraging everyone to sign up. 

I started CrossFit just before the Open last year and did a few of the Open workouts.  They are tough and I scaled just about everything last year.  Since we have no idea what the WODs will be, I have no idea if I will even be able to do them RX, which you need to do to score any points.  Still, I will consider signing up. If nothing else, the Open WODs should be some pretty good workouts. 

Happy Friday, everyone.  Have a GREAT WEEKEND!

Do you have any recommendations for good books I should read this year?

Are you signed up for the Open?


What is Beauty?

One of the coaches from my CrossFit posted this video on the Box Facebook page.

Strong IS beautiful.

I LOVE it!

Have a BEAUTIFUL day!

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