Basic Movements for Daily Life

Posts tagged “exercise



…is some of the stuff I have in my basement…








…is more of the stuff I have in my basement…








…stuff looks at me each time I make my way down  the stairs to the basement…

Kettlebell Night August 22 2013 014







…stuff can be used damned near anywhere…

…stuff keeps me in reasonable shape…











…stuff takes up a small amount (relatively speaking) of space…

…stuff can kick your ass…

…stuff can be used in a space easily about the size of two or three yoga mats placed beside each other…

…stuff will show you how strong you are, how strong you can be…

kbs ice cream










…stuff will reveal your weakness and show you areas you need to improve upon…

…stuff helps me release stress and tension of a trying day…

…stuff will make you sweat…

…stuff can be used by young and old…

…stuff will make you strong…



Don’t Flaunt It – Sorta

Chances are pretty good I’m guilty of being ‘that guy‘ when it comes to getting healthy and fitter.  I’m pretty sure there were times I was kind of annoying and in people’s faces to a certain degree when I hopped aboard the path to a healthier lifestyle.  After all I wanted to shout from the rooftops I had arrived at a lifestyle change.

That’s nice…

Good for you…

Face it fitness friend, not everyone wants to hear about kettlebells, undulating periodization, the latest on protein to muscle mass ratio.  It’s good that you do, but not everyone wants to hear about it. ALL. THE. TIME.

I fear I was that guy.  I might still be, who knows?

One does not need to get preachy about a healthy lifestyle. Encourage but don’t be preachy.  If someone is curious about how you made your changes let them know.  Discuss it with them about your journey and how you arrived at it.  A gentle nudge is way better than a you-better-do-this push.

If you think about it, you are essentially a walking billboard for a healthier lifestyle.  If you make dramatic changes to your body there may be nothing better than people seeing those changes.  Especially if they haven’t seen you for some time.  A healthier, fitter person tends to walk taller, prouder and well, look different than they may have a few months ago.  Sometimes that’s the only sales pitch you need.  If they get curious, they’ll ask.  If they’re interested and sincere they may join you.

Sure, encourage, but don’t annoy.  Use subtle encouragement.



You Are Not Being Selfish


I’ve heard that term used by others to describe me taking time to improve my health and well-being.  It’s never been used by my family toward me.


Some say taking time to train, practice, workout, eat healthy or whatever is selfish.  As though one is stealing time they could be spending with another.  By regaining or improving your health and well being by as little as three hours a week, you can end up spending a longer life with those you love.


If you are taking three to five hours a week for yourself by training, that’s hardly being selfish.  There are one hundred and sixty eight hours in a week.  Three to five to yourself is two to three percent of the total weekly hours you get.


Just the word lately angers me.  If someone claims it’s selfish you are spending time to improve your health and not spending time with you, aren’t they the selfish one by claiming you may not be spending any time with them?


How is improving my health, which potentially will help one live longer (and ultimately spend more time with those you love) selfish?

I get it.  Everybody boards the ‘healthy me‘ train at different points in their lives.  As a guy who hopped on board a while ago, I need to understand those around may not be ready to punch their own ticket yet.  That’s fine and fair.  Not my job to judge.  Maybe encourage, but not judge.

The track goes the other way, too.  Just because you may not be ready to ride the rails doesn’t mean you should yank someone off the car.  Who knows, maybe one day you’ll want to grab a seat next to them.  This will be a topic for another day.

You, as a person on a journey to health and well being, are not being selfish.  You’re getting stronger, healthier, more flexible and adding years to your life to be with those you love or perhaps help others in need.

Go.  Be strong.  It’s not selfish.

(Re)Build Your Foundation

My commute to work takes me through various parts of Central Alberta.  I get a chance to witness spectacular sunrises, sunsets, storms (winter, spring, summer and fall), a hint of the foothills and a taste of the prairies.  Honest to God, this is some of the most beautiful territory on Planet Earth.  Period.

On my journey one morning I noticed for the first time a place where a building used to stand. The building isn’t there anymore, but the concrete foundation is.  Farmland is all around it which has been tilled, planted and harvested many times around the square remains of whatever building used to stand there.  Roots, weeds and debris of all sort litter around it.

This got me thinking; if  a structure were to be reconstructed, the base, its foundation, is already there.  The basis onto which a building can be built is in place.  It’s likely solid and ready for any kind of construction.

Human foundation is much the same.  Once you’ve got that basic foundation constructed, the rest can be built.

Human foundations may vary from person to person.  If you’re struggling with healthy eating, build a basic foundation to start.  Remove one poor food choice from your menu and build from that.

If your foundation is to build strength, start at what many people call ‘the core.’  That would be your abs and trunk.  You know, the part that joins your top and bottom.  Sure you can make a strong top and a strong bottom individually, but if the middle is weak the top and bottom can’t really work together or complement each other.  Your ‘core’ doesn’t need to be ripped either.  Plenty of people have a strong foundation without the six pack and if that’s something you want work on the healthy eating foundation.

Once the foundation is there, build up from there.  Keep building till you get to a set goal and rebuild some more from there, kind of like adding another story to a building.

If you’ve had a strong foundation in the past it can be rebuilt.  Find what needs to be corrected within it and start the rebuild.  It’s likely still there, just needs the field around it cleared to get to it.

“Because if you have a strong foundation like we have, then you can build or rebuild anything on it.  But if you’ve got a weak foundation you can’t build anything.” – Jack Scalia

“Failure Is Not An Option.”

Watch this, then read on:

Okay, get it?

That is from “Apollo 13” and the main character in this scene is Gene Kranz played by Ed Harris.  Apparently Kranz never actually said “failure is not an option.”  He explains as such:

“In preparation for the movie, the script writers, Al Reinart and Bill Broyles, came down to Clear Lake to interview me on “What are the people in Mission Control really like?” One of their questions was “Weren’t there times when everybody, or at least a few people, just panicked?” My answer was “No, when bad things happened, we just calmly laid out all the options, and failure was not one of them. We never panicked, and we never gave up on finding a solution.”

Regardless, the point is ‘failure is NOT an option.’  And this is the case no matter what situation is tossed at you as try to achieve your fitness goal.

Take all the scientific and engineering jargon out of that scene above and replace with comments you face day to day as you make your journey.  All the negative ‘this can’t be done’ crap is the same, just with different terminology.  I’m not kidding, saboteurs are everywhere.  ‘Have this cookie’ could be the same as ‘you can’t run a vacuum on twelve amps!’  

No matter where you go or what you do there is always someone with a negative point of view regarding, well, everything.  Honestly, it gets tiring.  Remove yourself from the situation as best as possible and show them it CAN be done.

Toxic environments suck.  They suck the life out of you.  They suck the drive out of you.  And they suck the determination and motivation out of you.

Lace ’em up and get going.  Failure is not an option.

You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.”  ~ Zig Ziglar

You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.

Zig Ziglar


You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.

Zig Ziglar


No Matter How Bad You Have It….

The adage goes around “no matter how bad you have it, chances are someone has it worse than you.”  Basically this preaches be thankful for what you have.  And really, shouldn’t we be?  We as human beings get self-centered.  I’m not saying it’s right or wrong, our perception is our reality, but sometimes we need to look past our own nose to realize the world goes far beyond our own personal space.

Case in point, my own nagging hip.  I was annoyed with it again the other day and was kinda whining about it wanting the pain associated with it to come to an end.  Then someone posted a story on Facebook about Ava Cowan.

Here is a quick bio of Ava Cowan gleaned from the internet:

“Ava Cowan is an IFBB Figure Professional, a CPTS® and full time online coach and consultant for women of all fitness levels.”

So what’s the story?  Well, apparently Miss Cowan was severely injured in a car crash earlier this year:  “I got into a car accident two months ago.  A woman ran a stop sign and rammed into the driver’s side of my car.  I was just able to get her insurance information and driver’s license before she drove off, she said she was busy!  So I called the police and made a police report.  Basically, I did all of the things that you are supposed to do.  That also meant getting myself checked physically.  I went to get a MRI and it turns out that  I have two herniated discs.  I was just so shocked to find that out.  All I could think about is how careful I have to be, and a bit relieved that as a figure athlete I don’t need to work so hard to keep muscle on.  I have a good amount, and can just maintain and refine my physique.  It is really funny how things turn out sometimes.  I used to train so hard and heavy, and I really enjoyed that.  But my health supersedes all of that, and there is no way I want to add to this injury.  So I am good to go, and will work to keep all injury’s manageable.”

She chronicles her journey back to strength here:

So, ya, my hip is annoying as hell.  But I can move it.  I can walk, I can lift and do a bajillion things.  If you are about to start your own journey to strength, take inspiration from Ava Cowan knowing she has a ways to go, too.  And she’s dealing with injuries.

Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” – Joshua J. Marine

“Bikini Body for Spring?” Now’s The Time

Yep, it’s November and I’m encouraging you to think about what all the fitness magazines will start spewing to you in six to eight weeks.  New Year’s Resolutions and Bikini Bodies.

In mere weeks we’ll be slammed with “how to get the six pack you’ve always wanted” (assuming you’ve always wanted one.  Or, “beach body perfect in 21 days.”  (don’t buy into that).  “Or three moves guaranteed to have you ready for the weekend at the water.” (I’ll bet the three moves I’d give you are different than what the magazine would pick.)  The slop is endless.  Seriously.  It sells magazines and sometimes offers false hopes that YOU or I can be ready for a ‘surf boarders six pack’ in one month.  Don’t waste whatever the magazine costs for five pages of mostly glossy photos and next to no words.  There is NOTHING they will write in there that is magic or new.

I’ll state right now, I don’t usually make resolutions.  And if I do I’m not going to wait till the first of January to do so.  If you want to change something, do it NOW.  Don’t wait till Monday or January 1st, do it NOW.

That being typed, start planning the bikini body today.  Well, okay, I’ll give you till tomorrow cuz I just sprung this on you.  There are some major hurdles ahead.  Christmas delights being one of them.  If you can get through the onslaught of chocolate, cookies, chocolate cookies, eggnog (yuck) and whatever else might find its way in front of you, you’re ahead of the game.  Honest to goodness, this next month or so can be the most challenging.

Don’t, I repeat, DON’T say “I’ll wait till after the holidays are done.”  If you start today (okay, tomorrow) you’ll be SIX weeks ahead of all those waiting for the first day of 2013.  Ya, you may slip up a bit and dip into the chocolate a little, but don’t let that deter you.  Get back on the horse and ride on.

Oh, and about those three moves, email me if you want my suggestions at  I might even throw in a fourth that is so simple, you’ll smile.