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Friday, June 28, 2019

What I'm Reading This Week #26

Number 26. 

You know what that means...we are halfway through 2019!

Think back to the first day of the new year.  What were you doing?  (I was at a falconry in Vermont letting a bird of prey eat raw meat from my hand.)  What did you want for this year?  (I wanted to find that passion to push myself and not put in the bare minimum.  It took me a while but I think I found it.)  Have you taken the steps to put those things into motion?  It's not too late.  Every minute is a clean slate from whatever you want to do to better your life in whatever that means for you.

Now let's get to...



Why Diet Culture Is Toxic — Even for People Who Don’t Diet  (Interesting take)

Cardio Burns Fat but May Be Detrimental to Your Muscle Gaining  (Good info to know)

19 Lies You Were Told as a Kid—That You Probably Still Believe   (I know I did)

This Is How Often—and For How Long—You Should Exercise, According to a Personal Trainer  (Yep)

The 20 Best Vitamin K-Rich Foods   (#13 surprised me)

Does ‘Calories in vs. Calories out’ Really Matter?  (Excellent info and hopefully people will stop making it sound so friggin' simple.)

7 Nutrients That Help Increase Muscle Tone  (I've tweaked most of these recently but still so hard for me to get in vitamin E for some reason even with food additions.)

Alison Brie On How She Recovers From One of Hollywood's Most Physically Demanding Jobs  (Pro-wrestling is seriously no joke on the body speaking from someone who was in the squared circle once.)

30 Things About Life I Wish I Had Known 10 Years Ago  (Preach)

How To Spray Insulate A Shed  (Or a garage?  😁)

34-year-old's Facebook post on why she quit teaching goes viral: 'The filter comes off now'  (Kudos to her, big time!)

It's gonna be a scorcher this weekend so I'm not sure what we've got on the agenda and I'm good with that.  I'm hoping it's the last weekend we will be living life without answers and come next Friday I can feel like we can finally exhale.  It's been too long.

What are your thoughts halfway into this year?  Anything planned for the weekend?

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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Let's Do This

Happy almost Friday everyone!

I wanted to name this post "Eff you, Home Depot" because they are hitting all of the channels hard.  Just the first few bars of their annoying instrumental song makes me want to buy the store and do EVERYTHING. 



This usually starts in March when being shuttered in over the winter gives you more than enough time to look around your home and start picking it apart.  "Maybe just a little project," you think to yourself and then that damn commercial comes on and before you know it, you're drooling like Pavlov's dogs just like their marketing department wanted and you're talking crazy.  "We're going to remodel the basement!"  "Let's rip down all of the drywall in the garage and soundproof it from our a-hole neighbor and his wife's garlic heavy cooking.  We don't know how to drywall, tape and mud but that's why there's YouTube!"  Oh yeah, that's happening...next year.  We tried putting insulation on the one bare wall and it made ZERO difference in temperature or sound control.  We are thinking of getting an estimate of how much it would be to get it spray foamed out there if we tore down the drywall.  About 15 years ago over the course of several years, we had several roof issues that resulted in water damage so something will need to be done regardless but yeah, next March's twitch.  I did order a sample pack of some glue up ceiling tiles we're looking at but not to install the way you might think.  You'll see them if we determine the process won't drive us 20 shades of insane.

I've been making slow but sure progress on the basement.  I can only handle being down there for an hour at a time when I'm cleaning due to my dust allergy.  You'd think a dust allergy would make me a neat freak but nay.  I finally slid on those shelf liners for our wire storage shelves in the basement in place.  It's not like they've been sitting on the floor waiting for one of us to slip on them for four months or anything.  🙄  I broke down three boxes and got some homeless items where they needed to go.  I said goodbye to some stuff including the little sticker for firemen to know there was a dog to save here once.  Sigh. 

I've been working really hard the past week on putting that food challenge from last week's Friday links into practice.  (You still with me, Laura?)  Can I tell you how hard that was on Taco Tuesday after LEG DAY!?!  We were both sooooo hungry and we put the fork down between bites and I think it took us 20ish minutes to eat dinner when it usually takes 10-15 minutes.  That was a real test given how famished we were after two hard workouts in a row.  I'm especially proud of the Mr because that has always been his Achilles heel and he did awesomely.  We just need to keep it up so that we can enjoy the benefits.  It was nice seeing Joel on KTLA and I knew that dude couldn't do the swimmers with that sized weight because I could barely do them with 8's since he saves them for the end.  Jerk.  #saidwithlove

Thankfully our hard workouts are done for the week and I can work on undoing some knots that are being idiots.  I'll probably get into the basement today at some point.

Do you get the DIY itch or do you stay as far away from home improvement stores as possible?

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Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Hump Day Poll: Virtual Vacation

Sometimes you just need a...



With the swirls of uncertainty and impending crap that needs to be done to be inspected for window replacement and the basement prep, it's enough to make us totally forget that we even had a vacation this year, much less two (coming back from Christmas vacation the first week of January.)

My friend is going to Kauai for her honeymoon in a few months and I've been helping her here and there since we've been there 10x.  It has been a source of relaxation turning on KPOA, a Maui radio station, while I peruse things.  (I'm listening as I type.)  I found our favorite quirky cable access show Wala'au has some episodes on YouTube which takes us right back to Kauai because it was the only show we'd take time out to watch because the host is so funny.  Of course, the Kauai Visitors Channel takes us back too because we'd get off of the plane and when we'd collapse from the 18 hour travel day door to door, flip it on and fall asleep. 

We may not have a vacation until her destination wedding later in the year but listening to and watching these things help put me back in my happy place and honestly, are giving me the itch to go back.  However, we both agreed on no Hawaii until we have a lot more weight off.

Where do you go in your mind for your favorite virtual vacation when a real one isn't in the immediate future?

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Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Don't hit me and inspiration in waiting

Don't shoot the messenger but...

(source)
That means its been 6 months since we were romping in Vermont.  That made me switch over to the Trapp camera where the last time I checked it with any regularity, there was still snow.


Well, that ain't right.  Who are these cyclists taking place of snowshoers and skiers!?  What are these blue skies?  *spits on ground* 

I forgot to have my proofreader look this over so sorry if there are a bunch of typos.

Onto other news. 

It's been 10 years since we've been exercising on the regular.  We officially started in 2008, but no exercise was involved then except maybe once or twice a week as we started with working on portion control and eating slower.  In 2009, the calendar showed we started the year with it and have stuck with it since.  My mind immediately wants to apologize for not being at goal weight by now.  If you'd told me then that 10 years later I would still be this big, I may not have started.  Despite that, I have to tell myself that exercising consistently and eating right 6 days a week (sans vacations) is still something to be proud of.  In those 10 years, we've exercised in our basement.  It's unfinished and honestly, isn't a very inspiring place to be. 

Until I Kondo'd a good bit of it earlier in the year, it was like encroaching boxes, plastic filler from Amazon boxes and piles of things with no home were winning the battle.    We had our little 3x4' foam tiles, and that was it.  It was all we needed, but it doesn't feel like a space we look forward to going to six days a week.  As usual, in the middle of other projects I was in the middle of over the past few weeks, I'm like, "we should try to make over the workout space."  Before you know it, we're getting samples of wood look foam flooring, plank flooring and figuring out if we can install it over rubber mats and still have it work, etc.  The other night it was "maybe we should have the ceiling painted."  I like the way it looks, but I don't really want to go through the crap required to have that done if I'm honest.  Then I went down a Pinterest rabbit hole and yeah, I had to stop.  We did receive a sample that we both really liked, and the Mr was like "order it," but we need a place to put it when it comes in, and while I might've gotten started at the beginning of the year down there, I didn't finish it.

I hopped down there for 30 minutes the other day while the Mr was wasting time with our internet company and again yesterday.  I've got a box to donate full, another box trashed and that kind of takes care of the area by the Mr's workout space.  I need to attack my side next.  We also are going to get rid of a lot of stuff.  We have a Water Rower, which is an amazing piece of equipment...when you use it.  Depending on what we hear back, the Mr may not be able to use it anymore, and I don't ever use it and get bored on it when I do.  It takes up a good amount of room even though it folds up and it's health club grade, but I think it might be going bye bye.  I have no clue how we'll get rid of it but another problem for another day.  The same with our Total Trainers.  We do love them, but they may not be able to be part of our strength program anymore, but honestly, we use them 2-3x a year on a good year.  We also have a weight bench, but we don't use it for that purpose.  We use it as a horizontal dumbbell holder, and honestly, I'd rather just have the real thing and get the weight bench out of there.  It comes out far into my workout space so when we have to go against the wall for modified exercises, I can't do half of them (like Spiderman knee raises with a push up) because the bench is in the way.  We have to be realistic about what we choose to keep in the space and ask ourselves the questions about what we do and don't use.  My goal will be to get down there a little each day and go through one more thing to get us closer to being able to paint the long wall so the whole thing will be white wall wise.  Then we'll order the flooring, and the real fun begins.

Is your workout space inspiring?

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Monday, June 24, 2019

Hazy Weekend Recap

It's Monday...again.  I'm here to recap scintillating tales from our weekend.

Thursday night we moved everything to the right side of the patio so I would have it clear to seal it in the earlier part of the day.  I didn't get started until 11am because they were mowing before that and I didn't want it kicked into the setting sealant.  It was white, which worried me, but all of the reviews said it dried clear.   You ever get that feeling where you're like...


It rolls on clear(ish), but if there were dips and valleys in the stone, it would pool white.  I would grab my roller and kind of suck it out of there with it.  I let a LOT of it snake through the cracks in between to hopefully get that damn sand to finally solidify.  I had the Mr take a look 4 hours later, and we both were not happy to see a haze over all of the stones, but it's not like I couldn't seal the other side, so we moved all of the crap over, and I sealed the other half.



It does do its job, and hopefully, the haze dissipates with more rain.  I was drained, and the last thing I wanted to do was a workout even if it was a lighter one from Shaun T.  We both almost passed out on the couch when the phone rang and sent us to the ceiling.  It was a nurse telling us the next test that needed to be done since they did the wrong one in the first place and are trying to patient blame for us going to a different facility to save $500.  It's a clusterf**k from hell, and if you'd told us in March we still wouldn't have answers until July,  I'd have jumped off a bridge.  This is no way to live, and we are NOT going forward with this assclown being in charge of any method of care.  So hopefully we get what we need and go on the hunt for a new doc in 6 months to schedule an annual appointment if needed.

Our router has been failing on us, and the Mr wanted to get a combo cable modem/router, so he got this one after much research.  Of course, he was on the phone with the cable company for 45 minutes before they told him there was an internet outage.  Then he tried some stuff and found out it was a dud.  I wasn't wasting any more time because I had a date to meet some doggies at a shelter an hour away.  Two eldery rat terriers caught my eye, and I could've sworn that they were Toy Fox Terriers based on the pics I saw and if that was the case, I was in trouble.  I thought even though their life expectancy was only another year or two at best, that we could give them a good send off.  We got there an hour after they opened and went into a playroom.  The one was SO sweet but very, very nervous about if her sister was okay.  Her sister wanted nothing to do with us, wouldn't respond to her name, was very barky and jumped around like she was half Jack Russell.  They had to be adopted together, and that was a deal breaker given their energy.  We think the one sweet one that we liked would probably die of a broken heart without her sister to look after, and she just shook like a leaf when the other one was preoccupied which was 19 of the 20 minutes we were with them.  They made it clear they weren't going to be euthanized or anything and they would find a home where they could go together, it's just not going to be ours.  I know dogs act differently in a shelter, but we've had lots of experience with shelter dogs, and this was the opposite energy we were looking for given their age.  They're like 13 going on 13 months with anxiety and alpha issues.  But still, it was nice to get puppy kisses from one of them. 

Then we stopped by an orchard store and poked around a bit then returned the router at Wally's and picked up a new one that worked on our way home.  I knew he wouldn't be able to relax, which means I wouldn't either from his bad juju, so I told him to go home.  We grabbed dinner, and he got everything done he needed to.  We rented Happy Death Day 2U and OMG, it was so funny, and if you'd told me I'd bawl my eyes out at how heartstring pulling a movie in that genre would be, I'd have called you a liar.  I'm talking sobbing on the couch in the dark.  I know it's supposed to be a horror movie, but if you're a fan of Groundhog Day style plots, this one and the first one are great rents.  Some of the most original in the genre we've seen without being gory. 

Sunday was laundry day, and he snuck it down while I was brushing my teeth.  I looked at our workout calendar for the next two months and decided to make a tweak or two.  I've only been losing a pound despite being at a deficit that on paper should have me losing 2 lbs easily.  I think part of it is I'm holding on to so much inflammation from leg day (Thursdays) that it's carrying into Saturday's weigh in.  So I've switched up the next two months of my own LIIFTformation calendars I made to do the four hardest workouts the first four days then taper.  So Thursdays will now be Stronger, and Abs (no weights) and Fridays will be the usual T20 Balanced and rolling.  I'm hoping that switch will give my body some time to calm down because I'm just way too sore every Saturday.  I needed to use my shiatsu thingy on my legs so I could even walk to go down and weigh in.  Fingers crossed this will make July a little less traumatic on my body.  The Mr is burnin' through the pounds though so congrats to him!

I suggested we get our workout done sooner than later and my Lord.  It was Chest, and Tri's from LIIFT 4, and I had some kind of tweak in my shoulder joint that was shooting pain.  The Mr massaged it for me in between sets, and it helped quite a bit.  After that, it was Transform 20 Powerful, and I think I called them both "dickbags from hell" throughout the whole thing even whilst rolling and stretching.  I'm waiting for the day I'm as excited as Soleil that the workout is over because I would actually be able to raise my arms up.

(via Pinterest)


When it was done, I got straight to making lunch which was Beyond Burgers with kale and caramelized onions I had going while we worked out and potato wedges.  Then I got in the shower to try to bring my broken body back to life at 2pm.  We grabbed some produce from the grocery then went for a drive in the country, which sadly doesn't look like it's going to be country much longer in some sections.  God, I hate "progress."  "Oh, you have an alpaca farm that's been there for 15 years?  Sorry, we think a strip mall where literally no other stores exist is a good idea."   We came home, and I made dinner while we watched Mr. Mom and wished for the simpler world we were watching.  That was about it for the weekend.

How was your weekend?  Get into anything fun?

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Friday, June 21, 2019

What I'm Reading This Week #25

Happy Friday everyone...we made it!  Today is our ONE decent day over the next week, so I get to seal the patio (on one side) hope it dries in time for us to move everything to that side and seal the other side.  I don't mind the rain and lower temps but two days with no rain would be appreciated.  Once this is done, I am NEVER moving that damn umbrella again!!  I will literally seal around it in 3 years.

But enough of that, let's break the seal on...




Why Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson Is Technically Obese  (The problem with the BMI chart.)

10 Things Nobody Tells You About Painting Kitchen Cabinets  (The Mr's internal dialogue..." please God, no.")

The 30-day eating challenge that can blow your mind—and transform your body.   (I've tried this a few days this week, and I swear I need a sign ON the table because once I realize I'm not doing it, it's too late.)

This Entrepreneur Was Going Blind — But Reversed It Through Nutrition  (Holy crap!)

What To Do When Your Mindfulness Practice Just Isn't Working  (I will not be negative...I will not be nega...SQUIRREL!)

People Used to Tell Me ‘You Could Be a Knockout’—My Mistake Was Listening to Them   (It's not about the face.  😉)

Lifting Weights but Not Losing Fat? A Trainer Explains Why — and How to Fix It  (Duly implemented.)

Why Women, but Not Men, Are Judged for a Messy House  (See Mr, I told you!   If a service tech is coming over and some stuff is out of place and looks messy, I start cleaning, and he's like "the guy doesn't care," and I say "easy for you to say, you're not the one that's judged!"  This backs me up)

How to Put Up Removable Wallpaper Without Hating Your Life  (Thinkin' about it.)

My Mother-in-Law Wore a Wedding Dress—To My Wedding  ("She says she just didn't think about it when she bought the dress."  As another woman whose mother in law wore white to her wedding, yes she did.)

103-Year-Old Julia 'Hurricane' Hawkins Just Set a New World Record for the 50-Meter Dash  (Something to aspire to!)

Other than finishing the patio today, I don't have anything planned for this weekend.  I'm looking forward to my Epsom salt bath, and I think I might throw in some bentonite clay to help detox a little after doing manual labor in addition to our lighter workout this evening.   I'm thinking I'll sleep well tonight!

What tomfoolery are you getting into this weekend?

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Thursday, June 20, 2019

Flipping the Script

The other day I was checking in on some longtime friends from an old diet group I was in eons ago.  I asked how everyone was doing and updated them on our newest workout program and using Cronometer to track our nutrition now.  I was waiting to hear what they were up to...health or otherwise.  The first responder said, "I’m glad you're trying something that's challenging. You two need that. I’m happy with simply walking and weights."

You two need that? and the phrase "simply walking and weights" I don't know why but something about the way I read those hit me wrong even if nothing was meant by it.

I didn't dwell on it, but I asked the Mr later on if he saw the check-in post and he said yes. He said that he wondered what she meant by that since he didn't know her but it seemed like it could be snarky or like she thought we were doing it wrong since all she has to do is walk and weights.  I responded to her about some other things and told her we tried walking for six months last year and got all hot and sweaty for zero pounds or inches lost, so, unfortunately, that approach didn't work for us.  (Lest she thinks we didn't try something along those lines, we did, it just got us nowhere except tired because we got up earlier to do it.)  Her response was, "I know you like challenges."

And I thought, "you know what?  I do like challenges!"

Regardless of what her intent was and I hope it wasn't negative even if it kind of came off that way to us, I wish I was someone who could walk and get results.  I might be able to maintain with that method, but I can't lose weight or inches doing it.  She took a different weight loss path than we did and walking and weights work for her, and good for her.  We all think that the way we're doing things is the right way to do it, but the fact is we're each doing things the right way for us.  Each person's health journey is different and what works for you, won't work for someone else whether it's with your food or your movement.  Our genetic and gut make up are completely different from each other.  Heck, sometimes what works for you for a long time suddenly won't work anymore!  Then you have to look at other opportunities to change things up, throw your body off, and work to get things moving in the right direction again.  You have to ask yourself if you're just putting in the bare minimum to get by then wondering why you're not seeing results.

Am I whooped and feel kinda broken some days with this new program?  Yes but I know I'm also still adapting to it, and it gives two less amped days of the week (Tuesday and Friday), so your body can recover a bit before a full rest day on the seventh day which is a better approach than we've taken in the past.  I don't know if this will be our big plateau buster or not but we won't know until we try.  I don't know if people are looking at what we're doing and going, "why are you doing something so hard when you don't need to?" and the answer is because I can.  I watched my mother struggle for over a full minute to come up two steps into our house last week with the aid of a cane and the Mr.  That ain't gonna be me if I can help it.

When the day comes that I'm looking to maintain on purpose and can do walking and weights, I'm all for it.  I know I have a lifetime of mental struggles to get past to be successful with the rest of the weight I have to lose.  I know that my knee jerk reaction is always negative and trying to read between the lines.  I'm trying to flip the script and accept the compliment in what she said that may or may not be there.

In the end, even though I hate the saying, it's true...


I will continue to walk the path that we set for ourselves picking up bits of knowledge along the way and tweaking as needed.

How do you flip the script when faced with a comment you don't know how to take?

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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Yay or Nay?



Every year, just in time for you to start getting seasonal yearnings for more fruits and veggies, they release the "dirty dozen" list of produce that has the most pesticides.  While I know organic produce still uses some deterrents, I do try to buy organic when possible for produce and as much as possible for everything else too.  From eggs to meat to baking ingredients. 

So, that got me wondering...

Do you buy organic?  If not, do you wash your produce with a solution or run it under water and hope for the best?

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Tuesday, June 18, 2019

"Old" is Getting Younger

Indulge me a soapbox moment, if you will.

The Mr saw the trailer for the new Banana Splits movie.  (Warning- this ain't your childhood Banana Splits...it's rated R.)  I never watched it, but I knew of the earworm theme song, but I guess he watched reruns of it as a little kid since it ran into the late 70's and early 80's.  The article said something about how the trailer would "ruin your childhood," and some idiot in the comments was like "you must be really old if it ruins your childhood" or something along those lines.  Ahh the world wide web, making insults easy to hurl from your mother's basement since 1989.

When I was a kid, I knew the only people who were "old" in my eyes were my great grandparents but really only because my great grandma had been preparing me for her death for as long as I knew her.  I remember being 8 years old, we'd go down to Florida, and she'd be all "well, this is the last time you'll probably see me because I'll probably die soon."  She was 70...and, you know what?   She didn't die for another 21 years when I was 29 years old!  Actually, she died first, and my grandpa died a week later of a broken heart.  Even when I was a kid, I never took to calling them old to their face (or behind their backs that I remember unless grandma did something to tick me off), never brushed off their opinions because they came from a different generation, as a matter of fact, I liked getting to know them (or any older person) through their stories.  I guess I had more respect for my elders.  I remember my two cousins when they were close would call my grandma an old geezer to her face because I think they were enamored with how funny the word was, but I could see the hurt on her face.  (This is why I reveled in the story of them getting the blunt end of a wooden spoon when they spent an unruly vacation with them).  I was always ticked at my aunts for not yanking them aside, making them apologize and to treat their grandmother with a little more respect.  I bet they wish they could take it back now.  No one likes to be called old, and yet those who aren't old yet think it's all in good fun.  You try being over 40 with a body that betrays you in a new way every other month when in your head you still feel and think like you're 25.

I am an old soul.  I've always been drawn to ladies church hats, gloves, sparkly clutches from back in the day, brooches, and just a sense of order to the way things should be done.  I had an especially good time at my other great grandma's house when she'd let me raid her costume jewelry drawer and wear her hats.  (You can imagine how surprising it was to see grandma's hair on a mannequin one day with grandma not attached to it!)  I don't know if I lived to be some old lady that liked to dress to the nines that passed in the '70s and then boom old lady baby me was born, but I've always had a respect for those who experienced the basics before us, and I didn't mock them.  I certainly never looked at my grandparents (who were just turning 40 when I started to recall memories) as old but when I recently read some 15-year-old refer to a thirty-year-old as "that old dude," my mind just reeled.  It's not the first time I've heard it either.  In this youth-obsessed culture, 30 is somehow old, and if you're over 30, you should be sitting on your back porch waiting for the grim reaper.

I want to smack these arrogant bastards upside the head with some knowledge because let me tell you, you are not guaranteed to make it to "old," sweet cheeks.  A classmate in 3rd grade that a lot of kids picked on just because she was quiet and had a religion where she had to wear only skirts (I didn't, I felt bad for her and always made a point to be nice) felt pretty bad when she and her entire family died in a house fire that year.  She didn't even get to see the 4th grade.  My friend in middle school and our freshman year of high school was killed and stuffed behind a dumpster.  She didn't even get to make it to ADULT, much less old.  A classmate I was friends with in 5th grade had a routine back surgery at 24, got an infection, and died.  She didn't even make it to the rates where your insurance starts to go down because they consider you more responsible.  The Mr's childhood bully didn't even get to 40, and statistically, he still had the same amount of life ahead of him as behind him.  So yeah, don't sit back with your text neck and self-important ignorance of what is old in your eyes because you should be so lucky to make it to old.

You are young for a BLIP on the radar in the scheme of your life if you live to a statistically expected age.  There is a reason for the phrase.


You have to be young and stupid before you can be old and (hopefully) wiser but that doesn't mean you have to be disrespectful to those who were here first.   I am more than happy to listen to the thoughts and ideas of people younger than I am if we can have an intelligent conversation about it with a little respect going both ways.  You know, like every relationship should be.

Ours is the last generation that knew what life was like before the internet but used it in college.  We do not have the same severe anxiety issues that technology has strapped kids and young adults at corresponding ages who have grown up with it.  You can learn from us old folks if you take the time to listen.  Trust me when I tell you, you will resent some little sh*t telling you that you're over the hill regardless of your age but especially if you're in your 30's and 40's when everything is making you feel that way anyway and don't need someone trying to make you feel like crap about yourself.  Each generation has its voice, and they all have lessons to teach.  Dismissing people based solely on age like they have nothing to contribute will bite you in the ass because if the grid goes down, we'll all be just fine and then suddenly you'll want to be pals.



Ageism is alive and well in a time where the "old people" outnumber the coveted age group by 2 to 1.  There are 64 million of us 30-64 year olds compared to your 30 million 18-30 year olds so yeah, you might want to treat us with a little more empathy because if you're lucky, you'll be there one day too.

*Kicks over soapbox*

The Mr says to get off his lawn.

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Monday, June 17, 2019

Do they make nap pods? Weekend Recap

Googling my own question

Answer:  Yes, and I would like to crawl into one.

Friday the Mr got off early since he worked over the night before and we did a good bit of grocery shopping for ourselves.  One thing the Mr. didn't get was his cereal at Target because...seriously?

(Did you spot it?) 


Then it was off to the next grocery store where we witnessed the next generation of douchebags in training.

                       



Saturday we grabbed lunch, went to a nursery to get some peonies and poked around a home store before getting the necessities we'd need for the next day's cookout with my mom.  The weather said it was going to be a washout, but I figured the worst was I'd get wet.  I wanted to throw something together that I've been wanting to do for 23 years.  Our kitchen is the size of a shoebox and can barely fit two butts at once.  Our counter space is minimal at best.  I've always wanted something to go over the two sinks to use as extra surface area and decided midday the day before I needed it with more house to clean was the perfect time to do it and threw together an impromptu DIY project.  I could hear the Mr internalizing..."why, God?"

So I had Home Depot rip a board to my measurements, grabbed electrical tape and black contact paper.  I put the electrical tape on the corners and edges of the board so the paper would have something to stick to and covered it.  When I was done, I put felt pads on all of the corners.


Then it was all ready to roll for our gathering the next day.

Sunday morning, we did an early workout which handed us our butts as usual.  Actually, Friday night the past 2 weeks caught up to me, and I'm still trying to get my legs to cooperate since I'm screwed from the hips down.  Oy.  So 20 minutes of the Transform 20 Burn on the aerobic step and then 25 minutes with Joel on Chest and Tri's.  Round three was where my arms burnt out completely.  I used a softball and yoga block to get some leverage for deep release going.  Then mom came over for the cookout which amazingly the weather cooperated for, and we had a cloudy then later a sunny day.  Oh, and my little DIY project worked perfectly.



She stayed for 6 hours, and we still had a grocery store run to finish.  I made dinner, homemade Chinese stir fry and now it's after 9pm and the weekend is over...again.

How was your weekend?  Need a nap pod?

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Friday, June 14, 2019

What I'm Reading This Week #24

Happy Friday all!  Week 2 of LIIFTformation is in the books (well, it will be tonight) and we are both thankful for a rest day tomorrow!  This was our workout schedule this week:

Sunday- LIIFT4: WK 2 CHEST & TRIS Transform20: WK 2 POWERFUL
Monday- LIIFT4: BACK & BICEPS Transform20: WK 2 BURN
Tuesday- Transform20: WK 2 STRONGER 21 Day Fix RT: Abs 10 min
Wednesday- LIIFT4: W2 SHOULDERS Transform20: WK 2 FASTER (ultimate butt kicker)
Thursday-LIIFT4: WK 3 LEGS  Transform20: WK 2 CUT
Friday- Transform20: WK 2 BALANCED LIIFT4: STRETCH

Thankfully tonight is a lighter workout which we need and I'll look forward to my Epsom salt bath more than usual this week.  Between the workouts, the medical profession being a joke and our credit card being compromised yet again, and the Mr had to practically work a double yesterday, I just want ONE freakin' week where I don't NEED the weekend just to wash away the crap of the previous week.  That's all we've been dealing with since we got back.  

But enough of that crap, let's get to...



Gentle Stretches and Exercises for Achilles Tendon Pain  (Good ones!)

5 Foods Rich in Vitamin D That Might Help You Sleep Better  (Yes, please!)

17 Delicious Ways to Use Old Bananas  (Can't wait to try some of these.)

The Guide to Strong Boundaries  (Definitely worth a read)

15 Hidden Dangers in Your Home You Should Never Ignore   (Don't put these things off.)

Please Stop Trying to 'Encourage' Fat Athletes When You See Us Exercising  (Ugh, look, I get what she's getting at especially being a coach so she's technically not trying to lose weight but this is bordering on stupid for me.  As someone who has had something crappy yelled at her from a passing car twice, I would much rather someone yell something encouraging if they feel compelled to.  What matters is how I react to it.  My personal reaction is "maybe I inspired someone today."  Nothing says a skinny person is fit so maybe they'll think "if she can do it, I can too."   A cheery "you go girl!" should not be viewed as a "microaggression."  😬

46 Life Hacks You’ll Wish You Knew Sooner  (I'm going to put a few of these to work, for sure!)

People Are Deeply Moved By This Daughter’s Simple Reminders To Her Mother With Dementia  (A good idea for those in the early to beginning moderate stages that can still comprehend words.)

Possible Alzheimer's prevention breakthrough reported   ($1 BILLION is needed to get this vaccine into human trials and $277 BILLION is the estimated cost from Alzheimer's/dementia-related care this year.  This MUST be funded.  The billionaires club needs to step up and donate for the wellness of humanity.)

Steve Lawrence Has Been Diagnosed With Alzheimer's: 'What I Feel Is Gratitude, Love, and Hope' 
(Oh my heart.  We discovered Steve and Eydie's Christmas music with the album "That Holiday Feeling" about 8 years ago or so and I was obsessed.  We always said how you could hear the love between them as they sang to each other.)

That Weird Leg Jerk as You're Falling Asleep? Here's What It's Called - and Why It Happens   (That only tends to happen when I fall asleep spooning against the Mr.  😄)

We've got some cleaning to do since we're having company Sunday for what was supposed to be a cookout but the weather isn't making it look so hot.  It's also grocery weekend which is always a joy, so lots to do!

What are y'all getting into this weekend?

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Thursday, June 13, 2019

New Tool in Our Journey

We've been tracking our food for a decade.  We use an outdated software version of FitDay that doesn't get updated, but we've built a database over that decade, and it was hard to do anything else.  We've tried MyFitnessPal for extended periods of time and didn't like it.  I even did it with a few family members, and it was nice, but when they slacked off, we didn't like it enough to stay with it.

I follow a vegan vlogger (started as a Hawaii/DIY vlogger and I've just stuck with her)  She's doing a new raw series that is okay (I couldn't eat that way all the time), but she did introduce me to a new tracker, Cronometer.   It's free with ads, and the amount of nutritional information it gives is insane!  My doc has been testing us for Vitamin D deficiency, and we're pretty deficient.  (She recently had us up our 2000IU's to 3000 because we're still on the low end.)  So I was interested in looking at where I was getting any vitamin D from my food, but then I began to get interested in other measures and found out I was severely deficient in things that FitDay and MyFitnessPal weren't showing me.

Here's how I use it (the free version) and I apologize for the pics being so small, you'll have to click to enlarge them.

Based on my weight and my desire to lose 2 lbs per week, the circled "budget" is what I would be restricted to if I did nothing but share a blood supply with the couch.  (Which I do most of the time.)  So anything I burn exercise wise is added to my calorie budget.

(click to enlarge)

Then I start adding my food for the next day.  I base what I enter on what are either consistent measurements I stick to (like always 5 oz of cantaloupe at lunch) or the high end of something whose weight could change based on changing size.  IE- bananas are always entered as 4.5oz before I eat them, but I know they'll likely be closer to 3.50 to 4 ounces which I go back and correct after I weigh them for the meal.

(click to enlarge)

To save time, I'll make "recipes" of something I have all of the time like my "lunch veggies" includes 2 broccoli florets, 2 cauliflower florets, 1 large radish and 1 medium stalk of celery.  Instead of adding them separately, I can add that one custom piece and get all four in.  I've done this for turkey tacos as well when you have measurements that aren't going to change which makes it easy.

(Click to enlarge)

The deficit tells me how much I have to burn during my workout to make sure I hit my caloric goal for my 2 lb per week weight loss...on paper.  Since we always exercise before dinner, after I enter the workout calories burned, I can take a peek and see where I'm at on nutrients and calorie budget and adjust where necessary.



(Click to enlarge)
I wasn't hungry, so I didn't eat those extra 215 calories.  If you hover over the budget, it'll remind you of your weight goal and what you can do if you want to lose more or it seems to encourage you to eat the calories which I may or may not do depending on how I feel.


(Click to enlarge)

But the thing that has been the game changer for me is the Cronometer layout of all of the macro breakdowns.  This was a particularly good day, and I know that I will likely not hit 100% of all of the time because once you add exercise, the targets change.


While my vitamin E and zinc levels were low, they were about 40% higher than the previous week when I was just trying to get a baseline of where I was.  I paid more attention to the nutrients I was critically always low on and am working to up those as naturally as possible.  I was consistently low on Vitamin K and selenium and now hit them over 100% every day.  Why are these important?  Selenium does a few amazing things like lower inflammation in the body, reducing buildup of plaque in the arteries (which can eventually go to the brain contributing to dementia), actively helps prevent some cancers.  You know how we get it?  We eat one brazil nut per day!  Our diet is constantly low in selenium without it, and by eating half to one 5g brazil nut, you get everything you need from it.  We take it as a supplement but its natural, which is always better.  Here are more benefits of selenium.  Be careful though, you can take too much, and one nut is all you need per day for supplement purposes.

Vitamin K is essential for blood clotting (wish we'd known this on our vacations this year since the Mr has had a resurgence of nosebleeds), bone, cognitive and heart health.  I add 1/4 ounce of dandelion green to an omelet, salad or side dish or one kiwi to get my vitamin K for the day.  Because of its effect on the blood, you should consult your doctor before adding these foods for vitamin K supplementation.

I'm also always low on zinc and vitamin E, which I'm working on getting higher.  Zinc is always very low, so I will take a supplement at the end of the day in the form of 1/4 of a 30mg zinc pill.  Sunflower seeds have really helped up my vitamin E.  Given the hard workouts we're doing this month, my goal is to try to give my body as many of the nutrients as it needs to properly recover.  It's almost like a game to see how you can get the most nutritional bang for your buck out of the foods you eat.  You can also click on a nutrient, and it'll tell you what foods gave you those nutrients that day.  Like here's where my vitamin K came from that day.


I've even started charting my Omega 3 vs. 6.  You need both, but you need more 3 than 6 (and 9).  Omega 3's help clear fat out of the liver, keeps your heart healthy, reduce dementia risk, and lots of other health benefits.  If I've entered my food and see I'm low on 3's, then I will add chia seeds to my oatmeal, or if I can't find a place to fit it in, I'll do a flaxseed supplement which is rare but can work in a pinch.  You can read more here about how to balance your omegas.

You can add your exercise in for the day by either choosing from their database or doing a custom entry like I do.

I like to see the exact workout I did that day, so I enter it from my calendar and the info from my HRM.  The Mr has an Apple watch, and it syncs up with it.  Obviously, it doesn't list the exact workout he did that day, but he could write a note if he wanted to with that info.

You can also add other measurements to track from your weight loss to height, blood pressure info, blood glucose, mood, how much sleep you got, cholesterol, etc.



 You can also write a note in your diary for the day to get anything off of your chest, note certain conditions that might affect things or mini triumphs.




Cronometer has all kinds of breakdowns like that, but the free version does have some irritants.  You can't group your meals together to see the breakdown of each one which I do like in FitDay/MFP.  The Mr will write a note to separate them visually, and that seems to work for him.  But if you pay $35 for the year (as opposed to monthly at $6), it lets you break them down by meal, no ads, "ask the Oracle" (like in Neverending Story) for food suggestions on how to reach certain nutrition goals, timestamps, advanced charting, priority support and sharing your recipes and custom foods with others.

With two of us using it in the house, that would be $70 per year when we paid that back in the day for one program that lasted us over 10 years.  I don't know when we as a society thought "hey, I'd rather pay yearly for something instead of software I only have to buy once" but here we are.  So yeah, we'll stick with the free one for now, and I will keep working to incorporate more foods that have the nutrients I'm lacking.

Have you used Cronometer before?

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Wednesday, June 12, 2019

So, I'm Curious...




How many of you actively work out and/or eat healthy most of the time.  I'd like to hear from as many people as possible including you lurkers.  I don't bite.  😏

How many days a week do you work out, and what are your favorite types of workouts?

How many days a week do you eat healthy (if at all and it's okay if you're not there yet) or do you follow a more 80/20 approach daily?

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Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Food Review: Trader Joe's Jalapeno Sauce

Whilst dodging employees popping a squat on the floor shopping at Trader Joe's one night, I spied this sauce that was calling my name.


I'm a fan of all things spicy but jalapeno is a milder spice which means the Mr can enjoy as well without breathing fire.  I wasn't quite sure what I was going to use it for but I knew I could find something.

Here's a peek at the nutritional info:


Here are the ingredients:


But how did it taste?

I love it!  The Mr really liked it too especially given how I used it for the first time.


I made cauliflower rice with some of it mixed in and also finished grilled shrimp with it.  It's creamy, only moderate on the spice scale (if that) but you can definitely taste the jalapeno essence.  It would be a perfect marinade too for chicken or fish.  I'm not sure how well it would work with pork but steak fajitas would definitely benefit with a toss of this at the end.  Pour a little into some guac for a mild, spicy flavor while keeping the color.  The possibilities are endless and I know we'll be stocking up on a few more bottles before they yank it.  I'm going to say this is probably summer only so get it when you see it!

How would you use this sauce?

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Monday, June 10, 2019

Week One and You Painted What? Weekend Recap

Happy Monday, everyone!

Friday morning was one of amazement because we had a service person 1) show up on time to the minute 2) do the job right 3) was polite and cleaned up and 4) told us how to save money on another job we are calling him back to do.  I'm confused.  I'm befuddled.  I need smelling salts. You can bet he will be our plumber from this point on should we need one!!

Friday was also the official end of week one of the LIIFTformation calendar.  We got our butts beyond handed to us, and while it was hard and challenging, it was the good kind.  The kind that warranted me over 700-900 calorie burns on half the workouts!  The Mr knows I usually curse during workouts, but there were some new ones created for sure.  I spent three of those days with my strap on ice packs on my knees because step workouts alone are challenging, but Shaun T's are some level that makes you question his sanity.  (I guess he did invent the Insanity workouts so yeah, confirmed.)  You add those before or after a full lift session with Joel four days a week, and your butt is TIRED!  We actually did half of them early to work around schedules for things but were soooo thankful they were done for the day because there is an impending dread when you have to wait when your workouts are that challenging.  We have to modify the step things quite a bit (even some of the skinny folk have problems keeping up on there) but it by no means makes it easier.  We're soaked every single time.  Last night started week two, and as with each progressing week, they are going to get harder.


This week will be the actual test because I lost my "period two" and was a little irritated that I didn't get at least one extra pound than I consistently lose each month when Aunt Flo is in town.  So I'll be happy if this week warrants the same loss.

That night we went to Home Depot to get the concrete paint for the AC pad so we would have it to get done early and be on our way.  Saturday was the one day I was looking forward to going to this shop about 25 minutes away to look at some frillies I thought I saw for the house.  They're only open three days a week, and if you don't get there early, you might as well forget it.  The Mr taped off the area...



...and I painted on the schtuff.  I knew immediately it was wrong.  The little dot on the top of the lid looked like the right color, but it did not look remotely close on the pad.  I said it needed to dry way darker and hoped it would.  It didn't...even after another coat. 


Next came a series of unfortunate miscommunications that left the Mr and I ripping at each other, me in tears that we're always having to friggin' fight for something to be right and going back to HD to get a way darker color because obviously getting the one that matches exactly in the brochure is going to look nothing like it.  So I went back to painting when we got home, and it looked better, still not what I wanted but I no longer cared, I just wanted it done.


We decided to eat lunch before we headed out.


Vegan burger, sweet potato fries, and corn on the cob.  Yum!

We went to the store I wanted to go to, and of course, they were sold out of the things I was interested in, and the things I thought I wanted that they did have were misrepresented in size, so it was a bummer to drive that far to come up empty-handed.  I really wish the lady who does the paintings I like would open an Etsy shop or something so we didn't have to drive that far for a crap shoot plus I wouldn't have to hear the owner's high pitched vocal fry that makes me want to drive a stake through my eye on a good day.  We stopped at another store on the way home and would you believe what I saw already?



While I love Fall as much as the next gal, I'm not quite ready for it yet, but pumpkins do make me smile.  We came home and painted some stones that sit on the AC pad to keep critters out.  The Mr didn't think it would look good, I thought it would so we painted two sides to keep our options open.  We left the paint liner outside to get a couple things done, and the Mr saw it blew over from the drop cloth to some patio stones...of course.  I told him not to wipe it, blot it up while I got hot water and soap.  I used a tile brush to wet it, and it soaked into the sand.  The Mr said it looked better with the diluted paint water.  All of this pollen from early spring settled into the sand and it looked like crap.  The thought of spending another night like this didn't sound like fun, but you know, painting sand sounds like a good way to spend a cool Saturday night, doesn't it?   We painted between each brick for just over an hour until we lost light.  We liked what we saw in the night and waited to see what it would look like in the daytime. 



A local pizza place started carrying cauliflower pizzas, and I'm pretty sure all they did was buy CauliPower crusts wholesale and put their crap on top since they only come in 10" pies.   I have to say though, we were both impressed.  I asked if they gave us the right pizza because it tasted like full on yeast crust.  We had them do it well done, so I think it helped that much more.  We'd definitely get it again, but I did make a nice hearty salad to go with it because it was basically 2" over a personal sized pizza.  Baby kale and baby spinach, dandelion greens, nutritional yeast, cauliflower, broccoli, and red cabbage.  Then we binge-watched season two of Cobra Kai until 1:30am.  Zabka is the man.

Before we knew it, it was Sunday, we felt broken just from 70 minutes contorted the night before, and we had a scintillating day of paver sand painting ahead of us.  We streamlined the process with food squirt bottles for the diluted paint and paper towels or else we'd still be painting.  It was still a pain in the...well, everywhere because I think we were out there for 5 hours total.  Then, you know, we still had the LIIFTformation workout to do which was Chest and Tri's and 20 minutes of hell on a step.  We both wanted to skip soooo bad, but we didn't, and while I'm proud of us, it sucked.  We had to get some produce for the week, and with each minute, I could feel my body stiffening more and more. 


We got home, and the Mr cut my watermelon and cantaloupe while I finished this up.  I popped ibuprofen to hopefully help with this insanity.  I know you're all jealous that you didn't get to paint sand this weekend too.

So how did you spend your weekend?

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Friday, June 7, 2019

What I'm Reading This Week #23

Happy Friday all!  It's been a long but productive week.  The concrete dudes finally came out Wednesday and did their little leveling job.  Well, not little...$400 please but we're trying to get reimbursed by the HOA because the bylaws say that shouldn't have been our responsibility even though the newest company to take over said no.  The guy even said that shouldn't be our responsibility and worded our invoice to make that clear so...fingers crossed.  Today we're supposed to have the hose bib replaced which honestly hasn't been right from day one.  Then we should be able to stain the concrete pad and the patio should truly be done.  Only took almost a full year.

Let's level into...




Retailers Pull Fairlife Products Amid Animal Abuse Allegations in Video  (*Pause local newcast video on landing- does not show the graphic video according to them, I won't watch it even if it's blurred.*  We will be pulling Fairlife milk from our shelves as well and I'm a bit ashamed I didn't do more research on them years ago.  We saw sweet little baby calves every day in Montana and Wyoming roaming free, enjoying the sunshine and we fawned over them every time we passed- they made us so happy.   We noted how none of the grass-fed cows had stinky poop and we should know, we shared the property with them in Montana.  You know what didn't make us happy?  Driving home through Nebraska, we passed the first "factory farm" we'd ever seen.  It was DISGUSTING.  A literal mountain of crap a minimum of 20' tall in the middle of their "pasture" which had no grass by the way because they were all shoulder to shoulder with no room to even lay down or turn around.  Even with the vents closed in the car, the horrible smell of poop and a rotten smell was ungodly and lasted for 5 miles after we passed.

Your Self-Imposed Beliefs May Be Aging You — Here's How To Break Free  (Worth a try)

12 Exercises That Are Safe to Do With Knee Pain  (Keep those babies safe!)

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Be More Optimistic   (I need to incorporate a few more of these.)

Cardio Isn't the Best Way to Burn Belly Fat - Here's What Trainers Want You to Do Instead   (Basically what we're doing this month.  Fingers crossed.)

Burpees For People Who Can't Do (or Don't Like!) Burpees, Straight From 2 Trainers  (We do the elevated one and it is quite...jarring.)

3 simple ways to know if a watermelon is ripe  (Thump da melon)

5 Of The Best Inflammation-Fighting Foods To Eat All Summer Long  (All except #3)

12 Ways To Make Yourself Poop ASAP, According To Gut Health Experts  (Be right back.)

Guy Out For A Run Suddenly Realizes He's Being Followed   (Ahhh, so cute!!)

Grads Burst Into Laughter As Dog Steals The Show During Ceremony  (Piss on your future!)

I am hoping for a chill weekend. It doesn't appear to be gross hot conditions and I know that won't last long.   I want to get the A/C pad stained so we can get the patio put back together (NEVER to be moved again if I can help it!)

What are you up to this weekend?

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Thursday, June 6, 2019

It's a Trap!

Some of you sci-fi fans might've immediately gone here reading that title:


While Admiral Ackbar was right, that's not what I'm talking about.  I'm talking about this:


I'm talking about your trapezius muscles.  More specifically my trapezius muscles that totally bunged up on me and got me to the point I needed a deep tissue massage to get some relief.  I wasn't able to turn my neck, and I created a perfect storm with new to us workouts over the previous two months until they reached their breaking point.  It doesn't take hard workouts to screw your traps either.  Do you use your smartphone?  Do you use a laptop?  Do you have bad posture?  Then you're at risk for getting head and neck pain as well.  First, let's see where your trapezius muscles are located as shown below in red.




They go from your neck, the top of your shoulders and shoulder blades to the middle of your back.  They include muscles that help hold your head up and leaning your head forward to work on your computer all day or scrolling social media all day and night long is going to stress those muscles.  In my case, we were doing a lot more strength training (like we're doing this month) and doing modified burpees that were being done on a folding chair to reduce the amount of body weight but it was still a trauma to go from reverse lunges to slamming half of my body weight down on...you guessed it...my traps.    So how can we keep ourselves from getting text neck or making sure we're treating our traps with love?

1)  Focus on good posture and keep your shoulders away from your ears.  If you're like me when you're typing and get into it, your neck disappears.  Sit up straight, shoulders down and no shallow breathing.  Also, make sure your desk is ergonomically aligned.  If you work in an office, most places do ergonomic assessments for this very reason because they know if you develop health issues related to a poorly set up desk, they could be in hot water.  If you work from home, this guide could give you the start you need to keep everything in line.

2)  Stretch!

Sounds so simple, doesn't it?  But these stretches done a few times a day can keep head, neck, and pain between shoulder blades at bay.

Head to Shoulder Stretch- With your shoulders relaxed, gently tilt your head to the side so your ear leans toward the shoulder. Switch sides. Hold the position for 10-15 seconds.

Diagonal stretch- Gently lean your head diagonally forward so your chin leans toward the opposite shoulder. Hold this position for 10 to 15 seconds then switch sides.

Chin to Chest Stretch- Gently drop your chin toward your chest. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds.

Shoulder Rolls-  Roll your shoulders forward for 15 counts and backward for 15 counts to keep the shoulders loose and limber.

Exaggerated Shoulder Shrug-  I love this one.  While you can do regular shoulder shrugs just to loosen some of the tension from the day, this one works best for me, especially first thing in the morning.  I lean forward while sitting on the edge of the bed so my chest is on my thighs.  Then I shrug my shoulders as close to or in line with my ears.  I usually hear some good snap, crackle and pops in there.

Arm Across the  Chest Stretch- Place your right arm across your chest, with the elbow slightly bent. With your left hand, grip the right arm just above the elbow.  Gently pull the arm across the body until you feel a stretch in the middle of your back.  Hold for 30 seconds, and repeat on the other side.

You can also get a tennis ball and stand against a door frame.  Place the ball in the middle of your back roll the trap muscles up and down to keep things loose.  This is especially relieving after a workout to keep things from tightening up and piling on the tension in those muscles.


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