Be Well: Sumo Deadlift High Pull


I hope everyone had a very wonderful holiday yesterday! Now who's ready to start working off that Christmas weight?

In an effort to demonstrate that the workouts featured on this blog are good for girls and guys, today I'm featuring a simple, effective exercise modeled by my oh-so-fit brother Greg. I know, the name of the exercise sounds intimidating - sumo? High pull? However, I promise this one is so simple even the newest of gym goers can do it. And the best part about it? You work your entire body in one smooth motion. Follow the steps below to try it yourself:


Start with knees bent near 90 degrees, back flat (so important!) and hands grasping the weight. While we used a kettlebell in this demonstration, you can also do this with a free weight - just lay the free weight lengthwise and hold it with your hands side by side (thumbs touching).


Next, stand up using your legs and keeping your back flat. Has anyone else noticed that we return to this back flat concept week after week? It's because it is absolutely integral in making sure that you don't injure yourself. So, lift with your legs!


As you continue to stand up, use the power generated by your legs to start lifting the weight towards your chin. Your elbows should bend straight out to the side.



At the top of the move, the weight should be right under your chin and your arms should be even with your shoulders. 


Lower the weight the exact same way you lifted it.



When you reach the starting position, tap the weight on the ground (if you're using a kettlebell) or lower it below your knees (if you're using a free weight) and repeat the sequence outlined above. Do as many reps as you can in one minute for a great strengthening workout.

After one final Crossfit workout with my siblings this morning, my husband and I are Austin, Texas bound! I've had an absolutely wonderful time in Houston, but I'm looking forward to seeing my husband's family and getting to have a few delicious meals in that fun city. Have a great Wednesday!

Be Well: Squats to Press

Today I am very excited to begin combining weight lifting concepts that I've already discussed on this blog. Here I'm featuring a combination of squats and bicep curls to shoulder presses. This is such a fantastic way to work your entire body while keeping your heart rate up - you should try it!

Start with feet shoulder-width apart, weights at your side.

Squat by sending your hips back, keeping your back flat, and your chest up.

Squat down as far as you can.

Once you're standing again, start your bicep curl.

At the top of your bicep curl, open your elbows out to make a goalpost shape with your arms.

Press to full extension. Don't forget to keep your abs tight - it will improve your form throughout the entire exercise.

End in the same position you started in. Repeat this move for two minutes and add it to your normal workout for a full-body strengthening experience!

As I was walking home tonight, admiring all of the Christmas decorations that are going up around my neighborhood, I started thinking about when the last Christmas season ended. I distinctly remember packing up our ornaments and throwing away our tree while lamenting that the next Christmas season was so far away. And yet here it is, back again - where did that year go? I think that's how you know that it was a particularly happy year - you're so happy to look back on what you've done, and yet you're so sad that it's already over. With the new Christmas season upon us, I'm hoping that when Christmas 2013 rolls around, I'm equally as amazed by how recent Christmas 2012 felt.

Have a great day.