Monthly Archives: November 2012

super badass

I am in rather joyous spirits! :D I managed to convince myself to get my ass to the gym yesterday (this is somewhat of an ordeal at times, because, much as I do love working out, school can be pretty draining), and it was a good thing I went! (I happened upon a whole lot of ego boosters.)

I’m basically the only girl that ever ventures into the free weights portion of our gym, and there was shit everywhere today (a lot of the kids here are apparently incapable of re-racking their weights). I saw one of the guys in my class at the bench press and asked if he’d been in between sets on the squat rack or anything (he was not). He helped me move stuff out of the way so it would expedite the process of me being able to use it. He’s a good soul. I liked his story on how he “lost a high school cheerleader” (aka 100 pounds) when he first decided to start lifting/eating healthy.

I do not have such an inspirational story because I’ve always been pretty scrawny (I’ve only really gained around 52-ish pounds and 4 inches in the past 13 years; I weighed 68 pounds and was 4’11” in 6th grade, so go figure). Aside from not wanting to disgrace my major, my goal when I first started lifting was to look small and unthreatening, but to be really effing strong, so people would be in for a surprise if they ever tried to mess with me. While that still remains a goal, it has expanded to basically encompass my desire to be able to do half a billion moves on the pole and on silks that requires a crapload of strength, flexibility, or both.

I’ve taken to just doing abs in between sets of heavy lifting for maximum time efficiency, so during one of those “breaks,” aforementioned guy (I can’t exactly call him a friend because we haven’t had too many conversations in weeks’/months’ past–he forgot his ID, so I let him into the gym a couple weeks ago and that’s basically how we met) turned to me and said, “You’re a beast, Farrah!” (I’d been doing squats.)

F: Why thank you, good sir! (Yes, I really do talk like this to people in real life. :X )
S: You’re really strong. Did you used to compete or anything?
F: hahaha, no, I’m not that hardcore. I just do this for fun. One of my goals is to be able to deadlift twice my body weight. (Since previous goal of 1.5x my body weight has been achieved. :D!)
S: Really? I’m surprised you can’t do that already.

I explained to him my slight apprehensions of adding too much more weight on even though I know I could do more because I was afraid of effing over my already somewhat-misaligned spine. To me, it’s really saddening because deadlifts are actually my favorite lift. (Although these days, because of my wariness, squats have been fast catching up on my list of favorites.) The breaks I’ve had from lifting have been due to stupid shit like effing over my spine in late 2009-early 2010 and late 2011-early 2012, as well as the lack of a gym with free weights from fall of 2010-early 2011 and…let’s face it, it’s also because I fell in love with pole dancing and spent over half of 2011 basically living at Bel’s studio. I was like a piece of furniture that moved around there.

So if you take all that into account and then backtrack to when I first started lifting (last day of March in 2009), my deadlift started at 70 and (so far) has peaked at 185. I started squats at 65 and am currently at 155. Progress has been pretty slow-going though, because I’ve honestly only improved 65 and 45 lbs, respectively, since early May of 2009. Suffice to say, my weight lifting awesomeness was a lot better when I first started (which is typical due to a whole lot of physiology that I will not go into). I still partially attribute this progress to my ex, since he’s the one who started me up on it, partly because he saw the potential greatness in me (haw haw :O ), but also because my living habits at the time frightened him. (Let’s just say that he met me shortly after I’d climbed out of ochem hell, where I would often have a billion cups of jasmine green tea and Nature Valley Oats & Honey granola bars. I ate over 500 of those and the Fruit & Nut ones that school year, so really, I can’t blame him for being horrified. It was a dark and terrible time.)

Unfortunately, I have since acquired a couple stupid habits and my form for deadlifts has apparently gone to partial shit since then, which would also explain the effing up of my lower back. I started out with Romanian deadlifts and I’m not sure I ever actually learned the proper way to do a regular one. After I did one rep, guy-in-my-class (Steve) asked if I’d mind if he gave me a few tips. (Nope. It was nice of him to ask though; tip guys at the gym are usually the worst.) It was like magic. :O What I’d been forgetting to do = flexing my butt, which was putting all kinds of strain in my lower back. He alerted me of this by poking me at where my piriformis would be located (this attests to the comfort level our class basically has with each other; after OPP and anterior L5 counterstrain, this kinda thing doesn’t faze you anymore) and demonstrated its effectiveness by having me poke him while he was doing one without flexing vs. flexing. I also haven’t been driving the bar straight up. Mysteries solved! I’m not all apprehensive of doing deadlifts anymore! :D!

He also showed me a super easy way to drag the weights off the barbell (easily my least favorite part of lifting, especially when assholes decide not to put their shit away–can you tell that’s one of my pet peeves? >_>), and got me to simultaneously realize and kick the habit I apparently had (I seriously never noticed ._.) of looking at the bar/shifting my weight around while I was picking up the bar to do squats, and the weird shifty one-side-at-a-time sort of deal I’ve been doing (and will never do again, because I just realized how terrible it was for my back, holy shit no wonder it would hurt ._.) when I’m putting the bar back into the rack.

Load up the bar, pick it up, take a good step back with one foot and then the other. Don’t move em’ anymore. Do your thing. Step forward until the bar hits the rack on both sides–you don’t need to look at it while you’re doing that because it’s not like it moved or anything while you were lifting–and set it down. Why did I never do this before?! ;_; Better late than never, I guess.

S: I’m going to make you a champion, Farrah. You definitely have the talent for it.

Hells yes! :D (I find this particularly flattering because he used to compete in powerlifting. :D!) Mark my words, kids! I am on my way to greatness! (Or at least, I’m working on it.)


Loaded Lunchtime Oatmeal

I got this one from ohsheglows and made it while Hurricane Sandy was wreaking havoc everywhere. I modified it a little by adding a can of roast beef in and basically just doubling the recipe, since I didn’t want to have to make a new batch each time (less dishes to wash, less time wasted, you know the drill). This may well be the first time I’ve ever actually made oatmeal in a pot (I kid you not; it’s always been microwaving and running off for me and my time-urgency-ridden type A personality).

This was full of savory goodness, and definitely nice for a cold winter-y (except it was still fall…) day. Even my cat wanted some, but I wouldn’t let him have any. I’m pretty protective over my food (and he had his own) :X

Loaded Lunchtime Oatmeal

-1 cup old fashioned oats
-3.5 cups water
-12 oz. frozen veggies (corn, broccoli, red bell peppers, cauliflower)
-freshly ground black pepper
-pinch of sea salt
-2 cloves of garlic, minced
-1 can black beans
-parsley flakes
-“eat well enjoy life” edamame hummus with roasted red pepper & sesame seeds
-more pepper

1) Throw oats and water into a pot on medium heat and stir frequently for 5 minutes.
2) Add frozen veggies directly into pot, along with the black pepper, sea salt, and garlic. Cook for about 7-8 more minutes on low-medium heat, stirring often.
3) Pour into a bowl and add toppings!

new methods

It’s getting harder to wake up. :[ We watched a movie the other night since it’s still early in this block and there was a littleeee bit of free time in our lives (it was also in honor of Bruce Lee, since it was his birthday the next day).

But it also meant that I went home at 3 a.m. (definitely not the worst it’s ever been, har har, but still), so he said he’d check to make sure I was alive for class the next day, since we had a mandatory class in the morning.

Apparently, he tried knocking 3 times, but I didn’t answer (because I was out cold). On his third attempt, he left me a can of magical substance that you spray on your windshield to get rid of the ice (thankyouxinfinity) on my porch. He also texted me several times and tried calling, but I was unfortunately dead to the world. In a last-ditch effort, he drove his car up to my bedroom window and honked the horn, hahaha.

(In case you’re wondering, that worked splendidly. :O I woke up wondering why someone would be honking at such an early hour. ._. I suck at life.)

Tuna Quinoa Cakes

I made these by accident. I meant to make sweet potato cakes and somehow ended up with these instead (I was spacing out). This was missing half a cup of sweet potatoes, apparently, so I guess I wasn’t completely out of it. I just…didn’t remember to include it. I’m awesome like that. They’re good though (assuming that you like tuna, obviously), and pretty darn healthy! I imagine some kind of yogurt tahini sauce or somethin’ would be kinda awesome on it. Recipe from here.

Tuna Quinoa Cakes

-2 cans tuna, drained
-¾ cup quinoa, cooked
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-1 tbsp lemon juice
-1 egg
-¼ c plain 0% Fage Greek yogurt
-1 tbsp dijon mustard
-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
-1 tsp paprika
-½ cup whole wheat breadcrumbs

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.In a small bowl, combine the tuna and other ingredients and stir until well combined.
2) Bake for 20 min, flipping once. These can also be pan-fried, and you can use salmon instead of tuna.

cryptic post of the day

I didn’t know it was possible for people like this to exist.

But on another note, I found this following conversation pretty hilarious. To preface, it was because I was taking a shower today and Kitler decided to jump in with me. I would have minded less if he hadn’t decided to walk in and out of his litter box afterward, because Ninja’s definitely jumped into the shower with me on multiple occasions, but she didn’t send litter flying everywhere afterward. :'( RIP, clean and sparkly bathroom. You had a good run.

K: I didn’t know cats liked showers.
F: I have really weird cats. Ninja’s done this before too, minus the litter box part.
M: And your roommates!
F: Yes, but I didn’t mind my roommates, because they dry themselves off. :[
M: There’s obviously something about you and showers that indicates community.