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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

New website

I haven't posted for a long time but I have a good excuse! I've been working on my new website. Here you can check it out! inspiredfitstrong.com . You can start checking it out, because from now on that is where I will post.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

101 ways to be healthy

I was searching through some websites when I came in to this one http://www.revolutionaryact.com/101ways/. Visit the website and scroll on every reason and see what happens :) I think that is pretty smart, cool and motivating.

Yesterday's WOD:

100m sprint
100m sprint
10 pull-ups

Friday, August 19, 2011

Team WOD

More people start showing up for the workouts. I am seeing some great motivation in some of them. It is always so delightful to see somebody burning with desire to give his best and beat the WOD. In my group there are all kinds of people-from the former couch potatoe, through the pregnant lady to the professional athlete. That is what I like about crossfit. All these people have nothing in common in their daily life. They all have different dreams, different goals. Their fitness level is different but you know what? They all get united in the evening, to get away from their problems, to face their fears, to show how tough they are! Everybody gives their best and then leaves for home feeling happy with himself. I love the two hours after every workout when I receive all kinds of messages, with people being thankful for the way my practice made them feel. It is so nice to know that you are making a difference in somebody's life. It is nice seeing people accomplish their goals....people appreciating your time and effort to help them be who they truely want to be!

The WOD:
Twelve people showed up. So I devided them in three teams of four. Two people on the team were doing tire sprints(one sprints to the tire and then sprints back dragging it and the other one rests, till the two of them have 3x100(50metres sprint and 50metres tire sprints each).
The other two on the team are doing max rounds of 5pull-ups and 10 air squats.
The teams do it for 25minutes and then add up together the rounds from the pull-ups and air squats to see whoever won. The team that loses makes 400metres run and 20burpees.

25minutes teams of four:
3x100m. tire sprints
max rounds 5 pull-ups;10 air squats

There are NO EXCUSES for missing the practice

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Last WOD

1200m run
21 tire flips
21 pull ups
21 swings

800m run
15 tire flips
15 pull ups
15 swings

400m run
9 tire flips
9 pull ups
9 swings

That WOD was a lot of fun :) I made it up that way because I love tires, swings and pull ups :) And the running was just the extra torture :) You should try it! If you do not have a tire to flip around you could substitute it with deadlifts :)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Interview with Annie Mist Thorisdottir: Where hard work leads to triumph

Annie Thorisdottir-paul volting
A couple months ago when I did the nterviews with different crossfitters I admire, there was one lady that was really nice and forthcoming. She was one of the top crosfit athletes in the world( and currently the fittest on Earth) but that hasn't changed her personality. She was still wishful to take the time and answer the questions I prepared for her. Reading her interview you will see why she won the Crossfit games in 2011- the combination of dedication, hard work and talent are only few of the things that could describe Annie! And instead of writing more words that only belittle what she truely is, I will let you read what she had to say...

Introduce yourself:
 Annie Mist Thorisdottir.

How long have you being doing crossfit?
I started doing CrossFit 2 months prior to the CrossFit Games 2009

Have you been involved in some other sports before that?

I was in Gymnastics for about 8 years, then Ballet, Pole vaulting, Bootcamp and now CrossFit…

How did people around you accept the fact that you are doing crossfit? Did they take a jaundiced view of it?

I have gotten a lot of support around me, of course you always get to hear different opinions about CrossFit but none of them to bad… =)
Annie Thorisdottir

Do you have a nutrition plan that you follow? If yes, do you meet disapproval from you friends? Or do they understand why you eat the way you do?

I try to eat healthy and little processed food, have a lot of high quality protein. I’m not strict paleo since I do eat dairy products (we have a lot of really clean dairy products here in Iceland) and some grains. My friends that train understand it and the others respect why I do it.

What does crossfit mean to you and did it change your life in some way?

It means a lot to me, I found something that I love and really enjoy doing. Definitely changed my life a lot in many ways.
Annie Thorisdottir's triumph at the games

What is your favorite WOD and which one do you hate the most?

I love heavy chippers, pull ups, push ups and something with a lot of Olympic lifts. In the benchmark workouts I like Grace, Isabel, Angie, DT and McGhee. Probably my least favorite is something that involves a lot of running and a lot of MUs. =)

Is it hard for you to combine your daily tasks with workouts? And have you ever used the excuse that you are too busy to workout?

Not really I try to go according to schedule and that usually involves training…

What is your biggest accomplishment in crossfit so far?
I would have to say 11th place on the Games 2009 and 2nd place 2010 and 1st place in 2011...

Do you remember some funny story with you and crossfit?

I have a lot of them… probably the most memorable one is how I got to the games 2009. I had never done a CrossFit workout before but decided to compete at the Regionals in Iceland. I had an oral math exam earlier that same day = Stress and 2 hours of sleep so I slept between workouts! Ended up as a lot of fun though and a trip to the Games… =)

What advice would you give to the beginner crossfiters?
Try to enjoy every workout and think positively especially for the ones that you dread the most. Remember that it will only get better… ;)

Monday, August 1, 2011

The right approach to the future

Forget the past and build the present towards reaching your future
I bet that all of you have heard about Steve Jobs. He is one of the people that I really admire. Often times when I feel trapped or challenged to take an important decision I think about him and some of the things he says in his presentations. Actually right now I am reading a book about him called The Steve Jobs Way: iLeadership for a new generation. Eventhough the book is about his life, the obstacles he was challenged to overcome and the way he coped with the hand that life dealed at him, it is also a book that will make you think a lot about the way your life turns out to be. About the decisions you make, the dreams you chase and the risks you take.

In the book Steve says that great inventors create products that are the result or the fruit of their imagination, that let them build a world, in which they'd love to live. And that is a totally different approach to life, from the one where we just try to make the past better. I know it sounds kind of fancy and probably you feel confused but I am gonna try and make it clear.

Think about something in your past. A situation that you feel like you took the wrong decision...the time when somebody cheated on you, when somebody did something wrong and hurt you! How do you feel about it? DO you wish you could change it? Have you promised yourself that you won't ever let it happen again? And when challenged to face a similar situation in the present, you rewind the time back to the past, feeling scared that you will be hurt again or make the wrong decision, and thus considering your actions towards avoiding the repetition of this past situation. 

Use your imagination
Well that is the wrong approach! What you should do instead is when a situation is challenging you, the better thing to do is stop for a while. Look at everything that is happening and ask yourself: Where do I wanna be? What do I want to happen in the future? Where do I wanna go?...Then when you find the answers to those questions you will have the destination that your hearts wants to take you to! From there on, you should use that drive, all your abilities and your imagination to build your presents towards reaching the desired future. Someone once said that when you look at the past, you may trip in the present and fall in the future! Is this what you wnat your life to look like?

Many of us belittle the voice of our hearts. Many of us think that some dreams are way too impossible, so they are not worth fighting for. And thus the defeat is  forced out of the mouth of victory! As Steve Jobs says "Every opportunity starts with an unmet need." So find the answer to the question of what is your desired future...and strive for it!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The strength of the effort is the measure of the result

"The strength of the effort is the measure of the result!"

Is it one of those days when you feel tired? Even exhausted? All you can think of is your bed and your comfy pillow? You know you have a bunch of things that are waiting on you to be done...but the desire to take a break...walk away from everything and just rest is irresistable? What do you choose? Show some attitude and get the work done or just let it wait for tomorrow?

Truth is you always have a choice, and sometimes it is only a choice of attitude! And it is your attitude which determines where you go in life...wether you enjoy your triumphs or suffer your failures!

I will tell you a story. Back in 2005, when I was living in the USA and playing basketball, I had a goal. To become the best basketball player I could truly be! Pretty tough,right? Well I did not spend my time daydreaming about it. I worked hard for it. Every morning in 4:30a.m. my alarm went off. Did I want to get out of my bed, walk 3miles to the gym and practice? Hm...didn't feel like it...but in my heart I knew what I wanted to be, and I knew exactly how I was going to achieve it-WITH HARD WORK! So I used all the will I had and got out of the bed, went to the gym and gave it my all!

Did it pay off? Well at first it felt like evrything was a waste of time...the more I did, the less I seemed to get...but in life you have to keep pushing...keep walking! You never know what is hiding behind the turn on the corner....Just when I felt like quitting, I kept pushing my hardest and it all payed off. The next season I blew everybody! I played the best I have ever played. I became MVP at the Balkan Games; I won every single award there was to be won in my country, I played pretty good at the European championship and so on...

But guess what? It did not happen, while I was sitting and waiting! It happened because I took action, I worked hard, I refused to quit! Every morning you wake up, you have a choice! To strive for what you want or to put up with being mediocre!" To live is to choose. But to choose well, you must know who you are and what you stand for, where you want to go and why you want to get there.”

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Interview with Lauren Plumey-not just a woman...an inspiration

Lauren Plumey in action
In everything you do in life  you need to find something or somebody to light the fire in your heart. Sometimes that are people closest to us...and sometimes those are people that have never met us...they do not even know we exist. An year ago I started doing crossfit and there was a woman(a real crossfitter) that was my motivation, my role model. For the past year on my phone screen and on my computer wallpaper there is a picture of her.  Every ime I do not feel like practicing or I feel like eating junk I look at that picture and it gives me motivation to do the right thing in order to achieve the things that women has done. And you know what is the funny part? That I have never met her, neither has she. She did not even know about my existance till I asked her to give an interview for me. As I expected she turned out to be beautiful not only on the outside but also on the inside....probably you are wondering who she is?...Her name is Lauren Plumey and I will let her interview do the talking....

Introduce yourself.
My name is Lauren Plumey.  I am a 30-year-old affiliate owner and CrossFitter in Branford, CT, USA.  

How long have you being doing crossfit? 
I began doing CrossFit in April of 2008.

Have you been involved in some other sports before that? 
No...I was never considered an athlete in any regard.  I dreaded gym while I was in school.  However, I had been working out since the age of 14 religiously.  

 How did people around you accept the fact that you are doing crossfit?

Did they take a jaundiced view of it? I know that my friends that do not CrossFit and my family secretly think that I am a fitness fanatic.  In the beginning, my husband used to mock my constant banter of "the WOD."  Slowly, I began to persuade most of my friends to do CrossFit, including my husband.  He now owns the affiliate with me.  For those that I haven't been able to bring over to CrossFit, they wouldn't dare to say anything negative because they see that CrossFit works.  Its physical effects on my husband and I speak multitudes regarding the efficiency of CrossFit.

 Do you have a nutrition plan that you follow?

If yes, do you meet disapproval from you friends?Or do they understand why you eat the way you do?  I am a strict follower of the Paleo diet.  Most of my friends follow this diet as well (as most of them are also CrossFitters).  My Italian family thinks it is ridiculous that I NEVER plan to eat pasta again, but once again, my health (And their lack thereof) speaks for itself.  However, I never try to impose the diet on those that are not interested.

What does crossfit mean to you and did it change your life in some way? 

Oh my God..what a loaded question!  Well, first off, CrossFit made me an athlete.  I regret not finding it earlier in life.  It has taught me tenacity, and turned me into a problem solver, which I never was.  Prior to CrossFit, if things didn't come easy to me, I didn't attempt them.  Now, I ENJOY working for things.  CrossFit has also given me a healthy habit.  Through college, I made a habit of going out and partying.  Now, if I party too hard on Friday night, I can't perform the way I'd like to in the WOD on Saturday morning.  It has increased my confidence in all avenues of life and allowed me to forge friendships with like-minded people.

What is your favorite WOD and which one do you hate the most?

My favorite WOD is "The Filthy Fifty" (I love chippers), my least favorite is "JT" and the thruster/burpee WOD from the '09 Northeast Regionals (5 135/95 lb Thrusters, 10 burpees, 12 minute AMRAP)

Is it hard for you to combine your daily tasks with workouts?

And have you ever used the excuse that you are too busy to workout?  WORKOUT first WORK later!  I've called out of work to workout! I have found that, like anything in life, if it is important enough to you, you will find a way to squeeze it into your schedule.  So, yes, working two full-time jobs and training myself can get crazy, but I love it too much to make an excuse not to do it.

What is your biggest accomplishment in crossfit so far? 

 Qualifying for the CrossFit World Games two years in a row. Successfully running an affiliate.  

Do you remember some funny story with you and crossfit? 

  There are certainly a lot, but none that I am sure would transfer as humorously into text.

Lauren Plumey and her husband David
What advice would you give to the beginner crossfiters in Bulgaria?
  Don't be discouraged if it seems like you are the only one of your friends involved in this "insane fitness cult" Just as it did in the USA and Canada, it will spread like wildfire throughout the country in time.  Be patient~you will not be a CrossFit rockstar immediately.  But, like anything in life, the things that are worthwhile must be worked for.  "What we obtain too cheaply, we esteem to lightly."  True fitness is earned.

 And here is  a link to the website of her crossfit gym. http://shoreline.crossfit.com/

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Help others grow

"Try hard to get what you like...or you will be forced to like what you get!"

Have you ever found yourself in a situation when a friend or somebody close to you wanted to achieve something. They put a decent amount of work, but sometimes when it got hard they tried to find an excuse why it won't happen? They let the physical pain or physical incapability of doing something, take over their mind. They let the pain the body felt, crush their mind and force them to quit. What did you do? Did you encourage them to keep on pushing or did you just let them quit...telling it is ok, and that if they do not feel like doing it, they could just walk away?

I've noticed that most people that surround you will let you quit. They won't be brave enough to tell you that you are being a baby that always whines when things are not going the desired way. Most people won't have the courage to be tough on you and make you push harder, just because they think that this will make you hate them! But is this the right thing to do? Just let the once we love go the easy way and thus never find out how great they could be?

I think that if you really care about somebody you should treat him according to what he could be...what he could accomplish! People could rarely achieve something if they do not push beyond what they think is their limit. In life you should always be able to see the beauty, ehind the ugly. You should always be able to recognize the strength, behind the weakness!  You should expect things out of people and thus you will plant in them the seed of confidence...so they could truely believe they can achieve.

As a personal trainer you should be able to see the potential in the scrawny newcommer in the gym, that looks worse than my great grandmother in shorts...the one that lacks all physical skills you could think of. The newcommer that looks unmotivated and insecure. Make sure you light the fire inside....don't let him go easy when the WOD gets hard.  treat him as he is already the athlete you wish he could. At first he will be mad at you, he will hate you...but in the future he will be grateful for the way you treated him.As Johann Goethe once said "If you treat an individual as he is, he will remain how he is. But if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be and could be, he will become what he ought to be and could be."  What do you wish for the people you care of?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A different perspective

At the end of the day you either focus on what is tearing you apart or what is holding you together!

I watched a short scene from a movie, where there was a servent who was talking in fron of a group of teenagers. She showed them some pictures. They looked kind of blurry and they were taken from really really close. She asked them to guess what was the real object in the picture. One of them actually looked pretty disgusting. It was similar to a really close view of brain, but it did not look nice at all! They tried to hit off the object, but none of them guessed it right! At the end it turned out to be....A WALNUT! Then she said that sometimes in order to see the object you should look at it in a different perspective.

That got me thinking about how life goes on. Sometimes when you find yourself stuck in a difficult situation, things look hopeless. You feel like you are carrying world's burden on your back. You catch yourself thinking that it can't get any worse and probably often wonder why this is happening to you? How did you deserve it?-you'd ask. Well the story above made me think about life and the problems we face. Sometimes when you are in the mids of the problem, it looks like it can't be solved. Looks hard...and the more you try to find the solution the deeper you get stuck in it. But hold on...don't give in to desperation...remember the servent and her pictures? Remember how the disgusting thing in the picture turned out to be a simple walnut? Well, take that example and adjust it to your life. When you face an obstacle, don't dig deeper in it, just to find yourself drained and unable to cope with it. JUST LOOK AT IT FROM A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE!

Do you remember when we were little, how we loved to take the magnigier and look through it? Using it, you could se ethe smallest bug like an enormous tarantula! Even the smallest things, grew bigger if you looked at them through the lenses. But then...you just move the lenses away and it is still that small tiny bug it actually is. So, why are you scared now? What makes you feel that fear and insecurity? What if you are exagerating the situation just because you are looking from so close at it? Move further...let it rest! Don't stress over it and "the big tarantula will turn to a little bug", that won't scare you anymore.

When having a problem, don't give in to the negative emotions that try to overatke you! Be stronger than them....why? BECAUSE YOU ARE! Just remember that we are just a small part of the big Universe....and thus our problems are small on the background of world's disastours!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

I can...I will..I must...

"Every artist was first an amateur"-Ralph Waldo Emerson

The other day I had a workout with four guys. I've been training them for the last two weeks. They are still beginners but so far they are showing big motivation, dedication and hard work. I haven't had a client so far that gave up. Most people may feel frustrated if they feel tired, if they feel like quitting put usually they push hard and finish the WOD. Well that is not exactly what happened the other day.  During the workout there was a guy(Ivo) that was working out on his own. He is an advanced crossfitter and he is pretty damn good at it. One of the man from my group, obviously felt intimidated by the strong and athletic look, that Ivo had. At first I catched "my boy" throwing glances at him,admiring his abilities. Nothing wrong with that...Then he said " I will never be able to do half of it." I encouraged him that we all started from scratch and build on it, till we became what we are now!Do you remember the first time that they showed you the alphabet, the first time they encouraged you to read? You felt a little overwhelmed...found it hard...even impossible...reading a whole book looked like a mirage... well let's turn the time forward, and find you now, sitting on the couch  reading that thick book, without even thinking about it. See how far you've came? But it was a long road wasn't it? It is the same in the gym. When you see how the advanced athletes train, you should get yourself motivated. You should use the desire to be in their place, to push you towards reaching your full potential. You shouldn't pick on yourself for not being in the same shape. You shouldn't intimidate yourself...shouldn't feel inferior...you shouldn't give in to the desire to quit!...
That is what the boy in my group did. He quit! He was doing the WOD ( 5rounds: climbing ladder of 2deadlifts;1round Cindy), when he quit two rounds before the end. He gave up on the assisted pull-ups. I told him to take a breath and finish the WOD. He looked at me and said "I can't!"...but I assured him that there isn't I can't...there is only I do not want! After he heard this he kept pushing a little bit more, when he said "Oh, I am done for today." He walked away. When I tried to encourage him to take a rest and still finish the WOD he almost cursed me and said that he won't do a single exercise anymore. At first I felt a little frustrated, because that has never happened to me before. Usually I succeed in motivating people to work hard, and finish the workout, but not this time... But then I realized, that you can't give somebody something if they do not wanna take it. He didn't want my words of encouragement...he felt better feeling sorry for himself, comparing himself to somebody that has done the same thing all his life! But that's fine! I know he will be back. And this time hopefully  he will be stronger...mentally and physically.If you ever get yourself in the same situation...remember that sometimes people don't run far enough on their first wind to find out that they've got a second!Even when the competition gets tough...when it seems impossible...keep in mind THAT IMPOSSIBLE IS NOT A FACT. IT'S AN OPTION! It is up to you what you pick!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Be the change...

The soul of an athlete can change the game...the heart of an athlete can change the world...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

It is not the final destination...its the JOURNEY

Today after my favorite walk in the park, I went to visit my sister. We watched some TV and as I was surfing through the channels I saw one movie I watched a couple years ago- The Peaceful Warrior.It is a film adapted to the biography book of Dan Millman- "Way of the peaceful warrior". Ever heard of Dan Millman? If you haven't, I assure you that you've missed a lot!Dan Millman  is a former Trampolining world champion athlete, university coach, martial arts instructor and college professor, and an author of fourteen self help books. At the age of 17, he won the United States Gymnastics Federation (USGF)'s Trampoline Championship and competed in gymnastics at John Marshall High School in Los Angeles. While a freshman at  Berkley, he won the 1964 TrampolineWorld Championships inLondon.In 1968 he crashed with a motorcycle. The doctors told him he might never be able to walk. But with the determination and never ending will that Dan had...led by his love for the sport he returned ten months later.

But what I want to talk about is not his life in particular, but a scene from the movie that captures my attention and reaches my soul everytime I see it. When Dan returned from the injury the coach told him that he won't be allowed to compete in a competition for the Olympics because this way he threatened his health and even his life.  Dan was devestated. At a car-service station, he encounters an old man  who seems to know more about Dan's problem than Dan himself knows, whom Dan later nicknames "Socrates." So Dan went to Socrates and told him that he tried his best to give up gymnastics but that is the only thing he knew he loved for real. Socrate told him that no matter if they let him or not, he could still do it for himself and enjoy the sport. He said that not the gold medal is what makes it all worth it. It is not the award that gives meaning to the sport. Dan seemed like he couldn't understand it.

So, Socrate decided to take Dan for a walk in the mountain. They walked for three hours till they reached the top. During the journey Dan was really excited, he was eager to find out what was on the top. When they reached their final destination there was nothing there but a little stone. Dan was disappointed. He couldn't believe he walked so much just to find a stone!

Socrate looked at him, laughed and said " I never know what I am gonna find at the top. You looked like a child before Christmas, while we were walking and now where did all that joy go?"That was the moment when Dan actually understood the meaning behind it. It is not the final destination that makes it all worth. It is the journey itself! The journey with all the failours and the success. The pain and the joy. The expectation and disappointment. The moments of pride and shame. That is what makes the destination interesting and exciting. That is what gives meaning even to the worthless.

During your life, you shouldn't focus only on the last step- the final destination you are headed. What is more important is NOW. It is the journey. It is what you do, how you act and what you overcome on your way there! The movie ends with the words :

Where are you?
What time is it?
Who are you?
This moment!

Make sure you live in the present. Make sure you enjoy the moment right now! Focus on every detail in the present, in what you do at the moment. Do not think about what is going to happen next. How other people will react to your actions...rather live the moment! Fell it and enjoy it!

Here are some nice videos related to the movie:

Saturday, July 16, 2011

There's beauty behind the darkness

“People don't do things for you or against you, they do things for themselves - it's fortune, good or bad, to be in the way”

Do you ever take a walk at night? Do you ever look up...see the sky...the clouds...and the moon..? Ever noticed the clouds passing infront of the moon? Looks like the sky is dark and there is nothing to brigthen it...nothing to light your path and lead you forward...and then after a while if you are patient enough to watch...the clouds move away...and there it is the moon-brightening the sky...and everything around, bringing the light and the hope back...ever noticed how just because you do not see something now, doesn't mean it is not there...doesn't mean that its existance is a mirage...In life sometimes there is beauty behind the darkness. It is a mastery to know there is beauty somewhere, when you can't see it with your eyes...it takes faith to believe it...takes love to endure it...
Sometimes when you are drained in your saddness...when it seems like darkness takes over...it strikes you...the moments of happiness...those we enjoy...the once that take us by surprise. It is not that we seize them, but that they seize us.

I had a birthday yesterday...just because it is your birthday it doesn't mean that the world stops for you...doesn't mean that it will be perfect...doesn't man that the pain will be absent...but when you have wonderful people in your life...it happens! They help you get up, take the dust off and enjoy the moment...help you find the strength to be thankful...for the good and the bad...for their presence...and their helping hand!

With my dad and my twin sister(we decided that if we both turn 22, we could just add up the candles.:)

Love pork stakes :)

That is wat a CAKE should look like...only fruits :)

Always happy when I am around food;)

Some of the presents and part of the surprises by my wonderful frinds!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Effort pays off

“I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances.Be more active. Show up more often.”
-Brian Tracy

Yesterday was another great workout. There were a some new people, that did really good, and showed some motivation and hard work! The "veterans" did great. It is really fullfilling to see how people get better, when they put the efforts needed.

The workout was:
On the speed ladder- straight, in and out (about 20metres)
20m walking lunges
20 swings
20metres tire flip
20 sledgehammer hits
20metres burpee+ long jump