Matilda Choc cake

Don’t Take A Pregnant Woman’s Chocolate!

Read Time: 2:15
Words: 498
Look, don’t be fooled by the title, this is about a lapse in judgement for me and how sugar ruined my day.
The Sunday after Valentine’s Day I was home with the family having what seemed to be a perfectly normal Sunday afternoon. My wife made us a healthy lunch and less than an hour later I walked into the kitchen to relieve her from our crying one and two year olds who were [like usual] tugging on her leg, and without thinking twice, I snatched a mini Reeses off of the table. I unwrapped it, popped it in my mouth, and started chomping. I turned to my wife, rolled my eyes and said “wow, these taste better than I remember”.
Then…it got bad. The last thing my 8 months pregnant wife wanted was for me to keep eating her chocolate, but I went rogue from my normal eating habits and crushed another 4-6 of them, plus some jelly beans from my oldest daughter’s Valentine’s bag. The whole time I was thinking – it’s cool, I’ve been on a good routine, I deserve it.
Well, what happened next was what I often forget when I gorge on something I shouldn’t – PUKE EVERYWHERE!
Just kidding, I’m no pansy, I can take some chocolate to the head just fine.
No, in all reality, what happened was worse than just polishing off my wife’s candy, I had a sugar crash like you wouldn’t believe. I sat on the couch, had no motivation to help with the girls, no motivation to assist Johnna with cleaning (not like i normally do, but this was worse than normal) and I lethargically made up an excuse why I couldn’t play Barbies with my oldest daughter, Lola. Although, I don’t think the Barbie playing denial was all sugar talking, a grown man can only put in so much Barbie time 🙂
That night we were sitting at dinner and Johnna asked me what was wrong with me, I told her I thought it was the sugar. I wish I could say after that it was a happy ending and I perked back up, but I just couldn’t get past the sugar crash and so I ended the night ignoring everyone and going upstairs to be unsocial and do what I wanted.
The reason I want to share this with you all is because I had forgotten the actual hormonal effects that sugar has on my body and my lack of a desire to hang with my girls because of it was disturbing.
If I sound crazy and extreme here because sugar is a pretty normal part of your routine, it’s because you cannot yet differentiate it to see the huge impact it’s making on your mind and body. I have been doing pretty well lately with clean eating and exercise, so this one relapse slapped me in the face.
If you’ve ever noticed sugar have this effect on you, how did you combat it?
Join the conversation.

What Do Crunches Do For My Stomach?


Read Time: 2:25

Words: 570

What Do Crunches Do For My Stomach?

Ahh Crunches..

Recently I was finishing up one of my private training clients workouts with a challenging abdominal crunch routine.

Upon completion of the set, I turned to her and asked her if she knew why we did ab exercises? She looked at me with a puzzled expression and said, “Well, I guess to flatten my stomach, right?”

Now I am fully aware that she is not alone in this thought process and you may have had the same hopes yourself? You know, crunching until your abs feel like they are going to explode with the only thought in your mind being that it’s going to be worth it, the fat is literally melting right off, just keep pushing!

Well, I hate to burst that bubble of intrinsic motivation butttt…. That set you did, that burning you felt, it wasn’t melting the fat off, as a matter of fact, it wasn’t doing much at all for the actual circumference of your gut.

WHAT!? (I know, now you’re thinking your whole life is a lie, stay with me)

That’s right, it is my firm belief that abdominal crunches in no way, shape, or form flatten your stomach. They serve one purpose, and one purpose only.

Are you ready?

Don’t get too pumped.

The answer is …

To inspire stabilization of your spine…I know, BUZZ KILL, right!?

Before you check out and think I’m nerding out on you, stick around if you want to be able to pick up your kid or pet without pain.

Wait, what?

Just keep reading.

Fun fact: Did you know that if you were to eliminate all of your muscles surrounding the spine, your spine would collapse with under 25 lbs of pressure?

Let me put that into perspective, this means if you have kids or even a small pet, you wouldn’t be able to pick them up off the ground without massive injury.

Yikes, that sounds like an outrageous hospital bill am I right?

Keep reading to avoid the bill (or death).

Allow me to give you some insight on why this is far more important than you may think.

Consider this, every compound movement we make requires spinal stability and a strong core musculature. Well lucky for you, this abdominal work you have been doing does just that.

It strengthens the muscles surrounding your spine to increase overall strength of your core musculature and improve many other facets of your core.

Good news is, with a little ab work it is now safe to pick up the pet or the kid. (whew, dodged a bullet there).

This ab work not only stabilizes the spine, but in turn improves the efficiency of your movement and makes you stronger when attempting more popular strength movements such as Pushes, Pulls, Squats, Deadlifts and even Running!

Simply put, I believe that the most important function of the core musculature is stability.  Whether you squat, deadlift, push, pull, hinge, twist, or run- the most important thing within those movements is how stable your spine and stabilizers are.

So, while the reasoning for your crunches aren’t as physically sexy anymore, for your kids’ sake, for your pets’ sake, and for your movements’ sake – drop to the floor, ignore the haters and crank out your favorite pain-free ab exercise!

What are some of your favorite abdominal exercises?

Join the conversation!