Q and A Aug 14/12

I’ve been MIA while I’ve been unpacking and getting my house in order. It’s been super fun to set up my condo, much more fun that packing my house up (ug). With my pack, I did a lot of purging. I think I gave away one box for every two that I packed. It was a slow and tedious job. I found things in the back of cupboards that I’d never used. I made a deal with myself that if I hadn’t used it in the last year, that someone else should, out it went.

I had a ton of help unpacking. It was fun to have friends pitch in, but now if I need something, I sometimes have to text a friend: ‘where are the coffee filters?’

I’ll definitely pay it forward when I know a friend is moving. I had people just show up. It’s amazing how when someone took something small off my plate what a big difference this made for me. No job is too small to help with when there’s a million of them to do.

I’m pretty proud of myself for getting things together on my own, but what on earth would I have done without a little help from my friends? I told my daughter she was being a princess when I put her bed together and not to worry about the extra pieces left over…

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I see nothing wrong here...(thank you Carmen for a few adjustments to Hannah's bed)


Thank you to every one, and to my virtual friends too for your emails and support via the internet, it really meant a lot.


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Back to business! Here are a few of your questions:


My question is how can I do burpees without hurting my lower back? I broke it when I was 17 and I sometimes have lower back issues.



Dear Susan,

When doing burpees, make sure that you don’t let your hips drop in the plank position. To be super safe, do a burpee walk out, that is, drop to your hands and instead of jumping into the plank position with both feet, walk the feet out one at a time.

Ensure you brace your abs. You can keep the hips a little higher as well so that you don’t get into that sway back position.

Hope that helps,


Dear Shawna

I have a few difficulties on the push up exercises I need to improve that muscle area that’s for sure. I also find it a little hard on my wrists with my carpel tunnel syndrome. Any suggestions?


Dear HH
To help your wrists, do push ups and any exercise  like this with your hands on your dumb bells so you can maintain a neutral wrist. Your wrist won’t have the deep flexion and it shouldn’t irritate them as much.
A reminder that it takes a bit of time for videos to load.
Thanks for the update! Keep going.



Thanks for all the helpful advice in your emails. I do have a question. I do bootcamp or HIIT style training and in that there are a lot of exercises on toes and hands. I am wondering what I can do daily to strengthen my shoulders more as they fail prior to the core or other parts of arms I am trying to train. Appreciate any help you may have, thanks!


Hi Alice,

Thanks for your question.

This can be a problem, when one muscle group is the weak link.

It’s likely that it’s not only your shoulders that are failing, but more likely your triceps.

Here’s a great body weight tricep exercise that you can do to strengthen the triceps, shoulders and it will strengthen the core as well:


Get Up from Shawna Kaminski on Vimeo.

If you’d like more answers to your fitness questions, take a look at my program to see if it’s right for you.