What to do if you hate yoga…

Challenge workoutsQuestion: I’m looking to improve my range of motion and flexibility. Like you, I’m not a big fan of yoga. Is there any way around not having to endure a yoga session? Bill

Answer: Bill, I feel your pain as far as yoga goes. I know that yoga is one of the BEST ways to improve range of motion, flexibility and flush toxins out. I know all the benefits of it but I can’t bring myself to attend yoga or do it on my own with any regularity. So, an alternative is actually body weight training. It’s a great way to “get back in touch” with your body and develop control and awareness that you never even thought you had.

To work up to the forest bw strong prdt grppoint where you can, for example, do a pistol squat, you have to learn how to tense and control certain muscles in a different sequence than you do in a lot of exercises.  You also have to develop mobility in the ankles and hips that you may not have now.

There’s a great video on the pistol squat progression from Forest Vance on his Body Weight Strong page that you can view. It’s a great example of how you’ll work on range of motion and flexibility while getting strong at the same time.


From time to time a client will send me a cool workout that they created themselves. I think that’s fantastic! Today I have a workout from Cinthy. I asked her if she’d mind my sharing it. It most closely resembles something that you’d find in my Challenge Burpee program. It’s a good one:

  • 15 Medicine ball extensions*client cinthy
  • 10 Burpees with push ups
  • Stair hop up 14 stairs (or box jumps)
  • 15 Medicine ball extensions*
  • 10 burpees with in and out straddles
  • Stair hop up 14 stairs (or box jumps)
  • 15 Medicine ball extensions*
  • 10 burpees with squat jump 180 pivot
  • Stair hop up 14 stairs (or box jumps)
  • 15 Medicine ball extensions*
  • 10 regular burpees
  • Stair hop up 14 stairs (or box jumps)

*Medicine ball extensions are like a full body extension while holding a medicine ball (If you have no med ball, these can be done with bodyweight.)

Cinthy says: I intended to do this for 20 minutes but was able to go 30 minutes doing ~ 3 rounds!  My heart rate stayed way up.  You’ve created a monster:)

Give it a try and if you like it, check out Challenge Burpee and be a monster just like Cinthy too.

(Thanks Cinthy!)


Question: I’m so much stronger on my right side when doing things like one arm shoulder presses. Is there anything I can do to fix that? – Lisa

Answer: Lisa, Always start the set with your weaker side and then do the same amount of reps with the stronger side… even if you think you can do more. Then you can also add one more set to the weak side. You’ll always have some sort of dominate side and a weak side, but you’ll lessen the gap so that the difference isn’t as noticeable.shoulder anatomy

If you ever encounter shoulder issues, especially related to muscle imbalances, I have just the resource for you. Check out this article from my friend, Rick Kaselj. You’ll discover four strategies to avoid pain. I’ll have more for you on this next week.


Question: I’m 53 and I have lost 14 pounds so far, but I can’t seem to get rid of this belly. Is there anything I can do?

Answer: Yes, there’s LOTS you can do to help lose the belly, but I need to forewarn you…I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but this is the reality. I just can’t promise you something that I can’t deliver on.

never promise a unicorn

You will look SIGNIFICANTLY better if you’re leaner, but if you have A LOT of belly fat to lose, you MAY NOT get the smooth and sexy abs of a 20 something. But DO NOT DESPAIR.

Like I said, you’ll look BETTER, you’ll be healthier, stronger and more functional. (Yes, it’d be nice to also be able to moonlight as a swimsuit model, but who has the time for that anyways?)

So, with that caveat in mind, I’d like to remind you of  7 ways you can get ‘abs’ at ANY age. I often get asked how I manage to have abs when I’m over 50. These are my favorite tips on how YOU can get your abs to show. (Click HERE to get to that post.)

ANYONE can get their abs to become more visible, it’s a matter of proper training and nutrition. (Go here for my best advice on this.) However, please be REALISTIC. If you have a lot of belly fat, you will get leaner but the condition of your skin may be the issue. It may not firm up the way you’d like.

But, consider the alternative…would you rather have loads of belly fat, poor core strength and be unhealthy? Or would you prefer to lose the belly fat, feel strong, look MUCH better (even if it’s just in clothes) and have a little sag or extra skin when naked?

The choice seems clear to me.

Click here for the BEST way to get YOUR abs to show.


reno windows Sev and I are a bit put out.

I’m not complaining about getting new windows in my house, but it’s a little disruptive when I work from home.

The good news for Sev is that he’s getting lots of extra walks in the dog park behind our house. This is partly to reward him for his good behavior of staying by my side while men traipse in and out.

And, it appears that spring is here so it’s a really pleasant break to be outside. I do some of my best thinking when alone in my thoughts with Sev running his sillies out.

For me, this is one of the biggest benefits of being a dog owner. No matter what, I’m outside dog walking twice a day. Prior to Sev, I had five boxers (not all at once!) so I’ve logged a few miles 🙂

Do you have a time or place where you mentally re-charge?

Do tell. Even ten minutes a day of reflection and gratitude makes a big difference to me.