Category Archives: Strength Training

Pin It Party!

Hey guys!

Welcome to my new look! What do you think? I kind of love it. I’ve been wanting to change things up around here forever. I had no idea what I really wanted except clean and simple. I think I got that! A huge THANK YOU to Tasha from My Cute Lobster for doing a fantastic, speedy job. If you need a graphic designer, contact Tasha. She’s quick, efficient and very well priced.

So today it’s another edition of the Pin It Party! Are you following me on Pinterest? If not, click HERE!

A big thanks to Lindsay for hosting again.

If you’ve never attended before, here’s the details.   The purpose of a Pin It Party is for bloggers to gain Pinterest exposure to some of their best posts and to help drive traffic to their blogs.

If you’re a reader, remember that pinning images from blog posts you love is a great way to support your favorite bloggers! It helps more people see the posts and can help the blogs grow. So check out some of the great posts that are linked up at Lindsay’s and pin away!

Here’s what I’m bringing to the party. You can click on the picture to take you to the post OR use the handy dandy Pin It button that appears in the upper left corner as you hover over the picture with your mouse.

Let’s workout first before we eat!

Hip Strengthening Exercises for Runners - happyfitmama.com6 Hip Strengthening Exercises for Runners (or really anyone)

These exercises have been in my 3x/week rotation ever since I started physical therapy last summer. They are simple but do the job. Do them and you’ll be able to tell the difference in your running in no time.

Core Strong - happyfitmama.comCore Strength for Runners

More of my standard core exercises for fixing my foot injury and my weak hip.

Pumpkin Chia Granola Bars - happyfitmama.comPumpkin Chia Granola Bars

These bars just kind of randomly happened. Like most of my recipes do!

Butternut Squash Cranberry Oat Bread 1 - happyfitmama.comButternut Squash Cranberry Oat Bread

This bread is the epitome of Fall! So flavorful with no refined sugar and a dose of a veggie hidden in the mix.

You can't finish unitl you start - happyfitmama.com20 Life Lessons Running Has Taught Me

Running is so much more than exercise to me. The lessons learned on the road, trail, track and treadmill apply to everyday living. I’m forever applying these lessons in my day to day tasks.

So start pinning away! If you are on Pinterest, leave your URL in the comments and I’ll follow you back. I’m always looking for yummy food to make, new workouts and new inspiration.

In case you missed the other Pin It Party’s:

Pin It Party

Pin It Party II

Happy Pinning!

Hips Don’t Lie

Hey friends!

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend! Ours was good and quiet with lots of outside time – just the way I like it! And of course a little backyard yoga, too. What? Doesn’t everyone pop out Wheel Pose next to a slide?

Wheel pose -

On Friday I mentioned that I finally got started with physical therapy on my foot. In reality, even though my foot has been the pain, it all stems from my hips. More specifically my weak right hip. I’ve been doing my exercises like it’s my job, determined to get stronger and back in my running shoes ASAP. I’m linking up today with Katie for Marvelous in My Monday since I’m feeling so optimistic about my return.

You may be wondering how having a weak hip can cause foot pain? The hip muscles are what control the whole movement of the leg whether it be in running, walking, cycling, etc. It throws off your gait/biomechanics of a running stride. Weak hips can cause pain such as IT Band syndrome, Patellofemoral Syndrome and Achilles tendinitis.

Game Ready Cold Therapy - happyfitmama.comGame Ready Cold Therapy is awesome! I want one for home.

The exercises that I’ve been given to do have been really basic. So basic that I’m kicking myself for not doing them all along. Of course, I do various versions of squats, lunges and other leg strengthening moves when I strength train. But I’ve been negligent on doing clamshells, side lying hip abduction and single leg balance moves. Given my history of patellofemoral syndrome, you would think I’d be on top of it. Interesting point however, is that my patellofemoral syndrome from last year was on my left side, not the right. Kind of weird.

In addition to my hip, my right lower abdominal is weaker. My PT had me do a very interesting test to determine this. She had me lay down on a foam roller with my head and back supported on it. Knees were bent with feet flat on the floor. Arms are crossed at your chest. Pulling your abs in tight, slowly lift one foot 1-2 inches off the ground. Hold for at least 10 seconds before switching.

Core strength test -

Sounds, easy? Not so much for me. I had difficulty even getting my right foot off the ground initially. Holding it was even more difficult. While my left side was easier, it still was quite difficult to hold.

I’ve been working on the prescribed exercises since Wednesday. I’ve been a good patient and have not run at all. I promised that I wouldn’t for at least another week. My PT seems to think I should be back to running by then. I don’t know if it’s psychological or what but I’m feeling stronger and my foot feels 100% better. It never really hurt when I wasn’t running but it would just have a different feeling than the left. That feeling is completely gone. Fingers crossed that I’m on my way!

**Everyone’s pain/injury issues are different. If you are experiencing any type of pain, I suggest you see a specialist to give you a proper diagnosis. My injury and treatment plan may be different than yours.**

Below are a few links to articles that I found interesting regarding hip strength in runners.

Runner’s World – Hip Strengthening Exercises

Runner’s Connect – How and Why You Should Strengthen Your Hip Abductors

And one for the Mamas:

New York Times Well – How Pregnancy Changes a Runner’s Body

Runner’s – Do you do hip strength exercises daily?

June 2013 in Review

OK, seriously? What just happened. How can this be the last Friday in June? Summer just seems like it’s getting started but before you know it’ll be September. Wahhhhhh! Time needs to slow down right now. I don’t like it when summer moves at warp speed.

In keeping with my monthly tradition, here are some of my favorite posts from June.

Life After 26.2 Miles

Vermont City Marathon -

In case you were wondering, there really is life after 26.2 miles. I had a really hard time dealing with a lot of emotions after VCM. Rather than jump back into running with a vengeance, I decided to let my body rest three weeks with no running. It gave me time to do other workouts and just regroup.

Except When You Don’t. Because Sometimes You Won’t.

Early morning Bay -

One of my goals for the Under Armour What’s Beautiful Challenge was to finish my my first marathon under 4 hours. Well, that didn’t happen. I had a hard time feeling proud of myself for just finishing the race. I learned that sometimes you won’t be successful. It happens to all of us.

Sweet Summer Sweat Workout

Downward Facing Dog - happyfitmama.comEven though I took three weeks off from running, I was still getting my sweat on. This Sweet Summer Sweat Workout doesn’t require any equipment and can be done anywhere. I’ve actually done it a few times in our backyard while the kids were playing. Fit it in when you can, right?

Old School Blogging

Mt Monadnock -

I love doing blogging survey’s like this! It gives me a chance to share a little more about me with all of you. Plus I can dig through old pictures and reminisce.

I Ran

Mud from #VCM -

Reunited and it feels so good! After three weeks off from running, I got back to my love. It’s not pretty and it’s not what it used to be but I’m happy to be back on my feet again.



My babies turned THREE! It’s hard to believe that they were once that small. Now they’re little people who love to have conversations about everything and anything. “Let’s talk about…” I can’t even remember what life was like before them. Well, I do remember being able to use the bathroom by myself. :)

What was a highlight in June for you?