Front Page, The Moves

My Hip Pain Doesn’t Lie

PhotoFunia Quadriptych Regular 2015-01-30 08 59 51Our hips are the base for most of our body’s movement. They are the powerhouse that offers stability for the core and they are the foundation behind locomotion. They propel us in walking and moving up stairs. They are the structure that gives us strength behind a squat, in kneeling, or in lifting heavy object. The hips and lower back are connected though the pelvis. Your hip muscles attach to the pelvis from below (i.e. psoas major, iliacus, quadriceps femoris group, and the addudctors) and the lower back muscles (erector spinae and quadratus lumborum muscles) attach to the pelvis from above.

When we have restricted mobility in our hips, the body compensates and begins to recruit low back muscles to do the work your legs should be doing. A restricted range of motion in the hips creates instability in the low back, oftentimes resulting in low back pain and injury. Why? The low back (lumbar spine) is designed for slight movements—it is not designed to bear loads to compensate for the hips. The body will find the path of least resistance—this is oftentimes where low back pain begins.

Our modern day sedentary lifestyle exacerbates hip immobility. Most Americans sit for over 9 hours per day. Americans, on average, sleep less than 8 hours a day! It is shocking that we sit more than we sleep. Our bodies were meant to move. To walk. To be active. Movement is vital for the health of our hips because the act of movement regenerates fresh cartilage, activates synovial fluid, and maintains range of motion. Sitting most of the day stiffens the hips and can make them weaker from prolonged rest. In order to maintain a healthy hip joint, the ball and socket joint needs to be exercised within all ranges of motion. Walking is the simplest and easiest way to pump nutrients into the hip joints but does not capture the ball and socket’s full range of motion.

At Southside Booty Camp, we incorporate a number of joint rotations and stretches every day that aim to address hip mobility and prepare us for success as we exercise together each morning. However, there are several of these movements you can incorporate in your day-to-day routine to help improve hip mobility gradually. Rather than overwhelm you with stretches and joint rotations, we offer 4 exercises to incorporate into your daily routine. Perform each joint rotation/stretch for 30 seconds on each leg. Give yourself 4 minutes of self-love a day and feel the difference in your hips!

  • Front to Back Leg Swings: Keeping your legs straight, swing leg forward and back. The leg should be nice a loose in the hip socket. (20 swings per leg)
  • Side to Side Leg Swings: Similarly, keeping your leg straight, swing leg side to side across the front of the body. (20 swings per leg)
  • Fire Hydrant Hip Circles: Get into table top position. Pick up one leg. Make big circles in the air with the leg. Do 10 circles to the front and 10 circles to the back for both legs.
  • Figure 4 Hip Stretch (or variation): Lay on your back. Plant your feet. Cross one ankle at the knee. Slowly draw your knee in toward your chest. Use your arms to assist the stretch. Hold for 30 seconds. Switch to the other leg.

-Contributed by Trainer Gina

Front Page, Motivation, Nutrition

Mindful Eating in a Mindless World

It’s so easy to be distracted. We’ve all got a lot on our plates (so to speak) at any given time. It’s often especially so with eating. We eat in the car, we eat while playing with our phones or tablets, we eat while reading a book or magazine.

To help with what mindful eating is, it may be helpful to give some examples of mindless eating (or, what mindful eating isn’t). Do any of these habits sound familiar?

  • Eating until you are too full and then feeling guilty.
  • Emotional eating – eating when you are bored, stressed or anxious rather than physically hungry.
  • Grazing on food without really tasting it.
  • Mindlessly munching on snacks while zoned out in front of the TV.
  • Eating a meal at the same time each day whether you are hungry or not.
  • Skipping meals; not paying attention to your hunger signals.

The beauty of mindful eating (besides getting us back in touch with our natural selves), is that it is NOT a diet. It isn’t a fad. It costs you no money. There are no pills, pre-packaged food or giving up of entire food groups. You won’t starve or restrict. It helps you manage your weight, if that is a concern for you.

Mindful eating will allow you to enjoy your food. Every bite takes on a different sensation. You will be aware of your meal. You will be satisfied.

Geneen Roth, in her book Women, Food, and God, offers the following guidelines for kickstarting eating mindfully:

  • Eat when you are hungry.
  • Eat sitting down in a calm environment. This does not include the car.
  • Eat without distractions. Distractions include radio, television, newspapers, books, intense or anxiety-producing conversations or music.
  • Eat what your body wants.
  • Eat until you are satisfied.
  • Eat (with the intention of being) in full view of others.
  • Eat with enjoyment, gusto and pleasure.

Give it a try.. let’s see what happens!

-Contributed by Trainer Michelle


Front Page, The Moves

Total Body Break Week Workout

Don’t let travel and holiday time plans get in the way of your fitness goals.  Looking for a routine you can do anywhere/anytime? This break week workout requires no dumbbells or bands…just your own body! The circuit is a mix of body weight and cardio exercises.

Perform the circuit 2-3x’s depending on how much time you have available. Make sure you warm up for 5-10 minutes before the workout and give yourself some time for stretching at the end.  You deserve it.  Then go enjoy your holiday and send us pics!

Break Week Workout:

Warm Up

5-10 minutes of warm up consisting of: joint rotations, light jog around the block, cardio warmups like jumping jacks, high knees/breaking sticks, etc.


  1. Football Fast Feet: Get down into a low, wide squat; run in place with fast feet. Pump arms vigorously. (50 steps total)
  2. Stutter squat:  Slowly move down into a squat position for the count of three/slowly return to standing in a three count (30 total)
  3. Plank Leg Raises: Hold a plank (elbow or on hands). Lift one heel up in the air and return to the ground in a slow and controlled manner. Alternate legs.  (15 each leg/30 total)
  4. Marching Bridge with kick (30 leg kicks total)
  5. Tricep Pushups or Dips (15)
  6. Bicycles (30 total)
  7. Side plank hip dips:  Hold an elbow side plank; dip hip toward ground and return to side plank position (15 dips on each side)
  8. Jumping Lunges (30 total) (or step back into alternating reverse lunges for low impact option)
  9. Spider Crawls: Hold a plank; draw R knee toward R elbow. Return to start.  Draw L knee toward L elbow.   Repeat. (30 total- 15 each leg)
  10. Speed Skaters (30 total)

-Contributed by Trainer Gina

Front Page, Motivation, The Moves

Getting Started with Running

“As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles is sure to have trouble.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

What’s the best way to train to run a race? Any race, be it your first 5k, or your 8th marathon?

The answer is simple; you have to run. Yes, it’s that simple. The principle of running is that you run to run. But how far? And how often? And what do I eat? And what shoes are the best? What about speed work? And hill training?

Congrats to the Booty Babes who did their first ever 5k at the Shore Run last weekend!

What follows is a very basic outline of how to get started and get the most out of your training experience.  (Please note – we will be offering a 5k to Half Marathon Training Series starting March 28 and ending on June 13, 2015 at the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon … another goal setting opportunity perhaps?!! xo)

  1. Your Attitude

“I hate this.” “Running sucks.” “I’m not a runner.” Do any of these sound familiar? Have any of these thoughts bounced around in your mind? Don’t worry, everyone has these thoughts; even Olympic marathon medalists. But you can change that message.

“I love this!” “I’m getting stronger with every step.” “Running is keeping me healthy.” “ I AM a runner!.”

No one but you can lace up your running shoes and get out there. You don’t need to win races, or even beat anyone in a race to be a “runner.” If you run, you’re a runner! End of story.

      2.    Your Running Schedule

Ah, here’s the rub. Basically, to have a successful race, you need to train. Build a base. It’s the foundation on which you can then increase distance and speed. That means lacing up those shoes and going out for a run. The bonus here is, that as a Booty Camper, you’re already doing that, at least 4 times a week! You need to have an aerobic base to run any given distance successfully. That means putting in some miles. Slow, easy runs.  How far depends on what you’re training for, as does how often. But a good rule of thumb is to try to run at least 3-4 days a week.

Hill workouts are only needed AFTER you’ve built your base. Same with speed, or track, workouts.

      3.    Your Shoes

Wear good running shoes. Your body will thank you, and you’re less likely to get hurt. Yes, they can be expensive, but if you really want to be successful, good shoes are key. Each person has different feet, be it high or low arches, pronation or supination, and so on. Go to a local running store and try on different shoes to find the ones that are perfect for you. They are experts in what they do, and will allow you to actually run in the shoe and will watch your gait to see what is best for you. I’ve had success with these stores in particular:

Super Jock n Jill

Everyone for everyone and everyone for themselves… the journey and uplift of having and completing a “race” goal.

Balanced Athlete

Fleet Feet

West Seattle Runner

The owners of these stores are local runners themselves.

      4.    Your Clothes

Be comfortable, above all. Cotton is not your friend, as when it gets wet (as it will when you sweat) it clings and can lead to chafing. The running stores have good gear, but you can generally wear the same thing you wear to booty camp. Stick with tech or wool.  Layer when needed, and remember that as you stand there being cold, you’ll warm up very quickly when you start to run.


      5.    Your Recovery

Listen to your body! If you are just starting out, you may need more rest. If there’s a certain body part (usually knees or feet) that is starting to nag at you, stop then to assess it. If you try to “run through it” or “tough it out”, you’ll probably get injured. Talk to your trainer at that point. Sleep is key, as is stretching, and when needed, a foam roller.  Epsom salt baths relax the muscles before sleep, as well as a magnesium/calcium vitamin before bed.  Also, hint hint: Join us for Yoga Fridays here!

     6.    Your Nutrition

You need fuel to run. We could spend days covering this topic alone, but suffice it to say that the fuel should come in the form of carbs (burn quickest) and a little protein. Protein is more for after you run, for helping to build muscle tissue. Staying hydrated is also key, so make sure to drink your water.

     7.    Your Race Day

The main event! Have your clothes laid out the night before, with your race number pre-attached if at all possible. Whatever you’ve been doing in terms of nutrition and clothing during training, stick with this on race day. Never wear new shoes or clothes on race day! That is, clothes or shoes you’ve not worn before this day. That just opens the door to chafing, blisters and a generally bad time.

This is a VERY brief synopsis to get you started. So let’s hit the road!

-Contributed by Trainer Michelle

Front Page, Special Events

50 women rocked the Self Defense Class!

Thanks so much to the Fight the Fear Campaign that brought 8 trainers for 50 women and young daughters this morning at Lakewood Seward Park Community Club.  This was a fantastic workshop.. don’t worry if you missed it.. we are planning on another one in January!