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


REST! It Does A Body Good

Have you ever wondered what rest and recovery have to do with your fitness and wellness journey? How on earth can the time that you’re not working out be as important as the workout itself?

Well, rest assured, it’s more than just not doing physical work, you are actually becoming stronger! 

Although you aren’t doing physical work during that period, your body is repairing itself and getting ready for the next time you exercise. The repair process is the strengthening process.

It helps to know a little bit about that fantastic system our body has called the Muscular System. There are 3 types of muscle in the body. Cardiac (heart); Smooth (walls of internal organs); and Skeletal, which are the muscles that move the body, arms and legs. This last is the one we’ll be discussing.

When you lift weights, your muscles contract. The muscles can both shorten and lengthen. So when you are doing your sets of pushups, squats, etc., your muscles are working to meet the demands you are placing on them. You’re depleting your glycogen stores (muscle energy) and the muscles become fatigued. The muscle, while you’re lifting weights, is getting small tears.  These tears simulate the body’s repair response.

The recovery process (repair response) starts when you are done working out. Your glycogen stores get replaced and the tears are repaired. Time is necessary for the repair process as your body is rebuilding the muscle STRONGER than it was previously. Rest is essential to these improvements.

So what happens if I don’t rest?

Best case scenario is that your performance decreases. Have you ever had the experience of working out a ton, and just not getting anywhere?  A lack of rest could be the cause. You’ll also feel more fatigued when working out. The exercise will be, and feel, more difficult. Worst case is that you will get injured. If the body doesn’t have time to repair, then the tears just get worse and worse.

This is the reason that Booty Camp is set up to have you work out different muscle groups on each day; to give the muscles time to rest. Break Weeks are a great time to rest (and get stronger) as well.

So enjoy your time off, and know that it’s making you stronger and healthier!!

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

Special Events

Booty Babes Snowshoe Expedition 2013

Booty Camp Founder Jessica Breznau and Trainer Melissa Madgsick lead a group of intrepid booty campers on a gorgeous showshoe up to Source Lake Basin.  It was a brilliant day!  About half the group braved their first snowshoe and several joined us again that came last year.  Check out the slideshow below.  Highlights:  A discussion about whether or not wine should be allowed on our first ever Booty Camp Restorative Retreat this May ; )  Also Melissa brought along the star of the parade – baby Grace and also her hubby Greg of Freggies – one of our co sponsors!


The Moves

Ain’t Pretty but yeah let’s Hold Pee, Hold Gas!

2 secrets!

1. What will power charge your core workout? 

2. Why does it have a Code Name: H.P.H.G.?

Well my friends, the secret lies between your legs ;).

A few posts ago we were talking about kegels and why they are so good for us for so many reasons!  Well now, we are expanding on the kegel and bringing it smack dab into the middle of your workout!  As we covered in our previous post the Kegel exercises (tightening and releasing the muscles you use to stop your flow of pee) are miracle workers when it comes to prevention and treatment of many common health issues such as urinary incontinence that happens as we age.  Read more on Kegels here.

Your pelvic floor musculature could be described as a hammock of interwoven muscles made up of sphincter and sling muscles.

Theresa Freeman, one of our powerhouse Seward Park Booty Camp Trainer teaches her campers about these muscles incorporates them into most core exercises.  Theresa explains that when we don’t activate our pelvic floor muscles we let our bigger muscles take over which in the long run reduces our core strength and ability to support our spine.

And the code name?

As a quick and easy reminder Theresa started calling these muscles “Hold Pee, Hold Gas” to remind campers of the full pelvic floor sensation of the muscles we want to engage.  Some campers didn’t like this name and instead started calling it H.P.H.G.  And this name stuck!  There you have the birth of our code name.

So next time you are doing any core exercise like a “chair” sit, try to H.P.H.G. and see how much more stamina and stability you build with this new secret weapon!

Community News, Special Events

5th Anniversary Holiday Party!


Southside Booty Camp celebrated our 5th Anniversary in style this holiday season!

Thanks so much to all who attended and made it special.  Highlights were the mid dance party plank contest.  Camper Kathleen Skeels (the champion) and Laura Shoemaker each won a week of camp each, with both coming in at over 7 minutes 30 seconds!  So you all can expect some longer plank holds during camp now!  The table was set with amazing food from so many excellent kitchens.  Randi Rascal gave us the sweetest burlesque act which involved clothes being shed in the effort of trying to fit into a box… And Camper Xena Harris performed and showed us how to get our Bollywood on as we all took the dance floor.  We celebrated 5 years of sweating together and plan on many more to come.  Extra special was Jessica getting to present “I’m a Booty Babe’ onsies to FIVE campers who will all give birth to new booty babes early this year!  Congrats all around!

Many thanks to Cheri Pearl Photography, Waid’s Haitian Lounge, Mean Girls Massage, Dahlia Spa, Freggies, and Communichi Acupunture.

Community News, Partners

Birth Days of all Shapes and Sizes

Today is a BIRTH DAY.  No it’s not our fearless leader Jessica’s Birthday (although stay tuned for the upcoming Booty Camp 5th year anniversary party!).  Today we are honoring Booty Camp Sponsor and Camper Marge Mansfield and her organization Seattle Home Maternity Service and Childbirth Center.

Located in Columbia City, this is the oldest practice and birth center in the state.  Marge is one of the founders!

Some of you may know Marge as your fellow camper in Stephanie’s 6:15 class.  When she’s not doing her reps with you at camp she is working with women all around Seattle since the late 1970’s to have satisfying and empowering births.

“Brilliant” is what Marge calls Southside Booty Camp’s outdoors exercise experience.  She makes connection between her work and SSBC through empowerment, education and community building.  Marge appreciates how SSBC gives women tools you can use anywhere for their own personal fitness.

“Midwifery care is a different kind of care…it’s client driven” she says.  Marge wants everyone to know the breadth of options available to pregnant women.  For example, did you know?

– Most Midwives offer a free consultation

– With a Midwife you can give birth at home, in a birth center, or in a hospital

– Midwives are covered by essentially all health insurance plans, including Group Health and state Medicaid

Marge reminds us that Seattle is an incredible place for options:  “you deserve to have a care provider who is responsive to your needs and concerns.”  She advises – not to accept a care provider who doesn’t know or can’t tell you:

– her/his c-section rate

– time you can expect her/him at your bedside,

– If she/he is open to having a doula present

What to do if that happens?  Marge says “It’s never too late to change providers.  If you’re not comfortable, fire them!  Look for someone who’s right for you.”

For new parents she stresses a healthy recovery and adjustment time, validating self-care; trust yourself and your ideas of your body’s capacity, “come home to that trust” she reminds pregnant women and new moms.

Want more information for you or a friend? Check-out these resources:

Contributed by Camper Becka Tilsen

The Moves


Here are 4 workout ideas for break week or for when you are on vacation and want to take us with you!

With all the workouts start with a 5-10 minute brisk walk or jog to get your body warmed up and ready to go.
Then mobilize your joints with some dynamic (moving) stretching like we do in class.
When you begin the  workout remember to belly breath as much as possible, and strive for maintaining good form over
completing the right number of repetitions or time, and stay hydrated.  When you are finished the main work set
take 5 minutes or so to stretch out the muscle groups that you have worked.  Have fun ~ even try putting a smile on your face when
it starts to feel hard, and whenever possible get a buddy to join you, that always makes it more fun.

There is a core workout, a lower and upper body workout. You can always take a piece of each of those
workouts and combine them together for a more full body session.


You will need a watch for this one, or if you are doing it inside a wall clock with a second hand works well.
using a 30-45 second interval with 10- 15 seconds to rest/transition to the next exercise.

Round 1.
Forearm plank hold – press through your whole forearm, and draw your shoulder blades down your back
Side plank hold –   lift  your top hip up, and try to keep your your body in one long line
Bridge  –  engage your core before you lift up, and press through your heels to make sure you are using your glut muscles
Superman –   keeping your core engaged, lift your legs and arms up and down for a count of 5.

In between rounds 1 and 2 and  then 2 and 3 take a run and or do 1-2 minutes of the cardio move of you choice
(jacks, mountain climbers, skipping etc)

Round 2 – same exercises or if you want to increase the challenge add the following modifications
Plank- try body saws, hinging you body forward and back
Side Plank – lift your hips up and down
Bridge – lift your body up and down, with spine straight (no curling)
Superman – lengthen your lift to a 10 second hold

Round 3 – continue where you are or modify further
Plank – while holding plank, alternate lifting you legs out to the side
Side plank – lift top arm and leg up . Now try going up and down…!
Bridge – hold bridge and march your legs by extending your lower leg out till it is level with your thigh
Sea turtles – as you lift up through your spine, sweep your arms back by your sides and spread your legs out to the sides


Tabata is a pretty quick way to fit in a workout and get your metabolism fired up for the rest of the day.
You will need a watch or a wall clock for this one, using the 20 ‘on’ and 10 seconds rest timing for a total of 4 minutes.
if you have any physical restrictions feel free to substitute another cardio exercise of your choice
Between rounds take 2 minutes of rest (or more if you need it) and drink some water

Round 1
Jacks ( plyo jacks will increase the intensity)
butt kicks (jog in place but kick your heels up high behind you.

round 2
Mountain climbers
jump squats or quick pulse squats

Round 3
Skipping (if you don’t have a jump rope pretend..!)
Punches  stay active on your feet as you punch out in front about shoulder or eye level.


This is a ascending/descending ladder. Do each of the exercises below 5X, then 10X then 15X, then 10X,  then 5X
in between rounds bring your heart rate up with 30 jacks, mountain climbers or punches or if you prefer take a 200 meter run.

DIPS (use a chair if you are doing this inside, or a bench outside)
LUNGES WITH BICEP CURL (step back into lunge, then bring same leg forward so that your knee is raised as you do a bicep curl)
LEG LOWERS (laying on your back with your legs raised, and knees bent with your feet up in the air, engage your core muscles, maintaining
your neutral lumbar curve, and slowly lower your heels to the ground.  This can be done with straight legs, but make sure you are not flattening you spine
into your mat)


Make sure you warm your legs up well for this one with some jacks, squats and around the world lunges (right leg lunges forward, to the side, back, then left leg lunges back, to the side and then forward) and get your core engaged by doing some balance work on each leg.

Standing with your legs hip width apart, wrap your band around your knees or ankles (the lower the more challenging).
Bend your knees and take 10 steps to the right, keeping your upper body steady over your pelvis as you walk.
10 squats  pressing your knees out into the resistance of the band to feel the engagement of you hip muscles.
keep your knees bent and take 10 steps back to the left.
Repeat this sequence 3x resting if you need to in between sets, take a jog after 3 rounds or do 2-3 minutes of cardio moves of your choice.

Alternate between sets 2 and 3 3x, resting as needed between rounds

10 lunges per leg.  For extra challenge add arm weights with a bicep curl or fly as you lunge.
jog backwards to where you started, 10 push ups (or burpies if you are looking for extra challenge!)

15 jump squats (regular, low squats are fine if you don’t jump)
15 bodyweight squats   (pulse in the lower range of the squat if you did regular squats the first time
Low squat hold   30 seconds, keep chest lifted and try not to put your hands on your thighs


This is a great way to break into running more if you typically walk or gain speed if you already a runner.

1.Alternate between 2 minutes of  brisk walking or easy running and 1 minute of jogging or moderate intensity running
(Repeat 5 times)

2.Alternate 30 seconds of walking or jogging with 30 seconds of jogging or high intensity running.
(repeat 3 -5 times)

Repeat 2 minute/1 minute interval 3- 5 times finishing with an easy effort to bring your heart rate back down.

-Contributed by Trainer Stephanie Levine

Special Events

End of Season 5k/10k and Harvest Picnic!

An abundance from the earth was shared at our Harvest Picnic.. many mother – daughter teams ran and walked the trails together… and it was simply an altogether lovely September day to share fitness, camaraderie, fun and food!

Thanks to our awesome sponsors and camper crafters… our campers went home with drawing prizes that included fresh produce boxes from FREGGIES, Mean Girls Massage, Communichi Acupunture, and Camper Tina Fogall’s Big Spoon Jam! xoxoxoxoxo

The Moves

Getting To the Core

What’s At the Core?

Moving from a strong CORE could be the most important element in your approach to movement and exercise.  A strong core allows you to move through life with control because the muscles in your abdomen, lower back, pelvis, and hips are all strong enough to work together in concert toward balance and stability.

A targeted core exercise is any exercise that asks your abdominal muscles and your back muscles to synchronize.  HOWEVER, bringing an engaged core to almost every exercise will extend the exercise to building the core and use the core to make sure that the correct muscles are doing the work they should be doing.

You may notice that if you’ve spent some time focusing on engaging your core in your workout that you move from your core more in your every day activities like standing up, sitting down, carrying groceries, and even sitting at a desk.  This is terrific!  We want our workout to add more physical strength to our everyday life and we want our movements in everyday life to reinforce our strengthening.

For Active Imaginations:

Imagine for a moment that you are laying on your back and you are about to do a bicep curl with a weight that is a bit heavy for you.   Imagine first that you are going to do this curl with a core as relaxed as jelly…

If your imagination is active you might notice that tiny back muscles in your upper and mid-back might jump up to help do the job but that these same muscles might become injured in the process.

Now imagine that you are about to curl with the same weight but this time you first engage all your core muscles.  Now as you do your bicep curl you may notice that you feel your core supporting all the muscles in your arm.  That’s what we want!

Assignment for the week:

See if you can engage your core in EVERY single exercise you do and then see if you can engage your core when you are doing daily tasks including sitting at a desk or table.  Building your core is less about crunches and more about bringing a level of awareness and engagements to all of your movements and exercises.

– Becka Tilsen, Booty Blogger, Camper and Coaching Consultant Extraordinaire