How To Strength Train After A Mastectomy

It had been about six months since my breast reconstruction surgery and bilateral prophylactic mastectomy. I was at the gym, following an old training program I wrote. Back to training for months, I’d mostly avoided chest training until recently. I glanced down to see which exercise was up next: Push-ups. I felt a little flutter in my stomach and made a spur-of-the-moment decision: I would try push-ups this time instead of skipping them. Since it would suck to lower myself down and choke at the {Read More…}

5 Tips for Returning to Strength Training After a Mastectomy

If you’re a woman who lifts weights and find yourself faced with having a mastectomy, you’ll have a lot of research and reading to do. So for Breast Cancer Awareness month, I wanted to share the top five things I wish I’d known as a woman who strength trains and has had a prophylactic double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery in March and May of 2015, respectively. When considering these surgeries, of course I was not happy about the prospect of losing muscle and enduring a {Read More…}

How To Increase Your Push-ups

Push-ups help sculpt your shoulders, pecs, and arms. Doing push-ups on your toes also builds incredible full-body strength that carries over into other lifts, injury prevention, and rocking other activities. A more subtle benefit of achieving that level of strength is confidence and pride. You achieved a difficult goal that required consistency and tenacity.  Push-ups primarily use your pectorals, triceps, and anterior and medial deltoids to push your upper body up from the floor. However, your entire body is engaged, including your core, rhomboids, quads, and glutes. So push-ups are {Read More…}

My Routines for Building Lower Body and Chest

Many of you are looking for new weights routines and ask what I do. To focus on the great results I’ve seen in the last few months, I wanted to share a few of the routines I’ve been doing. I change my reps, sets, weight, and exercise order frequently and change my exercises every two months. I find this keeps my muscles challenged and boredom at bay. I love starting new routines! I’ll be creating new ones in the next {Read More…}

Don’t Ignore your Chest: A Plan for Strong Pectorals

If you’re not challenging your chest muscles, have you asked yourself why? Are you bored with bench presses or frustrated with your results? Do you think a muscular chest is only for men or are you afraid you’ll get too big? I’ve been focusing on my chest more over the last few months, and although I have more work to do, I’m seeing some nice results. The muscles in front of my underarms are firm instead of floppy. I can {Read More…}

Using Power Racks and Spotters

Sometimes you’re trying to push yourself in the gym but you just can’t get past a certain weight. It’s either tough to get into position with the heavier weight or you can’t get past a certain point in a rep. If I found myself in this position in the past, I would just keep lifting the same amount of weight and think I was somehow getting stronger, or try to lift more in very small increments. All I was doing {Read More…}