Sleeping Booty. Wake Your Butt Up For A Stronger Body and Life.

Do you suffer from “Gluteal Amnesia”? Here’s why it’s important to have a strong butt muscle and how to wake your butt up for a stronger body and more powerful life.

strong butt

“I like STRONG butts and I can not lie!” Having a strong, powerful, and active butt muscle does FAR more than help you look good in your jeans. It can actually improve all of your daily activities, improve performance in the sports you love, and prevent injuries. The glutes are our largest muscle group, and virtually every movement carried out by the lower body requires their activation.

But surprisingly your backside is deceptively difficult to train. For starters, many people suffer from “gluteal amnesia,” a condition in which the glute muscles act like… well, like lazy asses.  

ITS TRUE! “Gluetal Amnesia” is REAL. In today’s day and age, we have a tendency to sit a lot, stand not much, and exercise even less.  Dr. Stuart McGill explains “Gluteal Amnesia” as such: “People with troubled backs, generally walk, sit, stand and lift using mechanics that increase the back loads. They tend to have more motion in their back and less motion in their hips.  A common aberrant motor pattern known as gluteal amnesia ” Because of all of our time spent sitting combined with inadequate training (only doing ONE form of fitness or too much of one form of fitness i.e.: running, cycling, group exercise) the glutes become weak and inhibited.  This forces the hamstrings, quads, hip flexors, and lower-back muscles take over the butt’s main job of extending the hips and rotating our femurs in their sockets. This is not good for posture or moving well and this muscular imbalance can cause back, hip, or knee pain – as well as a severe case of whats known as “flat pancake butt”.

You might have heard athletes say they got hurt because their “glutes weren’t firing” or see folks in physical therapy doing hip/butt activation exercises to “wake up” the dormant butt muscle from too much sitting. In any case it’s time to recognize the importance of training the BUTT muscle and prioritize exercises that work your backside as part of your regular exercise routine. Here  are a few great reasons to work your rear and two of my “best butt exercise” videos to get you started now:

Benefits of a powerful and AWAKE butt muscle:

Powers Your Body. The glutes are known in fitness circles as your body’s engine, not only because they’re the largest muscle group in the body, but also because they’re involved in most athletic functions. The glutes produce four distinct actions: extending the hips, swinging the leg outward, rotating the leg laterally, and tilting the pelvis backward. Strong glutes increase your force and power during everything from sprinting, jumping, and squatting to climbing, swinging, and cutting from side to side. A more powerful butt will allow you to run faster, cycle stronger, and power walk up the fifth flight of stairs without losing your breath.

Protects Joints. A stronger butt can mean healthier knees, as well as a pain-free lower back and hips. The glutes pull your femur [thighbone] rearward during hip extension, which keeps the bone centered in the middle of the hip socket rather than sliding forward and causing hip pain. And strong glutes ensure that the femurs track properly over the toes when squatting, jumping, and landing. In other words, it prevents your knees from caving in toward each other, which is a major player in knee pain and injury.

Banishes Back Pain. There’s a strong body of evidence that shows high gluteus-maximus strength and endurance are correlated with a lessened risk of lower-back pain, says Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D., director of the human performance lab at Lehman College. “Increasing glute strength with resistance training in a variety of rep ranges is the best way to prevent pain.”

Reduces Fatigue. Your butt muscles are stabilizers and supporters of the rest of your body during your daily activities, as well as your athletic performance. A strong butt will give you more stamina and help reduce fatigue throughout your day as you walk, climb stairs, ride your bike and do whatever else you do physically. At the end of the day, you should feel less tired and have more energy when you have a powerful butt. 

As far as exercise selection goes, your best bet is to keep it simple and focus on form.  Make sure you are actually feeling your glutes – poke them, prod them, keep them turned on.  Start with bodyweight before progressing to loaded movements.  To help you tone, tighten, and activate your backside, I’ve created two bodyweight workouts that  target the rump. Each video provides a series of functional exercises that work the butt, hip, and core muscles. They are versatile workouts that require no equipment and only a few feet of space, so your makeshift gym can be a hotel room, a park, or even the beach. The moves in each exercise routine will build lean muscle, boost your metabolism, and help you on your way to getting a strong, lean, powerful body and tight, toned BUTT!


The drills in the videos above can get you started, but to really kick your rear in gear you’ll want to get on the weight room. Here are some of my all time FAVORITE butt exercises to get you going:

The best way to combat gluteal amnesia is with gluteal mindfulness – exercises targeted at strengthening the glutes and working on our daily movement patterns so that the glutes get awake and involved. Give your butt the BOOST it needs to be powerful, strong, and HAPPY by making butt muscle specific exercises a part of your weekly workout regimen. As always, check with your doctor or physical therapist before starting this or any other exercise routine and get recommendations based on your needs. Have you dealt with “gluteal amnesia”? What is your favorite butt strength training move? My number one favorite is the deadlift!

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Here’s to you and your beautifully strong BUTT!

Caroline

Want to build a balanced body? Check out my book, Balanced Body Breakthrough and get your mind, body, and spirit in great shape so you can love your life.

If you are interested in scheduling a consultation to discuss ways we can work with together and improve your health and happiness, contact me at: carolinejordanfitness@gmail.com

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Too Tired for Life After Work? Try These Quick Tips for Renewed Energy

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You get home from a long work day and feel the fatigue hit you when you walk in the door. You had hoped to go for a run, check out that yoga class, or meet a friend for dinner but you are just…. so…. tired. The only thing that sounds good is hitting the couch and ordering up delivery. Its just too easy to put on your pjs and cancel everything, who cares if its only 7pm?

Sound familiar? You are not alone. We all struggle with that “5 o clock somewhere” exhaustion. This often leads us to look for relaxation in sources that have a “numbing” sensation. A few cocktails, real housewives episodes, or snack foods later we are ready for bed, without ever REALLY relaxing or renewing our energy from a long work day.

Heres the irony in it all : the less you do, the less energy you are going to have. The more you do the more energy you are going to have. Its just like exercise. The more you exercise, the more energy you have; the less you exercise, the less energy you have. Intuitively, we know this is true, but it can be hard to put into practice, especially after a stressful work day.

What can you do if you don’t want to spend ALL of your nights with the remote, the couch, and the television? Here are my suggestions for ways you can shake off post-work fatigue and transition into your evening with energy for a personal life beyond the T.V.

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Work to Life Transitions. Strategies to Prevent 5 O Clock Exhaustion from sidelining your life. 

    • Have a healthy, stress busting ritual you put between work and the rest of your night. Plan ahead and prepare something RELAXING you can do just for you immediately when you get home from work. Take a hot bath, do ten minutes of yoga, get outside and go for a walk, the options are endless. Get creative and personalize a few feel-good transitions that work for you.
    • Unplug for 10-20 minutes (or more). Put your work phone, email, or to-do list away for a set “digital detox”. Set a timer if you need to, but make it uninterrupted YOU time. Even if it is a 5 minute seated breathing exercise, any time you take to unplug will help you feel more grounded (and less likely to dive head first into a bottle of wine) when you get home.
    • Head to the gym, a workout class, a run club, or a sports practice straight from work. Pack all your clothes, a water bottle, and a healthy snack in your gym bag to bring with you so you don’t have to run home and get anything. Movement is medicine. Exercise might not sound enticing after a long work day, but is always a good decision. Think of how good you’ll feel after a workout, let this motivate you to follow through with your exercise plans no matter how drained you feel from your work. Even a short workout session will help clear your mind and restore your energy.
    • Make healthy dinner plans with your friends or loved ones. Friends don’t let friends eat dinner in front of the iPhone. Make the dinner table a no-tech zone and engage in real, quality conversation with those you love. You’ll get to 1. unplug from work and 2. create meaningful relationships over a healthy meal. This is much healthier and happier for you than multitasking mindlessly while eating. Break the habit of reading work emails or watching reruns while you eat. Focusing on what you’re putting into your mouth can help you slow down and really pay attention to the task at hand. Enjoy it, savor it, and your mindfulness will help you digest well, feel full, and appreciate every bite.
    • Walk or bike ride as your commute to work. This can be a great way to get fresh air and create a buffer between work and home.
    • Get OUTSIDE.  Do you have a beautiful, open space where you can walk? A track? A path? A loop that you enjoy that gives you energy, that makes you feel good, and gets you out in nature? Take a detour after work to a park, beach, bridge, ANYWHERE outdoors that allows you to exhale.
    • Pay in advance and sign up for a workout class, session with a personal trainer, or hobby class (cooking, art, etc) after work. When you have paid and registered you are much more likely to show up for yourself.
    • Make a phone date with a good friend. Schedule a call with someone you love for after work. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and family will. Make time for the people who make your life meaningful and allow this time to help you decompress from your day. 
    • Don’t let alcohol be your transition. Many adults get in the habit of having a drink after work, to relax and take a load off. Find a healthy replacement for the after-work drink. Develop non-drinking means of relaxation. Build awareness into your habits when it comes to alcohol. If you feel you need it to relax, think about other activities that are relaxing and enjoyable to you – working out, taking a walk outside, listening to music, reading, etc – and schedule those into your life as a means of unwinding instead of looking for stress relief in a drink.
    • Don’t use food as your transition either! It can become a habit to hit the appetizers right when you walk in the door…. adding up to hundreds of calories and you haven’t even had dinner. Have a light snack if you are REALLY hungry. If you are not physically hungry and are eating to get rid of the work day, go do something to help clear the stress that doesn’t involve emotional eating. Food is not a fix.
    • Put on some music that you love. Whatever tunes you need to feel some relief from a long day – turn up the volume and sing along if it helps you blow off steam.
    • Do a quick youtube stretch or foam rolling video. Its easy, free, and works with your schedule. Make a pinterest board of your favorite go-to videos so all you’ll have to do is press play when you walk in the door. Here is one of my personal favorite end of day stretching routines:

Whats one healthy way you transition from a busy work day to a relaxing evening? Leave me a comment below with your favorite way to ease into your evening.

Its always going to be a challenge to move your mind from a busy work day to a present and positive personal life. I believe if you build the habit of healthy transitions from one world to the next you’ll be enjoying much more than Real Housewives. You’ll be living a more balanced, healthy, and fulfilling life.

Bottom line: You must make time for yourself at the end of your workday. You’ll feel better, sleep better, and LIVE better with healthy downtime just for YOU. And isn’t that whats life all about? LIVE WELL – lets make this one life COUNT!

Yours in happiness,

Caroline

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Summer Workout Playlist 2014

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June 2, 2014 in San Francisco. SO. COLD. RIGHT. NOW. 

I hope its HOT where you are! In San Francisco, summer is the coldest time of our year, with fog and temperatures that can hit in the 40s and below. You may have heard the Mark Twain quote,the coldest winter I’ve ever spent was a summer in San Francisco”. Its TRUE. We are freezing our butts off right now.

Whats helped beat the “summertime sadness” in San Francisco has been updating my workout playlist with some new songs. It has made a HUGE difference in my summer workout motivation. Never underestimate the positive power of a playlist! Turn these tunes on next time you are in need of motivation to get moving.

Caroline’s Summer Workout Mix 2014 


For me, music makes my smile brighter during my workouts. It adds that extra something that motivates me to go further or work harder! Whats on your playlist this Summer? Leave me a comment below and let me know what you are sweating to!

Heres to awesome workouts with great playlists that keep you feeling fantastic no matter what the weather 🙂

In happiness and health,

Caroline

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Buff up your Body Image With This Body Love Strength Workout.

Want to build a stronger body image? Buff up your body image with this body love strength workout.

positive body image

Every time i look in the mirror I choose to celebrate what I’ve got vs. hate what Im not. Its a constant work in progress and somedays are easier than others. Love it what we are born with, self-criticism is what we’ve learned here. The only challenge greater than learning to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, is learning to walk a lifetime comfortably in your own.

In the body image obsessed world we live in today,  having a positive, confident body image is extremely challenging. You are constantly surrounded by the message that if you just had “six pack abs”, a “lean toned physique”, or a “brazillian booty” you’d be happy and successful. Well we all know thats NOT true, but if you are around anything enough it influences you.

You gotta work hard every day to choose self-love over self-hate. By accepting and loving yourself you can inspire others to do the same. Body confidence and self-love is a muscle, the more you work on it the stronger it gets. There’s no better time than right now — yep, right this very minute! — to get started on some serious body-love. Here are my “body love muscle” strength workout tips. Do a self-love mental pushup with these suggestions for success and REPEAT!

Buff up your Body Image with this Body Love Strength Workout (to be done daily times one million reps)

  • Stop the comparison or body bashing when it starts. Stay alert to fighting negative self-talk. Catch yourself when you find yourself saying, “I wish I had her this” or “Id rather look like that”. Nip it at the bud. Don’t build a habit of comparing yourself to others. You are you and that is that. Work to be the best possible YOU vs trying to be a second rate version of someone else. When that little voice of doom pops up in your mind trying to remind you how horrible you think you are, have a strategy for turning those negatives to positives. No one is perfect! When you find yourself being self critical immediately stop and turn your talk around.
  • Talk it out. Feeling bummed about your body? Talk to a friend, coach, or kind ear about it! Getting your feelings out in the open will help you 1. realize they are just thoughts and 2. work to do something positive about them. Thoughts become things – when you bring them out in the open by talking them out with a friend you can help them grow into positive things vs. allowing them to drive you crazy keeping them inside.
  • Become a critical viewer of social and media messages.  Pay attention to images, slogans, or attitudes that make you feel bad about yourself or your body. You have to learn to shield yourself from the constant negative media and culture messages. Look at magazines, tv, fitness images, and other sources of “social image pressure” that make you feel badly about your body image and GET RID of your exposure to them! If you can’t get rid of them, put your blinders on. Be a conscious consumer at all times and protect your mental health with the images you choose to be around.
  • Surround yourself with positive people.  It is easier to feel good about yourself and your body when you are around others who are supportive and who recognize the importance of liking yourself just as you naturally are. Friends don’t let friends engage in “fat talk” or “body shaming”. If you catch your social circle obsessing or stressing about image in a negative way, bring attention to it and ask to STOP it. That talk is toxic.
  • MOVE your body. Exercise not only changes your BODY. It changes your MIND, your ATTITUDE and your MOOD. Movement therapy is something that helps improve everyone’s sense of being. Exercise because you love your body, not because you hate it. Move to generate positive energy, sweat out negative energy, and to be healthy. Being active is one of the best ways to support your health and enjoy life!
  • STOP defining yourself with numbers. You are not your weight. You are not your body fat percentage. You are not your mile speed. You are not your bra size. You are SO SO much more than a number. Don’t give power to or allow numbers to define you. Remember: the scale LIES anyway so why trust it’s judgement or give it’s values power over your mental health, emotional health, and life?? At the end of your life are you really going to remember the numbers? NO. You are going to remember the quality of your life based off how you lived it. And being obsessed with the scale is not a happy way spend your days.
  • Work the Gratitude. Snap out of a negative body funk by giving THANKS for your body. YOUR BODY IS AMAZING. Its a miracle. Its a gift. Stop focusing on the one thing its not and start celebrating all the wonderful things it IS. Appreciate all that your body can do.  Every day your body carries you closer to your dreams.  Celebrate all of the amazing things your body does for you—running, dancing, breathing, laughing, dreaming, etc. Appreciating all that you have to be grateful for is one the very best ways to remember that you’re so very lucky to be uniquely YOU. Your body is the most incredible instrument you will ever own, stay thankful always.
  • Do Some GOOD. Use the time and energy that you might have spent worrying about food, calories, and your weight to do something to help others.  Sometimes reaching out to other people can help you feel better about yourself and can make a positive change in our world.
  • Learn to be happy with what you have while you pursue what you want. I do believe it is possible to love yourself and work on self improvement, when the intention for change comes from a compassionate place vs a place of criticism or self hate. When you accept and love yourself and your body, you know that whatever healthy changes you are making isn’t to change a part of you. It isn’t coming from a place of, “There’s something wrong with me, and I need to fix it.” It’s coming from a place of, “I’m enhancing my life. This healthy choice is good for my mind, body, and spirit.”
  • Look at yourself as a whole person.  When you see yourself in a mirror or in your mind, choose not to focus on specific body parts.  See yourself as you want others to see you–as a whole person with a healthy mind, heart, and soul <3
  • Remind yourself that “true beauty” is not simply skin deep.  When you feel good about yourself and who you are, you carry yourself with a sense of confidence, self-acceptance, and openness that makes you beautiful regardless of whether you physically look like a supermodel.  Beauty is a state of mind, not a state of your body.

Do you work on your positive body image, self-confidence, and self-esteem? Leave a comment below and let me know one way you strengthen your body love muscle.

Be the change in a world full of body-hate. Lead by example. BE YOURSELF, ACCEPT YOURSELF, VALUE YOURSELF, FORGIVE YOURSELF, BLESS YOURSELF, EXPRESS YOURSELF, TRUST YOURSELF, LOVE YOURSELF, EMPOWER YOURSELF. You are you and that is that – no apologies or regrets. You get one body and one life – work to love it and have a healthy relationship with it (imperfections included!). Be positive, be present, this is your LIFE. Don’t wait. Love your body now and live every second in gratitude, health, and happiness. You can’t be real if you are trying to be perfect, and you can’t be authentically YOU either. Be you, be real, be amazing.

Sending you love and light. Keep working those body image push-ups, you’re doing great.

Caroline

Want more help on loving yourself inside and out? Check out my book, Balanced Body Breakthrough . I’ve got chapters worth of content on body image, body confidence, self love, self-esteem, and self-care. It will help you take action and love yourself so you can love your life.

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