Tag Archives: excercise

Featured: Ross Femrite

Recently I was with a couple of friends who were ordering diet pills online that were advertised for “the person who doesn’t have extra time to exercise”. This made me think of how my brother would take the situation. See, my brother is going to grad school, works as a bartender, has an active social life, plays rugby, and does triathlon. Because he has a work hard/play hard attitude and a desire to never cut corners, I know he would never be online buying a magical solution. So, of course I needed to interview him.

(EF): What’s your motivation for working out?

(RF): I always have goals that I am striving to reach to keep me motivated.  Right now I am getting ready for Crossfit games [in February].  Then, my goal will be to break the five-hour mark for the half Ironman.  After that  I need to get ready for Fall rugby season.  This always gives me something to work toward.

(EF): Why is it important to stay active?

(RF): You are only given one body, so why not take care of it?  There are a million studies out there showing how much activity helps you in all aspects of your life.  I really think if you had to choose 1 thing to improve your overall health,  activity should be the #1 choice.

(EF): What’s in that huge jug of powder you always have?

(RF): It is protein, the building blocks of your muscles.  I aim for about 200g of protein per day during training and without adding protein, it would be hard to get there on a normal diet.

(EF): What made you choose the career in PT?

(RF): I really wanted a career in the medical field where I was able to spend a lot of time working with people.  As a PT I get to do it on a daily basis.  It is also really rewarding to see people come in with problems that impact their life and be able to help them.

(EF): Best advice you’ve ever gotten for staying shape?

(RF): Always find a goal that you want to achieve and then tell everyone that goal.  It is a lot harder to quit when you know you will have to explain to people why you fell short and quit.

(EF): Advice for me in getting in shape?

(RF): Getting in shape is a slow process and can start anywhere and go anywhere.  Start slow even if it is walking for 20 minutes 3 days a week.  If you slowly increase that and add in running you will be running a 5k in no time.  Then you can increase to longer distances as you build up your fitness.  I am a good example I would have never guess I would do a half Ironman when I graduated High school, but I got there slowly over many years. Just stick to it and it will get better.

(EF): Hardest you’ve ever pushed yourself?

(RF): The last part of the half Ironman, I was dying.  The last 3 miles were not fun. The furthest I have run and biked is 13.1 miles and 56 miles respectfully.

(EF): Favorite triathlon?

(RF): I really like the Buffalo triathlon.  It is well run and just a good atmosphere, It’s probably why I have done it the last 3 years.

(EF): Why do you like Rugby?

(RF): It combines so many skills in to one sport.  You need endurance because it is constantly going.  You need strength to go up against some of those guys.  It also involves a lot of skill.  It is very physical, just like football, but you don’t have to deal with all those pads.  If you have to hide behind lots of pads to make a tackle or be tackled maybe you’re not as badass as you think you are.  The people I have played rugby with are always a good group of guys.  I have met a lot of my good friend through rugby.

(EF): Why do you like triathlons?

(RF): It keeps me in shape and gives me goals to achieve.  I am always looking to see how far I can push my body physically.  When I work out I get bored, if I do the same thing over and over.  This is true even when I race.  Triathlons give me the opportunity to always be doing something different with my workout.  Then, when I race, if I get bored I know a new leg is always right around the corner.  It makes you a more well-rounded athlete.

(EF): What is the coolest thing you’ve ever done?

(RF): I skied above the clouds in the Alps of Switzerland with 1 ½ feet of fresh powder.

(EF):Where is the coolest place you’ve ever been?

(RF): I loved Bahamas sailing from island to island for a week.  Every island was different and each reef had new things to explore.

(EF): If you won the lottery, what would you buy?

(RF): I would first pay off all of my loans and my sisters loans for school.   I would buy my parents their condo by the river.  Donate money to the Courage Center, the Eastside Banshees, and the UMN PT program.  Then I would so many toys, sports equipment, wave-runners, boats, most of the items at REI, ect….

(EF): I’m going to need you to start buying more lottery tickets. On what was your last splurge?

(RF): Being a Grad student really doesn’t allow me any money to splurge on anything.  I just bought new running shoes that weren’t cheap, but I really wanted them.

(EF): What’s something people would be surprised to learn about you?

(RF): I have been to over 30 different musicals.  I really do enjoy them and listen to the soundtracks when I run.  Most people don’t think I fit in to that stereotype.

(EF): What are things we can do on a daily basis to live a good life?

(RF): Enjoy the little things in life.  It is the little enjoyments that make it all worth it.  Also always look at situations from others point of view, it will make you a better person.

(EF): Do you have someone you look to for inspiration in your life?

It is cliché, but I look up to my parents.  They always work hard and are good people and that’s what I try to be.  Plus they are still standing after putting up with me for 27 years, so they are obviously very strong.

(EF): True dat. What activity makes you most happy?

(RF): I can honestly say that working out makes me happy.  I look forward to it and it gives me a sense of accomplishment.  If not that, then laying on the beach in the sunshine.

(EF): Who’s the funniest person in the world?

(RF): I am and if you don’t believe me then just ask me.

(EF): Who do you admire most in the area of sports?

(RF): I admire the little guys who were not given god-given talent, but worked really hard to get the professional level.  It makes me angry when people like them make it and people who are naturally talented just throw it all away.

(EF): In the area of design?

(RF): I am sorry Erika, but I can’t even give you a name.  Mr. Effle for his tower and the iron structure inside the statue of liberty.

(EF): Mr. Effle? He sounds fancy. What would your last meal be?

(RF): It would be ribs with and Oreo Blizzard.  My side items would be sweet potato fries and cheesy potatoes.

(EF): What would you tell the 18-year-old you?

(RF): I would just point out what is really important in life.  I think 18-year-old me had a very warped sense of what was important.  I didn’t really have a good plan of where I was going or what I needed to get there.

(EF): If you could give someone advice, what would it be?

(RF): Look for what really makes you happy and what you enjoy.  This is one aspect in your life where you need to be selfish.  If you pursue that then the rest will fall in to place.  Also, there are no short cuts or substitute for hard work.  If you really want something then it is worth working hard for it.

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Best Workout Music

You may remember that during my Positivity Project I emphasized music to lift my mood.  Well, music also has a significant affect your work-out. Music allows athletes to work harder and perform better, but not without perceiving the resulting increased level of exertion. Here’s what I’m listening to:

  • Make It Take It by Amanda Blank
  • Check It Out by Nicki Minaj & will.i.am
  • Pretty Girl Rock by Keri Hilson
  • Just Dance by Lady Gaga
  • Stand Up Tall by Basement Jaxx
  • Anti Matter by N.E.R.D.
  • Shake It to the Ground by DJ Blaqstarr featuring Rye Rye
  • Hottie Boombalottie by Kef
  • What About Your Friends by TLC
  • Get Up by Mary Mary
  • Boyz by M.I.A.

Project: Get Out

The project I’m currently working on is one where I exercise more. Did you know that when asked, people over-estimate how much they worked out the month before by 70%? I’ve been thinking about how we over-estimate the amount we work out and under-estimate how much we spend and eat. Does anyone remember what the psychological phenomenon is called?

Just like the food project, I’m not doing this to lose weight, in fact, you’re more likely to stick to a work-out routine if you aren’t doing it to lose weight. I’m doing it to boost energy and most of all, be happier. It’s literally night and day what I’m like after a week of frequent exercise and a week without. Besides giving me self-confidence and releasing feel good endorphins, it also gives me a sense of routine in my life so I don’t feel out of control. Plus, my brother tells me exercising prevents Alzheimers.

So, I will be

  • Running 4 times this week
  • Parking in spots farthest away
  • Putting on music to dance to
  • Taking the stairs (where there are any–it’s Florida)
  • Going for walks
  • Going to the gym 6 times a week

Carried over from past projects:

  • Being open to try new things
  • Letting go
  • Stay within my budget
  • Gluten-free diet.
  • More fresh veggies and fruits.
  • More hobbies and activities, less TV.
  • Avoid things that insult my soul
  • Keep a gratitude journal
  • Maintain a positive attitude
  • Be more charitable and generous
  • Put my friends/family first

No to Negative

“There is nothing so pitiful as a young cynic because he has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing.” — Maya Angelou

It’s a little ironic that the day I get back from visiting my most sarcastic friend in the most stereotypically depressing city in the world, I start a project on staying optimistic. Yesterday I woke up at 4am (their time) and got into Orlando (having only had sprite and a few handfuls of peanuts) at 4pm. Logan was running late, so by the time I got home it was 6:30. It was probably the worst possible day for trying to be positive, because I was so tired I was in hysterics, even getting frustrated with Logan for not dropping his chili immediately to say goodnight to me. He laughed, I got more neurotic. Then today I caught myself telling Graham that I suck at being positive. Good start.

Here’s the plan:

  • Stay upbeat and see the bright side of things. Studies show that even when you act like you’re in a good mood, not only does it lift the people around you up, but you actually start feeling happier yourself.
  • Have a well-rounded diet with an emphasis on good mood foods like complex carbs (e.g. brown rice, quinoa), B vitamins (e.g. milk, citrus fruits), “happy fats” (e.g. Fish oil, olive oil) and of course anadamine (chocolate!). This also means limiting my intake of depressant like alcohol and not over-eating.
  • Exercise. Preferably outside and at least 20 minutes a day. I’m going to do an exercise project later, but the release of endorphins when you exercise has too much of an impact on positivity to not include.
  • Keep myself surrounded by positive activities like listening to comedy and positive music, reading Bossy Pants by Tina Fey and only watching comedy movies/shows.
  • Keep myself surrounded by positive people. Also, just making sure I don’t isolate myself. Studies show that both extroverts AND introverts get a mood boost from connecting with other people.
  • Smile and laugh more.
  • What is it that they say at AA? “Accept the things I can not change”? This goes for events, people and all the lists I keep.
  • Write in a gratitude journal everyday.

Carried over from other projects:

  • Gluten-free diet.
  • More fresh veggies and fruits.
  • More hobbies and activities, less TV.
  • Avoid things that conflict with who I am.