Thursday, May 30, 2013

PoW PoW - Gun Show!

This is a sponsored post and part of a campaign with Under Armour and FitFluential

photo credit
photo credit

I have always been a fan of women with biceps. I remember watching "What's Love Got To Do With It" and being fascinated by Angela Bassett's arms. She was so beautiful as Tina Turner and so ripped! What about Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor in the Terminator movies?!?! I remember wanting to have her arms soooo bad and I'm pretty sure that this is when my obsession with bicep veins started!

As part of my participation in the Under Armour What's Beautiful campaign, I have been completing various challenges on my journey to crushing the goal that I have set for myself! One of these challenges was sheer PERFECTION and I couldn't wait to share it with you guys!

The Up in Arms Challenge is about sharing what exercise best shows off your arms! Now, I'm not being a showoff or jerk here but my arms are one of the best parts of my body. Some time back, I did a Things I Like About Me post and I wrote
"5. My arms. *I lift hard and I lift heavy.
 My arms can wrap themselves around The Princess 
and show her that I love her to the moon & back. 
My arms can lift my daughter's wheelchair in & out 
of the car without assistance. 
My arms can carry multiple bags of groceries in 
one trip from the car to the house. 
My arms look great in sleeveless clothing. #yeahisaidit" 

We can blame it on my never-ending quest to have arms like Angela or Linda! I couldn't decide on just ONE exercise so I'm going to share with you one of my bicep & tricep workouts!

Standing cable rope curls
5 sets of 10
Standing tricep extension
5 sets of 15

Seated incline bicep curls
5 sets of 12
Lying tricep pullover
5 sets of 10

Hammerstrength bicep curl
5 sets of 10
Standing tricep kickbacks
5 sets of 8
LifeFitness dips
5 sets of 6

If you are interested in other arm workouts, you can check out the workout video Tom & I shared in my How I Get It Done post or head over to Muscle and Fitness Hers. IFBB Figure Pro Jelena Abbou shares her "bare bones" approach to arms training in her Better Bi's and Tri's article.

Feel free to check out the other challenges I've completed on my profile page! You can tweet or pin any of my images if you so desire! And if you're still dragging your feet, just join the competition! Stop stalling! I know you wanna! Head over to the What's Beautiful website and create your profile!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Sunday, May 26, 2013

There Are No Words

Very rarely am I speechless.

There are very few times when I don't have some type of comment to make.

However, this is one of those rare times.

For now, I will let the picture do all of the talking. And yes, I will do a follow-up post once I can wrap my head around what I'm seeing.

Excuse my wedgie in the picture on the right :)

Thursday, May 23, 2013

As Good As It Seems..?

First, I would like to say thank you for your awesome comments on my Light 'Em Up post. For some reason, Blogger is being a total jerk and won't let me comment to each person individually...ugh! But I want to thank those of you who commented (Melissa, Crystal, Sable, Liz, and Donloree) to know that you ladies rock & I appreciate you (I mean it!).

The Boss #2 and I at the 2012 AZ Open
For those of you who have been following my blog for some time or know me in "real life", you know that my husband Tom aka The Boss #2 is my trainer. Genie aka The Boss aka the Yellow in "Black & Yellow's Excellent Adventure" is the nutrition/food component of this team but it's Tom who puts together the majority of my workouts, bosses me around assists me in the gym, and so on.

When most people find out that my husband is my trainer, their first response is usually "That must be awesome. I would love for my __ to be my trainer". I will then smile, nod, and give some generic response about how it's nice that my significant other is knowledgeable about training and helps me as I work towards my competition goals, stay healthy, and get stronger.

Another trophy for his our collection ;)
Most of the times I mean this when I say it and other times I want to look them in their face and say "Trust me, this set-up is crazy" or as Genie & I often say "#thatshitcray".

Urban Chick Foto
Before you start getting huffy, giving me the stank eye, or commenting on how ungrateful I am - let me explain. Now, you're probably looking at the picture above and thinking to yourself that it's so sweet of Tom to be helping me with my shoe but that's not the true story. True story is he was telling me how crusty my feet looked and asking what was going on with one of my toes!!

I'm kidding! He was actually helping me change shoes in between shots so I wouldn't fall over because he knows how much of a klutz I am :)

Back to what I was saying about having my husband as my trainer....

At times it is incredibly wonderful to have my partner-in-crime as the person "in charge" of designing workouts and keeping an eye on me in the gym. Tom knows me (or at least he better after almost 13 years!) and he can tell when I'm not "living up to my potential".

He knows when I say that I can't do another rep, whether I'm saying that because I'm lazy or because I really have reached my stopping point. The man knows, by looking at me, what adjustments need to be made. He knows whether I've been getting enough sleep, drinking my water, eating my meals, or if I'm starting to get sick. In short, the man seems to know everything.

Puttin' it down in our hometown - 2011 NPC Terminator
Sometimes, this is wonderful and other times it sucketh much. There are times when I just want to forget about finishing my daily allotment of water and just guzzle a beer. Or I have no desire to get up early to do my cardio and I just want to use that time to get more sleep. You know what happens during these times?? Tom is there to tell me "Nope. Do what you need to do." He's there to tell me to stop being emotional, stop whining, and yes, even to tell that I'm not making progress but I'm not doing 100% the work.

This can be hard because I know he is telling me these things as my "Trainer" and not my "Husband". I know when he looks at my weekly progress pictures and points out the weak areas, he's not doing it to be hurtful but to be helpful. My mind knows it but sometimes, my heart & feelings don't. He also knows that when he tells me to do something and I ask why,  it might not be about me trying to be difficult or question his ability to train me (I'm a librarian! We're information!).

We have been doing this thang for almost three years and have come to the agreement that we HAVE to talk or even scream it out, if necessary. When he is providing feedback, I will ask him if I'm getting the feedback from Tom the Trainer or Tom the Husband because honestly, that can affect how I will receive it. It's a work in progress but we are learning what works for us and what doesn't. In the end, our relationship as husband & wife is more important than our relationship as trainer & trainee.

With that said, I better go do my cardio before Tom the Trainer scolds me ;)

Question --> Are any of you trained by your significant other? 
Any insight you would like to share? Nuggets of advice to give?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

New Release Tuesday

I have this secret crush (well...I guess it's not a secret anymore) crush on Ne-Yo. I tend to like songs that have him on it, even if I don't like the other featured artists #strange

I'm not a big fan of Wiz Khalifa but DJ Felli Fel...well...I can get down with him. Are you familiar with his music? If not, check out his songs Boomerang and Get Buck in Here. I have both in my workout playlist.

Speaking of my workout playlist, I'm in need of some new tunes!!! Any suggestions?? 

Friday, May 17, 2013

Light 'em Up!

Tom was awesome enough to put together a video of
one of my recent back workouts. 
Operation Build-a-Back is still in effect!

This workout was composed of:

Wide grip lat pulldowns
105 x 12 (2 sets)  120 x 10 (2 sets)

Close grip pulldown
90 x 14 (4 sets)

Bent over row (Smith machine)
25/25 x 10 (2 sets)  35/35 x 8 (2 sets)  45/45 x 6 (2 sets)

Hammer Strength MTS Row machine
40/40 x 10 (2 sets)  50/50 x 10 (2 sets)

Cable high rows
65 x 10 (4 sets)
Straight arm cable pulldown
65 x 10 (2 sets)   90 x 10 (2 sets)

I hope you enjoy what Tom has created with a dash of my goofy behavior & atrocious posing!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Challenge Accepted!

As I shared with y'all in my "What's Beautiful? I'll Show You!!" post, I am participating in the Under Armour What's Beautiful campaign! I have begun looking at the list of challenges and since Sunday, I have completed 3! Can a girl get a "woot woot" up in here?!? :)

One of the challenges I'm working on is the "Give It Up" challenge. The challenge is simple - post a photo of something youʼre willing to sacrifice in order to meet your goal.

At first I wasn't sure what I could post...I mean....I'm in prep (Black and Yellow's Excellent Adventure sound familiar to anyone??) so I've pretty much given up! I've given up carbs, sweets, booze, even coffee so what else is there to give?!?!

Then it hit me.

I have slowly been giving something up over the course of the last 12 weeks. It wasn't a food item, or a beverage, or the love of my life green olives. was something else....something B-I-G!

If you want to know what I let go in pursuit of my goals and for the sake of my sanity, check out my Give It Up challenge post on my What's Beautiful page!

There's still time to join the challenge so if you've been debating about whether you should join in the fun or not, stop thinking and just do it! Christine over at Oatmeal in My Bowl put together a great post entitled "@UAWomen #WhatsBeautiful Navigation Site Tutorial" to help you create a profile and navigate the site!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

What's Beautiful? I'll Show You!!

This is a sponsored post and part of a campaign with Under Armour and FitFluential.

Under Armour has launched the third edition of its "What’s Beautiful" campaign and I am beyond excited that, as a FitFluential Ambassador, I have been asked to be a part of all this fabulousity! (I'm pretty certain I just made up a

What's Beautiful is an 8 week competition to redefine the female athlete. This is not for professional athletes or models. This is for the every day active woman.This is about encouraging woman to set goals for themselves and supporting them as they conquer their goals! It's about challenging you to push past your limits and help rewrite the definition of beauty!

From the What's Beautiful website -


Together we’re redefining the female athlete by setting epic goals and pushing past where we’ve ever been and where we thought we could go. Join us. Set your own personal goal. Then document your journey by posting videos and photos that tell your story from start to victory.
We’ll continuously post challenges for you. But that’s just the beginning. Show us your journey. Show us what makes your story the one that stands out from the rest. If you meet your goal, set a new one. Make it even bigger. Prove to everyone, and yourself, that you have more than what it takes.


Every week we’ll give away Under Armour Swag Bags full of gear to women who are seriously getting it. We’ll also feature profiles on our home page and in the “Top Performers” section of women who are really setting an example for all of us.
After 8 weeks, we’ll announce the 10 finalists who’ve documented the most impressive, motivated, monumental stories.

Winners will be announced mid-July."


My goal is "I will be a force to be reckoned with. I will finish in the top 10 of my first national figure competition. I WILL."

Top 10?!?! That seems pretty lofty for someone who is stepping on the national stage for the first time and has yet to win an overall title let alone her figure class, doesn't it?? But you know what, I don't care! I need to push myself and change my mindset. I can be a contender - scratch that - I WILL be a contender!

This is my page on the What’s Beautiful website that you can check out.  This is where you will find my pictures, videos and other challenges I will complete as I work towards the goal I have set for myself.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?? Is there something you want to achieve but haven't quite gotten off the couch per se? Ready to set a goal for yourself?

I have created a team, Team Invictus, that I hope you will consider joining. The goal of Team Invictus to be healthier  happier, stronger, bolder, more active than the old you!  Take a few minutes to watch this video which shows you how to sign up, how to cheer on other women who are participating in this competition, find challenges to conquer, and more. If you would like to join my team or any of the other incredible teams that have been formed, you can do so HERE

Ladies, this is the perfect opportunity to push yourself to the next level - whatever that might be. Let's set a goal, kick ass, support one another, and redefine what's beautiful.

I hope that you'll join me!

On Twitter & Instagram:  @UAWomen #whatsbeautiful #iwill @fitfluential #FitFluential @mrsfitlibrarian

Friday, May 10, 2013

Now I Can Breathe

The pictures below have been my life for the past few days...

We went from this....

To this....

Tom telling The Princess stories while we waited to go to the operating room

When The Princess slept, I would try to do the same.

I am happy to report that The Princess is home, resting, and recovering beautifully.

I have some incredible news that I can't wait to share with y'all but it will have to hold until Monday! Have a wonderful weekend and to those of you who moms, Happy Mother's Day!!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

New Release Tuesday

I'm still trying to decide how I feel about this song but I do know that I love Janelle's! I want her red lipstick! I remember seeing her at the Grammy's and vowing to find a shade of red lipstick that looked as fabulous on me as it did on her.

But I digress....

The song is slowly growing on me...I like it a bit more each time I hear it...give it a listen...

Monday, May 6, 2013

Gym Swag...

I don't have any. Gym swag, that is. What is "swag" anyway? I guess I could look it up in the Urban Dictionary (because really, the Merriam-Webster dictionary just isn't as but I think I'll skip it for now....anywhooooo.....

I have been asked about where I shop for my workout clothes, what brands I like, and the such. Here's the bottom line, I kinda (or not really "kinda") hate to spend a lot of money on workout clothes! I would rather spend $90 on a pair of Steve Madden shoes than a pair of workout leggings I know I'm going to sweat like a pig in. Is that sad? I also know that it's possible to buy cute, great fitting workout clothes without spending all of my allowance - you just have to keep your eyes open and consider stores you haven't in the past!

I didn't always consider Old Navy a store that I would buy my workout clothes from. I love their dresses and shirts but their workout clothes....ehhh....I was a bit leery. But...and a big BUT here...they have really stepped up their game over the last year or two. The quality of their workout clothes is so much better than it has been in the past and the selection is great. Their options are reasonably priced but I love when I find their workout clothes in the clearance section. I found the above Women's Active compression capris on the clearance rack for $9!!! P.S. In case you're wondering, my top in the above pic is from JC Penny and I got it for $7...holla!

A brand that I recently discovered in the past year and really like is X2X Training Gear. While the women's selection isn't as large as the men's, it is slowly growing. I purchased their Ladies Burnout Tank (in black & purple) while I was at last year's Olympia Expo and I love it. The cut is flattering and the fit is amazing. I highly recommend following them on Facebook and/or Twitter - they use both to share info about sales, giveaways, etc.

Lucy Activewear is another brand that makes my heart...and wallet happy! I stumbled upon their clothing about 5 years ago when I was in Richmond, VA visiting family. We were at an outdoor outlet mall and I walked into their store just to browse for things I might be able to wear to bikram yoga. That day, I left with a bag full of clothes and have been shopping with them ever since! I don't normally wear shorter, tight fitting workout shorts but there's something about Lucy's Perfect Booty shorts (in both pictures above) that make me feel like my bottom half is bangin'. Now Lucy's prices are a bit high but they have phenomenal sales so consider them the next time you need need gear.

Other stores that I have success finding clothing at include Walmart (I love Danskin Now!!), Forever 21 (make sure to try their clothes on before you buy - it can run small), and Ross (be prepared to really look through each rack. This store requires time & patience).

There you have it...some of the brands and stores I like. Remember, you can find awesome clothes at reasonable prices - you just have to look!

Now, if I could just find a brand that would help me not look like a hot mess while at the gym.... ;)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

That Was Then...

Tamietti Photography

The picture above is from my wedding day on October 16, 2004. I'm not going to lie - I was totally feelin' myself that day! I had busted my butt (or so I thought) in the gym to ensure that I would fit into my gorgeous wedding gown. I had a goal weight that I wanted to reach - 136 lbs - and I cardioed my little heart out to hit that "magic number". Now, at the time I did lift weights but was still fairly new at it. I didn't lift heavy per se but I did lift. As the date of my wedding got closer, I decided to stop lifting because I was afraid I was getting too "bulky" and I would not fit into my dress.

Oh 2004 Tenecia....what a silly stupid girl you were...

This picture is from last weekend. Now, I am definitely not 136 lbs (think but I'm actually happy about it! I love my muscularity and work frickin' hard in the gym to achieve it! If that's what Tenecia circa 2004 would call "bulky", then I'll take it. I still cardio my heart out now & again but my lifting has completely changed. My relationship with the gym & my mentality has completely shifted. I feel strong. I feel powerful. Sometimes I even feel like a beast...and ain't nuthin' wrong with that!

There you have it....that was then....this is now....I totally think 2013 Tenecia could totally kick 2004 Tenecia's ass :)