Badass Full Body Workout

Beware:

This is an effective home workout! No pink dumbbells. No fru fru.

I am producing weekly workout videos on my YouTube channel to bring you EFFECTIVE at home workouts that produce stability, strength and power in athletes.

No BS.

And, yes, even if you are currently holding the status of “Couch Potato” you ARE an athlete. Humans are created to MOVE, you just need to get started!

My passion is helping empower women to lift heavy, run faster, swim further, and simply just achieve those long held goals that have become buried deep for way too long.

I will post the video below but please do read through the breakdown first!

A breakdown of the workout:

Exercise 1: Frog Kicks

The exercise specifically targets the gluteus medius (side of your butt), the muscle responsible for moving the leg sideways away from your body (termed abduction).

A strong glute medius is essential for power and balance. Activating this muscle prepares your body for the explosive side-to-side movements that are common to most sports. The gluteus medius also improves hip stability, which is critical for maintaining balance for my riders, and preventing knee and ankle injuries.

Tip: If you have chronic knee or back pain I highly recommend working on your glute medius! Especially if you spend a lot of time sitting, and therefore tightening the hip flexors, it is essential to spend time on activation exercises for the glutes!

Exercise 2: Kettlebell Swings

This is one of my favourite exercises for athletes and as someone with a lot of experience, and training, with kettlebells I am very partial to their total body benefits for strength and stability.

The kettlebell swing is exceptionally efficient on improving your strength, endurance, power, and coordination in an extremely short amount of time.

Another great benefit is that the kettlebell swing is extremely useful for building explosive strength and can easily substitute for plyometric movements, for those that are looking for lower impact ways to improve power.

These are also exceptional at developing the posterior chain, creating shoulder stability as well as core strength.

This is the Queen of all exercises BUT you must use a weight too heavy to simply lift to your shoulders. It must require you to push with your glutes and hips. If you can simply lift the weight:

  1. You are at an increased risk of injury in the shoulders.
  2. You are missing all of the benefits and simply doing an awkward front raise.

A form tip: Make sure you are using your back to hold your shoulders back and down. At no point should your back be rounded or your shoulders hanging from your rotator cuff. Think of gripping the kettlebell then activating your lats (behind your arm pits) by rotating your shoulders back. Visualize trying to break the kettlebell in half.

Exercise 3: Curtsy Lunge

I like to incorporate a lot of single leg exercises in training for my athletes. This helps to target imbalances and balance.

I find curtsey lunges to be incredibly effective at targeting your glute medius (outside of glute) as well as your inner and outer thigh. It is essential to target the full leg, rather than simply the glute max. This is a great exercise for that!

Make sure you maintain good form as this is an easy one to have poor form in.

Training Tip: Pause at the bottom of your lunge to remove any momentum from the push up. If you do not feel this in your glute medius I recommend incorporating glute activation exercises as a regular part of your routine. You simply can’t work a muscle your brain does not know exists! And yes, the connection can become so weak that you have to spend time going through the “boring” activation exercises to remind your brain you have an a$$!

Use it or lose it sister!

Exercise 4: Plank Row

There are so many benefit of this exercise I will summarize in 3 points:

  • Effectively teaches core stabilization by strengthening the abdominal muscles’ ability to resist spinal extension.
  • Activates the Oblique muscles more than a regular Plank by forcing you to balance yourself while rotating.
  • Incorporates upper body rotation and improves total body balance.

To make this harder you can add a pushup between reps! I left the pushup out as many people are internally rotated at the shoulders (hunched forward) and need more pulling movements than pushing.

Form Tip: Squeeze your glutes. Make sure your hips are neither too low or too high. Stabilize your spine during the rotation.

Exercise 5: Thrusters

This is another great full body exercise that is incredibly challenging on the whole body! Thrusters help improve coordination, muscular endurance, and balance. Not only do heavy thrusters help to build overall strength, it can be a useful exercise to teach strength-speed and improve overall athleticism.

Go heavy on this one. Like the kettlebell swing the power comes from the glutes and legs. Use momentum from standing to power the weight up.

Form tip: Make sure to stay in your heels and not let the weight pull you forward. As you begin to stand up squeeze the glutes to use them as power to accelerate the weight up and over your head.

Exercise 6: Dolphin

The plank requires no introduction. It is one of the best core stability exercise and is my favourite since it does not require any bending of the spine. Our spines truly only have so many bends prior to having issues with bulging disks so I limit the amount of crunches for my athletes.

For this exercise make sure you lift your hips using your lower abs. If you struggle with a mind to body connection with your lower abs start with dead bugs and work up from there.

Form tip: Make sure to push up into your shoulders. Your shoulder blades should not stick out of your back. This is called Winged Scapula and signifies no stability in the shoulders or back. To truly benefit from the plank you must activate your body from head to toe!

Exercise 6: Twisters

Similar to the plank this is creating stability through the spine, however we are adding in rotation. This is a great way to develop strong obliques and stability through the core.

Form tip: Make sure to keep the core engaged the whole time. At no point should there be “slack”. This is also a great way to engage the lower abs.

There you have it my friends!

Complete the routine for 3-4 sets. Limit rest in between exercises to 15-30 seconds. 1 minute rest between sets. If you go heavy on the weights, which you should you little badass you, you can increase the rest to 2 minutes between sets.

*Make sure to consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Ensure use of proper form and never work through pain.

Grab your kettlebell, dumbbells, water and lets go!

And, friends, if you have any videos you would LOVE to see let it be heard! I am talking on form, injuries, workouts, nutrition, mindset. The choice is yours. Let’s build this YouTube to be the MECCA of sound fitness and health advice. You in?

Good!

Wake Up. Hug Dog. Hustle.

Start everyday with a big hug for your doggo.

“Sometimes you just have to grind it out, stake your claim on your goal and hustle, hard, for what you want MOST in life” ~ Ashley Eve

From the nervousness and doubt we feel when we take risks in our careers, to the butterflies in our bellies when we are waiting for our dressage test, the shortness of breath as we push for the final 5 minutes of our run, or the soreness in our muscles as we start a new weight training program. Our largest successes are born out of discomfort, uncertainty and risk.

Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over it became a butterfly.

Anytime you’re working to achieve something big you are working against the current. Often the opinions of the people around you are trying to push and pull you away from your destination and sometimes those closest to you can be the loudest naysayers.

Often you will hear “You are making a mistake”, “it is impossible to reach that goal” or “You will fail”. The more unique and out of the box your goals the stronger the push back will be. And, I have to admit here that I have heard the LOUDEST opposition from family and it can be very hard to receive this criticism when your OWN thoughts are trying to derail your big dreams. Even the seemingly innocent “Sleeping in won’t make that big of a difference!” are self limiting beliefs trying to stop you on your way to greatness.

The most successful among us got to where they are today because they transcended obstacles, setbacks and negativity both from others and themselves.

This, of course, is easier said than done. And this is why so many businesses, diets, athletic pursuits and health goals fail. It is one to thing to say “Never give up” (and truthfully, I am tired of bumper sticker type motivational quotes), or to post a bunch of motivational one liner memes on your Facebook account, and quite another to actually become tenacious and grind it out NO. MATTER. WHAT.

Here is the truth that everyone needs to hear:

The world does not stop you from succeeding. The universe is not conspiring for you to fail.

The reality is the universe is conspiring neither for nor against you, and the only thing that stops you from succeeding IS YOU.

Once you have convinced yourself that you will fail you are then stopped dead in your tracks. Until then it is on like Donkey Kong.

One of my favourite quotes is this:

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it” ~ Aristotle

The reason I love this quote so much is that every single successful person has had setbacks, self limiting beliefs and obstacles. Every single person has thought they may fail, has wondered if they could accomplish their goals and debated between sleeping in and working on their goals. HOWEVER the successful entertain those thoughts but push forward regardless.

Don’t believe me?

Consider everything that has been considered impossible in history. Putting a man on the moon. Diseases we have cured. Or, the fact that flying would have been considered impossible before it was done. Think about this: If you went up to someone in the 1700’s and told them people would, one day, be able to fly in a metal tube across the world they would have likely sent you to the local mental health facility for some shock therapy!

The Wright brothers, however, did not accept that flight was impossible, and they did not allow their lack of funding hold them back. They failed over and over again but they did not give up. They had many naysayers as well as no physical proof that flight was even possible, yet they pushed forward. And, look where we are now.

Your goals ARE possible. However, don’t be fooled by the self-help bullshit and the universe will give you what you desire fluff. You don’t deserve it. No one does. Those statements will leave you waiting and wanting and eventually make you fall victim to your own life. You just have to grind that shit out, stake your claim on your goal and hustle HARD for what you want.

You quite literally have to MAKE IT HAPPEN.

So, when someone looks at you and says your idea will never happen or if your subconscious beliefs tell you that you will “fail anyway, so why try” you have two choices:

  1. You can succumb to the notion that you don’t know what you are doing, you don’t have what it takes and it is a waste of time/ money.
  2. You can disagree and refuse to accept it. You have the option to say “No, you’re wrong, and I’m going to prove it”.

The impossible only becomes possible when you believe it is. Your reality is what you BELIEVE to be possible or impossible. You can fail at something 1000 times and on try 1001 succeed. Had you given up on try 1000 you would have proven yourself right, that your goal was impossible. YOU, and only you, create your reality.

The truth is that no one can prove what is or is not possible. It just takes someone with enough tenacity to come along and not give up until it is done.

Further, my biggest pet peeve is when someone says “the market is saturated, I can’t come along now and do the same thing”.

The market isn’t saturated. The world has not seen your idea or take on it. Instead, re-frame your mindset and realize that if someone else has done it before it means that you can too! Instead of seeing the market as saturated see it as an opportunity to produce your results faster by learning from others.

There is a wondrous, magical life out there waiting for you in the unknown.

And while, yes, working to achieve it will NOT be all rainbows and butterflies all the time there is a reality waiting for you that is far beyond the one you are currently wasting away in.

Ask yourself: Is your dream worth working hard for? Is it worth getting up early for? Are you willing to be uncomfortable now for your dreams? Are you willing to give up what you want RIGHT NOW for what you want most?

If the answer is yes, you are willing, then stop making excuses and go out there and accomplish it. Skinned knees, bumps and bruises provide great stories to tell so don’t be afraid of falling.

A lion sleeps in the heart of every brave person.

xo

Ashley

Equestrian Problems

I overheard someone complaining about their cats $50 per month medication.

$50. Per month.

Now, I am not saying anything bad about cats. If my husband wasn’t so allergic I would be the crazy cat lady!

But this got me wondering how absolutely out of touch riders are with reality! So, from my beautiful unicorn, I wrote my top 5 equestrian problems!

1) I have horses scattered across Ontario. When was the last time you lived 2 hours from one of your baby cats and 45 minutes from your large retired fat cat and small mini cat.

Well, photo angle makes the mini look like a maxi.

Cuteness beats logic every time!

Prior to baby I had visited Niagara Falls about as many times as I can count on one hand, in my 33 years, and I limit visits to family due to kilometers and “wear and tear” on my car. Baby Loki is 3 weeks old and I have made the 2 hour drive 3 times.

Sorry not sorry. Cars can be replaced.

2) I basically pay a mortgage payment to two different barns to keep the horses. That doesn’t include feet, vet, chiropractic, massage, nothing! Oh ya, and because Monty (fat retired cat) has back arthritis he is currently wearing $700 worth of blankets.

$700.

MY jacket isn’t even worth that much. And my husband went 2 winters WITHOUT a winter jacket so Monty could get more Back on Track blankets for his sore back!

Oh, and the $50 meds? How about $160 in Omeprazole for 30 days for your sensitive Sally’s belly. And that isn’t even the brand name Omeprazole. I don’t want to be the cause of heart problems, from shock, in my non horse friends so let’s continue on!

Monty living his best life.

3) I quit my job as an equine vet tech and got a job in a busy call centre to afford my horses.

Will this work?

And the “greatest” part about horses is that they will just keep filling the new budgets. It is never ending.

Got a higher paying job? Awesome, because your horse put its leg through a fence and needs stitches (true story from Christmas Day at 4:30pm 2017).

Opened a savings account? Stop kidding yourself and skip the sad truth of putting the money in just to take it back out. Just send the money straight to the tack store for the new custom saddle.

Bonus? Better call the chiropractor for the horse and someone to clip your Yak of a pony.

It. Never. Ends.

Now my savings account sits at $0.02.

But my recent promotion means they have new space to expand into!

4) Not one of my horses have a job. I have 3 horses and I am not able to ride one!

Monty was my eventer but was retired at 8 after years of on and off soundness issues. Turns out my future superstar has severe osteoarthritis in his spine. My mini, Oreo, was bought as his companion for shows and now is living his best life as a feral retired pony!

And my new born dream foal is living his best life in baby heaven!

Hopefully one day baby Loki will be my eventing super star otherwise I am collecting “broken” horses!

5) Vacations? Weekends away?

Old vacationing pics will have to do!

Vacations are unknown words to the Equestrian! Equestrians are too broke for vacations and weekends are for horse shows!

My poor husband and I have a cottage we rarely use because he can’t drag me away from the horses long enough!

Why go out of town when you can go to horse shows?

Regardless….

For all the stress, money and time horses cost.

For the ascinine vet bills that build up on your secret credit card.

The heartbreak over an 8 year old with so much potential having to be retired.

The constant worry over temperature and if your horse is too hot or too cold.

Wondering if you are doing all the things right and helping your horse live their best life.

Wearing clothes with holes in them so you can put the money into board at the best facility you can find (and the sleepless nights finding it).

For the missed vacations, weekends in the barn instead of on a beach and the partners that wonder wtf they got themselves into.

For all the craziness….

I wouldn’t change a thing.

Owning a horse is expensive. More expensive than your cat or dog. Or 10 cats and dogs. And sometimes they don’t pay attention to you ( I guess sort of like a big cat)….

Eff off lady, I only love my mom.

But is it ever worth it.

Once you are horse girl you will die a horse girl.

It is like a virus that pumps through your veins.

And you will lay down your last penny, your last breath, for your horse.

I would legitimately do sketchy things to make sure my horses only had the best. Selling organs in Mexico is a viable option, right?

So while we may be a bit crazy, and insanity ensues on the reg, it is worth every second and I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

Xo

Ashley