Solcana blog

My Story: Solcana Athlete Jane Sumner

I joined Solcana in April 2017, when I was twelve weeks pregnant. If you’ve ever been pregnant, known anyone who was pregnant, or somehow gotten sucked up in the (awful) social conversation surrounding pregnancy, you probably know two things. First, you’re not supposed to try new physical activities because you might hurt yourself or the fetus. Second, lots of people have Opinions -- Strong ones! Mostly very negative ones! The kinds strangers tell you when you didn’t ask and don’t care! -- about women who work out while they’re pregnant. And this is the story of why I did it anyway. I’d lived a mostly sedentary life growing up, but started running my last year of college, and became committed to it. I read about it, spent money on it, and scheduled my life in part around it. In graduate school, I credited daily running and weekly long runs with helping keep my depression and anxiety largely at bay (although the medication helped too). I ran a few marathons. I wasn’t strong, and I wasn’t fast, but I was persistent. I could grind out a half-marathon with no actual training. It was a pretty good existence. But when I moved to Minneapolis for work in the summer of 2016, everything changed. I had trouble balancing running with the demands of my new job. My depression and anxiety crept back in. The winter weather provided a good excuse to obey my anxiety and not leave my apartment except to go to work. I sometimes worked out in the apartment gym. Some squats here. Some running there. Doing things the internet told me to do with kettlebells, mostly badly. Then, in February of 2017, I found out I was pregnant. Now, in a lot of ways, when you’re pregnant everyone wants to remind you that your body isn’t just yours anymore. And mostly this is used to political ends I oppose. And mostly this rhetoric makes me really mad. But I also realized that my health and lifestyle weren’t just about me anymore. I needed to be healthy for my kid. I needed to grow a healthy baby. While my brain has always been bad about caring about my own well-being, it was easier to care about my future child. It wasn’t just about me anymore. I decided I needed structure and guidance. I needed to join a gym. You won’t be surprised to learn that “prenatal CrossFit” is, according to Google, not A Thing. I ended up coming to Solcana because my friend Elizabeth posted on Facebook that a coach (Coach Ariel) had brought her baby to powerlifting. I figured that meant at least one person knew how to work out while pregnant. After I joined, I cleared it with my OBGYN, who was very supportive of my fitness plans. (“Just don’t do anything that risks abdominal trauma,” she said. “It’s not a good time to start playing rugby.”) I spent my first class trying not to vomit. My memories of the actual workout are hazy -- there were sit-ups and medicine balls -- but what stuck with me was that I sucked and everyone was extremely supportive anyway. As the kid who was bullied in gym class from first grade until I realized they couldn’t make me take gym anymore, this was mind-blowing. Coach Kaitlin was my partner for the metcon, and I remember thinking they were the kindest human I had ever met for sticking with me the whole time and not being disappointed to be paired with did everyone wrong, and slowly. I kept with it. I got better. I started coming 3-4 times a week. I lifted progressively heavier things. My pregnancy progressed. I felt better, had more energy, and my depression and anxiety started to lift. Coaches scaled all the workouts as I became increasingly constrained by the human in my uterus. First, no burpees, situps, or rowing. Then no Olympic lifts. Then no hanging from a bar. By the end of my third trimester, I was sometimes doing entirely different workouts than everyone else. But I was still there. The week before my due date, I tried to run and jump-rope the baby out. (Didn’t work.) I deadlifted on my due date. Two days later I was induced. Two days after that, my son was born via C-section. 6lbs 12 ozs of perfectly healthy baby. Since I had a C-section, for six weeks I wasn’t allowed to lift more than fifteen pounds, do any cardio, or use my core. Coach Hannah wrote me C-section-friendly programming, and 2-3 weeks after my kid was born, he was laying on a blanket on the floor during Open Gym, watched over by Babysitter Petey, while I worked out and recovered. After I was cleared for normal activity, I was back in the 11:30 class. Continuing to attend Solcana and focusing on functional fitness has been the best thing I’ve done for my parenting, too -- having an infant is mostly doing a bunch of Turkish get-ups, over and over, and chasing my kid in a bear crawl is, apparently, hilarious. Now that my son is running everywhere, I am continually grateful that I can chase him, pick him up, throw him, and play with him on the floor. Solcana is helping me to be the parent I want to be.

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November Athletes of the Month

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Welcome to November, and congratulations to this month's Athletes of the Month, Beth Hilliard and Krystal Harper! Beth is thoughtful, kind, empathetic and endlessly loving toward other people. She has so much heart to give and she is not stingy about it. She moved here from Arkansas (I am almost positive), and immediately joined the gym because she knew she wanted to keep this style of...


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NIGHTMARE ON MY STREET

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NIGHTMARE ON MY STREET By: Lauren Anderson Forgive me if I sound a little different today, but my entire reality has been altered, and I don't know what's what anymore. You know, no bigs. Also, I miiiight sound different because I just had 1,000 birds of prey fly outta my mouth. Oop! And almost forgot! I've been running for my life down dark alleyways for the past three nights. “What's...


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TOO MUCH VERSUS NOT ENOUGH

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TOO MUCH VERSUS NOT ENOUGH By: Lauren Anderson About a month or so ago I was at the gym, and we were working on back squats. I don't know if it was the day or what, but it was one of those workouts where I was just happy I made it there at all. I found myself really taking it kinda easy. It felt good to be there...


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YOU CAN'T RUSH A BUTTERFLY OR A BEAUTIFUL DEATH

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YOU CAN'T RUSH A BUTTERFLY OR A BEAUTIFUL DEATH By: Lauren Anderson Last week my grandmother passed away. And yesterday was her funeral. The day was as hard as you can imagine, but then the sun came out. And I couldn't help but think, “This is a beautiful day. Grandma would've liked this.” The family was sad, and we will miss her dearly, but it also felt so...


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Solcana-bili-Buddies!

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Hi Homies! Emma Vasseur here to introduce a super fun, super cool idea to help you reach your goals and make meaningful changes happen in your life: SOLCANA-BILI-BUDDIES!   Solcana - a space full of inspiration, growth, change, strength, transformation,... Accountability - an essential element to making change happen, as we are social creatures afterall Buddies - Solcana’s badass, compassionate, caring, connected community!   Combine these three components and you have a...


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DRY RICE ON THE FLOOR

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DRY RICE ON THE FLOOR By: Lauren Anderson My older sister is an excellent driver. She was that classic teenager that went and took her driving test on her 16th birthday and passed on the first try. And it didn't take long before she had her own car, much to our mom's trepidation. There was no, “Can I borrow the car?” from my sister. Oh no no. Besides, my...


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October Athletes of the Month

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It's the most wonderful time of the year! We love fall, cool breezes, colorful leaves, and our amazing athletes. Congratulations to our October Athletes of the Month, Andrea Shaker and Shannon Kerr! Andrea "Dre" Shaker Written by coach Morgen Dre has been doing CrossFit for many years, and wound up walking through our doors in January of this year, looking to switch it up. What I notice about...


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IF YOU'RE FEELING NERVOUS

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IF YOU'RE FEELING NERVOUS By: Lauren Anderson Two days ago I woke up with a mouth full of blood. Do I have your attention? If I ever write a mystery novel... I'm yoinking that line from this blog and using it again! Yup. My alarm went off at the same respectable time it always does for a person that works mostly at night-- and when I turned over to put...


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My Story: Solcana Athlete Jonathan Popko

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For years, I would compile an empowering playlist on my iPhone, double-knot my shoes, and embark on a solitary evening jog. Running was always my primary method of exercise. I relished exploring new frontiers outdoors, discovering new running paths and learning the intricacies of each hill. Running was my method for escaping from my thoughts and life stressors, losing myself in the verdant green of...


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CHANGE HIT ME LIKE A MACRO TRUCK

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CHANGE HIT ME LIKE A MACRO TRUCK By: Lauren Anderson Lately I've been feeling stuck. Stagnant. Wanting that extra something to happen or occur or manifest. Ya know? I think the beginning of fall is always ripe for feelings like this. It's a transitional season, much like spring, so inevitably it also feels like the perfect time for something to CHANGE. Because the weather is, so I might...


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CROWN ON THE GROUND

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CROWN ON THE GROUND By: Lauren Anderson Yesterday I was eating lunch and reading an article that came out in an old New Yorker about Tiffany Haddish, when I heard a CRACK, and out plopped the crown of my tooth silently onto the floor. Just like that. I wasn't even eating anything crazy either. Just some leftover Lo Mien from the night before. Ya know, like you you do...


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More on the Fall Challenge

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The fall challenge starts testing next week! I wanted to post a few quick updates so you knew what to expect. First, A BONUS. A handful of eager athletes asked me last week, "where is the metcon?" Apparently, these folks loooooooved them some beep test (last year's fall challenge metcon), and were hoping for something like that again. Well, I am happy to oblige! A reminder...


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Fall Challenge 2018 (and fresh new gear!)

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It is time for the annual Solcana Fall Challenge! The Fall Challenge is a really awesome opportunity to crush some goals, reinvest in your fitness and put your skills to the test. It’s meant for everyone, all levels of experience, from brand new athletes to long-haul Solcanauts. This year our Fall Challenge is the combined total of: Deadlift + Snatch + Shoulder Press I am calling this...


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MULCH MUSCLE

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MULCH MUSCLE By: Lauren Anderson Labor Day weekend for me is a time to hang out and have a good time, but I always like to throw in a little bit of “work” for balance. I mean, if nothing else it is my small way of honoring all the labor workers that make the world go round. But let's not get too far up my own butt here....


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September Athletes of the Month

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Happy September! I hope you've gotten the most out of this Minnesota summer, and are ready to dive into fall because we have soooo many exciting things planned for you this month! First of all, allow me to announce our September Athletes of the Month: Daphne Sidor and Erik Nielsen!   Daphne Sidor has been with us just over a year, and in that time has revealed...


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HELLO FEAR, I LIVE HERE NOW

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HELLO FEAR, I LIVE HERE NOW By: Lauren Anderson In my group of friends, I am rather notorious for asking “What if” questions. Like, “What if every time you walked up the stairs a part of your body turned purple? But only for 24 hours.” Or “What if when you peeled back the skin on my arm, you found out I was made entirely of Rice Crispy treats?”...


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BIG, EASY, UNLIKELY INSPIRATION

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BIG, EASY, UNLIKELY INSPIRATION By: Lauren Anderson Inspiration can come from the most unlikely places. I've even got an embarrassing example for you. This weekend I was undone by a terrible case of food poisoning. It was...unfortunate. Luckily I made it through the worst, but Sunday left me recovering and trying to keep crackers down. I kept falling in and out of sleep all day, exhausted from dehydration...


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Collection for Homeless Folks in Our Neighborhood

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Currently Minneapolis is dealing with a health crisis right in our own Solcana neighborhood, and we have the opportunity to help. Close to Solcana, on the intersection of Cedar and Hiawatha is a very large and growing homeless encampment made up of mostly American Indian folks who are currently unable to access the resources they need. This encampment has been here for years, but recently...


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Fall Macro Challenge

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We’re willing to bet most Solcana members know the “what” part of the equation when it comes to a healthy eating pattern. But, like many others, they might lack an understanding of “how much” of that healthy food is enough to support their goals. If you’ve got goals for your health, body composition or athletic performance, it’s important to get more precise about that side...


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ICE BATH FOR THE SOUL

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ICE BATH FOR THE SOUL. By: Lauren Anderson   It's no surprise that I run hot. I know I've probably talked about it like, a bajillion times. But I'm not kidding. Just under my skin, I feel like the inside of a dragon's mouth. Roiling and turning, panting and churning, just waiting for the next fire to erupt. Which is not to say that I'm always angry or upset, or...


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