Friday, September 23, 2011

Monumental Moment

This year has been one to remember in every aspect of my life! I have had many blessings and in some cases situations that have put doubt in my mind. But sitting here writing this blog entry I can’t seem to feel how blessed I am for all the moments that have taken place in the past few months.
My personal life has been amazing! I married my best friend October 30,2010 and we are soon approaching our one year anniversary! WOW! Time has flown by when you are married to the man of your dreams! We bought our house and it has become a home filled with love and laughter. My husband has accomplished the first step of getting a job he has been trying to receive for many years now. His drive, continuous passion, and faith that he would get this job even after receiving disappointment before has been an example to what hard work really looks like and what it means to BELIEVE! These next few months will be a journey for both of us, but I know he can do it and I’m excited to see him accomplish his dream!

This past few months as an athlete have also been one I will NEVER FORGET! What a whirlwind of events it seems like! I have accomplished many goals that I only dreamt about accomplishing. Thinking about it now I can’t believe that I have accomplished this much and I’m only 24 years old. I have been competing in both Olympic lifting and crossfit competitions this past year and I have learned a lot about myself as an athlete and what I want to accomplish. Olympic lifting is something I have always had in my life weather it was preparing for an upcoming volleyball season at my university or most recently the national championship. This past year Olympic lifting has treated me well and with the help of Bob Takano and the Phat Elvis weightlifting team I accomplished my goal of getting to the national championship where I received a silver medal. How cool is that?? I mean I accomplish lifts I use to think were impossible and that I could never do. After months and months of hard and physically testing training I accomplished that goal. Bob Takano is man full of knowledge about Olympic weightlifting, coaching, and life. He has given me a tool I will always be thankful for and I thank God every day for putting him and the rest of the team in my life.

During the same time of training for nationals I was also training to achieve my goal of getting on the podium at regionals and moving onto the Crossfit Games. You are probably asking yourself…How the HELL did I do both sports at the same time. Well, to be honest….I just did and with the belief in myself I did both! It was very hard and trying at times and sometimes I would feel just like giving up! But with the support of my husband, family, and friends I accomplish both the nationals and going to the crossfit games! WAHOO!!!!!
The games are something I thank God for everyday and crossfit has impacted my life in more ways than one! It has given me the confidence that anything is possible, it has helped my husband and I live a healthy lifestyle, it has given us friends that we are so thankful for having, it has given me other female athletes to look up to, and most importantly it has helped me to BELIEVE IN MYSELF!!!

The crossfit games were an experience I will never forget and something I am so thankful for! It probably was the hardest thing for me mentally EVER! It was physically demanding, but for me it was more mentally demanding then anything I have ever experienced. The days leading up the games were non-stop and were filled of athlete meetings, grocery shopping (yes lots of it!), multiple swim tests, trying to stay on a somewhat normal schedule, and at the same time trying to rest and stay focused. I knew what my strengths and weaknesses were going into the Games and I now have coaches that are helping me with my weakness. Every day I think about the workouts and movements that gave me a hard time and that is what is pushing me to become a better crossfit athlete. But I also think about the good moments I had! For example, I think about how I just made that last clean and jerk in the rope climb WOD and I heard the stadium ROAR and go insane! That is a moment I will NEVER forget as long as I live. That moment is what I feed off and is something that makes me love the crossfit community so much! The fans, the athletes, and my VCF family are the people that make crossfit so worthwhile! They are the ones that have helped me get through the good and bad times!

Learning about myself and what I want to accomplish as an athlete is also something I have been dealing with these past few months as well. Many know me as the Olympic weightlifter that does crossfit and that is something I LOVE! It shows other women that being strong is possible and lifting weights that you thought you couldn’t do can become possible with hard work and the belief that you can do it! My goal as a lifter was to take my talent to the highest level possible and that means the Olympics. Sitting here it is hard for me to say that it just won’t happen this time around…… It is hard to tell people that because I do not want to disappoint people and give them the impression I have given up. I haven’t and wont! The selection process is a lot harder than people are aware of and it is more than just lifting heavy weight! If you really want to see how the selection process works for the 2012 Olympic Games Selection go to the following website, You may be thinking…she has given up. Well, I’m sorry to say you are wrong!

I have talked to a number of my mentors, my fellow athletes, and most importantly my family and they all say the same thing, “Lindsey follow your heart and do what you think is best!” I have not given up and trust me I don’t give up very easily at things in life! I’m still really young! I’m only 24 years old and I have YEARS to come back to lifting and accomplish this goal! I’m still lifting three times a week, maybe not at the same volume! But you better believe that I can still out lift a lot of people! And I’m up to a max lift challenge any day 
But with this realization comes a positive! As mentioned before I have been dedicating a lot of time to my crossfit skills and most importantly my gymnastic skills! God knows that is my weakness! The hunger I have to become a better crossfitter is unexplainable and is something is fueling my fire every day! I love the feeling of having another challenge and when I overcome that challenge I prepare for the next one! The next few months will be filled with great moments and probably some not so great moments, but I know that with each moment will come a learning experience that will help me become a better athlete.

My VCF girls are pushing me every day and are showing me what it takes to be the best. My husband lets me know when I need to rest and when I need to push myself harder. My coaches are the ones who believe in me and are helping me refine my skills. And my family is a consent support system that gives me love that helps me to continue on the path to success. And my fans, that is weird to say because I never thought I would have fans… are the ones to help me realize what an individual can do for others. I always get facebook messages or comments that say “Lindsey you are an inspiration and I look up to you!” Wow! What a humbling set of words! But you guys are the ones that inspire me to keep going when the possible seems impossible and give you me a sense of pride that is unexplainable! I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for that! And always remember that if you believe a monumental moment will happen in your life, you have already the first step in accomplishing this dream!

WOW!!! What a great past few months! Sitting here I already have butterflies in my stomach thinking about the upcoming crossfit season and I’m so excited to see what the future holds for every aspect of my life! And please remember to always BELIEVE that you can accomplish your dreams if you have the mindset it will happen, because I believe in all of you and I know you can do it 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

You Were Born this Way
Well I haven’t really posted anything for awhile and there is this constant topic that has been appearing on facebook, the songs that I hear on the radio, and something I hear everyday being in a weight room.

Being comfortable with the way you look is very important to women and let’s face it to men as well. The way we “think” we should look is often shaped by media, fashion, sports, our friends, or by a role model. I have always been “short” and built. Ever since I was young I was always the little girl that had muscles. Going through middle school and high school I can remember wanting to be thin and hating the fact that I had bigger legs then all of the other girls. But once I got into college something clicked in my head. I embrace my strong muscular legs because I knew that gave me the vertical jump that a lot of the other girls were lacking. Now that I am a competitive crossfitter and Olympic lifter my whole self image has change COMPLETELY!

This last couple of months I have been lifting A LOT MORE WEIGHT and squatting everyday or every other day! Many of my friends have heard me talking about this lately! Let’s get this straight…I’m not complaining because I have gain confidence with my lifts because I am a lot stronger and achieving lifts I never thought about achieving, but lifting at a higher percentage and squatting on a daily basis can put some muscle on a girl, about 9lbs to be exact. When first getting on the scale I would think HOLY SHIT..I WEIGH WHAT???? Now, I know muscle and water weigh more than fat and I with my education background I know what is happening to my body, but a girl can get stuck on a number. Jeans are nearly impossible to find for an athletic girl like myself, I either have to go up a size and get the waist taken in or just hope my jeans will stretch in the quadriceps area and don’t even get me started on sports bars! Anyways, what I am trying to get at is that women have a misconception about what we are suppose to look like. Obviously, everyone has a goal of what they “want” to look like, but what I want to look like has change COMPLETELY!!!!

Before I started crossfit and competitively Olympic lifting I would describe myself as a skinny muscular girl. What do I mean by this? I was athletic, was doing sports specific lifts, but I was never built like I am now. After the first six months of crossfit I had dropped about 6 pounds, starting to see definition I never saw before, and for the first time in my life became comfortable with my body. The further I got into crossfit the stronger I got. My body has drastically changed from the time I first started crossfit, oly-lifting, and having a paleo diet.

I think the best phrase I have heard about being both strong and beautiful is said by Rebecca Voigt when she came up with the phrase, “strong is beautiful.” What I think is beautiful is a strong and confident women. And that is what crossfit and Olympic lifting have helped me to become. I no longer want to look frail and thin, but instead I am more concerned about how strong I feel and if I have gain muscle! As my friend Kim Wong says,“Before crossfit, I was skinny... now, I’m getting damn beefy... who wouldn't want that?”

Don’t get me wrong I’m still human and there are days were I am not comfortable with my body and I feel self conscious. But what I have come to find is that with how strong I become physically the strength of my self-image becomes stronger as well. With putting 9lbs of muscle on because of my weight training I at first was pissed because of the number I saw on the scale, but when sitting down and really thinking about it I thought to myself, “I love this feeling of being strong and also the feeling I get when I complete a lift or movement because of my strength gain!”Instead of being mad of gaining weight..I get pissed when I drop weight! Ha..imagine that! This feeling of being comfortable with myself did not happen overnight and it is an ongoing journey, but boy do I have the confidence in my image I only dreamt about before starting crossfit and Olympic lifting.

So what is the point of this post! Well, first I would like to tell all of you reading this that you are all beautiful in your own individual ways. Whither you got a ghetto booty, strong muscular legs, your short or tall, you have big traps, your calves are muscular, you can’t fit into jeans because of your legs, your sport bars are tight because of your strong and defined back, or whatever quality you may feel self conscious about you are ALL STRONG AND BEAUTIFUL. Embrace your muscles and your differences because everyone has something different to offer this world.

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Sister, A Bestfriend

My sister Ashley and I have always been best friends since we were little girls. We would play little mermaid while running around my parents house, we did swim club together, we played volleyball on the same volleyball club team and for one year in college. I was the little sister that wouldn't leave her big sisters side and she always took me every where. She has been one of my biggest supporters and has always believed in me. This morning I logged into facebook and she had posted the poem below on my wall. I immediately started to cry because it made me so happy and because it gave me the inspiration I needed for a meet I have tomorrow. She wrote this poem herself and I think that any crossfit girl can appreciate this!

She’s a girl that loves pink and Fall colors.

She loves getting flowers from my loved ones

She loves putting on makeup and getting dressed up

She loves treating herself to a good movie or a manicure...But she is also a girl who isn’t afraid to get dirty...

She admires her black and blue bruises from burpees

She loves her callused hands from lifting the barbells

She can almost lift twice her weight

She proud of her Muscle Up Scars and wears them like a medal

She loves the feeling of her heart beat rising

She loves pushing herself to the limit

She is a girl, an Olympic Lifter, and Crossfitter

She is Lindsey Valenzuela

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Paleo Mexican Salad

A few months ago I was at home and thinking about what to make for dinner! I looked in the frig and there was ground beef, shredded cabbage, salsa, avocado, onion, and El Pato jalapeno salsa! So I came up with a perfect meal with these simple ingredients and made a Paleo taco salad! It only takes about 20 minutes to make and it is our favorite go to meal! I actually made this for Valentine’s Day because it is Arsenio’s favorite meal and I had a late lift that night.

  • 2lbs of Organic Ground Beef (you can substitute ground turkey or chicken)
  • 1/2 Cup Diced Onion
  • 1 can EL Pato jalapeno Salsa
  • Bag of Shredded Cabbage
  • 1 Avocado

*** We buy our meat from Costco because it is inexpensive for ground beef and comes in a three pack which will last us about a week or so. The El Pato Salsa only has 1g of sugar and this isn’t bad at all for a salsa. I also use trader Joes brand of salsa because of the price and also because the sugar content is super low as well.

1. Put ground beef and diced onion in large pan and cook on stove
2. When meat looks close to being done add in the El Pato jalapeno salsa so the meat picks up some of the flavor. Once meat looks cooked you can take it off the stove.
3. Drain the extra oil/water that naturally comes out from cooking ground meat.
4. Put a good amount of shredded cabbage on a plate
5. Add meat to the top of cabbage
6. Add half of the avocado on top of beef and put about half a cup of salsa on top as well!

AND YOUR DONE!!!! Paleo does not have to be that complicated and takes less them 30 minutes to make. I made this meal for Valentine's day because it is one of Arsenio's favorite meals and I also had a late lift that night! He took the left overs for lunch the next day!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


I have been an athlete my whole life...Since I was little my mom and dad had me participate in everything whether it was gymnastics, swimming, basketball, jazz dance, or volleyball. You name the sport and I participated. I have had many different experiences as an athlete, some awesome moments and some not so awesome moments. But with each experience I learned something about myself.

As a young athlete I was always surrounded by older kids because I refused to leave my older sisters side. I watched my sister and the older kids wanting to be like them one day and prayed I would be just as good as them. As a kid school was always difficult with my learning disability and sports was something I excelled in. Sports have and still are a way of letting go for me and help me realize that I can do anything as long as I believe in myself.

My main sport was volleyball and I continued playing it throughout my college career. During college Kellee Roesel a coach that I look up to till this day came up with the phrase "believe." She wanted us to believe in ourselves, our teammates, and our goals for that season. This affirmation helped me gain the confidence that I had lost from a prior coach, helped my teammates and I to never lose hope, and helped me to accomplish things I only dreamt about!

After the last game I knew I wasn't done being an athlete and I picked up my barbell and started competing in Olympic lifting. I had been doing oly-lifting for awhile at that point for sport specific reasons, but now I wanted to go heavier and focus on form. Along the way I started to miss the high intensity moments that volleyball gave me, so I started crossfitting!

This last two years have been amazing for me both as an athlete and personally. I married the man of my dreams this past October and we have a wonderful home together now. I work at a local middle school/high school as the assistant strength coach. I have qualified for the nationals in June and have made lifts and totals I only dreamt about three years ago. Have mastered crossfit skills that would have never crossed my mind before starting crossfit and have been placing in the top five in crossfit events. I get through each lift and crossfit workout by believing I can accomplish the task at hand! I might not be able to accomplish it that moment, that week, that month, or even that year but I know if I believe in myself I KNOW I WILL DO IT.

Knowing and believing are two similar qualities in my eyes because if you believe you can do something then you know you are capable of ANYTHING! There are some days that I am in the bottom of a clean and I think to myself, "fuck this is heavy I don’t think I can do this!" But that is when the most powerful word comes to mind "BELIEVE." Believing in myself and my talents has and will not always be easy but believing I can accomplish my dreams will help me ACHIEVE THEM.

This quality of believing is contagious! Participating in crossfit has helped me to gain friendships with some of the most amazing women, both athletically and as individuals. Ladies, you know who you are have become part of my backbone in helping me believe in myself as an athlete and it helps me get through movements I sometimes do not think I can do. My husband Arsenio always notices when my confidence is low and reminds me to never give up and believe in what I am trying to accomplish.

I am not saying that in order to make a 100kilo lift all I do is believe. Of course I practice my lifts every day and stick to my training regime on a daily basis, but to me an athlete can have all the talent in the world, but if they do not believe in themselves and what they are trying to accomplish their talent will only take them so far.

So this brings me to my blog! Writing this blog has been going through my head for some time now and I have finally worked up the courage to write about what keeps me going as an athlete and as a person. Whether it is daily events, paleo recipes, or something that strikes me as interesting. Ultimately, my goal is to help people realize that they can do anything they set their heart and mind to; they just need to BELIEVE they can!!!!!!