Why Your Endocrine System Needs Regular Exercise


The endocrine system consists of glands that release the chemicals and hormones that control physiological functions in the body. Some of those glands have a direct response to exercise and include the pituitary gland, the thyroid gland, the adrenal gland, and the pancreas. Chemical messengers released by these glands play a key role in making sure your body works the way it should. Let’s just scratch the surface and mention some of the most important and meaningful impacts that hormones play during exercise.

The Pituitary Gland:  releases human growth hormone which tells the body to increase bone, muscle and tissue production. Bouts of heavy weightlifting will stimulate the release of luteinizing hormone from your pituitary gland, which triggers testosterone production. (Testosterone increases metabolism. WIN.)  It also releases endorphins which block your sensitivity to pain and can reduce tension or anxiety and leave you feeling like a rockstar.

The Thyroid Gland: sends out hormones that regulate the body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure. Intense bursts of training stimulate the release of thyroxine from your thyroid gland which also speeds up metabolism.

The Adrenal Gland: releases cortisol into the bloodstream which acts as an anti-inflammatory agent. It also turns stored carbohydrates into energy.

The Pancreas: secretes insulin, which regulates glucose and transports it to the muscles and tissues that use glucose for energy.

As you age, you may notice a decrease in your endocrine functions and output. Regular exercise (5 days a week) can help keep these systems pumping and slow the aging process. It can also decrease your risk for certain diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, obesity and cancer.

So eat clean, pet your dog, kiss your kids, high-five your coworkers and high-tail it to the gym regularly. Your body will thank you daily: today, in 1 yr, in 5 yrs and in 20 yrs.  Keep it up.

Why Your Coach Is A Joy Addict

MM & Vania.jpg

Hi. My name is Coach, and I’m an addict. A joy addict.

The smiles.

The hugs.

The high fives.

The chest-bumps.

The jokes and trash talking.

The laughs.

The screams of excitement.

We got into coaching to help people. We remain coaches for years because we’re addicted to helping people. The look of excitement on an athlete’s face when they had a PR, perform a skill for the first time, or have an “ah-ha” moment is the ultimate satisfaction.

Challenging you to be the best version of yourself every day is our main objective here at Defiant. We believe you are full of greatness. Our job is to help you tap into that greatness and let it out. We are lucky to be a witness to these beautiful moments day in and day out.

Offering personal happiness through coaching is absolutely addictive. We can’t help ourselves. We love it. We live for it. We show up every day with a great attitude because of it. We leave in a sort of joy-drunk state that keeps us happy and fulfilled, allowing us to give back to the universe and our athletes what they so generously offered us in the first place.

Every day can’t be a PR. But we are equally as overjoyed with the small wins. Seeing our athletes showing up for class with a big smile on their face and a positive attitude is enough of the joy-crack we need to get our fix.



How To Continue Your Workouts With An Injury


Having an minor injury or tweak is no excuse to sit at home, binge-watching Netflix and overdosing on chocolates. As fun as that sounds…..Your training hasn’t stopped, it’s just taken a slight detour.

When you work out at Defiant, you’re lucky to be able to work with a coach in every class. The focus of your coach is to walk you and guide you through your workouts. That role still applies even when you have an injury. In fact, this is when you need to guidance of your coach the most. (NOTE: we in no way condone working out with serious injuries. This article is addressing minor injuries and tweaked areas. Don’t make it weird.)

Think of all the people out there on their fitness journey who have the misfortune of not having a coach. No one to consult. No one to make recommendations for them. No one who cares about them. How much does that suck???

Add an injury to that lonely, coach-less, one-man-show of fitness, and what have you got? Stiff muscles, a chocolate-stained sofa and an extra 10 pounds. No thanks. I think I’ll go talk to my coach now.

When one of our athletes has an injury or tweaked area, we encourage them to stick to their normal workout schedule. One of the biggest advantages of CrossFit is the wide variety of movements and combinations of skills that yield a killer training routine. This is the beauty of modifications.

Our talented coaches are here to help athletes modify their workouts on a daily basis as part of their training. But for an athlete with a tweak, we want to make sure they get the intended stimulus of the high intensity workout (just like everybody else) while staying off the tweaked area entirely by offering alternative movements that can be performed safely. So congrats, you get the same privilege of falling to the floor in a hot, sweaty mess too. You’re just going to do it differently for awhile.

So how do you look on the bright side when you have to heal for weeks and it feels like an eternity?

There’s no break in your training routine.

Your training won’t suffer a breakdown.

An increase in blood flow helps to deliver a steady stream of fresh nutrients, oxygen and white blood cells the injured area for faster healing.

You have to be mindful of your movements.

It’s a chance to work your weaknesses.

You’ll come out of it stronger.

You look like a total badass in front of your friends because you’ve given zero excuses.

It’s amazing what you’ll learn about yourself given the opportunity to focus on specific areas or movements and even weaknesses. You can still do more than most. Take a breath and be grateful. High fives anyone?

Why Defiant Is The Happy Gym

Jason smiles cropped.jpg

Good coaching? You bet your sweet peach it is. But more than that....


When you walk into our gym, one of the first things you’ll see is a little loveseat and two chairs. This is our Defiant Hangout. It’s not a part of the workout area and may even seem a little out of place but it’s a critical part of our gym because that’s where everyone hangs out before and after their workouts.

We have people who will sometimes hang out at the gym so long, that the coach has to kick them out at the end of the night. “You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here”. And we LOVE IT.

We all have several different types of friends here. The ones you share your Netflix binges with and why Jon Snow is so dreamy. The ones you talk very serious sports with. The ones you can talk to about the amazing adventures of raising kids and how gross they can be. The ones you ride Harleys with. The ones who you strictly and most mandatorily talk BS and smack with.  The ones you talk about nutrition and food with and guiltily confess about that cupcake you ate at the birthday party. The ones you have deep and meaningful conversations with. And then everyone else you can chat and be yourself with who are always up for a good belly laugh or a dirty joke.

I believe people vibrate at a certain frequency. And when you go out into the world, you attract other people who vibrate at the same frequency as you. At Defiant, we work to create a fun and encouraging environment that allows people to find each other. Sure, we do it through heavy weights, tough workouts, sweating ourselves silly, grunting, grinding and even barking. But the high-fives, hugs and bonding experiences have left many people getting more than just a workout.

The most fun part is talking about it for an hour afterwards. At least an hour. Sometimes days. And yes, even years. 

So text your friends and set a date to meet at the bar. Our Defiant bar.

See you there!

Is Your Relationship With Food A Healthy One?

salad bowl.JPG

We are lucky enough to not have to hunt, kill and cook our own food. In fact, food is everywhere. So much so, that we see it as less necessary for survival and more for entertainment. 

Your body is much like your car. It can be very powerful or it can just cruise along, but either way, you need it to perform well to get you where you need to go in life. If you were to start diluting the gasoline you put in your car with water or cooking oil, you would start to see a breakdown. This now requires endless trips to the mechanic and loads of money you could have spent on more productive things.

Your body is very similar. When you start fueling it with non-essential food (junk) your body has to work harder to process it. This taxes your organs and creates toxins which leads to disease and illness. Your body can’t function properly. This now requires endless trips to the doctor and loads of money you could have spent on more productive things.

If your car breaks down, you can always get another one. If your body breaks down, well…..

Try to see the food you eat as your body’s essential fuel. It’s easy to go for convenience and taste but at what cost? At every meal or snack ask yourself, is this essential fuel or entertainment?

Our V10 Nutrition philosophy is simple: Eat vegetables in abundance, get adequate amounts of protein and carbs, and limit fats.

Come to Peace With Your Performance

Dball & clips.jpg

People compare themselves to others.

It’s our nature. We can’t help ourselves. We look at others and think, “He’s got a better job than me,” “She’s not as smart as I am,” or “Her shoes are more expensive than mine.”

Sometimes this can work in our favor: we see something we want to aspire to and then we work for it until we achieve it. Win. But sometimes, this works against us completely. Especially in the gym.

“I want abs like that”

“I wish I could be strong like that guy”

“I’ll never be as good as her”

STOP. RIGHT. THERE. What good does that kind of talk do for you? Absolutely nothing. You’re focusing on the WRONG things.

Here’s an example. In the CrossFit Open this year, my performance was not as great as it’s been in the past. I went into it knowing that I probably wouldn’t place as high as years before. And I was perfectly okay with it. I watched other women getting PRs, lifting heavy, crushing times, beating me all day long and stealing my lunch money. I could have easily started a one-woman, utterly boring, lifeless, snoozer of a pity party. I could have stupidly beat myself up over it.

But I didn’t. Why?

Because I knew that all of things that they were doing and all of the things that they were capable of, had NOTHING to do with ME. I do what I do every day and I’m at peace with it. Good or bad. I’m happy that I can do the things that I can do. I still work my weaknesses but don’t throw myself out of a window every time I don’t do well. I gotta do me. And it’s good enough.

I always tell myself “give what you can today and be grateful”.  This is how I find my peace. Mind you, this is not a free pass to be lazy and not work hard. That’s not the Defiant way.  It’s simply a get out of jail free card when you start judging yourself.

One side effect that comes with this kind of peace is the ability to celebrate the wins of others sincerely. Instead of feeling bummed about my own performance, I had the wonderful experience of being truly happy for those that did well. I was able to give a positive energy to those around me instead of creating a soul-sucking negative black hole of energy that brings everyone else down. (Who invited THAT girl? Ugh)

I’ll make no excuses. I do what I do and it’s good enough for me. I’m able to fully enjoy every workout for myself. I soak up all the amazing energy and personalities that I choose to surround myself with everyday at Defiant.   

Here, the focus is on you- what YOU are doing, what YOU are capable of, where YOU are going.

What anybody else does, has nothing to do with YOU.

Be you. Be happy. Rejoice. You are amazing.

~ Jenn



Why Women NEED To Be Lifting Weights Regularly

weight plates.jpg

Why Women Should Lift Heavy

Lifting weights has some surprising advantages that you won’t get from cardio alone. Specifically for women, we should be lifting heavy and often.

It can help you to see a difference in your strength, muscle tone, and even life expectancy as you age.

Here’s why it’s especially important for women to be on the barbell regularly:

1. Lower your risk for osteoporosis: Women are far more likely than men to develop osteoporosis later in life. When a muscle contracts under load, those muscles tug on your arm's bones. The cells within those bones react by creating new bone cells, making your bones become stronger and more dense.

2. It can relieve joint issues. Stronger muscles help hold your joints in position allowing for better movement.

3. The more often you lift, the more muscle tone you’ll create. That’s the whole point, right ladies?!?! 

4. You’ll raise your metabolism and blast more fat. Muscle burns more calories and adding a bit more of this sexy stuff will rev your metabolism to allow you to burn more calories daily. Add this into your weight loss plan.

5. Improve your posture as you age. When you get older, your posture tends to round forward. A strong lower back, hamstrings, glutes and trapezius will help keep you in a more upright position.

6. It’ll boost your confidence and relieve stress faster than cardio alone. Doing power lifts doesn’t mean you’re going to be a powerlifter. It means you’re going to be strong, happy and confident.

Most women are afraid they’ll get “bulky”. Slow down sisters! Women produce about 5 to 10 percent the amount of testosterone men do, limiting our muscle-building potential as compared to men. To seriously gain size, you'd have to train (and eat) for it specifically.

So don't be afraid to get in there and throw it around like the big boys. 

See YOU at the bar(bell)!

Look Who's Coming To Your Defiant Team!

sherry bike.jpg

Big announcement folks! We are so pleased to introduce that Defiant athlete Sherry Ashford will be coming on board as the newest member of our Defiant team! She will be serving as our new Office Administrator. 

Our Defiant family will be lifted up by her passion, encouragement and enthusiasm. She will be connecting with you moving forward on things like memberships, events, scheduling and general bad-assery.  On the flip side, she will be assisting us internally in running business systems and processes, which is her specialty. 

I love Defiant and every member of our Defiant family. We have seen each other through the best of times, and even some through of the worst. But we come out stronger, together. 

The greatest service I can personally provide is to give our amazing Coaches & Staff the chance to serve you even better. 

Please show her some DCF love! Get to know her if you don’t already....

“Hey Lifting Friends!!  For those who don’t know me I thought I would introduce myself.  I started at Defiant in 2013 and I love that I get to say that.  I am a busy mom of four kids!  I tend to frequent the early morning 5:15 class, however I tend to squeeze in any class I can get to.  Before a life of kids and craziness my life was a little different, it is slowly becoming a blur.  I have a BS in Finance from BYU, an MBA in Strategy from Texas State University, and during that time my career was focused on Strategic Planning and Forecasting.   Aside from working out and taking care of my family circus, I love to cook and bake when I have time.  I have been known to leave treats in the locker room. 😊

~ Jenn