Sunday, December 13, 2009
Though posting in the middle of the night or early in the morning isn't too unusual for me, this morning is a bit of an exception because I was off on Saturday night/this morning. I actually woke up a couple of hours ago feeling pretty crummy, sporting a migraine. I've actually had a headache in some form most days here lately. I've also noticed a lot of muscle soreness and joint pain, even lots of "popping" here and there. Though I am accustomed to the regular ache and pain of a joint here or there, this has been more persistent and weird somehow. I have tight muscles and creaks and crackles where I am unaccustomed to them and have for weeks now. This comes despite my having added some Z-health and range of motion to what I do. I have been meticulous about form to make sure that isn't the issue. And I have rolled it over and over in my mind. Two things stick out...I am not hydrating as well as usual. During this move, it's just slipped by the wayside. AND...my nutrition has been pretty crappy. WAY more processed carbohydrates than I am accustomed to....HMMMM. Interesting. Will update when I adjust the nutrition. Any thoughts from anyone else?
AMAP sets of 5 double 16k squats/double 16kg C&P/green and black band assisted pullups in 12 minutes=3
AMAP sets of 5 double 16k high pull/5 hanging leg raises in 5 min in 12 min=7
All but the squats and high pulls felt particularly strong today. I was generating pretty good tension in the c&p and was very happy with that.
AMAP set of 1/1 12k TGU in 15 min=20, focusing on form, especially a good high hip bridge.
AMAP sets of 20 16kg swings in 12 min, I think this was 13.
I had forgotten how much nicer it is to do TGU's inside on level flooring. :)
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Life decisions have this way of causing me undue stress. I labor over them. I write lists of pros and cons. I drive my friends crazy talking the decision over and over as I try to decide what would be best. I talk to my hubby. I talk to my dad. I talk to my mom. I talk to my siblings. I am alternately sullen and annoyingly talkative about the subject. Generally, I am obnoxious. I think I get this way because I feel like each life decision sets in motion a series of events that have potential to put life on an unalterable course. And that inability to alter the course is what scares me. At times, the fear can be paralyzing, keeping me from making a decision and moving forward.
To some degree, I even have this difficulty with workout and nutrition plans. I tend to be afraid of losing strength or making gains or losses in the wrong places. Over the last week, I've thought a lot about this paralytic fear of decision making that I have, and I've realized that life is actually full of do-overs. Just because I took a right turn a mile back, doesn't mean I won't have another fork in the road later on. I might lose some strength here, or gain a few pounds there, but in the process, if I keep my eyes open and my ear to the ground, I will learn. With that knowledge, then, I can make a better decision next time. To learn, though, I have to keep moving forward. There's only so much knowledge to pick up here.
TODAY'S WORKOUT: VO2 max: 12k. first 44 sets, 7 reps, then 6 reps on the remainder of 80. For 4 random sets my timing was off and I only got 5. This is a direct result of 2 things...piss-poor fuel lately, especially yesterday, and where I am in my hormone cycle. I've noticed a serious dip in strength and endurance about 7-10 days before my period that usually lasts about a week. (Sorry, fellas, but I thought the girls might find this an interesting observation.
YESTERDAY'S WORKOUT: This was intended to be about twice as long, but I had "bidness" to take care of and it ate up my time before work. I started to ditch the workout all together, but thought better of it.
15 min of AMAP rounds of 5 (green and black band assisted)pullups/4 perfect pushups=8, same as last week but didn't feel nearly as strong as last week's did.
Monday, November 30, 2009
weight unknown (see more later)
In medical school psychiatric training we discovered an interesting fact about stressors. Not only are bad things considered stressors, but so are good things. For instance, when assigning points to stressors to "score" a patient, getting married ranks fairly similarly to getting a divorce or death of a loved one (no snide remarks here, folks). It's been a while, and I don't use this scoring system now, so I can't give you exact numbers on the scale, but I remember their close proximity on it because it fascinated me. If you think about it, this makes sense. Good events are, well, good, but they do cause a fair amount of change and effort on an individual's part. Even with good things come some anxiety. And we all respond a little differently to our stressors.
I. am. a. stress. eater. Big surprise, I know, but it's true. Life is one stressor after another, and with any luck the good ones balance the bad. Sometimes, though, even the usual stress load tips in the direction of overwhelming, and something has to give somewhere. The last couple of months have seemed to tip that load, both with good and with less-than-good things. On the tail end of Mom and Dad's visit, and my partial regression to childhood eating habits then, my response to the stress has been less than ideal. My nutrition has been poor. My focus on my workouts has been lacking, and I find myself feeling a bit too snug in my clothes. I also find myself wondering why I couldn't be one of those people whose response to stress is lack of appetite.
Today has been the first day in weeks that I haven't broken down and binged on something or had way too many processed carbohydrates. I still have 3 hours before bed, but I'll count that as a victory.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
A recurrent theme of conversation in our household of late has been the importance of keeping good company. I suspect most of us have heard of the concept of "playing" someone better to become better. That is to say, competing against a more skilled opponent. Business moguls apply this to business theory. Academics apply it to advanced thought. We, at home, have been applying it to friendships. True to form, I have been thinking about it in terms of how it applies to every aspect of my life.
To some degree, we are a collection of the people with whom we have come into contact throughout our lives.We learn from them, draw from them, absorb them, in ways that are often completely unconscious. Obviously, the more we are around someone, the more we absorb from them. One would think we incorporate little from strangers we only briefly encounter, but sometimes this assumption does not hold true. After living in the socially toxic culture that is Memphis, I was much less tolerant of the "little things." I was impatient and critical because that was the attitude I had learned to "throw back" at the total strangers who could interact on no other level. I have learned to grow past that point in my life, but I see now that I am a collection of the people I love. I know who gave me my love of the outdoors, who showed me that exercise could be playtime for adults, who taught me generosity and compassion, who emphasized attention to detail, and I carry a piece of them and all the others who have influenced me with me everywhere I go.
Realizing this fact, though, I had to examine the full nature of what I might be absorbing from the ones I choose to make a part of my life. With this has come some harsh reality. I have been examining my life on a much deeper level, looking through this particular "lens," and what I see has surprised me a bit. I am trying to adjust accordingly, and at times this can be exhausting.
As many as possible sets of 12kg snatches 12 right/12 left in 15 minutes...Today this was 9
rest 3 min
As many as possible sets of purple and black band assisted pullups alternated with 4 perfect pushups in 15 minutes. The pullups were supposed to be 5, but I couldn't get 5 good ones, so I went down to 4 then realized I needed to go down to 3. got 7 sets total.
Monday, November 9, 2009
169# (Yes, I have eaten everything that wasn't nailed down.)
Though I knew it had been a while since I checked in, I was astounded when I pulled up my blog and realized 3 weeks had passed since my last post. Good grief, life flies by! My last post addressed the then-upcoming Hardstyle Ventura workshop on October 24th. That post was optimistic, but unfortunately, falsely so. My personal battle with performance anxiety again became an issue as I was firmly STUCK at the very bottom of a pullup--a dead hang. I was going exactly NO WHERE the whole day of the workshop. If I were a man, I'm quite certain I would never have sex because undoubtedly I would have the world's worse case of erectile dysfunction. I mean, REALLY! I was supremely frustrated and disappointed. I think this frustration and my not wanting to face it are most of why it has taken me 3 weeks to address the workshop on the blog. With time, though, I have come to grips with the positive aspects of the weekend including coming away with some solid information, finally meeting some longtime internet friends (Joey Williams and Nikki Shlosser) face-to-face, seeing old friends, and making new ones. In many ways too, I am proud of not backing down despite my frustrations. Most of the people there could already do a pistol and at least one solid pull up. Many could do multiples without batting an eyelash. They were there to refine. Being there was easy for them. I, however, had to fight the embarrassment of being the lowest man on the totem pole, the remedial student. I am not accustomed to that position. Despite my discomfort, however, I stuck it out. I made sure to be the first to the bar, the first back to the learning circle, the first to try. Of that, I am proud.
Then I went out and got drunk to completely squash my insecurities. Nikki joined me:)
On Saturday I hosted Senior RKC Sara Cheatham for a one day workshop on kettlebells and Z-health. We covered a metric buttload of information, and I tried to do my best sponge interpretation. This gal knows her stuff and knows how to convey that knowledge to others. If you ever get a chance to go to her workshop, take it no questions asked.
5 Rounds of:
Black and Purple band assisted pullup to a hold with slow negative
5 perfect push ups
partial pistol 1/1
rest 1 min
20kg TGU 1/1 x 2
16kg Tabata snatches
30 burpees in 4'39"
Monday, October 19, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
I think that sometimes we cruise along oblivious to change. Sometimes that change is around us. Sometimes it is within us. Perhaps we are too busy evaluating other areas of our lives, scrutinizing them, trying to change them, that we miss important changes in other areas, changes that are really right under our noses.
In a lot of ways I have been a small bit of an emotional basketcase lately--for no reason at all really, except that estrogen is a bitch. As always, at least a piece of this dissatisfaction manifested itself in a frustration with how I look. A few days ago, though, I tried the pullup with only the black (~10-15#) band for assistance and darn near got my chest to the bar (My chin was there for sure)...almost got a full pullup with only that little bit of assistance, so I was dancing around, playing with my workout buddy, and generally being a fool when I started thinking about the workshop this weekend and how maybe, just maybe, with a little tweak in form I could do a full pullup this weekend (!). I have been quite excited, actually, about the possibilities this weekend holds for me both during the weekend itself and later as I apply the principles I hope to learn and come closer to mastering. As I was thinking about the almost pull up and the possibilities of the weekend, it hit me, that teeny epiphany, that small glimmer of personal insight. My journey has changed its course. In the beginning of the journey, I desperately wanted the aesthetic benefits. They were the focus of thought and planning while other, more performance-oriented goals, were secondary benefits I knew would come. I have by no means reached my aesthetic goals. On the contrary, I find my being so far from them a constant source of frustration. But...I find myself more concerned with losing the 25 or 30 extra pounds I need to lose more because doing so will most definitely make pull ups easier. Heck, if I were currently that light I'd be doing pull-ups! I find myself thinking more about the day I can do multiple pistols and pull ups and push ups at will than the day I look rockin' awesome in a bikini. Maybe that is more because right now the pull ups and pistols seem more attainable, but I like to think it's because in some small part, I have changed and come to see that function is way more fun than form.
TODAY'S WORKOUT: 5 5-rung ladders of black and purple-band assisted pull ups and perfect elevated pushups.
1st ladder-knee together squats with one-legged pulses at the bottom.
2nd ladder-partial pistols 1/1
3rd ladder-plank x 30 sec
4th ladder-knee together squats, laddered reps
5th ladder- 4 burpees
Finished with 16 burpees.
YESTERDAY'S WORKOUT: 75 Burpees, 5 min of 16kg snatches (80).
SATURDAY: No workout
FRIDAY'S WORKOUT: 5 rounds of
20kg press 2/2 Double 16kg press x 2
I'm getting 2 strict 20kg presses on the left for 3 rounds usually, then having to go to a push-press for one of the presses. On the right, I can do two strict presses for 1-3 rounds. I'm still not back to where I was with this before the pneumonia, but I'm getting there.
20kg Goblet squat x 5
Perfect pushup x 3
double 16kg OL Dead 3/3
High Plank x 30 sec
Burpee x 5
After the 5 rounds, I did 8 burpees to get my challenge numbers for the day then did 20kg Tabata swings.
THURSDAY'S WORKOUT: See today's workout, but add 45 burpees to the end.
WEDNESDAY: No workout.
TUESDAY'S WORKOUT: See Friday's workout, add 5 burpees at the end of the 5 rounds, and add 2 12kg TGu per side to the end.
Monday, October 12, 2009
I wonder, though, if these restaurant patrons even remotely begin to understand that even one meal like this has an immediate effect on their system. We tend to think of things like our nutritional intake in the cumulative, and ultimately, that is the most important thing. I, like most active and health-oriented people, believe in the mental health behind an occasional "cheat day" or "cheat meal." Complete glutinous debauchery like this, however, can have immediate ramifications. Within minutes of completing a high fat meal like this, our body is bombarded with its contents and is forced to deal with them. For some, the result is fat-laden blood like this (you might remember this pic from last year on my blog):
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
I suspect you've heard of "the X factor." In TV circles it is a British talent show. In my world, it is what I call that unexpected factor that threatens to derail well-laid nutritional plans--temptations at work, an unexpected celebratory dinner, unusual stressors. I suspect you know exactly what I mean. The X factor is a post unto itself.
This post, however, is about what I call my "Y factor," another term for how my mom and dad factor into my diet. Somehow around them I revert to the chubby little 13-year-old, ready to gobble up every morsel of food in sight. They offer, and I find my ability to politely decline completely absent. Part of this is a conscious decision on my part. I have made a deal with myself. My mom is 78-years-old; my dad is 73. No matter how badly I want time to stand still, they will not be a part of my life forever. One day, my mom's dinners and my dad's breakfast will be a savored memory, a dream that is the gift of peaceful sleep. There will be no more of Mom's cornbread, pecan pie or chocolate pie, no more of Dad's omelets and bacon. Sharing a meal with them will not be possible. So with them, I let things slide. I take every chance to eat their cooking, enjoy every bite eaten at the table with them. But then there are liberties I shouldn't take... Mom is as much of a sugar freak as I am, and I allow her to enable me a little much. Dad is a snacker, and I join in a bit too frequently. This is my Y factor.
For the last 26 days, I have been tussling with my Y factor. I don't regret it. I never really thought Mom and Dad would come see me, much less stay 26 days. I have enjoyed this time and treasured it. Today, though, they have gone back to Tennessee, and it's time to put the hammer down.
St. Augustine Lighthouse
Friday, September 25, 2009
I have been comtemplating taking my camera gear to the upcoming Hardstyle Ventura workshop and offering to do some photography work for the other RKC's there. Since I hadn't had a fellow girevik to use as a subject, I wanted to beg someone into being my guinea pig for use not only as a learning experience for me, but also as an example of what I'd have to offer those who might be interested in having some photos done. Fellow RKC Jon Alford and I have been working on getting together for a workout for a few months now, so when it looked like we'd be able to get together, I asked if he'd be sport enough to be my guinea pig. Not only was he sport enough, but he also was willing for me to share them with the world. Here are some of the results. To see the rest of what we got, check out http://oncearoundvenus.photoworkshop.com.
Monday, September 21, 2009
As a friend recently brought to my attention, I do love my gadgets. As simple as I love my workouts to be, there is one gadget that is consistently by my side--my iPod. One obvious thing it contributes is the music. BUT the other thing that I have come to love is my Ultratimer application on my iPod. Don't get me wrong, I love the Gymboss. It's a fantastic gadget, and I'd still recommend it to anyone who asked. But the Ultratimer is a step beyond. I can set up a workout with as many intervals for as many different lengths of time as I like, AND I can save those workouts under a specific name to be used ad nauseum in the future. There are also multiple different sounds to use to start or finish an interval or round. Here are a couple of screen shots from my iPhone so you can see a bit of what it's like. The ap is $2 and worth 10 times that.WORKOUT:
Black and Purple Band Assisted Pull ups/Elevated Push Ups: 3 ladders of 5 Rungs each.
1st ladder had rungs separated by knee together squats with one-legged pulses at the bottom.
2nd ladder had partial pistols with 12kg counterbalance (also used in ladder one).
3rd ladder had 30 sec of plank per rung.
Then 3'47" of 30 Challenge Burpees.
FRIDAY: No workout.
THURSDAY'S WORKOUT: More to come about this little treat later.
WEDNESDAY'S WORKOUT: None
TUESDAY'S WORKOUT: VO2 Max Workout Ass-kicking. 12kg for 66 rounds. 1st half for 7 reps, second for 6. It seriously kicked my butt.
20kg C&P/PP x 2/2, 12kg C&BUP x 2/2
5 Elevated Perfect Pushups
20kg Walking lunges x 12
Double 20kg deads
high plank x 30sec
rest 2 min
I actually was able to get 4 strict 20kg presses on the right and 5 on the left.
See yesterday's workout.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I hate spiders.
I don't mind most other creepy, crawly critters. Snakes? No problem. Ok, I hate scorpions, too, but spiders, well, they are Satan-spawn. Hate 'em. And you see, Florida is spider heaven. They're frikkin' everywhere! I was well aware of this fact when I bought into this deal, and decided just to suck it up and deal with it. Spiders eat mosquitoes, and the only thing more plentiful in Florida than spiders is mosquitoes. Hate them too. As a rule, I try not to kill things. Bad karma. Everything is here for a purpose and all that jazz. Spiders and mosquitoes are fair game--especially if they're in the house. As a part of my attempting to overcome my aversion, a few months ago when this gal (look at the white space just to the right of the word "Cameo") moved into the neighborhood in and around my pull up bar, I chose to just leave her there and see what came of it. We made an agreement: I would leave her alone. She would leave me alone. Thus began my tenuous relationship with an arachnid workout buddy. The body on this joker, with NO exageration, is as big as my thumb. I almost renigged on our original agreement today, though, when I got ready to start my workout and she was fighting a hornet that captured in her web. As creepy as that was, it was nothing compared to watching her spin a web around the hornet, carry it to the center of the web then suck its bug guts out. I get chill bumps just writing about it! She's still there, though, and with the help of her friends (see video below), I'm slowly growing less repulsed by the 8-legged critters in our yard.
3 5-rung black and purple band-assisted pullups/elevated perfect pushups
Ladder 1: squats with single leg pulse at bottom on each rung
Ladder 2: partial pistols
Ladder 3: 30sec plank.
30 Challenge Burpees
Saturday, September 5, 2009
My folks are here in Florida to visit for a while--how long is yet to be seen. They got here on Wednesday, and each day we have visited, watched some TV, had a little excursion here and there, and generally enjoyed each others' company. I was born 27 days after my mom's 42nd birthday, so my parents are a little older than other people's my age. My mom is 78, my dad 73. As much as I enjoy seeing them, each time I do, I must adjust to their physical and mental decline from the way I see them in my mind. In my mind's eye, my dad can still reach out and wrap his arms around a fencepost, waggle it around a little bit and pull it out of the ground. My mom is still the best crossword solver in the world. And I am still 20...
Just like our muscles become conditioned to our workouts, and we must change things up to continue to challenge them, our brains become conditioned to our patterns. Each and every part of our bodies will do everything it can to make its job as easy as possible. That is simple survival. The patterns of our actions form pathways in our brain that allow us to perform those patterns with as little effort for our brain as possible, on autopilot so-to-speak. Think about your drive home from work. How many times do you get home and not remember much of anything about your drive? You were on autopilot. When you break out of this pattern, you force your brain to construct new neuronal pathways, to literally fire new circuits that weren't being used, just like a new workout recruits new muscle. Use a neuron, and it is more likely to keep firing. Let it sit dormant, and well, it's harder to get going again.
So how does one keeps as many neurons firing as possible as frequently as possible? The first step is to use as many senses as possible as frequently as possible. Consciously absorb all of the sensory input you can as you go through your day. Shut one sense down in an attempt to heighten another. Close your eyes and focus, really focus, on the sounds around you, the way the room or the yard or parking lot smells. Focus on the textures of your surroundings. Slow down at your meal and truly taste your food, feel the way it pops between your teeth or smooshes on your tongue. Don't just float through life, BE AWARE of everything. APPRECIATE everything. For what it's worth, the mentor who taught me this concept believed sex was the best way to stimulate all the senses at once. :)
The next step in keeping the brain sharp is staying out of the proverbial rut. If you usually drive to work in an automatic, every now and then borrow a standard transmission vehicle and drive it. Occasionally ride with the windows down or drive with gloves on. Take a different route to work. Try new foods. Sit in a different chair in your living room. Do your nightly routine out of its usual order. You get the idea. Shake things up. It forces your brain to stay awake.
Give it a try. It's actually refreshing.
TODAY'S WORKOUT: 16kg Swing Practice with a focus on keeping it sharp. 40 sec of swing/20 sec of rest x 30 rounds.
I had planned to do my grind routine today, but my head wasn't in it d/t some minor family strife. I almost ditched the workout entirely, but decided to just go with something simple and trudge on.
3 5-rung ladders
Black and Purple band-assisted pullups/Perfect elevated pushups.
1st ladder--feet together squat into one-legged pulse on each side with each rung
2nd ladder--partial pistols from the top
3rd ladder--30sec of plank.
VO2 max 80 sets of 7 with the 12kg.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
VIDEO 3: When I realized the rain was going to keep coming (that's what you hear tap, tap, tapping), I decided to just go to the 16kg and press it 3 times/round like I did before adding the BUP to my workout.
VIDEO 4: Same as 3, but with the left arm.
VIDEO 5: After my sub-par run at the BUP this afternoon, I wanted to prove I can do it with good form and give a friend I know a good example to follow. ;) So I got some more video at work. Here's the right side...
VIDEO 6:...and here's the left.
The beauty of the BUP at a weight that one can't manhandle is that it must be performed with tension--from the ground up. Start with good tension in the clean: feet pushing through the ground, kneecaps pulled up into the quads, hamstrings pulled up into the glutes, glutes holding that imaginary quarter, lats locking those shoulders in, opposite arm tensing into a firm fist, tight grip on the bell, deep breath, pressurize and press through the bell to the sky with a hiss. Tension, tension, tension. It's beautiful.
Monday, August 24, 2009
I had lost my appetite while I was sick. I really didn't want any food at all then, but when I did eat, all I could stomach was fruit. I've NEVER been more than a day or two without an appetite, so this was a very new thing for me. Now, however, my appetite is back with a vengeance, and the last few nights have been ones during which I have felt compelled to do my bottomless pit impression. I am acutely aware that this must stop, and quickly.
4 4-rung ladders of black and purple band assisted pullups alternated with elevated perfect pushups.
During ladders 1 and 2, I did knee together squats with one-legged pulses at the bottom.
Ladder 3, I did 2 knee together squats per rung.
Ladder 4 I did 30 sec of plank per rung.
The difference between this workout and the one I did like it earlier in the week was remarkable. My pacing was much better; I felt stronger. It was just much better. I'm still way off of where I was, but I'm much better than I was just 5 days ago.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Upon awakening this afternoon, I found my anterior and middle deltoids to be quite sore bilaterally. I had been having some occasional episodes of this a while back and, was at that time, attributing it to press form. In light of the soreness popping up after my pullup/pushup routine yesterday, I now know it's from that routine instead. AND I'm thinking it's from initiating the movement too much from the shoulder and not enough from the lats. What do you think?
20kg clean and pushpress x 2/2, 16kg clean and press x 3/3 (I actually had to do some frikkin' pushpresses with the 16, too, GRRR!)
Elevated perfect pushup x 4
20kg walking lunge x 10
Double 20kg Deadlift x 5
Plank x 30sec
Rest x 3 min.
x 4 rounds...only 4 rounds.
Tabata 16kg snatches.
Tabata 20kg swings (wussed out on set 4 of the swings and just rested.)
LAST time I did this workout, before getting sick, I did five rounds, at a much better pace, strict pressing the 20 at least once each round, and two several rounds. I was doing 6 pushups each round, 12 lunges, 7 deadlifts, and limiting rest to 2 min b/w rounds.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
off-158.5# (lots of salt yesterday)
I knew that I wasn't 100%, that my strength had waned, but my breathing was better, I'd not had fever in a week, and I tolerated work pretty well the last two nights. So I decided to test the waters and see just what I'd lost and what I'd retained while my body fought off infection. I decided to start with my bodyweight routine mostly to get loosened up and remind my body of movement and tension before reintroducing the 16kg and 20kg bells. Before I got sick, I was doing 3 5-rung assisted pullup ladders with the black and purple bands alternated with elevated perfect pushups. I went into things today playing a bit looser than I usually like to. Where before, my ladders were a quick clip of pullups, right to pushups, right to partial pistols and on to the next rung, taking a couple minutes of rest before the next ladder, today, I paced myself a little more slowly. Though I didn't take specific rest time between rungs, I just floated from one to the next as I felt comfortable then took the prescribed 2 minutes rest between ladders. I started the first ladder trying for 5 rungs, but couldn't get but half a rep on the last rep of the 5th rung, so I decided to back down to 4-rung ladders, hoping for at least 4 ladders, maybe five. Turns out the last reps on the last 2 ladders sucked, and honestly don't really even count. Instead of partial pistols, I took a cue from Franz Snideman's recent videos and did knee-together squats with one-legged pulses at the bottom during the first 2 ladders. For the 3rd, I did knee together squats without the pulses, and for the 4th, I did 30sec planks with each rung. Afterward, my muscles were jelly, and I'm still feeling the work. This puts me 4-6 weeks behind where I should be right now. I'd be lying through my teeth if I were to say I'm not horribly disappointed. I sincerely hope, though, that the strength will return more quickly than it was earned the first time around. As it is, I'll focus on the positive of having lost some weight and try to keep that off while regaining my strength.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
First day back to work in a while--156#
I've still not resumed my workouts since being down with pneumonia, but on my way out the door this afternoon, going to work, I picked up the 20kg to see if I could still press it. It was nowhere near going up on the right, but went up on the left. I tried again this morning when I got home and neither side would make it go. The cool of the morning made a difference, though. Before work when I tried it, the muggy heat of the afternoon sucked my breath away and I was quite winded for a while afterward--even with just one press attempt on each side. This morning, breath wasn't so much of an issue. I think I'll begin to do some sort of workout, though I'm sure it'll be quite a step back from where I was, in a day or two. I'm antsy and anxious to be moving again.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
I'm sorry I've been a bit sparse the last couple of weeks. The hubby and I got back from Orlando where we had a fantastic time and I immediately turned around and took a flight to Tennessee to see Mom and Dad. Things began to take a serious downturn there. I thought my feeling bad that first day home was just a result of a horrible day of traveling until I spiked a fever that night. The next week has been a blur of which I have only scattered recollection. I have never been so sick. I really thought I had N1H1 flu, having gotten it from some of the many, many people we were around in Orlando. I went to see a local doc who chalked my illness up to bronchitis but swabbed me for N1H1 just in case for CDC purposes (a test that takes a week to result). And Saturday night I came to Nashville to hang out in preparation for my flight home Sunday morning. Welll.....I didn't quite make it. Instead, I ended up in the emergency department where we found full infected lobes in 2 of the 5 lobes of my lungs. They admitted me for a couple of days and now I feel like a new woman. The doc recommended though, that I not start working out again for at least another week to give my lungs a chance to heal more. I can already tell that I am significantly weakened from the last week's ordeal and another week down will put me that much further behind. I'll take it easy, though, and try to learn from the recovery so that I can help others with similar situations in the future. Maybe, it'll be something we can all learn from.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
go. Add to that the trauma of bathing suit shopping and, well, let's
just say a lil mojito is my friend. And no, I wasn't seriously
considering that little bikini on the wall.
The mirrors of the hotel's gym were a wake up call this morning too. I
love working out outside & away from other people but I can see some
advantage to working out with the feedback of mirrors on occasion. You
know, I feel strong & fit so I don't see myself as chubby as I am.
Occasionally, a mirror is a necessary reality check. (: The RV is
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Everyone takes a different approach to workout logs. Some people don't use them at all. Others document not only every rep and plan, but also every other detail in their lives, in them. Some use good old-fashioned paper and pen. Others have moved on to some electronic form of record keeping. As with anything, there is value to all of these approaches--even no log at all.
Some people feel so intimidated and/or restricted by a workout log that if they felt like they had to keep one to "workout properly" they wouldn't do it at all. So, for them, that approach is perfectly valid. I, however, tend to fall more in the category of people who keep their workout log together with my record of life in general. I log the day, my weight that day, whether or not I work, and my workout every day. If a workout is particularly good or bad or has a pertinent feature, I write that down. If something in my life is bothering me or is just wonderful, I write about that. And I make general notes about my nutrition. About once a month or so, I write my measurements in a different color. PR's get special indicators, and changes in the program get notes. I have referenced my log quite a bit here lately, going through it to plan my workouts and when I need to advance myself to the next level. Doing that rather than depending on waiting for a point when my body felt as if I needed to move on, has led me to make advances lately in my lifting capabilities that I'm not sure I would have made otherwise. And by looking back, I've also been able to see just how far I have come strength-wise. I have also been able to track my weight and measurements to confirm what I felt was stagnation and compare what I was doing this time last year when I was a little lighter to what I am doing now. Because I have not detailed my nutrition but only given a general overlay, however, I am having some difficulty tracking exactly how that has played in without overlaying the paper log with my online food log. As a result, I am rethinking to some degree that way of keeping the info. Certainly, the personal notes in my log are not something everyone would feel comfortable doing. I believe, though, that they are crucial to the process. Life is not a vaccuum. Each aspect of our lives in intricately related to all of the other aspects, and to ignore the link would be unwise. And as I have reviewed what is going on in my life at any given point, I have been able to learn something about how it has affected everything else. Hindsight is 20/20, you know.
Another large value to a workout log is the ability to show it to a trainer or appropriately educated friend. Despite the clarity that time can provide an individual, we are still approaching any topic with our own biases. Fresh eyes can often find patterns and issues that we might overlook. Here, I suspect, many would balk at sharing a log with personal notes, and for good reason, I suppose. I have contemplated just this thing and decided that the benefits would outweigh the risks if I decided to have someone take a look.
I've been loving my workout log here lately. Some would call it a journal, and I suppose it is. The people at work think I'm crazy for writing in it as much as I do. It is tattered from being well-loved, warped from workouts in the rain, dirty from lying on the ground and smudged from sweaty hands. And it is worth every second spent.
TODAY NO WORKOUT
3 5-rung ladders of
black and purple band-assisted pullups/elevated pushups.
After each rung, I did 1/1 partial pistols counterbalanced with the 12kg.
30 Challenge Burpees in 3' 46"
SUNDAY: NO WORKOUT
I'm consoling myself, saying my week lately is starting on Wednesday. So I took Sunday and Tuesday off last week, and this week will be Wednesday and Sunday. LOL
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Progress can often be about trial and error. Ideally, we lay out plans, follow them, review progress or lack thereof, and adjust our actions accordingly. Last Monday was a splurge day for me, earned for a week of closely following my plan. I had my splurge meal, trying not to overdo it, and moved on to my second week of the plan. Monday, before my splurge, I was at 161 pounds, 1.5 pounds lost for the week of good work--pretty much what I want. Upon awakening Tuesday morning, I was at 163.5 pounds. I didn't even eat 2 and a half pounds of food total on Monday--despite the splurge. What the heck?! So in the following days I have fought to work my way back down to that 161. Well, first, I got hacked off and ate waffles for my big meal on Tuesday, thinking the whole venture was pointless regardless, but then I started to fight my way back down. I have talked before about how angry I sometimes get at the injustice I feel that I gain weight so easily, and sometimes, I still feel that anger brewing. Certainly when I stepped on the scale Tuesday, it began to rear its ugly head. I have to remind myself, though, that I have been given gifts and advantages in other areas. After reminding myself of just that a couple of times, I checked my attitude and decided that one week of consistency was good for forming good habits, but at least 2 were going to be necessary to make any serious progress. (I huff a little here as I realize that "serious progress" consists of maintaining a friggin' 1.5 pound weight loss.) So as we all know consistency is key, but the depth and breadth of the consistency necessary to see progress is different for each and every person and different from one point in our lives to another.
Act according to plan.
Adjust the plan.
To remind myself of the short-term benefits, here's a pic of this week's prize for a week of sound work, a pair of polarized Monster Pups:
And for 6 weeks of sound work (which started over on Wednesday because I had the crappy Tuesday waffles)... I think this is the pen I want.
5 rounds of...
20kg C&PP 3/3, 16kg C&P 2/2
(I was able to do 2 strict 20kg C&P's on rounds 1 & 2 on the left and on round 1 on the right. The rest of the rounds were with a strict press only on the first rep of the round.)
6 Elevated Pushups
20kg walking lunge x 10
double 20kg deadlifts x 7
plank x 30 sec
...note the increase in reps on the pushups and the deads.
20kg tabata swings
30 Challenge burpees in 4'12"
5 minutes of snatches=72reps
Rest 30 sec ...16kg for 12 rounds
...I spent this 16 minutes truly practicing my swing, focusing carefully on form.
30 Challenge burpees in 4'45"
Black and purple band-assisted pullups/elevated pushups in 3, 5 rung ladders
Partial Pistols counterbalanced with 12kg-1/1 after each rung
30 Challenge Burpees in 4'37"
5 min of 16kg snatches=68
Rest 30 Challenge Burpees.
This was not a particularly strong workout from the beginning.
TUESDAY NO WORKOUT.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed If you haven't seen this, you REALLY need to.
...And if you' re not a Netflix member yet, consider it now. The hubby and I recently joined after a couple years of resistance. What we will save on late fees and buying DVD versions of TV shows alone will pay for the membership 5 times over.
Monday, July 6, 2009
TODAY'S WORKOUT: 5 rounds of ..
20kg C&P R/L, 20kg C&PP 2R/2L, 16kg C&P 2R/2L
5 Elevated Perfect Pushups
10 20kg walking lunges
double 20kg Deads x 5
Plank x 30sec
Rest x 3 min
***I took more rest than usual today because everything was just frikkin heavy today. I was just not feeling very strong. I got it finished, though.
30 Challenge Burpees in 5'35"
YESTERDAY: Off day, no workout.
5 4-rung ladders of black and purple band assisted pullups/perfect elevated pushups.
During 3 of those ladders, I did 12kg counterbalanced partial pistols 1/1 after each rung.
During the last 2 ladders, I subsituted 30 sec of plank.
***it's time to increase the intensity here. Next week will be 3 5-rung ladders.
20kg tabata swings
30 Challenge Burpees.
5min of snatches=78
16 min of...
16kg swing x 50sec
rest x 25 sec
30 Challenge Burpees
Today completed a week of sticking to the Warrior Diet, so today was a splurge day,and first chance I get, I'll be going to Gainesville to get my prize. :)
Friday, July 3, 2009
107+ degrees heat index
Because we all need to focus on this sort of thing more often...
Five things that make me smile--first from my heart then outward. And I made the rule for myself that none of them could be the ones I think about being so grateful for every single moment of every single day.
1. Watching my puppy-dog canter. I think she must have had all the puppy stolen from her before we got her. She doesn't really know how to play, but sometimes she tries, and when she does, she canters...with her big golden ears flopping and a crooked doggy grin. She is beautiful, and I love her SO much.
2. A good,cold, ripe watermelon...with some salt.
3. Hot, muggy nights.
4. Clear, starry nights as seen through the sillhouette of the pine trees.
5. A brisk, solid acceleration all the way from 1st gear to 5th (or sixth if I'm in the Focus). Pedal to the floor and open road ahead.
5 rounds of...
20kg C&P x 1 R/L, 20kg C&PP x 2 R/L, 16kg C&P x 2 R/L (I added another 20kg C&PP)
5 Perfect Elevated Pushups
10 20kg Walking Lunges
5 double 20kg Deads.
30 sec of Plank
Rest 2 min.
20kg Tabata Swing
30 Challenge Burpees in 5 min 10 sec.
21 min of...
30 sec jumproap
30 sec 20kg swing
50 sec rest
At first, this seems like a lot of rest, and I start thinking,"Maybe I"ll drop the rest interval." Then, as the 20 minutes progess, I need every bit of that recovery. :)
Monday, June 29, 2009
Work 8p-8a, 163.5#
How quickly life can derail us never ceases to amaze me. My mind is getting closer and closer to reaching the place where it needs to be in terms of mindset for weightloss. I feel closer than I have in months to a point where I can truly buckle down and make some progress,and I expressed part of that last week with my post about goals. The weekend, however, brought a reminder of how easily an effort can be thwarted and, simultaneously, a reminder of how amazingly fortunate I am. Friday I did well in terms of sticking to my nutritional plan until late in the evening when I found myself confused and a bit heartsick. I was upset and emotionally taxed, and I could hear the angel on one shoulder, the devil on the other as I thought about my friend's Oreos on the counter. Though rationally I knew they would do little for me, and ultimately I would be disappointed in myself, I poured a glass of milk, sat down with a third of a package of Oreos and willingly, consciously ate the WHOLE thing. I sat there, enjoying the taste of every bite and knowing with each one that it was not what I needed or even truly what I wanted. I found myself feeling as if I were punishing myself with the Oreos. I didn't know exactly what for, but that was how I felt. I know that makes no sense, but that is how it felt. And somehow afterward, I didn't and don't feel guilty about eating them. I had thought consciously about what I was doing before and during. Each cookie was a choice, one made with full awareness of the potential consequences, and I accepted them. The next night I had a similar derailment involving a Butterfinger milkshake and fries, again, thought out and accepted before and after. Oddly enough, I've not beat myself up over these transgressions but accepted them for what they were, and now I am moving on. I am actually proud that I am picking up where I left off. My "week" of success will simply be measured from a new starting point as I pick up and begin again. Somehow, I feel like there was actually some progress made by accepting this as I have and moving on in the manner that I have, so I am satisfied with it as opposed to frustrated as I would have been in the past. Certainly that can only be progress.
In the midst of this, I am reminded how amazingly fortunate I am and how very much I love my dear husband.
WORKOUT: Sunday, a day off as usual
5 rounds of:
20kg C&PP x 2/2, 16kg C&P x 3/3
Elevated perfect pushups
20kg walking lunge x 10
double 20kg deads x 5
plank x 30
***I hit the first C&P with the 20kg as a strict press during all 5 rounds on both sides. This continues to get stronger and feel better. I am REALLY proud of this progress as well as the progress I am feeling in those pushups. I have gone relatively quickly from having to do the last 2-3 rounds on my knees to being able to do all rounds elevated.
FRIDAY'S WORKOUT: I took this day off due to some muscle and joint strain issues contributing to a whopping migraine.
Friday, June 26, 2009
I wasn't going to blog today. I was going to save these pics for a couple days from now since I posted a long one yesterday. Having talked about goals and such, I wanted it to be on the forefront of the blog for a few days in order for a few more people to be exposed to it--more accountability that way.
Unfortunately, I'm actually trying very hard to stick to my plan, and that means not going into the kitchen and getting a protein bar. In order to preoccupy myself, I decided to go ahead and post.
A friend of ours is down here from TN to see us, and has planned for a while to get some tattoo work done while here. After some fairly extensive research, he decided to go with Mike at Anthem Tattoo in Gainesville and was lucky enough that Mike had had some cancellations just in time for him to get some work done. You might be able to tell that there is some cover-up work at the tail of the koi fish. Apparently it points downstream because that signifies that a person is not over all the hurdles of life yet and knows it. The black and white version you see here took 6.5 hours. The red you see is inflammation/irritation. Our friend will come back in August for the color to be done.
Rest 5 min.
5 min of 16kg Snatches=79
Rest 3 min.
Rest 3 min.
30 Challenge Burpees in 4'34"
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Ultimate Goal: 140#
Intermediate Goal: 153# by October 24th.
Why October 24th you say? Well, you see, I've decided to go to Pavel's bodyweight workshop in Ventura on the 24th. He's going to be focusing on the very things I've been working so hard to master for months now, the things I will need to have mastered to complete the RKC II as planned next June. 153# will put me back to where I was for the RKC last October and 10# closer to that unassisted pullup.
Goals do us little good without a distinct plan for reaching them. There are few times we would start out on a trip across country with no route in mind. So let's talk a little about the goals and the route.
Step 1: Continue current workouts at least 5x/week.
Step 2: Ratchet Nutrition
a. Warrior Diet: I've been trying for the last couple of months to get the Zone Diet dialed in. I really like the science of this particular plan of action, and would really like to be able to follow it. Ultimately, though, the best plan is the one I will follow. The constant grazing sort of approach to the Zone doesn't work well with my psyche. Right now, the frequent meals start well then degrade to eating crap. Maybe eventually, I'll be able to come back to this process and master it, but right now it's not working, so I need to adjust and change gears. Like Mr. Gallagher says in The Purposeful Primitive, there is nothing wrong with rotating plans. This rotation will be for the Warrior Diet.
1. One splurge day a week for the first 2 weeks.
*Upon successful completion of each week, which means having limited myself to one splurge day and having followed the principles of the Warrior Diet (for me, the large meal is at the beginning of my day because of logistics each and every day, I may get something from my list of things that I would like to have: another pair of Five Fingers, a new pair of sunglasses, a new Under Armour Shirt, Anything from my favorite store in the mall .
2. One splurge day every two weeks for the month following that. For every successful two weeks span, another purchase.
3. Reevaluate at the end of that 6 weeks. After a successful 2 months, I can get the inkpen I've been ogling.
**Note that "success" is not defined as acheiving any weight loss; it is defined as following the plan.
Now for some happy...
5 4-rung ladders of back and purple band assisted pullups/Elevated Perfect pushups.
During the first 3 ladders, between rungs, I did partial pistols counterbalanced with the 12kg. One on each side.
During the last 2 ladders, I did 30 sec planks between each rung.
Then I did 30 Challenge Burpees in approximately 4 min. (I forgot to start the timer right away.)
Followed that with 20kg Tabata swings.
I dragged my ass out of bed too late to do an organized workout before work, so I took a 16kg bell to work and did Essentials once there and once when I got home.
20kg C&PP x 2, 16kg C&P x 3--R then L
Perfect Pushups Elevated x 5
10 20kg Walking lunges.
Double 20kg Deadlifts x 5
Plank x 30sec
Rest 2 min.
Repeat 5x: The first press on the L with the 20 was a strict press on all 5 rounds. Rounds 2 and 5 on the right I was able to do a strict press with the 20 on the first rep.
Then 30 challenge burpees in 6'28".
SUNDAY=Scheduled off day.