Wednesday, December 31, 2008

What are you waiting for?

What an amazing time
What a family
How did the years go by
Now its only me
  -- Gwen Stefani, What are you waiting for?

I completed my first P90X recovery week.  There should be a disclaimer on the packaging.  Recovery week means you get to do more hard stuff.  Just different.  Like one of Liz's training plans.  It started out easy enough with Yoga.  I was so excited to have a recovery week, I decided to actually DO all the hard yoga stuff instead of taking the easy route.  When I was done, I could feel every muscle in my back.  Upward Dog is much different than Cobra evidently.

Day 2 was new, Core Synergistics.  How bad could it be right?  Right?  It WAS recovery week.  I almost cried when I saw pushups.  PUSH UPS!?!  WTH?  It ended up being one tough workout.  Core indeed.  Day 3 was back to familiar Kempo X.  Only this time, I brung it! LOL...  I am finding that the more I do these workouts, the better I get at them and the harder I work.

Finally, finally!  Monday, Day 4, I did X Stretch.  It was still an hour, but an hour of good stretching.  That was a break!  Then, I reversed the process with Core and then Yoga.  I really really like Yoga.

I am trying to get back onto a Monday to Sunday schedule, just in case I want to start training for something in February.  Haven't decided.  I may just start P90X all over again but throw in some running.  We'll see.  Right now, I only have one race on my plan for next year, and that's Callaway Garden's Super Sprint.  I'm sure I'll pick up some running races as well, but I don't need to plan that far in advance for those.  Towards the end of the year, I want to do something longer, an Olympic or Half Iron.  If I am going to do Augusta 70.3, then I need to decide soon.

Looking back...

Wow!  What a fantastic year it has been.  Some of you may or may not know, but the restaurant hasn't been doing to well, and the current economic situation has made it worse.  All through Disney 70.3 and Ironman Florida, I've had this huge sword hanging over my head.  I feel so blessed and fortunate to have achieved all of my goals for the year without having to deal with a catastrophic financial crisis.  I owe a HUGE amount of gratitude to my life partner who did everything in her power to make this happen, and my children as well.  We are greater than the sum of our parts.

I've enjoyed following you guys this year.  You are truly a great group of friends (and if you are not, I don't want to know!  LOL...).  I look forward to following each and every one of you next year as you realize your dreams.

What are you waiting for?

Wes

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Jolly Good Christmas

I am wishing all my friends and their families a safe, wonderful, joyful Christmas.  To my own family, I miss you all!!


Merry Christmas, everybody!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Proud Moment

Christmas time is here, 
happiness and cheer, 
fun for all that children 
call their favorite time of year.

-- A Charlie Brown Christm
as

Three times a week, I do these fifteen minute Ab Ripper X workouts.  The first 12 minutes or so are exercises, and the last three or so are cool down.  Every exercise focuses on some aspect of your core.  At the end of the exercises, the last, we do Mason Twists.  If you are not familiar with those, you sit on your butt, legs in front of you, knees slightly bent.  You then lift your feet off the ground, clasp your hands in front of you.  Then, you touch the ground next to your right hip, then the left hip, then back again, feet still off the ground.  Thus the twist.

I started off doing about fifteen.  I made it to twenty, then thirty.  Well, today, I did all forty!  I was so psyched.  I have just now started feeling the results in my core, and it really was all about making my mind up before I started.  I decided today was the day.

Merry Christmas to me!!

My advice for anyone thinking about P90X?  First off, bring it!!  Cliche?  Definitely.  Plan on committing and doing your best.  Second, P90X on your terms.  Unless you are supa fit, do not even attempt to keep up with the guys on the DVDs.  I love their motto.  Do your best.  Forget the rest.  Just push yourself a little harder every day.  It will come.

Wes

Monday, December 22, 2008

Just Left of Center

Dear Santa,

I've been a very good boy.

Luv,

Wes

Four days...  It took me four days to bring my physical body back into alignment.  The night I slept from 12 PM to 6 AM turned the tide.  The next night, I got eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.  Just to test myself, on the sixth or seventh night, I drank one light beer.  The next morning, I felt like total crap.  We call that "getting clocked".  Hello?

The P90X workout sessions are going fine.  I rode my bike last week, and even though I had an off day on Wednesday, my legs ALMOST couldn't take the next days workouts.  If I am going to add stuff on top of these workouts, I have to be real careful.

Saturday night, Dee Dee and I got almost all of our Christmas shopping done.  That's a good feeling to have.  I've been asked a few times what I am getting for Christmas.  The answer is nothing.  I've been having my Christmas all year, culminating in Ironman Florida.  The 25th of December is not my time...

After shopping Saturday, Dee Dee and I went out on a hot date.  Let's see, I had three Tanqueray and Tonics, 2 Alabama Slammers, 2 Red Deaths a lot to drink, and one Mortal Sin (brownie Ice cream dessert).  In all fairness, I helped Dee Dee eat the Mortal Sin, not the other way around.  After this "near death" experience, I am feeling OK.  Evidently, my liver is still in top drinking form, although my acid reflux was NOT happy with me.  So, back off the wagon!!

Food-wise, things have been going well.  I'm on track to loose 25 pounds by June 29, 2009.  ROFL....  Yea, I don't see that happening, but we'll see.  I baked bread last week, which got me excited!  Home made bread is da bomb.  I got the ingredients to try Honey Wheat bread, and I'm itching to have a go at it.

That about catches us up!  I am feeling the P90X workouts in my knees (in a bad way) and in my arms and legs.  They are starting to get pumped up!!  I'm almost to the top setting on the Total Gym for pull ups and chin ups.  I'm hoping to graduate to the real chin up bar sometime next month.

I hope everybody is settling down for the big day!  Tis the season after all!!  Y'all be good now.

Wes

Monday, December 15, 2008

An Added Dimension

In the continuing effort to improve my health, I have decided to resume meal tracking, starting today.  I say resume with a light hearted chuckle.  A long time ago, I decided to try meal tracking, only to give it up after a short period of time.  It was just easier to restrain myself and do what makes sense then to actually track every bite I ate.

I renewed my free membership with Calorie Counter.  They are now a part of About.com.   This seems to be a fairly extensive site that I have used before.  I will reserve judgement on the quality of the site until I have had chance to get acquainted with it.

My primary purpose of meal tracking is to come to an understanding of exactly what I am eating and how much.  Not so much to lose weight.  When you sign up for Calorie Counter, it suggests a plan to reach your ideal weight over six months.  My ideal weight is 161.  That means I would need to lose another 27 pounds.  While I am intrigued by this number, I know for a fact that it would be very difficult for me to reach it.  However, that is a challenge I just might like!

I have been going through another bout of insomnia.  Four days of crap sleep, crap eating, crap drinking, P90X, a snoring dog, and I am ready to go postal!!  I am very much feeling the need to withdraw into myself and find my center again.  I might be a little less active the next couple of days while I achieve this balance.

Take care y'all!

Wes

Friday, December 12, 2008

Returning

Some of you guys liked my redneck blog post.  Some of you didn't.  LOL...  It was indeed a challenge to "talk" like that for an entire blog post and remain consistent.  I was somewhat pleased with the results, and I thank you guys for the opportunity to express myself in weird and uncouth ways :-)

I started week two of P90X yesterday.  The first day's workout, consists of arms and shoulders.  That would be pull ups and push ups until your body breaks down into liquid form.  I am still trying to do normal push ups.  My upper body strength is that of a 7 year old.  (Imagine being seven but still trying to push up 180+ lbs).  I do as many normal push ups as I can, then I switch to my knees.  I don't like to sit there an watch.  I am STILL getting this uneasy feeling that I am not pushing myself hard enough.  The pull ups on the Total Gym are going fine.  I much prefer doing 20+ pull ups on that thing, smooth and steady, then the 1-2 I would be able to do on a chin up bar.

Today was my second day of Plyometrics.  I can already tell I am making improvements.  I am not nearly as sore as last time, and I "hung" much better with the instructor, getting the exercises right and resting much less.  Booyah!

Everybody have a great weekend!!  Since I am in the middle of the second week now, no rest for the Wes-man!

Wes

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I Runned Therefore I Ammed

I gotz me a foot pod for my birthday.  Just in case you wuz wonderin, it goes with the Garmin 50.  Now, I got the 50 to replace my heart rate monitor when it broked.  I di'in't need the foot pod, but I gotz it anwayz.  In hind site, maybe I shoulda spent that money on weights and betta resistance bandz afor this P90X stuff.

But I di'in't.

Sose I gotz this foot pod with zero runnin on my schedule.  I think to myself, self...  I just might sneak in a run this week.  and I did too.  At first, I though I might run Wednesday.  It wuz an off day on the P90X schedule.  Second, at the last minute, I decided to run Tuesday night.  It wuz 62 degrees out with thunder boomers on dem way.

I packs up the car and heads over to Hobgood Park.  I gotz me an interior motive.  I wantz to calibrate the foot pod.  I run my first mile with the factory settings and my Garmin 205.  That dang blasted 205 wuz acking funky and wuz off by three hundreds of a mile.  The foot pod wuz off bout the same, but in the udder dierection.

The settins option on the 50 allowed me to calibrate the foot pod to a known distance.  Now, I know the loop at Hobgood is .47 miles.  I checked.  I setz off on mwah second mile doin that calibratin.  I wuz happy to see that the 205 wuz dead on this time.  I runned my mile, set the distance in the fifty, and checked my calibration factor(y?).  It wuz .937 or sumthin.

On my third and final mile, the 205 and 50 matched up purty.  My werk here wuz done.

When I gotz home, I threw the watch on the pewter desk and went to load some laundry.  Yea, we gotz one of those auto magic clothes washin doo-dads.  When I gotz back, all of my data had automagically loaded into my  pewter.  I'd never seen such useful datas a fore.

Me likey!

Wes

Monday, December 08, 2008

Resumed

As in "hitting the play button"...

It was a good weekend.  Cold, but good.  Temperatures were in the forties and fifties.  Saturday, we had clouds.  Sunday, we had sun and wind.  After working seven games of soccer, I felt fully vindicated in taking off three days from P90X.  During my early triathlon training last year, I always trained in addition to my games.  I think now I'm a little older and wiser :-)

The games themselves were rather uneventful.  At least my games were.  I always look forward to these tournaments.  After taking the expected amount of abuse from coaches and parents, I'm always left with a mixed bag of emotions as to why exactly I do these things.  Kind of the same question we ask ourselves at mile 9 of the half marathon during a half iron distance...  But then, like golf, you have that perfect  game (shot) which makes you hunger for more.

Initially, I set the alarm for 6 AM this morning, but I was just too damned tired to get up that early.  I opted to start Legs and Back X after my youngest son left for school.  While this ones was still strenuous, it wasn't quite as difficult as some of the other workouts.  This was a welcome change.  At the end of the day, I feel like I am not pushing myself hard enough, not working hard enough to get to my goals (what ever those are).  This first week, I guess, is more of a get aquainted week.  Next week, I plan to challenge myself even further by focusing and pushing myself harder.

It was great to catch up with everybody!  It sounds like many of us had an exciting weekend!!  The seventh day on my plan is a rest/stretching day.  I'm seriously thinking about using this day for a run.  We shall see :-)

Happy Monday!!

Wes

Friday, December 05, 2008

Paused

This ain't yo mama's yoga class
  -- Me :-)

Back up bright and early yesterday to try out this yoga shiz.  OK.  Maybe not so bright and early as normal.  I get to work from home on Thursdays.  I basically get to workout during the time I am normally driving to work.

I thought the yoga workout was pretty cool.  It WAS really long.  An hour and a half long.  The first part was the hardest.  I did the strength poses, and there was some I couldn't do, even if my arms and legs weren't crying out for mercy.  But you know what?  My sore muscles atest to the fact I push myself hard.  I press the boundaries, but I don't allow myself to go so far as to get injured.  You go ahead and do that crane thingee and the wheel.  I'll just sit here and admire you.  Thank you very much :-)

After strength came balance.  Those postures were less strenuous, but equally fun.  Thrown in the mix here were seven "core" postures that really worked those stomach muscles.  I really enjoyed those.  They weren't like doing sit ups or crunches at all.  The workout wound up with some basic relaxation postures.  I thought, that too, was cool.

By the end of the day yesterday, I could straighten my arms out again.

After giving it much thought, I've decided to put P90X on pause.  I took the day off today.  I just knew that if I did legs and back, there would be no way I could run the pitch this weekend.  No P90X for the next three days.  Refereeing will have to be enough.

Now, I have to decide to:

A.  Pick back up where I left off.
B.  Start over
C.  Start week 2 on schedule.

What do you guys think?  I'm leaning towards A.

Have a great weekend everybody!!  To those who are racing this weekend...  Kick some arse.

Wes

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Balanced

Days two and three of the P90X workout are in the books.  I thought my arms hurt Monday.  Uh uh.  Tuesday was even worse.  It was also the first day of Plyometrics.  I spent over 45 minutes jumping and shookin and jivin.  I even wore my heart rate monitor like it was suggested.  I was flabbergasted when my heart rate shot up into Zone 4.  Unbelievable.  By the time I was finished, I was spent.

As the day wore on, my body got stiff and sore.  My arms and chest hurt and felt swollen.  I could no longer lift my legs up over the dog's gate to get up and down the stairs.  I was lapped by an old lady with a cane in the grocery store.  Sad.  Just sad.  I was deathly afraid of what tomorrow would bring.  I had little confidence in myself.

I slept good though, for the first time since my bingefest began.  I was still pretty sore, but I could move.  My arms were still in some pain.  Fortunately for me, the warm up to Arms and Shoulders X loosened up my muscles enough to exercise.  Everything was proceeding along fine until my resistance band broke.  Thuuuwack!  Yea, not so good.  I was forced to complete the workout with just the heavy band.  This was OK for some workouts.  Not so OK for others.

Three times a week, we do Ab Ripper X.  Its a fifteen minute core workout routine.  I am getting better at this already.  I can't do all the exercises without resting, but I managed to do "a little more".  My core is not nearly as sore as the rest of my body.  I know I have more to give here.

Now, it's early afternoon and my muscles are cryin.  The upper half and lower half of my body is equally sore, in balance.  I'm walking like a seventy year old man, and I can't straighten my arms out without pain.  They tell me by week three, I should start feeling better.  Oh joy :-) 

Tomorrow is Yoga X.  I've wanted to do Yoga for a long time now.  I only hope this one isn't a meat grinder.  I'm not sure how much more my poor arms and legs can give.  Good news is, my mind is still all systems GO(!) for this shiz.  Where the mind goes, the body will follow :-)

Wes

Monday, December 01, 2008

Detached

Daniela 's arms want to fall off after P90X yesterday... Can you find me some new ones? Thanks.
  -- Dani

Things are NOT looking up when this rolls across your computer screen on Facebook.  Dani and I are doing the P90X workout videos, starting roughly at the same time.  She just happens to be a couple of a days ahead of me.  This is her (quite unintentional) way of motivating me :-)  My comment to her was:

Uh, oh!

LOL...  The beer detox proceeded acording to its usual pace.  No beer.  No sleep.  Body has to readjust.  Throw in Thanksgiving.  More liquor and beer, and we are back to square one.  Sunday we detoxed all over, got no sleep, then woke up this morning and proceeded to P90X!

In preparation for this momentous occasion,  I had purchased some resistance bands and a mat.  P90X also calls for a chin up bar.  I opted not to go with the chin up bar as I have a Total Gym, which is a perfectly acceptable alternative.  The chin ups you do on the TG use maybe 60-70% of your body weight, max.

Six-thirty this morning found me in my den, P90X-ing.  Number one son was amused when he came down for breakfast.  The first days torturefest workout called for arms and back.  This consisted of push up routines alternating with resistance routines.  I haven't done more than thirty push ups since I was in the Army (1986).  I started out doing "manly" push ups.  Quickly switched to "girlie" push ups, followed by crying for my mommy.

This workout was followed by a 15 minute Ab X workout.  I did much better here.  Evidently, my core is much stronger than my arms.

I learned somethings.  My upper body strength is pathetic.  I already assumed this.  It is going to take me a while to be able to do the "manly" push ups along with the video.  Heck, I might even need to rename this the P180X :-)  The other thing I learned is that in order to really benefit from this, I need to push myself harder.  I have to build a new CAVE OF PAIN.

The other big issue is I need to reconcile this with training for the ING Georgia marathon.  I really want to run this sucka.  The motivator tells me I should run BEFORE I do P90X.  After today, I believe her!!  My arms feel like they have detached from my shoulders.  I'm sure I left them lying around here somewhere....

Wes