Monday, August 31, 2009

Workout routine: Time consuming but very satisfying.

Since starting to workout with my son two months ago, my times in the gym have increased. Many times things come up and I'll miss a workout but this is currently a full week for me:

11:30AM- 30 Minutes at the Gym for Pushups and Abs. (This lunchtime workout my mostly to get me out of the office without going out to eat ever day.
6:30PM- 90 Minutes at the Gym with Josh for Chest and Arms

11:30AM- 30 Minutes at the Gym for Pushups and Abs.
6:30PM- 4.5 mile run with Local running club

11:30AM- 30 Minutes at the Gym for Pushups and Abs.
6:30PM- 90 Minutes at the Gym with Josh for back and shoulders

11:30AM- 30 Minutes at the Gym for Pushups and Abs.
6:30PM- 5-6 mile run with Local running club

11:30AM- 30 Minutes at the Gym for Pushups and Abs.
6:30PM- 90 Minutes at the Gym with Josh for Chest and Arms

0600- Long Run 16-22 Miles

6:30PM- 90 Minutes at the Gym with Josh for Back and Shoulders

Sometimes I just don't feel like going! Tonight was a good example. I ended up working late and didn't get home till 7:30. I knew if I missed it would effect my son as well so we headed out and got our workout in. A free plug for Nike here. JUST DO IT!

This photo was taken of me this weekend at the beach (yes, I skipped several workouts). It was about time for us to leave the beach and get something to eat so I grabbed my shirt and put it on. I didn't realize till later that I had grabbed the wrong shirt. The ADHD shirt I was wearing was my 15 year old sons shirt!

I would have never fit into that shirt 4 months ago. Being an ADHD kid myself, I decided to go ahead and wear the shirt for the rest of the day to celebrate.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

22 Mile training run. FAIL!

Not every day is going to be a good training day. To run your longest training run ever, you need to be on the top of your game. Today was not my day. I set out for a long run before my trip to the beach. I didn't set out to complete a specific distance. I wanted to get running and see how I felt.

The run started out pretty routine and I had a healthy pace which was a little faster than I usually do. I was running on the Mount Vernon trail and my plan was to run out and back to my car. At eight miles I was still feeling good so I headed up into Old Town Alexandria. I made it to the 10 mile turn around point and I was still feeling good so I decided to go a little further to make this my 22 mile training run.

One annoying problem was the shorts I chose. The draw string in them was missing and as I they got soaked with sweat they started slipping off my butt. Very annoying pulling them up every minute or so and it was getting worse. I ended up tucking the shorts into the waistband of my undies. That did a decent job of keeping them up longer at least. (I know, thanks for sharing!)

Around the seven mile marker on the way back I started to feel fatigue in my chest and my back was pretty achy. Them came mile marker six. Mile six is pretty demanding and is almost entirely uphill. I finished it off but that was it for me. I had to start walking at mile marker 5.

So there I was,unable to run anymore and 5 miles away from my car! I thought if I walk for a mile I might be able to run again. Nothing doing. My brain and body had decided running time was over. I managed to run a few hundred meters here and there but that was it.

Those last 5 miles were miserable! Running 17 miles when you're feeling good is so much easier than walking 5 miles when your body has shut down. I snapped this photo soon after I started walking.

So what happened? I'm not sure but these could have been contributing factors:

- Thursday is not my usual long day. I usually run them on Saturday.
- I got started about an hour late so the heat and humidity may have been a factor.
- I could have eaten a little better the night before.
- I could have eating more before I started and have more to eat during the run.

The whole thing is a bit frustrating but I found this quote in my inbox this morning:

Frustration is the first step towards improvement. I have no incentive to improve if I'm content with what I can do and if I'm completely satisfied with my pace, distance, and form as a runner. It's only when I face frustration and use it to fuel my dedication that I feel myself moving forwards.

John "The Penguin" Bingham

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Working out with my son Josh

In July I decided to add my son Joshua to my gym membership. He's 15 years old and I thought it was about time to get him involved in some sort of physical activity other than Nintendo Wii! He's out of school for the summer and spends most of his time playing video games in the basement. Working out takes allot of my time so I thought it would be a great way for us to spend some time together before I leave for Korea.

It's been a challenge for many reasons. First, to incorporate him into my workouts, I end up going to the gym almost every day and sometimes twice a day. Second, he lacks motivation to go and he only goes because I require it. Thinking back, I doubt if I was motivated at 15 so I can't really judge him. He also battles with ADHD and a touch of Aspbergers Syndrome.

It's taken patience but we have stuck with it for over six weeks now working out four times a week. Many times we both get frustrated but then there are times when he will push himself and add more weight on his own. I'll also catch him flexing his muscles and he will admit that he enjoys the results. That makes it all worth while.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Twenty mile run down! On target to meet goals!

This post should catch my blog up!
Workouts are going well. I completed my 20 mile training run with no real problems. I still plan to complete a 22 miler before the Marathon on Sept. 19.

My biggest challenge will be to make my weight of 194 lbs. by 8 Sept. I need to be at this weight to get my Max points and meet my 100% goal. On friday I weighed in at 199! I broke the 200 pound barrier! Oh weight now, not so fast, three days of camping, eating crap and no actual workouts. Back up to 205. SHIT!

I have to stay focused and avoid temptation to meet my goals. Before my PT test, I still have a trip to the beach and a trip to WV for my 25 year reunion. When and where will I do my long runs?? I have to sit down and figure this out. I didn't work this hard to get sidetracked in the last few weeks.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Faster than I have ever been in my life.

July 2009:
I found that I really enjoy running with other people. I have a competitive nature so running with others always pushes me to keep up. During my six weeks at school I was running at the back of the pack and ended up running with the younger crowd by the end of class.

I also decided to join a running club close to my home and ended up running with the Lake Ridge Runners in Woodbridge. A very small group of people but great motivation. I try to run with them at least 3 times a week.

One of the Officers in the office had to take her PT test so I thought I would tag along and see how my running time was progressing. I had not been checking my times so I had no idea where I would be. My last run was 10:19 if memory serves correctly and my goal was to break 10 minutes if I could. A secondary goal was to try and beat 10:45 which was the time my friend Dave recently ran.

I also started ran for the first time in my lightweight fivefingers shoes. Once I got started I knew my time was going to be good and as they called out my time for each lap I knew it was going to be a good run. My final time was 9:41.

9 minutes and 41 seconds to run 1.5 miles. THIS IS THE FASTEST I HAVE EVER RAN 1.5 MILES!


Wondering what else I am capable of?

A check of the weightbot shows I was at 208lbs on 16 July.

Friday, August 21, 2009

The 25 year Trifecta!

After my PT test in may I was really motivated to keep my training up. I routinely fall into the cycle of getting fit, meeting my goal and then letting myself go. Lesson I've learned?


I realized that I was approaching a milestone in my life. 25 years since graduating highschool and 25 years of service in the Air Force. I decided to set my goals high and I called it the 25 Year Tritecta.

25 Year Trifecta Goals:

1. 5 Sept - Attend my 25th High School Reunion at my graduation Weight (195 Pounds)

2. 7 Sept -Score 100% on your Air Force PT test on your 25th Anniversary in the Air force.

3. 19 Sept - Complete the Air Force Marathon at Wright-Patterson Air Force base.

May 2009: Time for the PT Test!

When I finished my time at DINFOS, it was time to take my PT test. I hadn't started lifting weights yet but I had added push-ups and sit-ups to my routine. I had not been timing my runs but I was very confident I would have a good time.

Test results:

1.5 Mile run: Full Points (10 Mins and 19 seconds)

Push-ups: Full points

Sit-ups: Full Points

Overall score: Excellent (can't remember the actual score but it was around 92)

I was pretty happy with that but it also pissed me off a bit. I had max points for everything except my waist size. To get max points for that that Air Force says my waits needed to be 32.5 inches?

32.5 inches? REALLY? I'm 6'2" tall and I haven't had a waist that small since Junior High! I fail to see how having a waist that small will make me healthier.

I did my research and found there is another way. If your BMI is under 25 you can also get full points. At 6'2" I would need to be 194 pounds. Over 25 pounds less that I was at the beginning of May. OK, that was a goal that I could possibly attain.

I was motivated. This was a real turning point for me!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

After six weeks in school I had lost close to 20 pounds and was down 40 pounds since Christmas!

Esprit De Corps and good eating at DINFOS

My six weeks at school at Fort Meade was great for my conditioning. During this time my workouts were just running. I had myself on a very healthy diet conisting of mostly steamed veggies, fruit and good carbs like whole wheat English muffins. I really learned to appreciate fresh vegetables during this time. I took a wok and a bamboo steamer along and just threw a little of everything in there. Onions, Broccoli, mushrooms you name it.

I also discovered the beautiful taste of fresh Almond Butter. Oh man, it's like peanut to the on 11!

I also got to do something I haven't done in a few years. Run with a group of people. It really does make all the difference in the world. I started out at the back of the pack of young officers and NCO's and at the end of the six weeks I was running with them. They were great motivator, I hate getting passed up! Close to the end of the class I was I would do well on my PT test that was coming up. I wasn't concerned with passing at this point. I wanted to kick it's ass.

Monday, August 17, 2009

March 09: Off to DINFOS!

I got a chance to take the Pubic Affairs Qualification Course at Fort Meade Maryland and Jumped at it. It's a six week course that teaches you most everything you need to know to work in the Public Affairs career field.

Up to this time I had Incorporated running and gym trips back into my weekly routine but I know now I would need to step things up a bit. I think I mentioned earlier that my PT test was in March which was incorrect. I would be taking it in may right after the PAQC course. This means I had 6 weeks at Fort Meade to make myself fully ready for the PT test.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

February 2009: Still a long way to go.

I went through my photo library for a photo of me during the time period and only found one. It's blurry but speaks volumes.

Weightbot says I weighed around 245. That's about a 20 pound loss in about a month and a half! This is a fact I've learned. The first 20 are the easiest when you've let yourself go.

New Years 2009!

Around this time I installed an App on my iphone called Weightbot to keep track of my weight. Great App and it allows me to go back and know exactly how much I weighed. Ugh 265... Enough said.

Back to work after the Christmas break and I knew it was time to hit the Gym. Yes, me and a large percentage of the US population in the gym with high aspirations. Unlike most Americans, staying fit is part of my Job. More is expected of you and if you don't meet those expectations, there are penalties. Fear can be a great motivator!

Christmas 2008

This is about my regular routine. I decided to let the festivities continue before I kicked the my workouts into gear. I knew my military PT test wasn't until March so I had time. On December 26th it was time to start working. I stepped on the scale and at 42 years old I was heavier than I had ever been.

Catching up:

I should have stared this blog much earlier so I need to do some catching up.

November 2008:
Working at my new job in Arlington for about 6 months. I was in a bit of a Rut and packing on the poundage! I just couldn't seem to make time to workout and running in the city just didn't appeal to me. Jogging in place until the lights change? No thanks. I was really missing my running route in Old Town.

For some reason I also felt a bit guility about going to the Gym at work. The office was mostly a civilian workforce and the military folks didn't seem to going on a regular basis.

This is a photo of me taken at Thanksgiving with the family.