The Chances

How a 250+ Pound Couch Potato Got Healthy

Saturday, July 31, 2010

From Twitter 07-30-2010

  • 03:02:18: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-29-2010: 03:02:26: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-28-2010: 02:03:54: Di...
  • 06:13:17: Wt: 175.4, RHR: 50, BF: 16.7% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 07:29:57: I'm at I-80 & I-5 Interchange (South Natomas, Sacramento).
  • 14:28:14: Why say, "Please advise when these will be ready" instead of, "When will these be ready?" Please advise.
  • 19:59:31: I'm at Food Maxx (6000 Lindhurst Ave., Marysville).
  • 20:08:18: RT @BillCorbett: Our guest bathroom towel. NERRRRRRDS!!
  • 21:11:06: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 207 (kcal). 00:32:40
  • 21:11:53: Completed a workout named Spin Bike. 167 (kcal). 00:20:00
  • 21:38:53: Ran for 32 mins and felt good. Warmup, 3 circuits, 30 seconds per exercise
    Jumping Jacks
    Split Jacks
    Split Sq...
  • 21:40:41: Ran for 20 mins and felt good. Wanted to work out at lunch, but got stifled by attitudes at work. Ended up not taki...
  • 22:41:51: I'm a little touchy right now, my apologies.
  • 22:42:53: New post on my blog: Today's Workouts: No lunchtime workout today. No, I wasn't going to let s**t hit the fan for...
  • 22:53:28: So why is it that the mayor of my gym has been there 20 times in 60 days, I've been there 23, yet I'm not mayor yet? #foursquare @foursquare

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Friday, July 30, 2010

Today's Workouts

No lunchtime workout today. No, I wasn't going to let s**t hit the fan for a second time today. It was all after work, in my new gym.

Oh yeah, here's my new gym. Stare at it, if you like.

Warmup, 3 circuits, 30 seconds per exercise
Jumping Jacks
Split Jacks
Split Squats
Mountain Climbers

Deadlifts, Sets: 7,5,3x115lbs
Swiss Ball Hip Extension and Leg Curl, Sets: 8,6,4x115lbs
Close-grip Bench Press, Sets: 7x95lbs,5x115lbs,3x125lbs
Hammer Curl, 8x(2x25lbs),6x(2x30lbs),4x(2x35lbs)

32:40, 207 calories burned

Then 20 minutes on the spin bike with the Sufferfest, "Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now". Too bad I couldn't do the whole workout, but the child care was closing. What can you do? 167 calories burned, the HRM was malfunctioning so that's an estimate.

Total burned: 393
Calories in: 1497

From Twitter 07-29-2010

  • 03:02:26: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-28-2010: 02:03:54: Did a elliptical workout for 30 mins and felt good. Listen...
  • 05:39:42: Wt: 174.4, RHR: 49, BF: 16.8% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 08:44:28: Change for the good is infectious.

    My nephew Michael is a good kid, friendly kid, but he's historically had a probl...
  • 09:47:01: Get that man a blog!!! Oh, wait.. RT @sacbee_news: What motivates you to exercise outdoors? @SamMcManis wants to know.
  • 14:15:26: Is there a way to filter out people asking how to filter out #foursquare tweets?
  • 14:16:12: OK, CA folk, which mid-training half marathon (or two) should I run prior to #CIM? Anyone?
  • 14:42:31: RT @myqualker: @gchance half marathon... i'm thinking "no"... half-baked alaska... u got a deal.
  • 15:28:51: Come to think of it, @misterfonzie should run the @warriordash for the same reason... WARRIOR BEARDS UNITE!
  • 15:50:15: Ran 3.2mi in 31:21, 9:50/mi ave (9:43,9:48,10:03,9:37), 349 calories burned -
  • 15:51:54: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 100 (kcal). 00:25:00
  • 15:53:54: Updated a workout named 2010/07/29 . 349 (kcal). 3.19 mi.. 00:31:20
  • 15:56:54: Did a weights workout for 25 mins and felt good. Warmup, w/45lb bar
    Overhead Squats
    Good Mornings
  • 15:58:22: Ran 3.19 miles in 31 mins and felt alright. Last night's Body Pump got to me, my legs felt heavy today. Ran 3.2mi in...
  • 16:53:49: Well, look at that... The cross training fairy just put a recumbent bike & a treadmill into the workout room. :-D
  • 17:05:12: I'm at 76.
  • 19:11:00: I'm at Walmart (1150 Harter Rd., Yuba City).
  • 20:01:45: I hope this isn't a bad idea...
  • 21:37:03: Well, that was an adventure. I slammed my son's fingers in the car door.
  • 21:37:35: But he's ok, they were just in the inside, plastic part of the door, not the metal. He's enjoying watching the many colors of his finger.

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Thursday, July 29, 2010

From Twitter 07-28-2010

  • 02:03:54: Did a elliptical workout for 30 mins and felt good. Listened to the rest of the Mike O'Meara Show while on the ellip...
  • 02:04:06: New blog entry:
  • 03:09:34: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-27-2010: 03:02:12: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-26-2010: 03:02:35: Ne...
  • 04:43:52: Wt: 174.2, RHR: 50, BF: 17.1% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 05:09:03: Circuit Traininng (@ Pro Fitness w/ @chefperrault)
  • 06:32:01: I'm at Arco AM/PM (886 Colusa Ave., Yuba City).
  • 08:49:15: I just got an August Calendar email from REI, and no gear sales. WHY, REI, WHY?!?! #fb
  • 10:24:44: Completed a workout named Treadmill Run. 107 (kcal). 1.00 mi.. 00:10:00
  • 10:25:53: Ran 1 mile in 10 mins and felt good. The trainer was late for circuit training this morning, so I ran a mile on the ...
  • 10:28:42: Completed a workout named Circuit Training. 238 (kcal). 00:25:00
  • 10:29:19: Did a weights workout for 25 mins and felt good. Trainer was late for circuit training, so I only got in 25 minutes'...
  • 12:24:38: RT @fark: Russell Crowe is no longer a sex symbol. Could place third in a Ricky Gervais look-a-like contest though.
  • 12:42:45: Ran 5.7mi in 56:43, 9:55/mi ave (9:07,9:06,9:14,9:50,12:28,9:41), 634 calories burned -
  • 12:45:35: Updated a workout named 2010/07/28 . 634 (kcal). 5.73 mi.. 00:56:43
  • 12:51:02: Ran 5.72 miles in 56 mins and felt good. Well, so long perfect runs. Apparently two in arow were too much to handle...
  • 14:08:43: Hey Canadians, help me out here...
  • 14:09:06: A guy at work was just in Canada fishing over the weekend, almost died due to diabetic shock, found out he's Type 1...
  • 14:09:31: They told him that he needs to get an American blood sugar monitor because the Canadian metric system is different than the US metric
  • 14:09:34: Wha?
  • 14:10:39: AHA! Wikipedia is my friend.
  • 14:11:25: "for measurements of blood cholesterol, the units are millimole per litre, whereas they are milligram per decilitre in the United States"
  • 14:11:52: So it's not so much the unit of measure as it is millimole vs. milligram.
  • 14:12:05: Well I suppose it is unit of measure... not so much metric vs. standard :)
  • 14:41:46: RT @runnrgrl: @gchance fuckin canadians.
  • 14:42:55: My wife just called, she's bailing on the gym tonight. I'm still going solo though, I've only burned 1000 calories today.
  • 15:45:54: It's official. I'm registered for CIM 2010. Training starts Monday. #cim @biscuiterie @jose_galvan @sam_mcmanus
  • 16:10:36: Looking at the Pink October 5k results from last year, the guy who teaches my circuit training class at the gym finished in 25:44
  • 16:10:49: I can smoke him. Got to.
  • 18:15:20: I'm at Pro Fitness (424 D Street, Marysville).
  • 20:35:57: I'm at Casa Carlos (413 6th Street, Marysville).
  • 22:11:33: New post on my blog: Today's Workouts: Circuit training this morning. Actually, the trainer overslept, so I ran a...
  • 22:13:29: Did a fitness workout for 1 hour and 16 mins and felt good. My wife was going to bail on the gym, but after I told h...

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Today's Workouts

Circuit training this morning. Actually, the trainer overslept, so I ran a mile on the treadmill before he showed up. 107 calories there.

Then we did circuit training, but only 25 minutes' worth because we had to be done by 6. After our HRM discussion yesterday, what did I do, but leave my strap at work! So I have to estimate the circuit training at 238.

At lunch, I was much slower than I've been the past two days, my legs were a bit sore so I slowed down. I tried to extend my route to 6 miles, but did it on the fly rather than with MapMyRun and ended up at 5.75 miles. Had my heart strap, finally! 634 calories.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - General
Distance:5.73 mi

My wife was going to bail on the gym, but after I told her I was going whether or not she came, she changed her mind. BODY PUMP! GET IT UP! An hour and 16 minutes, burning 451 calories in the process.

Intake: not entirely sure, we ate out for dinner. Probably 2200-2500.
Burned: 1430

From Twitter 07-27-2010

  • 03:02:12: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-26-2010: 03:02:35: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-25-2010: 03:02:39: Ne...
  • 05:46:00: Wt: 175.2, RHR: 48, BF: 16.9% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 06:32:09: I'm at Arco AM/PM (886 Colusa Ave., Yuba City).
  • 12:29:33: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 211 (kcal). 00:40:00
  • 12:30:07: Did a weights workout for 40 mins and felt good. Warmup, 3 circuits, 30 seconds per exercise
    Jumping Jacks
    Split Jac...
  • 12:34:56: Ran 3.2mi in 26:58 (8:19,8:23,8:30,8:29), 8:24/mi ave, 347 calories burned -
  • 12:39:16: Updated a workout named 2010/07/27 . 347 (kcal). 3.21 mi.. 00:26:58
  • 12:42:08: Ran 3.21 miles in 26 mins and felt great. Dear God: Thank you for the beautiful weather we've been having this week,...
  • 15:44:09: I get so tired of the freaking nonsense around this place.
  • 15:44:42: Company owner has an iPhone 3G-S, we just got him an iPhone 4. I set it all up, then gave it to him and said you have the old cables, right?
  • 15:45:05: He said just give me those. I told him that when I go to give his old phone to someone else, I'll need the cables. His response?
  • 15:45:09: That's your problem.
  • 21:05:28: I'm at Pro Fitness (424 D Street, Marysville).
  • 22:42:48: Completed a workout named Elliptical Workout. 300 (kcal). 00:30:00
  • 23:04:47: New post on my blog: Today's Workouts: Today's weight training went pretty well.Warmup, 3 circuits, 30 seconds per...

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Today's Workouts

Today's weight training went pretty well.

Warmup, 3 circuits, 30 seconds per exercise
Jumping Jacks
Split Jacks
Alternating LUnges
Mountain Climbers

Elevated-Heels High-Bar Squat, Sets: 12,10,8x115lbs
Situps, Sets: 12,10,8
Wide-Grip Barbell Curl, Sets: 12,10,8x80lbs
Incline Dumbbell Triceps Extension, Sets: 12,10,8x(2x17lbs)

40 minutes, 211 calories burned

I had another great run today! I dunno about you CA guys (hear me Barey?) but this weather's awesome, I've been having killer runs. Today's was as good as yesterday's, 3.2 miles, 8:24 pace average, 347 calories burned.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - General
Distance:3.21 mi

Mile 1: 8:19
Mile 2: 8:23
Mile 3: 8:29
.2 Mi: 1:44 (8:28)

3.2 miles, 26:58, 8:24/mi average, 347 calories burned

Then wouldn't you know it, I left both my heart rate straps at work. My wife called before I came home from work to tell me that all our kids were spending the night with grandma. Spending the night meant no kids, so I pulled a "let's go to the gym" out of my hat. My wife tried to tell me she was still sick, to which I responded, "Oh ok, you can stay home, but I'm going." We went. :) 30 minutes on the elliptical, I'm claiming 300 calories, and you can't stop me.

Weights: 211
Run: 347
Elliptical: 300

Total: 858 calories burned
Intake: 1545 calories

From Twitter 07-26-2010

  • 03:02:35: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-25-2010: 03:02:39: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-24-2010: 03:02:13: Ne...
  • 04:37:14: Wt: 175.8, RHR: 50, BF: 17.6% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 05:10:03: Body Pump! (@ Pro Fitness w/ @chefperrault)
  • 05:10:03: Body Pump! (@ Pro Fitness w/ @chefperrault)
  • 06:51:58: I'm at Arco AM/PM (1332 Bogue Rd., Yuba City).
  • 08:31:58: Let's start this Monday off with an annoying IT tech support issue, yay!
  • 08:32:27: REAL emails... I got one from the sales guy, sent on his Blackberry: "What is the password for this new phone you gave me last week?"
  • 08:32:46: Me: "It shouldn't ask you for a password for anything, what is it asking you for a password for?"
  • 08:32:59: Sales Guy: "It is asking "
  • 08:33:36: Me: "Why does it want a password, like, are you using the internet, is it asking you for a password to make a call?"
  • 08:33:51: Sales Guy: "Voice mail"
  • 08:34:00: Hellooooooo Monday!
  • 08:52:27: Me: "Is it not letting you edit the resulting Excel file?" User: "What?"
  • 09:07:22: Did a fitness workout for 44 mins and felt good. Still sore from Saturday's hike (stinkin' hip flexors, man, they ge...
  • 09:50:31: I love how @dailymile counts all miles the same in reports. I hopscotched 5 miles last week.
  • 12:33:12: Is @runsaturday down? :(
  • 12:37:10: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 98 (kcal). 00:22:00
  • 12:41:28: Updated a workout named 2010/07/26 . 345 (kcal). 3.19 mi.. 00:26:54
  • 12:48:43: Ran 3.19 miles in 26 mins and felt great. About time I had a good run! I was afraid I'd still be sore after Saturda...
  • 12:54:40: Ran 3.19 mi in 26:54, 8:26/mi ave (8:40,8:25,8:15,8:18), 345 calories burned -
  • 13:29:32: Did a weights workout for 22 mins and felt good. Warmup, w/45lb bar, 3 circuits of 5
    Overhead Barbell Squats
  • 15:40:09: Why does my calorie tracker list chicken breast as "1 breast, bone removed"? Is there a bone-in version I could be eating? #fb
  • 16:33:14: My wife called, she's "not feeling well" and doesn't want to go to the gym. :(
  • 16:37:00: Wow. "hairy celebrity bathtub" did not give the Google Images results I was looking for. Guess I should turn Safesearch on, eh?
  • 17:23:10: I'm at Chevron ExtraMile (2700 Del Paso Rd., Sacramento).
  • 21:14:53: Completed a workout named Body Pump. 202 (kcal). 00:45:00
  • 21:17:37: Completed a workout named Stair Climber. 423 (kcal). 00:45:00
  • 21:19:22: Did a fitness workout and felt good. Another Spartacus viewing session while on the stair climber... actually, I had...
  • 21:39:22: New post on my blog: Today's Workouts: Other than my wife not going to the gym tonight, things were great. I made...
  • 21:40:42: New blog entry:
  • 22:24:34: I just sent this email to my church body:

    Would you like to get healthy (or healthier), have fun, and complete a

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Today's Workouts

Other than my wife not going to the gym tonight, things were great. I made up for the missed gym cardio with home cardio, getting on the stairclimber for episode 4 of Spartacus.

Morning: Body Pump, 45 minutes, 205 calories. I REALLY felt cheated on this one, I should have worked harder.

Lunch: 22 minutes of weight training & a whopping 98 calories.

Warmup, w/45lb bar, 3 circuits of 5
Overhead Barbell Squats
Barbell Squats
Good Mornings
Romanian Deadlifts
Bent-over Rows

Bench Press, Sets: 7,5,3x95lbs
Single-Arm Dumbbell Row, Sets: 8,6,4x(2x35lbs)
External Rotation, Sets: 7,5,3x(2x12lbs)
Crunch, Sets: 20,10,5

This was followed by a FABULOUS 3.2 mile run where I burned 345 more. Everything came together, including the 72-degree, breezy weather, and I nailed an 8:24 pace. In fact, my 5k time was identical to my "official" 5k time a few weeks ago at the Peach Festival 5k.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - General
Distance:3.19 mi

Seriously, look at these splits, I was quite happy with them:

Evening: 45 minutes of stairclimber while watching Spartacus, 423 calories.

Calories consumed: 1798
Calories burned: 1068

From Twitter 07-25-2010

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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Feather Falls 7-24-10

Every time I hike to Feather Falls, I wax emotional about my ill-fated hike in 2003. I realize it gets repetitive, but it must be stated: it was significant. It's also become sort of a fitness indicator for me.

I also realize that I just had the same sort of experience two weeks ago on the Tahoe Rim Trail.

Here's the thing though: I feel as though if I don't share these things, I'll forget. I'll forget how it felt to not be able to do what physical things I want to do, when I want to do them.

That brings us to Saturday's hike.

Shortly after I joined Pro Fitness, they posted a flyer around the gym promoting this hike. Little did they know that this is one of my favorite activities! I put my name on the sign-up sheet as #2 or #3.

As everyone assembled at the gym on Saturday morning, I started to realize that nobody had much hiking experience. Nobody but me had been to Feather Falls, so I became the lead car. A few people tried to name me the hike guide, but I explained to them that the trail was straightforward enough that a guide really wasn't necessary.

Chris, the owner of the club who also teaches my circuit training class on Wednesday mornings, came along. Debbie, the spin class instructor, was the organizer. Among the others were a bodybuilder and his girlfriend, an older woman with her 12-year-old granddaughter, Debbie's 5-year-old daughter, a 17-year-old girl, and a 19-year-old guy who looked to be in great shape. Before we left, Chris told me I could make fun of him as we hiked if I wanted.

At the trailhead, some of them were making fun of me for my gear. The bodybuilder called me "REI Guy", everyone wanted to know why I was carrying walking sticks, and Chris made some comments about my hat. We put on bug spray and sunscreen, I reset the GPS, and away we went.

Debbie wanted to know the opposite direction I've always taken along the trail, which was in the "hard" trail and out the "easy". I told everyone, the word "easy" isn't a good word for it, that "easier" is more appropriate. It's not quite easy, it's just easier than hard!

Once we started down the shorter, but harder trail, it became mostly downhill. I couldn't help myself and just punched on the gas. The signed trail says 3.3 miles, but it's closer to 3, and I decided that I wanted to make it to the falls in an hour.

I stopped to let the others catch up at the Bald Rock overlook, and to tell them about the Dome Trail, which leads to the bottom of the canyon and, if the river is crossable, over to Curtain Falls. The people who were hiking just behind me at that point were the 19-year-old guy, 17-year-old girl, a man I didn't remember when we started but obviously was there, and the 12-year-old son of a couple who met us at the trailhead.

I wish I remembered peoples' names! Everyone was keeping up, but the teenagers were struggling. The girl told me she didn't think it was going to be as difficult as it was. When we finally stopped at the trail convergence (it's a loop with the final half-mile leading to the overlook), we drank fluids, and I asked if everyone wanted to wait for the others. The man said no, let's go onto the overlook, so we did.

We made it to the overlook at 10:30, almost exactly an hour and a half after we started. The Garmin said that our moving time was an hour, meaning that I met my goal! This is the fastest I've ever made it to the falls.

After 10 minutes, a few others made it to the overlook. Everyone was astonished at the beauty of Feather Falls, the 6th highest waterfall in the continental US, and something extremely unusual outside of Yosemite.

After eating lunch and hydrating, Chris polled everyone to see who wanted to go to the top of the falls. Almost everyone wanted to go, except the older woman, her granddaughter, and another woman who had two children. I told them that if they headed back now, we'd meet them on the trail.

Once at the top of the trail, everyone's spirits lifted at the thought of a swim. I'm not sure why this is, but I'm just not into swimming on hikes, so I was the single holdout, while everyone else took a dip.

When Chris took off his shirt, I hate to say it, but his belly was every bit as big as mine. It actually made me feel good to realize that someone much fitter than me struggles with some of the same issues I do! The bodybuilder was reluctant to take his off, because, in his words, he had "moobs". Obviously I'm not alone with my issues!

2.5 hours later, we were ready to head back. I tried to filter some water, but my MSR pump wasn't working. I just used it on the Tahoe Rim Trail, but for some reason, it didn't work now! I had plenty of water in my hydration pack, but the other people didn't.

The bodybuilder started giving people crap, asking them if they wanted to run the entire way back. I'd been thinking of some trail running before, but now? It was on.

Once past the trail convergence, I asked the 17-year-old, do you want to run? She said no, and I said ok, I'm going to see how far I can make it, and headed down the longer, easier route.

I'll be honest though, it wasn't a perfect run by any means. I only ran 1/4 mile or so before hitting a hill, and my heart rate hit 160. I decided that I should slow walk up the hill. For the the next 2.5 miles, I ran down the hills and flats, while I walked uphill when it hit.

After we passed the Bald Rock sign, I was done running. Shortly thereafter, the others in my little group caught up with me. About a mile later, we caught up to the older lady, her granddaughter, and the woman with the two children.

When we were back at the vehicles, once again, it had taken us an hour and a half to hike the trail. It certainly seemed a lot longer! After about 15 minutes, everyone else started coming in.

Come to find out, Chris had only taken about 20 ounces of water. The other people were in similar situations, so everyone was dehydrated. They had some extra water in the vehicles, so they were able to drink plenty. I think next time, they'll bring more.

Overall it was a great trip. I've been sore today in my hip flexors, something that hasn't been a problem before, and I think it's from the trail running. I need to get some trail runners, so if anyone has suggestions, by all means, let me know.

I'm also hoping this isn't the last hike the gym will put on. It was great fun.

From Twitter 07-24-2010

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Saturday, July 24, 2010

From Twitter 07-23-2010

  • 03:02:22: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-22-2010: 03:02:24: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-21-2010: 03:02:25: Ne...
  • 04:38:41: Wt: 175.4, RHR: 53, BF: 17.1% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 04:54:36: Zoom daddy, zoom zoom daddy, zoom daddy daddy, zoom daddy, zoom daddy, zoom zoom. #fb
  • 05:09:49: I'm tired.. Spin class will wake me up. (@ Pro Fitness)
  • 06:35:48: I'm at Tower Mart (4217 Arboga Rd., McGowan Pkwy, Olivehurst).
  • 08:49:44: I forgot the cultural differences between Twitter & FB again. I said something rhymed with bukkake on FB, now I'm catching grief.
  • 08:51:56: I did, however, get called a "pornographic niche whore". So I got that goin' for me.
  • 08:56:29: Ran for 40 mins and felt good. We've reached the point in the week where I think to myself mid-workout, "Sunday's re...
  • 12:55:08: OK I'm questioning the veracity of the Old Man Running Powertrack plugin's calorie calculator.
  • 12:55:25: Same route, two days in a row. Day 1 is 10:36/mi, Day 2 is 9:35/mi... both say I burned 344 calories.
  • 13:31:09: Ran 3.2 mi in 30:24, 9:35/mi ave. (8:59,9:02,10:45,9:24), 344 calories burned -
  • 13:35:47: Updated a workout named 2010/07/23 . 344 (kcal). 3.18 mi.. 00:30:24
  • 13:40:09: Ran 3.18 miles in 30 mins and felt good. Ran 3.2 mi in 30:24, 9:35/mi ave. (8:59,9:02,10:45,9:24), 344 calories burn...
  • 13:47:55: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 212 (kcal). 00:31:20
  • 13:50:31: Updated a workout named Spin Class. 391 (kcal). 00:40:54
  • 13:51:41: Did a weights workout for 31 mins and felt good. Warmup, 6 circuits, 30 seconds per exercise
    Jumping Jacks
    Split Jac...
  • 18:13:10: I'm at Chevron ExtraMile (2700 Del Paso Rd., , Sacramento).
  • 19:45:47: Everybody welcome a good friend and great athlete, Derek A! Dude's an animal at the gym, and even though he focuses...
  • 19:56:55: Oh man. I should do a #FF, huh?
  • 20:00:44: RT @fark: Robot walks 14 miles. Proclaimers unimpressed.
  • 21:59:34: That's it, I'm going to bed. Feather Falls tomorrow!

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Friday, July 23, 2010

From Twitter 07-22-2010

  • 03:02:24: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-21-2010: 03:02:25: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-20-2010: 03:02:21: Ne...
  • 05:48:25: Wt: 175.2, RHR: 47, BF: 17.1% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 06:35:32: I just ousted @ivieanne as the mayor of Arco AM/PM on @foursquare!
  • 08:32:16: I like my new gym bag. That is all. :)
  • 08:32:46: It sort of reminds me of the golf cart that Al Czervik had in Cadyshack
  • 08:39:24: Listening to Pandora, Hotel California came on, and Pandora decided to tell me that Mr. Hogan, my HS guidance counselor, likes the song. #fb
  • 10:02:48: OK everyone, follow the greatest guitarist in the history of Mike, @myqualker
  • 10:39:13: Purely intentional, but funny nonetheless... unfortunate misspelling in a FB greeting: "Happy birthday. Hoe you have a wonderful day."
  • 15:08:46: User trying to change her Thunderbird signature. New version of Thunderbird didn't have File->Save As->HTML so she needed help...
  • 15:09:24: Thunderbird did, however, have File->Save As->File. User hadn't attempted that option at all.
  • 15:09:47: Come to think of it, when user didn't see Save As->HTML, she hit the wall and came and got me.
  • 15:10:16: Yes, I say came and got me. She didn't call. Nor did she care that I'm EXTREMELY FRACKIN BUSY.
  • 15:25:47: User walks up. "Can you change my printer?" Why couldn't this be emailed?
  • 15:52:39: We'll do this. Not good enough? How about this. No? What about this. Uh-uh? We're out of options here, moron.
  • 17:17:33: ran 3.2miles on RunSaturday -
  • 17:24:33: Updated a workout named 2010/07/22 . 344 (kcal). 3.18 mi.. 00:33:39
  • 17:27:40: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 144 (kcal). 00:31:20
  • 17:30:07: Did a weights workout for 31 mins and felt great. Warmup, w/45lb bar, 3 sets of 6
    Overhead Squats
  • 17:33:53: Ran 3.18 miles in 33 mins. Today I was feeling more sore than I expected after last night's Body Pump workout, my le...
  • 18:25:47: I'm at Chevron ExtraMile (2700 Del Paso Rd., Sacramento).
  • 18:25:47: I just ousted Richard as the mayor of Chevron ExtraMile on @foursquare!

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

From Twitter 07-21-2010

  • 03:02:25: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-20-2010: 03:02:21: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-19-2010: 03:02:09: Ne...
  • 04:23:44: Wt: 175.8, RHR: 47, BF: 17.1% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 05:04:08: Circuit training... (@ Pro Fitness w/ @chefperrault)
  • 07:22:35: Awesome dude! RT @sactreasurehunt: Congrats: @chefperrault RT winners, 2 @SacMtnLions tixs!
  • 07:27:56: REI just made my day, 25% off one REI-branded item! #newworkoutbag #fb
  • 07:31:43: I never thought I'd be told something like this, but a guy in the circuit training class with me at the gym called me an animal. Repeatedly.
  • 07:31:57: Is it wrong for me to take glee in a guy who vomited telling me I'm an animal?
  • 07:37:10: I am NOT an animal! I am a HUMAN BEING! #fb
  • 09:19:51: Do you guys know of a 6-week Couch to 5k plan? The ones I'm finding are 9 weeks.
  • 09:20:08: Not that 9 weeks won't work, it;
  • 09:20:10: ack
  • 09:20:19: It's just that the Pink October race is in a little over 6.
  • 10:08:31: "Hello, thank you for calling REI. Our store is currently closed. Our hours are 10am to..." The clock says 10:08. #fb
  • 12:18:08: "Is item #747933 in stock?" "It'll take me a minute, I have to go find a computer."
  • 12:18:33: WTF is wrong with REI today? Their auto attendant said they were still closed for an hour after opening...
  • 12:18:49: Then when someone finally answered, the first thing out of their mouth was, "Please hold I'm with another customer"
  • 12:33:43: First, I forgot to turn on the Garmin for a mile. Then my boss called at mile 3. Meh. Ran 4.5miles -
  • 12:39:47: I just got a call. The user just changed her default webpage, now she can't work because she CAN'T FIGURE OUT HOW TO GET TO OURS.
  • 12:42:15: Ran 4.5 miles in 45 mins and felt good. First, I forgot to turn on the Garmin for a mile. Then my boss calls at mile...
  • 12:49:29: BOOM!!! Scam NARROWLY averted by my keen IT skill mastery. #fb
  • 12:49:52: Company trying to trick me into ordering supplies from them. The old "the price of your toner is going up tomorrow."
  • 12:50:10: I asked, "What company are you with?" and <CLICK> he hung up.
  • 14:33:06: Did a weights workout for 42 mins and felt great. Last week before the Wednesday morning circuit training class, a g...
  • 14:35:12: Completed a workout named Circuit Training. 338 (kcal). 00:42:55
  • 14:38:40: Completed a workout named 2010/07/21. 552 (kcal). 5.40 mi.. 00:55:46
  • 16:23:00: Fender bender with a mighty-bendered fender, speedwalker cutting across parking lots, bike rider, woman jaywalking w/stroller #seenonmyrun
  • 18:07:37: Body Pump with my wife. Go, Angel! (@ Pro Fitness)
  • 20:16:17: I'm at Walmart (1131 North Beale Rd., Marysville).
  • 21:39:36: Completed a workout named Body Pump. 394 (kcal). 1:11:27
  • 21:42:22: Did a fitness workout for 1 hour and 11 mins and 27 secs and felt great. Took my wife to the body pump class and she...
  • 22:03:16: New post on my blog: We're All Role Models: I've been going to the Wednesday morning circuit training class at my ...
  • 22:04:49: New post on my blog: Today's Workouts: Alright, workout summary...5:15am Circuit Training, 43 minutes, 338 calorie...

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Today's Workouts

Alright, workout summary...

5:15am Circuit Training, 43 minutes, 338 calories
Lunch run, 5.42 miles, 56 minutes, 552 calories
6:30pm Body Pump, 1:11, 394 calories
Total: 1286 calories burned

My wife appears to have survived Body Pump this evening. She had difficulties with a few of the exercises, which is to be expected, but she did better than even she expected.

We're All Role Models

I've been going to the Wednesday morning circuit training class at my new gym for the past 3 weeks. Last week, a very large, morbidly obese guy was sort of wandering around the gym, but appeared to know the trainer. Chris, the trainer, was telling him hey, great to see you finally back, and asked if he would make it to the class sometime. He said yes, and I didn't think too much of it.

I didn't think much of it, that is, until this morning, when said guy was in the class, ready to go! I shook his hand and introduced myself, he said his name was Chris (hard to forget his name), and that he was worried about the class. I told him there was nothing to worry about, and how happy I was to see him there because up until now I was the only male member of the class!

Of the three circuit training classes, this was the most intense I've been to. I'd thought that perhaps Chris, the trainer, was targeting me in particular because I was a guy, since I was the only guy there. That actually couldn't be farther from the truth, and this morning I slowly came to realize that the trainer was actually assessing peoples' strengths and weaknesses, and adjusting his reactions to them accordingly.

With the guy who came to the class, he was EXTREMELY helpful. When he saw him struggling with burpees, he told him to rest. The guy kept saying that he was fine, and Chris the trainer said no, rest. Get some water, grab a towel. Rest for 60 seconds, you're just starting out.

After the burpees, he got onto the chest press machine next to me, and uttered words I never thought anyone would ever say to me: "Greg, you're an animal!" What? I may be a lot of things, but no way on earth am I an animal in the gym. I struggle and see everyone else, wishing I could be as fit, look as good in gym clothes as they do.

Then it dawned on me that I was one of THOSE people to Chris, the guy coming to circuit training for the first time, and while I was glad he was there as another guy, HE was glad I was there as someone to look up to! It was a strange position to be in, but I switched my mode of thinking to what we always say here.

We're examples. We may not think so, and we may not feel that we are, but for every person we look towards who's more fit than we are, there are people looking to US in the same way. Call it an epiphany, but this was major for me.

Early on in the class, Chris the workout partner went off to the bathroom, and I found out later that he was actually throwing up in there. This guy may have been struggling, but he certainly was giving his all. In the time I've been working out, I've come close, but never thrown up mid-workout.

When the class was over, I told him a little bit about my history and journey towards weight loss & fitness. I asked him how tall he was, and he said 5'8", I told him I was 5'6.5" and was once over 250, and that while it's been a long journey from 2005 until where I am now, it's been well worth the journey.

From Twitter 07-20-2010

  • 03:02:21: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-19-2010: 03:02:09: New post on my blog: From Twitter 07-18-2010: 03:02:41: Ne...
  • 05:48:08: Wt: 175.8, RHR: 49, BF: 17.5% #myhealthstats #fb
  • 06:37:52: I'm at Arco AM/PM (886 Colusa Ave., Yuba City).
  • 09:45:29: Oh, hi, user. I just dialed a phone #, but let me hang up, because you're STANDING OVER ME WAITING.
  • 10:50:58: Step ups & deadlifts? NOOOOOO! #sniffle
  • 13:13:45: Had a nice run, but had some bluetooth issues late in mile 3. 3.2mi in 33:48, 10:37/mi, 346 calories burned -
  • 13:16:22: Updated a workout named 2010/07/20 . 346 (kcal). 3.19 mi.. 00:33:48
  • 13:19:36: Ran 3.19 miles in 33 mins. Had a nice run, but had some bluetooth issues late in mile 3, ended up walking 1/4 mile. ...
  • 13:23:46: Did a weights workout for 33 mins and felt good. Warmup, 3 sets of 6, 30 sec each
    Jumping Jacks
    Split Jacks
  • 13:24:47: Completed a workout named Weight Training. 212 (kcal). 00:33:09
  • 14:05:43: This is getting REAL old. I came back to my desk, someone was WAITING for me.
  • 14:05:59: I said, "If you leave a voice mail, I'll call you right back." She said, "Yes, but I was heading this way anyway." ???
  • 14:37:23: Huh. HTC Hero can't even be ordered due to high volumes of sales.
  • 17:18:53: I'm at 76.
  • 21:21:37: I'm at Arco AM/PM (886 Colusa Ave., Yuba City).

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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

From Twitter 07-19-2010

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Monday, July 19, 2010

She went to the gym!

My wife Angel decided to join the gym, so last week, we got her signed up. Today was her first visit, which made me extremely proud!

This morning was my 5:15 Body Pump class. It was a whole new program today, with some added kick-butt maneuvers. I was doing great until I accidentally came down on my knee and broke open my sore again. Isn't it always the way? The rash is almost gone though, so I can't complain too much. 49 minutes, 203 calories burned.

Then at lunch, it was time for weight training, which went way too fast today. I need to figure out how to supplement short workouts!

Warmup, w/45lb bar, 3 circuits of 5
Overhead Squats
Good Mornings
Alternating Lunges
Romanian Deadlifts
Bent-over Rows

Incline Dumbell Press, Sets: 5,6,5x(2x35lbs)
Neutral Grip Dumbell Row, Sets: 5,6,5x(2x45lbs)
Scaption, Sets: 5,6,5x(2x30lbs)
Incline Lower Trap Raise, Sets: 5,6,5x(2x12lbs)

20:09, 93 calories burned

After the workout, I ran. Obviously, it didn't go as well as the 5k on Saturday, but it was later in the day, and I most certainly wasn't racing.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - General
Distance:3.18 mi

Mile 1: 9:08
Mile 2: 9:10
Mile 3: 11:15
.17 mi: 1:48 (9:45/mi)

3.17 miles, 31:20, 9:50/mi, 344 calories

My wife decided she wanted to try the pilates class as her first workout, so I busted my butt to get home in time to take her over there. The kids were excited about going into the play area, and both girls met me at the car.

She had a decent pilates class, and said she was sore. I told her that she was going to be really sore in the morning. I'm extremely happy she finally decided to go, plus it lets me go to the gym in the evening, we have the kids with us, and my wife doesn't feel like I'm not spending time with her.

While she was in the pilates class, I got onto the stairmaster for 45 minutes. This one was a newer style than the one I have, with handles to hold and independent pedals for left & right. In fact, in order to stand high up on the machine, you have to be pedaling at a good clip. I managed to burn an additional 415 calories.

That makes 1055 calories for the day. Now I'm ready for bed.

From Twitter 07-18-2010

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Sunday, July 18, 2010

TRT: Kingsbury Grade to Big Meadow 7-10-10

In another of the training hikes leading up to Mt. Shasta, last Saturday I had the pleasure of hiking the Tahoe Rim Trail segment between Kingsbury Grade and Big Meadow. I did this hike once before three years ago, and much of this report will be comparing the two.

Long, long time ago, I can still remember...
In 2007, Tod from the Sacramento Meetup Group started scheduling Tahoe Rim Trail hikes, two weeks apart, with the goal of finishing the trail. I had already lost weight and had started a healthier lifestyle, with hiking being a primary tool for getting fit. In my experience, it started to become a healthy cycle: I wanted to do progressively more difficult hikes, but in order to do so, I needed to be better fit. By doing more difficult hikes, I was becoming better fit.

Another thing I strongly believe in is having well defined goals, short term and long. I always try to be working towards something, and the Tahoe Rim Trail fit the bill.

That isn't to say I was fit. I believe the term would be fitter. Certainly, I had lost weight, and in the process, become healthier and fitter than I was before. The thing is, I did no physical activity prior to getting started, so the reference point was small.

To say I had a tough time of it would be an understatement. While I've since hiked the entire Tahoe Rim Trail, my first time on this segment was only my second TRT hike. I was capable of hiking 23 miles at once, but wow, was it ever difficult.

Not so this time around.

Miles 1 to 5
Of all the odd places to start a hike, this one began underneath a ski lift at Heavenly Ski Resort. In fact, it didn't even start on a trail, it looked more like a 4x4 trail. On further inspection, it was obvious that we were hiking on the ski run.

As a ski run, of course, it was pretty steep. As with most sections of the Tahoe Rim Trail, it begins pretty steep until it gets up to the rim, then becomes a steady up & down the rest of the way until the final descent. About 3 miles in, we hit our first heavy sun exposure, and an amazing view of the Carson Valley.

We had plenty of time to see this view, being greeted by about 20 switchbacks, all leading straight up, with full exposure to the sun. We were still pretty close to Heavenly as well, because we could see the power lines that keep the ski lifts running.

At the top of the switchbacks, Tom, the person in the lead, told me to go ahead and pass him if I wanted. I took the opportunity and decided to just push the pace for as long as I could.

Miles 5 to 10
This was the first real indicator that I was in much better shape than I was the first time around. I increased my pace to about 3mph, and felt fine as I hiked along. From time to time I would look behind me, and most of the group except for one or two people were far behind. A few times I even stopped to let them catch up, then moved forward at my previous pace.

By now, the trail had more or less leveled off, and with exception of a few hills, was a pretty easy portion. A few people on bikes passed us going the same direction we were, while a few runners approached in the opposite. One girl was running with a dog, a hydration pack, but nothing else for gear.

At approximately 10 miles in, we reached Star Lake.

Star Lake
Star Lake was one of the highlights of the entire Tahoe Rim Trail on my first time on this segment three years ago. It has plenty of shore for a lunch spot, yet it's far enough in so the people you meet there are serious about the trail.

When the other people in our group arrived, they told me we were going at a pretty good clip. This made me happy! Seriously, a few of the people were those I had hiked with before, who at that time had been far ahead of me on the trail. For them to tell me we were going fast confirmed that I had improved.

The bike riders who had passed us earlier were taking their lunch here as well, and we talked for some time with them about the trail. The speed record for the TRT came up, and one of the riders commented that the record holder for the Pacific Crest Trail was averaging 40 miles per day. I still think there's a speed you reach where you're busier finishing the trail than you are absorbing the scenery.

The time we'd allocated prior for lunch was 30 minutes, but we arrived 20 minutes before the projected time. We ended up spending more like 45 minutes there, chatting, and doing hiking chores like eating, pumping water, pouring scree out of our boots. Fun stuff.

Once we were satisfied with our rest, we went on our way.

Miles 10 to 15
Almost immediately after leaving Star Lake, we hit more serious elevation gain, which in turn slowed the progress. While the going was slow, I still felt great, without near the fatigue I experienced years before.

At one point, I left the trail to use the bathroom, and felt good enough to jog to catch up with everyone else. The tiredness I felt was more general soreness in my feet instead of my legs.

A hiker came towards us wearing a khaki jumpsuit that looked somewhat like this:

I said, "I didn't know the Dharma Initiative had a presence out here!" He didn't get the reference, and gave me a confused look. At least I tried, right?

Miles 15 to 20
I realize my mileages are off, since I'm just going from memory, but around mile 15 we reached the trail that led up to Freel Peak, a spot I'd just been hiking in the week before. Someone we met on the trail agreed to take our picture as a group.

One person had originally planned to hike to the top of Freel Peak and back, but wisely chose to stick with the group. We still had almost 10 miles to go, and by avoiding the peak, she was able to finish the hike strong.

Armstrong Pass provided another resting point. Again, this was a spot we had been at the week before, only this time we were headed the opposite direction on the trail. We were heading into the homestretch.

Just as fatigue was starting to set in, and we were all whining and complaining about how we were ready to leave the trail, we reached another part of the trail I remembered fondly. In fact, on my original hike of this segment, I was barely able to stay on my feet, and the sight of this hill kept me going. This time, it was just a welcome sight and memory.

There was a hill of which the trail went straight through, covered with all sorts of yellow, purple, red, and white wildflowers. On the original hike, you could smell the aroma of the flowers on the approach, but this time, it was more visual. Nonetheless, it was without a doubt the best part of the trail.

The trail led around the hill, leaving at least 1/10 of a mile or more of color. Mike, the organizer of the Meetup group, mentioned that this would be a great beginner day hike, going from the Big Meadow end of the trail to the hill, making a much easier, 8-mile round trip hike. I strongly agree!

Mile 20 to Mile 23
Just past the flower-covered hill, the remainder of the hike flattened into several meadows.

Even though it was flat, it was easily the longest part of the trail! We were tired, grumpy, and after 12 hours, mighty hungry. I vividly remember this part of the trail as a race with the darkness in my prior hike. I had a headlamp, but the people hiking with me before were worried we wouldn't make it back before dark.

Once again, not so this time. Was I tired? Absolutely, but I didn't feel like I was about to drop, or fall asleep on my feet. I was tempted to jog the rest of the trail to make it go faster, but knew it was best not to.

In 2007, with the darkness threatening, we reached a fork in the trail that I found pretty unique. One direction went 2 miles to Big Meadow.

While the other went 1 mile to the highway.

The leader of the hike in 2007 made the executive decision to take the 1-mile path to the highway, then let the others pick us up later. At the time, I was extremely upset at the decision, but I could still understand why it had to be done. I was also extremely tired, and wasn't in the mood to argue.

Of course, this time around, we took the 2-mile route, and the sadistic trail makers started taunting us. The trail wound around within view of the highway, giving us the false sense that we were finishing. On occasion, the trail would wind around and go the opposite direction of the highway, then wind back and head towards it. Each time, we thought it was time to finish, and I swear, this had to be the trail makers' intent.

In the end, I was tired, but not completely exhausted. We still had 45 minutes before it was completely dark. We ate the rest of our food while waiting for the car shuttles to pick us up, and at 9pm, we were ready for the drive back to Sacramento.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Cross - Other
Distance:22.83 mi

From Twitter 07-17-2010

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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Marysville Peach Festival 5k

A week before the Avenue of the Giants Marathon in May, I ran the Run Drugs Out of Town 5k in Yuba City. It's amazing how some memories can stay while others disappear, because I didn't remember what my time was.

Today was the Marysville Peach Festival 5k in Marysville, and after the race, I looked up my time for my last 5k, the Run Drugs Out of Town.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - Race
Distance:3.08 mi

I wasn't expecting to do very well in today's race. As far as running is concerned, while I've been working on maintaining base mileage, I haven't worked on pace at all. Each run has been at a comfortable pace, not pushing myself much, and with the heat, I've purposely been running slower.

Then again, I've been going to the gym regularly. The schedule I've been following has short workouts of approximately 30 minutes, leaving the rest of my lunch hour to run. That happens 4 days a week, with a 5-mile run in the middle. I've also been going to gym classes 3 mornings a week before I leave for work, and last week I took one of the classes in the evening after I got home. All told, it's been about 8 hours of workouts per week.

This morning I had a horrible time getting up. The race was at 8am, I had the alarm set early, but I didn't get out of bed until almost 7:30! At least the Silver Dollar, where the race started, is nearby.

Unlike the Bok Kai 5k in March, this race started on the road in front, adding another hill. The route went up and over the levee once, around Riverfront Park, up the ramp to the 5th Street Bridge, then onto the bike path for about a quarter mile before turning around and coming back. The levee, bridge ramp, and bridge itself made it more difficult a course than Run Drugs Out of Town.

As the first mile started, out the gate I was running at about an 8:30 pace. Coming off the levee, my pace quickened as I settled into about an 8:15 pace. It felt great, but I did wonder if I could hold it.

Mile 2 went just as well, and I started to think I might have a chance to PR. My 5k PR is 25:09, and I was completely surprised I even had a chance, given the type of running I'd been doing.

I hit 25 minutes with a quarter mile left, and it was obvious to me that I wouldn't get the PR. Even still, I was running better than I've run in the two months since the marathon.

See the activity on RunSaturday
Type:Run - Race
Distance:3.16 mi

Mile 1: 8:20
Mile 2: 8:10
Mile 3: 8:12
.1 mi: 1:22 (8:02/mi)

3.17 miles, 26:02 Garmin (26:09 gun), 8:13/mi ave, 359 calories burned

But how about those times? My Garmin distance was a little less for the Run Drugs Out of Town than this one, which was a little bit long. After adjusting for the distance variances, which would amount to seconds anyway, my times were almost identical.

What that also means is that I'm finally back in the same shape I was in just prior to the last marathon. I might not have been running fast, but I've been putting in the mileage, bit by bit. Last week I ran 21 miles in slower distances with more runs.

My goal is to continue the base mileage and gym workouts so that when marathon training starts in August, my fitness level will be high. With that as a beginning, it should be a great training cycle after Mt. Shasta!