Monthly Archives: January 2010

Small classes

The past two night of Strength, we have had some small classes, and tonight Brad didn’t even show up!  Alright, he was somewhere else, teaching, so he is forgiven…this time!

I had a breakthrough tonight in terms of my squats.  I’m nowhere near where I was before weight-wise, but I understand now the difference between how it should and shouldn’t feel, and how one should do it properly, or as properly as I can I guess with my back.  I could actually feel the difference.  If you hold the weight a little lower down your back, you can actually “sit” into the squat.  This makes your abs work harder, and takes the stress of the back (who knew!).  So, what I did, was I stayed at a lower weight tonight, worked 8 sets in of 5 each, and it felt good.  A few times I noticed that I would be getting off track, and then I could feel when I pulled myself back into posture.  It was a pretty good night, all in all.  Got some floor pushups in too.  Chipping away at it.

On another note, I’m still plugging away at creating my leadership seminar. Things are coming together there too.

On yet another note, I often wonder what it takes to make someone snap?  Where does the impetus lie?  I was having a conversation today with a friend about her recent demise of her husband losing his mind, and since she was afraid for her safety and that of her children, she had him put into a hospital.  And now, everything is her fault.  He’s medicated an looking for monetary support, barely sees his children….It’s a sense of deja vu, as I had another friend recount nearly the exact same story to me last summer.  My question(s) is this: What the hell is going on?  Where the heck does this kind of behaviour come from?  You would think that after years of reading psychology books, talking with friends, studying people, that I would have some wicked insight (!)…sadly no.  I really have no idea.

My best thought on the subject is this: deal with issues as they happen.  Get everything out in the open.  Don’t carry guilt with you.  Kill the monster before it kills you.  Other than that, I got nothing.


What about last night?

With my pulldowns, every week I’m moving ahead slowly.  Did my 10 sets of 4 at 95lbs, and moving on to sets of 5 next week.  By February, I’ll be at 100lbs!  Yipee!   Tried to do deadlifts last night too…yeah, not such a great idea.  The weight felt like it was permanently magnetized to the ground.  I had to scale way way back to 65lbs.  I did get abot 10 sets of 5 in, so that was good for volume.  Going to have to keep chipping away at it.

Helping my friend with some meal planning too, based on what I did.  It will be interesting to see how that works for her.


A day off….unscheduled.

Sometimes, everyone needs one.

I woke up this am, ready to get up and get to Greco….and then I thought….nope.  It’s looking like a sleep in day.  I did a pretty good workout last night – hit the squats again that I was having trouble with on Monday and got to between 70-75lbs, 4 sets sets of 5.  Going to keep working on getting that back up.  My back was a bit tight afterwards, but otherwise, the little sleep in this am did it some good I think.  Hit the pushups mostly from the floor with 4 plates to lower down to – 2x10lb, 2x5lb.  I’m working now about 5 inches off the floor.  Then I worked on a few reverse lunges, interspersed with more pushups.  Total pushups – 50.

Afterwards, the 3 pieces of greasy pizza that I had, and the 1/2 pint of Guinness, probably didn’t help my workout, but I think it has restored some energy today….time to get going.


a small setback :(

On January 6th, I was able to bench 85lbs….tonight, I had to dial it back to 80lbs.  On the 6th, I even did 2 reps at 90lbs….I’m wondering why the setback? Is it because I did L&F last night, and coming back after Christmas I was more rested?  I’m wondering if I should be eating more to replenish?  Not sure.  I will try bench again in a few weeks and see where I’m at.

I didn’t get to pushups tonight, so I will be getting to them later.  Do them on my own.

On to Friday!


The Buried Life & one year of Personal Training….

I’m coming up to my one year anniversary of PT sessions soon, working with Brad, making slow progress towards some pretty lofty goals in my personal training regime.  I’ve asked him to provide me some feedback on how he thinks I’m doing.  One of the things I’ve learned this year while on my leadership journey is to ask for feedback without taking it as criticism.  It is what it is.  Take it, use it, drop it, move on.  It is someone else’s opinion of the situation.  It can make a difference, or make no sense.  Whatever someone tells you, listen.

Something else I was looking at today – the website for the new MTV show, The Buried Life.  It looks like it’s going to be a pretty cool show.  Four guys ask the simple question: What do you want to do before you die?  So, in light of that, I started my “100 wishes” Wishlist…..

Here’s the first 20 or so…in no particular order (other than to number them):

  1. write an Oscar winning movie
  2. win the Nicholl Fellowship (Oscar award)
  3. do an Amazon adventure
  4. get married
  5. have children
  6. write a book
  7. own a property in Ireland and live there part time
  8. produce a leadership seminar
  9. go dog sledding
  10. visit Newfoundland
  11. take the train across Canada
  12. visit my sponsor child, Yennifer
  13. write full time
  14. create a clothing line
  15. become a personal trainer
  16. meet Stephen King
  17. shadow Bryan Murray
  18. live in an old house
  19. take my mom on a trip somewhere
  20. hang out in LA for a month
  21. take singing lessons
  22. take acting lessons
  23. volunteer overseas

So, what do you want to do before you die?

(p.s. I’m currently working on a screenplay adaptation of my friend rob mclennan’s novel – “white“….who knows where that will go!)

(p.s.s. A big hooray for my friend Kim who became a mom (to Delaney) for the first time today – one of the things on her list!)


The wisdom of breathing (from fellow Strength Class participant – Brian)

I’ve had trouble over the past few weeks, at various times, doing various exercises.  I can do a few of something, then I need to take a few deep gulps of air to get through the rest.  When I was working with a fellow tonight, by the name of Brian, on floor presses (where you lie on the floor and press a bar up so that your arms have less range of motion), he noticed that I wasn’t breathing during the actual exercise.  I was also struggling with getting a mere 75lbs up (while I’m benching more).  It’s tough too, because your back is not braced the same way…..anyway….

Brian told me about my breathing, and during the next round, I simply started breathing “properly” during reps.  And guess what?  I was actually able to press the 75lbs for 5 reps, no problem.  Imagine?  Breathing.  Who knew?

What I take away from today is this: when you exert stress on a system without thinking about what you’re doing, you can never get the same potential result as when you are focused and relaxed.

Thanks, Brian!  You rock!

Oh, and I was sorta almost able to do an assisted pull-up!  Just one, but I tested using the black band (had to use two bands before) and this time I made it almost all the way up.  Still working on it, but way further than I was when I started….


Hit another PR tonight!

On the deadlifts, I lifted 90lbs – 3 sets of 5 reps.  That’s a 10lb improvement over last week and after L&F last night!  I rock…..and the humble me will probably get kicked in the pants on Friday.  Single leg raises off a riser, I’m not so good at.  My right foot (the fall from August….guess I should get those xrays checked out soon, eh?) is still bothering me a bit.  Not alot, just a bit.  It’s hard to do anything that requires lots of stability on just one foot, especially my right one, but I keep trying.