Sunday, January 11, 2015
Wrapped up last night by taking Meg & Liam to Mugshots for dinner & drinks. Cindy had a headache. Daddy had two Angry Orchard + Mystery Romps. Toasted and thought of and sent good karma to all my friends in Disney, preparing to wrap up their long weekend of running. 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, Full Marathon.
Godspeed, friends, you're in my heart & thoughts!
Maybe IronNerd will be there, next year...
Saturday, January 10, 2015
Something of a sloppy event. Volunteers at registration weren't too insightful with spontaneous questions such as, "Where does the race start?" The city of Biloxi was in the middle of a major overhaul of many of the surface streets making race conditions somewhat sketchy in places. The lone water station was technically staffed, but the person there wasn't handing out water or offering any words of encouragement. And the organizers decided to wrap up the race with TWO loops around their running track. But the after party was good (at least the chicken biscuits were!) and the Kroc Center itself was quite impressive.
My average pace was just under 9min/mile, which included stripping off a jacket and multiple walks to catch my breath. Still fighting off self-destructive thoughts and a constant desire to quit. But average running pace is approaching 8min/min and few (if any?) of the other runners passed me, even as we were approaching the finish.
Overall, still very happy with my improvement and increased conditioning. If only my stupid brain would cooperate!
Friday, January 09, 2015
Which brings up a very important reminder for the 4HB Challenge: The program is based on Tim Ferris' strength, not mine. He's clearly younger and stronger. So the program has to be adjusted DOWN to my strength level .Most of the time it feels like minimizing my abilities. But Tim is a strong sumbitch. And anyone reading this and considering the same program needs to make sure they consider the difference between their abilities and Tim's!
As an aside, the notes on the mat are my own invention. A bit of personal inspiration that gets written right before the workout begins Today's battlecry: Do it!
And it was done.
Monday, January 05, 2015
Running continues to get significantly easier. My times and endurance continue to improve. Very little doubt that all of my improvements are attributable to the program. There is much (MUCH!) happiness with the results.
Some of the highlights of Week 8:
- Monday - Power cleans, pull-ups, and hand stand push ups
- Tuesday - Front & Back Squats + Double Under Practice
- Thursday - 12K run & polar bear plunge
- Friday - Opted to do the WOD at the gym
- Satuday - Sprint drills
Monday, December 29, 2014
Several items of note, thus far:
- Still not sure if this plan could actually get you to 50K. That's 31 miles! And there are very few runs of even HALF that distance in the plan. At least so far. Plus, there's a mental aspect of pushing yourself that far and that long. And there's no discussion at all about fueling before, during, or after long runs. Such knowledge only comes from extensive experimentation. None of which are touched in the program.
- Despite my reservations, my pace is enormously improved. Averaging around 8:45/mile without significant effort. Pushing the pace drops it right at 8:00/mile. But slow and steady is a better choice!
- Did a 10K race (Pass to Bay) and had TWO personal records. 6 miles in 53 minutes and 10K (6.2 miles) in 54:24! Previous 6 mile record was 54min and previous 10K (6.2 miles) was right at an hour! Very VERY! happy with those results.
- Strength and conditioning is a little tricky because my thinking is constantly: don't get hurt, don't get hurt! But after finishing the workout, my thoughts become: should have tried hard, should have done more weight! Frustrating. But the goal IS to remain healthy and injury free.
- During sprint work, it doesn't even feel like running with my own legs. Feels like somebody else's form. Somebody else's legs. Wow!
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Afterwards, the usual folks at the usual drinking spot, but an unusual meal. Ben, owner of Irish Coast Pub. was kind enough to share a portion of his Mother-In-Law's home-made kimchi. Her being a native Korean who buries her creations in mason jars in the ground for up to a year, it was infreakingcredible stuff. Almost TOO hot. Pushed my personal limits on spice. Nearly crossed into "Oh my God, this hurts!" territory. But beer soothed the pain and it was one of the most challenging meals Your Humble Narrator has had in many moons.
Only in South Mississippi can you run 5K with your friends, then enjoy Korean BBQ tacos in an Irish Pub!
Monday, December 15, 2014
Here's an overview of Week 6:
- Monday was an unscheduled rest day, primarily due to work. Didn't help that my posterior felt bruised from a ride the day before!
- Tuesday was pretty brutal. In the morning was some back squats (3 sets of 5) then a series of power cleans and burpees (21/21, 15/15/ 9/9.) And the evening held a 5 mile run, pacing with Amber. She really pushed it at the end and we averaged right at 9m/mile even with 2 or 3 brief walks.
- Wednesday was 300 jump ropes, 50 box jumps, 50 hand release push ups, and 50 knees to elbows. I think we started off by practicing push jerks and split jerks, too. (Should NOT have done most of that based on the next day's training.)
- Thursday was 10 mile trail run! Notable mainly for actually doing it and for multiple falls, including once rolling my ankle and hearing an obscenely loud POP than still (5 days later) is acutely painful at certain angles of movement.
- Friday? Oh yeah, very much a rest day! But soaked in the hot & cold tubs.
- Saturday ended up being just a brief (Occam's Protocol) workout with Liam plus some more soaking.
- Sunday ended up being ANOTHER rest day due to too many projects. And much rest was needed.
Sunday, December 14, 2014
First adventure? Bit of electronic skulduggery at My Parent's House. The "security light" in the back yard recently gave up the ghost. It needed to be replace. Who is going to do it? My 68 year old father? My 66 year old mother? Liam? Nay, nay friends. IronNerd gets to shamble up the slender pole and try his luck.
It unfolds like this: My narrow butt (weighed down with tools and climbing gear) scaling a ladder. My father bracing said ladder and offering advice about securing myself to the pole (God help me!) as well as pseudo-racist electrical instructions ("Black to black, white to white...") for wiring the new light. My son wandering around investigating what's what, shuffling up the ladder to hand me tools, and standing by the breaker box ready to flip the power when Paw Paw Mac yells, so that his father (me!) doesn't get cooked atop a fiberglass ladder from the 80s. Two bungee cords around my waist. And a frayed, ancient rope, too thick to be properly knotted, pretending to bind the ladder to the pole. Not a pleasant process. Much damage done to the blood pressure. Most of the process done one-handed, breath-held, a prayer threatening to come out. With vertigo and an illusion of being far too high commingling in my imagination to obscenely affect gravity in unfamiliar ways. Dad yelling up encouragement. Liam asking how much longer. Dogs swirling frantically. And this is a LOT OF DAMN WORK just to light up a back yard. But eventually, it got done. Then there was much rejoicing and hugs and thanks and reminders of why we moved back: for moments like this.
Murky Waters, for lunch. For those not intimately familiar with the route, it is a straight shot with only a couple of stops and two short turns along the way. Much like His Mother / My Bride, Liam likes to make everything much more complicated than it has to be. He thinks there are rules for everything and needs reinforcement that: everything is okay, he is doing well, and (most importantly) we aren't going to die in a fiery explosion if he makes any small mistakes. But, joking aside, we lived, he listens well, and (with lots of positive reinforcement) he does fine when he relaxes. The resulting lunch was (as usual) in-freaking-credible and the Burnt Ends sammich from Murky Waters is without a doubt one of the top three in the world. Three word review: delicious, delicious, delicious. And that's without washing it down with Mystery Orchid. (Coffee stout + Hard Apple Cider!)
Lynn Meadows. Took Molly as my wingman. (Or is it wingdog?) Slow roll over to the show. Find an illegal parking spot up front. Roll down the window. And wait. Molly sniffing the air. IronNerd tethering his tablet to his cell phone (NERD!) and working on his blog. Oh, the terrible slings and arrows we suffer these days. It's all one long endless Sunday...
...and here comes Meg!
Thursday, December 11, 2014
Today marked a cautious return to that same training plan. No PR's though. (Not gonna happen again!) Slow and steady on The Tuxachanie Trail. Unfortunately it was a solo event as my wingman (LUKE!) tore up his own knee on a run this past weekend (on the same trail!) And the length of the adventure cost me a vacation day. But it was well worth it.
- If you are going to do a 15k+ trail run at 1PM, you should eat more than a protein bar for lunch.
- Never trust the MS Gulf Coast weather to stay cold for very long. Long sleeve running weather can turn into near-shirtless running weather quicker than you'd imagine.
- Nature has an evil trick on trails: holes are easily covered with pine straw. (At 3.5 miles into the run, my right foot found one and something popped in my ankle. Walked off the worst of the pain. But it was sore the rest of the way!)
- The forest isn't full of wildlife like you see in movies. Aside from a lone armadillo sullenly enjoying its lunch, nothing crossed my path or appeared to lurk in the distance.
- Last, but more importantly,you should NOT do hundreds of jump ropes and box jumps the night before your trail run!
Word of advice. Trail running isn't street running. You get beat up on the trail. Back. Knees. Ankles. Calves. They all suffer. Mightily. So my complaints came as no surprise. Around 6.5 miles, my left ankle started acting up. Fortunately, it wasn't horrible. And left to its own devices, my brain would frequently shutup and my body would pick up the pace.
Walked most of the last mile. Still finished just under two hours. Surprised at my pace towards the end. Was rarely struggling to keep breathing. Wasn't really tired. Mainly just sore in the ankles. But NOT in the knees! Thankful for that.
Overall, fun excursion. The trail was great. The weather held up. And so did IronNerd. Though waking up in the morning might reveal a different story...
Monday, December 08, 2014
Here's the breakdown of Week 5:
- Monday - Back Squats (3 sets of 5) then Front Squats & Pull-ups 21/15/9.
- Tuesday - 5.5 miles in 50 minutes!
- Wednesday - 5 rounds of 300 single unders on the jump rope + 25 burpess (44:44!)
- Thursday - 5 rounds of 10 hang power snatches + 30 x 24" box jumps
- Friday - Didn't go right, with work, and ended up being a rest day
- Saturday - Light workout with Liam (Occam's Protocol)
- Sunday - Scheduled Rest Day
Thursday, December 04, 2014
Today, for example, my day was spent getting a new workstation (far left) online. At one point, my desk had three PCs (with three different versions of Windows) straddling SEVEN screens. All controlled by just a single mouse & keyboard. For bonus Dork Points, my convertible laptop and much-beloved tablet are included in the group photo.
For the techno-curious:
- Top two monitors (currently) work off my oldest PC, barely visible as a silhouette under the phone. Something like a Dell 520, from 2005. Runs Windows XP. 4GB of RAM. 70GB drive. Usually handles non-corporate adventures and has Office 2007 for helping users running that version.
- Bottom four monitors currently work off an oldish Dell XPS system, the silver tower under my tablet. Probably refurbished around 2012. Quad core, 64bit, 8GB RAM, 200GB drive, Windows 7. Monitors the data center, handles all corporate adventures, and has Office 2010.
- Currently squatting on the left, under the sad lonely screen, is the New Baby. Sweet little Inspiron with an quad core i7, 16GB of RAM, smoking fast 512GB SSD drive, and (finally) a functional DVD burner. Took me HOURS of updates but it is finally running a fully patched Windows 8.1 with Office 2013. It will replace the Windows XP box and serve as a heavy lifter to do some VM work. Especially a virtualized Windows 10. (Gotta stay ahead of the curve.)
- The laptop is a Dell XPS One that has stolen my heart. (Typing on it right now.) Also runs Windows 8.1. Also has an SSD. And boots from a cold stop to fully logged in within 5 seconds. Love it, love it, love it! Mainly use it for working remotely, and typing out my rants on Tales From The Eye. Great for watching videos, too!
- Of course the tablet is a 2nd generation Nexus 7. This thing will completely change your digital life. Only reason to get on my home PCs these days is to play a video game. Almost everything else done on a regular basis is done on the N7. Ultra portable. Ultra functional. This thing is a game changer.
- Tying all the Windows devices together with screen/keyboard/mouse sharing software: Synergy. Allows me to move across all the screens seamlessly. Could probably run it on the tablet, if needed, since Synergy has a Linux client.
- A keen eye will spot my favorite coffee up lurking amid the packets and LCDs. Something old, something new.
Tuesday, December 02, 2014
So, thanks, Ron! Your nuts were well received at my house! Even the dog has been enjoying a good sniff of them.
Monday, December 01, 2014
Here's the breakdown of Week 4:
- Monday - 400M sprints in the morning that were terrible because of my efforts to shift to the Pose Method of running. Front Squats and Deadlifts in the afternoon that weren't so bad.
- Tuesday - Only one workout with the deceptively difficult Hang Squat Cleans & Push Presses.
- Wednesday - 5 mile run. Not as bad as the 10K the other week. Fairly slow and easy but still managed just over 10min pace.
- Thursday - Couldn't really train but did "play football" with Liam & Tolar & Stewart after lunch. But of a workout with the running and jumping. And Your Humble Narrator actually scored three touchowns!
- Friday - Missed the run (2 x 1mile) but caught the WOD: Power Snatch + 200m rows followed by 600 single-under jumps.
- Saturday - A "Linda" workout that only got half finished. Gym weights handle differently than Crossfit weights and Saturday's workout was awkward and perhaps a bit excessive. But, got it done.
- Sunday - Needed to recover. Felt rundown and fought off headaches.
Thursday, November 13, 2014
Second change of plans: Dad did not need me & Liam to help move the 'fridge. Took off a smidge early. Picked up Kidd Maestro Then, no go. But Liam made the highest school on his Advanced Science test today. So he got to pick dinner. Wanted brisket. Instead, he gets burnt ends! Finest BBQ in South Mississippi. And he finished his sammich first. Of course he didn't have two pints of local brew. But who is counting?
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Started with Coach Aaron and a warmup circuit. Three rounds of: 100m sprint, 10 box overs, 10 kettlebell swings, and 10 ring dips. Then Ollie stretches. Some PVC work. And hamstring stretches with the bands. Cobwebs removed. Ready to work.
Hit the prescribed exercises. 165lbs on the back squats. Bar heavy across sore trapezoids. Focus on breathing. And form. Felt great for 80%. Lots of strength and room to grow. Could have done more. But protecting my spine. Risk adverse these days. No race or reward worth permanent damage.
On to deadlifts and an unexpected PR. Used the lifting straps to take pressure off Frankenthumb. Standard grip. Worked up to something like 265! A record for Your Humble Narrator. And Sara said there was room for at least another forty pounds. But a PR is a PR. More in the future. See above, re: risk aversion.
Very happy. Very excited. Couldn't do these weights last year. Now they're comfortable. Consider that a victory.
Stay healthy, Jon. Stay. Healthy!
Monday, November 03, 2014
Sunday, November 02, 2014
But what are you going to do? It must be done. And you're the best resource for it. Will anyone know you did it? Would anyone care you did it, if they knew? Will you get the slightest bit of appreciation or thanks for your efforts? Can any reward be worth the hideously foul effort? Likely, no to all of those.
But you do it. You suffer. You receive nothing. Aside from a place to safely pee. Nobody asks. You don't tell. And other than one or two infrequent readers of your obscure self-therapeutic blog, nobody in your life is aware that you plunged that nasty toilet.
That, my friends, is love.
(Or you have to pee, badly.)
But then a rare moment of clarity: How many people in my life have plunged toilets on account of my issues without my knowing or my thanks or my appreciation?
(How many people in yours?)
Such thoughts linger. Long after the bowl clears.
Saturday, November 01, 2014
The service went off without a hitch. Morgan brought the rings straight to me then behaved very professionally. The three of them performed a sand ceremony to unite them as a family. Then the couple performed a rose ceremony and followed up with the more traditional vows and promises and merriment. The wedding party exited. Pictures. More pictures. Finally drinks and food and good times had by all.
One of the highlights of 2014, for me. Thankful to have been a part of it. And looking forward to seeing more of the newest member of the family!
Monday, September 29, 2014
Four years after starting my first Sprint triathlon, the previously unimaginable has become a reality: Your Humble Narrator is registered for the 2015 Ironman Chattanooga. Full distance event. One year away.
As previously noted, 2014 was a wash for triathlons. But 2015 will see new goals and new training methods. The current plans include:
- Returning to the 50K training that went TOO well last year.
- Continuing to stretch very aggressively, including daily exercises and yoga multiple times per week.
- Continuing to rehab sore muscles with sauna and cold bath therapy.
- And focusing on improved running form, most likely adopting the pose method.
Friday, September 26, 2014
Is there something you wish you had done differently this past year?
Tough to narrow down the selection! But one of my frequent challenges is waking up early At the house, things do not get done as easily when the family is awake. So my productive time is when they're asleep. But that often isn't until 10P. And on the weekends, even later. If my schedule shifted to the morning, things like running and Crossfit would work better. But hitting that snooze alarm is sooo easy. As turning off the alarm all together. Changing my sleeping to maximize my productivity is high on the priority list. But equally high in difficult. So it keeps getting pushed back. Year after year.
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Their first question was:
Describe a significant experience that has happened in the past year. How did it affect you? Are you grateful? Relieved? Resentful? Inspired?After giving it some thought, my answer was:
2014 started with new inspirations and a new, untested training program. Having been a poor runner all my life, the program focused on improving my weaknesses. Halfway into it, a long run was scheduled. 15K. Just over 9 miles. For the first time in (literally) decades, a sense of strength and certainty overcame me. My legs felt powerful. My chest wasn’t struggling for air. And there was no slowing me down. It turned into my fastest training 5K ever (though there were faster ones at official races) but it was also my fastest recorded 10K and my fastest 15K. Everything was glorious and magical and things were going to change for the better!
Until the next morning. My knees were shot. Especially the left. It felt as if somebody were sliding a knife under my kneecap with each step. Walking was difficult, at best. Training was impossible. And the disappointments were just beginning.
The new training program had to be canceled. My first triathlon of the season resulted in a significantly slower time than the previous year. My first half Ironman had to be canceled. And every race after that was either canceled, or slower. 2014 turned out to be my worst season since starting. A total disaster.
The end result was less time with my friends. More feelings of doubt and uncertainty. And a renewed sense of depression that hadn’t been felt in years. It was a huge personal and emotional step backwards.
The experience was less about physical pain and more about personal disappointment. But perhaps it taught me a lesson about pacing myself. And instilled a new sense of caution. In this world there are different types of mistakes. Good ones that we learn from. And bad ones that we repeat over and over without ever realizing the error of our ways. Hopefully this was a good one. Only time, and next year's racing season, will tell.One down. Nine more to go. Thank you, 10Q for the adventure. Perhaps a few of my friends will take up your gauntlet, too!
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
-Andrew Ryan, Bioshock
Driving her to school this morning, Meg asks: Do you believe in destiny, Daddy?
My answer ran something along the lines of: I believe in choices, BabyBear. I don't think we should ever accept to be victims of circumstances. We should work to be products of our decisions. I believe that between what happens to us and what happens next is our choice. The trouble is that good decisions come from experience while experience often comes from bad decisions. But we shouldn't let fear or anyone else decide our destiny for us. I think we make our own destiny. And where we are now, good or bad, is the result of all our previous choices.
Probably more than a twelve year old needs to hear before 8AM. Blaming the coffee. And reading too much Shakespeare. And being a long-winded nerd.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Plenty of training. Plenty of conditioning. Some of the new changes (like cold pool & sauna therapy) appear to have helped. My biking feels stronger. My swimming feels stronger. But after that faithful, record breaking run in February, my knee was never the same. And it is hard to complete a triathlon without running.
New plan? Get back to strength and conditioning. Get back on the 14 week training program. Focus on my running. Do some half marathons. Consider a full marathon. Then train with Jack & Luke for IMKY in 2015.
That's the plan. For now. And we all know how well my plans go...
Monday, September 22, 2014
Luke told me, "You've never given your knee a chance to REALLY heal." And looking back, he's right. So pushing through 12 weeks of Half Iron Training would not be a Good Thing (tm.)
So, one more Almost Race in the books for Your Humble Narrator. If they gave medals for Good Intentions, there would be boxes of them in the garage.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
Unfortunately, picking only ten is impossible. So my list is actually going to be:
- Fast Food Nation - Eric Schlosser - McDonald's hasn't received a single dime from me in almost 10yrs because of this book. Not only does it expose the seedy practices of the fast food industry but it elaborates on the war that corporations wage against consumers, wherein our health is sacrificed for corporate profits and their biggest advantage is our ignorance of their profit-driven practices. This changed everything about nutrition and eating for me.
- A People's History of the United States - Howard Zinn - Mind blowing. This one started me on my path to uncover other deceptions. So many of our beliefs are founded on myths and the truth is often strangers than fiction and usually difficult to swallow after being fooled so effectively for so many years.
- You Are Being Lied To - Russ Kick - A collection of world shattering essays that shed light on soooo many dark places. Dozens of articles and each a gift to curious minds. Where as Zinn discusses our past, Russ Kick deals with the modern world. And the Pandora's Box he opens has scarred me for life.
- Man's Search for Meaning - Viktor Frankl - This helped me understand the curse of materialism and the value of creating and maintaining happiness between each of us.
- Getting Things Done - David Allen - Brought structure to my chaos and helped me understand the value of structured, orderly approaches to dealing with most situations.
- The Dreams in the Witch House - H.P. Lovecraft - As far as fiction goes, this was the first story from the first author that completely absorbed my attention. Have read every story from Lovecraft and his style of writing continues to have an effect on my own.
- *Anything by the "modern poets" - TS Eliot, Ezra Pound, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams, ee cummings.* - These guys write the way my thoughts naturally unfurl. Reading them is akin to hearing my own voice. For 30 years their works have been behind most of my thoughts. And there's this wild idea haunting me of making a short, black & white movie based on Elliot's The Wasteland.
- *Anything by James Howard Kunstler* - Kunstler is an author / speaker that never ceases to amaze me with his keen insight, equal-opportunity-acidity and ability to cut through the non-stop illusions being played for us by various corporate / political entities.If only this guy would run for POTUS...
- *Anything by Leo Babauta* - As close to traditional spiritually as it gets for me, Leo writes articles on dealing with modern issues in this modern dystopia we're navigating. Like Kunstler, Babauta is weekly reading for me and his writing helps reshape Your Humble Narrator on a regular basis.
- *Anything by William Gibson* - Back on the topic of actual fiction, Gibson is one of the few (if only) authors that are required in my opinion. His writing style lines up nicely with the Modern Poets and his subject matter (usually dealing with some form of technology) is near and dear to me. Not sure if Gibson ever tours, but meeting him and getting a personal autograph is on my To Do List.
Tuesday, September 09, 2014
Back at the house. Instead of driving most of the day. Started by dropping the kids off. Meg at the old familiar Middle School. Liam at the High School. Then, despite being off, waded through recently accumulated work-email. (Feel guilty, otherwise.)
After a bit of that, it was off to Long Beach, Molly in tow. For the dog: a visit with her friends at Dad's house. For me: lunch with Mom, G'Ma, and Aunt Susan. Chinese buffet: Chopsticks. Good to catch up with the ladies who raised me. Mom always upbeat. G'Ma stick physically active. Aunt Susan, the original red head, rapidly recovering from ankle surgery, marrying off her daughter (Dana,) and starting her son (Dakota) in college. All of us busy and happy and glad to have each other's company. Back at the house, Dad gets a call about a new position at work: back to engineering! So big changes and much happiness for him, too! The biggest draw of Mississippi: my family.
Sunday, August 31, 2014
For the morbidly curious that derive some value from my observations, here's a peek into some additional thoughts:
- Dirty smugglers that we are, our folding chair bags also concealed a hidden Coke, for Liam. When we were getting into the park, past security, one of the guards was checking Liam's chair. The boy's eyes go wide but then Your Humble Narrator starts talking to the guard. Distracted him as he puts his hand less than an inch from the soda. Liam stopped breathing. Then the guard hands him the chair and we move through the line. Villains that we are.
- Event was sponsored by Rockstar. They had free samples. Liam tried his first one, and disliked it. Sampled the "peach," myself. Didn't like it. Not even for free.
- Buckcherry wasn't overly impressive. He talked as much as he sang. And most of his language was terribly profane. If that's your sort of thing, more power to you. Not mine, though. We sat in the shade and Liam cooled off. Took him a while to get used to the heat. Poor kid needs to get outside more often.
- Dinner was a Large Pizza for $15. Ugh! Liam ate like two pieces. Guess who ate the rest?
- Skillet was amazing. Opened with solos from the violin and cello. Proceeded to kick muuuuuch buttocks. Great musicians. Appreciative of the crowd. Interactive and gracious. The string players were my favorite aspect. Not sure of their genders, though. And not 100% sure if they were playing live, or not. But it lessens the magic if you know how the magician does his tricks.
- Seether surprised me with how phenomenonal they were. Played all the songs that I wanted to here. Especially Broken. They did that one acoustic and the crowd sang most of it. Oddest thing, between songs they'd do weird music transitions. Usually with distortion and pedal effects. And they didn't talk much. Just jammed. Great, rocktastic jams. Another great band.
- Closed out with Godsmack. The headliner. Played some new stuff. Played a lot of old stuff. awwwwwesome drum battle. THEN old Sully, the lead singer and musical phenom, started talking. And wouldn't shut up. With his ultra thick Boston accent. Was fixated in throwing beers into the crowd. Spend a few minutes cursing and yapping, then throw another beer. And he had more than a dozen to throw. We got tired of hearing his accent, so we packed up and left. Heard almost everything we wanted to hear, anyway.
- All the bands raved about the heat. Even though it was a relatively mild night by South Mississippi measures.
- Aside from Buckcherry, we didn't sit down. Didn't need the chairs. But needed more water and could have hidden it in the chair cases. If we had only thought of it.
- Afterwards, a breakneck dash through Rooney's. One more Coke for Liam and the coldest, most delicious Johnny Appleseed for me.
Saturday, August 30, 2014
Recovered at the pool all too briefly. Wanted to sauna, but it wasn't warm. Wanted to get in the cold (therapy) dip, but it wasn't cold. Such is my karma.
Karma's a word. Like "love". A way of saying 'what I am here to do.' I do not resent my karma - I'm grateful for it. Grateful for my wonderful wife, for my beautiful daughter. They are gifts. And so I do what I must do to honor them.
Life in the Southern Fried Matrix. Never a dull moment. And feeling healthier every day.
Friday, August 29, 2014
My kids likely won't remember the lack of power. Or frequently moving from house to house for six months. They won't remember the hunter / gather quests for food that their parents replayed each day. They won't remember the recovery efforts. The loss. The slow healing process. And with some small measure of luck, they will not get PTSD sweats or nausea that strike whenever the mistakes and sacrifices from the sleepy past make the unexpected leap to the all-too-real present.
My own private celebration took place at Rooney's. Accompanied by mi amigo mos loco: Roger. And several giant pints of icy Johnny Appleseed. We drank to Katrina, to paradise, to death, and to the lie of love. (Okay, that was borrowed from Bukowski, but it wasn't too far from the truth.) Two aging warriors remembering long lost battles while dreading the challenges ahead of us. Nothing we ever do will make any headlines. But at least we're never bored.
Across a long enough timeline, pain and rumors fade to smoke. Their effects are etched in water. The rest is just rust and stardust.
Thursday, August 28, 2014
Have a great workout baby! I love you so much!!! (heart) Your Wife :)He probably had a great workout. He probably loves her. But he leaves the note behind. On the floor.
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Happy is a state of mind. You can create happy in dire straits. I know this to e a fact. You can create happy when every single step is agony. Generally that takes more effort, and meds though.
Which helped. Enormously And the process of making my own happy resumes.
Monday, August 25, 2014
Sunday, August 24, 2014
After that, off to the pool for a mile of laps. Heat wasn't too bad. But nearly forty down and backs makes the mind wander. Gets boring long before you hit the mid point. Then it is a matter of pushing through. Good point is, my swim is fine and the next eight or nine weeks will only make it better.
(Any extracurricular he wants to do will be met with massive levels of support and encouragement. As a Freshman we have to start getting him ready for college applications, and things like volunteerism and highly organized groups like the orchestra will look good when he applies. And of course the grades! He's in ALL HONORS classes, already. Very proud of him and he's got our full support on all his endeavors.)
My night ended with not-enough-drinks at Mugshots. Buddy Rog showed and we had some laughs and some serious conversations about life and moving through it. Ended well. Always does. But my brain got knocked off kilter and things got very sideways and very uncertain pretty quickly. Going to be haunted for a while, now.
We all have wounds. Some heal. Some leave scars. Some stay open. But we conceal them behind as many layers as possible. And they leave us privately in pain for years. Sometimes we can't fix them. Sometimes we don't want to fix them. Sometimes we don't know how.
Reminds me of a quote:
You are not allowed
in my Hell
You must stay in
your own Hell
Wednesday, August 06, 2014
Tuesday, August 05, 2014
What next? Giving serious thought to a late-season 70.3. Potentially the Beach 2 Battleship event. Wrightsville Beach, NC. Many good reports about it. Especially the swim. Supposed to be flat. Supposed to be fun. Just the sort of thing Jon likes to hear.
Started a 12 week running program in anticipation of going. Plan would be to get a month or so of training on the knee to see how it responds. If it does't complain, sign up for B2B. Spend a couple of days in Atlanta. Visit friends. Taper. Then do the event. Reverse the journey. And go from there.
Have to see how it goes. But any progress is good progress.
Monday, August 04, 2014
Fifteen years ago I became a father. Not sure who has learned or grown more. But it never stops. And I hope it never does. I'm blessed.
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Hopefully all downhill from here.
At least until the Tylenol wears off.
Monday, July 28, 2014
Been doing yoga. Mon & Weds. Followed by new,sweaty adventures in the sauna and the cold dip. Experimenting with more Crossfit. The Jon-shaped sweaty outline provide evidence of the endeavors. Some weekend biking. Some weekend swimming.
Needed time off to clean my head. Probably not clear enough, yet. But time to get back out of this personal funk. Write more. Have more fun with the kids.Stretch more. Train more. See if the knee will cooperate. And shoot for a late-season 70.6. Looking like Beach 2 Battleship. May end up flying solo.
No guarantees. But only one way to find out.
More to come.
Thursday, June 05, 2014
Yoga feels better this week, too. Stronger. More confident. Breath coming more naturally. Remembering the old tips and tricks to help deepen the poses. Forgot how important yoga used to be to me. How it puts you more directly in touch with your own body. Have to make it a routine again. Integral part of overall training. Another piece of the puzzle.
Here's the thing about yoga: There's a constant battle between your body and your brain. Your body is perfectly capable of doing even the most advance moves. But since such things are not exactly EASY, your body sends false signals to trick your brain. And your brain WANTS to agree. If you can focus on your breathing, relax into the pose, and resist the false signals, you'll make progress. In my case the progress with my hamstrings is slow. But it is still progress.
Also added ANOTHER tool to my arsenal: sauna. High doses and repeated exposure is supposed to help muscular development and overall performance during high temperatures. The thinking is: get ready for the furnace of South MS summer by pushing my body through multiple 30min sessions in the sauna each week, post-workout. Going to try in over the next four weeks and see if it helps at Sunfish.
If nothing else, my hamstrings will be more flexible and eight pounds of sweat will be left behind.
Tuesday, June 03, 2014
Either strained something while working out last night (not likely) or it is a diverticulitis attack (ugh!) For the uninitiated, that is an infection due to a piece of SOMETHING getting lodged and infected somewhere in the colon. Had a major attack in 2003. Not looking for a repeat.
Couldn't stand the feeling while walking around the house and decided it was wisest to work from home rather than deal with it at the office. And nobody wants to hear me complaining about sharp abdominal pains.
By lunch time, a megadose of Ibuprofen had taken away most of the pain. With some luck it will be gone in the morning. Already caused me to miss a workout (biking) today. Supposed to run, tomorrow evening. Can't fall further behind schedule!
Inversely, it could get worse. If it does, there's a possibility of an MRI and/or a colonoscopy in my near future. Pleasepleasepleasepleaseplease let me be healthy again....