Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Black Friday Bushwhack!

Black Friday is a great tradition of fighting the masses and hordes of undead freaks looking for brains...

I mean shoppers looking for a bargain!


Stop throwing stuff at me!

Black Friday is not for me!

This year we wore black on a RUN for black Friday and decided to hit some trails.

We've done Flag Rock quite a few times now, but I've always wondered how the 'Steed Creek' trail connects to the Steed Creek trailhead - because the trail goes UP from Flag Rock, and Steed Creek is South - we normally pass it on our way towards Patsy's mine on the way to Flag Rock.

I suggested maybe we try that trail - and I should realize by now that when I make a suggestion for a trail I've never experienced... 'bad things' tend to happen.

It's always harder, steeper, rockier, whatever than expected or desired.

This time, we started of from the Farmington Pond road (the pond and parking lot is closed at this time of year, along with the canyon we've mentioned before) and followed the BST up until the Flag Rock trail splits off and headed up the millions of switchbacks to get to flag rock.

My legs were definitely feeling it from the 5k, but they weren't TOO bad, but still I was SLOW compared to the other guys! And I can't use the 5k as an excuse either as both my brother and the other Matt had run the same 5k! (I did beat my brother, but MVH was 2 minutes faster than me!) And Craig runs a ton all the time, so... yeah.

I definitely need to run up more mountains. I'm strong, but those muscles are still very weak and not that fast! I've got some work to do!

Then again, these guys run 50 and 100 mile mountain races... I don't and currently don't have any plans to - so I really don't need to be competitive! I am okay being last, but I don't like making people wait, if that makes sense.

I did end up being the last one to Flag Rock, (but not by that much) where we paused and took some video and pics and rested a bit.

Then we headed UP the trail - definitely not as marked or cut as the Flag rock trail, but it started out fairly decently until suddenly - we lost it! The trail was gone!

Of course we continued up and had to fight through all sorts of leafless scrub oak.

Ouch! Ooch! Eech!

Get me outta this!

My legs and arms were scratched to pieces!

Here's a video of the entire Bushwhackin Adventure from Flag Rock! Shot on Craig's amazing Sony HDR-AS15 Action Video Camera (Black) (Yep that's an affiliate link and if you bought something via that link I'd get like a DOLLAR!). I wouldn't mind one of thems AT ALL!

That thing takes beautiful video.

That run put me in PAIN. Not my legs, although between the 5k and the Mountain they are still pretty sore, but my lower back made me move like an old man who's used to a walker the whole weekend!

Final tally, over 7 miles in 2 and a half hours, pretty slow, but a LOT of vert and bushwhackin!

Needless to say I didn't do too much on Saturday and Sunday.

Oh wait - except I got a picture of THIS on Saturday:

Yeah.. you are right that's really not that impressive... Especially since I'm not even vertical!

I blame my old man back. Yeah, that's it!

Yoga yesterday helped me start to feel a bit less stiff in my back.

Today it's still bugging a little, but it didn't affect me in BJJ at all.
Also, for my own sake in remembering, we went over:
Sit up sweep drill, Leg switching drill (and the sweep that goes with it)
Trapping the arm of somebody in your guard and submitting them, (similar to the violin-type armbar), leg version if your arm can't get the elbow, knee sweep... and my mind completely went blank on the rest of them! I'll have to get the list from Micah.  We took so long drilling though that we didn't have time to roll and grapple at all - which is where I'm learning the most right now. Oh well - still good to get back into it some!

I look forward to ramping up to SOMETHING somehow!

Now to figure out WHAT that something is!

Turkey Legs - 2012!

It has been a week and a half since I posted about the work 5k...
Amazing how time flies. And how when you HAVE time, sometimes you don't want to do the silly things like blogging.

I didn't end up going to Crossfit on Friday the 16th because I took my boys to a movie!
I had a very nice time in yoga and climbing earlier in the morning. Felt amazing!

Saturday the 17th we met up with the usual crew (Yay awesome family!) for a morning run and brunch! We ran up the Davis Creek trail past El Capitan (Found out the name of the awesome big rock in the pictures) through Pretty Valley and down the flats back to the car. 2.7 miles in 50 minutes! Which really isn't bad for the amount of vertical gain on that trail.

My elder brother and his awesome daughter, and bro-in-law below

Mid-November and I wasn't cold!
After the run we got really productive and raked a bunch of leaves and did yardwork. Quite a good amount of upper body work to go with the fatigue I piled on the legs!

Monday Yoga was cut short because of weigh-ins for the annual holiday 'Maintain Don't Gain' contest. I weighed in at 168.6, which is higher than I've been all year! Sweet! Still after yoga I did some dead-lifts in a trap-bar - wow! I need to do more of those. There was 165 lbs on the bar, I think I can do a little more than my body weight, but not much! I also did some L-sit pullups and a few other random things.

Tuesday NOTHING. Had an all-day off-site meeting in a hotel room. Good team development, but not so great physically. Missed some ankle-lock escapes in BJJ!

Wednesday I actually got one entire set of 10 pullups in... I also went to multiple stores multiple times in preparation for Turkey day. I was even at Walmart with the power out. That's always fun. Luckily the lights came on and I was able to purchase what we needed and get out of there.

Thursday was the annual Turkey Leg Race that I have competed in 3 times now!
In 2010 I was 17th place with a time of 22:16 (171 runners)
In 2011 I was 24th place with a time of 22:06 (259 runners)

This is now a very FAST race for its size... 339 people ran it this year, with the fastest breaking his own record from last year in a ridiculous 15:49!!
In 2012 I was 20th place with a time of 21:33. My runkeeper showed 3.15 miles in 21:26

So while I was not able to finish in under 20 minutes like I hoped, I DID get 20th place out of the over 300 people there - and I'm pretty excited about that!

My kids ran the 1k as well - and I was so proud of my 2nd son's 6 minute finish! He did great!

Here are some pictures of the fun!

Finish Strong! (one of my brothers is the barefoot one there)

My amazing wife!

Go little guy!

I need to do a comparison of these that we have...

My Flying Crow... Not Bad

Kakes Flying Crow... MUCH Better!
 This year Thanksgiving was a lot of fun! I look forward to improving yet again for next years Turkey Leg!

Next time I'll beat 20 minutes!!!!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

5K Goals!

Arnold! I have no plans to ever get that big! Picture is pretty much unrelated!

Today was the annual Corporate Turkey Trot at my place of employment. 'Turkey' prize (usually a $25 gift card) for the top 3 male and female finishers.

This year I didn't care (that much) about top 3.

My goal was to first, achieve a 5k PR (so beat 21:53ish), and second, if possible, get below that 20 minute 5k time!

I also thought if I could achieve that goal I'd probably be in the top 3. We have some really fast competitors now! Remember that mile run a couple months back?


So how'd I do?

I finished FOURTH Place in 21:02!! DOH! So close! Yeah getting 4th made me care a little bit more about the top three! First place was 18:27!! He's the guy that beat me in the mile.

Hooray for a new PR, but dang on not beating 20 minutes. I'm not sure I'll be able to do it next week at the Turkey Leg either... We shall see!

After the 5k I decided that because of a crazy busy week I needed to do BJJ too! So we went over some takedowns from standing. Some excamples were the Scissor Sweep (which was a review), Hip Throw (from T stance), Blocked Hip throw to back trip, shooting and sprawling, Shoot to S-sit take-down, and Shoot to throw... Yeah those explanations were horrible... but really I have them here more for my review and remembrance than anything else.

Unfortunately this is not one that we did - but it's great! Also, I love gifs.

After we reviews those for a while the other participant had to leave for a meeting, so Micah and I grappled and I lost horribly very quickly almost immediately every time! The good thing about losing like that is it really makes me realize what I'm doing wrong.

"Crap! He caught my arm AGAIN!"

Really good ways to realize where your shortcomings are.

Like I mentioned this week has been pretty busy! I started the week attending an online training from home. I sit at a computer A LOT, but not usually for 9-10 hours STRAIGHT watching trainings and participating in labs. GREAT learning happening, but it drained me big time.

However that first day, I was still able to push myself through a fairly tough workout. Kind of like Cindy, but instead of 5 pullups, 10 pushups, 20 air squats, I did 10 L-sit Chin/Pull-ups (switched it up each time), 20 pushups, and 25 squats. Yeah adding another 5 squats would have been easy - but I didn't want to! 2 rounds of regular L-sit Pullups, 2 rounds of L-sit Chinups, and 1 round of Parallel grip L-sit pullups. 5 rounds of 20 pushups, and 4 rounds of 25 squats. 100 was a good number of squats and pushups. And I was tired and a little lazy so I didn't want to do one more set of bodyweight squats.

Really they get boring after a few rounds.

Other than that not much has happened! Hopefully we can have a Saturday morning trail run starting this week and continuing through the winter - I haven't heard back from any of the regular folks yet though, so we'll see how it works out.

Yoga and Rock Climbing tomorrow! I might go to Crossfit, but they moved it to earlier in the day, and I need to leave early to take my boys to Wreck it Ralph!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Box Jumps and Snatches

A blog entry with no pictures is lame. I need to start adding random internet pictures or stuff from Tumblr or Pinterest if I have no pictures I've taken!!

Random Internet Picture! Unfortunately this is NOT me. Awesome Pose! I want to do this!

Yesterday's post had no pictures. Blah!

Woke up to Rain and Snow early this morning as I headed out to make it to Friday morning Yoga.
I haven't done yoga all week! It took me longer to get into yoga because I was feeling sluggish from the lack of yoga this week, along with the pain in my head and jaw from BJJ yesterday. Yoga really provides a balance and a base to me both physically and mentally. I really like doing it continuously. It was just me, the teacher, and Matt in yoga this morning. Matt is the Kung Fu guy who clocked me in the head yesterday too! I think that's kind of funny. He's a way nice guy, so I'm glad I don't get mad at people about stuff like that.

I had a jolly good time climbing this morning after yoga. One of our maintenance guys is taking some high level climbing classes and has had to create some routes - so he graded and created some new routes and marked them on the wall. The hardest one is a 5.9... which isn't that hard really... I'm still not familiar with the grades - but it was fun to go up the different routes multiple times. my forearms are pumped, which I guess is kind of bad since I was supposed to be practicing my 'sagging' while climbing (arms stretched long - butt sagging down - uses a lot less energy in your arms and allows for a greater leg range of motion). Definitely fatigued my forearms!

Those sore arms sure made Crossfit a piece of cake!

See below for my actual workout - adding the challenge round

Repeat this first sequence 3 times:
-1 lap around gym
-10 Wall Balls (15 lb medicine ball)
-10 KB Deadlifts (40 lb kb)
-1 set stairs (about 40 stairs up and down)
1 set of dragon crawls (kind of like spiderman crawls but a bit harder) across the gym and back
Repeat this second sequence twice:
-14 one arm KB Swings (7 each arm)
-Waiter Walk (KB Straight above your head across the gym and back - each arm)
Finish with
10 Tuck Jumps
5 Burpees

That was a tiring warmup.

(I elected to do the harder version and add a set of 50 at the top and bottom of the ladder, so mine looked like this)
50 KB Snatches, 10 Box Jumps (30-36" box)
40 KB Snatches, 20 Box Jumps
30 KB Snatches, 30 Box Jumps
20 KB Snatches, 40 Box Jumps
10 KB Snatches, 50 Box Jumps

I finished in 18:17ish - 3rd done. I'm fine with that!

THEN for an extra extra challenge (since adding a 50 set wasn't challenge enough - but that one was voluntary) we did walking lunges around the gym. It took me 72 lunges to get around the gym.

Like I often do lately, for fun I decided to do a couple muscle-ups after all that. I did 2 and decided that was plenty. Yay I can STILL do them even when REALLY fatigued!

After Crossfit the sweat always gets into my eyes and makes 'em look horrible, so I took a self-shot-locker room pic to show that AND because I knew I had to have at least one personal picture for this blog entry. I've NEVER done one of those locker-room self-pics before, ha!
Nice to see things continuing to improve - still so close on the abs... I'll get there!

Yeah... my eyes look awesome!
When I logged the workouts of today into Fitocracy I got over 2600 points! A ton of them came from Box Jumps. 1 set of 50 box jumps is worth more than an HOUR of Yoga. I think that is a bit weird... but it is nice to get lots of points.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Pain Meds

Monday morning I woke up very early (and multiple times throughout the night) in pain.

Called the Dentist just after 7:00, knowing they'd be open.


"Would you like to come in at 8:00?"


Discovered I was in need of a root canal. "No big deal!" I says to myself. I've had a few Root Canals before and they were exactly that. Not a big deal.

I think those roots had died a much quicker and painless death than this root...

I haven't cried from PAIN as an adult that I can remember. I walked out to my car and called my beautiful wife, "I'm *SOB* hurt-*SOB*-ing real bad!"

What a wimp.

I laugh at myself about it now. Seriously. That was some serious PAIN though. The pain during and right after the Root Canal was about 5 times worse than it had been before the procedure. However THAT pain had been enough to keep me home all day Sunday!

And the strangest thing about it was if I stopped and thought about where the pain was that was keeping me from doing stuff - It was only in the upper right side of my head. Everywhere else felt fantastic, except that the PAIN HERE feeling took over. I guess I was a bit sore from the crazy Crossfit and running of Friday and Saturday, but it wasn't too bad.

I had the Dentist call in a prescription for some stronger relief after I got home from the Dentist. Ended up with the generic for Lortab, Hydrocodone/Acetaminophen. As long as I sat or lie down mostly holding still - it did a good job of removing the pain. But as soon as I got up to move around I'd practically pitch right over with no balance!

Needless to say I didn't do much on Monday! It's amazing how important Dental Health can be to overall health.

I wish I'd taken better care of my teeth as a kid.

Thankfully Tuesday the pain was already better than it had been on FRIDAY, so just some ibuprofen was sufficient. Not quite ready for BJJ so that didn't happen Tuesday.

Tuesday night I went on a night run with my brother. I told him "I'm still a little weird from the Lortab yesterday so I want to 'take it easy'" Then I went and ran 3.5 miles keeping under an 8 minute pace. Hee hee. We kept on the road from his house out and back - decent little run - I greatly prefer trails!

Wednesday had a group lunch with our VP so I missed Yoga as well!

Today I went and got kicked (well... kneed really) in the head during BJJ. So now my head hurts again! We had 2 new people today so we worked on the same thing in my very first lesson - Sit up sweeps, Sit up sweep to kimura, and sit up sweep to guillotine choke! It has been a while since I did the guillotine move - and I did NOT do it well. One of the new people has a decent amount of experience in Kung Fu - he studies Hsing-i/Xingyi at Sil Lum Kung Fu club that I actually looked at joining with my wife a few years back. If only we had more money! So with his Martial Arts defensive base he was a really strong defender and even did a good job lasting with Micah! So his defense was very good - but he didn't really do better against ME than he did against Micah, other than attaching his knee very solidly to my jaw there for a bit! :)

Earlier today I was able to learn a bit about 'sagging' in climbing - and I'm looking forward to practicing the new routes on the climbing wall tomorrow morning after yoga!!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

On the Trails (and Crossfit) Again!

This toothache is killing me!!

Of course it has to be on a weekend when all dentists are closed... And on my dentist's answering machine it says to call in case of "Dental Emergency" but I am not sure if this qualifies.

Kakes says it does because I woke up a bunch last night in horrible pain. I've been managing with Ibuprofen and only eating on my left side. The tooth that is the issue is actually a crown - so it is INSIDE where the root and stump of my original tooth that is hurting. Hopefully it isn't any sort of infection and will easily be taken care of.

Yesterday I finally made it back to Crossfit, which really seems to be a theme with  me lately. Go to crossfit, get really busy and keep missing it for weeks at a time, make it back a few weeks later and post the same "finally made it back!" type of post. Ha.

The WOD was a ladder type workout - we started with the warmup. I was using a 35 lb Kettlebell for the warmup and workout.

10 KB Squat Press
Side Run
10 KB Press
10 Pushups
Backwards Run
10 KB Swing
10 Goblet Squat
10 KB Snatches

10 KB Squat-Press
Run (1/10th a mile)
20 KB Push-press
30 KB Goblet Squat
40 KB Swing
50 KB Snatch
40 KB Swing
30 KB Goblet Squat
20 KB Push-press
10 KB Squat-Press
Finished first in 19:19, next person was 20:25. I had the 2nd lightest weight out there though - and that makes a HUGE difference in times!

For the final challenge we had a quarter mile 'race' around our parking lot - I beat a guy who normally easily beats me by 7 seconds. I finished it in 1:06.
In the Mile (for the same competition as the Planks) he beat me by about 25-30 seconds, but I kept ahead of him for almost the first half mile. So I guess I'm a tiny bit faster after a rough workout and at the start...

To be totally fair he did have a heavier weight than me throughout the earlier workout - and that would have added a lot of time for me! I do think that I should probably move up to a bigger weight soon.

This morning I woke up feeling quite sore - but the worst spot was in my traps - and all I did with that was 10 reps using the 60 lb barbell I had while I went to put it away! The KB stuff didn't help I'm sure - but wow! Soreness! I'm glad they got some work!

So what do you do if you are sore?  You go for a RUN!

We watched my brother in law's kids overnight - their oldest is 12, and she watched the kids for us while we went on a run to Flag Rock. Kakes hadn't been all the way there (Patsy's mine is just below - but it's more than half a mile longer on CRAZY steep switchbacks)

We went five miles and had a lot of fun up in the mountains. It's been over 2 weeks since I went out for a run (other than the 1.75ish combined total I did in Crossfit yesterday!) so it felt GREAT. We stopped and played a lot (you'll see in the pictures) and I didn't pause the app at all so really we ran faster than the 19 minute mile pace shown there. We took a bunch of pictures so here are a bunch!

Easily to the top! Not too long ago she couldn't!

I like standing on big rocks.

And doing Yoga poses on them.

First time at Flag Rock! So tough!

Lucky for me - Kakes likes doing Cool Yoga poses on rocks too!

She does some awesome poses too!

I don't think I can do this one (and if I could it wouldn't look good!)

That little rock just above Kakes' head is Flag Rock!
SO nice to get back out on the trails, even though I was sore and tired from yesterday's craziness - but even more from this stupid toothache! Hope I can get it taken care of Monday!

Less than two weeks until a work 5k, then the next week is Thanksgiving and we are again doing the annual Turkey Leg we've done for the past two years now! I am hoping to achieve my goal of a sub-20 minute 5k in one of them! I think I can do it if I can stay healthy!!

Friday, November 2, 2012

My First Gi

Yesterday Micah brought in a couple old Gi tops and a pair of pants for me to use in our BJJ training.

Seriously I'm super geeking-out about it, because I've never had a real gi before. Just one bought from a thrift store we dyed black and used for a ninja costume when I was a kid.
Sure they are old and tatterred and used - but they are REAL and they are USEFUL and being USED to train Brazilian Jujitsu. I've wanted to train some martial art for my whole life so this finally makes it more real to me.

And yes - I DID put it on and strut around the house for a while last night showing off for the wife and kids!

They were of course, extremely impressed. (ha)

Another First: "My First Breaking of Someone's Bones"

A few weeks ago in BJJ we were working on a scissor sweep when someone is in your guard. One of my first bosses at my job had joined the class, he had recently started at a BJJ gym as well and was looking for some more practice. He's bigger than me so he didn't have any problem throwing me pretty far with the scissor sweep (which isn't really the point, but it can be good I guess!) - anyway somehow his arm got put in a weird position as he swept me and my back landed on his thumb. BAM. We thought it was just dislocated, and he had a splint on it for a few days. It kept bugging him so he went and got it x-rayed and it looks like to fix it so he can actually use his thumb will take some fairly extensive surgery ($7k). Yikes! Also since it was on company property and whatnot - it IS a workers comp issue whether he wants to claim it or not. Hopefully that won't be the end of the BJJ classes here.
Luckily we have one of the HR Directors who has come, and he thinks it was a freak thing and not common, as BJJ is very careful and controlled and frankly less dangerous than any of the other things we have available like Crossfit, Climbing Wall and weights.

Yesterday in BJJ we practiced the following - using the Gi tops (kimono) and some old shirts and long sleeve jackets for the chokes.

The usual warmups – shrimps, s-walk, sprawls, etc
1 leg looping the arm drill (should find a better description, ha!)
1 flowing armbar drill (seen in this video at about 0:51 - we also did the spin around leg drill a while back - that was fun (1:22))
Gi and t-shirt choke with one hand grabbing behind other hand over first hand (palm down) AND other hand under first hand (palm up)(also from Mount) ((not guard, ha!)
“Hockey shirt” choke – gathering shirt material to simulate 1st choke
Sleeve chokes – their sleeve; your sleeve (Ezekiel choke), other rope/clothes/whatever
Jacket corners choke
Choke from the back - This is the one I remember least.

I add those here to mostly remember and have at LEAST a written reminder. If I can find a good way to video these I want to get the Mat Time with Micah videos going again... We'll see what we can do.

This morning I went to Yoga and planned to climb on the wall for a while afterwards - but the Wellness coordinator had accidentally taken the wall keys home with her and she wasn't there in time for me to be able to climb. Doh. Instead I did some Preacher Curls, some Machine Incline Bench Presses, and some wide-grip pullups.

We'll see if I regret that in an hour when I go to Crossfit! It's been about a month since I've been to Crossfit. Hopefully I don't die.

(I'm really not worried.)

I have a painful muscle tweak right inside my right scapula and a toothache up inside one of my crowns... I love how I ALWAYS have some little tooth issue about a week before my Dentist appointment - and on Fridays when they aren't in! Oh well - Hopefully the pain goes away - I've had issues with this crown before.
That might make Crossfit interesting. We'll find out!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Weird Fitness Funk Again

So we seem to have fallen into a weird funk. (Unfortunately not a GOOD kinda funk...)

Crewing and Pacing the Pony Express was awesome - but the next week (last week) just felt dead.

I don't know if it is just that after the PE50 we haven't had anything to look forward to or prepare for;
if it's just the changes in season, or something else entirely - but I something was missing. Even the normal excitement we have for Halloween (HAPPY HALLOWEEN yesterday!!!) is a lot lower than normal...

Even more strange - Every day last week I had a great yoga class or some really good experiences learning techniques and then trying to execute them in practical rolling against a much more skilled opponent. So in some ways it was GREAT, but then last weekend I did almost nothing and for some reason I felt really weak and lethargic and like I hadn't done anything the whole week.

It is more weird because I feel like BJJ has been fantastic lately and while I still have a LONG way to go to be ANYWHERE, there is actual improvement and retention finally.

Basically I think I need something to motivate me beyond a 5k. A bodybuilding contest? Something having to do with BJJ? That's not very likely because I'm not currently training with any organization - just some guys at work!

Speaking of BJJ, Tuesday Micah taught me a few good moves related to things we'd learned before, along with some reviewing of those earlier moves.

We worked on:
Leg trip takedown
Leg trip takedown from knees
Armbar counter to leg trip (From knees mostly)
Arm Wrap trip
Neck pull to take the back
Neck pull counter (grab the ankle and knee)
Jump to Scissor (standing or knee)

Jump to Butterfly (Standing or knee)

Yesterday I walked almost 3 miles with my kids Trick-or-Treating. I even carried kids piggy-back and otherwise quite a few times. I was TIRED after that! But I still made myself do some pushups. Gotta get back into it!

Today we are going to do some GI or clothing-related chokes and stuff that is more applicable for what people wear. (see this article about training with a gi vs. no-gi) I'm excited to see what happens - plus I think I'm going to get a used Gi of my very own. Awesome!