Wednesday, December 8, 2010
The treadmill or as I and many other like to call it the dreadmill is not exactly a place that inspires the same level of excitement as heading out on the road or trail for a long run. My YMCA also limits your time to 60 minutes so my only hope was that it would not be that busy and I could manage to just keep resetting it after each set. Plan called for 4 hours but I thought if I could manage 3 I would feel pretty good about that.
As it turned out once I had conceded that I would be on this contraption for 3 hours it was not really that bad. I did not push any sort of difficult pace like I might normally do but instead just set it at a steady 6MPH and went. At the end of each 60 minute set I went and filled my water bottle and used the restroom then quickly returned to the machine and finished another.
I would not recommend this as something to do regularly but in a pinch it was not to bad and including my warmup/cooldown along with a few walk breaks to hydrate I managed to finish just shy of 17 miles.
Typically after my long runs I take a day off before and after but this week because of many scheduling conflicts I ran the night before and also opted on a recovery run the next day. Surprised that neither one seemed to affect my long run and my recovery run seemed to loosen up my tight calves from the long run the day before. I will probably continue to at least do a short 3-5 mile recovery run the day after each long run from now on.
The thermostat has taken a quick plunge to the south. Last night I got home and debated on running outside or not. It was dark and the temp was 17 degrees with a steady wind. I picked up a pair of Saucony tights in the fall this year but I don’t really have anything for the torso to protect against these temps. In the past when I have run in the cold the sun was typically out so it never really got to be miserable. However, running in the dark cold is an entirely different experience. I am going to have to do a little research on proper gear for running in these temps. Chest, arms and hands were OK but the tissue around my stomach and back was frozen.
Have a good week.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Galeos Miso Caesar Dressing, a supposedly low-calorie and low-fat product hyped on NBC's reality show "The Biggest Loser" and endorsed by trainer Jillian Michaels, among others, is neither low-cal nor low-fat, lab tests commissioned by Consumer Ally found. Testing showed the actual calories per serving is almost 10 times what the label claims.
Read the full article here...
He also pointed out that like any other diet MODERATION is also a component.
Monday, November 8, 2010
Time is not standing still as I would have hoped for the purpose of preparing for this race. However, I am moving along on my plan with a few missed runs but getting my long ones in which are the most important of them. Total mileage for week 6 of 32.86 miles.
Pure Screamin’ Hell Race Report
The run started on the street with a mad dash to the woods. I got in behind a pretty slow group and since it was single track in the dark passing was more or less impossible. The first 2 miles were around 12 minutes each but when we got to the bottom of the hill there was a street crossing that allowed me the opportunity to pass about 10 people.
Plenty of room to run now but this is was also the base of the first major hill climb. I debated on running the entire hill but decided I would walk about 1/2 way up. Surprisingly I did not lose much ground to the bouncing lights I could see 100 feet in front of me.
Thinking the worst was behind me I settled down a lot and started to cruise. As it turned out the worst was yet to come. No more big climbs but constant up/down/up/down was exhausting. This little 6 to 12 foot moguls are a blast on a mountain bike...on foot, not so much. Really started taking a toll on my feet and knees about mile 5 and my legs were getting more jelly like with each pounding down and back up.
The other part that I struggled with was going downhill. As it turns out this is much more difficult to do that up. The trail was mostly covered with leaves which hid all of the roots, outgrowths and other things that laid in wait to send you head over heals. No way to open it up on the downhills for fear of twisting/breaking a limb. I managed to only fall once when my shoe caught a root and did not let go. Tore a hole in my shoe, brand new ones by the way, and sent me toppling down. This is the one time where the short downhills where a blessing as I stopped in the valley between them limiting my travel to only a few feet.
All in All a great race and I had a ton of fun. A little disappointed that my Garmin read 6.86 at the end instead of 6.66 but close enough.
This week includes the following runs.
Mon: 1.25 hours
Tues: .75 hours
Weds: 1.25 hours
Thurs: 1.25 Hours
Sat: Siltstone Half Marathon – I don’t plan to “Race” this event since it falls into my training plan. Really just want to go at a nice and easy training pace and get familiar with what will be part of the final leg of my 50K. 3500 Feet of elevation change in this one so going fast is not really an option anyway. Should finish around 2:30 considering the elevation changes and plan to walk up the steeper ones to avoid injury. Calling for rain on Saturday at some point, hopefully it will hold off at least until I am done.
Have a good week
Monday, October 4, 2010
My current plan is to train as if I were running a Marathon and include lots of hill repeats and trail runs. In addition some light weight large rep/set leg strength exercises at least 1 time per week. Mostly I plan to “wing” it, because honestly where is the fun in having a detailed plan with no deviation. If you know me at all you know that I am not a Type A person so I built a plan as a guide and I have to meet the goals each week but things may change or come up during my training that keep me from doing it exactly as written.
I am on Week 2 now which is as follows…
Mon: 5 Mile Fartlek
Tues: 3 Mile Easy
Wed: 5 Mile Trail
Thur: 3 Mile Easy
Sat: 9 Mile Trail
Total: 25 Miles
I will likely mix in some swimming, cycling and other fun activities in there including doubling up on my weekday runs. Based on previous years results I am thinking that my finish should be around 6.5 to 7.5 hours. A trail race such as this with so many hill climbs and descents along with stream crossings and the possibility of inclement weather will require training to be on my feet as much as covering the distance.
With that in mind I will try to spend more time standing and walking during the training including at home avoiding the couch when I can. Difficult to do at work because of the type of job I have but I think I can make up for it partially by just staying on my feet at home.
If you would like to see my Official Plan you can follow the link below. Please feel free to comment as well since I admittedly know nothing of what I am getting myself into.
I will welcome sponsers if you are so inclined...:)
Monday, September 13, 2010
Confessional time...perhaps this will snap me out of my funk.
I have been at goal for about a year now. After review in Jan I determined that I could easily lose another 15 pounds or so. Well after about 8 months of trying and dropping at most 2 lbs to 173 I just cannot seem to drop it. More or less threw in the towel and spent the last couple of weeks sulking and whining. Back up to 177 this morning and have been eating things like popcorn and even had a cupcake yesterday! This was the first time any such treat has passed my lips in over 2 years.
Stepping back and look at this logically I can see that this is the part where many people start packing on the pounds again. How easy would that be to do at this point. I find myself trying harder each time some opportunity for a treat to say no and even then it no longer feels like a natural response but rather a forced painful decision. Why can’t I have a piece of cake? WTF! I mean I eat right all the time and coupled with exercise I should not have any problem managing a piece of cake or some ice cream.
Of course the logical side of me know exactly why I cannot afford to indulge but the human side is growing restless. That slope is not that steep, I pulled myself out once, I can certainly do it again?
In addition to getting lazy on my WOE I also finished up my last race for 2010 which has me a little in the dumps as well since there is really nothing to train for. Since I only found the time to do 1 Triathlon so it just seemed somewhat bitter sweet to cross the finish. Ughh…
Overall I am pretty disappointed in my progress this year regarding fitness and weight loss.
So as much as I enjoyed that brief slide down towards the abyss, I decided it was time to grab a root and hold on before it gains momentum. For now I have conceded to continuing by training to maintain fitness at a relatively moderate level. I will race the Hangover Classic 10 Miler on New Years Day again which gives me something to look forward to as well. Amy and I will be discussing in January on whether or not I will be doing a Full Ironman next year or limit it to a Half Iron. While both would be a lot of fun and I am not opposed to waiting on IM I just feeling a little lost on what the heck I am doing all of this for right now. IM is such a huge commitment of time for not only me but the entire family and there no way I would do it without knowing they were all onboard.
My favorite saying of late has been “Nobody goes to the park for a picnic and sets out their spread right next to a pile of dog shit on purpose. Stop worrying about the details and enjoy the good stuff”. While unintentional, I think I found the pile of poo and I need to find a clearing again.
BTW…that cupcake was gooooood! ;)
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
A quick trip to Google and as it turns out I am not the only one that is looking to run barefoot but will not opt for running around with them fully exposed to all of the glass, metal, poo and many other dangers that I regularly encounter on a run. Below is a little bit of information on what I was looking at and what options seemed to be the best for newbie’s like myself that want to try it out without going full on.
The Vibram 5 Fingers.
These basically fit on your foot like a glove complete with individual toe inserts. Providing the same level of protection you would likely get from a pair of beach/river shoes these are the closest thing to being barefoot without actually going there. To say they are weird looking is an understatement. However, if you could get beyond the strange looks they did seem to be the best option for getting the full barefoot experience without actually doing it. My only concern with them was the cost and what if I did not like them. A more traditionally designed shoe would at least be able to be used as daily wearers if they did not work out.
Which leads me to my second option...
Nike proclaims these shoes will let your feet be free like feet want to be. Not sure if that is completely true but all of the reviews and feedback supported these as a great option for running. Close to the feel of running barefoot with a small amount of padding for shock absorption. Tried on a pair at the Foot Locker and took them for a spin around the Mall. Nice roomy toe box and fit was snug but comfortable. I particularly liked the way you slide them on like a pair of slippers as opposed to having the tongue and shoe as separate pieces.
Finally I opted to visit my local running store to talk to some people that are more familiar with subject at hand. Not knocking the guy at Foot Locker but his knowledge on the subject of running seemed minimal at best. After speaking with one of the guys there and since they sell both the Nike Free’s and Vibram 5 Fingers he suggested I also look at a pair of Saucony’s. Not familiar with these at all but he explained that they might be a better option for a new runner as they have better designed cushioning in the sole that is also just as light and will provide the same feel as the Nike Free. Tried these on as well and really liked the design of the mesh inner shell surrounded by some other opaque material. Provided a nice snug fit and felt great and very similar to the Nike Free’s.
After some deliberation and a few quick trips to Google on my iPhone to check the reviews I opted for the Saucony’s.
Later the next week…
OK, I went out last night for a run in the park in my new kicks. While I had already tried them out on a 3 mile run on Saturday it was right after a long bike ride with lots of hills work that made it difficult for me to make a judgment. Monday comes and a much better run than the first in them because I was well rested and truly had the opportunity to see how they felt.
They are fast and light. Shifting my weight forward as described by the guy at the running store helped keep my feet landing right on the flats and balls of my feet. I spent the first mile just trying to run at different speeds, adjusting my landing and also my legs on the follow through.
If I ran slower 9.5-10 Pace my foot would slip slightly forward in the shoe with each landing. Almost like I was hitting the brakes with each impact. Because I was running on a crushed rock path I could also hear and feel the ground slipping slightly below the sole.
Speeding up to 8-8.5 pace the slipping stopped but then I was moving very quickly. However, the speed felt very natural and comfortable other than cardiovascularly. My calves had also been recruited to support this new impact and I was quickly feeling the burn there and also my glute’s. I think the glute stress came from my feet making a much higher swing than what is typical in my other shoes. Almost touching my butt with each stride rather than swinging more pendulum like using a typical stride.
So mile 1 behind me I decided to stop and stretch and then do another 3 miles at the pace that I found most comfortable. Mile 1 paced at 8:05, mile two 8:12 and finally mile 3 at 8:20. By the time I hit that third mile I was ready to quit but suffered through it determined to see how it played out. I am not ready to run those paces yet on a regular bases and started to wonder if these shoes would be right for me. The natural feel of the shoe and speed that they seem to want to make me run at comfortably left me exhausted. I am still not going to put to much into this run as it was my first and I have a feeling there is still going to be a learning curve on how to run properly in something that is offers such a minimal amount of support.
For the time being these will be used only on shorter distances of 3-5 miles until I can either get used to them or retire them to cross trainers. The shoes overall are incredibly comfortable and I do feel great in them just unsure if I want to go that fast on my ‘easy’ runs. Part of the joy of running is taking it all in but for slow people like me 8 minute miles are saved for race days not relaxing jogs through the park. If my heart feels like it just might protest and jump from my chest and leave me doubled over evacuating the contents of my stomach then I am not sure how much value these have for me.
Jury is still out on the Saucony Kinvara’s.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Professor Manuel Garzon, a faculty member at Granada University, reported to the Daily Mail the results of a study involving 25 university students over the course of several months. The students were asked to do a rigorous workout on a treadmill in 104 F degree temperatures then asked to drink 16 ounces of lager and as much water as they desired. The other group received only water (as much as they desired). Full Article Here...
The CDC uses the scientific Body Mass Index formula to measure obesity (they never actually use the word "obese" in their reports). A combination of your height and weight, a BMI score of 25 or higher indicates that you are overweight, while a BMI score of 30 or more indicates obesity. For more information on Body Mass Index, as well as a calculator you can use to easily find your own BMI score, check out How Body Mass Index Works.
Childhood Obesity (a BMI score of 30 or more) is a serious health risk. It can lead to all sorts of problems, from heart disease and bone trouble to social and psychological trauma. And the problem is growing. Today, twice as many children ages six to 11, and three times as many adolescents ages 12 to19, are obese than they were just 20 years ago.
So what's the deal? Why is this happening? Is it really a bad thing, and what can we do about it? In this article, we'll take a closer look at childhood obesity. We’ll find out who’s at risk of being obese, what the consequences are and what's being done to combat this national health epidemic.
Read full article here...
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Active.com posted this in an email to me this morning, likely because someone saw me swimming and figured I needed some serious help. So my next swim will use this planned workout rather than my typical do whatever I feel like workout. Will also start using Swimplan.com to try and find more workouts. It would be nice if I could get down to 1:40 X 100M sustainable over 1600M. Currently I could probably do the 1:40 but that would also be the end of any effective workout.
300, breathe on your weaker side on even lengths
4 x 75, first 50 of each is kicking on your side, last 25 is swim
4 x 100, count strokes on first 25. Descend stroke count with each 100. Rest=15 seconds
3 x 200 on cruise interval*
4 x 75, middle 25 backstroke, rest=10 seconds
4 x 50, descend stroke count, rest=20 seconds
3 x 100 on cruise, rest=05 seconds
4 x 125, breathe every 3 strokes. Rest=10 seconds
4 x 50 Free Golf**
200 Distance Per Stroke*** and breathe on your weaker side on odd lengths
*Cruise: An interval you can make consecutive 100-yard or -meter swims on with about 5-10 seconds rest.
**Free Golf: Count your strokes and get your time on each 50. Add these numbers together to get your "score". Attempt to lower your score each round by either lowering stroke count, going faster, or doing both.
***Distance Per Stroke: Extend and glide as much as you can with each stroke.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Both diets improved cholesterol in a two-year study that included intensive group counseling. But those on the low-carbohydrate diet got a bigger boost in their so-called good cholesterol, nearly twice as much as those on low-fat.
In previous studies, low-carb diets have done better at weight loss at six months, but longer-term results have been mixed. And there's been a suggestion of better cholesterol from low-carb eating.
The latest test is one of the longest to compare the approaches. At the end of two years, average weight loss was the same for both — about 15 pounds or 7 percent.
The key difference was in HDL, or good cholesterol: a 23 percent increase from low-carb dieting compared to a 12 percent improvement from low-fat, said Gary Foster, director of Temple University's Center for Obesity Research and Education, who led the federally funded study.
He said the low-carb boost is the kind one might get from medicines that improve HDL.
"For a diet, that's pretty impressive," Foster said.
The findings, published in Tuesday's Annals of Internal Medicine, are based on a study of 307 adults, two-thirds of them women. Participants were obese but didn't have cholesterol problems or diabetes.
Half followed a low-carb diet modeled after the Atkins' plan and half went on a low-calorie, low-fat diet. All attended group sessions to help them change bad eating habits, get more active and stick to their diets.
The volunteers had periodic checks of their weight, blood, bone density and body composition. After two years, there was no major differences between diet groups, except in good cholesterol. Why the low-carb diet had a bigger effect on good cholesterol isn't known, the researchers said.
As low-carb plans became popular, experts feared the diet would drive up the risk of heart disease because it allows more fat. The latest results suggest those concerns are unfounded, Foster said. In the low-carb group, there was an early rise in "bad" cholesterol, the kind that builds up in arteries. But after two years, both groups ended up with similar improvements to bad cholesterol.
The study's strengths include its size, length and its multiple locations — Denver, Philadelphia and St. Louis, said Dr. William Yancy, of the Durham VA Medical Center in North Carolina.
"These are results we should have a lot of confidence in," said Yancy, who has done similar diet research but was not involved in the study.
Foster, the study leader, said dieters should be less concerned about which diet to use, and focus on finding the support or technique — like writing down what they eat — that keeps them on track.
"It doesn't make a difference for weight loss how you get there," he said.
With the current obesity epidemic, more than one way is needed to attack the problem, Yancy said.
"Both of these are options. These diets work," he said.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
75F / 24C Overcast
Triathlon - Olympic
Total Time = 2h 53m 6s
Overall Rank = 295/447
Age Group = 40-44
Age Group Rank = 35
Had trouble sleeping the night before, finally dozed off at about 2AM. Back up at 5:15 AM. Coffee pot started, quick shower and 1oz Sunflower Butter on a Corn Thin. We stayed right on the Canal so it was pretty easy to get to the transition area.
Grabbed bag and hopped on bike for about a 1/2 mile ride. My air pump malfunctioned so I made sure to arrive early to avoid the rush to air up tires from one of the Vendors. Also paid off because I was able to nab a end spot on the rack that was assigned to me.
Setup transition then back the hotel to meet up with the family. Final restroom break and another bottle of water and I was off to the swim start which is roughly another 1/2 mile in the opposite direction of transition.
Time 34:06 | 1640 yards | 02m 05s / 100yards
Course: In a canal running through downtown Indy. Roughly 40 feet wide other than some occasional wider and narrower parts.
Start type: Dive Plus: Time Trial
Water temp: 75F / 24C Current: Low
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: NA
Water was much colder than I expected, glad I jumped in for a quick warm-up. I think this helped alleviate the shock had I just gone right on in. Family there to encourage me and root me on was awesome and I got really excited when I saw them at the start.
Forgot to put my goggles on when I dove in. Thank goodness they did not fall into the murky abyss. Quick roll over to my back, goggles on and off I go. Got carried away with pace for about 100M or so trying to find space to swim.
Once I found room I slowed up a bit and tried hard to work on that 2:10 pace I had been working on. Even at this slower pace I was very surprised at how many people I passed during the swim.
Spotting was great and my Wife and Kids were able to walk the Canal along side me. I gave them a big goofy smile every couple of minutes to let them know I was doing good. Tried telling them I love them but typically just drank water when I yelled out on the breath. Still was the highlight of the race seeing them each time I came up for air.
What would you do differently?:
Nothing...I worked on pacing at 2:10 and finished at 2:08. My practice spotting to the front and side worked out and I am very happy with the swim.
Cap removal: Good
Helmet on: Good
Run with bike: Yes
I put my Garmin in a ziplock and wrapped with a little tape at the base then shoved it in my cap. This worked great, I just ripped the plastic open on the run to the bike and clipped it on.
The family made up a couple of signs for me but it was really long and I struggled to read it all on my way out of transition. Gave me something to think about while I was out on the course. I love those guys.
What would you do differently?:
Put my sock on right side up the first time. :)
01:12:12 | 24.85 miles | 20.65 mile/hr
HR jumped a little high due to stress rather than effort. Settled in at about 155 for the duration of the ride.
Course: Parts of the course were miserably rough with huge potholes. 1 railroad crossing that was filled with 2X4's in the gaps to try and smooth it out. Slight head wind for about 5 miles on the out and mostly flat.
Road: Potholes Dry
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
I had a goal of 18MPH and averaged 20.7. I knew I was pacing pretty high and debated on slowing up a bit but felt really good so held steady. I am ecstatic about this pace and the bike. Had no idea I would be able to finish it up like that.
Had an equipment malfunction because of the rough roads. Sat up in the hoods to climb hill. Hit a bump and the right brake hood slid down the bar about 2 inches. Made for interesting shifting and braking. Most of my time was spent on the aero bars so not that big of a deal, just a little weird feeling the position.
Rounding the corner from loop one, I spotted my wife first and then my daughter noticed me. Pointed at her and made sure I had her attention. Very cool.
What would you do differently? Nothing
Jumping off bike: Average
Running with bike: Average
Racking bike: Good
Shoe and helmet removal: Below average
Legs were a little wobbly on the dismount but started working again after about 100 yards.
01:02:29 | 06.21 miles | 10m 04s min/mile
HR Goal was 160 and I had to work pretty hard to keep it there. Creep set in around the 4 mile mark but I was almost done so I let it climb up to around 166. This would not allow me to run at a 8:30 pace but 10 was OK as long as I kept moving forward.
Course: Along the White River crossing over the bridge and down the other side on the way back. Mostly flat.
Keeping cool: Good
Drinking: Just right
Had to pee something terrible coming off the bike at the first opportunity on the run I found a spot to go. Wasted about 2 minutes, ughh, could not get it to stop.
Right thigh cramped about 2 miles in, quick stop and stretch and it worked itself out. Also thanks to the dude that passed by offering some encouragement, it helped. Also the lady with the Cowbell App on her iPhone at the turnaround was pretty funny. Gotta have more cowbell.
Cardio was great and never really felt winded but my legs were feeling like lead weights by about the 3rd mile. It took allot to keep them swinging and I opted to walk through the water stations at mile 4 and 5. This seemed to help and I felt pretty good towards the end.
What would you do differently?:
Walked around for a bit and finally grabbed a seat to relax. Ate a blueberry muffin and chugged a water. Although muffins are not typically part of my nutrition plan, they looked good and I was hungry. Could only finish about half of it and started to feel a little sick, it was really, really good though and I struggled with the decision to chuck it or finish it. Ended up throwing it out.
What limited your ability to perform faster: Lack of training.
Great race and cool venue. If I don't do Steelhead Half Ironman next year I will back in Indy for this race.
Official - Sortable - Tri-Indy 2010 Olympic Distance Results
Thursday, July 29, 2010
My daughter who likes to accompany me to the gym and typically enjoys a swim along side me decided she wanted to do a Triathlon. Other than lessons 4 or 5 years ago she really has no formal training as a swimmer but does pretty well considering. Most of what she knows she picked up watching other swimmers at the pool and occasionally asking me a question, although rare. You know us parents really don’t know anything anyway. We did a little research and found an IronKids branded event in Carmel Indiana. After a brief discussion she decided to she wanted to sign up. I probably pushed a little, dunno, but she seemed excited and I know I was.
Obviously with on 300 or so participants the setup was not quite as fancy as what you would see at an IronMan event but still better than most local tri’s. A couple of vendors selling their wares along with “Team Winter” who, as we later found out, the ambassador for IronKids. Very nice young girl who had lost her Dad to Prostate Cancer formed a team and raised roughly 250K through her foundation. She also took a few minutes to speak about both her foundation and the event to come. Well spoken young lady and I am sure that her Dad is smiling down on her, as a Dad I know I was. For more information on Team Winter and her Foundation visit: http://www.teamwinter.org
Up at 5AM. She had a couple of spoonfuls of Peanut butter from the jar, as did I. Washed down with a few sips of Gatorade. Packed up the bike and off to the race venue. We were still unsure of the bike route so decided we would drive it once that morning. It was still dark and we never could find one of the turns which began to create some undue stress in the car. Opted to just head on to the race and plan on the course marshals helping guide her.
It was raining off and on when we arrived so we setup transition and then covered her stuff with an extra towel that was in the back of the car. Just like any other triathlon, no outside assistance is allowed once the starting gun fires. Spent some time with her going over her plan and making sure she was comfortable with how it was laid out. I think at this point I was getting way to detailed about instructions and advice, settled myself down and we headed over to the swim start.
The Senior division was to start prior to Morgan’s event. We were instructed that the Intermediate’s would not be able to start until the last Sr. has left transition on the run. This meant roughly another hour before she would get her turn, however, she would get about 10 minutes in transition to make any changes, adjustments or whatever. We used this time to walk through her transitions without many distractions so she had a mental image of what to do and where to go when she came in from the swim and bike. The rain had also cleared up and the sun was out so we opted to remove towel that was covering her gear which might help minimize clutter and fuss.
Each age group was broken out into 9, 10 and 11 year old Girls and Boys. Starting with the 11 year old boys first they were instructed to do a staggered start entering the lazy river and exiting at the same point. While we were all a nervous wreck Morgan seemed to be pretty relaxed and just ready to get started. Great start for her and she seemed to quickly find her pace although this was her first time swimming in a crowd so I think she was little surprised by the splashing about that took place. At one point she seemed to have taken a nice drink of water from a swimmer that was running up next to her. The lazy river does what most do and it waves and meanders around about a 200 meter loop. The jets were turned off so there was no help from the current, in fact at a couple of points the jets, possibly filters, were still running and several kids struggled to get past them as they slowed to a crawl over them.
New bike and she is not used to shifting gears. We practiced prior to her race and found a gear that she was comfortable in on flat ground and the plan was to just not worry about shifting for now. The return from the first loop she was looking pretty good. There was a course marshal that was helping guide the participants on which way to go depending on whether they were finishing or heading out on their second lap. I really only had one complaint about the race and perhaps I am biased but the course marshal was standing at the base of the fork in the road. Kids were coming up a slight incline and it allowed for very little warning on what to do next. My daughter was one of the ones that got confused by the instructions and went right instead of left. As did the young man behind her. Realizing her error she braked and tried to make the turn which also caused the kid behind her to run her over.
While this was a low speed crash it was still quite frightening and I was looking around for my wife to see if she had also seen it. One of the course marshals ran to their aid and had her up and talking to him in a few moments. I also arrived and went through the typical questions trying to remain calm so as to not upset her further. After a minute or two she gathered herself together, wiped her tears and got back on the bike heading out for lap two. I have never been more proud of her than I was at that very moment. Leg is bleeding a bit, hip is hurting but she insisted she was OK and wanted to continue.
It was a much longer time on this second lap and I was starting to worry about how she was feeling. After what seemed like an eternity she rounded the corner and her legs were going about 110 RPM’s. During the wreck the chain was knocked down the little ring and she was working her tail off to go about 5 or 6 MPH. Should have spent more time learning to shift, my fault. Ughh. Either way she was still moving forward and looked to be having fun again.
I was able to run up next to her along the chute and out onto the run course. She said her knee and hip were still hurting but she wanted to finish. I told her it was OK if she bowed out but she insisted. I told her to walk if she needed to and just get through it. This is supposed to be fun so enjoy it and don’t worry about your time. She slowed to a walk shortly after the turn onto the course and was quickly down the hill and out of site.
My son decided he would run to another vantage point and watch for her. Once she was spotted he ran to her side to provide encouragement. I don’t know what he was saying to her but you could see his arms swinging and clapping. Watching from afar it almost brought me to tears to see how my kids have grown from these little tiny babies to independent souls. When they are at home they fight like cats and dogs but at that moment it was clear how he really feels. This was now proud papa moment number 2 in the span of less that 20 minutes.
Once she caught site of the finish her pace picked up and she began to run again. I could see the pain diminish and the smile was starting to return. Into the chute and across the finish she was awarded her medal and it was announced that she was an IronKid. I am not sure that she heard it announced across the PA so we all made sure to remind her for the next several hours and now days.
She slept like a baby on the trip home and knee and hip pain is gone. We just realized that next year she will be moving up to Seniors since her Birthday is in Dec so even though she is only 11 she will be racing with the 12 year olds. When asked how she feels about it she just shrugs her shoulders, perhaps it’s too soon to discuss.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
After my last race in April I had more or less lost my passion for it and was finding it more and more challenging to get myself motivated for anything about 3 miles or so. Arriving at the park last night I had a planned 3 or 4 mile easy recovery run. Rounding the corner from the trail I was on I was reminded that there was a 2 mile nature loop that had just opened in a neighborhood nearby. The weather was perfect in the mid 80’s and humidity was at a manageable level. If you are from the south you know how humidity can be a complete game changer in relation to outside temperatures.
My decision went from turning left down the typical path of monotony times 3, it’s a 1 mile loop or straight ahead and out of the park boundary to see if I can figure out how to get to the new place. I debated with myself briefly before determining that a 6 or 7 mile adventure run would be much more fun than 3 miles of the same’ol.
My wife and I had walked this trail a week or so prior but I had no idea how to get there from here. The wildflowers were in bloom, there was a small vegetable garden at one point and a small decking overlook that took you out into some wetlands that was full of fish, turtles and likely other wildlife that I did not stick around long enough to see. Many varieties of birds were seen either jumping from the brush or just flying overhead. Truly a paradise and a gem of the city that likely many people are completely unaware of.
The return back I found a new entrance to the park and realized it used to be the grounds of Central Kentucky Lunatic Asylum. The adjacent property has Central State Hospital but I had no idea there used to be something other than the park here. Apparently a grand complex with 2 signature 60 foot towers built in 1874 and later demolished in 1996. I got lost in the woods nearby trying to find my way back to the main trail, which as it turned out I was about 50 feet away the entire time but could not figure out how to get there. There is also a cave that runs under the park I have spent the last year running in. What the heck, it’s a shame that the entrance is defaced with graffiti and rubbish but perhaps when I have more time I am going to have to explore this area of the park more.
In the end I made the right decision in breaking the routine and finding a new path. At the expense of sounding hokey I was also reminded that life in general is no different. I have always been one to go right or left when everyone else says to go straight. While it will often leads to a dead end or may even circle back to the beginning it sometimes leads to new adventures that had I continued down the same path I would have missed. Life is about the journey not the destination and I will get there eventually but not without running into a few walls, getting lost in the wilderness or circling back to the start to get my bearings again. Besides had it not been for all my wrong turns I would have never met my Wife or had my two wonderful kids. Life is Good!
This new trail was funded by one of our local businessmen and founder of Papa Johns pizza, John Schnatter. Among his many contributions to the pizza industry he is also a philanthropist, outdoor enthusiast and cyclist. “John Schnatter and his Evergreen Real Estate team have created a priceless legacy for Louisville and an inspiring model for other landowners and companies nationwide. He chose to preserve priceless land, create a first-class, state-of-the-art trail and offer these amenities for the benefit of the public.” ~ American Trails
So thanks Papa for providing the city with such a beautiful venue in which to enjoy the nature around us. If you have not visited this park you can drive there and park in the Anchorage lot at Evergreen and Lagrange.
I also worked for Papa Johns for a couple of years while in a career transistion. Had it not been for that Pizza delivery job I may not be where I am today. So the next time the family ask for Pizza I will have to insist on Papa John’s.
American Trails Anchorage Greenway
ETA: If your listening Papa, where can a guy get one of those slick Papa Johns cycling kits?
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
OK, so it’s now week 2 of getting serious and still no real progress. Probably did not help that I ate everything in site over the weekend and chugged a gallon of Diet Mountain Dew.
Trying to begin working out during lunch this week. I am not sure that I can keep it up without working out an arrangement with my Boss. The last 2 days it has taken me 1:15 to get a quick workout in and I am left feeling rushed and did not really get as much done as I would like. Need closer to 1:45 to finish everything. Will be discussing with him this week and hopefully I can come in early or leave later and take a longer lunch.
Weight was at 177 on Monday, hopefully I can drop off some this week as I am really going to try and up my workouts and keep away from nuts as much as possible. Although it’s difficult as those little buggers are so freaking good.
I do have some good news, since beginning strength training about a month ago I noticed the pull on the swim is much better. This is from doing pushups, dips and sometimes fooling around with weights. Roughly 20 minutes at the end of each run is all I have been doing but it is paying off big time. Typically towards the end of a hard 800 my hand will begin to wave and wobble a little through the water but it was pulling straight and strong with every stroke. Now I just need to work on my form a bit and perhaps I might actually get back down to my 1:50 X 100 Meter time instead of the 2:05 mark that I have been hovering at for the last couple of months.
OK, need to go fill up on some more water and flush out that mountain dew poison that I so love.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
I also stubbed my index finger which is swollen to about 2 times it’s normal size. It is throbbing to my heart beat which is blows but on the plus side I had to take my ring off prior to swimming before so it would not slide off. No chance my ring is coming off now.
Lunch: Chicken Roulade w/Bacon & Swiss, Steamed Broccoli & Cauliflower
Snack: Carbmaster Strawberry Yogurt
Dinner: Turkey, Pepperoni w/American in a Crepe
Snack: 2 oz peanuts
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Lunch: Crepe filled with 2 eggs, 2 bacon and 1 slice of cheese
Snack: Atkins Bar
Dinner: Crepe filled with grilled chicken, 1 bacon, 1 oz swiss
Snack: 1 oz peanuts
No greens today, I just completely skipped them. Need to make up for that today.
Was not feeling good on Monday so I called work and slept in. Ended up sleeping until around 11:30 which is what I needed I guess as I have not been sleeping well lately. Headache eventually cleared up as well which allowed me to get my workout in.
Very proud of both of my kids and my nephew. I pushed them pretty hard last night and they all responded. The plan I put in place I was hoping would cover roughly an hour and we finished up in 1:01 with a total distance covered according to my GPS of 3.29 miles. It was pretty hot out though so we did make sure to take a short 2-3 minute water break between each interval. We plan to do 4 workouts per week alternating between the two. I have posted the plan below and please feel free to critique it. We used a soccer field at a school near my house so the laps are around the field.
Day One Arms-Shoulders-Core
a. 10 Minute Slow Jog
2. First Interval
i. Forward Band
ii. Pushups Military
iii. Back Band
iv. Pushups Std
v. Side Band
vi. Side Plank
vii. Side Band
viii. Side Plank
3. Second Interval
a. Legs and Shoulders
i. High Knees
ii. Farmers Carry
iii. Butt Kicks
iv. Overhead Carry
v. Sprint Forward/Back
vi. Farmers Carry
viii. Overhead Carry
4. Third Interval
a. Alternate Sprint/Core
i. Sprint Up/Back
ii. Crunch’s until the other returns
iii. Sprint Up/Back
iv. Leg Lifts until the other returns
v. Repeat each 1X
vi. Easy Recovery Jog
Day 2 Legs-Core
a. 10 Minute Slow Jog
2. First Interval
i. Forward Band
ii. Pushups Military
iii. Back Band
iv. Pushups Std
v. Side Band
vi. Side Plank
vii. Side Band
viii. Side Plank
3. Second Interval
a. Legs and Core
i. Bear Crawl
ii. Step Ups on Bench
iii. Crab Crawl
iv. Calf Raises
v. Wheel Barrel (1 Person up and back)
vi. Step Ups
vii. Wheel Barrel (1 Person up and back)
viii. Frog Jumps
x. Forward Leg Dips
xii. Reverse Leg Dips
4. Third Interval
a. Alternate Sprint/Core
i. Sprint Up/Back
ii. Crunch’s until the other returns
iii. Sprint Up/Back
iv. Leg Lifts until the other returns
v. Repeat each 1X
vi. Easy Recovery Jog 5 Minutes
Monday, June 21, 2010
Went to the lake on Friday night and had a pretty good time. Ate too many peanuts as usual and sipped a couple of beers around the camp fire Saturday. All-in-all a great trip and had lots of fun. Thanks Bro and Sis for the invite and we will surely come back anytime you will have us. I was pretty excited to try wakeboarding for the first time. Turns out all I did was boat dragging. Could not figure out the timing on turning the nose of the board up to get me out of the water. Still fun though and I there was no doubt that I was properly hydrated after several attempts.
I was also a little disappointed that I did not bring my goggles to the lake for some open water swimming practice. Woke up this morning in serious pain in my thigh and head from the board hitting me as I fell. Opted to stay home for the first part of the day from work to heal up a bit. However, my head still feels like it’s in a vice and I am more or less planning to just try and get through the day.
My Nephew comes in this week and I am planning to work both him and my Son out. They are both planning to try out for sports in their Freshman year of High School and practice starts soon. Figured this might help them get a leg up. Plus I will do the workout right along with them so I kill two birds with one stone.
Diet -- Did not log it all but it came down to lots of chicken some greens and snacking on some peanuts.
That’s all for now.
Friday, June 18, 2010
Spoke to a guy at the Trail Store that has done several triathlons including Iron Man and he recommended the Selle saddle. The model escapes me right now but I mounted it last night and went for a short ride to test it out. Stopped a few times and ran speeds all over the map trying to get a feel for it. First impressions are pretty good. Will be curious to see how it does on rides exceeding 30-40 miles. Thanks to the Trail Store in Lyndon though for helping me out and love the loaner saddle program they have.
Snack: Strawberry Carbmaster Yogurt
Lunch: Mixed Green Salad w/Ranch, 6 oz grilled chicken
Dinner: Mixed Green Taco Salad, way to much cheese, sour cream, guacamole and what looked like around 6 oz of ground beef. The downside to eating out is that in the end you really just do not know. I always skip the shell and beans in taco salads and since this is a small family restaurant I would not expect they would have to many additives though. I know one thing, I was full when I got done.
Snack: My nemisis – shelled peanuts. Started in on these dumb things and ended up eating probably 3 oz of peanuts eating blindly while watching game. BTW…Celtics had that game and choked it away in the 4th. It was pretty clear they missed Perkins.
Activities: 45 Minute Bike Ride with a couple of stops to adjust seat. Road my 5.5 mile running loop twice so 11 miles.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
On a side not…strong ammonia smell in my sweat which means I am burning protein for fuel again. A good sign that the liver is doing it’s job and burning some protein to create glucose.
Planning a short run tonight followed up with a Triathlon group training class held at Core Studio’s. Hopefully energy returns prior because this class has left me feeling pretty miserable in the past.
Breakfast: Did not partake again…I am seeing a trend
Lunch: Pulled Pork – again, Mixed Green Salad w/ 1 slice bacon chopped, sliced almonds, shredded swiss
Snack: Strawberry Carbmaster Yogurt
Dinner: Bacon/Swiss stuffed chicken breast (4 oz), Green Beans
Snack: 1 oz peanuts
Run: 5.5 Miles
Strength: Dips, Pushups, Core
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Breakfast: No -- Not sure why I have been skipping. I typically never miss breakfast.
Lunch: 4 oz Chicken Salad, 1 cup steamed Broccoli, 1 slice american cheese
Snack: 1 oz peanuts
Dinner: 6oz pulled pork, 2 cups of Mixed Salad Greens w/Ranch, Sesame Seeds, 1 oz shredded Swiss, 1 slice bacon crumbled.
Exercise: 1.5 hour spin class
A long day at work and still not used to being back at it.
Enough chatter though, I am planning to make a push to 160 and need to keep my blog up so that I can stay motivated. Will try to update each day with what I ate and what type of exercise I was able to put in.
Monday June 14th 2010
Lunch: Small Mixed Green Salad w/Ranch, 3-4 oz Chicken Salad
Snack: Carbmaster Strawberry Yogurt
Dinner: 2 Eggs, 4 oz pulled pork
Snack: 2 oz peanuts
Run: 4.43 Miles
Strength: 30 Min (Core, Dips, Pushups, Freeweights)
Planned to run outside but the temp was pretty high so I headed off to the gym. Turns out it may have been hotter in the gym and with no breeze it was pretty miserable. Next time I just need to HTFU and stay outdoors. I hate treadmills!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
BLOOMINGTON -- Triathlete Mike Bernico isn't sure how much he weighed at his peak two years ago. His scale didn't go higher than 380, and the needle was pinned.
"I was almost 400," guessed the technical analyst at State Farm Insurance Cos.
He stood 5 feet, 10 inches tall and his waist was 50 inches around. Today, Bernico, 32, weighs 178 pounds as he prepares for the upcoming Tri Sharks Classic Triathlon at Comlara Park near Hudson on June 5. His body fat measures just 8.1 percent. His waist is 32 inches.
Bernico made small lifestyle changes at first.
"Like not having an entire pizza for dinner," he said with a smile.
Better menus and portion control came next. At 330 pounds, he started strength training. He bought a recumbent bicycle trainer and started to spin his legs. His knee withstood the challenge. After a time, he bought a road bike and rode outside. By the end of 2008, he could go up to 60 miles at a time.
That's when someone urged him to complete a triathlon, where participants are timed as they swim, bike and run. One of the fastest growing sports in America, participation grew by nearly 70 percent to nearly 1.1 million from 2006-2008, according to the Outdoor Foundation. USA Triathlon, the sports governing organization, had 53,000 members in 2004. That number is more than twice that today.
Approached with the idea of being a triathlete, Bernico's response was, "No way."
But he found a couch-to-5K (3.1 mile) training course that gradually ramps up running time and distance. He practiced swimming. He did a short triathlon in Sullivan in April 2009.
Last June, he found himself on the shore of Evergreen Lake at Comlara Park with other triathletes ready to hit the water at the start of the Tri-Sharks Classic Triathlon, a sprint-distance race named after Bloomington's triathlon club. Athletes swim 600 yards, bike 12.5 miles and run 3.1 miles.
McLean County is becoming a hub of triathlon and endurance sports in Illinois and the Midwest. The field of 600 fills up in a matter of minutes when registration opens several months before the event, said race director Colleen Klein. Bernico will be joined by his fiancée, Lana Fryer, 27, a Bloomington pharmacist, who will compete in her first triathlon.
Mike Mikel of Bloomington also will do his first sprint triathlon. Mikel started bike riding and later added swimming and running to get back in shape before he turned 40. He signed up for the triathlon when he realized he was doing all three sports during workouts.
"This (competing in triathlons) gives me another goal," said Mikel, who also is using triathlons as a way to raise money for The Children's Foundation of Children's Home + Aid, where he is a board member. (See the outdoor column on F-1.) The Children's Foundation will be title charity sponsor for the Tri Sharks Classic in 2011.
As for Bernico, he plans to do an Olympic-distance race at the Evergreen International Triathlon July 17 at Comlara Park, where he placed fifth in his age group last year. Distances are doubled to 1,200 yards in the water, 25 miles on a bike and a 6.2 mile run. He also will compete at Steelhead, a half Ironman in Bentown Harbor, Mich., at the end of July.
In 2011, he plans to complete an Ironman triathlon, which many consider the most grueling athletic test of all. The race tests the limits of physical endurance with a swim of 2.4 miles, a bike competition of 112 miles and a marathon distance run of 26.2 miles. Competitors must complete the entire 140.6 miles in 17 hours. Bernico, who blogs at http://iron-path.blog
spot.com, weighs and logs everything he eats now. Those small healthy changes have led to a diet without processed foods.
"I'm very careful," he said.
Still, he exercises so much now he still loses weight even though he's eating a normal 3,000 calories a day. The irony amuses him.
"I'll just have to eat more," he said, with a laugh.
Perhaps more important than the weight loss is the attitude change that has accompanied his transition, he said. He's gone through tough times with a more positive outlook.
"It's changed everything in my life," Bernico said. "It's brought a different perspective into things. I've learned about nutrition, staying active and healthy, but I've learned no matter how bad things get, no matter what happens, I can suffer through it. After you do a triathlon, there is nothing you can't do. It's the triathlete mindset."
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
I am not even sure what to say about this. The plan basically has you replace breakfast, snack and lunch with a cookie. For dinner you should be eating a sensible meal and viola! The pounds will just melt away!
The diet should work assuming you keep your dinner sensible by reducing the total caloric intake for the day. 3 cookies per day amounts to 450 calories and that along with my definition of a sensible meal of 600 calories should keep you right around 1050 calories. For most people that should be restricted enough to have some success.
Perhaps it sour grapes since I did not think of wrapping a cookie in a pretty package and stamping “Hollywood” and “Diet” on the label. We all see the tabloids and photos of the super stars living in sunny Hollywood and who doesn’t want to look like that. However, this has to be the most absurd thing I have heard of in a while. The amazing thing is that people are actually buying them!
How about this…
I will agree to supply you with a package of Chip’s Ahoy cookies, about the same nutritionally, for the low price of 9.99. In fact if you act now I will even break out a Sharpie and write “diet” on it. The great thing about Chip’s Ahoy is that you can actually have 3 for each meal replacement or a total of 9 cookies per day!
If you’re interesting just shoot me an email and I will provide you with my Paypal info so we can arrange for payment.
Serving Size: 3 Cookies (32g)
Ingredients Amount Per Serving
Total Fat 8g
Saturated Fat 2.5g
Trans Fat 0g
Total Carbohydrates 21g
Dietary Fiber 1g
Hollywood Chocolate Chip
Serving Size: 1 Cookie (40g)
Ingredients Amount Per Serving
Total Fat 4.5g
Saturated Fat 2g
Trans Fat 0g
Total Carbohydrates 23g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
After 15 tries, Jeff Rhodes thought this was going to be his day - the day he would qualify for the Ford Ironman World Championship. He was racing with all the top men in his 40-44 age group in St. George, Utah last Saturday, feeling on top of the world. Two miles to go on the bike, though, things went horribly awry when he rolled a tire going around a corner.
Rhodes hit a brick wall and flew over his handlebars. No sooner had he hit the ground than he tried to get back on his bike. He saw the tire was off. Ever tried to get a tubular back on a rim? Ever tried to do that with one hand, because your other arm won’t work? Rhodes deflated the tire, put it back on the rim, re-inflated it with a quick-fill, then realized that his shoulder was up by his ear. He popped his shoulder back in place and tried to get back on his bike again. This time he realized his chain was off, too.
When he finally was able to get back on his bike, Rhodes managed the last two miles of the ride by holding his shoulder – it wasn’t just dislocated, he’d broken his collarbone, too.
When he managed to get some medical attention in T2, he was assured that he had broken his collarbone and should get into an ambulance for some medical attention.
“I told them I could still qualify for Kona,” Rhodes said in an interview today. “I got them to help me change my shoes.”
It only took three steps before Rhodes realized that there was no Kona qualifying for him last Saturday. Rather than quit, though, he was determined that he would finish the race, and started walking.
“It never even crossed my mind – I was going to get through it,” he said. “This was my 16th Ironman and I’ve never DNF’d. Last year in Japan I had an asthma attack during the swim. I had to pull myself along from buoy to buoy. It was the closest I’ve ever come to death. I knew I could get through the run with some shoulder pain.”
So he started walking. Meanwhile, just behind him, Quinton Berry, one of the five men from Orange County who had been training together for Ford Ironman St. George, started the marathon. Like Rhodes, Berry was having an incredible day – he was also in the hunt for a Kona spot. Berry ran up to his friend and stopped to walk with him.
“You’re having a great race,” Rhodes said. “You keep running. I’ll be fine.”
Berry made it a few feet up the road and turned around.
“At some point you’re going to need some help,” he told his friend. “If you’re going to walk it, I’m going to walk it with you.”
A short while later, another of the group, Scott Callendar, came across his two training buddies. He started walking, too. He and Berry took turns finding ice packs for their friend. They got his food at aid stations. They tracked down ibuprofen from the medical crew. The re-strapped his shoulder.
The three came across the line together. It was their slowest Ironman. It was also the best.
“This was the best Ironman I’ve ever done,” Berry wrote in an e-mail to Rhodes.
“It’s what you do for a friend,” he told me. “It was pretty impressive to see the support he had out there. There were some pros out there who said they were inspired by him.”
Pros? These three inspired an entire community. You want friendship? You want perseverance? You want grit and determination?
They showed it at Ford Ironman St. George last Saturday. It might not have been the fastest Ironman, but it will go down in history as one of the most inspiring and impressive of Ironman achievements.
Rhodes is registered to race at Subaru Ironman Canada later this summer.
“I know that I’m going to qualify there,” he said. “Those bumps in the road, you learn a lot from them.”
I think we can all learn a lot from Jeff Rhodes, Quinton Berry and Scott Callendar.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Eat less saturated fat: that has been the take-home message from the U.S. government for the past 30 years. But while Americans have dutifully reduced the percentage of daily calories from saturated fat since 1970, the obesity rate during that time has more than doubled, diabetes has tripled, and heart disease is still the country’s biggest killer. Now a spate of new research, including a meta-analysis of nearly two dozen studies, suggests a reason why: investigators may have picked the wrong culprit. Processed carbohydrates, which many Americans eat today in place of fat, may increase the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease more than fat does—a finding that has serious implications for new dietary guidelines expected this year.
In March the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a meta-analysis—which combines data from several studies—that compared the reported daily food intake of nearly 350,000 people against their risk of developing cardiovascular disease over a period of five to 23 years. The analysis, overseen by Ronald M. Krauss, director of atherosclerosis research at the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute, found no association between the amount of saturated fat consumed and the risk of heart disease.
The finding joins other conclusions of the past few years that run counter to the conventional wisdom that saturated fat is bad for the heart because it increases total cholesterol levels. That idea is “based in large measure on extrapolations, which are not supported by the data,” Krauss says.
One problem with the old logic is that “total cholesterol is not a great predictor of risk,” says Meir Stampfer, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health. Although saturated fat boosts blood levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, it also increases “good” HDL cholesterol. In 2008 Stampfer co-authored a study in the New England Journal of Medicine that followed 322 moderately obese individuals for two years as they adopted one of three diets: a low-fat, calorie-restricted diet based on American Heart Association guidelines; a Mediterranean, restricted-calorie diet rich in vegetables and low in red meat; and a low-carbohydrate, nonrestricted-calorie diet. Although the subjects on the low-carb diet ate the most saturated fat, they ended up with the healthiest ratio of HDL to LDL cholesterol and lost twice as much weight as their low-fat-eating counterparts.
Stampfer’s findings do not merely suggest that saturated fats are not so bad; they indicate that carbohydrates could be worse. A 1997 study he co-authored in the Journal of the American Medical Association evaluated 65,000 women and found that the quintile of women who ate the most easily digestible and readily absorbed carbohydrates—that is, those with the highest glycemic index—were 47 percent more likely to acquire type 2 diabetes than those in the quintile with the lowest average glycemic-index score. (The amount of fat the women ate did not affect diabetes risk.) And a 2007 Dutch study of 15,000 women published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that women who were overweight and in the quartile that consumed meals with the highest average glycemic load, a metric that incorporates portion size, were 79 percent more likely to develop coronary vascular disease than overweight women in the lowest quartile. These trends may be explained in part by the yo-yo effects that high glycemic-index carbohydrates have on blood glucose, which can stimulate fat production and inflammation, increase overall caloric intake and lower insulin sensitivity, says David Ludwig, director of the obesity program at Children’s Hospital Boston.
Will the more recent thinking on fats and carbs be reflected in the 2010 federal Dietary Guidelines for Americans, updated once every five years? It depends on the strength of the evidence, explains Robert C. Post, deputy director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion. Findings that “have less support are put on the list of things to do with regard to more research.” Right now, Post explains, the agency’s main message to Americans is to limit overall calorie intake, irrespective of the source. “We’re finding that messages to consumers need to be short and simple and to the point,” he says. Another issue facing regulatory agencies, notes Harvard’s Stampfer, is that “the sugared beverage industry is lobbying very hard and trying to cast doubt on all these studies.”
Nobody is advocating that people start gorging themselves on saturated fats, tempting as that may sound. Some monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, such as those found in fish and olive oil, can protect against heart disease. What is more, some high-fiber carbohydrates are unquestionably good for the body. But saturated fats may ultimately be neutral compared with processed carbs and sugars such as those found in cereals, breads, pasta and cookies.
“If you reduce saturated fat and replace it with high glycemic-index carbohydrates, you may not only not get benefits—you might actually produce harm,” Ludwig argues. The next time you eat a piece of buttered toast, he says, consider that “butter is actually the more healthful component.”
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
So I know that I am trying really hard to stay natural and eat mostly fresh ingredients. Let’s face it though, sometimes life gets in the way and we just have to make due with what’s at hand. On a typical day I will make a couple of eggs for breakfast, simple, tasty and good fuel to start the day.
On my way to work a few days back I had seen these Met-Rx bars. They were on special at Kroger and I thought, why not, perhaps pickup a couple of them and have them for an emergency meal. I am not immune to this now as I will typically keep a stash of the Atkins bars on hand for just such an event.
So reading the label it says 32g Protein and 2g Sugar. Great! I remember reading of peoples experiences to these sugar alcohol’s that included some digestive problems. The particular SA in question here was 27g of Maltodextrin. Without getting to geeky it is essentially derived from hydrolysis of starch (rice, corn, potato, etc). What you end up with is a very sweet white powder that is often used to sweeten soft drinks and best known as Splenda (mixed with sucralose).
OK, so onto my review. The bar was quite tasty however did have a bit of a bitter chalky aftertaste. I think if you regularly eat Snickers or Reese’s you would disgusted by this thing but coming from someone who has not had a bite of a candy bar in over 2 years my taste is probably less sensitive to real sugar.
So within an hour of eating this bar I found my stomach had swollen to what I was sure was 2-3 times it actual size. To avoid being completely disgusting I spent the better part of the morning seated somewhere other than my desk. After contemplating going home around 12 or so I finally started to get some relief. For the life of me I could not figure out what was wrong. I have eaten the Atkins bars enough and never had such an experience.
After discussing with a co-worker he said he would take the other bar. So I dropped it by his desk. As I was leaving work that evening I ran into him in the parking lot and he explained that he no longer wanted the bar. While reading the ingredients list he noticed some fine print that included a Warning Label. Now from my perspective I though, who the heck looks for a Warning Label on a Protein Bar.
The label reads…
Warning: This product contains sugar alcohols, which may cause gastrointestinal discomfort. Excessive consumption may have a laxative effect.
Ackk, well that explains a lot. Not sure what “excessive” meant exactly but apparently is roughly the equivalent of one bar.
Bottom line, the bar was quite tasty but no substitute for real food and I would not recommend anyone consuming without first picking up a good book or some other reading material along with some tucks for the nether region.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
A little late, but better late than never. My training has been in the toilet of late because of increased workloads at both home and work. This is not a bad thing mind you but a simple reality of anyone trying to figure out how to balance family and work with a healthy lifestyle.
Having said that I was pretty nervous heading into this race. Planned to do some hill training all winter long and just never could find the time to do any hill repeats. Just takes to much time to drive to one of the parks that offers some of the hills to work on when I can get home and just go for a run from the house and be back home in an hour, hour and a half.
In addition to not spending anytime on the hills I had really not been getting my runs in at all like I should. In my head I was doing 20 miles or so a week, but upon closer inspection of my logs I am realizing it’s closer to 12-15. Ackk, with my long runs rarely exceeding 7 or 8 miles. I begin to review my training plan that I had so carefully thought out and planned each weeks run and tried to match it up to my logs. The plan looks great but the execution was terrible. Either way, enough of that, on to the race.
We are in the process of finishing our basement and to keep on schedule with the drywall crew that was coming on Monday had taken off from work on Thursday and Friday. Going from a desk job to actual work that requires you to be on your feet, up and down ladders, stooping, bending and generally doing everything that I don’t normally do made for a long 2 days leading up to the event. My plan was to work long on Thursday and then finish up by 5 on Friday. Head to my parents for an early Easter dinner on Friday night and then get to bed early. Honestly, it all went as planned and I was in bed by 11PM that night, which is early for me.
Alarm goes off at 5:30 AM, nice aroma of freshly brewed coffee from my new machine the Wife gave me for my Birthday, thanks honey. Quick shower and then almond butter spread on a deli thin for breakfast. Downed a quick glass of water along with 2 Advil to help with hydration and then it’s time for some morning brew.
Head down to the event and have time to stop by Kroger for all to use the restroom prior to the start. Find myself staring a bottle of 5 hour energy and wondering if it would help my performance. I had tried this stuff once before but not prior to exercise and split it with my wife so that we could stay awake for date night. Pathetic, I know. So I made the decision to pick up a bottle and finished roughly half of it. Phew, that was not bad and I feel better already or at least that is what I was telling myself after committing a major race day error. NOTHING NEW ON RACE DAY! More on this later…
Off for a short warmup run of a mile or so then time to stretch. Met the family near the start and said my goodbyes. Since I have not said it yet, I love that they always come out and let me tell you some of these races have had brutal weather conditions. Cold and miserable would be an understatement. Love you guys and thanks!
I walk to the start and realize I waited to long, I am near the rear of some 7000 people. Head to the sidewalk and try working my way a little closer without much luck. Fireworks go off and now I realize that I am going to spend a good part of the beginning dodging, bobbing and weaving my way through traffic. Which is quite a bit of fun on shorter races but longer runs it takes to much energy and I just did not want to use up any excess as my terror of finishing at all was still in full affect. In addition to my typical race fears I am now starting to feel the 5 hour energy that seemed like such a good idea at the time begin to work it’s way back out of my system. Every other step has me burping this stuff up. I moved to the side of the road for fear of vomiting and continued on.
First 3 miles were going great, 8:30 pace which was right on target to finish below 1:30. Once I hit the park all bets were off. First hill was pretty uneventful. Did not pace by speed but by heart rate as I knew keeping it at or around 160 at the peak of the hills was critical to keeping me below my lactate threshold. Second hill was not quite the same challenge as the first and I managed to eek my way over the top HR now at 162. Ackk. Long slow grade down and then comes the 3rd and final hill. It was easy to see from the lack of leaves on the trees that this one extended quite a ways and eventually out of site around a bend.
Made it to the first turn of this one and had slowed to what probably looked like crawling to onlookers but thankfully I was not alone and actually managed to pass a few that had given up. Finally made the turn and could see it was still another 100 yards to the top. Quick check of the HR and I am at 172. Pondered for a moment and decided to walk it as I did not want to risk doing more damage than I already had knowing there were still roughly 4 more miles to go. Again the 5 hour energy is still trying to find a path out of my system and I debate on several occasions on whether I should just stop and ram a finger down my throat to force it out and get it over with.
About this time I pass a guy on the side of road getting medical attention and as bad as I feel I am reminded that it could be worse. Crest the hill and now HR is back down to 135 or so and I am ready to go. Legs still a little sloppy on take off but eventually they begin to cooperate and start making that familiar pendulum motion that would be runners are so reliant on. Pretty steep downhill as well so I really only need to lean forward a little to continue my decent. Great for the heart but not so much for the knees. Trying to keep my speed down I was landing pretty hard so I eventually gave in and just let my body go about as fast as it wanted to go only limiting it when I started to feel out of control.
Out of the park and back to reality. My legs were really feeling it at this point. The only thing that felt good was knowing there were only 3 miles or so to go. The wind had picked up considerably since exiting the park and the protection of the foliage and you could feel and smell the moisture in the air. As quickly as the wind picked up the rain came and it was a huge relief. As my pace picked up a bit from the cooling effect of the rain my thoughts turned to my wife and kids sitting there at end of the race waiting in what were likely miserable conditions for them.
On to the last mile and I can see that overpass that once haunted me coming up. Made the right turn to cross over the hill and my pace quickened with the sound of Rocky playing in my head. Probably looked a little foolish as I felt like I was perhaps dancing a bit on my way to the top but this little tiny overpass once forced me to stop for a rest en route to a football game. Now I am crossing over it after already running 9.5 miles.
I can see the stadium and my pain is gone. Make the last turn into the parking lot where the football team is hard at work to my right so like any fan I let out a “Go Cards!” as I pass. Then the final jaunt into the stadium and hitting the soft turf that I have spent so many Saturdays…and Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and I think even a Sunday once. Such is life of a Louisville fan, but I digress. Round the turn and hop, skip and jump on the finish. It’s over and I finished a race that had me ready to throw up the night prior. See my wife and kids along with my Brother, who also ran, and his family at the finish as well.
No time to waste as we were rushed off the field I assume to allow those other 5000 people to cross as well. Bottle of water and off to find and hug my family. I truly could not have done any of this without them there to support me. For my wife I know it has to be difficult to see me come home with lots to do and I do a quick change and back out the door I go for a run or swim. So glad she is understanding of this and supports me. Thanks Honey, I love you.
Finished in 1:34:57 pacing at 9:30. My goal was 1:30 or a 9:00 pace. However, looking back I ran this same distance on New Years day and finished a minute slower on a flat and fast course. So there had to have been some improvement. My Brother kicked my butt at around 1:26 or something. Maybe next year, for now just happy I had the opportunity to participate.
Next up, pacing my Son this Saturday for his first ever race. The Goose Creek 5K. It’s a much smaller race and if he pushes he might have the opportunity to podium. No time goals for me on this one as my only concern is that Tyler finishes and feels good and has fun.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
If you don't know who Tony Horton is he is the creator of P90X. Recently he hosted a chat and went on a rant that include among other things personal responsibility. Some people might read his rant and be offended but I found it very motivating.
So for those of you that like to be coddled or patted on the head and told everything going to be OK you might not like what he has to say.
BTW...thanks to Kajun for passing this on.
Alright, sit back, and relax.
Let's go over a couple of things.
There seems to be a general lack of willpower,
and there also seems to be, like cani said, poor planning.
Showing up to a party hungry, never a good idea, you're screwed.
Now i could sit here and i could tell you little tips about how to help you control your eating habits,
improve the quality of your food, and i do it week after week, month after month,year after year
and it seems like the same people (i know who you are - you know who you are) continue to just let food win.
Am i correct?
I mean, you do the programs, and you come into the chat rooms and you go into message boards
and you're part of the community and you have been for years, and you lose some weight, and gain it back
then you lose some more, and gain back more, and it's just a cycle that continues.
Sometimes you take it seriously, sometimes you don't.
Blah, blah, blah!
Sad, boring and pathetic, really...
You blame it on your parents and you blame it on work
and you blame it on stress
and you blame it on poor planning,
or on the weather or lack of sleep
and you sort of take the blame, but not enough to make any changes.
I mean, if it doesn't matter
cuz apparently it doesn't
cuz if it did
this would no longer be a problem for most of you.
But the sad fact of the matter is, you know what to do!
It's not like this company is selling you some silly weight loss diet program that is asking you to eat funky portions of stupid food for the rest of your life.
You have temptations and you succumb to them. Period.
Now my job tonight is not to sit here and point fingers and call you names, and say that you are losers.
But it's time for a little tough love people.
As some of you know, i'm 50 and life is extraordinarily short.
I feel like i've lived 10 lives already and as we all get older, it doesn't get any easier, unless we do the right thing.
Succumbing to temptation based on outside influences and influences inside our heads
just makes life such a dull boring frustrating drag.
Is this what we want?
Is this good enough?
But what the hell you gonna do about it?
Because change is a bit** man.
But if you want the life that i think you think you deserve, then you have to do the opposite of what you're doing.
Cuz i gotta say, when i show up to events (team beachbody events or camps) and i see people who used to be fit who aren't, i just think, what happened?
And i know the economy is rough and things happen in life that are brutal, but since when does food solve any of our problems?
It makes things worse!
We need something to make us feel good for 10 seconds, but all it's doing is making our situation worse!
[lisaerin82] tony__how did you get into fitness? What keeps you going day in and day out? Do you take 'breaks' throughout the year?
Lisa, good question.
Which ties into this topic.
Because i have to!
Because you have to!
Because the alternative sucks!
Many people in this chat room know that it’s too vital, it's too important.
It makes life so much better. Not to do it makes for a lesser life.
So if you don't mind your lesser life keep on eating crap based on all your lame excuses.
I got into fitness because i wanted to look better, i stayed in fitness because i like feeling better.
I like the quality of my life to improve, because i understand that exercise and eating right does that.
I like being fit and i like being healthy.
I understand the importance of those things
i also understand that to achieve them, i have to eat right and exercise at least 6 days a week
my poor eating has diminished less and less over the last few months.
I've almost cut chocolate out. Which is hard for me.
I notice that when i get to that rough patch of 2 or 3 weeks when i'm trying to get off of any kind of a particular bad food habit the cravings go away and i feel better more often.
I sleep better.
My digestion is better.
My energy is up.
My moods are upbeat and positive more often.
Btw, for those of you that are struggling with your diet (which i know is probably more than 11 of you)
if you notice you're struggling in life, guess what?
That struggle comes with what you put in your mouth first, not visa versa
one causes the other.
It's not coincidence that your wack diet is part of your wack life.
Everybody read me?
Anybody think i'm talking to them directly?
How does that feel?
Kinda crappy, right?
As dr. Phil would say
how's that working out for you?
When this chat is over tonight i want you to walk away with some thoughts in your head that might not exist after a normal chat.
One thought or question i should say is... What am i gonna do about it?
Because right now you're not doing anything.
You're just letting life push you around.
Super lean, super ripped, super healthy, super strong people do everything right.
People that are pretty ripped, pretty healthy, pretty strong, do most things right
people that are not overweight, not unhealthy, but look ok do about half of the important things right.
I could keep going but you understand where i'm headed.
3 months ago, i was doing my 90/10 % plan and that was pretty good, you know, 6 pack, etc.
But when i cleaned it up more, i'm just leaner and i feel better.
It worked for me
and i don't miss the chocolate.
You kids need a plan.
Anybody want a plan right now?
Free of charge?
Now this plan is so simple it's gonna freak you out!
You have your pieces of paper and writing utensils ready?
At the top of a piece of paper write this;
i, [write your own name] hereby declare that i will follow the tony horton food plan for the next 30 days.
I'm gonna give you kids the hard core version not modified versions of the food plan.
Ok, pick up your pencils again.
for the next 30 days i will not eat white bread or anything made with enriched flour or processed flour
See ya later!
i will greatly reduce my dairy intake.
And for some of you no more dairy!
No more pizza with a ton of cheese!
No more milk!
No more ice cream!
Go buy some almond milk or rice milk.
Or i'll smack ya.
no more carbonated beverages.
No more pepsi.
No more coke.
No more 7 up.
No more sprite.
No more dr. Pepper.
No more diet pepsi.
No more diet coke.
No more zero coke.
No more mountain dew.
water and tea only!
If you're a coffee psycho, 1 cup a day.
Shut up and do it!
at least 2 of your meals a day there'd better be vegetables on your plate.
1 meal a day, there'd better be fruit.
here's how you're getting your protein.
Nuts, beans, fish, turkey, and chicken.
Shut up and do it!
Get off the red meat for a while.
I don't care about lean red meat.
Just get off of it!
for the first 2 weeks of your 30 day plan
write it down!
Write it down!
"oh, but tony, that's so hard, it takes time, what if i forget a pen? What if i've lost my pad of paper to write down what i've eaten? Does that mean i have to write down everything in my salad? What if there's avocado, peppers, mushrooms, nuts, in different kinds of salad, do i have to write it all down?"
shut up you whiny little bi*****!
If you want to live large and you want this microscopically short life of yours to be worth showing up for
then you'll make a plan.
You'll do what i say and things will be good!
Or you'll keep doing what you've been doing and then you'll just be what you are right now, or worse.
This country has turned into pre-rome, and the empire's about to collapse.
The only way we can begin to turn it around is to start taking care of ourselves first, so that we have the energy and enthusiasm to take care of the rest of the crap that is going south in our lives.
Poor eating habits and lack of physical movement has turned the vast majority of us into whiny little cry baby losers.
Far too many people are living in this state of quiet desperation.
It's like joe the plumber...
The guy, and not to get political, because it's not political at all.
Here's a guy pretending to be a plumber
when he's actually an unlicensed contractor who does plumbing, proclaiming that he has the money to buy this $250,000 plumbing business, when in actuality the plumbing business is actually a $100,000 plumbing business. He still owes back taxes and he makes less than $40k a year. Joe is making things up to make a point.
So joe the plumber needs to read law #5
get real joe!
We have to stop pretending that life is something other than what is actually happening to us.
The point i'm trying to make for those of you that are still a little confused is that we have to take control of our lives. The one that is happening, not the pretend one.
We have to take control of our eating.
We have to stop the fantasy version and start believing in the real one.
We have to stop pretending that things are going to get better because we just bought a new crystal, or our palm reading went well, or somebody else'll do it for us, or if we just hope or pray it'll get better on its own.
If you are not happy, it's because of you!
It's just you.
You and no one else.
Not your husband, not your wife.
Not your parents.
Not your work.
Not the weather.
None of it.
It's you and the information or lack thereof, inside your brain.
The more you know, the more you can do
i can get in here and show you little tricks about how to eat better or do pushups on your knees but the fact of the matter is success is a deeper more profound look within.
Are you with me people?
Can you dig it?
If you stick with the simple pieces to that puzzle or that plan, weight will come flying off.
Your body will change.
I don't want you to count calories.
I would like you to eat smaller meals.
I would like you to not eat a couple hours before you go to bed.
I also want to say that there's a list in life.
The good life list
getting 7 1/2 to 8 hours of sleep. It's not like you have to pass an exam to know how to do that
exercise 5_6 days a week. It's not like you have to ask for permission from someone else.
You just do it!
Eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein and not all the other garbage is how you stay healthy.
That’s not rocket science.
You know, stuff like brush your damn teeth twice a day.
Floss once in a while.
Don't blow out your credit card so you can't pay it off.
Choose patience over rage.
Be in the moment.
Enjoy the journey.
Don't be attached to the outcome.
Don't sweat the small stuff, because it's all small stuff.
Open the door.
Try new things.
Change is good.
Surround yourself with like_minded, upbeat, good humored people.
Okay, here's the book of the week
it's called "made to stick"
this book will help you formulate new habits, that stick.
The amazing thing about exercise and eating well...the outcome. If you're consistent.
It's the same for everyone.
I know i got on my box nice and tall here today but i just hate seeing smart people make the same mistakes
over and over again.
It's got to be frustrating.
When it come to health and fitness (in general) there’s 3 groups of people.
The first group is, people who don't know better.
They haven't come across this information yet. They're still buying into weight watchers, nutrisystem, herbal life and other programs that work as long as you use them.
But i don't know anybody who's been doing weight watchers for 15 years.
They’re "weight loss only" products that are temporary fixes.
These same folks are buying stupid ab chairs, ab lounges and some rotating pushup stands. This stuff is supposed to change your entire body?
Give me a break!
They don't know better so they get to be stuck.
Then there's category 2
people that come here and understand that exercise has to happen 5_6 days a week. Variety works!
There has to be intensity and consistency.
These people also understand that healthy food is part of the equation. When folks in category 2 discover this information they understand it's importance like air and water and live it.
Far too many people (there are some of you that are in this chat room) are in category 3
people who know better but aren't willing to apply the information.
It's like knowing how to breathe but deciding to constantly hold your breath to be miserable.
It's such a bummer.
This group of people are the saddest of all.
Not from my perspective, but from their own.
Does this sound like it makes sense to anyone in here?
So we know our plan, correct?
We know what to do, right?
We're gonna do it right?
The end result will be awesome!
You can all have what i have and i'm not that smart.
I just follow the rules.
I'm like scott fifer.
Just follow the rules
alright, kids, that's it
that's it, i'm out
Thanks Tony for putting it out there in no uncertain terms.