Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!

I am celebrating today. It's interesting: I don't feel 44 years old. I feel a lot younger, but maybe that is due to workouts. I hope so.

Training has been moving along. I'll post an update later today or tomorrow. For now, I'm simply savoring the moment.

May all beings be safe, healthy, happy, prosperous, and at peace.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Returning to Lifting Weights

After about 2 years off from lifting weights regularly, I resumed that part of my workout routine today. To make a long story palatably brief, I took a break from weight lifting when I lost my personal trainer, Matt, due to circumstances beyond my control. Even though there was nothing I could do about it--and I still think he got lousy treatment from the athletic club where I used to train--I got into a funk where I lost a lot of enthusiasm for strength training and building muscle. It's funny how our emotions can affect our workouts; I have found it is good to honor them and not ignore them. For me, workouts have to balance the four basic aspects of our being: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.

Anyway, it was great to get back to it today. My friend Mark joined me at my new gym and we had a great time pumping the iron. Since it was my first time back, I took it fairly and avoided the testosterone-fueled temptation to push myself really hard with a lot more weight than I ought to use on my first day of using weights again. Also, I was careful to stretch after almost every group of 3 sets for each exercise. I stretched a lot at the end of the workout, too; I don't plan to be immobilized tomorrow!

Here's the recap of the workout:
  • 44 minutes of roadwork (it's getting cold out there!)
  • 3 x 8 on leg press
  • 3 x 10 upright row
  • 3 x 8 lat pulldowns
  • 3 x 8 bicep curls with dumbbells
  • 3 x 8 tricep extensions

I know it's an easy workout, but I have learned (the hard way) to ease back into a particular type of training after an extended break from it. I'll be increasing the number of exercises and the weights I use soon.

I didn't do any boxing-specific training today. I am close to figuring out how I want to work weight training into my fitness routine. I'll probably alternate one day of boxing training with a day of weight lifting. I'm still adjusting to the new gym and getting there in time to work out properly. I know it has been a few months already, but there have been a lot of things demanding my attention recently, so the transition has not gone quite as smoothly as I originally had hoped. That's alright. I tend to be very persistent and on the attack in boxing, and that is how I approach life generally. I'll keep at the scheduling issues until I get it where I want it to be.

Mark seemed to enjoy himself. I hope he'll join my new gym; it would be great to have him here. I am moving on from what was becoming an increasingly dysfunctional situation at my old club. There was no problem with any of our boxers and certainly not with our coach, but the board of directors, and particularly the president, of our club made a lot of choices that really stink. I need to put that part of my life behind me while I still have mostly pleasant memories of my 17 years there.

Hey, weight lifting: it's great to be back! :-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Back in Action

After an unexpected break in training, I returned to the gym yesterday. My hiatus from training was caused by two computers breaking down over 3 weeks, which happened right at the time that work got really busy and I was scrambling just to try to keep up with the increased workload. Nevertheless, things seem to be getting more normal now, and I'm really grateful for that.

To be honest, Sunday's workout was not as good as it might have been, but it was something, and it was the beginning of my return to my regular routine. Here's the recap of Sunday's training:
  • 41 minutes of roadwork,
  • 2 rounds of shadowboxing,
  • 2 rounds on the heavy bag, and
  • 1 round on the double-end bag.

I cut my workout short because Sunday was a very busy day with a lot of other things planned. In addition to training, I had planned to do my laundry, to help my dad fix his computer, and to watch the Chicago Bears vs. Oakland Raiders football game. Well, I did make some improvements on my dad's computer and I got my laundry done, but I missed the Bears game. Oh well, there are still six weeks of regular play in the NFL left in this season.

It felt great to be back in the gym doing my first boxing workout in over a week and a half. It was good to see the guys, work up a sweat, and see that I hadn't lost too much of my speed and timing, as I had worried I might have. Even though the training was a bit rushed, I'm glad I did it. Getting back to it after a period of being away, the most difficult battle was against inertia. It was really tempting to take Sunday off too, and just chill out at home. However, once I started my workout -- and even more so after I finished it -- I felt great. It's good to be back.