Category Archives: weight lifting

Let’s talk about setting goals…..

Well here we are, 21 days into February as I write this and I just got home from the gym.  I am sad to be honest, really sad to see that the gym numbers have already dropped off significantly.  For the first few weeks of January it’s tough finding a parking spot up front, you may need to walk a little bit further to get into the gym god forbid.  You may not be able to get on your favorite piece of equipment, you may need to wait a minute to use something.

Here’s the thing though, we all started somewhere.  We all had our first days at the gym and yes maybe it wasn’t in January but we all started somewhere.  I absolutely hate the negativity surrounding New Years Resolutions but we’ve already talked about that.  Tonight I want to talk about something different, one of the main reasons that people do not stick to their resolutions or diets…..Setting goals.  This is the most important concept you need to master in order to be successful in ANYTHING.  Not just losing weight or exercising more.

There is a specific system to use when it comes to setting goals and I am going to break it down here for you tonight.  You may have used this before or you may have used another system that worked well for you in the past.  This is not 100% the absolute golden rule for setting goals.  This is a technique that works and if used will work for you.  That being said there could be another system that works for you as well, I invite you to share some other systems in the comments so that readers may give them a try!

Here we go, let’s get into it! The acronym is S.M.A.R.T. and we are going to take a look at each item individually and really break it down.

 

S-Specific- This is the one where most people go wrong right off the bat.  If you make a goal that is too broad you are increasing your chances of dropping out right from the start.  A goal that is too broad would be something like “I want to lose weight” or “I want to look better” or “I want to start running”.  These goals are not specific enough. You are leaving things up in the air and stacking the odds against yourself!  Instead, when creating a specific goal, give yourself more details.  “I want to go to the gym three times per week” or “I want to lose 6 inches off of my waist”.  These goals are much more specific, they are set in stone, black and white, no grey area and you can measure them. This brings us to the next point! (See what I did there, I think I might be getting the hang of this writing thing!)

M-Measurable, or meaningful- As mentioned above, the latter of the two sets of goals are things that are black and white and you can measure them.  If you look at the first set of goals, “I want to lost weight” or the “I want to look better”, you can not accurately measure those.  “But Ian I can get on the scale and it will show that I am losing weight”.  Ah yes my friend you are correct, but how much weight do you want to lose? What happen when you have a plateau? What happens if you only lose 1 pound that week and you want to lose 5 per week?  “I want to look better”.  Again, how do you accurately measure “looking better” to yourself?  With a selfie pic in the mirror? That sounds wildly acceptable for a measurement in progress….HAH! Make goals that you can clearly measure and are meaningful to you.  Don’t waste your time pulling something out of thin air and thinking it’s going to work.

A-Attainable or Achievable– Now this is where things get a little tricky, but please allow me to explain.  You want to make your goal attainable, you don’t want it to be too far out of reach.  You also do not want to sandbag your goal, it should be something that makes you step out of your comfort zone.  For example, saying you are going to loose 5 pounds a week for the next 10 weeks before your wedding.  Not achievable. “But Ian what about extreme weight loss, what about this person who did it?” blah blah blah.  Yes it has been done, however, IF you make it to that goal, yes IF, it will not last.  You WILL relapse and it will not end well.  A healthy goal would be to loose 2-3 pounds per week.  Another example would be, “I want to run a marathon in 15 weeks”, but you haven’t run a mile in 2 years.  Again yes it is possible, anything is possible, however thats a very far reaching goal.  Bottom line is, you need to have self awareness here and know what is going to push you a little but not too much.  Just know you can always adapt your goal!  They are goals, they are not written in stone, if you don’t achieve it, you learn what you are able to do in the set amount of time.

R- Realistic- Realistic and attainable can be interchangeable depending on how you view it.  Realistic can mean that it’s not too far out of reach. For example you want to qualify for World Championships in your first ever crack at a triathlon. This would be an unrealistic goal based on the fact that you have not yet completed a race.  There are situations and circumstance associated with racing that you cannot recreated in training.  You can always do you best to prepare but there is always a chance something can come up on race day.  It can also mean realistic in your resources.  For example if you have a goal to participate in an Ironman but you work 80 hours a week and have 3 kids and a significant other at home, an ironman may not be a realistic goal at this point in your life.  Taking that much time away from your family or job may lead to other things suffering which could lead to dropping the goal.  Be realistic with your resources such as your time, your equipment, your ability or your knowledge.

T-Time based- Last but not least, your goal needs to be time based.  You need to give yourself a time line of when this goal will be completed by.  There isn’t any other way to put it.  You simply can’t say well I want to drop 50 pounds.  Without that time frame, if there is a week where you stay the same there may be a chance of dropping out.  With a time line, you can track and keep yourself accountable.  The time frame ensures you will get it done and it keeps you honest.  Think of when your boss gives you a project at work or you have a project at school.  With a time line you can sit down, break it into small manageable chunks and get it done.  Some times you may even get it done early!  If that happens it’s ok, you get some time to plan your next goal and reconsider either your time frame or how challenging you make your goal.

One last thought to keep you motivated or on track is consider a reverse bet.  If you have a friend or a few friends who are all working on goals, create a reverse bet with them to hold each other accountable.  A reverse bet is simple, you have your goals and your friend has theirs.  You set the time line and then you set the consequences if you do not achieve said goal.  The consequences should be something that would absolutely make you cringe.  This is a great way to hold each other accountable, get friends and family involved and stay on track.

If you set a goal for New Years and you have dropped off, DON’T wait until next year to make a S.M.A.R.T. goal.  Make your S.M.A.R.T. goal tomorrow.  The best time to start was yesterday and the second best time to start is now.

If you have a technique for setting goals that has been successful for you please share it below in the comments section! If you need any further help or just want to bounce some ideas off of someone please use my social links below and hit me up in the DM’s.  I really love hearing from you guys!

 

All for now.

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

 

I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Why Motivation Sucks, by Kyle of KJ Healthy Way

Got your attention, didn’t I? Let me start by saying motivation doesn’t suck. I am a big believer in motivation and its power to galvanize action. But motivation is only just that, a spark. It is a jumpstart to your day or pick-me-up when you need to push through. It will not carry you through the finish line all on its own. The title really should have been “Why Motivation is an excellent tool for starting you on your journey towards your goals or helping you sustain your efforts while pursuing them but should not be as the sole instrument to achieve success,” but, then I didn’t.
Motivation is kind of like a drug; you get that first hit and BAM, you’re flying high. Eventually, the high of the motivation wears off and you’re left with that need for more. Take another hit, you’re flying again. This time though, you don’t have that same amount of intensity you had the first time. But you get your fix. You repeat this process until you just don’t get that same rush, that same crazed intensity you had the first time. Eventually, whatever you’ve been using for motivation just doesn’t work anymore and you look for another form of motivation to get you that same “high” you had the first time.

Here’s an example: I watch the Rocky IV training scene where Rocky is training in the Russian wilderness and Ivan Drago is in the Russian lab training with new age equipment (one of the best Rocky training montages in my opinion). I get motivated to start training and get in shape. The next morning, I’m up before the sun and out the door running, you know, like Rocky would. I feel great and I have a fire in my belly to keep pushing until I look like Rocky (in Rocky IV, not the original Rocky). I am able to sustain this intensity until midway through the month, when my motivation starts to wane. I’m not quite looking like Rocky yet and I’m tired and sore and don’t really feel like getting up early and running anymore. Watching Rocky training montages isn’t doing it for me and I’m getting sick of listening to “Eye of the Tiger” on repeat. I abandon my “training” and, most importantly, wonder where my motivation went.
Maybe not an applicable example for everyone but definitely something you can relate to. Everyone needs motivation to get you started or to help get you out of a slump with your training. But motivation will fade and you need something else to, not only sustain your efforts, but to help build a lifestyle around your goals. How can you do that, you ask?
You need to build Systems into your life that allows you to create a sustainable lifestyle and not a transient state of excitement.

A System is not a robot or software that does stuff for you (although, if you can make this happen, contact me). The best way to describe a System you probably already use is where you put your car keys. When you walk in the door after a day of work, you put your car keys in the same spot; on the counter, in a dish by the door, a hook on the wall. You’ve developed a System for placing your keys in a convenient spot so you can effortless grab them as you’re heading out the door. It is automatic and you don’t even think about it anymore. It is a System that you’ve built for your morning routine.

So how do you build Systems into your daily routine so you make proper nutrition and exercise automatic? I’m glad you asked.

Systems for Exercise:

  • Pack a gym bag the night before and place it by the front door or in your car
  • Schedule your workouts on a calendar or your phone calendar or Google calendar (so many calendars)
  • Hire a personal trainer or prepay for a month’s worth of sessions
  • Put your alarm clock or phone alarm across the room so you have to get up to turn it off
  • Wake up 1 hour earlier…do it
  • Buy some simple workout equipment like resistance bands and a yoga mat that you can take anywhere
  • Purchase a workout program or course

Systems for Nutrition:

  • Meal Prep…you know you saw this one coming
  • Pack food like fresh or dried fruit, nuts and seeds, protein powder, tuna pouches at work and in car so you always have something with you
  • Buy food containers so you can take your prepared food and snacks with you
  • 90-10 Rule – eat clean 90% of the time and the other 10% you can eat what you’ve been craving
  • Remove temptation from your house by removing junk food
  • Plan Meals and shop for those meals
  • Learn 1 healthy meal or recipe per week and put it in rotation

Systems can be used for anything: sleep, work, chores, etc. But, if you noticed when I was listing the Systems above, many of them involve some sort of monetary involvement. This is absolutely by design. By investing in something related to health and fitness, YOUR health and fitness, you are making an investment in yourself. This is a crucial step toward any goal. Additionally, you’re more likely to use or do something you paid for rather than if it is just given to you. There’s something about paying for an item or service that, psychologically, makes you appreciate it a bit more. You’re also more likely to “get your money’s worth” as well.
In summary, Motivation does not suck. Motivation is awesome and necessary. But it not the end-all and be-all to success. Inevitably, it will not always there. Instead, use Motivation to start building Systems into your daily routines. This will ensure you are not always relying on Motivation to push you forward and you will develop a consistent lifestyle.

If you have any questions, comments, or want some more help developing systems, feel free to leave a comment below.
Thank you.

 

kyle

Kyle of KJ Healthy Way

Focus On the Good

Since Jersey State Triathlon things have been fairly normal as they go.  I have been on my bike, I have been running, I have been swimming.  Training, hanging, and enjoying my summer, honestly I wouldn’t have it any other way.  This summer has been absolutely amazing for so many reasons, I have met some great people who are a part of my life now, I have strengthened some relationships with people I knew and I have reached some goals already as far as racing goes.

When I started this blog, I started it to detail my story in becoming an Ironman.  I try to keep most of my personal life, personal and just keep it to racing.  However this has become my outlet and at times I must use it for just that.  This week I got news that I had lost three people in my life in the course of about four days.  Two of which lost a hard fought battle with cancer and one of which lost their battle with depression.  It is always hard to hear of these things but three in the matter of time that passed rocked my world.

Unfortunately this is not the first time my world has been rocked by the loss of a young life to suicide.  Before I started my journey to Ironman, I lost a great friend to the same thing.  When I learned of this, I began to relive this nightmare all over again.  I felt all of the same emotions, sickness and anxiety that I felt only a few short years ago.  It was hard, it put me down and I didn’t even want to come out of my room let alone my house on Monday.  There are a lot of things I carry with me from day to day from the first time I was ever impacted by this disease.  I never thought sitting in high school health classes that my life would be affected by this disease, let alone twice.

Through all of this I have been told something that I have heard a million times and something that I did not really want to hear at this moment…. “Focus on the good.” It seemed like everything was right on track and then it spun off so fast.  I had a job lined up, I had everything going right and them boom, It felt like I ran into a wall.  There were complications with the job and that sent me into a tailspin.  I have goals that I want to accomplish and a time line that I need to follow in order to reach those goals.  Knowing that I could possibly not have a full time job and having to cover bills makes me anxious about getting a new bike in order to reach my ultimate dream of becoming an Ironman among so many other things.

Yet I had so many people telling me to focus on the good.  Well this morning I decided to do just that, focus on the good and forget about the rest.  I have a great time at my part time job right now, I am helping people and inspiring people to better their lives, I am having an amazing summer, the list goes on.  Yes I hit some road bumps but I cannot let them derail the things that I am focused on.  I truly believe that I am being tested in order to make the victories taste even sweeter.  I am also making new goals.  In order to reach my goal I have started a Go Fund Me account in order to help offset some of the cost for my bike.  This is a dream that I have shared with so many people and I know that it is something that I cannot do alone.  I ask that if you read this and feel compelled to help please help in anyway that you can, whether it be a donation or just sharing my story for other people to learn about it.  I know I have the support of so many people and I can’t thank you all enough, you have been simply amazing and any little thing that you can do to help me will be so greatly appreciated.

Marathon training has started here, looking at races for next year and so many other plans.  I can’t thank everyone enough for their support a long this journey.  The messages and praise I receive daily are so rewarding and I thank you all so much.  I wish that I could meet every person who has touched my life and give them a hug, I like hugs.

Until the next time, thank you for everything that all of you do and please keep it up, I appreciate it more than you could ever imagine.

All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

I do not post on here on a daily basis but feel free to catch me on other social media!

“March” Your Way Out Of Here

A beautiful Saturday, I ran outside, in shorts at that.  Got sweaty and was almost hot…Almost. Today I wake up and the ground is covered in snow.  I am curse that stupid groundhog today, Old Man Winter and everyone else I can for teasing me like this.  I have been riding my trainer all winter, I can ride it for a bit longer, but it is really not nice to tease me like that!

This off season has not been particularly as good as last years.  Last year I was just getting started, everything I tried went well and I was loving the results.  Sure if you go back through the posts, you’ll find something that threw me off, the struggles of going paleo at first and the wonders of plateauing during weight loss.  Overall though, things went very well last year and I am pleased with the results.

This year, its been, well different.  Through student teaching, injury and over training, lets just say I need some warm weather.  Student teaching was rough on my training schedule to say the least.  After the Atlantic City race, training took a back seat to everything else that was going on.  After graduation it was GO time!  I was back in the weight room, I was swimming, I was biking, I was running.  If it was a form of exercise, I was participating in it.  Not so fast killer….Next thing you know the injuries started popping up.  I was told to ease back in and I didn’t.  I got hurt and I was told to take it easy……I didn’t.  I paid, and I paid big time.   I had to take some serious time off, I had to get my back healthy and then I needed to reevaluate my training and what I was doing.  My first tri isn’t until June….I needed to dial things back and so I did.  The other thing I did was something I hate doing, but knew I had to….I began to seek the advice of a coach.  Eduardo from Bodyfeed was awesome in helping me get back on my feet.  He wrote personalized training plans for me based on my goals and he checked in with me on a daily basis.  Better yet, it was FREE!!!  He is willing to do the same for anyone else as well, he is confident that if you are not satisfied you can leave at any time but you can get up to 3 months of training for free.

Once back on my feet, I began to feel healthy, happy and back to where I needed to be.  Not all of my training has gone exactly as planned but I am feeling good about it.  There have been days I have not wanted to do my workout for that day, there have been days where I have skipped but there is still no doubt in my mind that this is something I love! One of the groups that has helped my push through these times and led to some great workouts is Further Faster Forever.  It is a group on Instagram and twitter that is centered around triathlon and pushing/ supporting each other through training.  You can join on their site and check out all of the positive and motivating pictures on Instagram!

On Saturday post run I was leaving the club and someone at the desk asked me what I was doing.  It was a Saturday on St Patty’s weekend so I guess they were expecting something along the lines of going out to blackout and not remember the night before and spend my Sunday laying around nursing a hangover.  I simply responded with well I am not really sure yet.  Their next response was the one that caught me slightly off guard though “Can’t you just go out and do something fun for once?”  I didn’t think I was a lame person.  I like to go out and have fun with my friends, I do enjoy going to the bar now and again and I think if you surveyed my friends they would say I can be a pretty fun guy.  I just thought that it was strange that because I wasn’t going out to the bar they felt as though I wasn’t doing anything “fun” Maybe I am lame and not fun anymore because I don’t go to the bar every weekend and I am ok with that.

Sunday meant brick day for me, another reason I did not go to the bar Saturday.  Something tells me riding 15 miles on the bike followed immediately by a 5K would be anything less than splendid while nursing a hangover.  So I got home in the afternoon after AM water workout and running some errands.  I fired up the trainer and threw on some Walking Dead.  After my 10 min warmup I got into the groove and just started pedaling.  I did not want to shift gears or do 1 min in this gear and 1 min in that because I have a different day set up for intervals.  I spent this time trying to get used to being in the areo position and focus on my pedal stroke and play with my nutrition a bit.  I hit my 15 miles and it was immediately off, throw on my Newton Running Motion and grab my Powerbar gel.  I had my Garmin set to multisport mode so all I had to do was hit lap and it went right into the run mode.  The watch was covered just enough for me to see the distance, I wanted everything else to be off of feel for this run.  I did my 5K and when I hit the distance, I had no idea how long I have been going for.  I hit stop on the Garmin and excitedly pulled my sleeve up to see the time.  25:45!!  For those of you keeping tabs, this was maybe 1:30 off my PR time at most.  I was ecstatic!  It was a great way to finish out my weekend and I got to run outside to boot!  I was using Osmo hydration while on the bike and when I jumped off to go run I had a gel with me.  As I started running I had a stomach ache but nothing serious and after I took my gel it came back a bit.  Obviously it didn’t effect me too much since I had a great run but I am not sure what it would do on a longer run.  That’s why you practice your nutrition in training!

Today things are light, I have a swim, probably in my wetsuit since I like to do that once a week and some strength intervals.  Sticking to my plan and keeping things simple.  Light days are meant to be light so the hard days can be hard.  Hope everyone is enjoying their training thus far, can’t wait for race season coming up!  I really appreciate all the support and look forward to hearing about your training and racing.

All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

I do not post on here on a daily basis but you can follow my training and other posts here!

Changes…

Changes…everyone goes through them. Sometimes they are wonderful, sometimes they are hard, sometimes they completely turn your life around. The one thing that all changes have in common is that they are inevitable. They will always be there and they will always come at some point or another. Some people experience changes that challenge their faith, some that challenge a relationship. Whatever your change is, it is your fight to fight, you can not compare it to someone else. Everyone has their own battle and it is YOUR battle, don’t compare it to something that someone else is going through.

Change can come at any point and time, it can show up with absolutely no warning and it can be triggered by just about anything. It can feel like your world is crashing down around you, it can feel like there is a giant rain cloud over your head and it just won’t budge! Usually we can’t pin point when this change starts or what sparked it, the events, the people or what have you (like I said, usually) but some times we can.  For me, at the beginning, it felt like I was in a hamster wheel.  I was going and going and going, but wasn’t getting anywhere.  At times I wish I could go back now and just tell the old me, hey keep going, there is a light!  The plateaus, the off weeks, injuries, hard days all consume your head.  Some times it seems like when you’re working so hard towards something, the only thing you can focus on is the bad.  Even if the good far out weighs the bad.

Today I look back at that person who I used to be, before the journey, before the fight, before the change and there are things that I miss.  Some parts of the fight have left me shy, timid or scared in certain situations, new situations.  It takes me time to warm-up in new situations now, whereas before I was always “warm.” I miss that person who could walk in to a room of strangers and be the center of attention thats for sure.  In the today, I would much rather hang on the outside and just watch.  Is it necessarily a bad thing? No, it is just a changes that is the result of the actions of others.  You live and you learn I guess.  I forget birthdays from time to time, I don’t necessarily love going to a packed bar on a saturday night and I would much rather eat pizza and drink a beer with some friends.  Some may think I have become a bad friend or a different friend and I don’t necessarily argue that point.

There are other times where I look at the new person in the mirror and I smile.  When you stand there and look at that person, it is like a canvas.  This canvas has been painted with a beautiful picture.  Just as an artist goes through blood, sweat and tears in order to make the most beautiful work they can, you too make sacrifice in order to have something beautiful as a result.  So when I look at my canvas, my painting in the mirror, I just can’t help but smile.  Whether it be in a new shirt, in a race picture, or just when I am brushing my teeth…I look as an artist admiring their own work.  As the artist, I must say although the work is not complete, I like the way it is coming along.

The only thing better than admiring your own work is when someone else sees it and they can admire it with you.  Most recently this happened to me while at work one morning.  I was in between clients and there was a woman who always has her daughters there.  I have become friendly with her because it feels like she is there nearly as much as I am.  So as I pulled my lunch container out (it is a 6 Pack Bag so EVERYONE comments on it) she said “you know I have been meaning to tell you, you are awesome.  I think that what you have done is awesome, your determination is admirable and you look absolutely amazing.  I have be wanting to tell you this but you are always busy when I am here!”  Man if that doesn’t make you feel good, I don’t know what will.  It feels great when you can look on and admire you own work, or see your results from change.  When someone else can see your work and admire it with you it is a great feeling.

From time to time it feels like this change is causing you so much pain or so much hardship.  It can seem super frustrating or like things are going to break.  Then there are times where change is beautiful.  All change can be helpful and wonderful, it depends on how you want to look at it.  It can be hard to see positives at times, believe me I know.  Surrounding yourself with people who build you up will help aid in changes and things like this, weeding out the bad ones will make it even easier.

As for my training there have been some changes there as well.  I have dialed things back significantly in order to get myself healthy again.  I dropped my yardage in the pool, dropped my running back and completely cut out lifting.  I realized that I wanted too many changes at once and my body was not ready.  Realizing when you are trying to force things is huge and everyone needs to do it.  I am just a few days over a month away from this season first race and it is hard to believe that things are right around the corner.  I am excited for whats to come and I thank you all for your support!

As for today, there is more snow on the ground, things are canceled and schools are closed, I am so far over winter and ready for this season to get on some CHANGE!! It is a rest day for me here and I plan to take full advantage of that!  Thanks for reading and I’ll catch you next time!

All for now.
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

I Do not post on here on a daily basis but you can follow my trainer and other posts here!

Snow, Snow and more freakin SNOW

Take your time, breathe, slow down, it will come when it is time…Ever heard any of this before?  Has it come at a time where you have wanted to hear anything but that?  Some times things happen in order to make you stop and take your time because if you are anything like me, when you want something, you want it NOW.

Winter…..It’s not my favorite time of year, I hate being cold, I hate the snow and most of all I HATE training indoors.  If I could pick up and move somewhere to train outside year round, I would be there in a second.  That being said, I have always made due during the winter months.  I suck it up and jump on a spin bike or treddy until we get a decent day and I can go outside.  It has never been ideal but never has it been like this!  This winter has just been an absolute mess!

               There is a pool under there somewhere…..

That being said, my off season has been just about as messy as this wonderful winter weather.  After the race I kept up my training as if I were going to another race in a few weeks.  That did not fair well for me, my body did not like it and I had to shut things down for about two weeks around Christmas because my IT band was crazy inflamed.  From their things just began to snowball (pun intended) into more injuries.  I have had a locked sacrum, threw out my back, knots, tightness, pain…just about everything you could possibly think of.  None of it has been serious but it is just ANNOYING.   While I was talking with a good friend and my personal athletic trainer last night, he warned me that my body could STILL be getting used to everything that has happened over the past year.   Although that is not what I wanted to hear, the more I thought about it, the more I knew he was probably right.  I practically lost an entire person that I was carrying around and I trained hard for a triathlon.  My body is probably in something just short of shock.  My joints and muscles and everything else are screaming back “WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! ARE YOU INSANE?!”  As much as I want to jump right in and do an Ironman tomorrow, I know now more than ever that I really need to take my time.

Unfortunately I have learned the hard way that it is very important to train you body and to train your WHOLE body, not just the parts you want to change.  One of the areas that I have neglected the most was my core.  I never dedicated days to working my core and I am paying for it now.  It is called your core for a reason, it holds everything up and you need to take care of it, much more than I have!  I felt myself getting stronger in the pool and on the bike, meanwhile I did not realize I was destroying myself by not following the basics.  Learn from me, train your core and don’t neglect it, you use it way more than you think when swimming, biking and running.

As of now I am nursing myself back to good health, just trying to take it easy, do some light training and keep myself in shape before I really start ramping things up.  Our Youth Tri Club has started and I am coaching the swim sessions which I am super pumped about and having a blast.  Along with the youth I will be helping with the adults, especially when spring arrives(is it ever coming back?) and we begin training in open water.

Just to follow up from last post, I have not shared this page with the adults I have been helping.  For one I am unsure on how to bring it up and so I have just avoided it all together.  On top of that, I have not had a session with them for a few weeks now due to this horrible weather around here.  If anyone has an recommendations on how to do this please feel free to contact me or post a comment here!

All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

I don’t post on here on a daily basis but I do on other social media!

It’s Been too long….

Where have the days gone? It is October 1st.  My first race is here and gone. School, work, lessons, planning, training…everything is in full swing and it doesn’t seem to have a brake pedal anywhere to be found. 

Things have been interesting since post race weekend here.  As I said, the school year is in full swing and so balancing teaching and training has been hard.  I wanted to do one more race for this season before I clean and rack the bike but I don’t think that is in the cards.  Balancing time to train in with work and school is tough.  I know this is a taste of things to come but at the same time it will be different.  Trying to find that balance shall be a challenge though.

After the success of the first race, I cannot wait to get to the next and the next and the next.  The entire weekend was absolutely amazing and the support from everyone made it even better.  People have been asking what my goal distance is and where I want to be.  Ultimately I would like to complete a half Ironman, preferably Miami.  Unfortunately there are too many unknowns for me at this point in my life to make a commitment to something that big.  First the cost…My bike is too small and needs work, or I need to get a new one.  It is $300 to register for the race…travel expenses etc.  I also have no idea where I will end up after graduation.  This is ok with me though because I do not want to take things too fast.  I want to take my time and ensure I am prepared and ready for what I am going to do.  I do not want to take too many steps or too big of a step. Next season I step up to an international and then 2015 is a half!

I know I have said it 1,000 times but I can’t thank you all enough for the support I have received on this journey.  Both from long time friends and people who I have never met in my life.  It is incredible and I thank you.  I was talking with a friend a few weekends ago and he said “You know man you are just out there doing your thing.  You didn’t need a pitty party, you didn’t need any crazy products, you put in the hard work and you did it up man.  Keep going!” My man Heem! Such a stand up guy.

As for Atlantic City….call me selfish but I can’t help but be honest and say that I was scanning the entire bike and run course, transition and finish chute for one person.  Not to take ANYTHING away from the incredible people who were there in any way shape or form.  They were incredible throughout the entire race and I’ll never be able to thank them enough.  I was looking for one person in particular though…who never did show….guess something came up, or they just decided not to for personal reasons.  It sucks but hey I can’t do anything about it.

I did have a 5k race last weekend but I will do an entire post on that because it was for a special cause and I have a good bit to say about it.  As for now, it is just swimming, biking, and running.  I can’t wait to get my life back in December when this nonsense is finally over!!  I feel like I just wrote a bunch of fluff but didn’t really say much in this post.  Bottom line is I am having difficult balancing time, can’t keep my head straight and I just want to do another race so bad!  Other than that, my life is boring right now.

I am going to sign off and try and get it together.  Thanks for reading

All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

ps. There has been a rule in place for the blog and people ask me why.  If you know me in person, you may not ask questions about any of the posts.  I have no idea who reads this, it does not tell me who the views are from and unless you drop something in the comments, I have no idea that you were ever here.  I appreciate all of the views and love the support, it means the world…There is something to be said about not knowing though.  If I knew who all of my readers were, I would tailor posts dependent upon who was reading them.  I do not want to do this…I want everything to be there out in the open so that people can see, I am just a real, average guy who is doing this.  There will be hardships on the way, however if you keep your eyes on the prize, you will grasp what you are reaching for.  If you have asked me a question already and I answered you, no worries, it probably wasn’t something that was too big of a deal…just FYI 🙂

Tomorrow is my birthday!

August 12th….it is always bittersweet when this day comes around.  It is sweet because it is my birthday, obviously that is exciting as always!  However it always indicates that the end of summer is near.  I am excited for the end of this summer for so many reasons.  I start student teaching in the fall and it means I am in the last stage of college.  It is the final stage, something I have been waiting for, for the longest time.  I know I still have a long road of job hunting after I graduate but it is one step closer to teaching.  The other reason I am excited is because my race is in September as you already may know.  It is what I have been working my tail off for since September of last year and I will finally be put to the test!

 This past week was another one which wasn’t too exciting.  I worked and I trained.  No sailing this week because I took over at my buddies house to babysit his three dogs and they left early so I didn’t want to leave them for that long.  I have continued to lift two days a week and I can definitely feel myself getting stronger in the weight room.  For whatever reason when it came to to my bike and run this week though it was very difficult to get myself going.  I think taking so much time off last week definitely hurt me.  I also did not swim this week, which I don’t like but I will be back in the pool this week, I can promise you that.

My buddy who I am house sitting for was a personal trainer and is still into working out and staying fit.  One morning when I woke up I found an omron machine in the bathroom.  I decided to fire it up and plug in my info and see what it had to say.  I could see the little lines blinking across the bottom and the anticipation was building.  When the numbers popped up I had to rub my eyes and look at it again.  It told me I had 18% body fat.  ARE YOU KIDDING ME 18%!!  I didn’t have one of these machines when I first started so I cannot give you an exact number for where I was, but it had to be somewhere between 25-30%.  I couldn’t believe it…I was beside myself. 

Last week I was talking with a guy Brandon who I work with at my health club.  I used to see Brandon when he would come in to swim when I first started working there and I was super inspired.  I knew he was a triathlete and I knew that, that’s what I wanted to become.  He has definitely been an inspiration throughout this whole thing and he has helped me more than I could ever imagine.  When I was talking to him, I told him that I wanted to get better and faster on my bike.  I am averaging about 15 mph on every ride when I go out but I want to be faster.  I also can feel how I am still a little hesitant when it comes to descending hills.  This is obviously something I need to work on because there are so many hills where I ride.  After talking awhile he said “it will come with time man, don’t worry about it!”  This is so true….I constantly need to remind myself that I have just entered into this new world of triathlons.  I did not run or ride before I started.  I am basically starting from square one and he is right, it will come with time and practice. 

Today I woke up and grabbed some coffee before I went to church.  I knew after church that I needed to do a brick workout.  I was just delaying the inevitable.  I grabbed my water bottles, my Powerbar gel and I was off.  I started my ride and it was hot.  Not nearly as hot as a few rides I have done, but the sun was definitely beating down.  As I was descending one of the first big hills I went to change gears and my chain totally locked up.  I couldn’t pedal and I immediately started freaking out on the inside.  I knew I just had to make it to the bottom of the hill.  When I got there I jumped off and started fooling around with the chain.  For whatever reason it had popped off.  As I said before I am totally new to this and I had to idea what to do.  I was over 6 miles from my car and I have no idea how far I was from home.  I wanted to just call it quits, call my friend to come get me who lives right in the town of Oxford and go home.  I finally figured it out and jumped back on the bike.  I rode some more and as I was descending another hill the same thing happened.  Luckily this time it was easy to fix because I knew what to do.  I popped the chain back on and finished my ride.  It was just over 17 miles.

Strava report from my ride.
When I got back to my car, I popped the wheel off and switched my shoes and started off for my run.  I headed over to the park across from where I parked my car and my legs felt like jello.  For my first mile it felt like I wasn’t even moving.  I got through two miles in around 18 minutes and I knew I had to finish….I had to hit my 5K just for myself.  I was already over an hour into my workout and my legs were dead. In this moment I wanted to quit so bad.  As I was running I thought of a picture that I posted on my instagram last week and it pushed me to keep going.  I finished my 5K and although it wasn’t my fastest time, I some how managed to go 8 min on my last mile!
Strava from my run with my first negative split!
As I said multiple times in this post, I am entering into an entirely new world here.  I am someone who wants things instantaneously.  I see something and I want it right then and there.  I have become better about this on this journey however.  If you go back to previous posts or check out my twitter(ForYourself15) You will see how I have gotten faster since I started running at the end of last year.  I know that I am getting better and better with each training sessions.  I can see my body changing and adapting to everything I have been doing and I am so happy with how far I have come.  I would have never thought when I started that I would be where I am today.  2-3 years ago….HA! I would have never even dreamed of doing what I am doing right now.  Still is it selfish of me to want more, to want to be faster?  No I don’t think so….I have never wanted something quite as bad as this and I can promise you that I will stop at nothing until I get there.
I am not sure how you found this blog but I can tell you that I have found some amazing people through instagram who have been incredibly inspiring.  If you are on there or not on there, you should check it out and find me if you want to put a face with the blogger (doing_it_for_yourself).  People post their story and their progress and it is awesome, I love it!  It is insane how your body responds to the pressure you put on it!  
This week is a busy week coming up, yes tomorrow is my birthday but to me it will just be another day.  I am going to train, I want to swim and honestly I wouldn’t have it any other way.  I had a great dinner with family tonight and I am so thankful for them. They have been absolutely amazing through this journey and I would be truly lost without them.  Wishing you all a wonderful week and I hope you enjoy what is left of your summer!
All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

It’s a New Day…Embrace it and be happy

Good morning all, or evening, or afternoon…whatever it is to you. As I sit her in the cool breeze and soft morning sun, I decided to enjoy my little outlet before things get nuts. 

This weekend was an eventful one that’s for sure! I went on a trip to the beach with my buddy to see our friend who is living down there for the summer. I was pumped to see him and to get away for the weekend. Last Friday it seemed like everything that could go wrong did. I got up and made my breakfast and was out the door by 5:00 on Friday morning. Walking down the driveway I dropped my oatmeal and just knew it was going to be ugly from there on out. I got to work and the drain cover had some how been knocked off one of the drains in the pool. This chick was all up in my face asking me questions and talking to me until my ears were ringing and I hadn’t even had a cup of coffee yet. Luckily I some how made it through the rest of the shift and got out of there alive. 
I headed home and had one of my clients at the house and then it was finally over! I packed up my stuff, made sure I had everything for my bike and headed out. My buddy is one of the few who understands the burning passion I now have for this triathlon and he was kind enough to squeeze my bike into his car. He didn’t have to do this and I am grateful that he did.  I was super excited to ride on some flatter ground. 
When we got down there Friday it was go time and we went out and had a great time. No I didn’t stick to my diet and no I didn’t only have one drink…come on did you read about that day?! Plus there is no such thing as only one orange crush!! I was going to ride Saturday but we went on this tour of the town trying to find breakfast so I decided to just go chill on the beach for awhile. Saturday we went to jam which was pretty sick and the music was good. When we were standing at jam we jumped up on the ledge and claimed some prime real estate to listen to music and people watch. As I was standing there I thought you know it’s funny, I probably wouldn’t have done this last summer. I wouldn’t want everyone to be able to see me like that.  I am still not 100% comfortable in my own skin but I am getting there. I can still see the cowardly lion every now and again, but this summer is different though and I’m getting there! 
Sunday I woke up and I HAD to ride my bike. I wasn’t leaving the beach until I did. We went and got breakfast much easier this time. I came back and it was windy and I knew I was going to have to cross a bridge and I wasn’t excited. Just as I was gearing up I said something about the bridge, a guy Coop said “oh yeah didn’t you hear about the lady who was run off a bridge like two weeks ago…?” Seriously, not what I needed to hear. I embarked on my journey however and it was a tough first leg out. The wind was blowing directly into my face and it made it really tough. I got to the bridge at the inlet and there was an older guy in front of me just out for a little joy ride. He took his sweet time getting over the bridge and in the midst of that sweet time we got passed by two, not one but TWO rv’s…seriously?! Nonetheless I made it to Bethany and turned around to start heading back. My ride ended up totaling 21 miles and I did it in 1:11…I was stoked. 

After that we just hung around for a bit longer. Everyone at the house was fighting off their hangover but me I felt great! 6:00pm rolled around and we headed out. 
I got back to my buddies house and we were talking with his mom and she asked when my race was. I told her and she said ok I’ll make sure I have off. I said its all the way in Atlantic city, you don’t have to do that! It was an argument…they will be there and I am ecstatic. I wish I could have every single person who is or was important in some way there to give me a high five. I had no idea that they wanted to come and I’m overwhelmed! When I got back to my house, my neighbors from across the street were here. They told me that they were telling their neighbor at the beach about what I am up to. They told me he said he was proud of me for what I was doing. I only met this guy a handful of times but for him to say that is absolutely astonishing.  The race is getting really close and I’m getting nervous and excited all at the same time. 
I’ve been trying to just live everyday the the fullest and not look back on what happened yesterday. Everyday is a new day with new challenges and I don’t even have time to look back on the past. Happy Monday everyone! Have a wonderful week. 
All for now
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself