My partner workouts…






Ok, they look nothing like this. πŸ™‚

January 10, 2017 Posted by | workouts | | Leave a comment

You won’t keep that New Year’s Resolution to workout unless…

I saw this on a friend’s wall and it made me laugh:


And yes, many of my sports and fitness minded friends have laughed about seeing the gym crowded early in the year only to become empty later.

Jan1st Gym

There is some research that talks about this. It appears that some of us are programmed to like working out and others are not.

And, let’s face it: all of us HAVE to do stuff we don’t want to do.

So, what about those who don’t have the desire to exercise built into their nature?

One approach that works for some is to make exercise a social thing. One can do this with a spouse or good friend (some have used me for this purpose) and one can either join an exercise class or develop a “community feeling” for a set workout period. I see many in the Riverplex who do this, even with me (e. g. someone noticed that I had a hair cut and a shave).

It is also my personal opinion that one should find an activity that they either enjoy or at least are more tolerant of.
I am lucky in there is a lot that I like to do (though I am not good at it) but even I need people; that is probably why I do more of those 5K races than I should.

If someone knows that they are goal oriented, one can make it a goal to, say, finish the local major race (e. g. the Steamboat 4 mile in Peoria) and join a group that is designed to get people to do that (like, say, the Illinois Valley Striders Building Steam program).

All of the well-intended resolutions in the world have a low probability of success if there is no concession made to a person’s nature.

I note that several of my friends who are very, very fit (finished marathons or beyond, lead several exercise classes, etc.) workout mostly in groups or with a friend.

This is why I am not a big fan of home exercise equipment. It can help…those who are genetically programed to do it anyway. And I do use our home treadmill when I am pressed for time OR when it is snowy/icy outside. But I am one of those who will “do it anyway.”

December 28, 2015 Posted by | workouts, yoga | , , | Leave a comment

Flu shot and ..

Yes, I got my flu shot. My left arm aches.

Workout (9 am): weights then 3 miles of running, 10 minutes of cycling.

Weights: 5 sets of 10 pull ups (strong), rotator cuff
bench press: 10 x 135, 3 x 185 (didn’t push for another rep), 7 x 170, then 10 x 135 incline (very easy)
military presses: 3 sets of 10 x 40 standing.
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 60 each arm, 10 x 110 machine.

Run: 11:06 mile on the treadmill, followed by 2 miles (16 laps of lane 2) in 17:43 (8:48, 8:45), 10 minutes on the bike.

One retired engineering professor even timed my laps and wondered if I was walking or running (it looks similar).

While I was going, a (staff? faculty?) 30-40 something year old woman was on her phone, talking and not really doing anything. She was on it when I was on the treadmill and still on it when I got off of my bike. I wonder if she bragged about being “in the gym” for X minutes.

Being in the gym doesn’t mean that much (in terms of exercise anyway) unless you are, well, actually working out while you are there.

October 8, 2015 Posted by | running, weight training, workouts | | Leave a comment

Do I want to work out today?


Our guys are just as addicted to the brand (Lululemon) as we are (they’re just less interested in wearing it, more interested in how our ass looks in the Wonder Under pant). Hey, look all you want guys,


(click the small photo to see at the original site)

I suppose that I’ll workout after all. πŸ™‚ (ok, I am running outside and it is still dark, but what the heck)

October 30, 2014 Posted by | big butts, spandex, workouts | , | Leave a comment

My endurance sports: ever shifting emphasis

This is mostly for me to gather my thoughts; I don’t anticipate this being of interest to anyone else.

1973-1977: I started to work out to get in shape for football. Mostly I lifted weights, ran wind sprints, ran hills, did wrestling bridges, and starting in 1976, started to run.
I’d run this 3.5 mile course before school every morning in the off season, and sometimes a 2 miler (13:30-14:00) on Sunday evenings.

1977-1980: I ran some, and I lifted (part of crew and intramural wrestling and club judo) I also swam laps for fitness.

1980-1983: I got the distance bug here; stable distance was the 10K, though I did 3 marathons and a rare 3 mile or 1 mile race.

1984-1995: I tried to restart jogging, without much success. Mostly lifting and rarely swimming and walking. I got morbidly obese and then lost some of it. Knee problems dogged me.

1996-present: the running bug came back. Here is where I had a shift of emphasis. I’d go through a period of racing a LOT of 5Ks, then 10Ks with a marathon every once in a while.

But I had periods of time where I emphasized something else: 2001 and again 2008: the open water swim. 2002-2004: walking and I tried some judged race walking, and very long distance walking.
2004-2006: ultras: too many for my body to handle. Did 3 of my 4 100 mile races here. I also did some yoga.
2006-2010: aside from a brief period of respite, I was injured frequently. This is where I had the 2008 swim, the 2006 bike ride (my only century ride) and I did have a brief running/walking season in 2009. I also revived my lifting a bit.
2011: tried to recover from knee surgery; athletically this was a tough year for me.
2012-present: mostly the 5K run was the emphasis, with a half marathon here, a marathon (attempt) there.

So, aside from my “injury recovery” phases, it has been “emphasize X ” for a year or two, then emphasize something else. Right now, I do a little bit of :run, walk, swim, lift, with no bicycling and no yoga.

July 27, 2014 Posted by | running, swimming, walking, weight training, workouts | | Leave a comment

My physical weakness and why I am glad that my wife isn’t fat

As I said before my wife suffered a “Jones Fracture” in her foot; she isn’t allowed to put any weight on that foot, at all (no walking boot, for now). Since she doesn’t have the strength to use crutches we need to use a wheel chair to get her around outside of the house (getting down the steps is a challenge).

Fortunately, she is NOT a heavy person; I say this because our house features a lot of steps on the front porch. Hence I have to wheel her up and down a ramp; this ramp is too steep for ordinary handicap use.

Ok, it isn’t THAT steep and a strong man (not me!) would have zero trouble. But alas, I am not exceptionally strong, so when I push her up and slowly walk her down, I have to concentrate. But, yes, at times, I ham it up and make fake grunting noises, masking my personal embarrassment that this is, well, not a hard challenge, but a “concentration needed” task for me.

I’ve got to work on my leg strength!!!!

But this mini-adventure (not a big deal in the large scheme of things) reminded me of this cartoon….which makes me grateful that I don’t have a morbidly obese wife: πŸ™‚


December 7, 2013 Posted by | laughing at myself, weight training, workouts | , , | Leave a comment

I am no longer training

Oh, I worked out today:

weights: McKenzie, hip hikes, rotator cuff, planks (90 second front, 30 seconds side), leg lifts, back bends, etc.

pull ups: 5 sets of 10
military (dumbbell), 3 sets of 12 x 50 (seated, supported)
bench press: 2 sets of 10 x 135 (narrower grip than normal; ok)
rows: 3 sets of 10 x 200 Hammer machine
pull downs: 3 sets of 10 x 160
curls: 3 sets of 10 x 75 machine
abs: 3 sets of 10 of: crunch, v. crunch, sit back, twist.

Then 5K (3.11 miles) run on the treadmill: 28:03 (10:22, 19:17, 27:11) or 10:22, 8:55, 7:54
I started at 5.6 mph (10:42 mpm) and increased the speed by 0.1 mph every minute.

Why I do this workout: I enjoy it; it clears the mind. I am sure that I could do a different running workout with a purpose, but this gets me on the machine (to save my joints), gets me moving and the gradual speed up makes me feel good at the end.

But this is working out, NOT athletic training.

Training is working out with an athletic goal in mind (e. g. running the marathon in a given time, or a mile, 5K or whatever).

October 2, 2013 Posted by | running, workouts | | Leave a comment

Pull ups

I’ve talked about working out. During my weight work outs, I usually include 5 sets of 10 pull ups. While my form is NOT perfect (rigid body) I try not to kick so my form is better than this:


I vary my grip to distribute the stress on my shoulder (rotator cuff issues).

I never go much wider than this


Or this:


This is my “base grip”:


I usually do 1-2 sets with a rotated grip:


And on occasion, I use this grip (though I wear more clothing πŸ™‚ )


And I NEVER use this grip as it kills my bicep tendon:


December 23, 2012 Posted by | big butts, bikinis, spandex, weight training, workouts | | Leave a comment

My Rough Work Commute

People sometimes ask “how do you get the time to train?”

There are two big reasons:

1. My commute to work is all of 300 METERS (under 0.2 of a mile!) on foot! It is literally 7 minutes from out of the door of my house to in the door of my office.
2. I live 400 meters away from a park that has suitable roads for running and about 400 meters way from the university gym. So there is little time spent “getting to the workout place”.

Those are huge factors.

My commute
From my porch, I walk to the road (see the stop sign)

Here is the view of the house from the street I turn on: (the second brick house)

Dead Ahead: the door (looks small; outlined in silver) is where I enter the office building. I do have to climb 4 flights of stairs (to that “castle top” section on the left).


By the way, this saves me a bundle on fuel costs too (for the car).

December 13, 2012 Posted by | Peoria, Peoria/local, Personal Issues, training, workouts | | Leave a comment

End of Race Season, Start of Final Exams

Wed: AM: weights: rotator cuff, pull ups (10 sets of 5; two with rotated grip) bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 180, 3 x 180, 10 x 160, rows: 3 sets of 10 x 60 dumbbell curls: 3 sets of 10 x 52.5 pulley, 3 sets of 10 x 160 (one with rotated grip), military press: 15 x 45 lb. dumbbell, 10 x 50 lb. dumbbell, 10 x 70 (each arm) machine. I also did ab. stuff. Note: the seated military presses with 50’s is an improvement.

Wed. PM: Cornbelt classic course, 4 mile walk. Note: the hills are gated off. πŸ™‚

Thursday AM: 5.1 mile Cornstalk course in 52:12 followed by stretching. It was right around freezing but dry.

No more races for a while:


(from here; many more good ones can be found here)

But there are still things like yoga classes:

Extended Puppy Pose


(from here)

Yoga Crow/Crane Pose


(from here)

I don’t know if I’ll go back to the one I used to go to. I did some yoga on my own and was able to concentrate better.

December 6, 2012 Posted by | big butts, running, spandex, walking, weight training, workouts, yoga | Leave a comment