Friday, January 30, 2009

Running and Rudeness at the Elevator

I am feeling so good to get back into my workout routine. I am in bed by 930 or so and I am up at 445 for a good sweat. I have completed two bike rides, one swim and a run so far this week. I am way off my volume, but it I am over the hump in getting my butt in gear. This morning it was a brisk 25 degrees outside and the sidewalks were still icy in spots. However, at 0530 there is not much traffic on the roads, so the sidewalks are not a necessity. My run buddy (who has not run much in the last month and had minor surgery on her legs) was ready for a nice easy run. We did a very easy 3.5 miles in a little over 30 minutes. It felt good to sweat and even the sting of the cold on my face was pleasant.

Now for a Friday complaint—What is it with women in big cities (and it may be Yankee women(lets see who I piss off with that comment)) that makes them appear to think that a polite man is after something? This morning I was in the elevator in my parking garage and just as the door was shutting (these elevators are slow), I saw a woman with her hands full come into in the elevator lobby, so I help the door so that she would not have to put everything down and wait on a lift. She mumbled a half hearted thank you and looked at me like I was some creep at a bar who used a bad line on her.

This attitude is fairly prevalent. My wife, who is from NYC, has told me that bigger city women are not used to anyone actually being polite. It is viewed as a method of either manipulation, an attempt to get something, or that some women view it as they are being seen as weak. If that is true, that is very sad. I was raised to be a polite and to be a gentleman. But then politeness doesn’t really exist anymore. So I would welcome any comments or experiences. I am craving enlightenment on this topic.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Where does the time go?

I finally have a minute to sit down and do a catch up post. Trying to get caught up after being off work for 10 days can be daunting.

I spent about 10 days back in Georgia with my mother. We had a really good week. Her second round of chemo went very well and she did not suffer many of the side effects that she suffered during her first round. The difference in her from my departure in December to seeing her again on January 9th was like night day. She was very alert, upbeat, and having a good time. Seeing her in such a good frame of mind really lifted a heavy weight off of my shoulders.

With the assistance of my aunt, we were able to locate a lady to live with her. Having someone in the house with her almost 24 hours a day makes it easier for her to stay at home and keep the dog. She really loves the dog and the dog loves her. It will be a sad day for all involved when she can no longer have the dog around. I think that will be more detrimental to her than the illness. The wife and I plan on heading back to Georgia over Presidents’ Day Weekend. My brother is going to join us, so it should be complete visit for her.

Last week, it was more catch up at work than getting in any workouts. This week was been much better. Monday I was able to get in a 30 minute ride on the trainer. My plan was to ease my butt back into the saddle. I haven’t ridden much in a while and I knew it would hurt.
Wednesday we had a snow/ice day here in the Nation’s Capital. I did an hour on the trainer watching Magnum and Jessica Fletcher try to solve a murder. Unfortunately, it is a two part episode and I will have to finish it on Saturday morning.

This morning, it was finally back in the pool. We only did 1850 yard of form work. However, they were short high intensity sets. After this long lay off and my poor technique in general these are the type work outs I really need.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Today's Workout

It feels so good to be getting back in shape—even when it hurts. Today’s work out should not have been that hard, but it was and it felt good to suffer. This was not a long workout, but it was a workout to focus on form and some speed. Right now I need to focus more of form than anything, especially when I get tired.
Today’s workout consisted of the following:

Warmup 500 broken down into 125 kick, 125 pull, 125 swim, and 125 choice
Pyramid 1200—100, 75, 50, 25 (last lap of each was a sprint), 50 active recovery x 4
Stationary kicking drills
Cool down 100 choice
Total 1800

This should not have been as hard it was, but when you have been lazy for months you pay for your lack of activity.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Swimming Like a Brick

Ahhh!! Finally a good day back in the water. There was nothing overly difficult about today’s workout other than I haven’t swan since around Thanksgiving and that was not a long nor difficult swim. Luckily, today was a rather short (1700 meters) swim, which focused on the basics and establishing a baseline to gauge our fitness going forward.

500 Warm up (250 kick/250 pull)

4 x 4 minutes: Swim 225
Pull 200
Kick w/fins 300
Swim w/fins 225
Breast Stroke Drills 200
Cool down 50

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Marine Corps Museum

One of the really cool thing about living in the DC area is all the museums and other things to see and do. We had been talking about heading down to the Marine Corps Museum for the last couple of years, but for one reason or another just never made it. So today we headed down I95 to the museum and then to go furniture shopping for the living room (don't ask).

The Marine Corps Museum is very well done and tells the great story of the Marine Corps. The other two service related museums I highly recommend are the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, FL and my favorite, the Airborne and Special Operations Museum in Fayetteville, NC.
The picture above is from the Tarawa exhibit. I did a black and white version of this picture and it looks almost real.
This exhibit is in the main lobby of the museum.
This marine is talking to the crew of an M4 Sherman Tank.
Here is another marine fighting his way on to Tarawa.
Finally, we have a this marine engaging Japanese aircraft on Guadalcanal.
After our trip to the museum we made it Haverty's to look for some new furniture for the living room. We have been re-doing the house for the past year. Last winter, it was new windows, this past summer we had the entire house painted, in November we came into the 21st century with a flat screen HD television, and now it is time for new living room furniture. Tomorrow is back to work. I hope that everyone had a great Holiday Season and are ready to return to the grind.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

First Day back on Bike

I was back on the bike this morning for the first time in months. I did an easy 14 miles in a little over 52 minutes. This was way slower than I usually bike, but I am just getting started again. I decided to start with season 7 of Magnum and the episode entitled Missing Melody.

The bigger news was that the bride and I went to 5 Guys for lunch and I only had one little hamburger. My problem is not so much what I eat, but how much I eat. So I got my hamburger fix and kept it reasonable.

Now the rest of the day is working around the house and working on workpapers for work.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Charting a Course

So I have wished everyone a Happy New Year and more of less got caught up at work today--even though it was a day off. Now I have to figure out what races I want to do and how to get my fat ass back in shape. I have been rather sloth like since the end of the summer and the last few weeks have not helped much. I know that exercise is a great stress relief and it does make me feel so much better once my work out is complete. It is just getting started when I am stressed that sucks.

I stepped on the scale this morning I it went TILT. I weighed in at a whopping 180lbs. Please keep in mind that I am only 5-8. It is time to get serious and work off this fat and stress. Tomorrow is the beginning. At least one hour on the trainer. The question is which season of Magnum to start with?

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

Can you believe that is the start of a New Year? Where has the time gone? It has been almost 2 months since my last post and so much has happened. It is time to begin anew, but before I do that here is what is going on.

During Thanksgiving the Bride and I hosted my mother and brother at a beach house out on the Delaware coast. My mother was a little slower than the last time I had seen her, but it had been almost a year and she is pushing 70. She slept a lot more than normal and was having a little trouble breathing. When I questioned her about this, she said that she had been cleaning some silver and the fumes had effected her. She had a doctors appointment to have it looked at on her return to Georgia.

On December 6th she called me and told me that she had lung cancer. The week of 8 December she underwent a series of tests to determine what kind of cancer she had and how bad it was. By the end of the week we knew it was small cell cancer in the lungs which had already spread to the liver and to the brain. I was shocked and changed my plans to drive home on 15 December.

I arrived at her house on the evening of her first chemo treatment and was saddened by her condition. I had prepared myself for the worse, so this did not shock me too much. She was asleep on the couch in the living room and was listless. In addition she was on oxygen. I carried to two more chemo treatments and did the other things trying to make her more comfortable. It was very difficult to see your mother in this shape--having to walk her to the bathroom, seeing that she could not walk from the bed to the couch without assistance. Luckily, I had a friend who is a nurse stop by and do the actual baths.

By Sunday she was a little stronger and my brother arrived from the Seattle area. Over the past two weeks she has gotten stronger and we have home health care organized for her. The bride and I arrived back to the DC area this past Tuesday. My brother is staying an extra week to carry her through her next chemo treatments. I will be flying back to Georgia on the 9 January and spend another week with her.

In case you did not read the informational link on small cell cancer, it is terminal and the chemo is merely to make her more comfortable. My brother and I were actually suprised she wanted to undergo another treatment, but as she said, "I am not ready to kick off yet."

Now the intent of this post is not to be a downer. From the moment we are born we are all terminal. The greatest thing about this entire situation is seeing how many people she has touched. The phone did not stop ringing and we had more food than we could possibly eat. Seeing all these people who she has touched has been nothing but awesome. I am so proud of her. I am nothing but motivated to true to do more in my life.

Lets all be thankful for our health and what all we can do. There is nothing to feel sorry about and lets all get out there do the most we can to be an inspiration to others. Happy New Year--Lets all get out there to take care of ourselves and be an inspiration.