Mar 062011

Though afterwards, when Sal was walking away, I told Steve he was a Cheesehead. Steve appropriately grimaced at the thought.

One of the staffers at the fitness challenge this year, was talking to me about my score and said “the top score is only in the 500s, so you’re not that far off.”  Yeah.  And the top score was put in by a Hall of Famer.  Who’s turning 50 this year.  Years of working out have given him some pretty good endurance I guess.  Though I heard there was some controversy around his burpees – though since he has bum wrists, he just fists the push up section.  You should keep that in mind if you have bum wrists.

400 was an internal goal.  Turns out internal goals, take explicit effort to achieve.  That’s the lesson for this year.  And next year.  I dropped two points this year, which was bad, but still good enough to:

  • beat Chuck by 1 point
  • cover my bet with Sonny +60 points.
  • cover my bet with Klaus straight up on the B level.
  • LOSE my bet with my sister straight up on the B level by 9.

So things were close – the betting lines were pretty decent.  Strategy has a lot to do with the scoring here.  As well as starting position.  I didn’t get to start on rowing like I had earned in our random draw, and that hurt my rowing score a bit.  But you gotta play the cards you’re dealt. And this year, I really need to improve my push press cards.  Really.  I think my sister did more per round than I did for the entire thing.  And jumps.  Jumps are a good way to get some fast points.  Should focus on that more.  Didn’t push hard enough on those this year.  Doing 10 more jumps is a lot more doable than doing 5 burpees for me.  Especially the order that they are in.

I think next year’s competition will be even better cause things were so closely packed.

The event and the 30 minutes afterwards are miserable, but the rest of it – the prep beforehand, the talking, the lack of true exercise, the lunch, the look of misery in each other’s eyes right afterwards, the soreness that sets in a few hours later, the feeling that you’ve earned a big fat mexican dinner, matching everyone’s donations because your sister beat you – all that makes the whole experience overall a ton of fun.

Feb 252011

It is fitness challenge time again.

Ben is in the south bay now and should be available for the fitness challenge.  He’s 12+ years younger than me, hustles around the whole field while I just sit nervously in goal, does yoga and pilates, is a hands on rugby coach, and has a lower body fat percentage than me.

He should dominate me in this fitness challenge.

But he hasn’t signed up yet.

So, to help us motivate him and myself, I’m willing to match every donation I get for the fitness challenge if I don’t beat Ben’s score by 60.  That’s about 20 points a round.  Or about 15% of our recent scores.

So forget all that idle talk of whisper numbers and goals and all that jazz.  Sponsor me, then root for Ben to kick my butt in the fitness challenge!

All for a good cause.

Mar 062010

Today’s fitness challenge was practically the same story again.

Still 4th out of 5 and the 5th wasn’t the woman in our group.

Still saved by rowing, cause the multiplied the calories by 2 – would have been 5th if they didn’t.

Again, the 3rd round was a bit of a vacation.  You know, the type where you’re struggling to breathe and survive and your legs are noodles yet you have people yelling at you to keep trying to do stuff that really seems very dangerous at the time. That 45 pound bar that just banged into your chin?  Lift it back over your head again.  Again!

Still wondering what Shawn would do if he actually signed up.

Turned out this year he was just heckling me at the wall ball, which given my tunnel vision due to lack of functioning sensory systems, is surprising that I even heard.  But I also attributed the comment to the other volunteer next to me and it got in my head because I was struggling with my form/living and didn’t need another element to focus on.  What did he say?  “Don’t break the bench.”  Or something like that.  The message was clear, I was not a light butterfly on my way down – but his wife had told me before we even started “your butt has to touch”.  So come on, we can’t have it both ways when there’s 210 pounds of exhausted involved.

New this year, was me wondering what I had to add to beat people.  For most, if we add our donations to the total, I win (thanks everyone).  But for our lady friend, I think I’d need to add our weights to our score.  You know, cause my body weight effects my burpees and jumps and wall balls.  But no one was really down with altering the rules so that I’d beat them. Go figure.

And I guess I recovered faster this year.  First year, it was a day before I was the same.  Last year, maybe 4 hours till the dizzy spells ended.  This year, I ate a whole pizza (designed for 2+ people) before 1pm.  Whoo-hoo!  Sorta.

So I’m back to promising 500 next year.  But since I was only at 370-ish this year, that’s a big order of extra burpees, jumps, wall balls and push presses.  Though my first round was at 166 – which is a 500 pace.  Just that I couldn’t keep it.  Dropped like a rock.  Still, it’s just working on the cardio to be able to do 3 sets of the same stuff.  And I kinda took the burpees off.  Can’t do that next time.  They’re x2 even!

Montgomery, the one that doesn’t work out regularly with a fanatic was the one that won.  Youth triumphs over age again.  We’ll see if youth triumphs over 4 months of training next time.  Or if youth will just stomp all over a faulty memory/lazy dude…

Mar 052010

Fitness challenge again. Please sponsor me.  They won’t spam you constantly afterwards.

I’ve been doing the “easy” fitness challenge, because I’m out of shape and each year, I’m reminded that “fit” people usually do fitness challenges.  As soon as I show up and see all the spandex I’m reminded of that.

But this year, people who said they’d join haven’t joined, and those that have joined have signed up for the hard one.  Chuck was debating which to do.  I didn’t want to be the anchor that held him back, so I moved up to the harder one too.  I mean, if I’m gonna vomit, I might as well do it in the A group.

Last year I said my target number would be 500 this year, then I’d move to the A group.  I think I wrote 330 on the board for my A score this year.  Chuck’s whisper number is 500.  His body weight exercises are easier than mine – aka he’s in better shape.

When Kari moved me up, she said it was a good thing, because her friend, who likes to make fun of my performance in the fitness challenge over the last couple of years, was going to do the A challenge and was going to make fun of me for doing the B challenge.

So then I had to wonder which would be worse – being made fun of for doing the B or being made fun of for doing worse on the A.  Make fun of my apple or make fun of my tiny orange?

Please sponsor me, so at least, I can win at fund-raising.  Thanks.

Oct 072009

A kid needed help getting to college by getting me to sign up for the paper.  His 30 second spiel closed with:

I know, with the internet and everything you don’t need papers piling up on your doorstep.  That’s why I’m offering this service where I call in within 30 days and cancel your membership for you. You get your money back and I get credit for the sale.

I’ll get a call in a few days from the paper confirming a high school kid signed me up.  Then in 2-3 weeks, he’s going to call the paper for me and cancel.

That works for me.  At worst, I contributed 20 bucks to a good little scam – with or without the paper.  I didn’t trust him enough to give him my credit card though.

Turns out the kid wants to goto Santa Clara University…business school no less.

Mar 082009

And I think that Streets song applied to everyone else more than me.  Possibly, a bit to me, cause while I was watching others go through the fitness challenge, I was thinking I could take them.  But doesn’t apply to me, cause there’s that baseline of being fit in the song.  And it’s a different type of fit.  But the idea’s the same.

This year around, not as many people I knew in the challenge.  Only 1 actually, Montgomery.  Good for him.  He’s still doing the hardcore A set of tasks (more weights and burpies, without the pushup or jump though, instead of table push-ups).  I think I’ll take another year or two to get to the A group.  Thought I’d dominate the B group this year, but came 4th out of 5 in my little group of B’ers.  And the 5th place person wasn’t the lady. So I probably belong in B for a while yet.

1st round was easy.  2nd round not so easy.  3rd round easy again, cause I was hardly doing anything.

Looking at the high score board going into our set, I felt I had a chance on the rowing to burn the most calories.  They didn’t do the last minute switcheroo to meters this year, so it was tougher to get points in.  But if there was one category I could make a run on, that was it.  My counter was telling me to forget about the rowing, cause there was only a range of 4 or so calories burned so I wasn’t going to be able to much there.  I tried to stay agreeable, no reason to argue with this dude who I need to help me out by giving me a generous count.  But I was pleased after my first round of rowing and the guy at the rowing station said I was a potential high score and my counter said that I might be onto something.

When I left, I had only had 1 or 2 dizzy spells and wasn’t close to vomiting (the bucket already seemed to have some vomit in it, so I wouldn’t have been in the running  for the prize for first to vomit, so maybe that lack of motivation helped a bit) and I had the most calories burnt on the rowing machine for either group, A or B.  I think that’s partially cause everyone else was focusing on the other types of challenges. Though spending a month trying to row 100k probably didn’t hurt either.  Some might think that since this rowing thing seems to come easy for me, I should take it seriously.  Except that I’d probably sink any boat.

Last year, I didn’t post all my individual scores, so it’s going to take some reverse math to figure out how things compared from one to the other.

I had 912.  When we converted my meters rowed to 1/10th of them, then I had 327.  Shawn was 1053 and 447.  I’m ashamed to admit I need paper and a calculator now.  912 = X + Y and 327 = X + Y/10.  Two variables, two equations, should be doable, right?  X = 327 – Y/10 = 912 – Y.   So  Y – Y/10 = 912 – 327 and Y = 650.

Hmm…that’d mean that my division by 10 for an estimate of calories last year would say 65 calories.  I did 66 calories this year.  That estimate was off.  Cause I also would have rowed further than 650 meters this year.  1 calorie is more than 10 meters.  Kind of sucks, but it is.

Anyway, that rowing trivia aside, that means last year I did 262 outside of the rowing.  This year I did 406 total, with 66 in rowing, or 340 outside of rowing.  Improving almost 80 in the steps, the pushups, the wall ball and the presses.  And I didn’t stay in single digits for the last set of pushups – I got to 10.  With a little bump up in rowing meters, I would have beat my 1000 point total I promised last time and I think that’s a reasonable assumption to make given the rowing I’ve done lately.  But Shawn last year did 380 outside of rowing.  Would be interesting to have seen how close it would have been this year, with the rowing, and that improved shape he’s in.  Did Kari mention she’d set up the gym for us to have our own challenge off hours sometime?

I guess next year, I’ll go for 500 total if it’s calories burnt on the rowing machine.  Top in our group this time did 490.  Yeah, 500 will be the goal and once I clear 500, I’ll move into the A group.